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... where vegetarians and vegans are verbalizing and visualizing views on virtually anything.

My husband lost weight...

April 16, 2014 in Health by Carrie | visit Carrie's blog
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Carrie
Blog posts: 3
Thumb_rice-dish Rice salad
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...and the in-laws blame me for not feeding him properly!

Certain people are endowed with ultra-charged metabolism rates. They can wolf down unending servings of calorie-laden meals, without seemingly making a dent in their hunger or an outward bulge in their stomach.

Others of us must eat sweets sparingly, as you can almost see the morsel of cake lodge itself permanently above your right hip within minutes of swallowing. As fate would have it, these folks are often endowed with not just one, but a whole row of vanilla-white sweet teeth.

My darling husband is definitely in the first category. Mine shall be left unnamed.

He is one of those guys who can pick up a baseball bat for the first time and hit a home run. Naturally athletic, you could say, with a hyper energy drive to boot.

The only sport I seem to have a high endurance for is swimming, where there are no round objects for me to trip over or that come hurtling towards my face (but that whole clingy spandex issue comes into play, though).

For his whole life living at home, all of the energy spent on those brutal soccer matches, grueling mountain biking, or rounds of tennis were replenished by his mother's meals, consisting primarily of a thick slab of meat. It was totally normal to have sausage for breakfast, chicken for lunch, and pork for supper, all in the same day.

Now I am responsible for feeding him, and the plates I put before him (at first) were usually colored in green, yellow, red, orange, and purple. He missed the palette of pale pink with streaks of white, to nearly blackened and brown-spotted.

He lost weight.

What would be cause for rejoicing for Category B members was a source of consternation for this Category A guy. He was already slender to start with!

When his parents noticed, I was instantly to blame. They did it nicely, putting it about as gently as you can in a culture where it's entirely acceptable to comment (to a Category B person), “You're a lot fatter now, huh?”

In his nearly daily phone calls to the parents, they would remind him, “You're making sure to eat meat, right?”

Fortunately, my husband graciously eats all the weird vegetables and grains I put on his plate, but matter-of-factly states that his body requires a little more 'oomph'. So to not make him sneak behind my back to the street-side grease-pit, I ended up teaching myself how to cook meat to serve him. My own diet changed. Now we eat fish regularly. When that's not on the menu, I'm now okay with grilling up something extra for him.

I realized I was changing my own values and lifestyle just to stay in the good graces of the in-laws. I was fairly flexitarian to start, but I was the one who had been forced to bend and twist into painful splits to give ground on my mostly anti-meat stance. There was no flexibility on their part. In their mind-view, meat=good, no meat=bad.

My next battle is to not silently hide behind my husband's defense that I cook well, but to assert to the step-father why it's okay, even healthy, to follow a vegetarian diet.

Any tips from my fellow vegetarians on how to begin this dialogue?

Image credits:
The Scale by Crossfire
Rice salad by madmaven
Vegetables by MFinderup

Tags: vegetarian health nutrition veggie weight

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