Meat free meals are becoming more popular all over the world. South Africa is a bit slow but we are getting there. People are opting for meat-free meals more often for whether it’s just one meal or a complete vegetarian or vegan lifestyle. As a vegetarian myself, I thought it would be cool to share some of my experiences. Here are 10 random facts about my meat free lifestyle.
1. I went vegetarian in June 2011. I am an ovo-lacto vegetarian which means I don’t eat meat of any animal: chicken, cow, sheep, fish, birds, etc. I do eat animal by-products such as eggs, dairy, and honey.
2. I still eat my favourite junk foods, although they are a little less “junk” now since the veg options are healthier. I get protein from soya based products, mushroom based products, beans, lentils, veggies, dairy products, and eggs.
3. Although being vegetarian is easy for me now. The most difficult thing starting out, was dealing with people. Deciding what to eat becomes easy quickly and it becomes easier as time goes on since meat-free products become more popular as the years go by. Some people become defensive when they hear that I don’t eat meat, which is strange. Some people are rude. Some people suddenly become nutrition experts or they’ll ask if I hate humans. Most people are nice and they will ask questions because they are just curious. Some people are too scared to try something new. Some people don’t want to know where their food comes from, which is sad. Right now though, I’m not too bothered about what people think of what I eat. It’s got nothing to do with them any way.
4. My favourite fast food is Panarottis margarita pizza with avocado and feta. I love adding the complimentary garlic and parmesan on top of it and I occasionally add sun-dried tomatoes too.
5. I found it very easy to cut meat out. I never had any cravings or any strange symptoms afterwards. It just felt natural to me.
6. My main reasons for going veg are animal welfare, the environment, health, and spirituality. Animal welfare: I believe natural behaviour in animals should be encouraged. With factory farming especially the animals are treated with cruelty. They live in fear, terror, and pain from birth to slaughter. Environment: A meat free diet produces lower carbon emissions than a meat filled diet. Health: Without meat, I cut a lot of cholesterol and saturated fats out of my diet. Spirituality: I want to cause the less cruelty and suffering in the world especially with animals and the environment so I think this is one way to do that. I do try to live my this quote from the Dalai Lama: My religion is kindness.
7. The last meat product I ate was on the 31st of May 2011. It was pork chops. They tasted terrible and I think it’s because of all the research I did on farming. Meat didn’t seem appealing or appetising to me any longer.
8. I found that I slept better after going veg and I am never in the bathroom longer than 6 minutes tops! (TMI I know, but it’s a bonus)
9. I am quite a lazy vegetarian. I love carbs and usually take the easy route when it comes to meals. I do however cook a lot of my own meals.
10. I do know that the dairy and egg industries are cruel as well. Although I have cut down on these products but I still consume them. I’m not in a position to cut them out yet. I respect vegans (no animal products) although many vegans have been very disrespectful towards me and my lifestyle. They are against my consumption of dairy and eggs. I’ve been called lazy, heartless, ignorant, etc. Everyone is entitled to their own beliefs but to ridicule people who have different views and lifestyles to you is wrong. I will respect you regardless of your diet and beliefs so I respect the same in return.
There you go. Congratulations to you if you read the whole thing 🙂
Here is a 25 second video of some of the meals I ate for the month of September. I made it using the 1 Second A Day app. It’s 25 days of September where I took a 1 second long video of 1 meal for each day. Some are photos some are videos. At one point there is a photo of a raw pizza haha! I put it in the oven before I ate it, just so you know!