Getting sick spoils return to meat

Final in our 'give it a go' series

Last updated 07:53 09/01/2014
Mathew Grocott
DAVID UNWIN/FAIRFAX NZ
MEAT SWEATS: Manawatu Standard deputy chief of staff Mathew Grocott went meat-free for a week, with dire consequences.

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Well, this sucks.

For the last four days I've felt awful, stomach churning, cramps, heart burn, lack of appetite, lack of sleep, lack of ability to keep feed down, I've just felt bleurgh.

I should have stayed a vegetarian.

For a week I'd been eating meat-free; it had been easy, fun at times, through I don't recommend vegetarian sausages.

But then my first lunch after finishing my vegetarian week gives me food poisoning and I spend the next few days hating life, and meat.

I'm not sure where the idea to try vegetarianism came from.

I know it wasn't from a particular concern for the plight of animals bred for consumption. I know many meatworkers and what their jobs entail and that's never bothered me.

I'm a bit of an environmentalist, so perhaps it was related to how vegetarianism is a more sustainable lifestyle that puts less pressure on the planet.

Mainly though, I think I was just bored with what I had been eating and wanted to try something different.

After some research it seemed easily doable, for a week at least.

More importantly, that research showed me vegetarianism did not involve only eating vegetables, which was lucky because I've never been sure what a tomato was. I'm picking it's a fruit.

Typically when I'm at work I buy my lunch, mainly because I'm too lazy to make it in the morning, but vegetarianism forced me to be more organised.

So sandwiches were made in the morning and leftovers from dinner were put in containers for lunch. Because I'd worked the weekend before, I only worked three of the seven days during this challenge, which made things easier.

In fact it was all pretty easy, although I probably ate too much pasta and I think a microwaveable macaroni and cheese I had at work one night may have had two pieces of pig in it.

During the week I was asked by a couple of people if I'd considered doing veganism instead, for more of a challenge. The thought had crossed my mind but the simple answer was I love cheese too much.

Of course knowing I was only doing this for a week made it easier too, though I had made things interesting by making my second-to-last day the day of a barbecue for the editorial team from work.

So while everyone else was tucking into steaks, ham and sausages, I was nibbling on faux-meat quorn sausages.

To say these things tasted like cardboard would be an insult to cardboard. Luckily I filled up on an awesome potato salad that was part of the spread.

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Ironically, being a vegetarian was the easy part; it was the return to meat the next day that made me feel awful.

- Manawatu Standard

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