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How to reintroduce red meat?

Answered on August 19, 2014
Created February 21, 2013 at 1:48 PM

I haven't had red meat in almost 7 years. I stopped eating it for ethical reasons. I now understand the differences between factory farming and buying local, humanely raised, grassfed meat. I don't have an ethical objection anymore, however I don't know how to reintroduce red meat. There is a major "gross-out" factor for me and the thought of eating it is almost as gross as it would be to eat a dog. I have been able to eat bacon (gateway meat), but I would like to start eating beef again.

So, have you reintroduced meat after a period of not eating it? How did you do it? Any suggestions on how to get past the mental block? Also, if anyone could educate me on the reasons to eat beef, that would be helpful too.

Thanks!

Ae3b7ea9f3755af32287825db8d98796

(2022)

on February 21, 2013
at 10:26 PM

Tagged that question on because it doesn't hurt to hear about the health benefits...maybe I'll learn something I haven't heard.

Ae3b7ea9f3755af32287825db8d98796

(2022)

on February 21, 2013
at 10:20 PM

That's a pretty quick reintroduction! Did you struggle with the psychological aspect or was that not an issue for you?

949d4d02ea7d1abd714cc3347c2c6854

(1021)

on February 21, 2013
at 09:44 PM

Yeah, I heard all that business about having trouble digesting meat, too. Never had any problems. My digestion is so much better now than it was as a vegetarian!

Ae3b7ea9f3755af32287825db8d98796

(2022)

on February 21, 2013
at 08:51 PM

"Wrapping bits of meat in bacon..."

Ae3b7ea9f3755af32287825db8d98796

(2022)

on February 21, 2013
at 08:46 PM

Oh, my! I'm pretty sure I would have a hard time getting anyone to go to dinner with me if I wouldn't sit next to anyone eating meat! I agree that finding health reasons to reintroduce is motivating. I do miss a good roast, I will have to ask my mom for her recipe...might start with just a bit;)

Ae3b7ea9f3755af32287825db8d98796

(2022)

on February 21, 2013
at 08:44 PM

This is really helpful, thank you. I'm thinking that including beef bone broth might be an easy way to start...maybe making a soup using the stock.

F4a6fc9f0b701e12cdf2ad5dadaeb2dd

(360)

on February 21, 2013
at 06:45 PM

...............

Eed7dabde3d61910685845e04605267f

(2934)

on February 21, 2013
at 02:00 PM

Why have you decided to eat beef but still want an 'education' about eating it?

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5 Answers

best answer

3
Eed7dabde3d61910685845e04605267f

on February 21, 2013
at 02:21 PM

The ick factor is a product of conditioning, and like with most conditioned reactions, can be transformed. What is learnt can generally be unlearnt.

Re 'education' I will make the somewhat cliched and obligatory mention that eating red meats helps to add B12, that liver is a nutritional powerhouse, that things like heart have appreciable amounts of coq10. It's not essential to eat a lot of (or arguably even any) meat to have a healthy diet but it would seem to me to make it a lot easier to get a lot of nutrients... When you eat meat you are getting some of the nutrition of what the animals themselves ate. If you can do this with white meat there may not be a reason why you can't do it with red meat. (Aversions aren't necessarily matters of reason though after all. That's not to say there's something wrong with them though or that sometimes they can't be identified as being produced by conditioning.)

Regarding re-introducing beef, I can't speak out of personal experience, as I have eaten it in various forms over a long period of time. I did however used to have a strong aversion to bananas and olives though. I had bananas as a baby but as a teenager gagged at the thought of them for some reason. As they were such a convenient food when started to do regular intense exercise though, I made the decision (or did 'I' lol, who knows?) that I wanted to eat them. Olives too wereone of the foods I had a strong aversion and learnt to like mainly for kicks. Now give me a basil/tomato/olive/combination, with or without vinegar (balsamic), and a happy person I will be :)

I daresay you can learn to like beef if you want to. Stephan Guyanet suggests that we can cultivate a liking for foods that we were previously adverse to by integrating them with dishes we already like, and or adding one flavours we're hardwired to like (he uses the example of how adding salt to bitter brussels spouts helps them to be palatable Eventually someone might like them on their own, boiled and plain. I know I do. Given you like bacon I suggest trying red meat in preparations that involve it (can't think of specifics at the moment I'm afraid) http://wholehealthsource.blogspot.com.au/2012/11/why-do-we-eat-neurobiological_27.html

To do things like that though you probably have to recognise the aversive thoughts and your reactions to thoughts of eating red meat. It's not like those thoughts or emotions define you though and if you are mindful of how you think beef might be beneficial for your health, then chances are you will be eventually be less adverse to eating it.

Ae3b7ea9f3755af32287825db8d98796

(2022)

on February 21, 2013
at 08:44 PM

This is really helpful, thank you. I'm thinking that including beef bone broth might be an easy way to start...maybe making a soup using the stock.

2
949d4d02ea7d1abd714cc3347c2c6854

on February 21, 2013
at 03:03 PM

I was a vegetarian for about 17 years, and reintroducing meat was difficult for me. I was thoroughly convinced it was the "right" thing for my body, yet it still grossed me out. I started with white fish, which was the most similar to tofu (a food I was then comfortable with eating). Even salmon was difficult for me because it was pink, so I literally didn't look at it on my plate. I apologized to my husband and then closed my eyes before I ate it.

Once I was fairly used to fish, I started taking nibbles of mammal-meats. When we went to restaurants, I would order seafood, and my husband would order beef well done. I would just take one bite of his meal everytime so that I could get used to the taste and texture. Restaurant meals are usually more complex, flavor-wise, than what we eat at home, so it was easier to be comfortable. It just took time, and finally I was ready to try some ground beef. Then I moved up to whole cuts. I could have forced myself to do it faster (like with the salmon), but it didn't seem necessary. By trying it just a little at a time, I got used to it emotionally before committing to a big piece. It worked for me!

Wrapping bits of meat in bacon might have been a good way to go about it, though!

Ae3b7ea9f3755af32287825db8d98796

(2022)

on February 21, 2013
at 08:51 PM

"Wrapping bits of meat in bacon..."

0
089dd41b18fbb95ebb5347cded708d98

(5635)

on February 21, 2013
at 09:03 PM

i hadn't eaten meat for 5 years before i started paleo. i started with tuna and chicken first, and then after two weeks, i tried pot roast. i waited to try red meat for last just because i heard it was the hardest to digest. i don't agree with that anymore since red meat takes up the bulk of my diet now. it wasn't any easier/harder to digest than the other meats i had. i didn't use any digestive enzymes to start with.

949d4d02ea7d1abd714cc3347c2c6854

(1021)

on February 21, 2013
at 09:44 PM

Yeah, I heard all that business about having trouble digesting meat, too. Never had any problems. My digestion is so much better now than it was as a vegetarian!

Ae3b7ea9f3755af32287825db8d98796

(2022)

on February 21, 2013
at 10:20 PM

That's a pretty quick reintroduction! Did you struggle with the psychological aspect or was that not an issue for you?

0
0c8f3010ebaee7d5e9338e49824753af

(150)

on February 21, 2013
at 02:31 PM

I have been through what you mentioned. Was even vegan for a year and vegetarian for a decade.

Started out with fish - not that it's my favourite. It's what docs say is good for health. Some say chicken is bad for cholesterol while others say red meat is bad for elevated testosterone. Not that I believed all of it. It's just that going by 'conventional wisdom' gave me support to go past the ick factor. And I introduced poultry and red meat gradually.

This is the same Swati who wouldn't sit with another person eating meat on the same table.I read more and more and realized I'm doing good to my body by introducing them.

Look for what you know will convince you. Like look for awesome looking recipes for that particular meat. For me it would be easy recipe coz I'm one lazy butt :P

Ae3b7ea9f3755af32287825db8d98796

(2022)

on February 21, 2013
at 08:46 PM

Oh, my! I'm pretty sure I would have a hard time getting anyone to go to dinner with me if I wouldn't sit next to anyone eating meat! I agree that finding health reasons to reintroduce is motivating. I do miss a good roast, I will have to ask my mom for her recipe...might start with just a bit;)

-1
7e6644836cdbcbe2b06307ff7db92d31

(693)

on February 21, 2013
at 02:47 PM

Steak

(more characters)

F4a6fc9f0b701e12cdf2ad5dadaeb2dd

(360)

on February 21, 2013
at 06:45 PM

...............

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