Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Climbing back on the wagon

I think I’m finally done with meat. I have to be very careful about how much beef I eat, and always have had to, because for some reason it triggers some serious IBS action in me. Last night I thought I was going to die, so I took my trusty little Imodium AD pills, put a heating pad on my belly and went to bed early.

And as a sometimes yoga practitioner, and occasional Buddhist, I know it’s better not to eat meat at all. But you meat eaters out there know how hard it is to hit that spot without it, right? Your body really does crave it sometimes. Or maybe it’s just conditioning. Anyway, I will have to step back a little and figure out how this will work because Dan is a diehard meat eater and that won’t change until he’s dead. And since we always eat dinner as a family, at the table, dinner will take some adjusting. Mostly on my part as I’ll have to figure out how to make up for the bulk of our dinners being protein based. Maya has never really cared for meat, so maybe I can follow her lead and likewise, adjustments I make can help both her and me.

It did occur to me that I could continue eating poultry and fish (fish only rarely as I don’t actually like it AT ALL) and just stop eating mammals. I don’t know, though.

Have you ever watched Andrew Zimmern’s show Bizarre Foods? He travels all over the world and eats all the little “nasty bits,” as he calls them. You know – the chicken’s feet and pig’s ears and monkey brains and god knows what else. Every time I see that show I know that if I had to decide between eating those bits and not eating meat at all, I would be a vegetarian in about 2 seconds. Not that anyone in this country is going to make me choose between those options, I just mean that I am aware of the fact that the modern western diet lets a lot of “parts” go to waste. Or maybe all those “parts” just go into hotdogs. Yeck.

My parents (and daughter) are Seventh Day Adventists and as such are encouraged to avoid all animal products. They eat some of those fake meat things... the vegetarian sausage and what not. I really just don't get that though. If you aren't supposed to eat meat, why eat a facsimile of it? I guess it's just a means to trick that part of you that wants meat into being satisfied.

And I’m sure some logical person out there will comment that I could try eating smaller portions of meat. To them I would say that one might have to employ physical restraint to get me to eat smaller portions of anything. And that’s why I’m in therapy. Among other reasons.

All or nothing, baby!


And for my own records, it's raining.


Sarcastic Bastard said...

Good luck, Steph. I am down to eating only chicken and seafood. I was a total vegetarian for 6 years when I was younger. I was skinny as a rail then, even though I ate lots of junk food and little vegetables. I still go through periods where meat really grosses me out. I am disgusted with Tyson right now, so being the number one supplier of chicken and poultry in our country, chicken may have to go too.

Steph(anie) said...

The key word there may be younger. Our metabolism slows as we... mature.

We get our chicken from Costco and try to stick to the Foster Farms stuff. Do they sell that outside of California?

adrienne said...

interesting topic, as always.

we had a debate at a dinner party recently...a table of international, insanely educated, creative, successful folks. my partner was giving the whole evolution, shape of our canine teeth, economically/ecologically responsible argument for veganism.

this BRILLIANT woman present offered that this is a somewhat limited and bourgeoisie perspective; in most parts of the world people are not in the position to take ideological positions...they eat what they can find to eat.

i guess that doesn't help, except to say that perhaps moderation is the answer for those of us blessed with an abundance of resources.


Steph(anie) said...

adrienne - I've never had a head for moderation. I thought our canine teeth meant we were supposed to eat meat. And yes, it does smack of a First World kind of problem, but my guess is you could find many examples of indigenous and/or impoverished people who manage just splendidly to be vegetarians.

Steph(anie) said...

adrienne cont. - and I think if you raised your own meat it would/could be environmentally responsible. Not that that is an option for urbanites.

Bethany said...

IBS sucks.
I want to quit meat too.
Good luck, brave one.

Sarcastic Bastard said...

We don't even have Costcos in this part of Ohio.

Steph(anie) said...

Bethany - not brave, just desperate.

SB - No Costco?! Holy Hell, I can't even imagine.

Petit fleur said...

NO WAY!!! You called it girl. You sent the sunshine and now it's raining... That's SO unfair.

Good luck with your decision. One thing you may want to include in your diet is a good probiotic. (Whether or not you eat the meat.) It may be good for the IB, and I'm pretty sure it can't hurt.

I live with a veggie, and it's sometimes a pain sometimes... like when I want to make chicken soup, but I make a lot of pasta or rice with veggies, and if I want meat/poultry I'll just cook that in a separate pan for me. (We don't have a lot of items at once on the menu. I usually just mix them all up and call it good. :-) Mexican is always a good option for the veggie/meat split fam. Likely you'll just have to play with it and see what works.

Good luck!

Steph(anie) said...

PF - I keep telling Dan to just eat like he normally would (he's cooking while he's on vacation from school), and if I don't get enough to eat I'll have a bowl of cereal or some beans. We'll see.

Mwa said...

I had IBS SOOO bad. It helped me enormously to cut out Coke. The drink, not the powder. Oh, and lots of sweet things.

In my head I am a vegetarian, and I actually managed for a while in the UK. In Belgium, it just seems impossible. I don't know any vegetarians here, because the whole country conspires against it.

Go, you!!!

Steph(anie) said...

Mwa - I can't give up sweets!!!!!