Friday, October 26, 2007

Melissa and I have been pondering this issue lately... and wondering whether we should adopt it ourselves. What do you think?


Amy said...

I say, I like and need protein and don't want to use soy products to get it. I like meat. No tofurkey at Thanksgiving for me.

ben said...

i'm sure your not aware of this but virginia and i have been vegetarians for over a year now. so this is a subject that i've done quite alot of pondering over the last year or so. i could go on and on at this point but i'll do my best to keep it brief. firstly, having lived with me you know how i ate. and that being big i need alot of food and therefore protein to exist. protein is not an issue as many people, and the commenter above noted. it definitely takes some adjustments and in the beginning you have to be very intentional about what you are taking in so as to have a balanced diet. just like anything else. i felt no ill effects during our transition away from meat and have not felt nor experienced any under-nourishment as a result of going meat-free. it was true that for hundreds of years we needed to eat meat to have a well balanced diet. at this point we absolutely do not. and so given the choice that we now enjoy, and the benefits of those choices there is no reason not to move away from a meat based diet. there are MANY reasons to take up a vegetarian diet. i have not run into one that didn't make sense so far. we started because of some dietary issues my wife was having, but as we researched all that went into the meat that makes it to our table it added a whole new level of depth to our choice. the argument i hear alot especially from christians is that god gave us animals to use, and one of those uses is specified as food. which biblically is true. i do think however, especially in view of our current agricultural system that the command to be good stewards of our resources definitely needs to be taken into account in this case. those with even a limited understanding of our food industry understand that our current processes are very very wasteful as well as harmful to our environment. also, if our body is indeed our temple the health considerations of a vegetarian lifestyle cannot be understated. there are several forms of cancer that vegetarians for the most part just don't fall victim to. i feel myself getting all worked up into a lather now so i'm going to stop. if you want any more info or just want to talk about it i'd be happy to chat some more. i promise i don't get this worked up about it all the time it's just great to hear people are looking at this as a viable option and since it has been such a great life change for us on so many levels i just get carried away sometimes in sharing that with others. i'm glad you guys are at least considering the possibility. i wish more people would.

cherice said...

This is one of the major reasons Joel & I are vegetarians. (Well, Joel's a pescetarian because he eats seafood although he tries to steer clear of seafood that's over-fished.) Another good reason to be a vegetarian is the inhumane way animals in this country are treated while they're alive and when they're about to be slaughtered. You could do some research on that, too--it's not a pretty picture. I read an article in the NY Times a few months back about how pigs, which are at least as intelligent as the smartest dogs, are kept in cages only a couple inches longer and wider than themselves, and they stand there in their own excrement for months until they're slaughtered. Also, a lot of cows are lined up in a cattle chute, let in one at a time, cut in half while still alive (so their blood will drain out), and the other cows can hear and smell what's going on and start freaking out while waiting in line. So those are a few more good reasons to add to your list...

Although I don't think it's inherently wrong to kill animals when we need food, I think we should respect animals as part of God's creation, and respect other people by not taking up so many resources to grow our unnecessary meat so that others don't have enough to eat.

I've never had a problem switching diets, but Joel craves meat now and then...but we don't have a problem getting enough protein usually.

Luke Ankeny said...

Interesting Michael. We are doing some research and discussing of our own about diet...mainly to help Samuel, but we know we would all benefit from doing more than just organic. We'll pass on anything we do the same!

Michael said...

Amy- Thanks for the comment. No tofurkey at Thanksgiving for me either. I'd rather just eat green bean casserole and orange jello all day.

Ben- Thanks for the (long) response. I'm glad you stopped where you did so that none of your lather spilled onto your computer and ruined it.

You bring up many good points and things that I both have and haven't thought about. Thanks for the spiritual implications as well (stewardship of bodies and earth). Let's keep discussing this!

Cherice- Thanks for another perspective. I have (in the past) look at the treatment of animals and the state of the meat itself but not felt compelled to make a dietary choice from it. But now that this issue of economics and poverty reduction has come into play I now see that aspect (treatment of animals) as an enforcing argument for me.

Heidi- I can't imagine Luke not eating meat. (Kidding!) Thanks for the comment though. As I have shared this with people I have gotten a similar response to yours. Many people are looking into it and feel that it would be a smart move for them. So yes, let's compare notes.

Anonymous said...

Being raised on the farm, Uncle Kenny & I enjoy a good steak, hamb. etc. We do love our vegetables & fruit and because of the heart/cancer issues in both sides of the family we have tried to watch the intake of red meat in our diet, mostly eating fish & chicken. About a couple of years ago we found out some information about grass finished (all natural) beef animals that surprised us. We found out that eating beef is not the problem, it's what they are feeding the beef animals that's the problem, grain etc. For more information on this subject go to We now buy grass finished beef. It's amazing how good it is and we still eat it once a week. It's a little more expensive that what you get in the store.

We all need to be aware too that eating vegatables and fruit from the stores isn't all that great unless you go organic or raise your own. So many of the veg/fruit have been sprayed with chemicals that can't be good for us. They also pick the vegetables/fruit early before they are ripe to insure they will travel well. In the process they have lost alot of their nutrients. I hate to buy the tomato's in the stores after eating fresh ones from Uncle Dennis's garden. :)

So all this to say, there is a balance to everything we do and eat.

Aunt Devo