I come from a country – Colombia – where eating meat is extremely popular and widely accepted. Not having any type of meat for lunch or dinner is a both a sign of poverty and lack of proper nutrition. However, in my quest to better my digestion and heal my body, I tried many different nutritional approaches that let me experience, first hand, what worked for my body and what didn’t. Not eating meat is one of those things I think helped the most with feeling healthier. So, I wanna share with you the 4 reasons why I don’t eat meat.
But, before going into detail, I must say I don’t believe in food fanaticism. I believe in eating healthy and that obviously means plant-based foods that are naturally low in saturated fats, processed sugar, and full of Prana or Life force.
However, as much as I love these divine foods, I also know that there are those special and very rare occasions where I have eaten meat, particularly fish and seafood. If my mom, who lives in Colombia cooks for my birthday a special dish that contains shrimp, for example, I know I won’t say no.
Travelling, is also a big exception for me. I love to explore a new country with all my senses, so of course, food is a big part of understanding a culture in all its dimensions. In Japan, last summer, I tried different kinds of sushi and sashimi. In Spain I enjoyed eating the nutritious paella Valenciana. To me, it creates a healthy balance in my mind and body knowing I am not really restricting myself of anything.
I know my decisions come from a place of self-love and self-care. Still, on a regular basis my diet is vegetarian. I could attempt to say I am vegan but, I include in my daily diet ghee and honey and both products come from animal sources.
FROM HIGH PROTEIN TO VEGETARIAN
A long time ago, I met a vegetarian guy who looked extremely pale and thin. I remember thinking that not eating meat couldn’t possibly be regarded as healthy if you end up looking like you were sick. And so, in my first attempts to eat better, I went for a high protein diet. I used to eat 6 meals a day and all of them contained some sort of animal protein: egg whites, red meat, chicken, fish, turkey, whey or casein protein powder, or even cottage cheese. Long story short: my liver couldn’t keep up with the pace and got really sick.
That’s when I gave meat a second thought and started my journey into becoming mostly vegetarian. Make no mistake. It was not a quick change. It took me some time to get used to plant-based dishes. However, the results have been so rewarding! Better digestion, better sleep, clear skin, and a feeling of lightness and rejuvenation. Aren’t these some things you would like for yourself? If you would, then read the 4 reasons why I don’t eat meat.
IT IS DIFFICULT TO DIGEST
You know, it’s not secret that meat takes a long time to digest! It takes way longer than legumes, grains, and vegetables to get fully digested. Meat is heavy and promotes the production of ama which is, according to Ayurveda, the undigested food mass that causes disease. Just try not eating meat for a week and see how better your digestion gets. And check your tongue! When you are loaded with toxins you will wake up with a thick coat of ama on it which can be attributed to eating meat.
INCREASES YOUR RISK OF HEART DISEASE
Meat has high homocystine levels which is linked to an increase risk in heart and renal disease. Homocystine is an amino-acid you get from animal meat which also irritates the lining of arteries and encourages clogs to form. No bueno.
MAKES YOU LOSE CALCIUM
Meat is a source of excessive phosphorous which causes a loss of calcium by hindering the body’s absorption of this vital mineral. This alone has several negative consequences like muscle spams, numbness, depression, hallucinations, weak and brittle nails, muscle cramps, and fracturing of the bones.
Eating meat can make you body very acidic and that increases the chances of getting osteoporosis. By following mostly a plant-based diet you can maintain a constant PH in your body and reverse any of these negative effects.
AYURVEDA AND MEAT
I am an Ayurvedic Lifestyle Consultant and the nutrition advice I provide to my clients is based on Ayurvedic principles. That’s why I wanted to mention what Ayurveda thinks of meat. According to the ancestral healing science, meat breeds toxins, feeds infections, fevers, and tumors.
It also has a dulling effect in the mind due to its tamasic nature which decreases your love and compassion, specially if it comes from exploited animals. Ayurveda also believes that meat increases bad karma, specially when meat comes from animals not humanely treated. It is kind of getting within your body all the suffering energy of the animal.
This is why I avoid eating meat as much as possible. I know how it makes me feel and look and so, reducing or eliminating its consumptions has allowed me to experience true health.
These are the principles I follow when it comes to this important nutritional topic:
- I don’t eat any dairy products other than ghee because I know I break out horribly when I have them.
- I never buy any kind on meat when grocery shopping. And not having it at home, also makes the habit of eating plant-based foods more consistent.
- When eating out, 99% of the time I go for plant-based options like Tofu, Tempeh, Seitan, Hummus, Falafel, and other legumes and grains. At the beginning it was purely a matter of being healthier. Now, I have grown so fond of these delicious tastes that I do it because I love it and just feels natural.
- If I eat meat – again, very very rarely – I would first choose it from organic sources and compensate the fact with a very light, easily digested diet for at least a week or so to help my digestion and tissues recover.
You don’t have to ditch meat this second. But, you can start reducing the amounts you eat. You could also make sure it comes from animals well treated so you can avoid pesticides, insecticides, and pollutants
I encourage you to give the plant-based nutrition option a try. You don’t have to go to the extreme of all or nothing, but increasing the consumption of these amazing foods coming straight from mother earth, will make such a difference in your body functioning.
Ps. Your gym gains won’t go away! I have kept my muscles intact with a plant-based, nutrient rich diet that is both balanced and suitable for my body constitution. If you wanna learn more, shoot me an email! 🙂