Why I recently became a pescetarian.
This was not a conscious lifestyle change to add to my other blog.
Over the years I grew up in a family where food was given to me and I had to eat it, I was not brought up with the luxury of choice. My family came from big meat eaters, my uncle was a butcher and my dad is a relatively large man, who got me into steaks and cooking with big bits of meat.
When I moved out, I often wondered how much cheaper my shopping would be without meat. But at this point, I couldn’t change my lifelong habit. When I say I was a big meat eater, I couldn’t value a proper meal without it.
I caught a virus some years ago, and the illness was horrendous. I was sick for three days and despite the dr’s telling me it was a virus, I always believed it was due to a take away I ate, a chicken burger. Since this incident, I have never touched a chicken burger since. Only eating chicken when I myself prepared it.
A couple of months ago, my partner and I brought a meat hamper and because he was down from the army for a week, we thought it was a good idea to eat as much of it as possible, as a treat. We was eating steak for breakfast! He developed no side effects, but for me I felt so tired constantly and the thought of how much meat I consumed began to make me feel sick.
At the weekend, I had a night out- and I ended it with cooking myself bacon pasta. Despite not feeling ill the next day, the following day I began to feel super sick. I convinced myself that it was the bacon, uncooked. I decided that, that day I would no longer eat meat.
I am fed up with feeling that the meat I’m consuming is just sitting in my stomach, not fully digested. I am sick of convincing myself that meat is expensive, therefore I must treat myself and others around me with it. I am tired of feeling tired when I eat it. I am fed up with blaming meat for my sicknesses.
When I told everyone about this, they laughed. But from trying to consume meat in my every meal, to not allowing meat to pass through my mouth in a month I would say I’m doing quite well. I have currently lost 4 pounds and I am still eating large amounts, just without the meat. My skin is looking glowing and my overall energy levels are really good. Although not everday and not a favourable experience, I am able to survive a day with little as 5 hours sleep.
Here are some of my top tips to help you transition if your thinking about it, secondly, these tips are highly selected to someone like myself:
- Be aware of your lifestyle. Think of substitutes for times when your likely to need it, think BBQ’s, takeaways and meals out- what will you eat instead?
- If your family are hesitant- cook the dinners, show them some vegetarian options
- Try and be excited about food without meat, be excited about new vegetables and fish!
- Think money- eating meat is so expensive, think of all the money you will save, calculate your weekly shop and you will see.
- If you have children, partner etc do not talk about your new diet, and do not expect others to change.
- With your partner, so you do not feel left out, eat the same as them but have no meat to save the hassle, or use quorn alternatives instead if you fancy the extra cooking
- Be sensible, if your cutting protein, remember to add it. If ever in doubt, eat an egg. I am really serious about this, if I am not sure whether I have eaten enough protein, I always boil an egg to make sure.
- Tins will be your friend so buy lots – this includes lots of tomatoes, beans etc – this goes for frozen veg- stock up
- Don’t feel guilty for enjoying the smell of meat, my mouth still waters on some Sundays when my mum does a big leg of lamb. Try not to feel guilty.
- Give yourself credit, if your doing this to lose weight then its not a long term commitment. I allow myself to snack on fatty foods sometimes to award myself for avoiding meat. I also will eat meaty flavoured crisps!
That’s all I can think about for now.
I would be really interested to know what made you change diet? What your top tips are? and even why you are thinking about such a transition.