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hello there!<br><br><br><br>
this is my first post and i am so glad i found this forum! i am a total newbie...and i am seriously considering making the switch to veggie. i already have the consent of my husband (i didn't need it, but it's nice not to be opposed) and i have the health of 3 small babies to think about. so anyway...i have some looming questions that i would greatly appreciate opinions on...<br><br><br><br>
1) if i leave fish, eggs, and dairy products in my diet, does that make me a huge hypocrite?<br><br><br><br>
2) i'm not sure i could completely cut out animal products...i also live in germany where there is meat meat everywhere and i think it may be difficult to find vegetarian options in such a 'meat n potatoes' society<br><br><br><br>
3) if i cut out eggs and dairy...will it be extremely difficult to replace those products for basic baking and cooking? or will i seriously have to restructure everything?<br><br><br><br>
4) what are your favorite replacements for most meat products...like do you use egg-beaters or grillers, etc?<br><br><br><br>
now, honestly, i feel a bit hypocritical...because if i do this, i want to do it right....but i honestly don't know if i will be disciplined enough to do this properly.....and i am seriously worried that i will be labeled as a hypocrite if i keep fish and eggs in our diet. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/images/smilies/sad.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title=":("><br><br><br><br>
my father is also a hunter (that is his job) and i am really worried about flack at home....<br><br><br><br>
i am extremely laid back and open, so i would really appreciate honest opinions here. i don't need any sugar-coating. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/images/smilies/smiley.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title=":)"><br><br><br><br>
ok, thanks for listening to me ramble on...i honestly have no one to talk to about any of this and i am a bit lost....but my conviction simply will NOT let me disregard this....i feel compelled to do this for the sake of the animals of this world and for our own health. i would really appreciate any insight or help. thanks so much.<br><br><br><br>
~jan <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/images/smilies/smiley.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title=":)">
 

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<i>1) if i leave fish, eggs, and dairy products in my diet, does that make me a huge hypocrite?</i><br><br><br><br>
It doesn't make you a hypocrite to leave eggs and dairy in your diet. It makes you a vegetarian. Fish, however, is a no-no, and if you eat it, you are not a vegetarian at all. Some people DO eat fish, but otherwise a vegetarian diet, and they are sometimes called pescetarians.<br><br><br><br><i>2) i'm not sure i could completely cut out animal products...i also live in germany where there is meat meat everywhere and i think it may be difficult to find vegetarian options in such a 'meat n potatoes' society</i><br><br><br><br>
Many vegetarians live in "Meat and Potatoes" societies - my family certain is in that list! You'll find other german vegetarians on these boards, there is a country section to help people get local info on these boards, I haven't looked for germany yet but give it a shot!<br><br><br><br><i>3) if i cut out eggs and dairy...will it be extremely difficult to replace those products for basic baking and cooking? or will i seriously have to restructure everything?</i><br><br><br><br>
Vegans have lots of ways to bake and cook without dairy. To replace eggs, you can use all sorts of things, from bananas, to apples, to vinegar (really!) to cornstarch, arrowroot, or special vegan "egg replacers" that you can buy at stores. Different substitutes work best in different types of things (cookies, cakes, breads, etc.) Many vegans on this board would be very happy to help you, and there are tons of vegan cookbooks that will help you with the basics, if you are interested.<br><br><br><br><i>4) what are your favorite replacements for most meat products...like do you use egg-beaters or grillers, etc?</i><br><br><br><br>
MY favorite replacements include: tofu, tempeh, seitan, lentils, beans, etc. I occasionally will use "mock meats" because they are so quick and easy. Of those, I like the morningstar farms "meal starter" chik strips, several "veggie burger" type things, and Textured Vegetable Protein/veggie beef crumbles for making "beefy" style recipes (like chili, shephards pie, etc.)<br><br><br><br>
As long as you eat meat of any kind (including fish), you are not a vegetarian yet, but an "aspiring vegetarian" - but every little bit less meat you eat DOES make a difference. A lot of people have a transitional period where they slowly cut meat out of their diet - others, just stop one day and never look back. Everyone's path to vegetarianism is different. I hope you find a path that is right for you!
 

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thank you so much!!! i really appreciate your honesty and candor! i completely understand about the fish issue...i think at this point i am just scared and at a loss as to how to go about filling up that empty spot on our future dinner plates! LOL!<br><br><br><br>
and thanks for the 'location' info...i will definitely check it out. i guess i just get confused because the 2 friends i have who call themselves 'vegetarians' one eats chicken and the other eats fish....so i had no idea where the line is drawn.<br><br><br><br>
and another question: is it considered wrong to eat animal by-products? like cheeses and yoghurts and things like that? i only ask this...well, mostly because you don't have to kill a cow to get milk and produce cheese...altho i'm sure they're not living in utopia...sigh... but my children are IN LOVE with this kind of stuff and as of right now i see no BIG problem with eating by-products....any help? LOL thank you SO MUCH!!
 

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Congrats on taking an important and healthy step in your life! It is very rewarding for your body, mind, and the animals!<br><br><br><br>
Cooking vegan is no different from any other types of cooking. I use the internet a lot for cooking purposes. For example, if I want to know how to make something vegan, for example chocolate chip cookies, I do a search for "vegan chocolate chip cookies".<br><br><br><br>
There are many meat dishes where you can replace the meat with tofu or other soy substitutes. I find it fun trying to make popular meat dishes vegan. It's like a game/challenge for me! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/images/smilies/smiley.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title=":)"><br><br><br><br>
The recipe section in veggie boards has many good vegan and vegetarian recipes. <a href="http://www.veggieboards.com/boards/forumdisplay.php?f=142" target="_blank">http://www.veggieboards.com/boards/f...play.php?f=142</a><br><br><br><br>
Like bstutzma said, check out the "country" threads. <a href="http://www.veggieboards.com/boards/forumdisplay.php?f=77" target="_blank">http://www.veggieboards.com/boards/f...splay.php?f=77</a> You can find other European veg*ns there, even Germany!<br><br><br><br>
The website below has very good vegan recipes. It is called the Post Punk Kitchen. You can even buy their recipe book. I like it because the meals are not too complicated and the ingredients are not too unique that you can't find them in a health store. I like to add my own ingredients to some of the dishes to suit my needs/taste.<br><br><br><br><a href="http://www.theppk.com/" target="_blank">http://www.theppk.com/</a><br><br><br><br>
And take it slow. If you are worried about not being able to stay veggie, take it one day at a time, one meal at a time. Start easy, like eating one meat free meal per day. Do that for a week. Then try 3 days where you eat 2 meat-free meals per day for another week. And so on, and so on. That is just an example, you can try any way you like. Just be consistent and follow your heart.<br><br><br><br>
I know your mind and heart are in the right place. You can do it!!!! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/images/smilies/smiley.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title=":)">
 

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It is wonderful that you are thinking of going vegetarian. CONGRATULATIONS!!! It is a big step on most people's lives, and I understand why you are feeling a bit lost on many issues. Take things day by day, and you will learn slowly how to change your eating habits.<br><br><br><br>
But I just wanted to point out to you that that you mentioned that there is no killing entailed with the dairy cow. This is incorrect because in order for the cow to provide milk, the baby cow that she has given birth to is taken away from her (and this causes great emotional pain to both the mother and the baby because animals love their babies as much as humans do), and the baby cow sent to the slaughterhouse to end up on someone's dinner plate. Also, when the dairy cow is no longer profitable to the dairy farmer because she is no longer providing the amount of milk he expects her to produce, she is also sent to the slaughterhouse for food, and her skin becomes someone's shoes or handbag or belt.<br><br><br><br>
Dairy cows suffer greatly and are over-milked and live a completely unnatural life.
 

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omg, diana... see, THIS is why i have been feeling so conflicted and guilty lately...it seems like every 'truth' or thought i have had or known is being completely shattered...little by little i am realizing just how serious i am going to have to take this. i feel like i am seeing the world with a new pair of eyes and i am thoroughly disgusted with what i see...and every new perspective or insight brings out more questions in me...<br><br><br><br>
like my children for example...i want them to be healthy, but they are not old enough to understand this move i want to make or even why....how do i explain to them without making them biased....i mean, they LOVE meat...so how can i tell them now that it's 'bad'? i don't even want to tell them it's bad...i want them to choose for themselves, but they don't have the capacity to do that yet...they're 5, 4, and 7 months...sigh...<br><br><br><br>
and when we were shopping the other day...i was searching for veggie baby food...i found 2. EVERYTHING past the 8 month stage had meat...bio this...bio that...i was SO frustrated...i just feel so lost as to how to feed her...am i going to have to make it all myself? <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/images/smilies/sad.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title=":(">
 

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It seems the others have already answered your questions... So I just wanted to wish you well in your transition!<br><br><br><br>
I don't have any experience raising children, so I'll defer your latest questions to someone with kids. There is a whole section on the forum devoted to that topic btw, so you might find some helpful advice there. Some vegetarian parents raise their kids vegetarian as they feel it's the healthiest diet for their kids and the least cruel, while other parents do not (especially sometimes if their spouse still eats meat).
 

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<div class="quote-container"><span>Quote:</span>
<div class="quote-block">Originally Posted by <strong>jancrowley</strong> <a href="/forum/post/0"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style=""></a><br><br>
omg, diana... see, THIS is why i have been feeling so conflicted and guilty lately...it seems like every 'truth' or thought i have had or known is being completely shattered...little by little i am realizing just how serious i am going to have to take this. i feel like i am seeing the world with a new pair of eyes and i am thoroughly disgusted with what i see...and every new perspective or insight brings out more questions in me...<br><br><br><br>
like my children for example...i want them to be healthy, but they are not old enough to understand this move i want to make or even why....how do i explain to them without making them biased....i mean, they LOVE meat...so how can i tell them now that it's 'bad'? i don't even want to tell them it's bad...i want them to choose for themselves, but they don't have the capacity to do that yet...they're 5, 4, and 7 months...sigh...<br><br><br><br>
and when we were shopping the other day...i was searching for veggie baby food...i found 2. EVERYTHING past the 8 month stage had meat...bio this...bio that...i was SO frustrated...i just feel so lost as to how to feed her...am i going to have to make it all myself? <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/images/smilies/sad.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title=":("></div>
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The facts hit us hard when we realise them. What is absolutely amazing is how the Meat and Dairy Industry manages to HIDE the truth from us. They are extremely powerful.<br><br><br><br>
Please don't go on any guilt trips. That will not help anyone, and least of all you.<br><br><br><br>
How about you just start making slow changes, bit by bit, with the aim to become a full-fledged vegetarian, let's say, by Christmas. This will give you plenty of time to research, to experiment with recipes and see which ones your children like. Children are very flexible, you know. As long as what they're eating is tasty, they'll eat it!!!<br><br><br><br>
Don't panic!!!! Just one day at a time... Okay???<br><br><br><br>
You don't say if you are German, or if you are an expatriate living in Germany. But if you speak German, here is a link to the German Vegetarian Association: <a href="http://www.vegetarierbund.de/index.htm" target="_blank">http://www.vegetarierbund.de/index.htm</a><br><br><br><br>
If you don't speak German, so many Germans speak English, that I'm sure if you write to them, someone will be able to help you out. Germany has many vegetarians and vegans!!!!
 

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Diana, that was a great post. Especially about taking it slowly and not feeling guilty. I completely agree.<br><br><br><br>
jancrowley - I don't know anything about raising kids. But I do know that when I was at baby food stage, my parents simply made dishes that were healthy, no salt, etc - suitable for babies nutritionally, but that were 'adult' meals because I couldn't chew them - for all the family to eat. They simply put my serving for a food processor before they served it to me. I don't know if this is safe or a good idea, but I thought I'd throw it out there as a suggestion.
 

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bstutzma and Diana put everything into words better than I could have!<br><br><br><br>
I just want to congratulate you for asking questions and educating yourself about vegetarianism and veganism. I can tell that you are a compassionate person, and your conviction will help you succeed should you choose to follow this path. I wish you the best of luck during your journey. We are here to help you along the way. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/images/smilies/smiley.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title=":)">
 

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<div class="quote-container"><span>Quote:</span>
<div class="quote-block">Originally Posted by <strong>jancrowley</strong> <a href="/forum/post/0"><img alt="View Post" class="inlineimg" src="/img/forum/go_quote.gif" style=""></a><br><br><br>
and another question: is it considered wrong to eat animal by-products? like cheeses and yoghurts and things like that? i only ask this...well, mostly because you don't have to kill a cow to get milk and produce cheese...altho i'm sure they're not living in utopia...sigh... but my children are IN LOVE with this kind of stuff and as of right now i see no BIG problem with eating by-products....any help? LOL thank you SO MUCH!!</div>
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I completely agree that its ok to take it slow. And there are ways to at least make it "better" for the dairy cows, by buying your cheese and yogurt from organic companies that you trust, who treat the animals much better than conventional farms. That way, you can give your children the foods they like, but still take a position that says, "I care about how animals are treated!" Going vegan is another way to do this, but again, its really ok to take it slow! Many of us are still in that transition. I currently buy organic dairy products for my family (like cheese and yogurt). Welcome to veggieboards!!!
 

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wowowowow! thank you all so much! i am really diggin the support and encouragement and open-mindedness here! i have been trying to self-educate today LOL and from reading some other threads i realize how ridiculous i sounded...<br><br><br><br>
and, diane...we are americans, but we are german residents. my hubs works for the military here. so, not only am i confronted with the daunting task of educating myself about food labels...but i am also having to read them in german...thankfully most of the words i either already know or can guess correctly on. my german's not that bad, but it's only extensive enough to cover my basic consumer activities...i have a much harder time with conversational german...prolly cuz it's the 5th language under my belt and my brain is full! HA! <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/images/smilies/wink3.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title=";)"><br><br><br><br>
and i really do think we will have to start slowly...i was looking through my pantry and i would have to toss out SO MUCH FOOD to strip it of things containing by-products...is it silly of me to feel a bit remorseful about it? LOL...like i am sitting here staring at the last 'milk & honey' cookie in this package and i swear i will really miss it..<br><br><br><br>
i guess i need to stop looking at the big picture and just focus more on today and what i can do better tomorrow. you all are so wonderful. thank you from the bottom of my heart for all your support and honesty. i have learned so much even from my first post this morning...it's simply amazing. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/images/smilies/smiley.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title=":)">
 

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oh, and isowish~ i tried making my own baby food with my first two children, but it turned out SO coarse and thick... i felt like i was feeding them glue....and using water or broth didn't help because the mash just kept separating from the liquid...do you have any suggestions for that? or would your parents know? sorry...i guess that would be a better question for the kids forum...but i tried to post there earlier and couldn't. <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/images/smilies/sad.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title=":(">
 

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I agree with what everyone has said so far. Taking it slow is a good way to start. Just take it one meal at a time and do the best you can every day. If you suddenly discover there's broth or gelatin or something like that in your food, call it a learning experience and move on. Learn to read packages and get comfortable with asking questions in restaurants. Start collecting cookbooks and learning how to cook vegetarian meals. Baking without eggs and milk is surprisingly easy if you have a recipe.<br><br><br><br>
As far as the kids go, depending on their ages, it might be an easier transition for them than you think. You might try doing what I'm doing (my kids aren't vegetarian yet.) I feed them only vegetarian food at home. At restaurants, they're free to make their own choice. They've been choosing meatless meals on their own more and more. My daughter is almost vegetarian. She's starting to realize that eating meat is gross when you actually think about what you're eating. My son is starting to think of meat as an "every once in a while" food (he's older and more set in his ways.) My husband is down to eating meat once a week (he was vegetarian for a whole month and was getting frustrated so he decided to take it a bit slower.)<br><br><br><br>
As far as baby foods go, my kids never ate baby food with meat in it. They didn't like it so I didn't force them. I figured that if God wanted babies to eat meat, he would've given them teeth sooner. They weren't big fans of the vegetable or fruit baby foods either (they liked the bananas and peaches and that was about it.) They turned out fine. Anyway, there's a whole board here on raising vegetarian children where you can loads of advice.
 

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You might get some helpful feedback from the discussion boards at <a href="http://www.vegfamily.com" target="_blank">www.vegfamily.com</a> regarding baby food. My impression is that a lot of them will mash up whatever is on their plate and feed it to the baby (green beans, pasta, tofu, etc.). One of my nieces was a determined self-feeder, even before she had really mastered the pinching skill to pick stuff up, so my sister would let her grab and gnaw on food pieces or let her try to see how much applesauce she could eat with her bare hands. Yes, she had a messy baby to clean up, but at least she was a happy baby!<br><br><br><br>
When I went vegetarian, I was really on a budget, so I finished up what few emat products were in my cupboard. Go ahead and make a gradual transition. A lot of us have been there.
 

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taking your time is the best way to go and I believe if you go with that route, you'll be less likely to turn back or change you mind!<br><br><br><br>
I started off by eating less meat and milk, then tried some veggie burgers, then cut out meat entirely, then started cutting out certain types of dairy, etc.<br><br>
now I'm vegan and the entire process wasn't really all that bad...however, diving right in could have been much difficult, I'm sure.<br><br><br><br>
go at your own pace and good luck with the transition!!!
 

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I just wanted to also say good luck in your transition to veg*nism! And I'm also interested in hearing about the situation in Germany as I'm going there next summer. I had gotten the impression that it was more veg-friendly....but I could have been misguided by my German textbook....<br><br>
Anyway, good luck again! The people on these boards are great!
 

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Congrats on your decision!<br><br>
Everyone has given such great advice so far-<br><br>
I can only add a few words of encouragement... With research and practice, the whole thing becomes much easier. I hope you and your family will enjoy the journey <img alt="" class="inlineimg" src="/images/smilies/smiley.gif" style="border:0px solid;" title=":)"><br><br><br><br>
And do check out this really great thread:<br><br><a href="http://www.veggieboards.com/boards/showthread.php?t=50249" target="_blank">http://www.veggieboards.com/boards/s...ad.php?t=50249</a><br><br><br><br>
I also highly recommend doing as much reading as you can... both on line and on paper.<br><br>
The book that helped me the most in the begining isL Becoming Vegetarian By Brenda Davis and Vesanto Melina<br><br><br><br>
Here is another link for some more great reads:<br><br><a href="http://www.veggieboards.com/boards/showthread.php?t=26749" target="_blank">http://www.veggieboards.com/boards/s...ad.php?t=26749</a>
 
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