From The Blog

Tips For Adulthood: Five Reasons To Become A Vegetarian (By a Non-Vegetarian)

Every Wednesday I offer tips for adulthood. This week’s post was inspired by an article in the Washington Post that caught my eye. It noted...

Every Wednesday I offer tips for adulthood.

This week’s post was inspired by an article in the Washington Post that caught my eye. It noted that the American Dietetic Association has recently adjusted its guidelines to state that vegetarian diets can be healthy for children as well as adults.

Personally, I love meat. Bacon…steak…lamb chops. Bring it on. Plus, I’ve got a kid who’s allergic to most fish and nuts. So that pretty much ensures that we’ll continue to eat meat for some time as a family. Still, the more I learn about vegetarianism (and the more films I see about the meat-processing industry – see below) the more I call my own carnivore tendencies into question.

So in the grand spirit of “Do as I say, not as I do,” here are five reasons you should become a vegetarian:

1. Slaughtering animals is vile. Don’t believe me? Go see Fast Food Nation. That should safely do it for cows. Still don’t believe me? Go see the new documentary, Food, Inc. There goes chicken!

2. Tofu is surprisingly OK. Let’s face it, tofu is gross. It looks weird, feels weird and tastes weird. But if you slather it with enough sauce it’s just fine. And very, very good for you.

3. Vegetarians have less cancer. Or so this new study claims.

4. Vegetarians aren’t all freak shows. The single best defense of vegetarianism I’ve ever read was by Taylor Clark in Slate Magazine about a year ago. And he doesn’t like tofu either!

5. Vegetarians may have better Sex. The jury’s still out on this one but hey, why not try it and see?


If you’re interested, have a look at my piece on universal health care in yesterday’s Politics Daily entitled “Ten Things You Might Not Know About Socialized Medicine.”

Image: An Experiment in Vegetarianism by Supernalorealm via Flickr under a Creative Commons License.

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  1. steven germain July 16, 2009 at 12:52 am #

    If you think slaughtering animals is vile, read Consider The Lobster by David Foster Wallace – you will soon extend to shell fish.

  2. Veronica July 16, 2009 at 1:11 am #

    You’ll feel better if you read Michael Pollan’s essay: An Animal’s Place (New York Times Magazine 11/10/02). The problem is unchecked capitolism, the answer is not vegetarianism, but more respectful and humane treatment of the animals raised for food.

    • delialloyd July 16, 2009 at 9:52 pm #

      will do.

      • delialloyd July 16, 2009 at 9:53 pm #

        I should also confess that right after posting that piece, I went out and ate pork.

  3. Patricia July 16, 2009 at 4:08 am #

    I just wrote a review of Dr. Kessler’s book (a pediatrician) about the American Food Industries goals about food addiction and manipulation. Another powerful resource to consider.

    I am mostly vegetarian but I do eat organic chicken in small portions because I have experienced cancer so many times in my life and now too I am overweight…I just feel better and lower my blood pressure and blood sugar levels…I think diabetes is an epidemic here in the US

    Good post and interesting discussion. thanks

  4. Jenny July 17, 2009 at 1:59 pm #

    Mostly a good post, Delia, if I may say so.

    If you eat fish, you aren’t a vegetarian, you’re a pescatarian.

    It’s not just the slaughter of animals that is cruel, horrifying and vile, it’s factory farming of animals – unspeakable cruelty and deprivation. Check out an Australian not for profit advocating the end of cruelty to animals. You can see the site without reading nasty stuff unless you want to – ie. behind links.

    Veronica: I don’t think there’s a nice way to slaughter another living being. It’s still slaughter. But if you must eat meat, learn how to kill it yourself. Eat free range – provided it’s real not bogus free range. At least there’s some hope the animal has lived with a semblance of a quality of life. But they are slaughtered the same as factory farmed animals. The problem is we’re too distant from how animals are born, raised, and killed. It’s so clean when it’s wrapped in plastic and on a nice black plastic tray under red lights, we can forget that the fillet of whatever used to be on the side of something that had a heart.

    I became vegetarian 11 months ago. Stopped eating fish four months ago. Can’t eat flesh any more. One of the best decisions I’ve ever made. My taste buds have changed – I love mushrooms now, eat more vegetables, and am happy to be living in accordance with my values.

    Think about it, folks.

  5. Jenny July 17, 2009 at 2:01 pm #

    Oops, I mean I became pescatarian 11 months ago. Slap to me!

  6. oilandgarlic February 16, 2010 at 10:10 pm #

    As a Chinese-American, I must chime in that tofu is not gross. It’s very good in Chinese cuisine. It’s just bad when you turn it into tofu-turkey or tofu hotdog. I admit that I haven’t encountered any good Western uses for tofu but it’s not vile if you know how to cook it.

    • delialloyd February 17, 2010 at 6:43 am #

      fair enough. and hope I didn’t offend. i eat it all the time, mind you. i just hate the texture!


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