Welcome to the
Riverfront Times’ Five Days of Resolutions. Start living right.
Whether you want to actually address climate change on a personal level, or you recently learned that turkeys can purr and even recognize human faces — whatever it is, you’re ready to stop eating animals. Here are some tips to make it stick (and make it a pleasure):
Set yourself up for success. Find a few easy home staples: a bagel with Kite Hill cream cheese, pasta, stir fry. If you’re going out, check the menu first: if there’s only a lone veggie burger or sad red pepper sandwich (who wants those?), keep looking. Find places you can thrive. Most Asian restaurants are rich with vegetarian food. Lean into St. Louis’ many great Thai, Indian and Vietnamese spots and you’ll be set.
Don’t sweat the small stuff, especially starting out. It can seem daunting at first, and you’ll get caught off guard (the menu didn’t mention cheese, so why is this salad covered in it?!). Once you get the hang of it, you’ll spot the red flags. Do your best, don’t beat yourself up, and keep going.
Remember why you’re doing this. For some, the giant carbon cost and deforestation of the meat industry is enough. Others focus on the conditions and abuse of animals in factory and even organic farms. Or you may have recently learned how wretched and dangerous slaughterhouses are, even for the humans who work there. Whatever it is, let that be your guiding principle. You’ll definitely get friction from others. But know that your actions do matter, and that this is a way to make a positive impact each day, every day.
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