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Vegetarian

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    Vegetarian

    I was wondering if anyone out there is a vegetarian. I am becoming one or maybe I have become one and am planning on going to vegan if I can figure out what to eat. I have been feeling convicted about the treatment animals that are raised for human consumption receive. In fact I have wanted to do this for a number of years and after talking to DH found I have his support. In addition I have been reading some stuff about what they have found in cows milk and in cheese and am pretty horrified. i also don't like th etreatment of the animals that produce our eggs. I may just go with locally raised eggs where I know they have room to roam. For now I was wondering if anyone has been this way and could give me some information or let me learn form their experience. Oh and to those who think I'm crazy it actually is healthyier unless you replace meat with chocolate then it just tastes better!!!

    #2
    Re: Vegetarian

    I am so excited to see your post!

    I've been a vegetarian for over five years, and I've never looked back. I think it is a great choice, not only because eating meat-free dishes can be very frugal, but because meat-free choices are better for your body. If you're worried about not getting enough protein, concentrate on incorporating beans and tofu (and dairy products, if you want) into your diet, and you'll be just fine.

    I have tons of great books at home - I'll take a peek at what I've got and let you know. Check out the cookbook section at your local library; they might have something to get you started. There are zillions of vegetarian and vegan cookbooks on the market.

    I have been considering the switch to becoming vegan for some time now. I think it would make me a much healthier eater - I just have to take the plunge.

    I'm so glad your husband is supportive! When I met my SO, he wasn't vegetarian, but he listened to what I had to say on the topic and decided to quit eating meat. He still eats fish occasionally, but that's it. My mother is a vegetarian, and my father a meat-eater, so it can be done either way.

    Here's a link to a savingadvice thread about vegetarianism from a few years ago. There are lots of us here, and many more have joined! Welcome!

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      #3
      Re: Vegetarian

      my only suggestion is that you take the choice to go vegan very seriously and take considerable care in planning your meals if you do so. i say this because i have had vegan friends who liked the idea of being vegan but didn't put in the work needed to ensure they got complete nutrition, and their health suffered as a result.

      it is of course possible to be vegan and be perfectly healthy, but one must pay close attention to getting the correct amounts of the correct foods moreso than with other diets.

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        #4
        Re: Vegetarian

        I was a vegetarian for ~ 10 years, but fell off the wagon in summer 2005 when I spent three months in Europe. I wanted to experience the culture at its fullest and decided that sticking to a vegetarian diet wasn’t as important (to me) as it once was. Once I returned to the US, I decided to shed my vegetarian title. I’d say I still consume a 95% vegetarian diet, but will eat meat if it comes my way and the fancy strikes. For now, this approach is working very well for me. I also moonlight as a personal chef so I cook meat for my client and taste it as needed. Vegetarian cooking is undoubtedly cheaper, especially if you only eat lean cuts of meat (I only buy lean meats for my personal chef client. After years of not buying meat am shocked at how quickly it adds up). Have you seen the blog my “Frugal Veggie Mama”? The author is a vegan, frugal minded and health conscious. Check it out at: http://frugalveggiemama.blogspot.com/

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          #5
          Re: Vegetarian

          I have been mostly vegetarian for about seven years now. I am not strict about it but my reasons are similar to yours in that animal treatment and environment are my main concerns. I rarely purchase meat (maybe 10 times in 7 years), but if something is going to end up thrown away/wasted I tend to be more liberal about eating it. I think that most people don't remain vegan or vegetarian because it can be much more difficult to get GOOD meals where ever you go. If you are cooking everything all the time for yourself you are fine, but everyone that I know goes out to eat and travels and this is when I hear of most people switching diets. I have found that by not keeping to any strict guidelines I have been able to stay vegetarian (mostly) with little trouble and that suites me just fine.

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            #6
            Re: Vegetarian

            I have been a vegetarian for 20+ years. I am what is classified as a lacto-ovo vegetarian, meaning that I eat dairy products. You are correct in saying that its not a good idea to replace meat with chocolate (one of my big downfalls). Just like with non-vegetarians, with vegetarians you have a whole range of people from healthy to not so healthy. The one thing I would suggest is to make sure you take a good multi-vitamin to make up for anything lacking in your diet.

            If you want to go with prepared food products Morningstar, Boca, Quorn, Amy's, Worthington, Loma Linda, etc. are all vege food producers. I think Quorn and Amy is actually vegan, the others are mainly lacto-ovo vegetarian. The one thing you have to watch out for is the sodium content though. They also can get pretty expensive - but there are coupons that come out once in a while (for Morningstar at least) and if you match it with a sale - good deals can be found.

            The least expensive and probably more healthy way is of course to use tofu and beans and cook from scratch.

            It is possible to find vegetarian dishes when eating out. I'm not so sure about vegan dishes, but at least where I live (TX) I usually don't have a problem coming up with something from the menu. The biggest problem I have is at work when we have our "potlucks". The way I get around that is by bringing my own dish for protein, and then eating whatever veggies the others bring.

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              #7
              Re: Vegetarian

              Originally posted by FrugalTexan75
              I have been a vegetarian for 20+ years. I am what is classified as a lacto-ovo vegetarian, meaning that I eat dairy products.
              I'm not vegetarian but I have to agree that morningstar products are very good, but expensive. I like pretty much everything they have, same with boca, the exception being the bacon.

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                #8
                Re: Vegetarian

                I have to agree w/ you on Boca's bacon :vomit-smiley-001:

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                  #9
                  Re: Vegetarian

                  I didn't know Boca made bacon. I've only had the Morningstar Stripples (bacon). I eat two of them pretty much every weekday as part of my breakfast.

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                    #10
                    Re: Vegetarian

                    Originally posted by nanamom
                    I was wondering if anyone out there is a vegetarian. I am becoming one or maybe I have become one and am planning on going to vegan if I can figure out what to eat.
                    Feel free to PM me anytime if you need help. I have been ovo-lacto veg for 11 years, ever since I was in high school.

                    The nice thing about being vegetarian is that you're a cheap date! Eating out is usually much less expensive and I seldom have any issues finding things to eat.

                    And, yes, these are fundamental truths of vegetarianism:
                    - Meatless products are mostly okay, but
                    - Vegetarian bacon is gross.

                    I like Morningstar grilled "chicken" strips sometimes, and also the fake crumbled ground beef, if I am making certain recipes. I don't eat too much mock meat anymore though - usually just if I am feeling the need for nostalgic comfort foods (like shepherd's pie) or want to make a particular receipe.

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                      #11
                      Re: Vegetarian

                      I have been vegetarian for nearly five years, it was the best decision I ever made - I did it for the moral reasons too, and I don't think I could ever go back. I love cooking and coming up with new ideas for meals, but I rarely use any of the stereotypical "veggie" foods like tofu or soya - I get by just fine with plenty of fresh fruit, potatoes, rice and pasta. It certainly is about a hundred times cheaper to go vegetarian - when I lived with my dad I was spending 1/3 of what he spent, and he doesn't even eat that much meat.

                      Good luck with the switchover - there's loads of good sites around for encouragement and facts etc about vegetarianism - just do a google search and there's bucket loads.

                      One thing I would say though, as mentioned earlier, is that it is a lot harder to go vegan than you'd think, and requires lots of planning. I was vegan for a year but got very ill as I hadn't really taken enough care of what I was putting into my body - counter to popular belief, it's not a lack of protein (most people actually have too much in their diets) but I was suffering from a lack of iron. I am trying to go vegan again this year, but I'm going to plan it a lot better. Also I'm finding that it's helped by going one step at a time - I am no longer using eggs, milk or cheese in my own recipes, or eating them on their own, but I have not yet cut them out of ready made things ie readymeals, cakes, meals out etc.

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                        #12
                        Re: Vegetarian

                        If you need a veg cookbook, check out Nikki & David Goldbeck's
                        " American Wholefoods Cuisine". There are some great recipes in their book.
                        It was published in 1983. You can probably find a used copy at Amazon or someplace else that sells used books.

                        Bonnie

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                          #13
                          Re: Vegetarian

                          Being a vegetarian is a great savings strategy and it's also good for the earth and your health. However, you need to make sure you are eating the proper combination of foods (esp. if you go vegan).

                          I'm no longer a vegetarian but I treat meat like a seasoning or a component rather than the main event now.

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                            #14
                            Re: Vegetarian

                            I think that you can a little at a time eliminate a lot of meat by eating smaller portions as the Asian people do. You can start by eating beef only 1 time a week, maybe fish 2 times, and chicken 3 times and maybe a day without any meat.

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                              #15
                              Re: Vegetarian

                              I have been vegetarian on and off for years now. Last winter I tried following a raw diet. I must say it was very strict, but also I felt great. I have found through trying many different food diets/lifestyles, that being vegetarian works very well for me. I know that by eliminating my food allergies I feel much healthier too.
                              I think that you can do it if you really want to. Just my two cents...Good luck!

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