Why I Stopped Eating Meat.

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On one of my past TheVeganKind posts, 'The Lazy Curls' As Told By Chlxe left a comment saying she'd like to read how I became a non-meat eater, I don't think I've ever dedicated a full post as to why and how I survive, lol. Honestly it's something I'm normally asked as meat eaters are intrigued as to why? Which is cool because it gives someone else another perspective of a conscious lifestyle.

I had tried a couple of times to give up meat, The Simpsons 'Lisa The Vegetarian' resonated with me but was unsure how to do it and the bacon just kept luring me back. Until late 2008, I was on Google searching Goats, as you do, and saw a skinned kid - for me that was it. My nan didn't believe me; certain I'd crumble for a bacon sandwich. Weeks later, I was still not eating meat, I would eat a fair bit of seafood and dairy within my diet but I was eating so much prawns until I was turned off. I started to cut out milk slowly and replace it with almond milk but now I don't drink it, more out of choice. I started to notice with my body that if I had too much dairy, my stomach didn't appreciate it, so limitations were being set upon me. For me it wasn't a challenge to give up meat as it wasn't too prominent in my life, the cheese - yes. Gradually it was, limiting cheese where I use to sprinkle it on most meals or have a melted cheese sandwich or pizza. My body could only take a certain amount otherwise my body would expel not long after if I had too much. I’ve looked for vegan cheese before, I certainly don’t get a huge amount of grams of it like you do in the diary alternative but I’m still on the hunt but I don’t eat much of it anymore, the exclusion is getting there so it’s not been without it’s challenges somewhere.

Many become vegetarians or vegans for a few reasons - inhumane treatment to animals, diet, environment. Mine was for the first reason, my love of animals overtook my love of food. Growing up I wasn't much of a meat eater but I did eat it, mostly chicken or bacon and if I ate out, chicken would be a choice, I knew no other way. One thing I've come across is a lot of ignorance, ignorance stems from not understanding and a lot of people along with ignorance. They pre-judge your choice, you're a PETA fanatic, tree hugger, strange because you've gone against the 'norm'. Also some have no respect or a judgment to say let's agree to disagree. I continuously come across those people, you'll mention the words vegetarian or vegan and they'll laugh and question why I've chosen to eat that way. No matter the answer, most will dismiss and disrespect.

This occurred just the other week when someone told me, "You lack iron & protein because you don't eat meat", Then they ask the insulting question as to how I was raised because I couldn't have grown up in a Jamaican household if I don't eat meat. "You have to take the vitamins when you could just eat meat."

So why do meat eaters take vitamins?

If they researched they'd notice that soybeans, lentils, quinoa, chickpeas, pinto beans, rye, oatmeal, green vegetables, kidney beans, figs and apricots are rich sources of iron. Corn, green peas, kale, sweetcorn, spinach & more are high sources of protein.
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I juice frequently, therefore I’m getting vitamins, antioxidants and more in my large tumbler and it can act as a meal replacement for me or to eat with a meal it fills me up. I’ve detoxed before, you can read that here. You can find in-store meat alternatives Quorn now do vegan options as well as vegetarian. A quick way is to find the V on labels, it’ll say suitable for vegetarians or suitable for vegans – some don’t I’m still questioning Heinz Tomato Ketchup, I read the ingredients and wonder, why no V? I like to check this blog for UK vegan food in supermarkets: The Vegan Womble. I do suggest if possibly eating fresh and cooking your own meals, so that you know exactly what's in the food and how much etc. I always feel there's a good vegetarian / vegan and bad vegetarian / vegan lol and on my lazy days I really can be bad and ready meals and then I wonder where that extra few lbs have crept in. I've noticed that a few blogs I now regularly visit have some amazing recipes that make me want to cook, Becca at Amuse Your Bouche, she's got vegetarian recipes I love. Hungry Healthy Happy, on Dannii's recipe page she has a section for vegetarians and vegans and anytime I read her blog it makes me want to cook & eat which is good because it's inspiring. Celery and Cupcakes, Jemma has a mixture of smoothies and salads that always look colourful and appealing. That for me is a bonus - because I eat with my eyes first! This is also why I support TheVeganKind because for those wanting to try or already are vegetarians/vegans it gives you a chance to discover new brands & products.

I don't understand why meat eaters are so offended by those who choose otherwise? Just with other things, preconceived judgement is at fault, people do it when others choose to believe or live differently to them, whether it's religion, sexuality or your personal views. I have had people who have respected my choice and have said while eating they won't eat meat in front of me -which is a nice gesture, I always tell them, I respect your dietary choice & it doesn't bother me. I made a conscious choice to try & live a different diet but it doesn’t make me a different person.
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