When I was asked to review Lani Muelrath’s The Plant-Based Journey for this blog, I’ll admit I hadn’t heard of her before. But with a forward by Dr. Neal Barnard and a preface by Dr T. Colin Campbell I knew she was in good company with two of the biggest heavy hitters in the plant-based nutrition movement.
The Plant-Based Journey is the perfect guidebook for those considering a vegan lifestyle. The steps outlined in the introduction of the book are divided into six sections: Awakening, Scout, Rookie, Rock Star and Champion. The sixth section focuses on strengthening your body and mind and includes lots of great looking recipes that are simple and quick to prepare.
Recipes include those from top name contributors such as Colleen Holland from VegNews, artisan vegan cheese maven Miyoko Schinner and Chef AJ as well as pages of original recipes from Lani herself. The recipes look delicious and I’m excited to try this one for Pumpkin Muffins.
Throughout the book, Lani shares her own journey of removing animal products from her diet and how she eliminated dairy as her last step. Some may believe this is the easiest route to take as dairy is known to be the most difficult food group to cut but my own belief is that it should be your first step as the health benefits are the most dramatic encouraging you to continue with the rest of the changes. The book stresses that, “progression through [the stages] is an individual affair”; everyone progresses at their own pace and will develop their own “style of transition” as Lani so eloquently expressed in a recent interview.
Having that flexibility will be a relief to many people considering a plant-based diet as some may think they have to go all-or-nothing in order to succeed. Lani sets up a manageable timeline to take the reader from their Awakening where they make their first connection with plant-based eating all the way to Champion where they will have eliminated all animal products from their plate and are now fine tuning their new healthy lifestyle by practicing what was learned previously.
This journey may be easier for some than for others and several of the biggest challenges facing new vegans are covered within the pages of the The Plant-Based Journey such as struggles with eating out or getting your family onboard. Busy families will be thankful for the creative templates provided for meal planning, a secret weapon for reaching your vegan goal and making your life a whole lot easier.
Lani sums up the journey at the end of the book where she writes, “along with the systems, stages, and steps for change, cultivate an adventurous energy around what you are doing. By all means, don’t lose sight of the importance of enjoying what you eat. And never, ever lose your sense of humor. You may just become the healthiest, happiest person you know.“
I’d like to make one reader happy by giving away a copy of The Plant-Based Journey courtesy of BenBella Books. Leave a comment below and tell me why you or someone you know needs help on their plant-based journey. I will choose a random winner by Monday, October 5, 2015. Good luck!