Friday, May 11, 2012

My Veggie Diet

After watching Vegucated, I wanted to eat even more vegetables and less meat. The film did not show very graphic animal abuse but just enough to turn me off meat. It is not the animal cruelty that turned me off. I know, I am somewhat desensitized.

It is more of a personal reason. The problem I have is not how the livestock were treated, but the actual chemicals released during their execution. What chemicals do livestock release when they are experiencing fear and pain? Do they release adrenaline? Endorphins? Does the meat contain chemicals we should not be eating? How do our bodies react to these chemicals when we consumed meat?

So I chose to not find out by sticking to more vegetables.

Then I started watching other movies:  Forks Over Knives, Food Matters, and What's on Your Plate? These movies reinforced my desire to have a "fresher" diet. I have been on a mostly natural and organic diet for about eight years. I say mostly since I do not always have access to those foods. Whenever I can, I opt for organic because natural only means food was minimally processed.

The labeling for natural food items are very misleading. For instance, in food, castoreum is not listed by name - but as “natural flavor” on a food package according to CFR on FDA. Castoreum is used in both food and beverages as natural vanilla and raspberry flavoring. So what's the big deal about castoreum, you ask? According to Wikipedia, "castoreum is the yellowish secretion of the castor sac in combination with the beaver's urine, used during scent marking of territory. Both male and female beavers possess a pair of castor sacs and a pair of anal glands located in two cavities under the skin between the pelvis and the base of the tail."

Yeah, no, not a fan. I am staying away from those "natural flavors" for sure.

Thanks to Christine for turning me off meat even more, and inadvertently encouraging to me to be a vegetarian (well, besides the occasional fish, eggs, dairy) by enlightening me to castoreum. During my web surfing about castoreum, I found related articles about a bunch of other yucky stuff in food, that I would not eat if I knew I was eating it. I came across this article called 10 Weird and Gross Ingredients in Processed Food:
  1. Fertilizer in Subway Sandwich Rolls
  2. Beaver Anal Glands in Raspberry Candy
  3. Beef Fat in All Hostess Products
  4. Crushed Bugs as Red Food Coloring
  5. Beetle Juice in Sprinkles and Candies
  6. Sheep Secretions in Bubble Gum
  7. Human Hair and/or Duck Feathers in Bread
  8. Coal Tar in Red-Colored Candy
  9. Calf Stomach in Many Cheeses
  10. Sand in Wendy’s Chili
Seriously, what are these food manufacturers selling us?

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