A few weeks ago, I decided to take, what some would consider, an almost drastic step and try out a semi vegetarian lifestyle. I wrote about this when I started, but deleted it because I was a little unsure about it. After a few weeks of trying out different things and seeing how I feel about it, I thought now would be a better time to write about it.
What made me decide to do this? Each year, my family participates in the church fast during the first 40 days of every year and usually the one thing that I give up is meat. After the 40 days are up, I usually cut down on the amount of meat (especially red meat) that I eat and usually don't miss it. I mean, yes, there are days when I am seriously craving a steak or something, but that's anyone who is raised with the idea that most meals are not complete with some kind of meat.
Like a lot of people who consider this lifestyle, I have done and am still doing plenty of research on this, trying to do it the right way. Am I giving up meat entirely? Absolutely not, but I am cutting down on my intake. In the time I have started, I have noticed that I don't crave meat the way I used to and when I do eat it, it's almost a treat. I have also noticed that if I overdo it, I have gotten sick. Who would have ever thought that something that most families were raised on could do this?
When I first told my parents that I was leaning toward trying this, the first thing they asked was how did I plan on getting my necessary nutrients, like protein. (This is after they asked if I was dieting.) Please know that this was one of the first few questions that I asked when I first started and have found that if you really pay attention to what you eat everyday, you can find it quite a few items, some that you really like, are good sources of it. And its not like you have to stick with just salads and vegetables, although, this is not a bad thing. There are various meat substitutes that are almost as good as the real thing and a lot of recipes that are geared toward people who want to branch out.
So far I have learned two things. Being a semi vegetarian has forced me to consider food that I wouldn't normally and have found that it's not so bad. Meat substitutes, such as Boca burgers and "chicken" sandwiches, which are soy products and a great source of protein, are almost as good as their meat counterparts. The different veggie companies have even shocked me with their combinations and their ability to make people, like me, want to try their products. The second thing being that, unlike a lot vegetarians, I cannot give up dairy or eggs. I get that they are animal products, but I'm giving up meat...isn't that enough?
There was a third thing that I have learned, but I have decided that it is soooo inappropriate for this blog and I'm sure you would think less of me.
As I start this, I have decided to share what I learn and the different recipes that I try on here, hoping that someone else can learn from any mistakes that I may make along the way or even try out the dishes that I may. Or even offer some words of advice.
So, here we go!