The Conscientious Carnivore

I decided to go raw vegan for a few days and something interesting happened.

My friends on Facebook started dividing into teams.


I’ll call them Team Veggie and Team Protein.

First a little background.

I pride myself on the diversity of my friends on Facebook and in life. Come to my house for a gathering and you will swear that Michael Jackson has risen from the dead and is taping a new rendition of  We Are the World. This diversity extends itself to diet and exercise.  My folks typically fall into two groups: Those who think I am a health zealot freak and those who are as passionate as I am.  The second group is where you find my two teams.

When I posted that I was furthering my relationship with produce people started picking sides. My veggie friends were virtually high five-ing me, sending me recipes and reposts that poke fun of  my ‘meathead’ friends.  This I found very funny.

My protein people were more subtle:  holding a quiet vigil…mourning my muscles.  While not as vocal I could hear their chant “Where are you getting your protein.”

I respect all of these people tremendously. Committing to a way of eating takes bucket loads of discipline. Vegetarian or Paleo, you get huge props from me for just making a DECISION about what you eat.

I never intended to go raw vegan forever. Waaaay too much chewing. This was a spiritual and health quest. Spiritual in that I needed to come clean with my body. I needed to eliminate the crud and take a close look at the signals it was sending me. In those three days I lived off of green smoothies, nuts, kombucha, guacamole and tomato and cucumber salad.  With no portion control. I liked that part. :)

From that experience I made some more permenant changes. I decided to continue to limit dairy and meat to almost never.  Why? Because my body doesn’t respond to it well at all. I get achy and bloated. Why not say Never? Because cheese makes me happy. It might be once a year but I WILL make my famous macaroni and cheese and I WILL dive in.  Now as far as meat is concerned, if it were not for my blood disorder, I would give it up completely. My cells crave it so I have settled on a monthly serving of local, grass-fed beef liver for now.

I have some other considerations. I am gluten sensitive and most grains are a no go.  Sugar causes inflammation in my joints and must be limited as well. I have also decided that I will only eat meat that has been processed humanely.  Recently I read,  The Way We Eat: Why Our Food Choices Matter recently and it resonated with me. The way animals are treated in most slaughter houses and processing plants is simply un-Godly in my opinion.  I’ve decided that simply saying  grace before I eat is not enough. I mean, beyond showing gratitude should we really be asking God to save us from our own choices?

Here is a video about the book:

Sooooo….. where do I get my protein? I eat a variety of vegetables, beans, nuts, seeds and fish. Sorry team veggie but I am finding that this balance gives me the best variety of amino acids. I think fish (tuna and salmon specifically) is the absolute best bang for my buck (check out this chart so see how I made my decision). It is nutritionally dense and is considered a complete source of protein in just over one serving. With vegetables, it can take many, many servings to get a the RDA of a specific amino acid. While red meat is similar in its protein profile,  I’ll pass on the connection to certain diseases (when eaten frequently).

Before you get out your clubs I know many extremely healthy people who represent both teams. This is just what works for me.

So why a conscientious carnivore? Two reasons:

1) I really like the word conscientious and how it works next to carnivore


2)I l like the idea of getting back to basics in an evolved kinda way.

This is the way I plan to eat.

Until I change my mind.

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About Sagdrina J

Sagdrina Jalal is a Holistic Health and Fitness Consultant. Through her website, she consults with clients across the country. Holding a degree in Education from the University of Georgia, she sees herself as both a lifelong teacher and student. She writes for several online publications including a blog and a Facebook page that celebrates the beauty and accomplishments of those over 40. Sagdrina is a runner, recently completing the Miami ING marathon as a birthday present to herself. She also balances a commitment to Crossfit with a regular yoga practice. Her husband is a former Army ranger and a current Ironman, while her three children are also accomplished athletes who keep her busy. In addition to supporting her family’s active lifestyle, Sagdrina has found that proper nutrition is key to managing her auto-immune challenges and her sons’ asthma. And finally, when not obsessing over health and fitness, Sagdrina loves traveling, enjoying most the moments she gets to live life as a total beach bum.
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3 Responses to The Conscientious Carnivore

  1. Pingback: Sweat Everyday – The Conscientious Carnivore

  2. Pingback: To Juice or To Blend… That IS the Question! (Part 1) | Fit Is The NEW 40!

  3. Pingback: Sweat Everyday – To Juice or To Blend… That IS the Question! (Part 1)

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