Whats it like being a vegetarian?

Discussion in 'Vegetarian' started by legal_rasta, Jan 19, 2009.

  1. legal_rasta

    legal_rasta Member

    I just watched thoes slaughter videos and that shits extremely fucked up. At the moment i want to be a vegetarian but my family eats meat sooo. Idk what i would do for dinner and stuff. What are the benefits of being a vegetarian, besides not taking part in the slaughter of animals?
  2. Hi legal

    Ive been veg for 8 years and vegan for 3. I can assure you its awesome. It was a lot different at first, a bit of a struggle, and you discover some idiots can treat you differently if they find out. But ultimately none of it matters because if its what you want to do, you feel so much better in yourself, you feel good that youre making a small positive difference, and your health really can improve if you do it right

    Veggie is pretty easy. Its just a case of cutting out the meat, and products like gelatine. You have to get a good variety of new foods or you may get pesky cravings for a while as your body adjusts. But actually theyre not that common. I think I only got them as I was 13 and didnt have a clue about nutrition back then

    About living with meateaters, I made the decision to go veg at 12. I didnt quite succeed until I turned 13. But from that day onwards I cooked my own meals. Im sure your family wont mind buying you a few different things if you explain your reasoning. You could even pay a little towards the food. But anyway at 12 I began getting my own shopping and cooking simple meals like stirfrys, and infact it was easy, and fun! I felt much more independent and like it was a healthier way to grow up without relying on my mum, and I could do what I wanted with my food

    Being veg is great, theres a LOT to eat, food doesnt revolve around dead animals like a lot of people think it does

    Then of course there is the added benefit of knowing youre helping to reduce the negative impact of pollution on the planet, cutting out a lot of nasty saturated fat, chemicals etc, and of course saving lives and helping reduce suffering

    If its what you want, I say go for it

    Good luck
  3. legal_rasta

    legal_rasta Member

    ahh. yeah. I was suposed to not eat meat but I kind of ate meat for lunch anyway (charlies philly cheese steak...). I usually buy lunch at school and they only have vegetarian stuff like once every two weeks. What do you do for protien? and I like jello... I forgot about that. But im gonna try not to drink milk too. And hah. well im not a very good cook. All I know how to make is like, eggs, grilled cheese, and soup.
  4. Tofu + tomato based pasta sauce + Parmesan cheese + YUM.

    But in my case it wasn't nearly as much of a lifestyle change as I thought it would be. It's just ordering the VeggieBurger at BK rather than the Whopper, or some similar choice like that. As for the family, my husband is an omnivore (I promised that I wouldn't make him go with me on this.). We experimented with recipes to find vegetarian dishes that we both like, or can have the meat cooked on the side and added as desired. We also, due to work and school, do not always follow the same eating schedules. These days, he makes Hamburger Helper for himself while I'm at school and doesn't feel guilty about eating it all and not sharing. I have a cafeteria steamed veggie dish or Taco Hell sans beef. Any Taco Hell dish can be ordered without meat! If nothing else, eat the veggie parts of the meal and hardboil an egg for protein or munch a handful of nuts. You can't really expect them to cater to you for this. You'll have the bulk of the work.

    Yes, there are idiots. I do still like meat, and miss my favorites, but I can no longer digest it. Many of my companions still rant at me, assuming that I did it for animal rights reasons. This is the most common reason, and it did play a small part, but my choice was made for my own health. I felt depressed and just biologically wrong after eating meat, so I stopped. I still wear leather as a byproduct of the meat industry, and I still cook meat. However, I've noticed that the first thing anyone I know does when I tell them I'm veggie is to start describing their favorite meat dishes in almost obscene detail.

    "I could never do that, I like rare steak smothered in mushroom sauce and brown gravy too much. My wife knows just how to marinate it in (insert goo here) and I make the gravy out of bacon grease and . . . " If I begin to object to this, because I remember and miss these dishes, I become the self-righteous PETA fiend with the hypocritical leather jacket and boots. My friends are the worst ones, because they start up every time I order a meat-free dish. I'm going to start losing friends soon over this.
  5. homeschoolmama

    homeschoolmama Senior Member

    I've been vegetarian for 3+ years now, and while parts of it were tough, on the whole it wasn't quite as big a change as I thought it would be either. I fretted about protein, and had a tough time finding substitutes for just a few of my favorite foods but the decision & sticking to it (other than when I discovered something had "hidden meat" in it) wasn't all that hard.

    It really does boil down to finding substitutes to what "everyone else" is eating that you enjoy, and will keep your diet balanced without causing you or your family too much stress. A lot of what I do in my omni-family is create meals where everyone eats the same thing... stir fry, pizza, tortillas... but the meat part can be cooked in a separate pan without any extra effort & added at the table so we're all happy without having to create two different meals. Well that, and, because I'm the mama & can do this we only have meat twice weekly - and my husband cooks it just as often as not for me ;)

    As for the benefits? I developed allergies to most meats before giving up & going veggie, but other than not getting sick every time I eat I have also noticed that I get sick less often (about half as often with colds/flu/bronchitis symptoms) and when I DO get sick I'll only be ill for 2-3 days versus the 7-10 days I used to be sick. Sure, that COULD be coincidence... but the change was rather well-timed & has now held for over 3 years so I rather doubt it. One other thing - I don't know about your family, but I have a family history of diabetes & am deathly afraid of needles... a vegetarian diet, by it's nature, is supposed to reduce the chances of becoming diabetic. If I had it to do again, I think I'd make the switch just for that!

    Good luck :) There are some "fun" road-bumps as you learn... I had to re-learn how to make gravy, discover that grilled mushrooms tasted good with ketchup, and that my yogurt actually had fish-parts in it. (gag!) I'm sure you'll find your own set of road-bumps, but the people on here are VERY understanding & helpful! They've answered every single one of my silly, repetitive questions without tossing me out on my ear & I'm sure they'd do the same for you.
  6. legal_rasta

    legal_rasta Member

    Thanks for the responses. Im not sure what ill do. Maby find some vegetarian dishes online or something and tell my mom to make them. My extended family has alot of vegetarians so when we have family get togethers theres always vegetarian food like stuffed cabbage... So there is still like regular food just no meat.
  7. drumminmama

    drumminmama Super Moderator Staff Member Super Moderator

    Brother, at 16, you can cook!
    My son's been cooking since he was 11 or so, unaided. (Ok, yeah, I'm usually in the next room for consultations)
    Look for Starving Student's Vegetarian Cookbook at a library (you'll move beyond it pretty fast, so I don't recommend buying a copy, unless you want to hand it along).
    Simple things to make are greens:
    a southern staple when I was a kid and should be elsewhere, thin slice a passel of collards/ beet greens/ kale (I like to remove stems) add sliced onions and garlic and cook down for 30-45 minutes, or steam for about 15. add pepper sauce and enjoy.
    I've used leftover greens in other dishes, from lasagna to enchiladas to burritos (not so good there).
    Learn a few soup bases, how to cook beans at your altitude (pressure works best above 5000 ft), rice and pasta and you are set to be healthy.

    then there is looking at what really is going on the plates at your dinner table. what sides does your family eat, and how are they prepared?
    Typically, a chunk of critter also has a starch (rice, potatoes, pasta) and some veggies.
    To start, skip the chunk o' critter, adding some extra veggies and some fat (as you eat a lot as meat now, and you are used to high amounts).
    Fats can be olive oil, dairy foods, nut butters and others.
    You might actually eat more volume of food without meat.

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