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Pescetarianism

 
 
Reply Fri 14 May, 2010 02:29 am
Wikipedia wrote:
Pescetarianism, also called pesco-vegetarianism, is the practice of a diet that includes seafood and excludes mammals and birds. In addition to fish or shellfish, a pescetarian diet typically includes some or all of vegetables, fruit, nuts, grains, beans, eggs, and dairy. The Merriam-Webster dictionary dates the origin of the term "pescetarian" to 1993 and defines it to mean: "one whose diet includes fish but no meat".


This week I resigned from eating red meat, poultry, eggs, and dairy. I may at some point discontinue eating fish and other aqua culture, however at this point I have not chosen to do so.

The last 5 months have been a very interesting time for me. It seems that many changes came in with 2010. Many of these changes I had not set out to do, but certainly some of them were. This was not one of them.

Honestly, this wasn't even on the radar. I'm pleased with my decision, and thought I'd share it here.

As some may know, I love to cook and have on occasion shared recipes here. It seems that it's back to the drawing board to re-engineer some of the old recipes for my new lifestyle. I promise to post updated recipes (white bean chili, corn chowder, etc).

I made my choice based on a number of things. Mostly after doing a thorough introspection of my life and where I had intentionality, revealed to me that this change would represent to me a better wellness and greater ethical peace of mind.

It's funny. The last time I had a piece of cheese, I didn't realize it was my last piece of cheese. I didn't apply any sort of ceremony to this. I just woke up and said "today."

A
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Tofu mostly these days...

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jespah
 
  1  
Reply Sun 16 May, 2010 01:45 pm
This is how I ate for 15 years - no red meat, no poultry. Now I've added poultry (a lot easier to live with a guy who eats red meat - it's a compromise, plus it is a lot easier for me to cook). I was basically healthy but I actually take a lot more care with my intake these days.
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failures art
 
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Reply Mon 17 May, 2010 11:51 am
Have any recipes you'd like to share? No dairy or egg ones?

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ehBeth
 
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Reply Mon 17 May, 2010 02:05 pm
@failures art,
How do you rationalize continuing to eat fish/shellfish etc?

I always had trouble with that. It seemed/still seems to me that it's an artificial separation.

From my perspective, people aren't any kind of vegetarian if they're still eating seafood.

________

So, what's your rationale? Where does this "ethical peace of mind" come from when you're eating something that's been killed?
jespah
 
  1  
Reply Mon 17 May, 2010 04:19 pm
@failures art,
Oh, sure thing. Actually less of a recipe than just stuff to do. I love our indoor grill and pretty much only cook fish that way. Just marinate the hell out of it for a few hours -- some sort of fruit juice and spices is about all you need -- then toss on a hot grill. I like fish barely cooked but RP wants more cookery so I cut the piece in half first before grillerizing. I serve it with cous cous and vegs.

Also -- get to know your fishmonger. I tend to get the good stuff from the back of the fridge. This is, I just talk to the guy, it started off by me asking him how his day was going. Plus I come to the counter almost every week, and have been doing so for over 2 years. They are kinda lonely back there, no one ever seems to talk to the fish guy except during Lent. I don't just do it for the good halibut; our fishmonger is a genuinely nice guy.
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failures art
 
  1  
Reply Mon 17 May, 2010 04:41 pm
@ehBeth,
The ethical part of my choice is not about the killing of animals, although I am sympathetic. The ethical issue for me is a humanitarian one. I view meat, as a luxury which to consume requires an incredible amount of natural resources (feed: other crops, and water) to sustain. I feel that those resources should be used in other ways to help those suffering on earth. I do not need to eat a steak that takes as much natural resources to make, as it would feed dozens of starving people.

Fish is (depending on it's source) a more sustainable resource. It is still a luxury item for me, and one that I reserve for special occasions only. Fish and other aquaculture are certainly not perfect ecological or economical markets, and as such I am very mindful of my consumption.

An additional part of this is cultural. For me, many traditional meals in my home were fish. While I was able to let go of red meat, poultry, dairy and eggs with little second thought, I do not think I am currently strong enough to detach without a certain level of ceremonial-ism. It may be that in some day in the future, I may retire fish as well. Certainly the arguments that apply to the other things I have given up apply to it as well.

My relationship with vegetarianism can be described best by a metaphor with recycling.

I may recycle aluminum (red meat), plastic (poultry), and glass (eggs & dairy) every time, but perhaps only recycle paper (fish & aquaculture) most of the time. The fact that I do not always recycle paper, does not render my other recycling efforts useless, nor does it make those efforts less sincere.

I am in a very exciting time in my life and this is only one part of how I am changing. My goal, in short, is to live more intentionally. Even in still eating fish, there are ways to be intentional.

I don't think there is only one reason for making choices like these. I'm fairly positive that most people assume (understandably) that all people who adopt a vegetarian (or similar) diet and lifestyle do it for the animal rights issue. Like I said, I'm sympathetic, and that IS an issue for me. It was not the issue that motivated me to actually make this lifestyle change.

It's my hope that either (1) the fishing industry will be able to achieve ecological sustainability, and/or (2) that I will be able to mourn and release the cultural ties I have to fish consumption. On this matter in particular, it is a very emotional issue.

Did I answer your question sufficiently?

A
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