Category Archives: Eating

Day 18 – How I Became a Vegetarian

smoothie

One of my go-to veggie meals. Protein and fruit smoothie.

I try not to be one of those “annoying” vegetarians. I typically don’t flat out refuse a restaurant because the only veggie option is literally a side of vegetables. If someone is ordering lunch, I ask if they don’t mind getting a vegetarian option, but I’m not a diva about it if there isn’t one. I know people don’t share my eating habits, and though I wish people ate less animals for a variety of reasons, I don’t typically preach this point of view unless asked.

People ask me if I ever miss meat, and I can honestly say I don’t. I’ll tell you why.

I just don’t like it.

When I would have meat growing up, I was never into it. I rarely finished my meal if there was meat in it and generally preferred other foods. Then, either on a 7th or 8th grade class trip (my memory is notoriously bad with dates), a bunch of us decided we were going to be vegetarians. For some that lasted the trip, for others – like me – it lasted a while.

I was completely meat and fish free throughout high school, and it actually had nothing to do with the restrictive eating I self-imposed from ages 13 – 15. I genuinely had no appetite for it. Not that I really ate vegetables either, but I didn’t miss it.

Going into my freshman year of college, I decided to reintroduce poultry and seafood back into my diet. I figured that I needed protein and we all know I wasn’t going to prepare my own food, so I should get used to eating some meat again. The thought of red meat still grossed me out, so that was still on the no fly list. (And it still is… I haven’t touched the stuff since middle school).

Chicken and turkey I would tolerate, but I did grow a taste for seafood, particularly shrimp, crab and muscles (best… jew… ever…).

About six or seven years ago (again… bad with dates), I had a revelation. I just really, really don’t like meat. My husband would make a chicken breast for dinner and I’d barely touch it, and an hour later would be hungry for non-meat food. It literally was one day just deciding not to eat meat anymore. And I figured I’d throw in fish too, because I don’t like doing anything halfway and I didn’t love it enough or crave it enough to want to have it regularly. My husband has a similar relationship to meat and easily made the decision to join me to create a meat free house.

Around that time, I decided to take a stab at veganism. Like I said, I don’t go halfway. I’d allow myself my Saturday morning bagels with cream cheese and would occasionally have pizza, but 80% of the time I was pretty faithful to no dairy. I’d never felt more energized or healthy in my life.

Then I got pregnant and literally only wanted cheese, so that was the end of veganism. I literally inhaled half a deep dish pizza three days before I found out I was pregnant. #noregrets

This is where I’ll get A LITTLE preachy. The book Eating Animals was an eye opener for me in terms of how the meat industry is regulated and how the conditions that most of these animals endure. It’s not just about my taste preferences. After finishing that book, I knew – with certainty – that I will never eat meat again.

Raising meat for food consumption is an enormous environmental drain. It takes almost 20 times less land to feed someone on a plant-based diet than it does to feed a meat-eater. It takes 10 pounds of grain to produce one pound of meat. The returns just don’t seem worth it to me.

Again, while I would love if more of our world embraced a vegetarian diet, I understand there are family and cultural traditions where meat plays a role. Life is short and people should be able to enjoy food and experiences that they enjoy. I just don’t enjoy meat, therefore I don’t eat it.

People ask me if the smell of bacon makes me want to eat bacon. It doesn’t. It isn’t something that is appealing to me. People ask me if I miss meat or fish. I never, ever crave red meat or poultry. I do miss fish on occasion. We had a sea bass at our wedding that if I had the opportunity to eat again, I would probably go back and forth on eating it. Joe’s Stone Crab was one of my favorite places, but I don’t make it a point to go there anymore – and if I did – I’d have a fleeting, “oh that looks good” thought and then would get the veggie choice.

I am by no means a perfect vegetarian.I could eat cleaner. I eat way more cheese and bread than I should and not enough greens. I eat a lot of pre-packaged snacks and don’t prepare my own meals enough. I eat way more sugar than any healthy person should. I graze, I don’t savor my food. That said, I feel 100% confident that I’m making the right decision for my own health and well-being.

And I promise that will be my only preaching on the topic (maybe).

Day 3 – What I Ate Wednesday

Is everyone impressed that I’ve kept this whole thing going for THREE FULL DAYS? You should be, seeing as I talk a big game and don’t always follow through.

I thought I’d do a popular health blogger concept post called “What I Ate Wednesday.” It’s where I post pictures of literally everything I ate today, and you get to judge me for it!

Today was a weird day because I was finishing up a work trip and traveling home, so the eats were a little all over the place. Maybe I’ll do another one on a more normal day. Are you guys shivering in anticipation for that one? I bet! Anyway, on to the grub (please don’t judge my amateur photography)!

Breakfast – 7:52 a.m.

I was running mega behind and needed to scarf something down before my work conference started at 8 a.m. So I literally grabbed a spoonful of eggs and a croissant and called it a morning. Anyone who knows me is aware that I will drink a gallon of orange juice in two days if I keep it in the house, so rather than burn an acid hole in my stomach, I typically just enjoy it when out of the house. Obviously there is coffee because I’m scary without it.

Coffee and orange Juice

My two favorite liquids in one picture

Eggs and croissant

The most boring breakfast in the history of the world

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Lunch(?) – 11:15 am

Smoothie

Yummy smoothie with a “punny” tagline!

Airport food is tricky. It’s really easy to get sucked into the black hole of cheap, greasy food that will sit in your stomach for hours while you are packed into an airplane. Not today my friends! I was pleased to discover a legit juice/smoothie bar at the Albuquerque airport. Don’t let the styrofoam, non-compostable cup fool you. This bad boy is packed with almond milk, kale, banana, strawberry, honey and vanilla protein powder. And it was frickin’ DELICIOUS. I will be recreating this at home for sure.

 

 

 

Airplane Snack Anarchy – 12:45 p.m.

The most random collection of snacksHere’s where things go off the rails a bit. I have a penchant for Hudson News Stand airport snacks and I’m not even sorry about it. Whenever I travel, I go a little crazy with the noshes. As you’ll see here as I’m tucked away in my 19A seat, I have Pirate’s Booty and a PURE bar. Don’t overlook the orange Tic Tacs, which I consume in one sitting and is by far my most disgusting food habit. I ended up saving the PURE bar for my 75-minute rush-hour cab ride home (which I didn’t snap), BECAUSE…

MORE SNACKS! – 1:30 p.m.

The flight attendants bestowed not one, but TWO individual snacks during the flight. Totally forgetting about my Pirate’s Booty and Tic Tacs for my earlier snacks, I endeavored to go to all in with these sweet and salty snacks. Things are looking up on this ride.

Stroopwafel

Wafer-y caramel-y goodness

Pretzels, cheese things and other crunchy stuff! Oh My!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Seltzer Break – 1:35 p.m.

Nothing is as refreshing as some club soda on an airplane. NOTHING!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Pre-Dinner Amuse Bouche – 5:50 p.m.

Cheese and crackers

Nothing like a slice of cheddar cheese and stale crackers to hold you over until dinner.

 

Finally home from the longest cab ride ever, I fix myself a few cheese and crackers while waiting for the hubs and kid to come home. Because I’m a child.

 

 

 

Dinner – 6:15 p.m.

This is what I call “Mediterranean dinner,” which basically consists of a toasted pita that I dip into hummus. Sometimes I go nuts and microwave some bagged Trader Joe’s broccoli to dip into this yumminess, but not today! I got all the vegetables I needed from the kale in my smoothie. Also pictured is the tiny scoop of mac and cheese I stole from my child’s mouth, because as I mentioned above, I’m a child.

hummus, pita and macaroni

Look at my amazing and sort of healthy (but not really) dinner!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Nosh Time – 8:30 p.m.

Chips

Chips to the rescue!

Usually around 8-8:30 I get a little noshy. Tonight it’s the tortilla chips my husband decided to fish out. Isn’t he charming? I’ll probably grab some almonds later because protein and salt.

Well that’s probably it friends! Not the best day of eats, but definitely not the worst considering the travel. Probably the most shocking part is that I have not had a single bite of chocolate. That will definitely be over compensated for tomorrow.