Why I’m NOT A Vegetarian Anymore (After Only 12 Days)
I ADMIT IT. I failed as a vegetarian.
I tried to eat vegetarian style for the last nearly two weeks, and I’m giving it up. Here’s why.
I’m hungry. All. The. Time.
Then I found out why. Protein, it seems, sends a “stop eating!” message to the brain. Robert Atkins, the originator of the most widely-known low-carbohydrate, high-protein diet, says that increasing protein burns more calories. But scientifically, all we really know for sure is that both animals and humans had suppressed appetites when they ate more protein. Studies at the University of Washington have shown that simply increasing the amount of protein in your diet helps you shed pounds, even if you don’t cut your carbs.
Most Americans eat a diet consisting of 15 percent protein, 35 percent fat, and 50 percent carbohydrates of their daily caloric intake. In the study cited above, the subjects increased their protein intake to 30 percent and reduced their fat intake to 20 percent. Even though they didn’t reduce the percentage of carbs, they were 11 pounds lighter on average after 3 months. That’s nearly a pound a week.
Most significant was that the test subjects reported that they were less hungry, so they lost weight by eating fewer calories.
Now, nutritionists will tell you that lean meats, such as skinless chicken and turkey and lean cuts of red meat, along with beans and legumes, are all good sources of protein.
But what about animals?
It’s true that our warehouse-factory-farms are treating animals in ways that cause undue pain and suffering. I’m against that. So what’s a body to do?
In The Carnivore’s Manifesto: Eating Well, Eating Responsibly, and Eating Meat Martins, of Heritage Food USA and founder of Slow Food USA and Heritage Radio, offers some real-life steps everyone can take to embrace the sustainable-food movement.
Eat meat that is raised humanely, and stay away from factory-farmed meat. It’s unrealistic to think you can convince everyone to be a vegetarian (even me!), so instead of trying for a utopia where humans and animals live peacefully together, let’s improve our food system and get rid of factory farms.
Try ground meat more often. Ground up meat uses more of the animal. It’s less costly and when mixed with vegetables, it goes further.
Support your local Community Supported Agriculture (CSA). Shop at more stores, selecting cheese from the dairy store, meat from the meat market, and vegetables from the farmers’ market.
Put your money where your mouth is.