Posted by: suzan | February 6, 2014

Livin’ the Vegetarian Life – My Eco Eats Challenge

VEGGIE GARDEN

When I was around nine or ten years old I witnessed a cruel injustice to a stray dog close to my home. I saved him from a heartless dog catcher, took the dog home to give him some water and food, and helped him find a new home. But it was staring into those dark, murky depths of his big, black eyes that a turning point happened for me. Watching the cruelty of the animal being beaten and dragged to the dog truck had somehow given me a distaste for animal meat from then on. When I went back inside the house to tell my mom what had happened, she looked at me with a strange smile and then aptly dumped the hot dog she was going to serve me for lunch.

I have to be grateful for such an understanding mom. She has always been a kindhearted and sweet person and when she saw unabashed tears streaming down my face that day, she knew she had to make a decision – allow a young girl to make a compassionate decision that could forever change her life, or laugh it off as some silly girlhood whim.

There are many reasons why someone would become a vegetarian or a vegan. But for a child to become one, the choice can be magnanimous. Children do not inherently know if they should or should not eat meat. They eat whatever their parents give them; meat eaters will feed their children meat, vegetarians will feed their children non-meat. It’s pretty simple, but choosing to become a vegetarian is not an easy path and there can be many obstacles in the way once you decide to become one.

But do you think kids should automatically become vegetarians? That’s a tricky question and it depends solely on the household and how they view food as a whole and whether being a vegetarian is a health choice or a humanitarian one. My nephew chose to become a vegetarian when he was around seven years old. Yes, that’s pretty young but he always had a compassionate nature and he had told his parents that he didn’t want to harm animals so the natural path he took would evidently involve becoming a vegetarian. His parents suffice to say also became vegetarians soon after, wanting to follow the benevolent endeavors of their son.

I became a vegetarian when it wasn’t a “trend”, when people looked at me like I was crazy or from another planet. Eating an all plant-based diet wasn’t very hip or cool but little did people know that revolutionary changes in how Americans eat would later become the new standard. There are more and more vegetarian and vegan restaurants popping up, food companies solely devote their entire line to vegetarians, and even magazines are written for those who are non-meat eaters. Vegetarians were no longer looked at funny and mainstream restaurants even dedicated a section on their menus for “vegetarians”.

There are no right or wrong reasons on whether you should become a vegetarian. It’s a personal choice and no one should bully you into it or laugh at you should you choose to become one. It may be a health choice, a reason to try something new, or simply the thought of eating animals is gruesome. Whatever the reasons, it never hurts to try it. There are many companies out there dedicated in helping you become a vegetarian and in staying one. And if you need one simple reason – consider that it’s a lot less expensive to become a vegetarian than it is to put meat on your table every day. You can even grow your own organic garden so you know what you’re eating. And in the long run, it’ll make you a bit healthier too.

If you’re looking for ways to live a greener life, then try the NBC Green is Universal Eco Eats Challenge which runs from September 29 through October 17. There are many actions to try whether you’re just starting out or have been doing this for a long time. Actions include: Eat a vegetarian meal – http://bit.ly/ZYqpTg, Buy organic eggs – http://bit.ly/1rqiU1F, Fill up your reusable water bottle – http://bit.ly/1CtLGSI, an many many more actions that are fun and educational.  NBC Green is Universal’s One Small Act website is also hosting a sweepstakes. Read below for more info:

From September 2- October 17, NBC’s Green is Universal One Small Act is also hosting a sweepstakes when you join the “Eco Eats” challenge . To join, visit their free green-living tool, One Small Act. Everyone who signs-up and tackles at least one action by October 17th will be entered to win one of five 6-month subscriptions to NatureBox. No Purchase Necessary. Must be US resident and 18+. Read official rules here.

Disclaimer: In exchange for participating in the challenge and writing this post, I was given a gift package from Green is Universal. All opinions here are still my own.

Disclaimer: The product(s)were sent to the author for review by the manufacturer/PR. All reviews on “Happymomblogger” remain unbiased and unpaid and are the sole decision of the author. The opinions of these product(s) were not influenced in any way, shape, or form. As always, please read the ingredients carefully when trying new products.

Please read the labels and ingredients carefully and follow all manufacturer’s instructions (if any). The products selected for the giveaway were generously donated by the companies/PR to help readers learn more about their products. The winner’s choice in using/consuming these products are entirely up to the winner and will not hold the author and her family liable nor the companies/PR liable. These products are made with non-toxic ingredients but always be safe with what you use and consume.

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Responses

  1. I went vegetarian around age 7 as well, like your nephew. I was at the deli and something just clicked – I didn’t want to eat meat any more. Now in my 30’s and as a parent, I am raising my girls vegetarian. To me it has never been a big deal, or ‘hurdle’, just a way of life, and I hope my girls continue to be vegetarian throughout their lives. The reality is that it isn’t just about not wanting to eat animals; the sustainability of the planet has really become such a pressing issue, among so many other issues (at least for us). I feel like it is so easy to be a vegetarian now, with all the food choices available!

    • I agree with you! Not just for the health or ethical reasons but producing meat uses up gas emissions that further causes damage to our precious planet. So many positive reasons to become vegetarian these days.


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