What is a Flexitarian?

Last week, I posted an article on What is a Vegan?  Because I admitted that I was really not a vegan any longer, this was a difficult post to write.

So today, I am going to explain that I am a Flexitarian and why ….What is a Flexitarian?

First, what is a flexitarian?  According to Wikipedia:

A semi-vegetarian or flexitarian diet is one that is plant-based with the occasional inclusion of meat products. In 2003, the American Dialect Society voted flexitarian as the year’s most useful word and defined it as “a vegetarian who occasionally eats meat”.  In 2012, the term was listed for the first time in the mainstream Merriam-Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary.

Vegetarianism is the practice of abstaining from the consumption of meat. Common reasons for adopting a flexitarian diet may be health, environment or reduction of resource consumption, which are also arguments in favor of adopting a fully vegetarian diet. While flexitarians may view the flexitarian diet as occasional indulgences, vegetarians may strongly resent the term and view it as cheating or as a moral lapse. Other than flexitarian diets that may include any type of meat, semi-vegetarianism includes:

  • Pollotarians: They eat chicken or other poultry, but not meat from mammals, often for environmental, health or food justice reasons.
  • Pescetarians: They eat fish or other seafood, but not poultry or meat from mammals. The macrobiotic diet is plant-based, and may or may not include the occasional addition of fish or other seafood.
  • Pollo-pescetarians: They eat fish and poultry, but not meat from mammals.

So yes, I eat meat occasionally.

My story is rather interesting as I grew up in a ‘meat and potatoes’ family (or a meat and macaroni family!) and never really enjoyed eating much.  Once I got out on my own in college, I ate lots of vegetable dishes — often without meat at all!

Salad or soups/stews have always been one of my favorite meals.  But it never occurred to me that my body needed more veggies!  When I got sick from the overload of gluten, my naturopathic, who diagnosed me, was a vegan.  He and his wife spent time helping me adapted a vegan — or nearly vegan diet!  I felt like I had found home!!

So why did I switch to a Flexitarian diet?  After being vegan for a few years, I went back to be retested.  My naturopathic doctor discovered my high uric acid level and asked me again if I really had given up red meat!!  After some research, I discovered that the extra uric acid was, mostly likely, coming from the extra beans I was eating.

So once again, for health reasons, I changed my diet again.  I now eat poultry a few times a week, have an occasional fish or pork dish — and almost never eat beef.

There you have it!

 

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