Plant-Based, Vegan, and labeling yourself.

After taking a yoga class a couple of weeks ago and listening to the daily reading about not harming, I immediately thought I need to stop eating animal products. I’ve always gravitated to a vegan diet naturally but I haven’t fully been fully vegan since 2010, which last for two years. I practiced the vegan diet for a little of week and at first felt great but a few days into it I began to question why I was doing this. I’ve been studying and trying to practice initiative eating, but this didn’t feel “initiative” to me. I was denying myself, a lot. I spent a road trip scrutinizing menus on where I could find something to eat and eventually found myself eating a plain lettuce salad and sandwich of iceberg lettuce and tomatoes at one point. I was hungry, a lot.

I thought back to the initiative eating principles of ending the mind set of “I can’t have this, or that”. I had been doing that the entire time. I was restricting on every level, which is what can lead into a down spiral of diet mentality and eating disorders. I do not want to tell myself I can’t have something, there is nothing appealing about eating a shredded iceberg lettuce sandwich. I want to eat something I want to eat. I decided at that moment, I don’t think a strict vegan/plant based diet is good for me.

I believe in the principles of eating vegan or plant based for the reasons of protecting our environment. Excessive meat eating is the worst thing for environment; deforestation of land for cattle raising, the amount of methane created by cattle increasing global warming, etc. If we are all eating in moderation and eating more plant based foods , than not, the environment will also benefit. The health benefits of plant based and vegan are also undeniable, a typical “bacon and eggs” diet of Americans will result in our nation’s biggest killer, heart disease. An initiative eating diet and eating in moderation though, can provide the same benefits. We can enjoy everything in moderation and exercise to care for our bodies to prevent heart disease. I still believe in eating a diet of MOSTLY fruits and vegetables. Much of initiative eating is eating what makes us feel good as well, eating a double cheeseburger with bacon and fries doesn’t make one feel great.

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