I have never gone vegan or vegetarian, and I have never claimed to have adopted either of these lifestyle’s / eating styles / diets.
There are times (especially when I go out somewhere) when I do choose vegan options, and my favorite bakery is gluten free & vegan.
Let me break it down for you, if I had my way, I would eat like every other “normal” / “mainstream” human being in the western world, who can eat ice cream, cheese, pizza, yogurt, cottage cheese, cream cheese, and anything I wanted.
That all changed for me when I was 23. I had spent one horrible weekend with a nasty stomach bug, and it changed my life as I knew it.
Up to that point my only real food aversion was that I didn’t and still don’t like the smell or taste of beef.
After I had that bug, I quickly figured out that my body wouldn’t tolerate any amount of dairy, no matter how small (even the slightest traces left behind from washing dishes makes me sick). I also learned over the course of the next couple of years (by the time I was 25) that I had milder sensitivities to eggs (I can forget about scrambled or hard boiled eggs, those have the same effect as dairy), though I found if they are in baked goods, I can get away with it on occasion. Gluten does bother me a bit, but not so bad I can’t enjoy some bread, as long as it is dairy free and I enjoy it in limited quantities.
Though I have wondered if I had milk sensitivities before the bug, as there were a few times in college that I wonder about. It just wasn’t bad enough if it was, to put two and two together. Though, now, years later it does make me wonder.
The eggs and dairy issues are why I choose vegan when I am out, unless I go somewhere I am familiar with and know what I can order. If not, I usually end up with a salad.
I still love chicken, fish, venison, and a little bit of lamb on a rare occasion. I also love honey.
I couldn’t go completely vegan by choice, I would only do it if I was forced to because my body couldn’t tolerate the foods.
I really do miss yogurt, ice cream and cheese. Don’t get me started on how much I miss Tillamook Cheese.
I also have no ethical, moral or religious objections to eating animal products, and I definitely don’t object to others who want to eat meat and animal byproducts.
At the same time, if you choose to be vegan or vegetarian, you are perfectly welcome to do so, just don’t be judging my life, diet and lifestyle and I won’t judge yours.