For about two years now I have been on an organic, non GMO, clean diet. It took some research to uncover where I could get the freshest cleanest food in my area but I’m much better off for it. Now I’m ready to take the next step. I have danced around the decision to give up meat completely for a while now, but some recent medical news has made me take a hard look at what nutrition means to me.
My hesitation with giving up meat used to stem from being ridiculed by all the carnivores in my life and being told by vegans I haven’t gone far enough, but I realized I need to make this decision for me, not anyone else. Whatever I do is better than what I was doing. My decision, while greatly due to my desire to restore my health, is also more in line with my ethics and lifestyle than what currently goes on my plate. I have never really worn real leather or fur with the exception of a baseball glove, and I try my best to avoid products containing animal by-products or that are tested on animals. I’m not a craver of red meat and I haven’t tasted real bacon or cow’s milk in about 2 years so I think that’s to my advantage in this transition. I just have to keep reading labels and translating ingredients, because there are animal by-products hidden EVERYWHERE.
A meatless lifestyle is better for our climate, which leads to a bluer and greener planet… also very important to me. I realized it’s almost a no-brainer. I can help the planet, and improve my health. Plus, I cannot look my dog in the eye, tell him I will always protect him, and then eat a burger. They are both heartbeats who feel pain and have emotions.
I have done my research, and even publications presented BY the meat industry, defending the methods they use, are disturbing. It’s no secret that labels such as free range mean nothing, the FDA is not on the side of the consumer, and there is absolutely no “humane” way to slaughter anything. I won’t get on a tirade here except to say “I’m done.”
Here’s where I hope I don’t offend the Vegans…I’m a baby stepper with these things you see, so I want to make sure I don’t get discouraged. I’ve read about meatless Mondays and weekend vegans but I wanted to go a little further than that. So I’m giving up all meat, and all dairy firmly. I’m keeping seafood for now until I get used to cooking this way.
Also, and I know there’s some debate over this, I haven’t figured out what to do about honey. Yes, I know it’s basically bee vomit, and that bees are disappearing and are farmed just like mammals. I’ve depended on local organic and raw honey quite a bit for my own health and my daughters allergies so I’m not sure which direction to go with this one.
Finally saying, “yeah, I can do this” is actually a relief. I know, I’m not hard-core Vegan or anything, I’m not even sure what you’d label what I’m doing, but I know it feels right and hopefully will make me healthier. Make fun of my salad and quinoa, but no cruelty was involved in making it. No heartbeats stopped. And hopefully this will keep mine beating for a long time.
I have a lot to learn. I’ve been trying out some recipes given to me by vegan friends but I would love any advice from those who have made the same leap. I look forward to your comments!
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