“You have just dined, and however scrupulously the slaughterhouse is concealed in the graceful distance of miles, there is complicity.”
― Ralph Waldo Emerson
I know it’s been a few weeks since my last post, and I’m sure the select few of you that love reading my posts have just been chomping at the bit for what exciting thing I’m going to talk about next (lol). Well, since Easter is coming up and everyone will be blindly stuffing their faces with chocolate, I figured I would talk about something a little relevant to how I will be celebrating it. So, prepare to have your worlds rocked today my friends, because I’m going to be telling you all about my journey into VEGANISM!
I know there’s a weird perception of vegans among quite a lot of people, and while I can’t really say I get why people are still asking vegans where they get their protein or telling us that “we’re designed to eat meat, look at our teeth! CANINES!” *chomps down on chicken leg full of fibres and flesh* oh gurrrrrrl… no thank you…
…I do understand why a lot of people question favouring a plant-based diet when all we’ve ever been taught is that we are carnivorous/ omnivorous, that we have eaten meat since the beginning of time and blah blah… I don’t know why it’s the norm but it just is (sadly).
Some of you may know that I have tried to be vegan a few times in my life. First, in 2014 when I decided I wanted to put this idea I had always had of how lovely it would be to not eat animals into practice. While I thought I felt quite strongly about this at the time, I lasted merely a week before I started caving and consuming again, mainly due to feeling that eating out with my friends etc was problematic (silly!), and felt like an absolute failure. I tried again in 2016, and lasted about 6 weeks. This time I read into veganism a little more, and felt much more knowledgeable and dedicated, but had definitely not informed myself enough about things like the right foods to eat to thrive on a plant-based diet and, once again, I failed.
Without thinking about the ethical reasons to go vegan it was interesting for me at the times I did try it, to actually learn what ingredients were going into all of the things I was eating. Reading labels to check for animal byproducts led to me learning a whole lot more about the way food we regularly eat is made and produced.
About a month ago I settled down for some netflix and literal chill with my bestie, and we watched a documentary called Cowspiracy. I think I wanted to watch it secretly because it was coming up to a year since I had last tried veganism and I kept thinking about how much I wanted to do it and succeed at it- I was intrigued. So, anyway, we watched the documentary and I was absolutely blown away at how much consumption and mass production of animal byproducts is destroying our environment, and how selfish it is that animals are mass produced, and raised purely for slaughter, and how the amount of food and water that is given to animals just raised for slaughter per year is enough to feed and give water to every single person on earth. I know, insane right?
So fast forward through some of the documentary, nutritionists, ex-slaughterhouse workers and many others discussed the awful practices in animal slaughterhouses and dairy farms, and that a plant-based diet is the absolute best for humans, with those living on a plant-based diet having minimal risk of obesity, heart disease, high blood pressure, diabetes, and other health related problems. The one thing that really messed with my head personally was one nutritionist who was explaining how anti-dairy he is, he went into detail about the purpose of a Cow’s milk being for her calf, and how this fluid was designed to turn that baby calf into a beast, a full-grown cow. He found it funny that women wonder why they have lumps in their breasts, and why they have fibroids, or men get ‘man-boobs’ and so on because the answer is right there in our fridges. It reminded me of the fact that women, after childbirth, produce milk to nourish and feed their babies, and that it’s pretty fucked up that once babies reach a certain age, there’s controversy about kids having breast milk- even expressed- but parents will happily supply their children with animal milk…
Here’s a link to watch a little snippet of him talking, or you can just go and watch cowspiracy for yourselves! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=toZ7Mr-ClCE
A regular vegan diet isn’t exactly the same as a plant-based diet. It, basically, includes a bit of ‘junk’ food, as well as all the healthy plant-based stuff, and for real ethical vegans, extends to things like not wearing any clothing, makeup or other products that contain animal byproducts.
Since watching the documentary, and doing some research through many journals and studies via my database searcher (that I’m supposed to be using for uni) there was no decision that needed to be made. I was, and am, going to be vegan, for myself, for the animals, for the environment, for everything. Now, while being 100% plant-based is my ultimate goal, I enjoy chowing down on crisps and biscuits as much as anyone, but being vegan has already helped me hugely cut down on the processed foods I eat, simply because I am being mindful to fuel my body with things that are going to make it run smoothly! Being a regular vegan for now is working for me, and I’m happy with that 🙂
We live in an age where information is so readily accessible to us, that there is no real argument that I feel could ever be put forward to me to dispute eating a vegan diet, because any people who disagree with it can simply look it up. I personally have read a lot about it, and know that what I am doing is right. All this rubbish about humans being designed to eat meat is, quite frankly, bullshit, and I think people say this to deflect the blame for animals being slaughtered and exploited from themselves and onto our ‘makeup/needs’.
PETA does a good job of explaining how humans aren’t designed to eat meat, here’s a shortened version of their article:
- carnivores have long sharp teeth and claws, to dismember and tear flesh and hide. Humans have small teeth, and soft short fingernails, similar to that of herbivorous animals. We also have molars for breaking down plants- something carnivores do not have. #notcarnivores
- Humans do not like blood. We are repulsed by the sight of an animal being gutted, intestines, blood and can not even gut and tear an animal to eat without the use of utensils. #notcarnivores
- The human digestive system is much more complex than that of carnivores, because we require it to be longer to absorb nutrients and digest fibre etc. Just like herbivores. #notcarnivores
- Humans stomach acids cannot break down raw meat the way a carnivore does, which is why it must be cooked for humans to consume without being as at risk of food poisoning etc. If our bodies were built to eat meat, we would not need to go to lengths to make the meat edible and digestible. #NOTCARNIVORES
- Furthermore, meat can cause heart disease in humans (but not carnivores) due to the high cholesterol and fat content, and research has shown that humans are getting far too much protein from consuming meat. #notcarnivores
to read the full article: http://www.peta.org/features/are-humans-supposed-to-eat-meat/
I think it is so easy to detach ourselves from the act of slaughtering animals, keeping them in poor conditions, feeding and injecting them with things that are unnatural for their bodies and health, to increase the speed and size of animals being produced for slaughter, when all we have to do as consumers is walk into a supermarket, and buy packaged products. Actually, I know that this detachment is easy, because I have spent my whole life participating in it. I feel like knowing what I know now, I could never willingly allow myself to contribute to such a damaging and inhumane way of consuming and living. I say inhumane because there is no humane way of killing, this word has been used to minimise the cruelty of killing animals, there’s no humane way of killing something that doesn’t want to die.
It’s easy to avoid the truth so that you can get back to enjoying your hunter’s chicken, or meat-feast pizza with extra cheese, while scrolling past images or videos of animals being exploited to ensure you aren’t put off your lunch. But as Marie Sarantakis said:
“…You should be bothered that its happening, not that you saw it.”
Before I go! If you’re looking to spice up your Easter, what better way to do so than changing the game and showering your family with Easter eggs that are absolutely cruelty-free?! all major supermarkets and health-food shops sell a range of delicious dairy free Easter treats 🙂
I hope you are all having a blessed week and are enjoying the transition into Spring as much as I am!