I’ve not talked much about my diet before on here, but up until last month, I was a pescatarian. That meant that I didn’t eat white or red meat, but I did eat fish, eggs and dairy products. My main reason for being a pescatarian was that I disagreed with the conditions of many farmed animals.
But… even at the time, I felt that I was being hypocritical- animals farmed for dairy products, as well as chickens farmed for their eggs, can still be kept in awful conditions and have a lower quality of life. This can include over-crowding, over-feeding, taking the animals’ young away early to harvest milk and not having enough space to move about. I would try to forget these things as I happily munched on my dairy milk bar (I’ve always been a chocolate addict), but there was always a tiny voice in the back of my head.
When I was pescatarian, I had a lot of vegan friends and I was in awe of their self control and kindness. I was adamant though that I wasn’t cut out for it, that it would be too hard to cut out fish and dairy and eggs from my diet. So what changed? Well, I had a rather large kick up my bum in the form of excruciating stomach pains over the the past few months. I’ve slowly worked out that my dodgy tum seems to be reactive to two things: dairy products and fatty food.
It was just over a month ago when I decided it was time for a change. The decision to go vegan was easy in the end: I’d already been wrestling with the morals of eating eggs, fish and dairy, and then my body told me that it physically couldn’t process one of those foods.
I also recently watched a documentary about how awful fish farming is for the environment and for fish populations. This was especially troubling to me because I’d previously thought that fish farming was better as it didn’t harm dolphins and other non-targeted wildlife. I realised that fishing and fish farming had its own problems that I had been completely ignorant of.
I’ve now gone the whole hog (ironically!) and both my body and brain feel better for it! I’m no longer wracked by guilt, and trying to forget about the animal who gave their life or well being for me to eat a particular thing. But I am aware that going vegan is not for everyone. I still believe that even just cutting down on how much meat we eat in a week can make a difference. At the end of the day, we’ve got to eat what makes us happiest and healthiest. For me, becoming vegan is just that!