This year, I made the decision to stop eating meat. I wanted to challenge myself. I was curious what it would do to my body and find out if I could even do it. After reading a lot about the health benefits and the sad reality of how animals are being treated, I felt like I owed it to my body, the environment and the animals. Since then, many events such as the fire in the Amazonas, different encounters and posts on social media have shown me that this decision was the right one for me. If you want to learn more about my journey and why I became a Vegetarian, keep on reading.
In May 2019, I decided to quit eating meat for one whole month. I wanted to find out if I can do it and how my body would feel. I have not eaten meat once since then.
Generally, I have always been very health conscious and growing up. I was eating really healthy. My mum always made sure we ate enough vegetables and fruit. In addition, we bought most of our food locally. I grew up eating meat 2-3 times a week, drinking cow milk before going to bed and consuming other animal products on a regular basis. This is what I was used to and how my parents raised me.
As I was getting older, I started to form an opinion for myself. Since moving out of my parents house and starting to cook for myself, I started reducing my meat consumption and replaced cow milk with almond milk. I already had a lot of knowledge on nutrition and food up to this point but I wanted to educate myself more on meat and animal products. That’s when I decided that this is not how I want to live. I was never someone that had to have meat for every meal and I also never ate a lot of it. However, I always liked the taste of it and enjoyed eating meat. I don’t think that there is anything necessarily wrong with eating meat. We have been eating meat since the creation of humankind. However, overconsumption, the increase in population and profit hungry corporations have lead to factory farming, horrible conditions for animals and serious impacts on the environment. I made this decision for myself and I am not forcing anyone to follow my path.
At this point, this feels right for me and as of right now I cannot imagine going back to eating meat in the near future. I might eat meat again at some point. I am not sure. However, as long as we are over-consuming and treating the animals how they are treated right now, I do not want to be a part of this. My goal for the near future is to entirely quit milk products such as cheese and butter and try to become a Vegan.
There are three main reasons why I decided to quit eating meat and consuming cow milk that I would like to discuss briefly.
To protect the animals, because they cannot protect themselves
First of all, it makes me sad how animals are treated and how we went from animal farming to factory farming. Animals have to suffer way beyond being killed basically from the day they are born. This is not something I want to support just because I like meat. Yes, we have been eating animals since the beginning of humankind. People always had livestock. BUT not like this. Today, we kill animals a couple of months after they are born, they are born into horrible conditions, are being separated from their mother after a couple of days, are being fattened so that we can kill them faster, the list goes on… We kill animals for a tenderloin. So we can eat meat 3 times a day. The rest of it pretty much goes to waste. This is not how it used to be. I am not completely opposed to killing animals and eating meat. I do believe that our body needs meat, but maybe once a week, not three times a day, not under these conditions.
To protect our environment, so that we have a future
Second of all, I do it for the environment. The meat industry is huge. Animals produce huge amounts of CO2, need immense amounts of fodder and so forth, which all hurts our environment. Again, this is a consequence of our overconsumption not the meat consumption in general.
To do good for myself
Lastly, this decision is also concerning my health. Animals are put under enormous stress, are being treated with antibiotics and other medication and are malnourished. Eating meat or consuming animal products, this is what we put in our body. Most of the times we don’t even know where the meat we eat came from, what the animal was treated with and what their diet was. These are my three main motivations in a nutshell. Of course I could go into depth and greater detail with explaining these.
If you think about becoming a Vegetarian or a Vegan as well, here are some tips that helped me on my journey.