I became a vegetarian when I was 12 years old. On our annual trip to Eastern Washington, my 6th grade best friend and I made a pact. After one more hot dog, we were cutting out meat. Cold turkey.
She lasted one week. I lasted 13 years.
I have fallen off the vegetarian band wagon every once in awhile. I had a few years where I ate fish. Two years where I even dabbled in chicken on a random occasion.
When I started my vegetarian adventure, I was a pre-teen. This means my diet consisted mainly of hot and spicy cheez-its (holy god, they’re addicting), saltine crackers and apples.
It was going well for me.
Although my food choices weren’t the healthiest, I knew that I would never put another piece of pork or beef in my body. At the ripe old age of 13, I discovered Meet your Meat.
Say what you will about education via shock and gore, this movie changed me. As an impressionable young thing who jumped into vegetarianism on a whim, seeing where meat came from was shocking.
It is evident in these videos (regardless of your belief in animals having the intelligence to understand) that what’s happening in our food system is horrible. No living creature should be treated like that. For me, that’s the bottom line
Knowing that was where the majority of our meat came from, I wanted no part of it.
And now here I am, 25 years old and I eat a mainly vegan (once in awhile an egg from Vital Farms isn’t going to hurt me), whole foods diet. Stepping away from cheese was big deterrent from vegan-ism, but as a person that eats nutritional yeast by the spoon full, I get by.
In a country where obesity and heart disease are on the rise, I am kind to my body. I partake in morning runs and long sessions of stretching. I spend hours in the kitchen making nice with kale and sweet potato enchiladas. I have a happy stomach that enjoys endless amounts of fruits and vegetables.
Tomorrow is national Food Day. A call for us to shake it up, change our relationship with our meal. It’s a call for us to look at our current system, our current policies, and see that this isn’t sustainable. We can’t live in a country where childhood obesity is the norm and the food that is most readily available is packed so full of sugar and preservatives there isn’t anything “food” about it.
I don’t eat animals. That is my part of being a conscious eater. 13 years strong and I don’t see myself eating meat anytime soon. I get that this strict diet isn’t for everyone, but if you are at all curious, give it a try. You may be surprised at just how wonderful your body feels.
Happy food day.
There is something so satisfying about a giant plate of pasta smothered in pesto. I was so sad when I thought about losing that from my diet.
Silly me, just take out the Parmesan add some nutritional yeast and you’re set.
This recipe is from Vegan Spoonful, just another wonderful vegan blog for my to get inspiration.
This pesto is good for pasta, for smearing on some bread or you can freeze it for later. So garlicky, so good.
- 1 large bunch of basil (3 cups loosely packed)
- 2-3 large cloves garlic
- 6 Tbsp raw pine nuts
- 3/4 – 1 tsp salt, or to taste
- 6 Tbsp extra virgin olive oil
- 1/4 cup nutritional yeast
Combine all the ingredients in a food processor until creamy and perfect. Commence devouring at unladylike speeds.