We’ve all heard of the ‘pink slime’ used to create McDonald’s chicken nuggets. But we don’t all know that it isn’t just McDonald’s or fast food which uses pink slime. It also becomes the main ingredient in many hot dogs, bologna, chicken nuggets, pepperoni, salami, jerky and many other types of processed meats. It isn’t just chicken-nugget-pasteanimal parts (notice I don’t say ‘meat’ but ‘parts’). They also treat it with ammonium hydroxide to kill the bacteria and then they add anhydrous ammonia for refrigeration purposes. They add artificial colors and flavors to make it more appealing (and more natural-looking), then cook it all up into one big chemical-laden mess.

This is why I have given up all processed meats. I don’t have any objection to the parts of the animal being used (you might as well eat the feet or the eyes or the butt if you’re eating the ribs or the shoulder; it makes no difference to me) but the machines in these places are absolutely filthy and because of this, strong chemicals must be used to sanitize the meat. I do not want to ingest these chemicals. I love hot dogs. I mean, I love them. But I haven’t had one in months and even though I want one every single day, thinking of this kind of thing makes passing them up a little easier.

I am not a vegetarian, by the way, and I do not promote vegetarianism or veganism. I think it’s great if people make that commitment and I admire the lifestyle change they have to stick to in order to keep to their ideals but I don’t think it is a wise choice to be vegan for more than a few years. We need meat and the nutrients from animal products. Too many people have gotten sick from not getting them. Vegetarianism is better for you but it’s not just not for me. I like my meat. As long as it’s natural.