What drove you to become vegetarian? :) - VeggieBoards
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#1 Old 04-24-2008, 09:55 AM
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I'm curious I'm an omnivore myself, but I have a couple vegeterian friends and they have interesting stories xD



I came across this forum and the people here seem pretty nice.



What inspired you? Health? Animals? You're just used to it?



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#2 Old 04-24-2008, 10:01 AM
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Are you yourself interested in veg*nism and looking for reasons to try it?
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#3 Old 04-24-2008, 10:07 AM
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I became vegan for animal rights reason. I opened my eyes to the amount of animal suffering, exploitation, and murder that must happen for me to enjoy a typical American dinner.



When I sat down and really thought about it I had to ask myself in an unbiased manner, what is important? The temporary satisfaction I get from eating meat, dairy and eggs? Or ending the amount of suffering, exploitation, and murder that occurs to the animals being raised for this temporary satisfaction.



I rationally decided that the little satisfaction wasn't worth the amount of harm happening to the animals. The book that I most liked when I started learning about the harm that takes place so that the western world can eat a dinner is "Animal Liberation" by Peter Singer.
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#4 Old 04-24-2008, 10:10 AM
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My sister is trying to become one... her and my friends are talking me into it.



I'm not sure though. My mom is very supportive of my sister, so I know she would be supportive of me if I did become one.



I just want to see peoples views on here. You know, getting to know other vegeterians and how their lifestyle is.
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#5 Old 04-24-2008, 10:21 AM
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I am probably one of the few here with completely non-political or non-'health' based reasons for switching to a vegetarian diet. I refrain from calling myself vegetarian because of this. One day I simply stopped eating meat. That is all.
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#6 Old 04-24-2008, 10:29 AM
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A lot of things inspired my rejection of meat eating, but the most important to me was reading about biochemistry. Once foods are broken down, it really doesn't matter which source, vegetable, or animal, therefore, It is more prudent to choose the sort of food from which you derive your nutrients from another perspective. I choose the route that is better for the earth, better for feeding starving people, and kinder overall, and is also better for the body in that many things not present in plants are present in food animals, things like inoculations and also hormones, in fish mercury and so on, which my body does not need. Although the industry scientists say that these things do not appear in "the finished product" I disagree-- These are environmental and also health reasons, but there are also "ethical" reasons-- the fact that animals have emotions, and plants do not, and it is plain rude to kill sentient beings. I understand that cows as we know them would not exist if not for animal husbandry but perhaps that would be a good thing.



Some people have brought up that this is evolutionary. It might not have been possible to go totally vegetarian 100 years ago, but now there are lots of optional things to eat, supplements if you need them, and many protein options. Science also understands more about how food effects us.



You really don't' need meat to live. Too many people eat too much any way. If you need any, you only need about 3 ounces a day and you can get the same amount of protein in a few chunks of tofu, or some beans. In other words, eating animals is illogical when you can get protein in other plant forms. Protein molecules are protein molecules. It doesn't matter where they come from.



Also vegetable staples (dry goods like beans, rice, noodles, flour) are far easier to store. You don't need refrigeration, really. You can also grow some of your yearly food if you have a yard, so it makes you less dependent on the market.



I feel it is healthier. Vegetarian and Vegan eating habits have been proven through the nurse study and other studies to lower the risk of heart disease, hyper tension, diabetes, and overweight (if you don't get into eating a lot of cheese and butter). People who eat vegetarian food have lower cholesterol and blood sugar.



I frankly can't see any negatives.



I hope that you research this more and decide to give it a try. It certainly will not hurt you. One fun thing to do is get a blood work-up and then do vegetarian for a few months and go back and get another one to see the changes to your body.
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#7 Old 04-24-2008, 10:32 AM
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I had always been an animal lover, and was somewhat sympathetic towards vegetarians. Then one day, I read an article about how chickens have unique personalities. I had a pet cockatiel at the time (RIP ), and I realized that since he's capable of learning things and having a unique personality, all those chickens with bigger brains must be even smarter than my little bird brain. So I felt sorry for the chickens and decided to stop eating them, and it seemed a little silly to keep eating other animals, so I went vegetarian cold turkey (no pun intended).



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#8 Old 04-24-2008, 10:44 AM
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I've always been a fairly sensitive person..... never killing a mosquito as it was biting me, collapsing into tearful guilt watching ants die from the poison my parents had put out (), breaking my heart over roadkill...but not seeing the meat I ate for what it was.... it just never fully entered into my consciousness because, I think, the concept of animals=meat, or vegetarianism, was completely not present in my life in any way. At any rate, at some point after I moved out of home, something, I can't remember what now, really put it into my mind, and I began somewhat seriously mulling it over. During this mulling period (), I was walking to work and I saw a cat that had been hit by a car, and I watched it die. Something in that hit me full force, and the decision was irrevocably made in that instance. It did, however, take me a couple of years of vegetarianism before I started to think about and learn about 'why vegan'. That was something that after I really learned the truth, I argued with myself for awhile about, and then, after having a kid, I think it was the breastfeeding that gave me the connection, and made me really get it. And then boom - I was sitting in a restaurant eating eggs benedict, and the realization fully hit me when I was almost done the meal.... And that too was an irrevocable realization. Once you really know, you can never go back - mentally, at least.
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#9 Old 04-24-2008, 11:11 AM
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As a kid, I never enjoyed eating meat, and at age 13 I phased it completely out of my life. It was after I became a vegetarian, that I realized how horrible and unnecessary it is to consume meat. I also don't feel justified in the conquering of other animals for food sources. I can't bring myself to want to kill an animal just to eat when there are other endless sources of food. I have no desire to eat an animal. I think what makes us human and what puts us at the top of the "food chain," is the fact that through knowledge, wisdom and understanding; we don't have to consume other animals and we could make the environment better for all living things.
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#10 Old 04-24-2008, 11:25 AM
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When I connected that meat = former living, feeling, loving being.



I've been an animal lover my whole life. I was reading a book one day that was talking about how animals are really treated and it smacked me in the face. I had had a veggie friend a few years prior who tried telling me these things, but I wasn't ready to face it. I think I had to get here on my own. But once I did... wow.



That was actually just a few months ago. I've come all the way from meat and potatoes to WONDERFUL tasty veggie food, it's really amazing the variety of delicious stuff out there. Who'dathunk that taking away some things would expand the rest of my world so much!!! (I'm forever thankful!)



I agree with Gita. Look up some veggie recipes and expand your tastebuds' horizons! If you really need reasons... do research on how animals are treated. Some people don't do it for the animals, if you don't care for that aspect... check out what goes into an animal's body which eventually makes it's way into YOUR body.
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#11 Old 04-24-2008, 11:26 AM
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I have a similar story...I was always an animal lover and I started thinking more and more about how the meat I was eating was a dead animal. So when I was 14 I finally made the choice to stop eating it altogether. Luckily my parents were very supportive.
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#12 Old 04-24-2008, 03:04 PM
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I watched the "Meet Your Meat" video years ago and that did it for me.

"With confidence, you have won before you have started" - Marcus Garvey
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#13 Old 04-24-2008, 05:32 PM
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My mom and I always wanted to be vegetarian. But my dad didn't let us (long story). I moved out of my parents house with my boyfriend (now hubby) and I finally took the plunge. I became vegetarian for health reasons at first. I think I was pesto-veg first ... how ever you spell it (I ate fish, but that didn't last long). Then lacto-ovo (for 5 years). Now I'm vegan (for a year and a half). But the "dietary vegan" thing started getting into the animal rights thing, then the "green" thing. I'm hooked. Vegans rule Ok any veggies rule Just because of what they do to the world. Every little bit helps.



My mom is veggie now, too. I don't know what to call her, though. She's definitely not vegan, but she likes cheese and milk, but eats fish but not often ... so weird. She's confused LOL. She does like my vegan recipes, though. That rocks.
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#14 Old 04-24-2008, 06:01 PM
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A fetal pig. I lost the disconnect between "animal" and "food."

http://megatarian.blogspot.com
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#15 Old 04-24-2008, 06:34 PM
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I became a vegetarian when my husband was diagnosed with non-Hodgkins lymphoma in 2000. Since we have a mentally disabled daughter, I felt the need to improve my health - in case I was going to become a single parent . I also became aware of factory-farming and the commodification of animals in the food chain. In 2005, I became vegan when I realized that my beloved chihuahuas were just about the same size as your average egg-laying chicken (and probably had about the same "intelligence"). The thought of my dogs being kept in battery cages and never getting out broke my heart, and made me realize that even if you don't actually kill an animal for it's meat, you can be a part of a horrible and cruel industry.



So now I'm healthier, I'm better informed as to where my food comes from, and I have peace of mind about what I eat.

It is our choices that show what we truly are far more than our abilities. ~A. Dumbledore
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#16 Old 04-24-2008, 07:43 PM
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I recently decided to become a vegetarian. I felt trapped in a world of synthesized chemicals and over-indulgence. The problem is, a lot of us don't realize how badly we're over-doing it. I know that when I actually thought about what I was putting in my body, I almost stopped eating altogether for a few days. I might actually consider a detox diet to flush out the chemical addictions (sugar, salt, caffeine, second-hand smoke, etc.) I've been struggling with for 22 years. It's frustrating that healthy foods, natural or organic, are 5x the price of the garbage they sell in regular supermarkets. For me, going vegetarian has nothing to do with the environment. Organic crops tend to have a lower yield due to diseases and low drought tolerances, so farmers have to extend their fields to compensate. I guess it's a trade off. Would you rather have chemical runoff or less natural forested areas? The environmental debate pertaining to vegetarianism doesn't seem to have a perfect argument. But these days, nothing does. So I decided that I wanted to go vegetarian simply to avoid any doubt that what I'm eating is good for me. All I know is, I'm more regular than I've ever been before!
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#17 Old 04-24-2008, 08:02 PM
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Concern for animal welfare was what drove me to want to become a vegetarian. But now I've moved away from that. I still support animal welfare and think that factory farming as it is today is horrid and should be boycotted. Right now, I'm staying vegetarian mainly because of environmental reasons and my cheap-skateness (meat is expensive!). It's wasteful to devote so much grains and other crops (and the resources used to grow them) into raising a pound of meat when the same amount could have fed more people.
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#18 Old 04-24-2008, 10:47 PM
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It was onetime I was eating mince that I felt very sick from it, everytime I'd eat it it would make me sick. All along I always had a gut feeling with what I was eating and I knew it was wrong yet I wasn't educated at the time I thought it was a part of life. It was after eating that mince I decided I had enough! the fact that the mince made me feel sick I knew something was terribly wrong. I went on the internet after I ate the mince that day and did a search and typed is meat bad for people. I then found goveg.com, and after reading all the information on there I was shocked. I was vegeterian then and now Im a step up, Im a vegan. I do it for animal rights and im sure most people do, and for health reasons, meat really is bad for your health.
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#19 Old 04-24-2008, 11:50 PM
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the movie super size me got me looking at the health aspect of it then I started researching it and came accross a movie called Earthlings( you can watch it for free on youtube) and that did it for me. I started out lacto ovo but as time has gone by I have become more and more strict about it. Now im borderline vegan. I eat totaly vegan and buy cruelty free the only thing I havent done yet is cut out animal derived clothing yet.
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#20 Old 04-25-2008, 07:36 AM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by pinkwolf View Post

I watched the "Meet Your Meat" video years ago and that did it for me.



That sums it up for me too. I was researching milk and why humans are drinking it. One thing led to another and I was watching all these videos, like the meet your meat video and other random ones. Originally, It started out as cutting out milk from my diet. A few hours and many tears later I was practically vegan! My only regret is that I did not stumble uopn this years ago....

I have to return some videotapes
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#21 Old 04-25-2008, 10:00 AM
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One undercooked hamburger that was RAW in the middle. /vomit.
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#22 Old 04-25-2008, 02:09 PM
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I was hitch-hiking and some truck driver picked me up. "Hey, can you take me to becoming vegetarian?" I asked. "Sure thing", he replied, and that was that. (untrue)



I saw a PETA ad. (true)

"and I stand

upon a mountain

made of weak and useless men"

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#23 Old 04-25-2008, 04:14 PM
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Ever since I was like six or seven I was opposed to eating meat. I HATED it growing up, and use to spit it out in a napkin, lol. The main reason was my love for animals. I just couldn't comprehend the idea of eating something I saw at a petting zoo, you know? I remember being a kid and constantly asking my dad why we had to eat animals, and if it hurt when they died, and why we eat cows and not cats, stuff like that. It just never made sense to me. The second reason, is I dont like meat, the texture, the smell, thinking about it makes me want to gag. Ew.
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#24 Old 04-25-2008, 09:08 PM
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I could no longer continue to say I love animals and then sit down to eat them for dinner.
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#25 Old 04-26-2008, 06:59 AM
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At first it started with red meat, because someone brought up to me that pigs are just as smart as dogs. Overnight I kind of thought about it, and decided that yeah, all those animals are just as smart as dogs and can feel like dogs feel, and I would never eat my dog.



Then I saw Meet your Meat for the first time, and it kind of sealed the deal. I don't want to eat chicken or eggs or milk anymore either.
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#26 Old 04-26-2008, 09:54 PM
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I never ate much meat at all....it grossed me out the smell...taste...all of it...but as I got older it was Animals and My Love for animals...I became the loud and proud animal activist I am today...
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#27 Old 04-26-2008, 10:43 PM
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I did it to stick it to The Man.







And, er, animals'n'stuff.
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#28 Old 04-27-2008, 07:32 AM
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I decided that I didn't want animals to be killed just so that I could eat, particularly as I considered myself to be an animal lover. I grew up in a village next to fields with cows and sheep in and when I was little I did think it was a bit strange to go and talk to the cows and sheep and then go inside and eat meat for tea, but my parents discouraged me from making the connection between animals and food. When I was 15 I decided I couldn't live with the contradiction any more and decided to be vegetarian, much to the annoyance of my parents!



I stayed vegetarian and then became vegan because I learned a lot more about how animals are mistreated, and increasingly because farming animals for food causes so much environmental destruction, with talk of food 'shortages' and climate change it's even more important to me to be vegan because a vegan (and vegetarian) diet causes a lot less damage to the environment than eating meat. But I still believe that animals should not have to suffer and die so that I can eat, it's really not necessary and I feel better for not taking part in needless animal cruelty.
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#29 Old 04-27-2008, 08:50 AM
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I enjoy living with that much less guilt in my life--I feel bad enough as it is about how much I like my car (I do bike/ttc/walk/run whenever I can, but those times I do drive I get a guilty little happy feeling. *sigh*) I don't like the amount of recycling and garbage I put out (I do try to cut down, again, but some things are just inherent. They don't sell soy milk in refillable jugs in my area...) At least this way I know that what I eat is having a huge impact in many different ways:



-Animal suffering. Every bit of meat, dairy, or egg I don't eat helps to diminish animal suffering in the world. Oh sure, the meat that's already been slaughtered and is on the shelves doesn't feel any better blablabla.. but the less demand there is in the industry, the less production, that many less animals that are bred, tortured from birth, and eventually slaughtered either as garbage or "food".



-The ENVIRONMENT! It takes 35 Kcal of energy to make 1 Kcal of meat! That means in a 3oz serving of beef (average 450 Kcal--depending on what cut) I'm really using 15750 Kcal of energy--that's almost half a gallon of gassoline! Not to mention the amount of water needed to raise 2lbs of beef is enough to take a 15 min shower every day for an entire year... not to mention cows alone produce 20% of the methane we emit into the atmosphere. (Methane is about 20 times as bad as carbon dioxide as a greenhouse gas!) It has been shown time and time again cows produce significantly more greenhouse gasses in methane alone than cars per annum!!! And that's NOT including the extreme amounts of waste (both biological and water waste), the fuel of THEIR transport to and from the slaughter house, etcetera.



For comparison, it takes about 3 Kcal of energy to make 1 Kcal of plant. Plants do need to be watered as well, but they don't need a fraction as much as cows do (cows need the water needed to water their food, plus water for themselves, plus need to be washed and processed much more.) Plants have a higher turnover, plants don't suffer (in any way us humans can understand at least), plants don't emit methane... The only real issue with plants is the nitrogen fertilizers, but its not like the food cows eat aren't fertilized the exact same way!!!



To find sources for all my facts, please just google it--I really feel that there's a lot more to know than what any one site or article can say on any one of these facts. Also, pick up any (ANY) green book (yesterday I went through the entire 'green' section at my bookstore--that was a lot of books.. 2 or 3 dozen ish?) and they ALL have at least a few pages on how cutting down on meat, even if its only going vegetarian once per week, is more of an impact than anything else you could do alone.



Help us save our earth, please? <3



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#30 Old 04-27-2008, 10:47 PM
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I kinda got to thinking about the Native American way of life(even though I am not Native American). When they ate animals to survive, they wasted nothing at all, and truly loved the buffalo and were sorry they did what they had to in order to survive. Nowadays there is more of an animal wasted than consumed, and its not in order to survive as much is it is a luxury thing, which really isn't what our right to hunt was. It has been *******ized into commercialism.
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