“Women, Weight and Etiquette” by Jill Shell (Guest Blogger)

Women, weight and etiquette by Jill Shell, Family Friendly Mommy Blog, Daddy Blog

When it comes to weight, I openly admit it; I am a little sensitive about the subject. Weight is such a personal thing and in our society, seeing a certain number on a scale or looking a certain way seemingly gives value to a person.

That’s not the way it should be, but it often appears that it is that way.

I’ve always been conscious about my own weight and have spent years being self-conscious about the way others perceive my weight, but never more does this subject come to light than when I am pregnant.

I feel it when I walk into a room and eyes immediately go to my stomach, or by the multiple comments from people evaluating how I look being pregnant. I absolutely hate it and let’s face it, if you are pregnant, it is inevitable that you are going to gain weight and watch your body morph into something different than it once was for the beauty of giving life.

So why then is it so hard for others to understand that concept as well? I’m always amazed by the things people tell me during pregnancy, and it all comes down to this . . .

The only thing you should ever say to a woman (pregnant, or not) is “You look great!”

You really have no business saying anything else about her overall appearance, specific body parts, the way she looks that day compared to any other day, or what have you. Because of the value our society places on the way a person looks, it’s really demeaning to say anything more than that.

Again, I am super sensitive about the issue and maybe it’s the hormones from pregnancy helping me to over-analyze comments, but with every comment that is not, “You look great,” comes the realization that someone was looking at me and making a judgment about my appearance.

Take for example someone told me recently that I looked great and followed it with “You look better than before.” In my heart, I know what that means (and that there is nothing negative behind it), but truly it makes me question what I looked like before. Was I really that hideous?

Also, if I pick apart and downgrade specific parts of my body, isn’t the “PC” thing to do to negate what I just said (even if you really think it is true)? I know this is my fault because I lay it out there and sabotage myself, but when I talk about how large my rear end is getting . . . the last thing I want you to do is agree with me.  I was dumbfounded when I had mentioned my growing extremities to a colleague in the hallway and about 10 minutes after I made the comment, she brought it up (out of nowhere) and agreed with me.

Really?! Did you think that was going to make me feel shiny and bright because I’ll tell you what, that had quite the opposite affect?

I admittedly am a sensitive woman when it comes to weight and appearance, but I don’t think I’m all that different from other women out there. As humans, we should want to do and say things that make others feel good about themselves and never put doubt where doubt is unnecessary.

The moral of the story is if you want to compliment a woman on how good you think she looks and shower her with a little adoration (especially at a time like pregnancy when there is a lot of doubt), simply say…

“You look great!”

And leave it at that.

Vegans Don’t Get Enough Protein and the World is Still Flat

Take a look at me in this corny picture I took yesterday using a self-timer and a tripod.

Vegans Don’t Get Enough Protein and the World is Still Flat

If you saw me, and didn’t know who I was, would you think to yourself, “I wonder if that guy is getting enough protein…”?

Chances are, you see a guy who really doesn’t have weight to lose or to gain in order to be healthy. And that’s the truth: For my age and weight, I am perfectly in the “optimal” range.

I’m 34 years old, 5’9”, and weigh around 153 pounds (I fluctuate between 148 and 155 throughout the year).

But back in 2008, I peaked at 178 pounds, which according to the chart, put me in the “overweight” category.

Vegans Don’t Get Enough Protein and the World is Still Flat

So now that we’ve established I’m not underweight, or overweight, why is it that in the past few years, people have asked me if I’m getting enough protein?

After all, that’s not something people typically ask each other:

“Are you getting enough protein?”

In fact, I challenge you to name 3 people you’ve personally known in your lifetime who weren’t getting enough protein; excluding people with eating disorders or people dying of a disease- neither of which apply to vegans like me.

My guess is you can’t think of even one person.

Yet we’re obsessed with making sure people getting enough protein. Meanwhile, the irony is that we’re getting too much protein in the form of meat, which leads to cancer and/or diabetes.

But the moment people find out I’ve been a vegan for about 2 and a half years (and a vegetarian for more than a year before that), they feel compelled to make sure I’m getting enough protein.

Why is that?

Because we’ve collectively been brainwashed to believe that without eating animal products, we will not get enough protein.

In reality, vegans easily get enough protein from 6 easy sources: veggies, fruit, nuts, seeds, beans, and grains.

And again, look at me. How am I not living proof that vegans get enough protein?

Vegans Don’t Get Enough Protein and the World is Still Flat

Granted, if all I ate was white bread and apple juice, I could see the concern. But that wouldn’t be a healthy, balanced diet. To me that’s the equivalent of someone who “experimented with veganism in college.”

However, they failed because they weren’t actually getting enough all around nutrition, instead, they depended on processed foods.

It’s simple: I eat plenty of unprocessed veggies, fruits, nuts, seeds, beans, and grains.

I don’t have a gym membership. Instead, I simply take at least two 10 minute walks each day, as well as ride my mountain bike and go for runs throughout the week.

I don’t count calories. I don’t go hungry; I eat as much as I want. No portion control.

And I’m very happy.

Plus, I’m actually healthy. At least that’s what Dr. Thomas John of Vanderbilt Primary Care told me back in April when visited him for a check-up.

He even confirmed I’m getting enough protein; though I didn’t bring up I was a vegan until after he had already told me diagnosed me as healthy.

Now consider my former life. I was more than 30 pounds heavier. I had dyshidrosis; a medically incurable skin disease related to eczema.


I had constant sinusitis, sinus pressure, headaches and acne.

Of course, now, those are all a thing of the past.

Why would I ever go back to that?


This is what works for me. It’s not for everyone. However, I’m living proof it’s not crazy, but instead it’s a quite effective lifestyle.

I feel there’s a decent chance some people glanced at the title of this post and assumed I was “finally admitting vegans don’t get enough protein.”



Actually, I’m showing how outdated it is to believe such a concept. It’s as crazy as still believing the world is flat.



Check out this video I made about what I refer to as “The Protein Conspiracy”…

Also, here’s a professional article, 8 Great Sources of Vegan Protein.

Plus, Vegetarians Can Expect to Live Longer, Study Shows.