When I was 17 years old, I started on a project to become a vegetarian. There weren’t many vegetarians back then – at least I didn’t know of many – so I had to build a plan on my own. I decided to give up one type of meat at a time, starting with pork. Now more than 30 years later, I still don’t eat pork but I’ve yet to give up the next meat, unless you count bear, raccoon, and possum. I’m not sure what prompted me to think about becoming a vegetarian. I imagine it came from reading about some runner who was a vegetarian because I considered myself a pretty good runner at the time. Maybe it was because I’d read how eating less red meat would help me live longer.
Well, that’s not so true!
In a recent European study, researchers found that people who eat red meat moderately actually live longer than those who abstain. Similar conclusions have been found in other studies. As the linked article points out, there are too many confounding factors to draw any stark conclusions. But the data isn’t as conclusive as the media would have us all believe.
So I’ll continue to sit at step one in my transformation to vegetarianism. And I’ll add to the list of meats I don’t eat things like dog, cat, horse, people, and mice. If pressed, I might even give up the possibility of squirrels and frogs. I doubt my plan will get around to cows, or even baby sheep, but one never knows.