My life as a Vegan

in istilleatmeat •  last year 

Warning this post will have lots of meat being cooked, prepared and otherwise being objectified as food porn. Proceed at your own risk.



At one point in my life, I was a vegan. I did it for two things one I was curious and the other is to impress a woman. She was one of those island girls down south who was studying here in Manila to become a chef.

I recall she told me she decided to become a vegan because all day long she would be smelling beef stock boiling and it turned her stomach and decided to just eat veggies. seeds and tofu. She always had a lot of soy milk in the fridge and would drink one whenever she felt hungry.

I remember going home from school and she would be cooking dinner and would always prepare a vegan meal for herself and a meaty dish she learned from school that day. Dinners were always exciting because I never knew what she would prepare for me.

I am not a picky eater. I would eat anything that is placed in front of me except avocados. So during the course of one dinner, I asked if I can taste her food. She looked at me with skepticism because she knows I am such a meat eater. I love steaks, burgers, and hotdogs with lots of mustard and pickle relish. I do eat a portion of grains and vegetables but more than half of my plate would be loaded with meat.

If I go to an all you can eat buffet you can see me in the carving section as well as the Japanese section stuffing my face with sushi and sashimi. My record is staying four hours in the restaurant with constant resting and drinking hot green tea for digestion.

We never had that "Turn you into a Vegan" talk because she respected me and I respected her choices but when I decided to try her lifestyle I saw the twinkle in her eyes as if I proposed to her.

So she proceeded slowly because she knew the dangers of abruptly changing my diet as she slowly eased off the animal-based proteins and replaced them with a lot of nuts, seeds, tofu, and protein supplements. I was still playing football and doing Muay Thai as well so I could not afford to lose mass and energy.

The first three weeks were hard and I recall these were the things I had to contend with.

Meat cravings


I love my steaks dry rubbed with pepper and salt and cooked medium rare. I don't use a lot of gravy as I want to taste the flavor and fat content of the steak. When I smell the sizzle of a good steak it was really hard to reign in my cravings and I had to get out.


Maybe after Korea where there are so many Fried Chicken and Beer places, the Philippines is the next most dangerous place for chickens. We have so many variants of roasted chicken from commercialized one's from Andok's Chicken and Baliwag to Cebu styled roasted chicken like Linoan and Bacolod Chicken Inasal.


When out drinking the best thing that comes with ice cold beer is some Crispy Pata which is a deep fried crunchy leg and knuckles of a pig. Although as an athlete we didn't drink much on occasions we would and you know this will be served. Again I often needed to make a quick escape.


No more Sushi or Sashimi for me. I could eat more than a kilo of fish and whenever I would pass by a buffet restaurant I have to hurry lest I cave in and eat a whole tuna or salmon.

Fatigue, Injuries, and numbness

We were very careful of this and she knew I needed to supplement my diet with hormones and multivitamins because playing football meant a lot of running and even with shin guards those kicks from defenders pack a wallop and I have a lot of bruising and injuries to contend with.

With the gradual change in my diet I experienced some fatigue and numbness due to some B12 deficiency. Even if we were careful I was in danger of some deficiencies so further supplements were given to me.

I also felt that the injuries and bruises lasted longer but have no scientific basis.

Limited Food choices and price

This is a problem vegans face anywhere and the Philippines is no exception. Being in an agricultural country you would think that fruits and vegetable are cheap but believe me eating healthy is more expensive here.

Most restaurants here cater to meat eaters in general and would have a token salad that is quite sad to look at. Some lettuce, jello, croutons, tomatoes, eggs, and drizzled with either a vinaigrette or salad dressing of either Ceaser or Thousand Island. Woe to a vegetarian who neither partakes ovo or lacto in their diet.

So usually when you go out with friends you usually just have a drink because it's hard to eat out unless you go to an Indian or Mediterranean restaurant. Which brings us to prices.


To put it into perspective let us take a look at Wendy's menu. A garden salad costs about 132 Pesos which is about 2.52 USD a Bacon Mushroom Melt Burger costs 91 pesos or 1.74 USD.

Groceries and Markets don't fair any better as a head of lettuce could be about a dollar and a few pieces of pork chops about roughly the same.

So the time that we were both vegans I saw an increase in grocery bills because the nuts and seeds were only available in specialty shops.

Crazy isn't it. It would be better if you live in the province as you can grow your own vegetables but then there are lower job opportunities as compared to living in the Metro where most people are.

Man Boobs and Hot flashes

Okay, this is a fallacy but I wanted to share a story. I was awakened by the sensation of having my chest rubbed. I switched the light and see her with a devilish grin and telling me "So that is why you like boobs so much."

Apparently during the time of my inactivity because of my injury, I gained some weight. I have a fast metabolism when I exercise but during sedentary periods I am quick to gain weight.

I know it as a myth busted but still scared me at that time when she said in a very matter-of-fact tone that it must be all the soy that I am eating. She knew it wasn't true and was just messing with me.

Due to some other circumstances we eventually broke up and moved on and the first thing that I did was go to a hamburger joint and get their biggest one and load it with bacon and fries. I remember the taste of the beef and the bliss of taking a bite out a crunchy bacon and I knew that this was right for me.

I know I am making a terrible case here Eve and you can refute all of those but I admire and respect those individuals who neither eat meat, egg or dairy products as it takes a lot of discipline to do so.

In any kind of lifestyle, there are pros and cons. We just have to live it without regrets.

So tonight I am going out and eat in a Korean BBQ restaurant take a piece of lettuce, some Kimchi and place that wonderfully grilled pork belly and slather that bad boy with doenjang-honey-ginger-gochujang paste. Roll it and pop it in my mouth for an exquisite experience.


No??! Still not doing it for you @evecab? hahaha

If you are interested to join you can click on this link My "Convince Me" Challenge - Why I still eat meat and join this wonderful contest by my fellow Promo-mentor @evecab

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Yeah, I was thinking of giving veganism a go at some point. I am a meat eater through and through but am evolving towards the veg end. I think you can struggle to get all the nutrients you need as a vegan and may require a little supplementation, although it is possible to be healthy and even have some variety in your diet. Although, let's put it this way - I'm not quite ready yet!

I feel you brother! I try to keep a balance diet of meat. vegetables, grains and fruits but I don't think it was possible that I would be able to give up meat!

ayyyyaahh pasaway ka! Kakamiss mga eat out days. What would be difficult for us as a family is there aren't many organic restaurants. We still eat meat. Not sure how to go about going vegan.

The soy stuff is feminizing, don't take my word for it. I read it here

haha no it has been debunked by other studies. Believe me I read it when she did that hahaha to make sure it wasn't true!

Come on brother let us see that proof. If you say something is debunked let us all know where that proof is?

di nga? do you still have the link that debunked it? would be curious to see it.

I would like to see the study that debunked it as well. At this point, I'm still convinced that soy is very disruptive to the endocrine system. If that's not true, I want to see the proof!

Hahaha you must have been dedicated for the girl, to go vegan xd

Live it without regrets....wise words my friend. Interesting read, i thinky many can of luck!

Thank you that is the only way to live

I was a vegan at one point in time. It was the worst 4 hours of my life. I went around and told probably 300 people that I was vegan and started doing crossfit and made sure to post my workouts to facebook to let everyone know how healthy I was. Being a full time vegan and trying to save the world can be a full time job, it is exhausting. I think that is one of the main reasons that they are all in such great shape.

But seriously, there are so many benefits to veganism, but for me, I choose meat. I like to use my meat smoker and grill too much and I grew up in Korea eating at the beef and leaf joints all the time, so I know how good that last meal in your post was. Too bad I haven't been able to find a good one here in America yet. The Philippines sounds like it may be my kind of place to live though because the food looks good. My wife and I are moving in a few years to go travel the world and we were thinking of Thailand, but I have been looking more and more into the Philippines as well. If I do choose there, we will have to go out and get some food some time.

Yeah admittedly I felt lighter when I only had fruits and vegetables and my poop cycle was on point!

Definitely choose Philippines we have so many amazing places and Koreans practically are making this place a 2nd Korea with so many Koreans setting up shop, studying, retiring and having vacations here.

Definitely we can go out have some food and alcohol.

I love your entry Mav! Excellent post. Cost is definitely a valid reason, and it really sucks! I''m lucky that I'm actually able to save money, because meat can be quite expensive here. I also don't take any supplements (maybe I should?)...Thanks for sharing your experience!

Yeah Eve i think it would be an easier choice if it wasn't such an expensive lifestyle here.

OMG with your active lifestyle I am surprised you are not taking any! Consult with your physician.

Well my case is a little special, since I do eat eggs sometimes. I have access to eggs from happy chickens here on our property, and that's why I don't like to call myself a 100% vegan. I prefer the term cruelty free instead.

I gave up meat and dairy products completely though...I feel very good, full of energy. I think when the body is missing something, it tells you through symptoms of fatigue, weakness, etc, and I don't have any of that =). I have 100% vegan friends who are also athletes, and they are fine too. I think also the key is to learn how to prepare a balanced meal, which is something vegans have to re-learn.

The truth in my case is I could never be able to be a vegan, I love eating meat so much! And even though I like some salads, there are usually no comparison in how good these 2 type of meals taste.

Meat for the win! hahahah

I thought so too because I come from a family who loves doing Sunday BBQ brunches and when I said I was going to try becoming one my sisters laughed at me.

In the end meat for the win!

Can I come with you? I am dying for the Samgyupsal (grilled pork belly) and kimchi that I haven't had for months. Hahaha

Oh I love eating that! I get to eat it at least once a week. I have so many friends who love eat all you can korean bbq!

I envy you. I can't have those delicious Korean foods here in my province. I wish there could be a Korean restaurant also in the city soon.

being a vegan did not even cross my mind. to me one can not go without the other. but i guess having a bit of experience in the two is nothing bad. thanks for shearing BIG UPS...

Self-descipline is neccessary for this kind of diet.

Indeed and the meat hunger pangs are difficult to ignore especially when you smell it.

I can't imagine myself turn vegan. But I do love to eat vegetables... I will try my best to have balance diet with vegetables and meat for my meal.

Yummy yummy.. Salivating pics. Converting to a vegeterian is never easy. I feel their are massive amount of food nutrients one is part of that he cuts when he becomes a vegan and this has a huge impact in terms of deficiency on one's health . Atleast you gave it a try, next time when it's unavoidable to become a vegan(doctor's advice).. It'll be easy for you to fully convert.
Great time with that wonderfully grilled pork belly.. one of my best dishes.

Well you take supplements and alternative sources. I know some athletes who are full vegans and they do very well.

I can't imagine quitting meat and fish :P You went through lot of pain, man

Well it was worth it she was someone very special.

I am not sure I could become a vegan. I would worry too much about deficiencies and such. That, and I really like chicken!!

Oh you'll love it in my country then because its the 2nd worst country to be a chicken haha Fried, Roasted, baked, in a stew you name it we have a dish for it haahha

Image result for carnivore meme



Fellow foodie, be an all rounder. Sticking to just veggies are restrictive.

Well its a matter of choice or need for some people. I eat everything meat and vegetables haha

I was on vegan diet for almost four months because of my health issues. Then I went back to gluten/ sugar/yeast free diet. What I missed and craved more than meat was cheese.

I'm not that crazy with cheese and i could live without it haha but meat and the sizzle was what I really craved for !

I eat a more balanced diet now .

I was vegetarian for a long time. I was fat and sick way too much. Now I grow my own food. It is MUCH easier to grow cows and chickens around here than any plants but sagebrush.
Which makes a nice seasoning for your chicken or beef...
We do keto / IF, but not like a religion and are much thinner and healthier.

When I lived in the province it was easier to grow my own vegetables and Chickens were a plenty.

My sister is doing keto diet and she remarked an increase in energy.

I was getting "insulin resistant" and cleared it up with the keto. Pretty pleased with that, sure beats becoming diabetic!

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