How did it come to be this way? In terms of nutrition, there’s little meat has to offer that other food groups don’t. The meat industry likes to tout the high iron and B12 counts in animal protein. But iron is found in plenty of vegetables and beans, and B12 is available in dairy and eggs as well as vegan foods such as alternative dairy products and nutritional yeast. And studies regularly tout the health benefits of a vegetarian diet, connecting it to a reduced risk of heart disease, cancer, and Type 2 diabetes.

Yet the connection between manliness and meat-eating shows up everywhere in contemporary culture: in Carl’s Jr. commercials featuring a swimsuit-clad Paris Hilton, selling sex and burgers all in one go; in the pages of Men’s Health magazine; and in teasing depictions of Ron Swanson, that paragon of mustachioed masculinity, downing endless amounts of ribs, steak, bacon, and something called a meat tornado.


The upshot: Despite eating less meat, women still bear many of its costs—whether by braving dangerous work conditions in its packing plants, devoting money and time to buying and cooking it, or taking on caregiving duties as diet-related illnesses continue to rise. Meanwhile, women reap few of the $95 billion industry’s rewards.

Cholesterol Update

In 2013, two years before my heart attack, I went in for an overdue annual physical which included a lipid panel. My numbers: 231 total, HDL 54, LDL 157, triglycerides 102.

Today I got the results from a lipid panel done last Friday. My new numbers: 103 total, HDL 31, LDL 44, triglycerides 139.

I guess the combo of statins and low-fat veganism is working.

The rise in triglycerides is something I’ll need to keep an eye on, however. I know that, despite being vegan, my consumption of leafy greens has decreased — finding salads without oily dressings when eating out is nigh impossible — and that of other carbs has gone up. I’ve also not really had time to exercise; the time I once used for morning workouts is now used to get ready so I can get my son dressed, fed, and dropped at daycare in time for me to get to work.

Regardless, I’m really happy with these results.

After 2 months I noticed that I had $1000 more on my bank account. Yes, that’s a lot, but do the math and you notice it’s not that much.

I live in New York. In order to spend $1000 on alcohol I only have to spend $33 everyday. Assume that I have 2–3 cocktails every other day (which are $10 each without tip), including some wine bottles every month for at home I can easily spend $1000.

Some might think that this is heavy alcoholism, but trust me when I say that having 1–2 drinks everyday in New York is more than normal.

 Jeebus. I get twitchy just spending more than $10 for lunch when I’m at work.

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I was at a work outing yesterday and had pizza and beer for the first time in months; the beer was more alcohol than I’ve had in in toto for 2015. And I tell you, it was really good. Props to Pinstripes on East Illinois, but that Margherita pizza was some of the best pizza I’ve ever eaten.

But holy crap did I feel terrible an hour later. My joints swelled, and my chest just felt heavy; everything seemed like it took more effort. Plus, I was ungodly thirsty. I sucked down two tall glasses of diluted lemonade/orange-juice within minutes of getting home.

I’ve been vegan for the last six months and am now attempting vegan minus nuts, oil, and avocado. It’s a huge pain in the ass. However, it’s sort of nice to see what a difference it makes given a lapse like yesterday. I’m sure a lot of the effects were compounded by my heart condition, but it boggles my mind now to think that, before, I wouldn’t even hesitate to eat like that.

And those were even special occasions for me. Eating like that every day? No wonder over half a million Americans die of heart disease every year.

“We simply don’t think the evidence support any causal link between any red meat and any type of cancer,” said Shalene McNeill, executive director of human nutrition at the National Cattlemen’s Beef Association.

Follow. The. Money.

Gave this recipe a shot last night and it turned out great. Delicious and very traditionally chili-like in flavor. I even managed to successfully sauté the veggies without oil, a new thing I’m trying.

Pro tip: wear gloves when handling jalapeños. I did not and now some fingers on my right hand feel like they’ve had a brush with a belt sander.