Men's Guide to The Seasonal Diet


The Seasonal Diet: What is it?

Currently, it’s a dense PDF resource full of how-to stuff, recipes, meal-plans, equipment and shopping/ingredients advice. All of the recipes are vegan and plant-based, and there is a lot of cooking involved when you really follow the guidelines Sarah and I outline.

Sound fun? Or are you stressed & nervous?

If you’re new to a plant-based diet, it can seem a little nerve-wracking. “Just plants? No meat, fish, cheese or eggs?” Your gut doesn’t like it, your taste buds aren’t too excited about it, your inner macho is resisting.

This is normal. Believe me, I live completely opposite today than I did just 4 years ago. Back then I prided myself on spending next to nothing on monthly groceries, now I spend (invest) twice that! I used to roll with a 12-pack of Twinkies in my backseat, now I’m packin trailmix.

me in 2010

If you’re reading this, I’m guessing you already know about this wholefood stuff. More Nourishment = Less Baggage (which means more energy, lean muscle, better digestion, higher consciousness, etc.)

My intention for writing this is to help you adopt The SD, fully, because I’d be willing to bet you would stick to at least 90% of it if you manned-up and gave it shot.

Men’s Guide to The Seasonal Diet

What About Protein?

Unless you’re a vegan bodybuilder, you don’t need to stress out about this. When I first started eating this way, that’s what I did – I was totally obsessed. My advice is to make sure that you’re eating a good sized quantity of proteins every day. Things like quinoa, buckwheat, rice & beans, nuts, seeds or tofu (you won’t grow boobs I promise).

But let’s also not forget that plants have protein as well…

1 cup broccoli (5 grams)
1 cup spinach (5 grams)
2 cups cooked kale (5 grams)
1 avocado (10 grams)
1 cup cooked sweet potato (5 grams)

I do both in my smoothies on the daily: leafy greens + 1 scoop protein powder

protein powder

What About Iron?

1 cup of spinach has 36% of your daily iron. If you’re drinking green juice, making green smoothies and eating salad once a day you’ll never have to worry about this.

Green Juice2

Eat A Green Salad Every Day

I actually can’t take credit for coming up with this one. I was inspired by Brendan Brazier in his 2nd book, Thrive, where he says he aims to eat a salad every single day. He’s also the guy that convinced me a plant-based lifestyle isn’t for sissy’s too, it takes a lot of effort – but the results are addictive. We have a ton of salad recipes throughout The SD, but don’t be afraid to ‘beef’ them up! If you’re feeling extra hungry, load up some additional calories in your salad like nuts, seeds, avocado, beans, brown rice, etc.

Plan ahead and don’t make your girl be responsible for filling you up – so keep these things on hand and make sure you’re good and full. There’s nothing worse than having to resort to junk food after dinner because you didn’t get enough to eat – every time you eat crap, you take a step back.

big salad

Gluten-Free Isn’t For Girls

I was never formally tested for a gluten-intolerance, but I feel better without it. I’ve had a lot of digestive problems throughout my life, and I’ve found that breads were the biggest source of constipation (TMI?). The faster you can get off bread the better you’ll feel – it’s amazing how much energy it takes away from you, and once you go 30 Days without it you’ll see what I mean!

Other than bread, gluten isn’t hard to avoid – especially since you’ll be using more SD recipes.

Getting Enough Calories

I mentioned how to make a salad heartier, but what about in-between meals? In The SD, we say that it’s good to get hungry and to avoid snacks as much as possible. Does that mean we never snack? No way! When we’re out running errands we’re always thinking about food, when’s our next meal? How hungry are we right now and will we make it until dinner (or have a total hunger meltdown, like me)

Again, plan ahead and always keep a healthy snack around – whether it’s in the car or house. I like to rotate my snacks so I don’t always have the same thing, and I try not to get too many at one time – otherwise I end up over-eating (which is worse).

Beet Burger

Eating 2 Meals A Day

I was eating totally vegan, plant-based for a year before eliminating breakfast. I’ll never forget the conversation with Sarah one night in Seattle – she had been reading Detox 4 Women by Natalia Rose and was feeling like her perspective on healthy eating made so much sense. Sarah was eating mostly sweet potatoes and kale at this point, and wanted little to do with beans and nuts, so when she approached me with the idea of eliminating breakfast I was not too excited. But… I gave it a shot. And… it was awesome.

It took a couple weeks to get used to, but greatly improved my energy throughout the day. Up until this point I would eat a bowl of oatmeal first thing in the morning, and it would kill my energy every time. I still consume calories in the morning, it’s just not a meal, per say. I drink green juice, a green smoothie and then have a big lunch at noon, maybe some fruit in the afternoon and a big dinner.

If you follow this routine but still have a hard time…

  • Making it until lunch – then put more calories in your smoothie like: protein powder, avocado, coconut flakes or almonds.
  • Making it to dinner – try eating more quantity for lunch. It does take some time for your stomach to adjust to all the fiber though. Remember, you can also have a snack before dinner too – just don’t rely on it and create a snacking habit.

morning liquids2

SD Serving Sizes

The serving sizes for the recipes in The SD should be similar to how most pre-packaged foods quantify theirs. For example, I’ve always eaten at least 2 servings (and Sarah often does as well) so if a recipe states 4 servings, you’ll be good to go. Keep in mind that what your body needs today may be different than what it needed yesterday. If you workout a lot, or you’re training for a race or something, you’ll also see your need for more food grow as well.

Stay Focused

While eating super-healthy like this is incredibly satisfying, it takes a lot more work than a convenience food lifestyle.

Connect with why you’re doing this and use that to create a mantra for yourself to keep going even when your tired, or tight on money. When I first got started eating this way, I was rebelling against my family’s illnesses I was told I’d inherit, as if my genes predicted my entire health path. I realized this was a myth, and have been putting forth the effort every single day for almost 4 years now. I’ve seen what my family has gone through over this past few years, and that will not be me.

That’s really the only difference between you making it and not: How bad do you want it?

* * *

Your health is the only thing you truly have in this life, so don’t skimp or cut corners. And remember – the better you do, the greater the results and success you’ll have. Cheers!

What did I miss? Post any questions you have in the comments below and I’ll respond asap!

    1 Response to "Men’s Guide to The Seasonal Diet"

    • Olivia Lane

      Love this post!!! It’s nice to hear a guy’s perspective on healthy eating. Also I love that you used to have 12 pk of Twinkies in your car. Ha!

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