I love New Year's resolutions, I really do. After months of holiday decadence, resolutions give me the chance to think about what I want to do better in the coming year. This January, Whole Foods has really helped me - and my team members - with our resolutions thanks to our new "this is my year to" campaign. We have all been sharing our resolutions by wearing buttons as well as tacking up notices on our store news board - check out the pictures! A sampling of resolutions I've seen:
This is my year to:
- Drink more water
- Have more family dinners
- Switch from coffee to tea
- Get rich and move to Miami
While the resolutions have been diverse, a common theme in many has been to eat more healthfully. In fact, for my own resolution I decided to try a new diet myself: veganism. For those who may not know what that entails, vegans don't eat animal products or anything made from animal products - that means no eggs, dairy, cheese, honey, etc.
I started my diet on January 1st with a big shopping spree: soy milk, veggie burgers, chickpeas, vegetable broth and a new cookbook: Vegonomicon
by Isa Chandra Moskowitz and Terry Hope Romero. I told all of my friends that I was embarking on this experiment to improve my health, to lose those five pounds of holiday turkey saddled around my middle and, most importantly, to really understand what it is like to be a vegan.
It is now almost a month into my journey, and I have learned a lot. First, it's hard to be a vegan - it takes real commitment to check ingredient labels and make sure there is no hidden dairy or honey in your food. It also takes commitment to stick to your guns when your friends may or may not understand your new dietary choices. Going out to eat can be rough when you're still getting used to your new lifestyle. Fortunately, I've also learned that there are some really delicious vegan foods out there, and I have been really enjoying rediscovering vegetables. My new favorite dinner is cannellini beans simmered with garlic, olive oil, sage and diced tomatoes on a bed of spinach. So flavorful and so simple! The bottom line is, this diet has made me think a lot more carefully about what I put in my body and has made me much more sympathetic to those who choose to follow an alternative diet, as well as a lot more educated about what my store offers for vegans.
More of our Team Members are also giving alternative diets a try. Here's what Melissa Traverse, one of our Marketing Team Leaders, has to say:
At Whole Foods Market in Brighton, 13 of us are trying a raw foods diet for two weeks. Yes, that's right, all raw food all the time! This means that our diet is comprised of veggies, fruits, nuts, seeds, sprouted grains and not much else. Though we're in the beginning stages, the changes in our moods, health and habits are drastic! I'm not going to lie - the transition is challenging for most of us, to say the least.
Matt Reid, our vegan Whole Body Associate Team Leader reports "I miss seitan, veggie burgers and even things like banana chips, which I noticed have sugar added to them. I'm not much of a sugar guy, but reading labels makes me realize that a lot of the things I eat have added sugar!" Dave Collins, 2nd Associate Store Team Leader, is faring better than some of us: "I'm surprisingly not as hungry as I thought I'd be," and went on to list the tasty foods he's been trying out. Roza Mija, our Payroll & Benefits Specialist, started the diet a couple of weeks early to get a head start and not only feels great, but looks AMAZING - the woman is glowing!
Check out our Brighton store blog for continued updates!
Have you made any changes to your diet this new year? We'd love to hear about them!