I don’t hide the fact that I am a vegetarian. I don’t carry a “Meat is Murder” sign with me everywhere I go either, but that’s neither here nor there. But I do consider myself relatively informed on nutrition. Anyone who decides to adopt a specific diet SHOULD understand what they need to do in order to lead a healthy life.
Every so often, people want to discuss my being a vegetarian and comment on how they could NEVER do it because of X, Y and Z.
“I like meat too much.”
“I can’t get full otherwise.”
“Does chicken count?”
I get it. Being a vegetarian isn’t for everyone. But today at lunch, a coworker of mine threw a curveball at me I hadn’t heard before, and I kind of laughed when I heard it.
“I couldn’t be a vegetarian because your food options are so limited and I like food too much.”
What I choose not to eat vs. what I choose to eat is such a teeny tiny piece of the food spectrum. If I choose not to eat candy, soda, or Coco Puffs, does that make my food options THAT much more limited? I mean, sure I could have pizza, but I couldn’t have a Mountain Dew to go along with it. So limiting…
The point is, when you start to take certain foods out of your diet, you get more creative with the other things you do choose to eat. Just because I can’t eat beef, doesn’t mean I can’t have just above every thing you can make WITH beef. Hell, even hamburgers have 5 or 6 variations of meatless varieties. I could argue I have more things to eat than non-vegetarians who are afraid to try something that isn’t meat.
So this is my stance: I won’t preach about why I eat what I eat if you don’t try to challenge me on why I’m doing it. If you want to have a conversation, I’m open to it. If you want to tell me that I’m not getting enough protein or that humans have been eating animals for a zillion years and we need it to be healthy, I can point you towards a lot of studies that suggest otherwise.
And for God’s sake, if you’re going to have a turkey sandwich every day, don’t tell me how restricting my diet is to you.