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Meat Free Week – Day 4

Enjoying a lovely morning porridge at the Watch House Cafe during #Meatfreeweek Day 4 has seriously made me think about sustainable food, myths about what we eat, how confused we are about what’s good and what’s bad and also who is to make that good or bad call when it comes to ourselves. Having porridge with cow milk for breakfast for example – is that good for me or bad for me? Because dairy is always a big, big problem it seems with so many contradicting articles from ‘experts’ one day it’s good, one day it’s a big no-no and another day it’s good but…

This is just an example about how too much information is doing more harm than it is doing good. In such cases it is best to know the facts and then listen to your body so you can do what is best for you. I would love to be a vegetarian, because I believe in the cause, I believe in my mind that it is a better option for me and to be honest I am not that big of a meat eater anyway. And so as I kept watching countless TED talks on health, food consumption and searching the internet for interesting articles on sustainable food and responsible consumption it is becoming increasingly clear that diet is perhaps the most personal of choices we can make. There is no one formula that suits us all, there is no magic wand that can sort out all our cumulative food problems at once. And that’s because we are all so very different. We have different lifestyles, we have different metabolism, nutritional needs, exercise routines (or lack of), health levels etc. That said, the one thing we can all agree is that we should be conscious of sustainable food and stay away from overeating which also is one of the causes for food waste.

But how about the other side of the coin. How do all those people who work the land and breed the cattle to supply meat, or go deep sea to fish how do they see this no meat trend? Surely, it is not as simple as let’s just all of us go ‘green’ and stop eating meat and fish because vegetables are more than enough.

‘We have grave concerns that the way this ‘eat less meat’ message has been conceived and articulated over many years – it has in fact been running in various forms for more than 30 years – and in its current manifestation, is actually part of the problem, not part of the solution – making agriculture less, not more, sustainable, making diets more unhealthy, food production less secure, whilst destroying wildlife and planetary ecosystems in the process.’ (Richard Young, Sustainable Food Trust )

Reading through their point of view you can’t help but start question both sides of the debate.

What if Everyone in the World Became a Vegetarian? 

I read an interesting article by L.V.Anderson on exactly that subject. Because let’s face it, these ongoing baby steps such as #meatfreemonday , #MeatFreeWeek , Vegan before 6 movement – they all have an end game of one day

all 7 billion of us woke up one day and realized that PETA was right all along. (L.V.Anderson: What if Everyone in the World Became a Vegetarian?)

But what if this day actually comes, then what? Would it be all that it is painted to be, and what would the effects on the economy and the population be?

How about the facts about eating meat, mostly red meat that is? Do we care to carefully weigh up the pros and cons or are we just easily letting ourselves believe the next ‘discovery’? I read an interesting article titled ‘8 Ridiculous Myths About Meat Consumption and Health’ by Kris Gunnars I have to say it is not easy to filter information through. A lot of articles are written in a heavy language, going into too much detail that the common user of health information (such as myself) will find really boring reading, let alone try to understand it. This article has a lot of detail, I found it quite informative but really what most people what to know is ‘Is it good for me or is it bad for me’ very few want to know why. And I have to sat that is a big part of the problem. So, we are back to education and what we feel and know is good for us on an individual level.

Though I wholeheartedly support #Meatfreeweek and I am consciously, steadily reducing my meat intake I know that being vegetarian is a long way away for me. Which is a pain in the arse as a lot of my friends are vegetarian by choice. Great! But I am yet to see an amazing veggie burger that can blow my mind and palette. Maybe that should be my next quest!

Until I share my veggie burger quest findings here are few video talks that may change the way you think about food and food consumption. I am off as I have made one of my fave snacks based on my dad’s recipe: A roasted mixed pepper and aubergine spread with parsley and lemon. Mmmm taste of home cooking

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Carolyn Steel: How food shapes our cities

Graham Hill: Why I’m a weekday vegetarian

Scientists Have Debunked These 5 Common Myths About Meat

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