I didn't mean to. It just...happened. Yeah, right. THAT's what they all say.
I believe people of vegetarian beliefs fall into 3 different doctrines.
The casual observer does not eat red meat and sometimes stays away from chicken and pork. And they usually do eat fish--although they might insist on wild caught. I'll call these folks the Christmas and Easter attendees.
Up a religious notch are the Ovo-vegetarians. In addition to refraining from all meats they will stay away from eggs and baked goods containing eggs. Ovos = Sabbath Observers.
Ovo-Lacto-Vegetarians, or Vegans are the Ultra-Orthodox of veggie-philes. (Think: attend Church EVERY day.) They abstain from all meat, eggs & dairy. As far as I can tell they eat a LOT of soybeans!
What does this have to do with me?
I've mentioned before that I am LDS. (You know. Mormons? The ones Dooce makes fun of daily.) We abstain from whole areas of generally excepted foods. Notably: Coffee, Tea, Tobacco, Alcohol. (Generally: habit forming stuff, so yes, illegal drugs are out too). But we are also encouraged to use good judgment when it comes to meats and grains. Basically there is a season for all things.
For years I've tended to eat less meat in the summer. With the heat and plenty of local farmer's market finds I gravitate to salads and pastas and my favorite: Avocado/Sprout-O-Rama sandwiches. Plus, I've been lactose intolerant since I was a teenager. I don't drink milk and had started taking Lataid in order to keep up with my nightly bowl of ice cream habit. However I still had bouts of irritable bowel and needed Zantac sometimes weekly. And recently I found out that I am mildly allergic to egg whites. (Enough about my bowels, eh?)
Last summer I read both Barbara Kingsolver's Animal Vegetable Miracle, and Jane Goodall's, Harvest for Hope. Kingsolver had been a vegetarian and explains why she returned to a meat eating diet. Goodall is a vegetarian, (vegan in fact) and while she doesn't preach her creed, she makes it very clear that our food supply is in trouble. Especially meat that comes from factory farming.
And this summer I read this book. It's title might offend some and they keep using a certain word a lot of folks do not appreciate all through it-(don't click the link if that might be you). And finally that was it.
It started out small. I was going to cut out processed sugars for a month.
For one whole month I accidentally converted Vegan. I was sa-aved! I didn't drink any soda (water only-the hardest part for me!). I kept slipping (sinner that I am) and did eat cottage cheese and products (like whole grain breads) made with eggs and dairy. And at restaurants I opted for Salmon dishes.
And I lost 10 pounds! Yes, you read that right. I did not add any extra exercising, I finally lost the last pounds from my last pregnancy. (That was 4 1/2 years ago!)
Now? No. Not a practicing Vegan. The conversion didn't take. Not saved. The weight loss did. But I still don't eat a lot of meat. I love my yummy salads. And I will go for a whole week or so making an extra effort to stay away from meats, eggs and dairy. And I totally feel better that week?
It's still the water that kills me. I don't love drinking it? I make a big jug of herbal tea instead.
Has anyone else read the offensive book? I love the premise of it. To NOT put CRAP in your body Girls! (They use a different word). I quote from it a lot (not the profanity though). My favorite is: Soda is liquid Satan Girls! And they REALLY hate diet soda, don't even go there with them!