Vegetarianism: Fad or For Real?

April 29, 2010
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Is vegetarianism just a trend, or is there a deeper aspect to it? It seems that nowadays, teens (as well as many people) are converting to vegetarianism. But I have noticed that more often than not, it is just a temporary switch because once they crave a hamburger, they switch back. This leads me to believe that they are converting for the wrong reasons.

Don’t switch because it is hip. If you wake up one morning and spontaneously decide to convert just to say that you did, I’d call you crazy. Switching with no research, with no prior knowledge, and no idea is going to take its toll on you - not only will you most likely end up switching back, but it could be unhealthy if you don’t know what you are doing. In fact, if you can make the switch without any prior knowledge, without switching back, I give you a lot of credit.

If you are committed to a meatless lifestyle, the switch should be easy. A person should be ready to give it up for the rest of his or her life. Trying it out may be the best option. Giving up meat for a month or even a week just to see if you like and feel good about the change is probably a wise decision, just as long as you have recipes for substitutes to the food you are now no longer taking into your body. Perhaps it would also be intelligent to buy meatless foods and substitutes beforehand, while you are still in the omnivorous stage, so you know if you like the food or not. Food is a huge part of life and you should be able to enjoy what you are taking in, as well as feel good about it.

As much as I hate to admit it, you lose a lot when you cut meat out of your diet. What’s important for a vegetarian is getting all the nutrition you are now losing back healthily. Iron and protein are two of these nutrients. But getting them back into your diet is easy and definitely not impossible. I have been a strong, strict vegetarian for over eleven years straight and I never plan on turning back. I have not stopped because I liked the substitutes that I had readily available at the time, and it feels good knowing that I’m not eating another animal that had a life just as my own. I am a healthy growing teen with an average weight. I am not vitamin-deficient in anything because I make sure I meet the daily requirements with all my vitamins and minerals, not just the ones I don’t get as much of by not eating meat. I use myself as an example of a success story.

If you chose to switch to vegetarianism, I commend you and congratulate you. The only thing I ask is that you make the final switch when you are positive you know it is what you want.

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This article has 4 comments. Post your own now!

Chloe27 said...
Jun. 2, 2010 at 10:38 pm
Should be *Now going into...
Chloe27 said...
Jun. 2, 2010 at 10:37 pm

I've been a vegetarian since first grade. I am not going into Freshmen year of high school. I decided when I was little I didn't want to eat animals. The facts you spoke about, I learned later. I have progressed into a strict vegetarian. (No gelatin in pills, shampoo, etc) I am not a vegan, but maybe someday I will be. I will definitely research then.

Your article was good. It helps people make the right decision.

Darika replied...
Jun. 3, 2010 at 1:07 pm
Thank you so much!  I love hearing that other people have the same views as me.  Way to be a strict vegetarian!
I'm at a transition point in becoming a vegan where I'm trying out some of the foods before I make the complete switch.  If you're looking for recommendations, Silk soy milk and Silk soy yogurt, Toffuti vegan ice cream, and Amy's mac & soy cheese are all really great tasting!
Chloe27 replied...
Jun. 4, 2010 at 11:03 am
I think I might become a vegan when I'm out of my parent's houses. (Divorced). Thanks for the suggestions. I just don't want to be even more of a burden on my parents then I am now. I'm the only strict vegetarian in the family. Only one close is my mom, and she still eats fish.
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