Lately, I’ve been reading up on becoming a vegetarian. I always do a lot of research before I make a life decision. Case in point, I’ve been thinking about becoming vegetarian since the end of the summer, but I’ve only recently decided to do it. At this point, I’ve been vegetarian for about a month and it’s going really well. It’s a lot easier than I thought it would be, and it helps that my awesome husband has decided to join me on this adventure. Nowadays, there are a lot of cold pastas, burritos, veggie wraps, fruit, soups, and salads coming out of our kitchen. The hardest thing has just been getting out of the habit of centering a meal around chicken or beef and finding creative ways to approach a new meal. But my reasons behind this life change, my love of a good adventure, and my increased health make it so worth it!
Reason number 1: I watched the film Food, inc. I actually didn’t even finish the movie the first time I saw it because I knew if I did I would never eat meat again! But I ended up finishing it eventually, and it raised some moral dilemmas for me. I realized that by eating most chicken and beef, I would be supporting an industry that feeds out of the hand of a consumer culture. Most of these animals are held in feeding bins with no room to move and fed a corn diet simply because they will grow fatter and faster. The few huge corporations that have contracts with several small local farmers get to produce faster and bulk up their wallets fatter, while these animals undergo a horrible way of life and the farmers are paid to keep them in these conditions. Anyways, after learning about this I decided I couldn’t ethically eat meat coming from these conditions and be a part of the culture that demands it.
Reason number 2: I come with a family history of gestational diabetes, type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and early heart attacks. After learning that I could reduce my risk of developing these things myself by even just getting rid of meat in my diet, I was set. I also saw Christianna Pierce’s blog Elegant Simple Vegan, where she posted an interview where Bill Clinton and his doctors discuss his plant-based diet and his reduction of his heart disease! I realized that if I work so hard to stay active and keep a healthy lifestyle anyways to avoid health issues, why not take one more step?
Reason number 3: I believe whole-heartedly in simple living. To me, that means not supporting the huge corporations that monopolize an industry by being a part of their consumer base. I can’t be a part of what allows them to raise their animals unethically and force farmers to work with them or be put out of business. It’s the same reason I work for a small hair salon instead of my previous corporate chain. It’s the same reason I’m shopping at thrift stores and starting to make some of my own stuff. I also believe in living on just enough, not in excess. So, by cutting out the meat in my diet, I don’t support wasteful corporations that produce way too much. If I am going to live a simple life, I have to live it in all areas!
Ignorance is not bliss, it’s blindly following what others are telling you what to do. I would challenge you to check out these resources for more information, and learn about how we can change this industry.
The film, Food Inc.
The film, Food Matters
This post from the blog, Minimalist Adventures
This post from the blog, Elegant Simple Vegan