Looking to add Meatless Monday to your meal plan? Limiting the amount of meat you eat per week may reduce your chance of chronic conditions such as cancer, cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and obesity. Eating a lot of red or processed meats is linked to a higher risk of developing certain cancers. Ditching meat at your meals one day a week will encourage you to eat other foods that are good for your health. Plant based diets that include veggies, fruits, grains, beans, and nuts are high in fiber, vitamins, and nutrients. Check out these other 6 great benefits of Meatless Mondays:

  • Reduce Heart Disease and Stroke: Fruits and vegetables help your body fight cardiovascular disease. If you are excluding meat, be sure to still eat a well-balanced meal. Eating no meat on Mondays will encourage you to increase your veggie, fruit, whole grain, and legume intake.
  • Lower Cancer Risk: Red meat or processed meat may increase the risk of colorectal cancer. Having a diet rich in vegetables and fruits may lower your risk of cancer.
  • Prevent diabetes: Diets low in processed meat, and high in plant-based foods, may reduce your risk for type 2 diabetes. Adding more greens to your diet can help you maintain a healthy weight through a well-balanced diet, which is a key factor in preventing type 2 Diabetes.
  • Prevent obesity: Because greens are so rich in fiber, those who eat vegetarian diets have a lower risk of obesity. As obesity may lead to other health issues, going green on Mondays may help you maintain a healthy weight.
  • Save Money: Not only is excluding meat on Mondays good for your health, but also for your wallet. Save a few bucks each week by skipping meat on Mondays!
  • Reduce your carbon footprint: Avoiding meat just one day a week saves valuable resources that can then be used elsewhere. This greatly lowers a person’s carbon footprint and helps us maintain wildlife and resources.

To learn more about Meatless Mondays, please visit the Mayo clinic’s website.

Interested in Meatless Mondays? Give this Chickpea Quinoa Burger recipe a try:

  • 1 yam
  • 2 tablespoons grapeseed oil, divided
  • 1 cup quinoa, prepared according to package instructions
  • 1 (14 ounce) can chickpeas, drained and rinsed
  • 1 small onion, peeled and chopped
  • 1 red bell pepper, seeded and chopped
  • 2 carrots, peeled and chopped
  • 1 cup fresh spinach, tightly packed
  • 2 tablespoons sunflower seeds
  • 1 tablespoon pumpkin seeds
  • juice of 1 lemon
  • 1 tablespoon ground cumin
  • 2 tablespoons sesame tahini
  • 1 tablespoon hot sauce
  • salt and pepper, to taste
  • a little flour, for dusting the burger patties

Preheat an oven to 375 degrees.

Poke several holes in the yam using a fork. Place the yam in a paper towel and microwave on high for 5 minutes. Flip the yam and microwave 5 minutes more, or until tender. Slip off the yam’s skin.

Place 1 of the tablespoons of grapeseed oil in a sauté pan over medium heat. Add the onion and cook for 2-3 minutes, or until it begins to soften. Add the carrot and bell pepper to the pan and cook 3-5 minutes more, or until the veggies are just tender.

Transfer the sautéed veggies to a food processor and pulse to chop. Add the spinach and pulse a few more times until combined. Transfer the veggies to a large mixing bowl.

Add the chickpeas and tahini to the food processor and pulse until broken down and combined. Transfer to the mixing bowl with the veggies.

Add the cooked quinoa, yam, sunflower seeds and pumpkin seeds to the mixing bowl. Season the veggie quinoa mixture with the lemon juice, cumin and hot sauce, if using. Stir until well combined, taking care to ensure all ingredients are evenly distributed. Season with salt and pepper to taste.

Shape the veggie quinoa mixture into 8 patties using your hands. Dust each patty with flour.

Heat the remaining tablespoon grapeseed oil in an oven-safe skillet over medium-high heat. Add the burger patties and cook for about 2 minutes per side, or until browned on both sides. Transfer the patties to a baking sheet and bake about 10-12 minutes more, or until cooked through. Enjoy!

Recipe source

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