by guest blogger Chef Kathryn Rogers
At the age of seven, I decided to become a vegetarian because the thought of eating animals seemed exceptionally inhumane. Pigs were my favorite of all my four-legged friends, but I felt that if I couldn’t eat those cute little tinkers, I should extend that same courtesy to all living creatures. Fast forward to some 13 years later, when I spent a semester studying in Spain, meat entered my diet once again. Because who can pass up rich and decadent Iberian pork sliced thin on a piece of olive oil soaked toast?!
Following my return to the United States, my health started to take a downward decline – a result of chronic stress and an uptick in food sensitivities. My digestion was a mess, and I found myself constantly tired, swollen and dealing with painful acne breakouts. It wasn’t until I introduced holistically raised meats – high in healthy fats and rich in inflammation-busting omega 3 fatty acids – that I began to see improvements in my health. Following a low sugar, low grain and high nutrient diet (from sustainably raised meats and vegetables) did wonders for my health. As I started to connect more closely to my food and its healing benefits, I also became more curious about the process of raising healthy animals and what it meant for me to be eating meat once again.
This inquiry led me to Primal Pastures for a chicken processing workshop. You can read about the full experience here but the main takeaway was that if I am choosing to eat meat (and I feel strongly it is the healthiest choice for my body at this point in my life), I want to know how the animals are raised. The more I learned about meat production, the more I have been inspired by farmers like Paul Greive who are cultivating not only healthy, humanely raised animals but also more nutrient dense soil and a more connected community.
So from this reformed vegetarian, thank you to all the farmers committed to changing our food system, one pasture-raised animal at a time.
Stay tuned for the Grain-Free Chicken Pot Pie Recipe next month!
Kathryn Rogers is a Conscious Chef with more than 15 years’ experience creating colorful dishes from locally sourced ingredients. She believes that food has the power to change the world – both in our own bodies through nourishing, clean ingredients that fuel whole health and in our larger community by supporting sustainable and regenerative farmers committed to improving the environment and treating workers and livestock ethically and humanely. She splits her time between San Diego, CA and Carson City, NV, where she teaches cooking classes and offers catering and private chef services. Find her recipes for deliciously vibrant living at VivaciousDish.com.
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