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Wondering why led me to wonder this?

How many of you became vegetarian or vegan first as a way to become healthier?  My path has led me toward wanting to be healthier and then as I have learned more I can not ignore any more, the issues of animal cruelty.  Why it took me so long I'm not sure.  :'(
First I feel better (physically, spiritually, emotionally) as a new vegetarian than I have in years.  I am still working on eliminating dairy.  I have cut back tremendously. 
Just wondering how many of you were first focused on health or on health after your decision to become vegetarian or vegan.
At a recent cookout I was scolded for my eating choices and told I should just skip the bun and eat the burger with the cheese on top if I wanted to be healthier.  Ackkkk!!!!!!
Thanks~
Sarah

Certainly was that way for me, health issues first, though the more I have read about what is in what we eat from animals, how it is produced and the impact it has on th environment the more determined I have become to maintain this lifestyle and continue reducing the amount of animal products in my diet. I was basically vegetarian for about 15 years, then stopped the occasional pieces of fish I ate, and now have given up eggs and most dairy. I am working towards giving up animal products completely but I find for me a little at a time makes it easier.

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i just posted a long rambling post in the 'wondering why' bit, so i won't repeat it all again, lol, don't want to bore everyone twice, but in a way i did go vegetarian, and then vegan, for health reasons.
i was too little to really conciously make the decision to give up meat, but my parents definately did it for my immediate health. i gave up eggs and dairy on my own due to food intollerances, so again, for health.
i have a lot of admiration for people who can make a big step like this, and stop eating things they've always eaten, be it for ethical, or health reasons, i don't know how easy i would have found it to convert to veganism if i didn't have a direct and motivating association between my eating eggs and dairy and feeling really sick. i think it's just a little easier to quit eating something, even if it tastes good, when it punishes you physically for eating it in the first place, lol.

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I also went veggie for health reasons. I didn't have a specific
healther problem, but was feeling old (I am, perhaps, the
oldest person how regularly posts here) and wanted to feel
better. I started being a vegetarian (about 14 years ago) and
then (about 10 years ago) got rid of most dairy (and sugar) and
have gone totaly vegan for the last 5 years. Given the fact
that I am 14 years older than when I started, my skin looks
better and I have more energy. It is also easier to control
my weight. I don't know what kind of shape I would be in if
I didn't change my diet, but I know I am better off being a
vegetarian. I do believe that just 'not eating meat' is not
really that answer. I try to organize my diet to make sure I
get all the stuff need to be health.

I could say more, but at the moment I am about to fall asleep
as I had a very long day......

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Like one of the previous posters, I too just saw the thread started back in Feb and posted there. But I too am trying to get healthier. I have v. slow metabolism (low blood pressure,naturally slow heart rate, my normal body temp is about 97,5F). I too feel much happier in myself since returning to vegetaria, tho I haven't made the full switch yet, we're getting there. I feel somehow lighter, less sluggish after meals. I need to lose at least 10-15 lbs and this change seems to help.
I have learned, as someone posted somewhere, that "a calorie is a calorie" and that there is a diff between *calories* and nutrition. I started using soy milk and gained about 3 lbs on my first quart. So I sat down and thought; and of course, soy has greater *nutritional* content than cow's milk, so if I'm going to use soy products (milk, tofu etc) I have to figure that in and eat *less* of other things, or at least smaller portions!
Still feeling my way...and as I stated in another post, vegetarianism is not an establishe'd lifestyle in s. Spain. You won't find any veggie-friendly products outside specialized health food stores, and boy do they charge!! You can get tofu and tempeh at the Asian supermarket, but anything like TVP etc. is v. expensive...like $3.75 for 2 little patties!
Howe'ver I have noticed that some of the more expensive restaurants are offering vegetarian options on their menus...not that I can patronise them regularly!  :'( Let us hope that there's a brighter future in store.

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me, it was more for discipline.
kinda like a lent marathon.
i looovvvve sashimi, raw meat and the likes and my physical/spiritual/mental shape was paying for it.
cutting out protein is hard on the body (esp b/c i used to eat only 1-2 times a day), thereby requiring mental discipline so i turned vegetarian.
it felt kinda funky at first, and then my body felt/smelled clean.
But on top of draining my body of protein, i practice aikido, so it didn't work well.
i tried eating meat again but it fell heavy and had a smell to it.
so i turned vege once more, eggs and dairy gained a bitter smell, and i turned vegan  :)
my decision was a long and unconventional process.

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I become a vegetarian for health reasons at first.  Then discovered later the impract my decision had on the environment and animal welfare.  I can't really say it's been a spiritual experience for me howe'ver.  I definately physically feel better.

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