It’s actually kind of a tricky subject, the subject of labeling yourself based on what you eat.
It’s actually kind of ridiculous, as well. Yet, here I am, trying to sort through this wealth of new (and old, just resurfaced) information that I have.
Why didn’t I implement new eating habits into my life before even when I knew some of this information?
When I was a senior in high school, I read “Skinny Bitch”. It was an entertaining book, but I was kind of annoyed by the method in which the authors decided to “bully” the readers into adopting a vegan lifestyle. So annoying in fact, that it became a distracting overtone and I literally stopped taking anything they said seriously or into consideration and just started, I retained most of the knowledge, but I didn’t want to take advice from two catty, rude girls. But, that’s just my opinion. Was the information they presented accurate? As far as I can recall, yes, yes it was. It just wasn’t presented to me in a manner that made it matter.
We all do things we know are “bad” for us, or know that we could improve our lifestyle in one way or another. Whether that means financially, mentally, physically, emotionally, intellectually, you name it- at least one aspect of our lives can be improved in one way or another. I’m not a psychologist, but we refrain from diving in head-first to improve those areas of our lives for many reasons. More often than not, we are standing in our own way.
Some of us are fully aware that our bank accounts are thinning out a bit, for whatever reason. Instead of cutting back on things that we perceive as necessities (Comcast cable in HD in ALL the channels, for example) and saving that money for things that actually ARE necessities (food, rent, the water bill, etc), we continue in our ways and just accept the fact that our bank accounts are running low.
In my case, I am extremely health conscious. I am racking up tens of thousands (probably more at this point- hoorah!) of dollars in school tuition to learn about human health, so you better believe that I am passionate about it. I would like to consider myself a fairly healthy person. I eat my fruits and vegetables on a daily basis. I lift weights and get my cardio in. I mean, that’s pretty healthy, right? I mean, I guess.
Food Inc. presented the issues from a more ethical standpoint. The point of view of the treatment (or lack thereof) of the animals, and the harmful effects of the unsustainable ways in which Americans produce and eat their food.
Forks Over Knives presented the issues from the point of view of the humans- how eating less animal products is beneficial to humans and their health and really took no ethical stance at all.
The combination of watching both of these films back-to-back was a perfect fitting puzzle piece to catalyze whatever decisions I had yet to make about my eating habits.
I made the decision to stop drinking cow’s milk a while ago. First of all, I’m pretty sure I have a mild form of Lactose intolerance, so it really doesn’t make me feel all too well. I was made very aware of the types of hormones and anti-biotics that comes in cow’s milk and I wasn’t really keen on ingesting those myself. Also, in order for cows to mass produce milk, like most are, they are fed pregnancy hormones so that their bodies will lactate. Just like humans, cows only produce milk when they are pregnant. This milk is also for their young. I just wasn’t cool with that, or the hormones that I was voluntarily ingesting my drinking cow’s milk. So, I switched to Almond milk and have never looked back.
A few months ago, I switched to cage free, anti-biotic free, hormone free chicken eggs, for similar reasons as stated above.
No one told me to do these things, I was not prompted by a persuasive film or sassy book. It was just something that I felt was right- not only for myself by reducing the amount of chemicals I was putting into my body, but also was best for the animals. Yes, some of these products are more expensive, but I am helping animal-friendly farmers by buying their happy, healthy chicken’s eggs, and by purchasing Almond Milk instead of regular cow’s milk, I am not supporting the farmers who treat their animals poorly.
Since I am not a fan of dairy in the first place, I haven’t really looked into buying “cow-friendly” cow’s milk. I probably won’t look into it either, since I really don’t enjoy drinking it anyway. But I’m sure that is an option! If I ever decide to drink or use cow’s milk in a recipe, I will make sure that it was humanely taken from the cow, and all that good stuff.
Forks Over Knives presented the issue that consuming a large amount of animal products isn’t really that healthy for humans. This presents me with a different perspective all together. I am a huge fan of cottage cheese and greek yogurt. (This is where the gray area of my lactose-sensitivity comes into play, as I can eat cottage cheese and yogurt with no GI issues, but that’s neither here nor there.) Do I want to give up these things for my health even if they are organic, animal-friendly products?
This is the dilemma that I am at right now. It’s not like it is a detrimental decision, but it is a very personal one that has been rolling around in my head for the past few days.
I guess this is going to be a 3 part thing..
Since my sister and I leave for Europe on Wednesday, we’re celebrating New Years Eve tonight and ringing the new year in early!
I hope you are all enjoying your holiday!!!
To be continued…once again!