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The Painful Breakup with Cheese

How do I break up with thee?

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My love affair with Cheese

Since I was little, I was such a cheese fanatic that my family has a nick name for me… ratinha  which means, little mouse in Portuguese. My love of cheese continued on until a few years ago. As I discovered the plant-based lifestyle, everything was easy to let go off except my love of cheese.

Cheese has always been my go-to fav when having cocktails, or during the day for a quick snack…it was everything. So I get you if you have a hard time imagining life without it.

I’m not going to lie, giving up cheese took YEARS and it was a trial and error process. But, I want to share with you some ideas on how to start at least diminishing your intake, and gradually replacing that cheese craving need.

My Motivation

One of my main motivators was my health. I used to have terrible cycles (I know what you are thinking TMI) but I think it is important to share this with you. My cycles were long, painful (to the point that I had to have prescribed medication to deal with my cramps and I had to take at least one day off from work or activities to cope with it). I was miserable! But since I’ve been completely off dairy, it lasts three days max and my cramps are so light I barely need help to cope with it! Just for that reason alone, it has been worth it giving it up. 

I am amazing

My Break Up

First I had to really think about it why I loved cheese so much and I realized, I like how salty it is and the texture. I think the fat content was also an important fact. The body craves that fat especially if you are looking for that "comforting" feeling, or if you are having a cocktail. So I knew that I would have to match these flavor profiles with some alternatives.

THESE TIPS ARE HELPFUL

1. CHANGE what type of cheese you buy

Buy really sharp, aged cheese. This will make your intake less because it is so rich you will find yourself eating slivers of it rather than big chunks of it. Also these tend to be more expansive so you will savor the small bites and want to have left overs as much as possible. 

2. Ideas on how to wean off cheese

1st- tame your expectation

It's never going to be cheese

But I assure you your pallets will adapt and your body will too! It will scream thank you!

1st cheese is salty

0. when drinking that is so good

So what to do to replace that rich, smooth salty flavor:

What you are craving is the salt and fat

  1. olives are salty, delicious 
  2. You can buy or make a tepanade and add it to chips or crackers
  3. Vegan pesto (show products to buy... add salt if you want or more vegan Parmesan (show product, or yeast)
  4. Get vegan cheese and add salt
  5. Buy veg cream cheese and dip
  6. Veg bacon bites
  7. Some quick salty easy to make dip
  8. Vegan sour cream so good with olives and chips
  9. Salted sautéed kale with soy sauce
  10. Bean dip
  11. Artichoke spinach dip
  12. Calabresa salad
  13. Beer and cheese and onions with spicy mustard
  14. Buy vegan frozen appetizers
  15. Make melt bites (more work but def satisfying)
  16. Eat French fries
3. Have a vegan party
  • each of your friends will bring a type of vegan ch
  • Vegan cheese platter
  • Add salt, grapes, toppings, pair it with alcohol
  • Add cranberries
  • Make it Greek with olives cucumber fan cheddar onions pita vegan taziki sauce roasted red peppers hummu and olive oil
  • Remember there are no rules as to what you can add or mix it up
  • Have fun!
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