Vegetarianism comes in various forms
Frequently, I’m asked about my diet. Not the lose 10 pounds in 10 days sort of diet, but my daily choice of food.
Since I’m a pescatarLDn PDny IRONV finG LW GLIfiFuOW WR SURFHVV wKDW Py daily diet consists of. lften people ask me if I indulge daily on things like pasta and salad instead of making non-traditional substitutes. And while I love these two foods, it would equal a very dangerous, unbalanced diet.
Five years ago when I told my family I was becoming a vegetarian, you would have sworn it was the end of the world.
My mother looked shocked and disheartened. My grandmother asked me what trouble-making friend had turned me onto this irrational idea. And my father stood by not surprised but concerned that in a colOHJH GRUP , wRuOGn’W finG the right nutrition.
So what is the right way to balancing a veggiebased diet and why face a challenge like that at all?
Before I go any further, OHW’V GHfinH VRPH WKLnJV. There are various types of vegetarianism, which most people don’t typically understand. ln the extreme side are vegans. A vegan is someone who does not eat any animal products or byproducts, including eggs and dairy.
ln the other hand, the less extreme version is a vegetarian, who does not HDW WKH flHVK RI Dny DnLPDO. This means they do consume some dairy products and eggs, but no meat or chicken.
My lifestyle follows pescatarian diet, which a fancy term for people who do not eat meat or poultry but do consume fiVK DnG RWKHU DnLmal byproducts.
Now for balancing that daily diet. WKLOH GLIfiFuOW DW fiUVW, LW LVn’W TuLWH as painful as people think.
For anyone who misses those weekend sloppy joes or the occasional grilled hot dog, there are meat alternatives.
My mother was big on WKHVH wKHn , fiUVW FKDnJHG my eating preferences. However, these are not something one should eat regularly. They are loaded with sodium, cholesterol and fats. Instead, the balanced diet includes items like beans, nuts, sprouts, lentils and other natural proteins, vitamins and minerals alternatives. a is
But why be a pescatarian, vegetarian or vegan? Several people I’ve encountered consider this being SLFNy RU GLIfiFuOW WR wRUN with. But as vegetarianism has become more popular across the world, many restaurants have started to add options to their menus that aren’t just salads.
There are great alternatives now compared to even 10 years ago. And often people don’t even notice there’s no meat on my plate at restaurants or in the food I prepare at home.
My mother, who KDV finDOOy FRPH around to the prospect of no meat, loves the black bean tacos I make. It’s one of her favorite dishes.
But still, the question of why is always on people’s minds.
Well, there are more reasons than I could possibly fiW Ln KHUH.
lne of the most important for me is vegetarians have lower risks of lifethreatening health issues. According to the American Heart Association, balanced vegetarian diets can protect against obesity, coronary heart disease, high blood pressure, some forms of cancer and certain types of diabetes because of lower intakes of bad cholesterol and more intakes of plant nutrients.
With my family history, all of this is a good thing.
But when someone asks me about my pescatarian lifestyle, I usually don’t rattle all this off to them. Instead I just always ask why they are a carnivores. The popular answer? Meat tastes good. Well, so can vegetarian food. I’ve even included that simple black bean tacos recipe to prove it. Black Bean Tacos 1 tbsp. olive oil 1 large can of Goya black beans
1 packet of taco seasoning 6 oz. frozen corn Season with black pepper and garlic powder
Rinse and drain black beans in a colander. Heat the one tablespoon of olive oil in a large frying pan. Add the wet black beans and thoroughly heat. Mix in the frozen corn. When the corn has thawed and cooked all the way, add half the taco seasoning, black pepper and garlic SRwGHU. ,I WKH WDFR fiOOLnJ is too salty, add a couple tablespoons of water. Serve wLWK DOO WKH fixLnJV.
Food for Thought Caitlin Burns