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The idea of being a vegetarian never really crossed my mind until the other day in my foods class. I never understood why someone would wanna be a vegetarian or a vegan. I stopped to think about the things I was thinking and realized that I wasn't thinking like everyone else was, I was thinking about myself and putting others down. I told myself that I would see how it was to be a vegetarian for a month. Give up my love of meat so I could put myself in the shoe of the people I was putting down. So I was wondering, what were the reasons you guys picked to be a vegetarian or vegan?
 

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Welcome to vegetarianism!<br>
I became a veg*n because I could not live with myself knowing the treatment of the animals I was consuming. Something in my mind clicked, and I realized it was just wrong. I also am a veg*n for environmental reasons and trying to improve my health. :)<br>
Good luck this month, feel free to ask questions/for support!
 

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<div class="quote-container"><span>Quote:</span>
<div class="quote-block">Originally Posted by <strong>pugwrinkles</strong> <a href="/forum/post/2832649"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style=""></a><br><br>
Welcome to vegetarianism!<br>
I became a veg*n because I could not live with myself knowing the treatment of the animals I was consuming. Something in my mind clicked, and I realized it was just wrong. I also am a veg*n for environmental reasons and trying to improve my health. :)<br>
Good luck this month, feel free to ask questions/for support!</div>
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^I had a similar experience to the one Pugwrinkles describes -- it first hit me in college. And now that I think about it, I can probably tie it to when I watched the remake of Charlotte's Web. LOVE the book, the first movie was great, and there was just something about the most recent adaptation that got me thinking. Although health reasons prompted me to go back to an omnivorous diet for a while, I returned to vegetarianism this past holiday season, and I'll never go back to consuming anything derived from a dead animal. And the health-related and environmental benefits reinforce this positive, uplifting lifestyle.<br><br>
Feel free to post any questions or concerns you might have <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/images/smilies/smiley.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title=":)">
 

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I did it for the animals, first and foremost, but the reasons to stay vegetarian and then become vegan became more and more: I'm at a good weight now, it's much better for the environment (I'm saving more than 4 tons of CO2 a year by cutting out meat alone!) and my health is great. Besides, I feel cleaner somehow, now that I don't eat corpses, chicken period and gland secretions. (Some things can be really gross if you think about them for a while.)<br><br>
So, is this your trying-out-time? Or are you already vegetarian? In any case, it's great that you're being so open-minded! Congratulations for being someone that doesn't close themselves off from the beautiful, life-long experience of learning <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/images/smilies/tongue3.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title=":p">
 

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Why Vegan? I watched <span style="text-decoration:underline;"><b><a href="http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ple_syJmAoA" target="_blank">Meet your Meat</a></b></span>. (<span style="color:#FF0000;">Warning</span>: If you follow through on the link, the video is graphic and disturbing).
 

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<div class="quote-container"><span>Quote:</span>
<div class="quote-block">Originally Posted by <strong>SamiiRenee93</strong> <a href="/forum/post/2831891"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style=""></a><br><br>
The idea of being a vegetarian never really crossed my mind until the other day in my foods class. I never understood why someone would wanna be a vegetarian or a vegan. I stopped to think about the things I was thinking and realized that I wasn't thinking like everyone else was, I was thinking about myself and putting others down. I told myself that I would see how it was to be a vegetarian for a month. <b>Give up my love of meat so I could put myself in the shoe of the people I was putting down</b>. So I was wondering, what were the reasons you guys picked to be a vegetarian or vegan?</div>
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This sums it up:<br><br>
"Can you really ask what reason Pythagoras had for abstaining from flesh? For my part I rather wonder both by what accident and in what state of soul or mind the first man did so, touched his mouth to gore and brought his lips to the flesh of a dead creature, he who set forth tables of dead, stale bodies and ventured to call food and nourishment the parts that had a little before bellowed and cried, moved and lived. How could his eyes endure the slaughter when throats were slit and hides flayed and limbs torn from limb? How could his nose endure the stench? How was it that the pollution did not turn away his taste, which made contact with the sores of others and sucked juices and serums from mortal wounds?… It is certainly not lions and wolves that we eat out of self-defense; on the contrary, we ignore these and slaughter harmless, tame creatures without stings or teeth to harm us, creatures that, I swear, Nature appears to have produced for the sake of their beautyand grace. But nothing abashed us, not the flower-like tinting of the flesh, not the persuasiveness of the harmonious voice, not the cleanliness of their habits or the unusual intelligence that may be found in the poor wretches. No, for the sake of a little flesh we deprive them of sun, of light, of the duration of life to which they are entitled by birth and being."<br><b><i>—Plutarch</i></b><br>
Everything that leads up to the animal flesh on a dinner plate is unnatural. There is nothing natural about animals crossbred until they can't live a normal life. Nothing is natural about humans having to insemenate cows and pigs. Nothing is natural about the lakes of sh#t. Nothing is natural about slaughterhouses.<br>
Humans voluntarily have stepped out the old "circle of life" so why that's such a popular argument for staying an omnivore is ridiculous.<br>
As far as the taste of meat, you've been fed it your whole life, I bet. You don't miss foods other cultures have grown to love, not because you're physiologically different, but simply haven't been exposed to them.<br>
I'm really glad you're doing this, and I'm glad you came here. Please investigate all aspects, ethics, health, and environment.<br>
I would suggest you read any of John Robbins boods such as Eat to Live<br>
Cookbooks such as Veganomicon, Vegan Planet, and The Vegan Table<br>
Health aspects from Neal Barnard MD, Dean Ornish MD, caldwell esselstyn MD, and the China Study<br>
The PCRM.com (physicians commited to responsible medicine) website has tons of info as well as a 30 day veg challenge.<br>
Good LucK!
 

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I'm still in the beginning stages of all of this, but there are two big reasons I am making the switch.<br><br>
My love of animals is the biggest reason. I wouldn't hurt or eat my chinchilla or guinea pigs so why on earth would I think it's ok to hurt or eat a chicken? If I took out the middle man and was forced to kill the animal that gave me meat, I would be a sobbing, broken-down mess with no meat because I couldn't go through with it.<br><br>
Second is my health. Meat just isn't all that healthy for you. It's got nothing in it that you can't get from other sources (and usually at fewer calories).<br><br>
I suggest reading "Eating Animals" by Jonathan Foer. I just finished it up and it made me go from "limiting meat with a goal of eliminating it eventually" to "eliminating it immediately". It really opened up my eyes, way more than the videos did (the printed word affects me really heavily).
 

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When I first became vegetarian I was a pre-teen. I obviously didn't know much about what is going on in the meat industry. However, at that age, I knew something wasn't right if people in different culture ate rabbits (since it was the main reason it made me think about my food choices). So, I thought to myself, what is the difference between my pet rabbit and other animals? If I couldn't harm my pets, why is it ok to harm the animals we consume?<br><br>
It just wasn't right.
 

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I actually tinkered with the idea of becoming veg*n when I was on a save the earth from carbon emissions kick. One of the websites I was reading talked about the massive amount of energy used and amount of pollution created everyday to make the meat products that sit on my plate. Also something inside me always wanted to be vegetarian. I tried as a kid but with little support from my meat eating parents. Then it just became research (and veggie boards!) that gave strength to my decision. I decided to try it as a new years resolution (I hadn't ever kept one past a month or so) so I figured it wouldn't hurt. That was a little over 3 years ago and I've never looked back.<br><br>
I hope that even if you decide this isn't for you (though it definitely could be!!) you learn that meat doesn't have to be the center of your diet. Even eliminating 10% of the meat from your diet will have an impact on your health and the health of our planet <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/images/smilies/smiley.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title=":)">
 

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I'm also new to vegetarianism. I just watched that video linked above and it made me sick to see. I'm new here and looking forward to learning from you all.
 

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I read Animal Liberation by Peter Singer in 1981. The book had been lent to me by my brother, who had read it and decided to go vegetarian. Apart from philosophical discussions about the ethics of eating animals when we don't have to, it graphically described how animals are treated on farms.<br><br>
It is the only book that has ever made me cry: and it made me ashamed to be a member of the human race.<br><br>
I decided I wanted to be no part of it, so I went vegetarian. I have never, for one moment, regretted my decision.
 

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<p>I was stunned and amused by what he had to say! I didn't think the ancients gave any thought to animal rights or to not eating meat...  <em>"For that man is not, by nature, carnivorous is proved, in the first place, by the external frame of his body--seeing that to none of the animals designed for living on flesh has the human body any resemblence.</em></p>
 
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