For a long time, I was nervous to talk about my diet on this platform. I wasn’t comfortable talking about it because I know how passionate people are about food choices, especially when animal welfare is involved. I kept my food life private throughout the blogging journey until now. That’s because over the last few months, I’ve started transitioning to a vegetarian diet.
Growing up, I was the pickiest eater. Really the only things I ate were carbs, cheese, and anything fried. As hard as my parents tried, I never once ate a vegetable or fruit at dinner. I was always the last one at the dinner table trying to figure out how to somehow hide my green beans under my pork chop. Luckily, we had a yellow lab who was willing to take one for the team.
I finally started to eat (very bland) salads in college, more so out of necessity to combat the unhealthier lifestyle I was living at that point. Since college, I’ve slowly expanded my palate to include veggies and even the occasional fruit. However, I never truly loved meat. Unless of course it was fried.
So why did I keep eating meat? I was convinced I had to. I thought that in order to have a healthy diet, I needed meat, starch, fruits, and veggies. It’s the Midwestern way! Then, I wrote an article about saving the elephants and something shifted inside me. How could I be writing about saving dogs, cats, and elephants, but not worried about the animals that are on my plate? I started going to Whole Foods and buying sustainably and responsibly raised meat. Still, a part of me felt “off” in some way, my values weren’t aligning with my actions.
And that’s how my curiosity led me to the path I’m on now. A quick simple search of high-protein meat alternatives showed me that I can have my protein and eat it too. To be honest, it was scarier labeling myself as a Vegetarian than it was giving up meat. What would my friends and family think? Would they roll their eyes and be quick to judge or would they be supportive and excited for me? How can someone who’s been (trying) to eat meat their whole life suddenly consider themselves meat-free?
It was that question that worried me the most. After 29 years of eating meat, I felt like a poser claiming to be a vegetarian. But I think that’s sort of the coolest part about it. I heard something recently resonated with me, “Your past doesn’t define your future.” I can and am allowed to change my lifestyle to align with my values. And it feels good. I’m sure there will be things that I miss, but so far, I can’t say I miss meat.
When I began this blogging journey, I hoped I would impact other lives, both two and four-legged. What I didn’t see coming was the impact it would have on my own.
Have you tried a vegetarian or vegan diet? What advice would you have for me? Let me know in the comments below!
Back at the Anti-Cruelty Society and it feels so good. Meet Ziva, this black and white pup is so loving. As you can see. I also love her markings around her mouth because it almost looks like she’s grinning. She’s about 6 years old and her adoption fee has been sponsored! For more information about Ziva, click here.
The second cutie reminds me of the dog from Little Rascals. This is Murphy and he’s about two years old. He’s definitely a strong boy and would need help with his leash skills, but he’s very food motivated. For more information about Murphy, click here.
I got these red for Christmas and I’ve been dying to show them off. They’re faux leather which keeps my cruelty-free self happy. I’ve had this love sweatshirt for maybe six years and I have yet to be able to part with it. I’ve linked the booties and similar tops below.