This week I celebrated one year of being a Vegetarian. And its been anything but boring. I blogged at the start of my journey here.
Some of you may think there really isn’t much to celebrate. Some of you may even ask, “did you celebrate with a big juicy steak?” (I loved that one). But for me, there is much to be proud of.
It all started years ago when I read Diet for a New America written by the heir to the Baskin Robbins estate. He told the truth about different food industries and the role that sugar and meat is playing in our diets and the hold some of these companies have on us. Then I read this one and then this one and of course this one. Oh and how could I forget THIS. I love the role that self education can play in our lives. You reach a point in your life when you may have something that really interests you and you do the research, the ground work to learn and then those tidbits that you learn are the things that really stick with you.
I have also watched movies like Food, Inc. and The Beautiful Truth which I highly recommend. They are beyond words and if they don’t make you think twice about the meat and other animal products that you put into your body, then probably nothing will.
There are so many reasons to be a Vegetarian for some it is for health reasons, other moral reasons and for some, they just can’t see their way too it. That’s OK – I’m not here to preach on the issue. I do have strong feelings and I try to be diplomatic when talking about it. I just hope I can educate people to see the health of their bodies and their environment in a new way.
For me it boils down to my “Top 5 Reasons why I became a Vegetarian.”
5. I lost 11 pounds without really trying too hard. Did you know that on average Vegetarians are 20 pounds lighter than meat-eaters? I’m just sayin… it is the New Year after all.
4. I am less likely to develop things like heart disease, high blood pressure and certain cancers like colon cancer living on a plant based diet. A Vegetarian diet is one full of fiber. Meat is full of saturated animal fat that bogs you down. I am lighter and healthier eating this way.
3. As a Vegetarian I can do my small part in saving the world. Did you know that it take 16 pounds of grain to produce just 1 pound of meat? In the United States alone we have enough food to feed the entire planet and put an end to hunger. But instead, we are feeding our cattle, our chickens, and yes, even our fish with our grain. We have a thirst for meat. Also, according to the journal of Soil and Water, one acre of land could produce 50,000 pounds of tomatoes, 40,000 pounds of potatoes, 30,000 pounds of carrots and just 250 pounds of beef. You do the math!
2. I’m saving a ton of money on groceries. Yes, my boys still eat meat (I’m workin’ on them as we speak), but all in all, our grocery bill has been slashed by quite a bit. The average household by going Vegetarian can save $4,000 a year!
1. It was a challenge for my health. I took being a Vegetarian on as a health challenge after reading about how eating more whole foods can really have a positive affect on your body and prevent so many diseases. I was also struggling with a lot of PMS issues and thought I would see if there was anything to the idea that changing my diet might be the answer. After 30 days of feeling really great, and not missing meat at all, I continued it for 45 days, then 3 months and now one year. I can happily report that I do not have ONE symptom of PMS left and I have more energy and feel better than I have ever felt.
Not only that, but I am running better and lighter! I have more energy and am on track to run a 25K in May. This is no small feat for me. I could never have done this in previous years. Even after having a night out eating more food than usual, drinking wine and having a good time, I still feel better than ever because the meat is not causing my body to spend all its energy trying to digest it instead of giving me a good run! Check out this fellow blogger’s website – he is amazing and runs long long distances on a plant based diet. www.nomeatathlete.com I am always inspired reading his posts! You can even sign up for his free e-course on what a Vegetarian diet could do for your running. Its well worth it. Check out this post for more info to get you started running on a Vegetarian diet.
I hope by my actions, my health and what I write I can inspire some of you to make a change in the new year and eat less meat. You could try meat-less Mondays or do Vegetarian for 30 days like I did. It will challenge you in a good way and you just might get hooked.
Your body and our planet will thank you.
Any other “happy herbivores” out there? How did you get started? How has it changed your health for the better? Any meat eaters out there inspired to eat less meat in the new year?