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Exclusion is lame. Helping is better.

I’ve been thinking. Dangerous, I know. And alas, I must rant what has been rolling around in my head for a good month.

It’s funny how putting something out there like, “I’m going plant-based” can make people circle the wagons and exclude visitors or newcomers. I mean, really? It amazes me sometimes at how exclusionary people can be about their choices, especially when it comes to food. People who make different choices from us are NOT evil, they are DIFFERENT from us.

When I say plant-based…

What I mean at this exact moment in time is just that: plant-BASED. Some say “vegan”, others “vegatarian”, and still others “lacto-ovo”. There are lots of ways to say that a meal plan, and the meal plate is based on things that grow out of the ground. My fridge and cupboards are loaded with an overwhelming majority of food made from things that grow out of the ground.

I’d like to offer grace, and a team spirit. Not a “I-know-better-than-you-because-I-read-one-book” attitude.

No one has cornered the best way to do anything. Eating a VERY occasional egg doesn’t invalidate my plant-based membership card thank you very much. My reasons for eating this way are just that: MY reasons. I don’t have a life-threatening allergic reaction to eggs, so I’m not going to have a meltdown if my gluten-free hamburger bun has trace amounts in the bun I eat. I learned a lot about that from this book.)

So, could we all just take a deep breath?

“Plant-based” to me might mean something different to someone else. AND THAT’S OK. For me, there may just be an occasional piece of bacon, or a fish taco. Or a very occasional crunchy cheese snack. I eat this way 95-99% of the time so I can eat those things ONCE IN A WHILE. This doesn’t make me less of a person, or less knowledgable about ANY of the things I know to be true for me.

Let’s help each other, K?

I’d love it if we could all just be better about including each other, helping each other on our own journeys. I don’t know everything, have never claimed to. Either does anyone else, and those who claim they do scare me. Period. (This phrase has been rolling around in my head: “There’s no zealot like the newly converted.”)

So, what does “plant-based” mean to you, and how can I help you in your journey?

How could you help someone else?

Comments

Michelle Wood
Reply

To me a plant based diet means that you are getting the majority but not necessarily all of your food/nutrients from items that grow in the ground. I am in the process of moving my diet to be primarily plant based but not exclusively plant based. I love this post and it truly speaks to me. I don’t like labels or harsh judgments. I have my own journey to follow and its not my place to disrespect or criticize anyone else’s journey just because its different than my own.

Brandie Kajino
Reply

Hi Michelle, I would agree! We all have a path to walk, and we have to make the choices right for us. I wish you all the best in your journey, and hope if you need help, you’ll reach out. 🙂

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