Hoping to reap health benefits, I decided to become a vegetarian for two weeks. I had already given up red meat, so I thought it would be easy….
Remember that I made this decision with no pre-planning, after watching two anti-meat industry movies? (Read more about my decision to become a vegetarian by clicking, I Became a Vegetarian For Two Weeks and Here is What Happened, Part 1). I was spurred on by the claim in one of the movies, that radical health benefits could be achieved after only two weeks on a meatless diet. I decided to see if those claims were true.
Looking back, going into this cold turkey was probably a mistake – in fact I know it was. And it was so out of character for me. I research EVERYTHING – but not this. The very thing that could potentially change my life, I did not research. I’m shaking my own head! I know better than this! I got caught up in the moment.
Day 1 is when the fear set in. Having done no research or planning, I didn’t really know what I needed to do or what to expect. It looked easy in the movies, but how do I practice vegetarianism? On day 1, reality set in. I had some fears….
I’m sharing my fears with you because, should you decide to become vegetarian, these are things you should consider.
Here is what I feared.
1. Being hungry was my biggest fear.
It’s easy to get full when meat is the mainstay of your diet. I was worried that, without the filling properties of meat, I would be hungry all the time. I didn’t think that vegetables could be satisfying enough. Think of it like taking candy from a baby. It’s easy to take the candy from the baby’s hand, but then you’ve got to deal with the screaming baby…
2. I also worried about how it would change my family dynamic.
My family dynamic, and my role in it, revolves around food. I am the family cook and decider of what the family eats. (Good advice: Don’t bite the hand that feeds you!) While I had decided to change my diet, my family had not. My nutritional needs were going to be different from theirs. Do I force them to eat what I eat/cook, or Do I cook two meals? Did I really sign up for all this?
3. I worried that I would not get enough nutrients, protein and fiber.
When you read about vegetarianism, as a meat eater, you think about all the things that you will miss. You assume that, without meat, your body won’t get enough of what it needs and you will either feel sluggish or that you may actually get sick. I can’t wait to tell you how this worked out. It even surprised me!
4. I worried about changing my lifestyle.
I love dining, and in particular, fine dining. My family eats out quite a bit and I didn’t want that to change. (Read between the lines – I didn’t want to have to cook more!) I didn’t know if there was such a thing as “vegetarian fine dining” or if it was possible to dine finely as a vegetarian. I didn’t want to be the one who needed a “special” diet. I didn’t want to have to eliminate some of my favorite restaurants because their vegetable offerings were sparse or unsatisfying. And I didn’t want our restaurant choices to revolve around what I could not eat. This was a big one for me.
These were my concerns going into it. Turns out, there were some other things I should have worried about and some that I did worry about, I shouldn’t have… Stay Tuned for Part 3!
Need to get caught up on my story? Click here to read Part 1