Monday, February 15, 2010

Meatless February

i wish i could say it’s been easy, but the truth is i’ve been fantasizing about all manner of meat since day one. the cravings have been pretty steady, waning only slightly in the past few days as i’ve renewed my dedication to make it to the end of the month with no cheating and, perhaps, even extend it into march. the maddening, constant hunger of the first week has also finally passed, leaving my appetite more or less normal.

Mo and i decided to go meatless for the month partly because of my pops’ heart condition, but moreso to give our bodies a much-needed cleanse. i’ve been a long-standing subscriber to the theory that it’s only a snack unless there is a dead animal on my plate, in which case it becomes a meal. but after reading Michael Pollan’s The Omnivore’s Dilemma (highly recommend!), it’s hard for me not to be sympathetic to porky’s plight.

i’m trying to be better. i’m trying to live and eat more ethically, but i’m having trouble escaping an undeniable fact of my life: I LOVE MEAT. there, i said it. i love meat. it may be murder, but it’s tasty murder, and i can’t stop thinking about how amazing chewing on a slaughtered animal would be right about now. and not the bland or lean stuff, like chicken breasts or turkey burgers, which i have not once fantasized about, but the hard stuff, the good stuff, like a prime steak cooked medium rare, sausages stuffed with mouth-watering swine, bacon wrapped around everything. the thought of it drives me wild enough to eat my own arm!

sorry for the digression. one bright side of a meatless month is that i have lost a bit of weight. nothing drastic as it’s only been two weeks, but it’s enough to make my clothes looser and face slimmer. i don’t own a scale, so i’m not sure about the actual amount. another benefit is that i don’t fall into food comas anymore, even after a big meal. my energy levels are mostly high and my digestion is easy.

and the meals have been pretty good. it’s not just steamed veggies and white rice for dinner every night. we’ve made some delicious veggie lasagna, falafel from scratch, potato tacos, meatless pizzas, bean soups galore. plus, we’ve been eating fish a couple times a week so there is plenty of yummy tummy going on. admittedly, it hasn’t been enough to quell my cravings for the flesh, but i don’t feel bored with the food.

if anything, i hope this meatless month will result in fewer meat-centric meals when i return to meat-eating in the future. and i’ll return, oh yes i will, just counting down the days now. this little experiment has taught me that i’m not cut out for vegetarianism, or even pescetarianism, which i had been semi-seriously considering, but in the spirit of wanting a healthy heart and a long life, eating less meat seems like a good place to start.

now if you’ll excuse me, i have to go wash the steak sauce off my arm.

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