Why I’m A Flexitarian & How It Works For Me

Acai Smoothie Bowl : Geri Hirsch

Acai Smoothie Bowl : Geri Hirsch
Disclaminer: I believe that everyone needs to do what feels best for them and their bodies and I’m by no means pushing a diet agenda.

Calling myself a vegetarian or pescatirian just wasn’t right. I eat veggies but I also ate fish and I VERY rarely, and I mean rarely, eat meat. We’re talking once or twice a year. So where did that leave me? It put me in the flexitarian category.

Flexitarian: a person who has a primarily vegetarian diet but occasionally eats meat.

If you’re rolling your eyes, you wouldn’t be the first. And if you’re not, thank you! After identifying with being a flexitarian for the last decade, I’ve had my fair share of judgement in the form of laughter, skepticism and debate (which is why I’ve never written about it).  People have asked me if I was making the term up, others have tried to persuade me to give up animal protein all together, I’ve had people try to get me to eat meat on the spot, you name it and I’ve dealt with the absurdity over this term.

While some don’t get it, it makes perfect sense to me and it works brilliantly for my lifestyle. “Always listen to your body” is my number one health rule which is why I feel more comfortable allowing myself the diet flexibility that my body may need in my lifetime. I want the health benefits of eating a primarily plant and fish based diet however if/when my body craves meat I want the freedom to listen to my body and eat what my body tells me to eat.  On top of that, I like the idea of being open to certain life experiences. For example, while I was in Argentina where they are known for their meat OF COURSE I went to the best restaurant in town and ate the best damn steak the country had to offer.

I decided to write about this because I know I’m not alone in the eating-little-meat-but-eating-some-meat category and I was so appreciative for the doctor who shared the flexitarian term with me. In a world where everyone wants you to label things, I finally had a way to define my preferences.

What’s your dietary preference?

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25 comments

  1. I’m with you here. I’m vegetarian almost all of the time, except when I’ve been to places that still retain their local fishing practices and then I’ll dive in, it always tastes so much better anyway. You do you 😉

  2. Thank you for this post…and for the term! It sounds like I eat a similar diet as you and it can be hard to explain to people. I don’t want to limit myself by NEVER eating meat so if I really crave it or I think it would add to an experience (like your Argentina trip) than I will definitely go for it without feeling guilty or like I’m cheating. Flexibility in diet is a wonderful thing, in my opinion.

  3. Thank you for posting this! My 13 year old daughter tried being a vegetarian but ended up feeling awful and having some issues. I had a hard time persuading her to eat a little meat and dairy, but she is now and is feeling better. I sent her the link to this post, I think you have a healthy outlook on eating and want her to read it.

  4. Well…I’m not a declared flexitarian but the reality of my daily diet is that I’m. I love the Mediterranean food style that I enjoy in my region and that means lots of fruit and vegetables. But I also eat some meat and fish (more the second than the first).

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  5. Love this! You should never feel guilty for eating in a way that works for you nor should you need to defend it. I’ve been eating paleo for a while to help with some stomach issues and it’s been so helpful!

  6. This post really interests me, I’ve always enjoyed eating meat but I’m starting to notice how it affects my body after I’ve eaten it, so last week I wanted to try having a meat free week.
    I ate veg and meat alternative foods but I did have some fish and sea food. I also decided to cut out milk and have Oat milk instead. I really noticed a difference I how I felt in just a week, I’m really interested in giving Flexitarianism a go.

  7. flexitarian too! due to long hours of boxing training i have to eat meat but my diet is based on plants and fish though i still eat meat! thank you for this post!

  8. I think people are being way too judgmental with other people’s diets. It’s none of their business how a person prefers to eat and I definitely agree that we should all listen to our bodies and eat what makes us feel our best! xx

  9. I’m the same! However I never eat farmed meat, only wild meat like elk or boar. It is primary a decision based on animal welfare. I really can’t understand how people after seeing how our farmed animals often are treated can eat this type of meat. So I urge everyone to make wise choices 🙂

  10. So interesting! In my case, I don’t eat dairy, gluten, and red meat… not sure theres a name for it but it works perfectly for me and my bod, xx

  11. I love this. I always tell people that I eat 90% vegan and they look at me like I’m crazy! I just like to tell people that what I eat is only effecting me and no one else, because it’s my body! Do what feels good for you.

  12. Ha! I’ve been accused of being vegetarian by daily meat eaters and of being primitive by hardcore vegans. Truth is, I eat what I like, when I want – wich means lots of carbs, fruits and veggies, a little salad, dairy and eggs galore and almost no meat/fish/poultry- but I eat it. If I skip one of those groups for too long I feel weak and start craving it really bad – if thats not a sign from my body then I don’t know what would be. I’ve been told that my diet is unbalanced but I’m very healthy. Everyone has different needs…

  13. I’m the same. I prefer eating vegetarian diet and avoid red meats and the like. I love fish/seafood. A severe vitamin b12 deficiency is what initially brought me back to eating meat after quite some time of avoiding it. I haven’t ever heard this phrase used before but I love it!

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