The Social Vegetarian

Please welcome to the blog, for the first of our Expert Bean posts this month, Emma Walton, a self-confessed social vegetarian.

A twenty-something foodie Emma has the privilege of working and playing in London. She loves to share her own home cooked recipes, as well as her favourite restaurants, bars and markets. Her mantra is “we eat to survive – so why not make a hobby out of it”. Emma’s blog Supper in the Suburbs is dedicated to classic recipes with a fun twist.

Emma Walton

We’d like to thank Emma for joining us and taking the time to tell us why she’s a social vegetarian…

Social Vegetarianism: should we be eating all that meat?

Guest post by Emma Walton

Speak to most vegetarians and they will give you 5, quite compelling, reasons to consider becoming vegetarian: (1) for your own health; (2) as a way to lose weight; (3) for the environment; (4) to help the economy; (5) to end cruelty to animals.

When put in simple terms like this I think most people can’t argue that a plant-based diet might actually do them some good. But still, if you’d asked me 10 years a go, maybe even just 5 years ago, whether or not I’d ever consider vegetarianism I would’ve told you in no uncertain terms – NO!
 EW Aubergine and Pesto Bake (2)
Brought up on traditional meat and two veg, I wanted to care about the animals,to put the environment above my own personal enjoyment, but I preferred the taste of a steak more…a sentiment that a lot of my meat-eating friends share! But slowly but surely I’ve been cutting down my meat in take. I probably eat meat and fish once every fortnight now, or once a week at festive seasons and when the sun’s out and BBQ’s are blazing. I am a social vegetarian. Someone who deliberately chooses not to eat meat during their daily life, but indulges in the odd piece of high quality meat in social situations. And you know what, I don’t feel guilty because I know I’m making intelligent, informed choices.
EW Tikka Paneer
A plant-based diet might be forced upon us all sooner that we think. For the last 5 years there have been warnings that food shortages might mean that vegetarianism becomes more common than eating meat.
Since cutting down on the amount of meat I have seen tonnes of benefits. I am a much healthier and happy person. No longer do I get digestion issues or meat sweats after a big dinner. I will hopefully have reduced my risks of heart diseases and cancer too. Plus my bank balance is much happier too. In particular, I saved an awful lot of money at university by swapping expensive meat for cheap veggies!
 EW Skinny Moussaka
The one thing I can’t change by myself by engaging in social vegetarianism, is that the world still needs us to reduce the amount of meat we eat. Did you know that the amount of beef the average American eats in a year creates as much green house gas as driving a car over 1,800 miles!
And just think, why are we growing roughly 15 pounds of grain to produce just 1 pound of beef, using up vital resources to keep and feed these animals, when we could just eat the grain ourselves…
 EW Halloumi
Deciding to stop eating meat altogether is a very big decision. And I’ve not quite made that step just yet. But perhaps it’s time we all started eating a little less. Why not start doing meatless Monday? Or only eating meat when you know it’s come from a good quality, local, and sustainable source. Vegetarian food can be tasty, satisfying and it’s good for you, so what’s not to love!
To help you on your journey today, why not try one of these delicious vegetarian recipes from my blog Supper in the Suburbs:

So, what do you reckon? We think Meatless Monday is a great idea and those recipes look yummy! Don’t forget to catch up with Emma over on her blog. Click here to see what’s cooking in the London suburbs this week. Alternatively, you can keep up to date on FacebookTwitter and Instagram.


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