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Why aren't you a vegan or vegetarian? - Page 2

post #21 of 68

My husband and I were both raised with meat as the main dish, every single night.

 

As an adult, nothing has convinced me that humans aren't meant to consume meat.  But I have concluded that our standard American portions of meat tend to be much too large and that, as consumers, we ought to be more conscious of production practices (to the extent that we can afford to).  

 

Our parents and grandparents seemed to view a meatless dinner as an indication of poverty.  For my husband and me, a week without at least one meatless night indicates a lack of creativity and effort, with meal planning.  Besides, we're Catholic and we try to be more observant than our parents were (easy for my husband, who was raised by Baptists! :wink.)  We like the Catholic tradition of abstaining from meat on Fridays, both to focus on the idea of sacrifice (meat being a very small one), and for health.  (Although the Church doesn't expect abstention anymore, except during Lent.)  Our crew of 3 teenage boys is actually excited when I make veggie lasagna or "Mexican Hoppin' Johns" (layered brown rice and spicy black beans, corn, tomatoes, peppers and onions - a variation of an old southern dish with black-eyed peas and okra).  

 

But they're in the period of peak caloric and protein need, in their lifetimes.  They play physically-demanding sports.  They crave meat and are usually disappointed and carb-loading, if they don't get it.  So, I try to offer smaller portions of meat, using dishes that mix in meat with other ingredients, instead of always having a slab of meat flanked by side dishes.  Eating less meat affords us more choice about what meat we buy - although we still can't afford organic, free-range, grass-fed meat from Whole Foods.

post #22 of 68
Quote:
Originally Posted by Tuesday View Post
 

I have confused thoughts on this issue!

 

I was vegan for about 18 years. During that time, I suffered a lot of health issues including development of a dramatic autoimmune condition.  I have friends who have only recently turned vegan and consider it an answer to all health issues - it was not, so, for me. I think there's an idea that people can completely control "bad" health issues and by eating vegetarian, vegan, raw, etc - it will control and prevent all negative health issues. Not so.   I also find I feel very ungrounded and airy, if I'm only eating vegan.   I need the protein, it seems to temper this airiness.  And, I'm allergic to soy (and fish, for that matter) so tofu is out.    I do eat a lot of vegetables however.

 

It's good to hear your voice Tuesday! I was vegan for 12 years. For the first 10 years I felt amazing. Then I started getting the airy feeling you describe. Besides being overweight my health appeared to be perfect. I wasn't anemic, my blood pressure was fantastic, thyroid, eyesight, etc. were all OK-- so the airiness didn't seem to have any explanation besides my diet. I began eating eggs, then goat dairy (cow dairy was a big reason I felt bad before going vegan), then fish, then birds, then some red meat. It took quite some time but I finally landed back on earth.

 

I am still seriously struggling with the idea. Being vegan worked so well for me for so long, and I hate the idea of eating the bodies of animals. I don't feel like I have much of a choice these days, unless I want to move to a mountain ashram where I don't have to deal with reality. Part of me wishes I didn't take literally years to come to terms with it... I was running a business that was doing well. Eventually I couldn't focus well and got anxious about small things and the business fell apart. I have always lived in my head and not my body, and it has always taken me forever to figure out what my body needs.

 

I am sorry to hear about your health condition-- are you feeling better? Even when I was an enthusiastic vegan I couldn't stand it when people would suggest that being vegan or raw was the answer to all health issues. Humans are obviously meant to eat meat and eggs (dairy-- that's not so certain). There are also the folks who claim that a plant-based diet is the root of all health problems. The bottom line is that you can only eat for your own body type. I believe you can survive for a long time very healthfully by following a plant-based diet, so I don't want to knock it. But it's so important to listen to what your body needs.

post #23 of 68
Because i know we need proteins from animals. I'm actually invesigating the Paleo, Omni and primal diets. Grains are not good.
post #24 of 68

I feel most happy on a vegtarian, cheese free diet, with lots of greens and seaweed, but I can imagine other people pdo refer eating meat.

It's great that there are so many different ways to feed ourselves and our children!

post #25 of 68

I was born and raised a vegetarian and only within the last 6 month s have started eating meat. I always thought it was better to not eat animal products till I did some reading and couldn't ignore any longer what I had learned. (The Weston A. Price foundation changed my life) Obviously it is not good to support factory meat farms... so we don't. We eat small portions of high quality and humanely treated meat as our bodies were intended to do. I don't think we were intended to eat giant portions of factory farmed meat and most people would agree that that's not very healthy!

post #26 of 68

I still struggle with the fact that another being had to die for our nourishment, but it helps when I remind myself that the food chain is not actually a line, but a circle... We all feed each other. When we die our bodies become food for the plants and animals that need us to thrive and they feed the bigger animals ect.

 

That zucchini NEEDS the blood and bones of an animal to grow tasty and Delicious and full of nourishment to feed a so called 'Vegan'.

post #27 of 68
Quote:
Originally Posted by amandaspeters View Post
 

I still struggle with the fact that another being had to die for our nourishment, but it helps when I remind myself that the food chain is not actually a line, but a circle... We all feed each other. When we die our bodies become food for the plants and animals that need us to thrive and they feed the bigger animals ect.

 

That zucchini NEEDS the blood and bones of an animal to grow tasty and Delicious and full of nourishment to feed a so called 'Vegan'.

 

Don't forget the poo.  Pasture and grasslands do not thrive because predators die and lay their bodies and bones behind.  It grows because grazing animals poo all over the place, and vultures feeding on dead predators poo there, too.  The Lion King wouldn't have been so poetic if the Circle of Life was all about animal feces.  Not to mention the palatability of that zucchini.

post #28 of 68
Quote:
Originally Posted by SweetSilver View Post

The Lion King wouldn't have been so poetic if the Circle of Life was all about animal feces.

Lol!

I'm not a vegetarian because I like meat, feel better when I eat it, and don't have an ethical problem with eating it.

We incorporate meat into our dinners maybe 3-4 times per week, mostly because I buy expensive humanely raised meat. I have talked with my kids about mindful consumption, even with produce (buying local/organic when possible).
post #29 of 68

I thought I'd chime in since no one on this thread actually said they preferred a veg or vegan diet. I am not at all opposed to people eating meat, and in fact, my husband eats chicken regularly. But I would like to make the argument that a vegetarian diet can feel great. I've been a vegetarian my entire adult like, and I'm raising my 3 kids vegetarian. My kids eat lots of dairy, but I try to limit my dairy so I'm mostly vegan though not totally. I'm Indian American, so I come from generations of vegetarians (and no, I'm not a vegetarian for religious reasons, but many of my family members are). I know dozens if not more of lifelong vegetarians and they are healthy, strong, and haven't faced any problems resulting from diet, with the exception of those people who eat too much fat and sweets, and that can result in high blood pressure, diabetes, etc. as well. A vegetarian diet is not innately healthy - loading up solely on potato chips and fries would still make you a vegetarian. I think what's most important is eating healthy and feeling good about it, which is entirely possible for vegetarians.

post #30 of 68

I was a vegetarian from the age of 13 til about 16 (I did consume dairy and eggs). Gradually I started to consume meat again. Then at age 20 I married a hunter, meat and potatoes sort of guy. Currently for dinner we tend to have two meatless meals a week. One egg based meal a week (we've got 5 chickens), two meals tend to be meat center dishes and then the others tend to have meal more as a garnish. Sometimes our two "meatless" meals might have some meat as a flavoring but not as the focus of the dish.

 

I'd go back to vegetarian again with little worry, Though I do like bacon a lot.  Vegan seems to restrictive for me personally. As for my whole family I have little doubt that any of them would follow along.

post #31 of 68
I can do meatless 2-3 nights a week but like many said here... I feel better and stronger on a meaty diet. I do try to eat organic and local as much as possible. Or at least as much as my wallet can take!

You know we do have canine teeth for ripping and tearing rare meat.. I think that says a lot about what humans evolved to eat.eat.gif

I ran a new mom's support group for seven years and countless vegetarians would tell me that even after a lifetime of veggie eating that they craved meat in pregnancy. And a few continued to crave meat while nursing.
post #32 of 68

Gosh I'm so glad you wrote this. I was a vegetarian for a long time for ethical reasons (10 billion land animals raised and slaughtered every year in inhumane conditions), the environment (eating meat is the biggest contributor to greenhouse gas emissions), but I never thought about my health. Instead of eating plant proteins, I just ate carbs and felt sick. So instead of eating plant proteins I started eating meat again. I felt awful for the animals, but I found a way to make peace. I eat cats and dogs. Since millions of healthy cats and dogs are euthanized in shelters each year in the US, I figure their flesh is as good as any cow, pig, or chicken. I feel great and have found a way to quiet my conscience. 

post #33 of 68

I could be vegan for myself fairly easily, but my DH is a meat n' potatoes loving guy and he'd never give up meat. When we got married he started doing most of the cooking so it was plenty of meat all the time. I think I felt the best when I was eating mostly fruit/veg during the day and then having whatever meat dish he made for dinner. It gave a decent balance. My diet has been dramatically different in pregnancy - way more protein and dairy and eggs than I ever would have had before. I don't really want to continue eating this way after birth, so hopefully I can go back to my old diet a bit. I'm not morally opposed to eating animals, but I feel better when I have less milk in my diet at least.

 

We have not invested much thought in the meat we buy, which I am starting to think we should. I know conventional farming practices are terrible in this country, so I'm going to start thinking about this and maybe change the meat we buy, if I can get him on board. He's from another country where meat is much more humanely produced, so I don't think he's aware of how bad some of the meat we buy here probably is.

post #34 of 68
Quote:
Originally Posted by BirdieC View Post
 

Gosh I'm so glad you wrote this. I was a vegetarian for a long time for ethical reasons (10 billion land animals raised and slaughtered every year in inhumane conditions), the environment (eating meat is the biggest contributor to greenhouse gas emissions), but I never thought about my health. Instead of eating plant proteins, I just ate carbs and felt sick. So instead of eating plant proteins I started eating meat again. I felt awful for the animals, but I found a way to make peace. I eat cats and dogs. Since millions of healthy cats and dogs are euthanized in shelters each year in the US, I figure their flesh is as good as any cow, pig, or chicken. I feel great and have found a way to quiet my conscience. 

 

I'm guessing your sarcastic post is in criticism of folks posting on this thread?  The points you raise are not from "eating meat", they are from the modern industrial system, created to satisfy people's overconsumption and expectation of cheap and bland.  Methane can be reduced by reducing or removing grain from an undulant's diet.  Of course, reducing meat consumption (and waste!) is imperative.  Most folks posting here are well aware of the ethical implications of industrial meat.  There are still further ethical questions of taking any animal life for food, but that is separate from environmental issues.  Lastly, many of us are unable to rely on vegetable protein due to allergies.  

 

Your post is very troll-ish, but I checked on your other 4 posts, and those are far from, so I'm responding to this when otherwise I probably shouldn't.  

 

Your sarcastic post could have addressed these same issues with grace and intelligence.  As it was, it left excellent, pro-veg arguments out of it.  The ones you mentioned are flimsy, easily refuted points made easier by the tone you brought into this thread.

post #35 of 68

What a great topic! I was a vegetarian for 13 years of my life, starting from the time I was in 9th grade to the time my first child was 2 years old. I learned the hard way that for some people, a vegetarian diet during critical times such as puberty and childbearing can very negative health consequences. When I finally saw a natural health care practitioner who discovered I was allergic to soy and had severe hormonal imbalances and nutritional deficiencies that had caused severe cystic acne, premature aging, depression, and menstrual problems--at this point I threw out the tofu and fake meat and that my diet was messing up my thyroid and hormonal balance, I did a total lifestyle overhaul.  I adapted a few different diets until I found what worked for me--all consisting of whole, organic foods AND meat, and also raw milk, pastured butter, cod liver oil, and probiotics and organic fruits and veggies, but limited grains and no gluten.  That was 7 years ago.  I am now 35 years old, and I believe that my dietary change saved my life.  I believe that if I were still a vegetarian, I would have lost all of my teeth to decay, be plagued with terrible acne, and have horrible menstrual cramps, and have depression and fatigue.  All of those problems I was plagued with earlier in my life have been alleviated by quitting my vegetarian diet! I think it's awesome, and also a testament to the fact that your body does not care about politics or idealism--it just cares about what it needs.

post #36 of 68

Birdie C, Do you live in China? I know that unusual meats are consumed there, including dog.  It's always good to remember that where we've grown up is the culture we adapt to and food is very much about culture.  In many parts of the world, people are starving and will eat anything that they can.  Here in the US, we are very elite and privileged to even have the OPTION of not eating a particular food group and caring more about animals than we care about ourselves.  We are so fortunate to have the options we have.

post #37 of 68

Lamom3girls,

What a nice perspective.  I feel the same as you--I accept what other people do and have no need to judge them.  Each person is different and has different needs.  A veggie diet damaged my health, despite my trying hard to "do it right".  It's too high-glycemic for me and lacks the animal fats I need for hormonal balance.  I need lots of butter and meat to keep things in a healthy range and feel terrible on a diet of vegetables and beans.  It's important that we give each person room to be themselves and have their own journey, like you do. :)

post #38 of 68
Because I like to eat meat and I function better with it. I have cut down to eating meat only once a day though. I used to include meat with all 3 meals. I am eating more raw foods now.
post #39 of 68
I was vegetarian for 14 years and vegan for 2 of those. Not meat once during that time. Very strict. Then I got pregnant and my body DEMANDED meat. Now I still eat meat and feel so much better. I lost the baby weight so fast. I think it's from eating meat. My body needs it. I hadn't eaten meat my whole adult life and was very curvy. Now I'm not, even after baby. I eat a lot of meat now.
post #40 of 68
meat is delicious!!!
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