I’ve been on this super restrictive diet for a little while now. Basically my guts are so screwed up that I’m to the point that I get an allergic reaction to anything starchy, or any foods made from grains, including rice. So this is the way I’m going to heal my digestive system, and it’s going to take a few years. But, the really hard part is that it makes it damn near impossible to dine out anywhere, and most of my home cooked meals are bland and boring. As someone who loves food so much that it’s one of the few ways you can make me happy when I’m down, this is really depressing. Eating has become a chore, and half the time I’m sobbing while I choke down my food. But, I know this is for the best, and for the first time in a very, very long time, I don’t feel physical pain after I eat. So there’s that at least.
Anyway, so now that I’m on this restrictive diet, I have to eat meat again. And man, it’s hard. Not only because I prefer a vegetarian diet for a variety of reasons, but mostly because I simply don’t like meat. Seafood I can jive with, but meats and poultry I have a hard time swallowing. I don’t like the taste, and I don’t like the texture. I never have. But the strange thing and unexpected thing is how people react when I say I “have to” eat meat. Recently someone asked me why I have to eat meat, and then followed that up with the declaration that no one hasto eat meat.
Well, I saw this graphic floating around Tumblr, and I crossed off all the things I can’t eat anymore. Then I put an asterisk next to the things that I can sort of eat, but only if I make it from scratch myself, or things that have to be consumed raw with no additives. (For example I can’t eat canned or roasted or flavored nuts, but I can eat raw bulk nuts, and mostly have to shell them myself.) If you take a look at the graphic, and then look at what’s left after all the items that are crossed out, it’s pretty obvious why I have to eat meat again. There’s no place else that I can get the nutrients and calories I need. All of the substitutes that vegetarians and vegans use for calories and things like proteins and B vitamins I can no longer eat, so it doesn’t leave me with much choice.
Sometimes we have to make sacrifices to achieve the things that we feel are ultimately for the best, even if they might not be what we immediately want or what we’re used to. And other people may not understand it, and all the explanations in the world might not ever get them to. But that’s okay. Sure, it looks like I’m disregarding my moral, political, and even preferential tastes. But it’s for my health, and that’s more important than anything else right now. I need to gain control over my body, and this is the best way to achieve that goal. Since I’ve eliminated all the agitating foods from my diet I’ve already seen positive change both in my physical appearance and how my insides feel. I may not like what I’m eating, and I may deeply miss all of my favorite foods, and it may feel weird to be eating certain things again despite my objections, but it’s what I have to do in order to take care of the only body I have.