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Vegetarianism/ Veganism

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I am NOT veggie; my partner is lacto-ovo, though avoids dairy for other reasons to do with arthritis)  and so is one of my daughters and both her children. The only hassles I get are from my 14 y/o vegan grandson. He is autistic, and everything is precise for him - there are Rules and he knows I am not doing the Right Thing. Morally he is probably right ( well, OK, he is right !) but I am not changing now - though in fact given my partner, I mostly eat veggie when we are both in the same place at the same time. These days in the UK there seems to be no stigma except when people are pushy about it.

 

On the other hand, it is in one way very useful that the grandson is learning to see that not everyone has to live by his rules; he has cast off the odd friend for eating meat, but is conflicted about his beloved Granny. This is actually a good thing, as if he is to survive in the world, he needs to accept that others live differently.

 

I did hear a joke that amused me with its ring of truth a few days ago:


 

Quote

 

How do you know someone is vegan ? Wait 5 minutes and they will tell you.

 

How do you know someone is vegetarian ? Invite them to dinner and they will tell you as you all sit down to eat a roast chicken.

 

 

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I slowly, slowly kinda slid away from eating meat before becoming ovo-lacto vegetarian about two  one(?) years back. Now that I'm living with my (mostly) vegan fiancée, we live vegan at home and  vegetarian when going out to eat and there are no vegan options.

 

My first experience with vegans was a group about twenty years back wen I was a teenager and those were cliche adolescent vegans, kinda pushing it, claiming it was healthier and more natural  - which was so obviously BS that it put me off. To be fair it came up in a conversation at a party, they didn't assault me with their opinion.

 

But ever since then I ONLY met vegetarians/vegans that were very shy almost apologetic about it - like when offering some cookies to someone at Christmas they VERY carefully asked if those were vegan and when I told them 'sadly no' they were über-happy that I even KNEW what they meant. 

 

On the other hand in the boarding house where I work and share lunch with the students there is no vegan option, and almost all of the students are such aggressive meat-eaters that they start a major ****-storm every time when the ONE vegetarian day each week comes around. That was first introduced to address the problem that WE as a society eat an unhealthy amount of meat so ONE (!) lunch each week was to be vegetarian only. Mind you NOT breakfast and dinner, they get 'Wurst' just fine. It was so bad they move the day to Friday where less students have to 'endure' it because almost all of them go home for the weekend anyway and many skip lunch for an earlier departure.

 

The students regularly cuss out vegetarians and the vegetarian option and some even DEMAND to have a 'meat only day' so those evil vegetarians get forced to eat meat as they are forced to NOT eat meat ONCE.

 

I've encountered "But you eat Wurst, right?", "Fish IS vegetarian." and "Just peel it off" quite often since weening off meat completely.

 

I've been to weddings where the vegetarian option was dry 'Knödel' without any kind of sauce and sometimes at work they seem to be of the mind that vegetarians can use ketchup and then it will be a full meals. Vegetables are often prepared with a kind of bacon in it around here and I have been served mushroom sauce with bacon after explicitly stating that I'm vegetarian at a restaurant. A friend has a caterer at work who thinks salami pizza is a valid vegetarian option...

 

I've never, ever, ever been bothered by a vegetarian/vegan when I was still eating meat. I've been ridiculed and called names and questioned since I stopped. To be clear - all my FRIENDS are great about it, meat-eater or not. But acquaintances and strangers from time to time feel they have the right to comment and judge or simply ignore.

 

So sorry @Fuzzbucket - I love you but I HATE that particular joke from experience.

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37 minutes ago, Herk said:

So sorry @Fuzzbucket - I love you but I HATE that particular joke from experience.

 

I would apologise, but it's YOU... :lol: :wub:

 

When my veggie daughter was in hospital they brought her fish every day and every day she said vegetarians don't eat fish and every day they said yes they do, and every day she said...

 

Students are horrible people, in my experience (and yes, I likely was when I was one !)

 

I did go to an all vegan party recently - a vegan mom's baby shower. It was vile. Even my partner though the food was unimaginative and tasteless; basically the only eatable things were the cakey things. - and the woman who had hired the caterers told them how wonderful it all was. I happen to loathe the taste of tofu - which was prevalent - but he likes it and even he ....

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8 minutes ago, Fuzzbucket said:

When my veggie daughter was in hospital they brought her fish every day and every day she said vegetarians don't eat fish and every day they said yes they do, and every day she said...

 

 

 

I really don't get why the DEFAULT option in hospitals and the like isn't vegetarian. aside from allergies NO ONE would have a problem with that. But around here the default is still a meat meal, which is bad for vegetarians and often bad for muslims, hindus, choose your pick. No religion in the world has a problem with brokkoli.

 

Also why does a single muslim get his very own meal when there's pork in the regular meat meal instead of just changing it to vegetarian by default, while we can't have a vegan option for the vegan student? (She's gone now but it's the principle). How is some vague religious tradition (because OF COURSE they drink alcohol so it'S not as if they take their religion serious otherwise) more important than a fact based moral decision?

 

Coming to think of it - go vegan by default and you have the lactose intolerant covered too. No one will die if you have to wait one to three days to get dairy into you.

 

It's really bad when you have bad/boring food - luckily my Beloved is a great cook and has a lot of experience. It really isn't the tofu's fault you know. It's the cook ;)

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It IS the tofu's fault. My partner is an excellent cook. And I have had it in a fancy Indian restaurant, and in a Japanese one. I just do not like the taste. I can OCCASIONALLY swallow it if it's smoked. (And LOADS of people hate broccoli, you know !)

 

I absolutely agree with you about options etc. - the vegan student should have been catered for. Though I do think that in hospitals a lot of people who weren't accustomed to veggie food might find it depressing and might recover more slowly.

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Hearing about that whole meatless day at school drama I feel really blessed to live in Finland and go to the exact university of applied sciences that I go to. We have a pretty good system at the cafeteria as the kitchen always prepares two kinds of meat dishes (a porkless option I guess?) and one vegetarian dish to choose from. So you can choose what you want to have and everyone wins - vegetarians get to not eat meat, omnivores get to eat meat. Can't say how things are in the comprehensive schools and upper secondary schools of Finland nowadays (I should ask my pesco-vegetarian younger sister), but I'd imagine that they also have at least some kind of a vegetarian option these days. Overall I feel like the atmosphere in Finland is probably pretty accepting of vegetarians at least when comparing it to these stories of how different it can be elsewhere. What I'm used to getting is a bit of a tense and awkward look from people right when it's revealed that I'm a vegetarian, but even that usually passes when I make it clear that I'm not there to judge anyone else for eating meat.

 

I also have a similar thing going on with my boyfriend as Fuzzbucket. 🙂 He eats meat and I'd never ask him to give it up just for my sake. We've never had an issue despite that, as we simply cook the meat separately and it never touches my food. I'm assuming you do something similar.

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Yes - and he is happy to cook meat for me, just doesn't eat it. Separate dishes, of course.

 

A friend of mine with a Jewish buddy saw him tucking into a pork casserole and asked him about it and he said "No-one told me it was pork. If no one told me, it isn't pork - how would I know ? So I shall eat it unless I am actually told it is pork."

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I stopped eating meat nearly two years ago. I always thought that vegetarians "had a point" but couldn't see myself giving up some of my favorite foods... But then I started reading some things, at first totally unrelated to vegetarianism/veganism, but they made me question some things and that led me to explore a little more, to ask myself some questions. Given my morals and what I normally stand for, it just didn't seem right to continue participating in the present system. So I just decided to stop. As of now, I'm an lacto-ovo vegetarian, but long term I do plan to become vegan. That transition may be harder than giving up meat and fish, not only because I am a crazy lover of cheese (which I actually only eat when I visit family in France), but because it can be hard to manage in some social situations (as in, you go to a "normal" restaurant and there's always at least one vegetarian option, but a vegan option is not so easy to find, at least not in my country - and there's always that one friend that doesn't even want to try a veggie or veggie-friendly restaurant,  even when there's plenty of things they would like 🙄) and as I still live with my father and my sister, and my dad cooks 50% of the time, I would feel bad asking to accommodate for me each time (right now we manage pretty well). Still, I try to use as little dairy (mostly yoghurts on my day to day) and eggs as possible, because I acknowledge the problems that come with consuming both. I think I'll make a full transition when I finally live on my own.

 

Anyway, I personally don't see anything bad in eating meat per se, it's the whole production system that bothers me and I'd rather not participate if I can. 😊

 

As others have commented before, I too have noticed that some people are just insufferable when they find out you're vegetarian. I don't mind explaining why I became vegetarian (moral and ecological reasons, mostly), but I don't feel like justifying myself each time. As I always tell people who insist: I'm not saying you should not eat meat (even if I'd love if you didn't, of course) or that you're a monster or immoral if you do; I just feel it doesn't sit right with my ethics. 

I don't know why people try to find reasons why I should eat meat again? Or situations in which it would be alright for me to eat meat? Like, honestly, I don't bother anyone. If I have to go to someone's, I politely ask if I should bring my own food, specifying that they should not feel obligated to make something just for me (thought I greatly appreciate it when they think about it before I have to ask!).  And yeah, if I'm with friends and we are eating out, I do check if there's at least one or two veggie options, otherwise I ask them if we can go elsewhere and it doesn't bother them - as it wouldn't bother me to do the same if someone told me they don't see anything they like, meat-eater or not. 

Anyway, the prodding questions and "gentle" ribbing were fine the first couple of months, but now they're just plain annoying. 

 

6 hours ago, Herk said:

On the other hand in the boarding house where I work and share lunch with the students there is no vegan option, and almost all of the students are such aggressive meat-eaters that they start a major ****-storm every time when the ONE vegetarian day each week comes around.

That's just sad, honestly. I guess I'm pretty lucky, in our Uni there's always a vegan menu (and the normal menu has normally one or two vegetarian-friendly options) and everyone's happy.

Some people don't realize that some dishes are originally already vegetarian or even vegan (or the change is easily made). In my country gazpacho, pisto, veggie rice and many others are classic dishes that don't even have dairy or egg! But some people are like that... Give them this dishes without saying anything, they'll be happy. Point out "and it's veggie friendly" and they'll make a fuss. 🙄Luckily, my experience is mostly positive, as most friends and family are happy to try veggie dishes, especially if I cooked them!

 

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To those in the UK - may I recommend the vegan range of "cheese" by Sheese.

 

https://www.buteisland.com/

 

It's very good. I even like it. (Violife, by contrast, contains NO protein, so is not a good substitute.)

Edited by Fuzzbucket

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Just to be clear - my boarding house DOES have a vegetarian option but the houses each cook for themselves so it would be impossible to provide too many options. BUT I don't get why the Muslim gets to have his pork-free MEAT dish two times a week instead of just eating the veggie dish. It puts more strain on the cooks for purely luxurious reasons. As someone else pointed out - many dishes are vegetarian by nature, many even vegan if you go Indian or some other 'exotic' cuisine.

 

Also in regards to hospitals, Fuzz - I'm not talking about depriving everyone of their meat. I'm talking about the 'default' that you get when you are a new patient and haven't been able to say what you want yet. In Germany out of the 3 or so dishes you get to choose from (reg1 with meat/ reg 2 with meat but often 'lighter' /veggie) they always order a few extras for new patients that might arrive and it's ALWAYS regular meal 1 instead of the veggie option. Which makes the first 1 to 3 days (weekend) at a hospital really difficult for vegetarians/Muslims/other special eaters. Veggie option wuld make MUCH more sense.

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For MYSELF, myself, personally... I am not a vegetarian,much less vegan ( unrepentant omnivore, here. ;) )

 

THAT being said I don't think there is anything inherently WRONG with making that choice.... just that I don't think I could, myself, personally.

 

I WILL also comment that I think the behavior of the 'meat-eaters'  that @Herk mentioned was pretty reprehensible.

JUST because I choose to eat meat ( and dairy and eggs ) doesn't mean that there aren't other ways of thinking and points of view on the matter. People may have a variety of reasons for choosing NOT to partake in meat. AND IF I disagree with them it doesn't mean that I shouldn't' treat others who happen to think about it differently than I do with respect. In FACT, even IF I DO normally eat meat I wouldn't be opposed to TRYING the veggie dishes, necessarily. Who knows! If you try them you may even FIND that you actually LIKE some of those meatless dishes, whether you are a full time vegetarian or NOT. IMHO, they shouldn't have created so much DRAMA about it.

 

 

Edited by JavaTigress

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@JavaTigress I bet you quite often DO have meatless dishes. Never have Mac and cheese ? Pizza Margherita ? Four cheese Pizza ? Scrambled eggs ? Spring Rolls ? Pasta Arrabiata....

 

Many people - when faced with this subject - suddenly seem to feel that they have meat or fish with every meal. But we don't.

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6 minutes ago, Fuzzbucket said:

@JavaTigress I bet you quite often DO have meatless dishes. Never have Mac and cheese ? Pizza Margherita ? Four cheese Pizza ? Scrambled eggs ? Spring Rolls ? Pasta Arrabiata....

 

Many people - when faced with this subject - suddenly seem to feel that they have meat or fish with every meal. But we don't.

That is very likely true. AS someone pointed out... some dishes are meatless by nature, while OTHER dishes can be made with or without meat ( like pizza!).

AND as that same individual pointed out, some cuisines make far less use of meat than others do.

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So happy I found this thread!!

 

I've just come up on my one-year anniversary of being vegan, and I've honestly never felt healthier or happier. Over the last few months I've had many people, friends and family, tell me how much healthier I look - it feels really good tbh XD

 

I don't do it for the health benefits, though. Lord knows I still snack on all sorts of junk food, crisps, and biscuits (I'm looking at you, Oreos). Personally I do it for the animals and the environment. Even though the egg and dairy industries don't seem bad because it's not directly a dead animal, so much suffering still goes into it and it breaks my heart.

 

And given the recent news about how we have 12 years left before global warming becomes irreversible, and how the meat, dairy, and egg industries are one of the main contributors... Yeah, it's something I'm pretty passionate about haha

 

Seriously though, not only is it a healthy diet, but it tastes SO darn good. If anyone ever wants vegan recipes please PM me... I'd love to share!

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I want to become vegetarian (because animals), but, like  Lythiaren  said, it's kinda unnatural for people.... And meat is the only way to get certain types of vitamins/amino acids.....

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1 hour ago, InfiniteGalaxiezz05 said:

I want to become vegetarian (because animals), but, like  Lythiaren  said, it's kinda unnatural for people.... And meat is the only way to get certain types of vitamins/amino acids.....

 

Veganism does have the issue that you need to get B12 from someplace and as such must take it as a supplement or eat products fortified with it. Vegetarianism in general however does not automatically come with that issue if you still continue to eat some animal products. Those animal products do not have to be meat or fish. I myself have been an ovo-lacto vegetarian for 5 years (ovo-lacto meaning I eat eggs and dairy) and continue to have great blood values with absolutely no deficiencies despite that. I do not plan out my diet in any way, spend time pondering nutritional values or eat supplements yet I stay perfectly healthy on my diet just by making sure I eat colorful meals every once in a while. So yeah, if you want to pursue vegetarianism itself and not specifically the extreme form which is veganism, I would say there's no reason to worry really.

 

In the end, if cutting out all meat and fish out of your diet feels like too much, you could also try to simply reduce the amount of meat you consume and see if that already makes you feel better. I myself did that for two years or so before becoming a vegetarian, but eventually felt that to me personally it was not enough and went a step further.

 

I hope this did not sound too preachy as that was not my intention. Just wanted to clarify that vegetarianism does not automatically lead to deficiencies and whatnot. Meat is not the only way, essentially.

Edited by Nagapie

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2 hours ago, InfiniteGalaxiezz05 said:

I want to become vegetarian (because animals), but, like  Lythiaren  said, it's kinda unnatural for people.... And meat is the only way to get certain types of vitamins/amino acids.....

 

That is simply not true. Just so you know. It is a view often put about by anti-vegetarians.  All the evidence suggests that vegetarianism is the healthiest option. And before anyone starts to scream - I used to work in Public Health along with doctors and dietitians. They all said the same. Two of the three dietitians were vegetarian.

 

https://www.health.harvard.edu/staying-healthy/becoming-a-vegetarian

 

https://www.cambridge.org/core/journals/proceedings-of-the-nutrition-society/article/health-benefits-of-a-vegetarian-diet/8774207AE8B2CCB4A90D6ADDBC9EA89F (you have to pay to read the whole thing.)

 

https://www.independent.co.uk/life-style/health-and-families/features/5-reasons-a-vegetarian-diet-is-good-for-you-a6710096.html

 

I am the only omnivore in our family, which includes many vegetarians and a vegan. I have no veggie axe to grid here. Everyone is healthy; only the vegan tales a supplement - and I THINK in fact many vegan foods have B12 added - but as he is also autistic and a fussy eater, his mother takes the safe route.

Edited by Fuzzbucket

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Just gonna say, vegans don’t always need B12 supplements. If you eat right, you don’t need to take any vitamin supplements at all. I had a blood test last month and came back perfect :)

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I never came in here before when it seemed to be a debate thread. I like the idea of a friendly chat with other veggies (or veggie-friendly people like Fuzz!), though! 😀

I've been mostly-veggie for most of my life. I was raised "pescatarian" (lacto/ovo/seafood), until sometime in my early teens when my family reintroduced chicken into their diets. I never really liked it and switched back pretty quickly to seafood-only, and then went full veggie (lacto/ovo) some 10-ish years ago.
 

Now I live with my omni husband and our pack of carnivores (2 dogs and 3 cats), but at least my husband eats mostly-vegetarian at home with me. He's the cook in the family and he doesn't usually want to make two meals! 

I'm definitely interested in sharing recipes! Especially anything that can be easily dumped into a crock pot. 😁

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9 hours ago, RealWilliamShakespeare said:

Just gonna say, vegans don’t always need B12 supplements. If you eat right, you don’t need to take any vitamin supplements at all. I had a blood test last month and came back perfect :)

 

I actually revisited this thought because of your comment and apparently nowadays even some vegan organizations have started to try and fix the misunderstanding that a fully plant-based diet would be able to naturally supply a person with B12.

 

https://www.vegansociety.com/resources/nutrition-and-health/nutrients/vitamin-b12/what-every-vegan-should-know-about-vitamin-b12

 

https://veganhealth.org/vitamin-b12/

 

It's still fact that you need to either consume products fortified by synthetic B12 or get it via supplements. Your body may have enough B12 stored up to get you through the first few years without experiencing syptoms of a deficiency, but if you do not take care of your B12 in the long run you're essentially playing with fire. Even a mild deficiency can increase your risk of dementia, heart disease and stroke while a severe deficiency can cause permanent damage to your nervous system if left untreated. The thing which surprised me as well was that apparently a B12 deficiency might not even show in a blood test, especially in individuals that consume algae. Then again another source says that it could be detected by checking the amount of homocysteine in the blood.

 

https://medium.com/feed-your-brain/vitamin-b12-deficiency-what-every-vegetarian-and-vegan-should-know-5626c29b8a98

 

Just felt that I needed to point this out as B12 deficiency is something you really don't want to mess with. Too many times you hear of vegans who have impaired themselves by refusing to accept that there isn't a way to get it naturally.

 

Edit: Found out that the second site I linked also had some individual cases of vegans who suffered from the deficiency. Might be an interesting read.

 

https://veganhealth.org/individual-cases-of-b12-deficiency-in-vegans/

 

And as a disclaimer, it is not only vegans that can suffer from this. Even vegetarians may be affected if they consume only minimal amounts of animal products. The condition is still more common in vegans however.

Edited by Nagapie

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I made myself a tofu stir fry yesterday and it was really tasty. :3

I hope it's the same where you all live: supermarkets in the UK have really been supporting vegetarians and vegans in the last few years.
The "meat substitute" foods like veggie sausages are still kinda expensive, but there are lots of options and so many plant milks to choose from now! Almost all of the plant milks are fortified with B12 too, so that's really good.

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@Harebelle - Aldi plant "milks" are MUCH cheaper than most. And those who use them in my family much prefer them to Tesco, Sainsburys or even Alpro. Aldi also have a nice range of veggie meals. too - at the same prices as non-veggie..

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When I hear the word "Vegetarian", I immediately think of non-meat products.

 

I know that vegans have it rough, taking into account that meat is more sought after in the culinary world than legumes - especially in France, where meat is highly sought after in gourmet restaurants. I'm still wondering though...is it possible for a vegan to actually BE allergic to vegetables? The powers of genetics knows no bounds, so...it might be possible???

 

Also...my subject in cookery is all about vegetables so...is anyone nice enough to explain to me the culinary terms (A.K.A french terms) when concerning legumes? :3

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2 hours ago, Ether-Equinox said:

When I hear the word "Vegetarian", I immediately think of non-meat products.

 

I know that vegans have it rough, taking into account that meat is more sought after in the culinary world than legumes - especially in France, where meat is highly sought after in gourmet restaurants. I'm still wondering though...is it possible for a vegan to actually BE allergic to vegetables? The powers of genetics knows no bounds, so...it might be possible???

 

Also...my subject in cookery is all about vegetables so...is anyone nice enough to explain to me the culinary terms (A.K.A french terms) when concerning legumes? :3

 

Anyone can be allergic to anything. Celery is actually a really common allergen. Being vegan doesn’t give you allergy immunity, so yes, vegans can be allergic to some vegetables. Having an allergy to ALL vegetables I don’t think is a thing though, because they’re all from such different groups.

 

I’m also not sure what you’re asking about culinary terms regarding legumes? If by “culinary terms” you mean things like “julienne” and “sauté” they can applicable to legume dishes? Is that what you mean?

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