About five years ago I adopted a meat with no feet diet. For those of you who don’t know what that is…I’m a pescatarian. I haven’t eaten meat in five years.
As a special thank you, I decided to cook a big dinner for my nonprofit organizations board of directors. They were a supportive, hard working bunch. I wanted to do something special for them.
Obsessed with meats cleanliness, I flipped the hens body upside down by the legs to rinse the inside. Turn it back around and behold, the hens neck that I had not noticed before. Me being the melodramatic person I am, dropped (ok more like threw) the hen explaining (to Mel- a board member turned friend who I was on the phone with at the time) how shocked I was to find the neck that I hadn’t noticed before. At this point I’m gagging. Feeling sick to my stomach. The same way I did when I thought about the preparation process of getting cooked meat in my presence. I vowed then I would never eat meat again.
Needless to say, at the board dinner later that evening, I did not touch any of it. I only ate sides. Having to relive the story over dinner, everyone poked and joked claiming it was just a phase. That was in early 2010. I’ve been loyal to my meat free desire and commitment ever since.
So here’s the truth about my pescatarian experience:
It’s fun because for me it’s a choice. Much like my desire to embrace my ethnic hair in its natural state. I love seafood and there’s a huge variety of it out there. I’m still trying and learning about.
My immune system. It is strong. Over the past almost eight years I’ve been sick (with a common cold) maybe twice. Two times in almost eight years!? I’ll take it.
I feel good. Like all of the time.
It’s intrigued me to try some vegan alternatives to supplement the need for protein. Seitan is a protein that tastes like chicken. It’s a little shocking how much it tastes like it, but is so so good. Protein Italian sausages are amazing too. Again, shock factor whenever I eat it but reminds me so much of meat.
Supportive family and friends. As mentioned, my family is massive. Family gatherings involves a lot of food. Much of which is genuinely made with pescatarian love.
Deeper love for and relationship with food. Much of this credit is courtesy of my little lady developing an intolerance to high fructose corn syrup when she was four. Her nutritionist told me to read labels while grocery shopping and omit foods with it. What she hadn’t advised me of was the fact that high fructose corn syrup is literally in everything processed. Which meant I’d have to cook most of my foods from scratch. Once I got over the shock, I took to the food network channel and recipes for research. It was and still is a fun journey.
Sharing this love with others. Eventually I fell in love with cooking and began to host dinner parties featuring a tasty pescatarian spread. Eventually I’d carry this into my Brown Skin Women blogs youth programs offering quarterly youth summits and annual weekend retreat exploring all things natural living. Food being one of the highlights.
I know others who have tried pescatarianism for health reasons or curiosity even. With the right resources, you can set yourself up for success.