As a 16 year old Asian British girl, you can imagine telling my family of meat lovers that I had decided to become vegetarian wasn’t easy. That’s why I’ve decided to write a few posts about my journey so far and how I’m managing the vegetarian life, just in case there’s anyone out there dealing with similar stuff.
Why did I become a vegetarian?
I’d like to start with saying that I didn’t change my diet due to ethical reasons. I’m a Muslim and therefore I only eat (or should I say ate) halal meat and food. I personally don’t mind the fact that some people choose to eat meat, it’s their decision and the treatment of the animals varies depending where you are, where the meat has come from and a bunch of other factors.
I’ve chosen not to eat meat because I genuinely dislike its texture and it’s never really been something I enjoy eating. It’s flavour doesn’t appeal to me at all and I’d much rather avoid eating it than forcing myself to.
Apparently there are also health benefits to it but those are an added bonus! Hopefully I’ll be able to explore the health side to vegetarianism more and share my findings here too.
When exactly did I become vegetarian?
The exact date was the 20th December 2016 which was exactly four months ago!
How did you tell your family?
This was my second attempt at becoming a vegetarian since I was point blank given a “No” when I tried two years ago. Thankfully, now I’m older and I suppose more responsible for my health my parents accepted my decision. My Dad was reluctant and it took a couple hours to convince him but four months later it’s all worked out.
I sat my parents down and had a good chat with them about my decision. I had explained my reasons behind my choice, told them where I’d get all of my protein from and that I didn’t expect anything to change.
The rest of my family are still slightly awkward about it but I’ve made it work, I know what I will or won’t eat and I never expect anyone to cook something entirely different for me. If I know that I’ll end up surrounded my chicken at my grans house then I’ll make sure to eat a huge breakfast. I don’t ever want things to become difficult just because I don’t want mince or whatever on my pizza (I never have it’s ew)
How’s it been?
At home everything has been perfect, I’ve always been able to make my own food if I want to which I’m so thankful for. The vegetarian jokes from my sister got a bit annoying but she’s just joking and my dad finds it funny to ask if I want a chicken burger.
The main hiccups have been when I go to relative’s houses because practically all of them love meat so it’s in most of the meals. I don’t have an issue just eating some salad or whatever else but it makes me feel terrible when someone tries to bring up the issue and ask, “What about Safa?”, simply because I don’t want a big deal to be made out of it all. I can get full up pretty easily and I’ve always known how to make a good meal when there’s not many options.
I’m currently in the process of trying to make that easier for everyone but I think I’ll take some time to figure out.
How do you eat out?
When I’m going out to eat then I always make sure to check the menu online beforehand. That way I can quickly find out if there are any good veggie options for myself. A majority of the time there will be something I can deal with but if not then I try to suggest another more veggie friendly restaurant if possible.
Another trick I use is to order a few side dishes and make up my own concoction. There was one place I went to where they could turn some of their dishes into vegetarian dishes if requested which I found pretty cool.
A couple weeks ago I ordered a starter at a restaurant for my meal because I was still stuffed from lunch and wanted something light. Turns out it was meant to be a sharing dish but it was still damn good considering it was chips with a few sauces and a coleslaw.
Lesson here is to read the entire menu for options and to ask if they can make you something without meat!
Thank you for reading, I really hope this was interesting to someone 😊 If anyone has more questions relating to vegetarianism and all then write them in the comments below, I’d be happy to answer them!
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