The Switch: Food Rules.

12 Dec
Growing up, I was always a picky eater. Always. I had my foods that I really enjoyed and ate plenty of them. You could say I found my own ways to get out of eating meat. I just, didn’t care for it. It wasn’t that someone was telling me “meat is bad for you”, but it was my choice. Once I hit my teen years, I started to become a bit more focused on what I was eating and why. Of course, I could just sit in front of the TV and eat a box of Cheez-Its without even thinking. Sometimes, when you’re bored (I do this too), I eat mindlessly. Rummaging through the cabinets late at night, looking for something to eat that will satisfy the so called munchies, but what I really needed to do was to stop and listen to what I really wanted. More times than not, what I really wanted was something healthier, but it was figuring out what to have and how to put it together.

Over the past few years, my diet has switched. Not because I knew I had to change, but because I was changing. The focus changed. Because I grew up eating very limited meat products, I decided to become a Vegetarian mid-2003. Why? The thought, just the thought… of what happens to the food I eat before it hits my plate concerned me. It still does. I didn’t become a Vegetarian for political or religious reasons, but because I wanted a cleaner diet that didn’t include animal products. I wanted to do my own research, so I picked up a lovely cookbook and a book on Vegetarianism. I knew that the switch would be difficult. However, I kept eggs and dairy in my diet. I included fish. I did what worked for me. But it was really hard. It was really hard going out to eat, and explaining to the waitress that I was a Vegetarian. Feeling embarrassed, I said that I eat a primarily plant based diet and don’t include animal products. I mean, really?

Currently, I am not a Vegetarian. Yes, I do not eat a lot of meat and try to avoid it at all costs. I love my fruits/veggies, whole grains and healthy fats. I always refer to Healthy Tipping Point for “inspiration” that a Vegetarian diet can work, and while it may not be the easiest thing, it’s a choice that either I decide to make or not. There’s always the concern that if I’m out at a family gathering, that there wouldn’t be anything for me to eat. If I decide to make the switch again, I’d love to show others that a meat-free diet can be luscious, luxe and good tasting – and that I just don’t eat veggies!

If you are a Vegetarian, how did you switch?

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