To veg? Or not to veg?

Happy Belated Bastille Day!!!

Yesterday started with a standard bowl of oats:

Lunch was a standard Righteous Salad:

Except this one had a layer of baked beans on the bottom

A banana for afternoon snack to tide me over to dinner.

and then came dinner 🙂

Yesterday was Bastille Day, so I decided to make something associated with France for dinner. (Note: I LOVE France and most things French). Chicken Cordon Bleu seemed perfect! I also made Ellie Kreiger’s Green Bean Salad.

Delicious! Two changes, I didn’t have parsley, and I used white onion instead of red. This was an awesome and easy side dish! It actually got better as we ate it, and Erm couldn’t get enough!

I don’t want to toot my own horn… but this meal was delicious. Even Erm said “this is the best thing you’ve made in awhile!”

I don’t know if that means I haven’t been cooking well, or this was just THAT good, but I don’t care. The shallot sauce totally made this dish.

(Note: I would not feature this chicken as a “healthy” meal… especially with the sauce 😉 )

So as I was cooking, I was thinking… I can’t remember the last time I cooked chicken. Or pork, for that matter. And as I kept thinking, I realized that I probably only eat meat once or twice a week now. (I’m not counting fish, although I don’t eat that very often any more, either).

A few months ago, I was told about the Blood Type Diet, which says that your blood type and dietary needs are based on where your ancestors lived, etc, etc. I don’t know about the history part, but someone did tell me something that made sense, something along the lines of people with my blood type lacking the acid in our bloodstream and systems to efficiently break down meats, so they turn into fat. (I am A+). That part sounded more scientific and made a little more sense, so I tried it. And without realizing it, I stopped eating meat for most of the time.

Weird! I have always toyed with going vegetarian for ethical reasons. I am such a huge animal lover, and sometimes when I think about meat, it does gross me out. Or I can remember times that I’ve been eating (and enjoying) a cheeseburger and getting nauseous right there in the middle of it. Last year I took a group of kids to volunteer at a farm animal sanctuary and I went vegetarian for almost three weeks without thinking twice about it. But I’ve never been able to stick to it.

I actually have a friend, Demi, who just started eating meat again after three years. She told me she became a vegetarian as a challenge to herself, to see how long she could go without eating meat. Anyone else ever hear of this? I found it fascinating. Demi is a unique and hysterical girl, so I guess it makes sense that she was a vegetarian for a reason I’ve never heard of before. And as she was going through her college graduation festivities, she realized she missed hotdogs, and is back to eating meat. I feel like that’s like giving up drinking for three years and going back for Naddy Ice, but whatever floats your boat. I think her decision and her resolve to stick with it merely for the sake of challenging herself is quite impressive!

Since I stopped eating a lot of meat, I’ve noticed a big change in how I feel. I have more energy, less digestive problems, and I am running faster. I crave chickpeas, beans, eggs, and tofu. Could it be that I’m really not built to be a meat-eater? Or have I just reconditioned my body? Also, there’s the whole food chain thing. Cavemen ate meat, so I’m thinking its pretty natural, but I know vegetarians have an argument for this one, as well, I just don’t know what it is yet.

I know I could give up chicken and pork chops no sweat. Bacon/pork roll/proscuitto/etc… that’s a tough one. Steak… also tough. I still have days here and there when I just want a steak. But even as I type this, I’m conflicted. I would like the reason that I give up meat (even if its not 100% of the time) to be ethical, but it seems that I’m doing it for health reasons, and I feel like a big fake almost-vegetarian. And is being an almost-vegetarian enough to make a difference?

Curious about your thoughts here, bloggies! Are you a vegetarian? Vegan? What are your reasons? If you are a meat-eater, what are your reasons for being carnivorous?

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4 Responses to To veg? Or not to veg?

  1. Emily says:

    I went vegetarian for a few months last year. Honestly, I just wanted to see if I could do it. I ended up eating a lot of cheese. Being a vegetarian/vegan takes a lot of planning and dedication!

    I haven’t eaten red meat in, gosh, I can’t even remember! It has to be around 7 or 8 years. My family had London Broil every once in awhile for dinner — my dad would always under cook it and I ended up hating it! So, I don’t eat red meat simply because I don’t like it. I try to base my diet on things I like, things I’m in the mood to eat, and things that are good for me. I end up eating completely vegetarian some days — just because that’s what sounds good to me that day! Another reason I eat vegetarian is because meat is just so darn expensive sometimes! I try to alternate weeks. One week I’ll buy meat, the next I won’t. On the flip side, being a vegan takes some money as well. Trying to find non-dairy, non meat substitutions for things can add up!

    I’ve experimented with the idea of going completely vegetarian. But, I’m with you. I don’t know that I would be able to give up bacon/pork roll/prosciutto. I actually bought a vegetarian cookbook the other day (clearance at B&N!), again, because I liked the recipes in it. For now, I’m okay with being a semi-vegetarian. I believe sometimes people put too much emphasis on the “rules of being vegetarian”. YOU should eat according to what makes YOU feel best, and don’t create too many rules/restrictions for yourself. Have fun and enjoy your meals!

  2. I am not officially a vegetarian, but like you, I really only eat meat a handful of times per month. But honestly, that’s been most of my life – I was never a big meat eater, even as a kid (before I knew anything about nutrition or ethics or anything, really!). So your post really has me thinking, is my body or blood type what makes me naturally gravitate away from meat? Or is it really just a personal preference? I’m really not sure!

  3. I’m a vegetarian. Stopped eating meat in January. I watched Food, Inc. and just couldn’t handle eating animals anymore (sorry if that’s too graphic). It was an easy transition. I never ate that much meat to begin with. I didn’t realize everything that went into being a vegetarian when I first started out. I still eat cheese and eggs. You have to, like Caitlin from HTP says, find your gray area. If you haven’t already, check out her post on ethical eating. It’s really helpful!

  4. proudpatriot07 says:

    I found your blog on the fit blog chat.

    I was a vegetarian. Not a strict one, as I didn’t scrutinize everything I ate for any sort of animal byproducts, etc, and I ate eggs & dairy products. I now eat seafood occasionally, so I guess I’m really a pescetarian now. But, for the longest time, I didn’t eat any meats or seafood. I was diagnosed with severe anemia two months ago, and I tried to start eating meat again, but well… I didn’t WANT it. It was weird. I just didn’t see where eating it made me feel any better.

    Never heard of the blood type diet, but being a vegetarian is a lifestyle change. Here in the South, it’s not something that’s embraced. I’ve been fussed at, tons of people told me that my vegetarianism “caused” my anemia. I’ve gone to plenty of church gatherings, family gatherings, work functions… where there was almost nothing I could eat. So your post really has me thinking- there’s gotta be something evolutionary that makes me NOT want meat, otherwise I wouldn’t given in completely by now out of desperation.

    Amy Lauren

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