CARDIOLOGY, PRIMARY CARE AND NUTRITION

Blogpost: What to do with the Vegan Police?

Wonder if we kept it a secret. We didn’t offer any explanation or justification at all. We just ate our fruits, vegetables, and whole grains. No thank you to oil, salt or sugar. What? Are you vegetarian? No, this is just what I like. If that were the end of the conversation, would there be a need to police your choices? We have all had the vegan police inform us about our choices. There is nothing on the menu you can eat. You cannot have blank on the buffet because it has dairy. What is wrong with fish anyway?

Have you heard those statements? Who are your friends really looking out for? You don’t hear people calling someone out on a keto diet eating ice cream because they are eating “normal”. The reality is that eating your fruits and vegetables, like your mother said to do, makes people uncomfortable with their own decisions. Come on, live a little. How bad could just a little bit of meat be? You have to die of something. It is too hard to eat this way, and besides, your missing things.

Even smokers don’t try to persuade others to smoke. The World Health Organization says 5 cigarettes cause cardiovascular disease and cancer, so it is ok to have one or two. Join me. That does not occur. Smokers know they are addicted, and it is a hard habit to break. It is a much easier problem to identify. Cigarettes are cigarettes for the most part. They are not red meat, eggs, dairy, oil, and salt all combined to make different items to select. The eggs are hidden in the cake. The sugar and oil are in the pie crust. Everybody eats those things. Your parents fed you those things and encouraged you to eat them.

Most people know that red meat is not good for you, but come on, now and then it is ok? The real problem is abundance. There is abundance of food and choices. We can eat a little of something bad for months on end without ever choosing the same thing. Social media is full of tasty recipes and opinions on studies supporting the Standard American Diet. Don’t ask, don’t tell. Do Cheez*its have cheese in them? How could Goldfish crackers or goldfish be unhealthy? That Alfredo sauce seemed so lite!

The proof is in the chia pudding. It is also in feeling good, having energy, maintaining a healthy lean weight, and not having lifestyle diseases. There are over 40,000 fruits and vegetables to choose when planning a meal. Let’s face it, we plant strong vegans can name and no what to do with more fruits and vegetables than most people have ever heard of. People have to want what you have in order to change. The answer to the vegan police is I am great!. I feel good, and have more energy than I ever have. I am sure what you are doing is working for you as well. If you ever want to give health a go, I am there for you. Be well my friend.


3 Comments
  1. Reply
    Nancy Brainard

    So true! Most of my friends eat the standard American diet and just say “I could never give up this or that. My husband would never go for eating this way.” A friend of mine who even took the WFPB course with me said in her email how she and her husband had grilled chicken on Memorial Day. Not sure why she tells me these things when she knows I surely did not have chicken anything. I wonder about that. She is the same friend who got angry when we went to Italy because I had requested vegan with the airlines and the touring company. I think it embarrassed her. Maybe made her feel guilty? Not sure. She has lost weight and joined the gym so I always praise her for that. Others always ask where do you get your protein. There is a plant eating group here on the glade but I no longer go because I am not sure what the goal is. Most eat the American diet but just bring a veggie dish to the pot lucks. The leaders admit they still eat some meat. and the Japanese lady loves her coconut oil. So, I was not going to get the support I had hoped for there. I just won’t go there. We have a tiny Farmers’ Market here and I was thrilled when a new young farmer from California brought GREENS! First time! I was thrilled and purchased his microgreens I got the sunflower seed sprouts and brought them home for my daily big, fat salad. Yummy. Added them to kale, red lettuce, and arugula. I will be a regular to this table!

  2. Reply
    Donna

    I really needed to think about this blogpost a bit before opening my mouth/thoughts. I must admit that I am a past Paleo athlete and at the time I thought that was being healthy, helping my performance and it was socially acceptable. Even the nutritionist at the major university I attended (many, many years ago) encouraged this diet/lifestyle.
    Now we know more about what we put in our bodies and we try to do better….but I must acknowledge that I was probably one of those Vegan Police not too long ago. I thought my way of eating was the “right” way to eat. I think as humans many of us tend to look around and judge/compare ourselves with others. We tend to see what we want to see and we try imitate it. If people are eating meat, dairy and oils and they look on the outside as being healthy and successful —why can’t I do that? As I get older and wiser I have learned that outside appearances are often very deceiving. You can’t see high cholesterol, high blood pressure, diabetes, osteopenia/osteoporosis , heart disease………but eventually everything catches up to us! It is difficult to change the way you eat when you don’t feel bad and most people around you are not encouraging your choices. The flip side is waiting until you are ill to change the way you live your life.
    Smoking is a choice, exercising is a choice and what we put in our mouth is a choice. I should probably be more of a Plant-based (SOS) Vegan Police to myself 🙂
    I am learning ( I am far from perfect) that each healthy choice I make is a small step in the right direction. I need to be proud of each step. Baby steps can lead to marathons and ultra races.
    Try not to lecture others, try not to judge. Instead, be a role model when you can. Remember, people really are watching you and trying to figure it out for themselves. When the Vegan Police show up in my life I try not to judge them and I smile to myself knowing that was me not too long ago.

    • Reply
      Dr. Dulaney

      Love the input, thank you. It is hard not to jump in and want to help someone and then get frustrated because they cannot see what is so clear to you.

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