Things you might be wondering about us. I will try to respond to any other questions you post in the comments area below.
what's a pescatarian?
That's what I am (Aleisha). I eat no meat other than occasional fish/seafood.
so Aleisha, you are not vegan?
Unlike vegans, who eat no products derived from animals, I do eat some dairy, eggs and honey. I am trying to limit my dairy intake, however, because I usually feel better when I avoid it. You will see dairy alternatives in some our recipes. If you have no problem with dairy, you can usually use a standard cheese, cream, milk, etc., in its place.
how long have you been a pescatarian?
I transitioned gradually, starting about 10 years ago.
why did you choose to become pescatarian?
I grew up on a farm and had family members who were cattle ranchers, sheep raisers and game hunters, so meat was a major component of almost every meal. My mom taught us a lot about nutrition, something I didn't value until I was older. She raised a garden filled with all kinds of awesome veggies and fruit. She ordered all-natural, whole grain cereals from a food co-op. And while we often had sweets around (my dad has a giant sweet tooth that I inherited), she also prepared healthful meals and emphasized the importance of eating vegetables and fruits and whole grain bread. She and my dad no longer live on the farm, but they still grow many fruits and vegetables in their backyard, and my mom still cooks with health in mind.
When I went to college, I did what many students do. I grabbed something fast and didn't focus on how it was prepared or how it would make me feel later. I lived on things like instant noodle packages and toaster pastries and other empty calories.
As I got older and started cooking for myself, I realized it was time to stop living off of highly processed "foods" that don't offer much for nutrition. I also began to realize that most meat didn't really appeal to me, and when I didn't have it, I didn't miss it.
I decided to learn about being a vegetarian. I thought it would shift my mindset to thinking about food as a means of nourishing myself.
I attended a free class on vegetarian cooking. It. Was. Awesome. A local doctor explained the health benefits of meatless diets. Other instructors made recipes and gave us delicious samples. It was very inspiring and empowering. And it felt totally right for me. Being vegetarian is good for the planet, good for people who choose to eat that way, and good for animals. It's such a holistic approach to eating. I felt deeply that this was the right thing for me to do.
However, putting it into practice was a big change. It took me awhile to learn how to prepare good vegetarian meals, what to order at restaurants, and how to listen to my body and respect it by giving it the things it needs. In fact, I'm definitely still learning.
do you ever try to convince Mike to become vegetarian?
Haha! No way. He is not one to change his mind based on what someone else thinks. For him, an omnivore diet is great. Mike craves meals with meat — something that never happens to me. I think there is an intuitive component to diets. He eats in moderation and is active and stays healthy. In fact, the guy is seldom sick.
I try to encourage him to eat lots of fruits and vegetables, and most of the recipes I come up with are vegetable-heavy. He really prefers white bread, regular pasta and white rice, but I will sometimes switch it up and make brown rice or use whole-grain pasta, and he will (a bit grudgingly) eat it. ;)
does he try to get you to eat meat?
Nope. He knew about my preference from the beginning, and he's cool with it.