Surviving Thanksgiving as a Vegetarian

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Gianna Cognetti, Features Editor

Following a vegan and vegetarian diet during the holidays can be challenging, especially during a holiday known for its turkey. However, with the popularity of plant-based diets, preparing for Thanksgiving meals does not have to be as difficult. 

There are many modified dishes that are just as delicious as traditional Thanksgiving meals. Some of those delicacies include tofu roasts, vegan pies, soups, gravies, cauliflower salads and more. Potatoes, vegetables and stuffing are also common. The featured dish is not forgotten —Tofurkey is a meat substitute made from tofu or seitan that is available to both vegetarians and vegans. 

Senior Kalif Wallace will enjoy his third vegan Thanksgiving this year. His family shares foods such as collard greens, rice, stuffing, falafels, gravy, sweet potato pie and apple pie, all made from vegan ingredients.   

“My favorite meal is collard greens, rice, gravy and stuffing,” Wallace said.

For some people on vegan and vegetarian diets, their family and friends may not understand their wishes to avoid certain foods. Fortunately for Wallace, his immediate family are vegans and he is a vegetarian. Although his extended family does not engage in the vegan and vegetarian lifestyle, they are understanding of their food preferences. 

“The transitions are not really that hard, as long as they understand why you eat the way you do,” he said.

Holidays so close together can become overwhelming with the abundance of food provided. Switching to a vegan or vegetarian diet during the holidays can not only satisfy cravings, but also create a healthier lifestyle. For those who don’t typically partake in a vegan and vegetarian diet, doing so around the holidays is great for losing or maintaining weight, adding healthy benefits to your body like more fiber, fewer consumption of calories and lowering cholesterol.

Plant-based diets have become so common that when it comes to holidays, making such meals can be just as similar to making any other ordinary meal.Meals in a vegan and vegetarian Thanksgiving are not that different from a traditional Thanksgiving meal they just incorporate different ingredients.


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