I am having much the same evolution. I read "The China Study" and tried going vegan without success. It was too big of a change. But coupling that with reading Polan, watching Food, Inc. and reading a book called "If It's Not Food Don't Eat It," and all of these influences are sending me down the road to vegan and whole foods. This time I'm letting it be a gradual process. I don't cook meat anymore, because I can't handle raw meat, and I'm reaching the point where I'm grossed out by cooked meat, too.
The thing is, I love vegan food, and I don't miss the meat. It is just sometimes so much easier to eat meat in this little west Texas town. Easier for me, I mean, not for the animal!
What made me make a lifestyle change was watching Food, Inc. and discovering where my food actually came from. The inhumane slaughterhouses, the animal living conditions, the antibiotics and steriods that are being pumped into these animals and in turn pumped into us... Watching that film made me really stop and think about exactly what I was eating. The last three months since switching has really been a big change for me. I can truly say that apart from sheading tears, since I have stopped eating meat I have had no headaches whatsoever. Now, during the last month I have started to eat seafood, mainly salmon, tuna, shrimp and crab. I am still undecided whether this is an overall healthy choice because I do worry about the overfishing, if you will, and the mercury, amongst other things. So I try to get wild caught, if at all possible. I have entertained thoughts of someday returning to the meat-eating world but am still undecided. IF I do, it would only be organic, free-range and grass-fed. Apart from watching Food, Inc. I also read the book, Master Your Metabolism (Jillian Michaels) Now, I am not saying that everything she said is golden and I'm not her biggest fan but it uncovered a lot of truths about the chemicals and pesticides that we're eating by way of foods and processed foods. It's sickening to think about what our society deems as acceptable. We simply do everything because everyone else does it and don't see the huge side effects that these things are really having on our environment and our lives. P.S. If you refer to meats as dead animal flesh, as I do, it makes it suddenly less appetizing..... ew.
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I have the same problem, and as a result I am eating almost no meat at all, and I think that will become no meat period in the near future. I think that being grossed out by raw meat is for me an instinct that I need to avoid it.
I've been vegetarian for almost 10 years now, but I would never tell anyone else that they should be vegetarian--except my fiance hehe. I feel like it's a personal decision and there are pros and cons to both sides. I think that choosing less meat, eating only sustainable meats that were raised and slaughtered humanely (and locally) is totally possible and makes a big difference in our health and the health of the environment. I am even open-minded to the idea that someday I may eat meat again, such as if I raised my own chickens. However, I can't imagine touching or eating meat, even if it was the happiest chicken on the planet who died of natural causes--simply b/c it seems so foreign to me now. But I digress...
For me, the decision was based on a few things. 1- The environment. Raising meat takes a lot of resources and results in a lot of environmental damage. There are ways around this, such as choosing local, sustainably raised meats, but that is NOT easy to do, often costs a lot more, and still doesn't mean there is zero environmental degradation as a result. I am also concerned about overfishing and the imbalance that causes to the ecosystem, so I choose not to eat any seafood (especially b/c seafood is far from local where I live).
2- Animal welfare. I am an animal lover and it simply bothers me to think that an animal would lose its life just to feed me--especially when I don't know what it's living conditions were like. The conditions of probably 95% of animals raised to feed humans are pretty appalling in terms of disease, discomfort, abuse and more.
3- Health. I'm not saying meat is unhealthy, but I do believe that abstaining from or limiting meat is better for us. With so many plant based proteins readily available, I do not need meat in order to be healthy. That coupled with the reasons above means I can still be healthy and have a lot of great tasting food without choosing meat.
Those are the main factors for me. I'd say environmentalism is the biggest.
I have had similar issues for the past few years. I actually have my husband do the chicken trimming and cutting, kinda grosses me out. This is not to say that I've stopped eating meat. What I have tried to do is eat "happy" animal meat that are raised and handled humanely. I also try to honor the animal that has given it's life for me.
I've stopped eating a lot of meat in the past few years. I'm basically down to just chicken, salmon and shrimp. And I buy free range/ line caught 95% of the time.
My problem is, recently, I've been kinda grossed out by raw meat. It really bothers me if I can see some sort of link to the actual animal. Especially anything containing a bone, skin or a roasting chicken, that kind of thing. This is a really new development for me. I used to be just fine cooking chicken. But now I'm having a hard time touching it raw or eating it if I had to touch it while it was raw.
Should I try going vegetarian? Is it just a phase I should stick out until it passes? I already eat mostly vegetarian meals, so it wouldn't be that hard but I feel like maybe it's a little weird that I just started feeling creeped out by meat when I've been eating it my whole life.
What made you decide to stop eating meat (if you're vegetarian)? What would you do in my position?
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