For about a year I’ve been a pescatarian. I’ve based my diet around eating vegan meats, beans, and fish. This past week I added free range chicken into my diet (primarily), and several things changed.
Physically I felt full longer.In between meals I typically snack, like all day. I try to choose healthy snacks like fruit, veggies, or things like veggie straws and healthy popcorn. Eating chicken for two meals a day reduced my desire to snack.
What I believe happened is that I increased the amount of protein I ate, which always makes you fuller longer. Before this week I was eating vegan meats, but wasn’t always putting them with healthy side options. I personally think my fullness had more to do with the complete diet I was eating, more vegetables, less salt, less sugar. However, eating so much protein in a chicken breast for every meal definitely played a part in it as well.
2. What people said
The reaction I got from friends, coworkers, and even my partner was shocking. When I reveal to someone that I don’t eat meat, I’m faced with confused faces and concerned comments. “You need to eat protein!” is my favorite. The fact that people believe that the the only way to get protein is through eating meat is baffling to me.
When I started eating chicken again the comments made a complete 180. Some of them were”I’m so proud of you,” “Free range? Baby steps,” paired with huge smiles. I wasn’t mad about this. I needed all of the support I could my first week making the switch to eating chicken again.
3. Food Options
Walking to work from the parking lot off of Trade street, I saw so many more places I could find food at. That was something that was always difficult for date night or even going out with friends. Worrying about that before going out to a restaurant is less of an issue for me now. Keep scrolling to view options for people wanting to eat meat from local farmers or meat that is free range in Charlotte!
Why I stopped eating meat:
I stopped eating meat because I knew that meat that isn’t organic or free range typically has tons of hormones in it. I also couldn’t sit with myself knowing I was contributing to the supply and demand cycle that keeps factory farming alive, an industry that just completely sickens me.
I missed eating chicken to be honest. I missed the easiness of the cooking, the taste, and the memories it brings me of all of the meals my mom made our family growing up.
My Chicken Purchases:
Right now I’m buying free range chicken only. Here you can find producers who are Certified Humane. Here is a list of food companies that raise animals differently than factory farming. They tend to use one of the following labels: grass-fed, pasture-raised, free range, organic, or humane certified.
Going out to Eat in Charlotte:
Viva Chicken has 100% natural hormone free chicken!
Chima Brazilian Steakhouse uses free range chicken.
Halcyon: Flavors from the Earth uses “local artisans” to provide their restaurant the produce and meat.
Rooster’s Wood Fired Kitchen works with local farmers!
Whether you’re a meat eater, pescatarian, vegetarian or vegan in Charlotte, there are tons of options for you. For people like me who prefer to eat meat that was raised cage free or grass-fed, there are options for you! If you’re thinking of switching your diet at all, Charlotte is a great place to be for it. With tons of food options for all diets, Charlotte can suit your needs. I know they’ve suited mine!