Closet Vegan

I realized the other day, when picking up some groceries, that besides what I buy always having to meet the criteria of will it keep for quite a bit, (one never knows when there will be money to spare for groceries again, and it goes well with the horder mentatility I have to buy dry and canned goods for the most part) my stash of food these days at home is also entirely vegan. 

Since I have been sick, the thought of dairy really hasn’t been appealing, what with all the phlegm already present in my body, why give ammunition for more? Sick, eating vegan, and surprise surprise, I continue to lose weight. (That probably also has something to do with not being that hungry because I am sick these days.)

It wasn’t a particularly concious decision, just how it has played out. I am an intuitive eater/cook. If my body is craving something in particular, I eat that, thinking that if my body is craving it, it probably has something in it that the body is needing. When I get in the mood for a large green salad, that’s what I eat. In the mood for something salty like potato chips or peanut butter, that’s what I consume. Since I don’t actually add salt to anything, like sugar, I have absolutely none in my pantry. (From that admission, can you guess I am a cook and never bake?) So I don’t feel guilty if my body demands salt every once in a while, in whatever form I can get it. 

So, when I feel like eating dairy, that’s what l I will eat. But these days, it is turning into Vegan while at home, Ovo-Lacto Vegetarian while out in public. Thus, Closet Vegan. Just an observation, and wondering how long this phase of vegan will last. Since I am not going out that much to eat, it means I am mostly vegan these days. The longest I have been vegan was a good two and a half years, but that was made easier by the fact that my husband and I both were practicing vegans and money was no problem. But I kept craving dairy. Looking back, I realized the cravings came once a month, and could also be satiated by something salty. My ex-husband is still vegan, but he never had those monthly hormonal fluctuations in what his body was desiring, so I always figured it is easier for him to keep it up. I also gave up being vegan after our divorce in part because my finances were impacting my eating. I was attending college, and when it was the difference between not eating at all, or eating something vegetarian that was being offered to me, I just started eating rather than standing up for my principles of no animal consumption. Call me a wuss when it comes to my principles, but I’m sure you wouldn’t have appreciated me colliding with your car while passing out driving from lack of food. (I actually do have a history of passing out, due to low blood pressure. Really!) So I was merely being considerate of others, see? As is being ovo-lacto vegetarian, really. It means when in a group going out for food or just being a guest in someone’s home who insists on cooking, I don’t have to explain much, other than no meat. Most non-vegetarian people can handle that. Vegan, well, that’s when it’s just easier to show up at someone else’s house with your own food in hand. No confusion then. No complications. And no need for definitions or explanations!

So me being a closet vegan? I’ll just keep it to myself, as the phrase implies.

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4 Responses to “Closet Vegan”

  1. gary Says:

    I am vegan but OH how I sometimes miss cheese and ice cream which I am allergic to, but YES there are good replacements….

  2. Sara Says:

    When you’re ready to come out..we vegans will be here! 🙂 I hear ya on the ease for others aspect. When I first made the transition, I was pretty much a closet vegan myself (though, I didn’t call it that – I really didn’t name it at all). I ate vegetarian while out with others and at friends houses, but vegan at home. That went on for months, then I realized I no longer wanted (from an appetite perspective) the non-vegan things..so I started not eating them regardless of other’s feelings – heck, I hate mushrooms and never ate those out of politeness…why not include cheese, etc in that.. we all come out in our own time!

  3. redroomsalon Says:

    Thanks for the supportive encouragement. It could be a few years. I do love my cheese. 🙂

  4. Minku Says:

    I gave myself excuse after excuse for eating dairy and not going vegan, when I was vegetarian. It took years, and looking back, I feel like an idiot for not committing to veganism sooner, because all it takes is maturity and the will to look closely at the dairy industry (and the entirety if animal exploitation as well). Lots of people go vegan for selfish reasons like health, but that’s not veganism. Veganism is primarily an ethical commitment to respecting animals: as fellow sentient beings, they have every right to their own bodies and lives, and humans have no business taking their lives for our trivial interests. Without this serious ethical commitment to animal rights, veganism is just another meaningless consumer activity. Let’s look at what milk production actually involves: A dairy cow is forcibly impregnated every year – that’s how she produces milk. When her calf is born, it’s taken away from her and killed for veal. Milk, biologically, is food for a mammal’s baby, not for adults or for other species. The painful separation of the mother cow from her calf happens everywhere there are dairy cows, whether the milk is “organic” or not. And when the cow is too old and less productive (and has become to weak from having her body abused for human profit), she is slaughtered for hamburger meat. Think about that every time you see dairy products.

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