When I was at the gym earlier this week doing tricep dips, my arms started to shake. I don’t usually shake so I sat up feeling a little defeated. The guy next to me said “You know what you need? Red meat. Loads of protein to make you stronger”.
I instantly felt annoyed. Not because he didn’t read my mind to know I was vegan, but because of the protein obsession that marketers have created.
I then didn’t know how to react. How soon or necessary is it to tell people about your diet and lifestyle choices?
I ended up explaining to him why red meat is not my thing and that I eat plenty of protein (thank you very much!) via spirulina, nuts, legumes, beans, quiona, oats… the list goes on.
The confusion on his face was worth it, but I did wonder how necessary it is to tell people about the lifestyle choices we make.
Image if I arrived at a date’s house (without knowing him well) to find he has spent hours cooking a lamb roast and for me, only not to be able to eat it.
If I were in that situation should I take Kate Hudson’s advice in How to lose a guy in 10 days? Cry and tell him it’s beautiful but I just can’t eat meat? With soft sobs I would murmur “Mary had a little lamb, little lamb, little lamb”.
What if work colleagues were to surprise me with a birthday cake that wasn’t vegan. Surely they would feel disappointed.
When topics are related to nutrition, I find it easy to slip in our dietary choices, but meeting new friends and colleagues, nutrition isn’t something everyone is fascinated with, so it isn’t always talked about.
I did, however, have a work colleague ask me if I’d like some meat balls that she brought in. “I said no thanks, I’m vegan”. I pondered afterwards over if I really needed to say that. Perhaps in those situations I could have just said “No thank you, I don’t eat meat” or even just “No thank you”.
I personally think that it’s important for people to know your diet and lifestyle choices. Not only are our diet and lifestyle choices a big part of who we are, but it also helps others.
I have been in the situation where I have cooked a beautiful cake for a friend’s birthday then found out she was gluten intolerant.
We often eat together and although she never orders any bread or pasta, I didn’t assume she wasn’t eating these foods because she has an intolerance.
My friend said that the subject never came up and didn’t feel the need to tell everyone.
I have to agree with her on this. But it would have saved me the embarrassment of turning up with a gift she couldn’t accept.
I think that it is necessary for people to know your diet and lifestyle choices; it’s a part of who you are and it says so much about you.
The question is: How necessary and soon is it to tell people about your diet and lifestyle choices?
I’d love to hear your thoughts on this in the comment box below.