Natalie Portman is no longer vegan, or comparing eating meat to rape

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Natalie Portman has been a vegetarian or a vegan for many, many years. She was always very vocal about it, even writing about it in a now-infamous Huffington Post essay regarding Jonathan Safran Foer’s book Eating Animals back in 2009. Natalie was criticized back then for the essay because while she defended her veganism in particular and Foer’s book in general, she took a novel approach – comparing meat-eaters to rapists. For. Real. Here’s the relevant passage:

I say that Foer’s ethical charge against animal eating is brave because not only is it unpopular, it has also been characterized as unmanly, inconsiderate, and juvenile. But he reminds us that being a man, and a human, takes more thought than just “This is tasty, and that’s why I do it.” He posits that consideration, as promoted by Michael Pollan in The Omnivore’s Dilemma, which has more to do with being polite to your tablemates than sticking to your own ideals, would be absurd if applied to any other belief (e.g., I don’t believe in rape, but if it’s what it takes to please my dinner hosts, then so be it).

[From Portman’s Huffington Post essay]

So, someone with such strong beliefs – strong enough to compare the non-vegan lifestyle to rape – should be able to stick with it even while pregnant, right? Wrong. As it turns out, while Natalie is pregnant, she’s been giving in to all of her rape fantasies about dairy:

Natalie Portman is giving into her cravings. The 29-year-old Your Highness star — who is expecting her first child with fiance Benjamin Millepied later this summer — is no longer a vegan.

“I actually went back to being vegetarian when I became pregnant, just because I felt like I wanted that stuff,” she said during a Monday phone interview with the Q100 Bert Show in Atlanta. “I was listening to my body to have eggs and dairy and that sort of stuff.”

“I know there are people who do stay vegan,” she added, “but I think you have to just be careful, watch your iron levels and your B12 levels and supplement those if there are things you might be low in in your diet.”

The Oscar-winning actress — who became a vegan in 2009 after reading Jonathan Safran Foer’s Eating Animals — doesn’t regret her decision to become a vegetarian again.
“If you’re not eating eggs, then you can’t have cookies or cake from regular bakeries, which can become a problem when that’s all you want to eat,” she laughed. “I actually wanted eggs at the beginning and then they grossed me out after awhile.”

Food cravings aside, Portman added that she doesn’t know the sex of her unborn child — and she has no plans to find out any time soon, either.

“People can say a lot of things and they have a 50 percent chance of being right,” she laughed. “I’m Jewish and I think in Judaism, there’s a lot of superstition around not doing too much before the baby comes.”

[From Us Weekly]

Look, she has every right to eat whatever she wants while pregnant (and not pregnant, for that matter). It’s good she cares more about giving in to her cravings and getting the necessary nutrients rather than trying to adhere to veganism’s limitations. And hey, it’s not like she’s actually eating meat again – she’s just given in to dairy! Still, it’s kind of funny considering what a big friggin’ deal she made about becoming a vegan. And I just love the phrase “raping dairy” now.

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Photos courtesy of WENN.

 

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136 Responses to “Natalie Portman is no longer vegan, or comparing eating meat to rape”

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  1. carrie says:

    if it’s good for the baby, it also ‘s good for her every day

    and SHE says some stupid stuff sometimes

  2. serena says:

    I do think that while pregnant one has to eat everything that is necessary to the baby. That is, even if you are a vegat or vegetarian you should assume all the nutrients for the baby’s sake even if it means to eat meat and oppose your strong beliefs.
    So I don’t find it strange at all this fact.

  3. Samigirl says:

    I was a quasi vegitarian before I got pregnant. I ate seafood like crazy, but no chicken, beef, or pork. At about 4 months, the iron pills weren’t working and I became full on carnivore. I ate 4 steaks a week. I literally craved red meat. It was gross and delicious haha. I still eat meat, but I get it from local farms that don’t add hormones to their stock :)

  4. Jackson says:

    I know there is so much NP hate around here, but I fail to see how she compared meat-eaters to rapists. That is not what she said in that essay.

    I’m glad she’s doing what she thinks is best now for her and her baby.

  5. j says:

    A lot of people change their diets while pregnant, so this is pretty normal. I was vegan through two pregnancies and had no issues (and very healthy kids), but some women don’t feel comfortable doing that.

  6. garvels says:

    ……and why does this girl get the opportunity to write for the Huffington Post??

  7. k says:

    I don’t care about what she eats; it’s the sheer hypocrisy that gets me. She was blatantly proselytizing before. It is possible to be a vegan who doesn’t preach, Nat.

    Also, can we talk about her awkward sentence structure?

  8. I just hate her these days. she can eat whatever she wants given she SHUTS UP.

  9. JustJen says:

    I have found that some of the goo that spouts out of your mouth when you are young and know everything sometimes comes back to haunt you….. In NP’s case, she’s doing it very publically. It’s amusing….

  10. Jane says:

    Haven’t read this article, but if I could guess I’d say because she’s pregnant? A lot of times the body craves what it is deficient in when pregnant. And usually vegans are deficient in those important fats and proteins and/or certain vitamin complexes. It’s actually a little less simple being vegan or vegetarian than people think. Regardless meat has fat and that is what a baby needs for sure for brain health.

  11. Rhiley says:

    I watched Black Swan this weekend and thought it was so stupid. I can’t believe Natalie Portman won the Oscar over Annette Benning. I have to say, though, Barbara Hershey was very good and should have been nominated for supporting actress. She was the highlight of the movie for me. I also watched 127 the same night and I thought that movie was very good, and as much as I hate to admit it, Franco did a great job. The music drives 127 hours though. I had the soundtrack before seeing the movie. It is fantastic and without it, I am not sure the movie would be as good.

  12. Justaposter says:

    This sounds so mean, but I am so over her!

    Now onto cravings. For me, sometimes they were so strong that I thought I would cry if I couldn’t get what I was craving at the time. Thank goodness those were few and not often.

    For me, I still crave what my body is lacking. Every month right before the PMS monster hits, I crave beef, cooked to just barely medium and eggs.

    I just really wish that a person wouldn’t try to hammer you to death with their eating styles. I would rather someone say “Hey, I just ate the best (insert whatever it was) and I thought others might enjoy (whatever) it also.

  13. Kaboom says:

    Eating eggs? That’s basically cannibalism and pedophilia wrapped up in one thing!

  14. Snarky_Pup says:

    Keep eating, Natalie. It prevents you from talking.

  15. DGO says:

    Two things: 1.) Funny how she says she’s outraged over rape but supports a pedo rapist like Polanski, and 2.) The vegan lifestyle is not good for pregnant or nursing women, no matter who tells you what.

    • Mia Roberts says:

      Actually you are wrong about that. Its a popular misconception held by people who are keen to undermine veganism. Sometimes that can be because you half know it’s the right thing to do for the animals, the planet, your children’s future but because you just can’t stop scoffing dead animals. It’s perfectly healthy to eat a vegan diet while pregnant or at any other time in your life. In fact, it’s a lot healthier than a diet rich in meat (which tends to be a high cholesterol, high fat diet). Try reading Skinny Bitch bun in the Oven for for more info.

  16. Relli says:

    @samigirl………isn’t that crazy how that works! I was a vegetarian too until i got pregnant and then all of sudden all i wanted was high fat meats and carbs, another thing i had limited myself on. I could not get enough of pancakes and bagels too! In one weekend i ate grilled chicken, ribs & chicken wings, a burger and a steak…. it was so ridiculous but clearly after 5 years of brown rice my body was calling out for something more.

  17. TQB says:

    The crap part of this is that she isn’t really caving to “dairy rape” for her health or the baby’s, but because of her cravings for cake and cookies. THAT’S what makes this hypocritical. She could have said “I struggled with my vegan philosophy but was concerned about my fetus getting the proper nutrients.”

    But no, mama just wants an f’ing cookie, so cow rape is OK for now.

  18. mia girl says:

    I agree with @Jackson, Portman did not compare eating meat to rape.
    @Kaiser – Love ya, but I think you should change the headline because as much as many don’t like her, that is not what she said. There are plenty of things to snark on this girl about without having to be hyperbolic or incorrect.

    Speaking of hyperbolic – Portman did equate holding true to vegan ideals as important as holding on to ideals such as rejection of rape. I agree that comparison is extreme and immature (something a high school student might write in an essay). It was stupid, but she did not say eating meat is rape.

  19. Kelly says:

    You guys prove the point that there are none more defensive and ugly than those who still eat meat. Whatever – it’s on your conscious.

  20. tapioca says:

    I wonder if she has any pets, because Alicia “PETA’s face of veganism” Silverstone does, and what I always find amusing is that all the hyper-militant veggies I’ve known tend to have a number of dogs/cats that aren’t exactly fed on tofu! Maybe they live on food made from special magical animals that lived on rainbows and ate candyfloss and willingly left their bodies to the puppy chow industry?
    -
    Oh, and Your Highness! was a total bomb at the box office this weekend, was it not? The curse of the Oscar winner is alive and well…

  21. Folly says:

    OT,anybody read reese vogue interview?what is wrong with most of this hollywood women,i cant believe reese said she do cry inside her car anytime she want to go out because of the lack of privacy,that coming from someone who just spread almost all her wedding photograph.

  22. N.D. says:

    @Kaboom LOL! :)

    It’s interesting how some people can’t say or do anything without coming off as self-righteous and smug. Case in point – NP, Kstew. I don’t think either is half as bad as people’s opinion about them but there’s definitelly something in their manners, in the way they express themselves that rubs people the wrong way.

  23. Samigirl says:

    I’m sorry, my computer is janky and I can’t read your name, but YES. PANCAKES! Every freaking morning at 4 am, either pancakes or macaroni and cheese. The good stuff from the box ;-) I cosign with the poster above who said they would cry sometimes over their cravings. Seriously, if I couldn’t have my steak, I would be in tears. It was absolutely ridiculous and pathetic. I’m almost 7 weeks along right now and I’m praying my soon to be hubby dearest doesn’t have to deal with all I put my ex through during my first pregnancy.

  24. JH says:

    Tapioca:

    You’re totally right, I always wonder about that too, I do know that Alicia’s dogs are vegan, but it wouldn’t surprise me if NP’s isn’t.

  25. mew mew says:

    Good thing for getting nutritiens for baby. It’s not related but I have never understood however, what nutritiens do pregnant women think cakes, pizza, hamburgers, ice cream and all that give to a baby… since many seem to be eating whatever junk and justify it with “I’m pregnant” clausule. Just wondering..

  26. joymama says:

    I was vegetarian for 10 years before I was pregnant and two months into pregnancy I really craved meat! I went out and purchased some and cooked it and like it! My husband was a little surprised but supported me.

    I tried the vegan thing for a while and developed a soy allergy. It caused horrible joint pain.

  27. SHump says:

    Isn’t it nice to be able to live our lives and change our minds about things without having tons of people judging us?

  28. Iggles says:

    “As it turns out, while Natalie is pregnant, she’s been giving in to all of her rape fantasies about dairy”

    Kaiser! You have me laughing at my desk at work! :D

    That was epically awesome.

  29. mln76 says:

    @mew mew LOL I have never been pregnant and I am not a vegetarian but it’s funny how people think nothing of eating the absolutely worst kinds of food while pregnant and then get scandalized by vegetarians and vegans who many times have a much better diet (not always because too much processed soy isn’t healthy either). I happen to have a friend who was vegan while pregnant and her daughter has been vegetarian her whole life-she’s perfectly healthy and going to start college next year.

  30. Jayna says:

    @Rhiley, I disagree. Natalie’s performance in Black Swan was flat-out amazing. She deserved the Oscar. That was a difficult part to play and not overact or underact at times. She was spot on. And the camera loves her face. The movie was interesting and I liked it. The movie isn’t for everone, though.

  31. Liana says:

    I love the comments from people who make it sound like they’re so much more enlightened as vegetarians than those who eat meat. Get off your freaking high horses. How you choose to eat is a personal choice. I choose not to eat meat. but never would I preach to someone else how or what to eat.

    • Mia Roberts says:

      How you choose to eat has such a huge impact on the world. Please, read Eating Animals by Jonathan Safron Foer which is the book Natalie read and commented on in the Huffington Post. Vegans think they are enlightened because they are – they realise how important their food choices really are.

  32. baby says:

    her harvard educated writing skills aren’t so impressive if u ask me..

  33. Jayna says:

    I once quit eating beef for two years. Not because of any beliefs. It just repulsed me to think of eating it. One day I went to a restaurant with my boyfriend, and we didn’t realize it was a steak only place. I refused to eat it, and my boyfriend told me to get over it and order something. I did. And I fell in love with steak all over again. I still couldn’t eat hamburger meat and such, but steak I crave every so often.

  34. Truthzbetta says:

    The picture of her and Ballet K-Fed wearing all black cracks me up.

    They look so small and attention whorey. All black makes them such NY artistes, yeah.

  35. truetalk says:

    now ladies,play nice!lol

  36. orion70 says:

    @tapioca, not all vegans and vegetarians make everyone in their household follow the same diet, that includes animals. I’m the live and let live type when it comes to what people eat, I’ve even cooked meat-centric dinners for guests at my home. That said, my dog didn’t choose vegetarianism, so just speaking for myself, her diet focuses on animal proteins plus a few other things thrown in . Humans are omnivores, they can eat the diet and be fine, not all animals can, as carnivores. From what I hear, a veg diet is particularly harmful to cats.

    I kind of subscribe to the same viewpoint about pregnancy, if a doctor really pressed it, I would introduce more animal proteins.

    I don’t think people should be so quick to chalk it up to “your body is asking for what it needs”. Pregnant women have wild cravings, they’re just that, cravings.

  37. Ruby Red Lips says:

    So what? Everyone’s opinions change over time, she probably felt really passionate about it then, but her life has changed

    We all do this,its just that our opinions aren’t published and immortalised in print like celebs.

    Lay off Natalie!!

  38. Cheyenne says:

    Ah, food cravings… I had a craving for V-8 vegetable juice which I never drank before. I drank that stuff by the gallon when I was pregnant.

    Also, all of a sudden I couldn’t stand the smell of cooked vegetables so I ate tons of salad — lettuce, tomatoes, cucumbers, and green and red peppers. Delicious.

    Listen to your body while you’re pregnant. It will tell you what you need.

    @Kelly: I eat all the meat and fish I please without any concern whatsoever for hypocrites like you who scream about animal rights while you’re stomping around in your leather shoes.

  39. Bunnywabba says:

    She is an idiot. Btw the healthiest people in the world live vilcabamba, ecuador. 1 in 60 live to be 100 as oppsed to 1 in 1.8 million americans who live to be 100. They don’t get cancer or heart disease either and their cells look 40 years younger than their age so keep telling yourselves vegans are f’in stupid and unhealthy. Being a vegan is very healthy as long as you aren’t eating junk vegan food like oreos,french fries and soy burgers. Cow’s milk is truly disgusting and i cannot believe she went back. Blood, pus, feces, 59 naturally occuring hormones, allergens…yum! Oh and comparing eating meat to rape is completely outrageous. The idea that being vegan during pregnancy is dangerous is completely ignorant.

  40. viper says:

    Can she ever not use her Jewish status? There is just not one article or interview where she’s not exploiting her religion – and yet she has done things that are morally unethical in that religion. If she’s proud of being of that religion then why isn’t she practicing it? Most of her movies she’s absolutely naked in, she’s done more men than Angelina Jolie and she’s had a baby outside of wedlock. Doesn’t matter if she’s going to get married they whole point is to abstain until then but hey those are just semantics. Then to add more insult to that religion she lives a very egotistical and superficial existence. She contributes nothing to society as a whole – so I don’t see how she’s Jewish. She’s just an opportunist who disgraces the good faith of Judaism. I find her deplorable and a vile retched hypocritical whore.

    I still cannot believe shes deluded herself into thinking shes an intelligent. What an idiot.

  41. Erin says:

    @Tapioca – I am vegan and my pets eat meat. So does my husband. I don’t force him to eat vegan (or anyone else) and for me it would be going against my pet’s nature and health requirements to feed them a vegan diet. That doesn’t make me a hypocrite, it means I make decisions for myself and don’t force them on anyone else. Give me a break.

  42. Rita says:

    God, will we ever get over this personal choice of sexual orientation and what is with all this “rape fantacy” business? Now that she’s been impregnated by a man, I can understand her reluctance to maintain a vadgetarian lifestyle but that’s her choice, as long as she doesn’t force it on me or anyone else.

  43. viper says:

    I loath people who bash vegis for being hypocritical because they wear shoes. By their asinine logic we shouldn’t be using toilets either! Hell lets go a step further and never wear period pads, or shower, or hell what are the means we use to use the internet? lets stop doing that shit too! I mean WOW shoes! They leather used AFTER the animal had been killed for its meat, the leather is used instead of just tossed – a form of recycling is it not? So whose the hypocrite? the veggi eating shoe wearer or the meat eating numb skull? Either way you both are idiots!

  44. ms. lisa says:

    She talks about NOT finding out the sex of her child because of her religious beliefs, which is fine and all, but what about getting knocked up before marriage??

  45. viper says:

    I say to please both sides we all walk around butt naked with bricks for shoes. For those who live up north – tough shit you freeze to death but hey the cows are jolly in the field so you can drop dead with your conscience clear!

  46. original kate says:

    meh. i have a friend who is vegetarian & jewish, but both times she was pregnant she craved tuna and bacon, and ate them. then she went back to being vegetarian/kosher after the kids were born. i also have a friend who craved instant coffee, and my sister craved marshmallows.

    ugh – those cravings must be a bitch. give the preggo a break.

  47. viper says:

    I knew a mother to be with high cholesterol and she started craving eggs and fried foods so I said ‘ you’re craving fetus to feed your fetus and decomposed fried flesh. ‘ she was instantly grossed out stopped craving those. I put her on a good crave fighting diet and has thus given birth to a healthy 12 pound baby boy – and retains her figure. Also her child wasn’t born with high cholesterol – which was the point.

  48. kristin says:

    for the last time… SHE did not make that comparison to rape, Michael Pollan did in The Omnivore’s Dilemma. On page 310: “Murder and rape are natural too.”

  49. mln76 says:

    @viper I know vegans who buy non leather vegan friendly shoes they aren’t hard to find. I have to say some of the fervor against vegans and vegetarians have been brought on by the militant and aggressive vegans themselves especially the epically hypocritical PETA. The fact is not everyone wants to stop eating meat and there are ways to make farming more ethical and the meat industry more healthy for everyone. Michael Pollan’s (who is mentioned in the blurb above) belief system is much more viable to the general public and would do more to sanction debate and get more people to reduce their meat intake and treat animals with less cruelty.

    Also there are other options that people who are so inclined used for their periods called ‘the keeper’ I am not going to describe it it’s too gross.

  50. Cheyenne says:

    @viper: That’s the most specious argument I ever heard. Do you know how many animals per year are killed FOR THEIR HIDES?? Coats, hats, shoes, wallets, bags, you name it. Don’t be walking around in your leather shoes criticizing people who eat meat. If you can eat ‘em, you can wear ‘em.

    ______________________________________________________

    @Original Kate: I know Conservative and Orthodox Jews aren’t supposed to eat shellfish, but I don’t think they have a prohibition on tuna.

  51. N.D. says:

    @Bunnywabba What life expectation for inhabitants of vilcabamba, ecuador has to do with being vegetarian vs eating meat argument? It’s not like people there are all vegans. Nobody even knows for sure what makes them live longer. Could be because of the water or climat or peaceful life or extra anti-oxidants in their food or all of the above or something else altogether.

  52. moon says:

    So many people are so unaware of the bountiful nutrients in Legumes, people you don’t have to meat to get enough iron. Vegetables and the aforementioned legumes provide pretty much ALL the nutrients a human body requires. When my son was a child many of my friends strongly suggested that I was starving him and that he was low on iron, I took him to a Dr. who ran his blood work (& mine),both of us were very healthy and guess what, we both had excellent levels of iron. My son is now a 26 yr old man, lean, strong & healthy. I believe a diet rich in veggies, legumes
    and whole grains is truly the healthiest, too many people are ignorant when it comes to legumes. Living close to the USA border I often shop in USA, and though many food prices are lower than the Canadian prices, it’s obvious to me why the Americans have such a big problem with obesity (Canada as well), but in the States it seems harder to find “clean” food, they use a lot more additives than what is found in Canadian food and I have learned that “labeling” in the States is vague. I thought to buy a turkey last American Thanksgiving, I couldn’t find one that hadn’t been infused with additives, obviously I didn’t buy it and served my parents a tasty vegetarian meal instead. Apologies for my expatiation.

  53. original kate says:

    “I know Conservative and Orthodox Jews aren’t supposed to eat shellfish, but I don’t think they have a prohibition on tuna. ”

    @ cheyenne: they prohibit pork, not tuna. as a jew who had never eaten pork my friend felt very guilty about eating bacon but the cravings won in the end.

  54. moon says:

    @ Viper
    I agree with you, too many times after being lectured by a vegan I looked at her shoes and yes they were leather. I will wear only leather or canvas shoes and I have a leather couch and I’m a vegetarian. What a person eats is truly personal. I don’t eat meat because it doesn’t “agree” with me, but I haven’t any issues cooking meat for other people nor do I have any issue with anyone who chooses to eat junk, just don’t complain to me about how squishy you are or how crappy you feel.

  55. I’ve been a vegetarian since I was 15. I guess you can call it teenage rebellion as much as anything else – I didn’t drink or smoke as a kid, so declaring myself “cruelty free” in rural Wisconsin was my stand. And like any good teenaged rebellion, I was self-righteous about it. Being somewhat of a novelty, I revelled in my self-imposed “difference”, and even convinced a few girlfriends of the moral superiority of going veg.

    It wasn’t until a few years later, when I went off to college and met a slew of “first year” vegetarians and vegans, that I truly understood the absurdity of getting into a pissing contest over one’s dietary beliefs. I was at a work shop my first few weeks of school helping some girls in our dorm who want to willingly “convert” to vegetarianism. Mostly just a meet and greet – the whole thing had a very innocent, non-threatening, “let’s make friends with people who have similar interests to us” type- vibe to it. Suddenly, a very arrogant, aggressive, women’s study major snarled at me and said, “Oh! So you don’t condone murder, but you’re OK with rape?!?”.

    I decided right then and there it wasn’t anybody’s business what I crammed in my cramhole, and vice versa.

    In the years following, I’ve reevaluated my small-town, white(brain)washed Lutheran morality to extend my “none of my business” philosophy to include pretty much any conceivable sort of foreign substances one could ever hope to possibly put in one’s body – but that’s a story for another day. The point being, it took age and something beyond myself to realize what a juvenile jerk-off I was, and I hope the same rings true for Natalie.

  56. N.D. says:

    @moon people you don’t have to meat to get enough iron

    But you do need to eat dairy products to get B12. There isn’t other natural food that can supply us with this vitamin.

  57. mln76 says:

    @viper oh and BTW Unfortunately meat cows and leather cows are separate entities.

  58. Ron says:

    My sister had been vegetarian for I’d say 10 years. Then went hard core vegan, which drove me nuts. I mean every meal that she was at had to be planned around her or she’s just sit at the table with an empty plate. And she was militant about telling you how awful meat and dairy were etc etc. Now she’s back to being vegetarian, I think people try vegan or raw diet on and do it for a a couple fo years until they are so hungry they can;t deal anymore and fly into a baked good tizzy fit.

  59. krissy says:

    @ N.D. It’s called nutritional yeast

  60. N.D. says:

    @krissy It does NOT contain b12 unless it’s fortified with it. You can as well take vitamin pills. Again, there is no other NATURAL food that provides b12 but dairy products.

  61. Venus says:

    Well, I remember Ballet KFed bragging about cooking her a roast chicken before the Oscars, so I don’t think she is just eating diary again.
    The worrying about nutrients is a bunch of bs — you can get all the nutrients you need while pregnant without eating cookies from a regular bakery. Her “strong beliefs” are obviously subject to her whims. She’s only *admitting* to eating diary now because some paps must have gotten a shot of her eating it. She strikes me as that kind of hypocrite — say one thing in public, do another in private.
    Finally, anyone who compares eating meat to rape should never be taken seriously. And, although the analogy wasn’t her original idea, she adopted it & wrote in support of it. So that means she compared eating meat to rape.

  62. Bill Hicks is God says:

    I don’t think Portman has a clue who she is to be honest.

  63. Raven Sparrow says:

    My understanding is that you can not be vegan without taking extra vitamins to cover what you’re body needs therfore it is not natural for the body to be vegan.

    Also an egg isn’t automatically a “fetus”. Most eggs are unfertilized. And a hen will naturally lay eggs during her life (even when not forced into producing). Kind of like women with their periods, every month an egg drops. So what is wrong with eating them?

    Another question to all the vegetarians out there and I totally respect your decision : Are you vegetarian for yourself or for the sake of the animals killed for meat? And if for the animals sake, do you eat fish? Because then that wouldn’t make any sense either. So from what I understand there are two types of beliefs : diet and animal welfare.

  64. Alice says:

    Can we have a Natalie Portman blackout?

  65. Ruby Red Lips says:

    Live and let live, FFS!!

  66. Zelda says:

    @viper
    ??????
    You think it’s okay to wear an animal but not to eat it?

    Frankly, I rather someone eat me than wear my skin around.And I am saying this as a leather-loving meat eater.

    Everybody has a right to their belief system. Except hypocrites because they are self-serving dickwads.

    That said, Natalie Portman is hardly the first person to refine or even downgrade their extreme POV on an issue with age. I think this in particular is just a case of perspective shifting with age. And thank God it does. Otherwise I’d still be dating a weed dealer and voting for my local Green Party Candidate.

  67. aria says:

    I’m vegetarian and I’ve been one since I were 10. I haven’t been pregnant yet but when the time comes, I will have to start eating some sort of meat: fish and chicken for sure.

    On the other hand,my husband usually eats meat and I never gave him any lecture about his eating habits. If he wants to be a vegetarian, it’s his choise not mine.

    Anyway, the rape thing was just out of place. Natalie should keep her mouth shut more often because not all time smart things came out from it.

  68. benny says:

    I don’t care for her personality, but she’s smart. She did what was healthy for herself (vegan), and now what’s healthy for her pregnancy (adding eggs and dairy). More Americans should regulate what they eat – we’d all be healthier as a nation.

  69. lila says:

    Ugh I don’t care what she eats. I would rather get my information from a nutritionist or doctor than some random actress. NP seriously needs to shut up.

    @Kelly I don’t think you are going to convert anyone to vegetarianism with misspelled threats. Its conscience, not conscious. Chill out.

  70. KJ says:

    Ugh, I hate having to come in here and defend Natalie Portman because her pretentiousness is really wearing on my patience, but I’m gonna have to agree with the three people who can actually read and have pointed out that she DID NOT make a direct comparison between eating meat and rape. If we really want to get picky, you could say she compared SERVING meat to guests with CONDONING rape, but even that is a poor reading of what she said. Her point is this – you shouldn’t have to do something you personally consider immoral (for whatever reason) simply because it preserves decorum (ie. it’s what your dinner guests would want). I’m really tired of this “comparing eating meat to rape” thing because it’s so clearly a piss poor reading of an already troubled analogy. Can we just move on from it instead of perpetuate the idea further?

    Also, as far as her remarks re: Judaism and the baby – you can speak about being Jewish in a religious sense as well as in a cultural sense. Like it or not, Natalie Portman/Hershlag is culturally Jewish. She has Jewish parents, is familiar with the customs, and regardless of whether or not she reads from the Torah at temple on the Sabbath, she’s still a Jew. And superstitions about pregnancy and babies is more culturally Jewish than it is religious. It’s a nuanced interpretation but let’s not act like those of us who who grew up in a certain religion but don’t strictly follow it now don’t ALSO pick and choose what parts of our religious upbringings we want to adhere to. That’s just hypocritical and splitting hairs.

  71. jane16 says:

    She is such a pompous ass. I also can’t stand her movies. I recently read an amazing book called the Vegetarian Myth, written by a woman who was a vegan for 20 years and destroyed her health and bones. Soy, the mainstay of most vegan diets, leaches minerals from the bones. Unless soy is fermented (soy sauce, miso) it is actually quite unhealthy. Furthermore, the massive soy, and other grains essential for a vegan/vegetarian diet, crops kill billions of small animals every growing season. Their habitat is destroyed, they are chopped up by those giant farming machines, etc. A lot of cute little bunnies had to die to make that soy burger.

  72. Steve says:

    Natalie is new to being vegan and it can be hard at first especially when she is so hormonal from pregnancy. She will probably do it again someday. Give her a break.

    Vegans have healthy babies all the time, vegan babies are no more likely to suffer from any problems than any other babies.

    And pregnancy cravings correspond to a ton of carbs, fat, oddities, and childhood comfort foods… It has absolutely nothing to do with what she ‘needs’. You don’t ‘need’ dairy or eggs anytime in your life.

    But I am sure this bit of hypocrisy from one animal advocate/celebrity will make a lot of people feel better about the actions they take against animals when they purchase animal products, which is DEPRESSING to see.

  73. jane16 says:

    Babies definitely need a lot of fat, including saturated fat, for brain development.

  74. Solveig says:

    Maybe I have some reading comprehension issues due to the fact that English is not my first language, but I don’t read Natalie’s words as a comparision between eating meat and rape.
    I’m vegetarian, not vegan, so I speak on my own experience. I do not eat eggs and dairy produced by food industries because of the way eggs and dairy are being produced. I buy only milk, dairy and eggs that come from organic factories (or whatever their name is). The eggs we eat aren’t fecundated, they are similar to the egg we expell during our period (sorry if I made you puke). The cruelty behind the production of eggs is the way chicken are treated: they spent their entire life inside cages of 20cm per side. The other cruelty is that the roosters – that can’t product eggs – are literally minced alive and used to produce the animal food that probably goes to feed the chickens themselves (you can find a video on youtube about this procedure, but I warn you, is atrocious).
    As for the ones who say that vegans are hypocrites and sanctimonious, well, for what I read in this thred the hypocrites and sanctimonious here are the ones who are constantly judging the way other people live.
    And finally, as far as I try I’m well aware that I can’t be completely environmentally friendly, but I TRY to do my best and that DOESN’T make me a hypocrite.

  75. The Bobster says:

    Like the pregnant vegan Phoebe Buffet, she craves meat. Maybe she can get Joey to give up his meat in the meantime.

  76. YAY says:

    Moderation is KEY to healthy eating. Why does it have to be all or nothing with some people? You can eat meat, legumes, veggies, fruit etc..just eat proper portions. Or eat whatever you like! It’s up to you!!

    I swear, people love to give their opinions on how EVERYONE should eat. This just proves that opinions really are like a$$holes..

  77. moon says:

    Wow, I am marveled by the many comments this little Natalie Portman blurb has inspired. Yes I have stated that I am a vegetarian and that our bodies don’t need meat for iron, however I did not state that I do not consume diary. @ ND thanx for the input,but where in my comment did you read that I didn’t consume dairy and get the necessary daily requirement of B12, maybe you need more carrots in your diet, my Dad always told me they improve your eye-sight.

  78. ol cranky says:

    why such a brouhaha over her no longer being vegan now that she’s pregnant? She didn’t require a vegan meal when she was the guest judge on top chef – I believe she was served dairy and there may have been some eggs used as well. I think it would have been more of a challenge to the chefs had they kept it to vegan and was surprised it wasn’t (and Portman’s friggen hypocrisy since it was OK to be ovo/lacto for a reality show contest meal).

    As for B12, you can get that from mushrooms (b vitamins are the reason I eat mushrooms pretty much daily – and I still use a supplement).

  79. wunderkindt says:

    ‘Sniveling White Bread’ Portman is such an idiot.

  80. Liana says:

    Another question to all the vegetarians out there and I totally respect your decision : Are you vegetarian for yourself or for the sake of the animals killed for meat?

    *********

    I’m a vegetarian (since childhood) because I was raised as one (my birth vessel had no problem with drugs or sex for money, but God forbid she eat meat) and because I don’t particularly care for meat. My husband is a carnivore. I simply cook things that can stand alone without meat or have meat added and he grills his meat and I have mine plain. I don’t lecture.

  81. Bodhi says:

    @ Steve ~ Natalie is not new to being a vegan, she has been one for years & years.

    Some people really do NEED animal proteins. I know several people who have tried to go veggie & did it the correct way (not just loading up on junky carbs & whatnot) & got very VERY sick becuase of it. My dad tried several times to go veggie & he was almost hospitalized becuase he was not getting enough protein.

    For God’s sake, its a CHOICE & people are allowed to change their minds about their choices

  82. Lisa says:

    Since when do eggs equal “dairy”? They come from chickens and are really just animal fetuses. I’m not a vegetarian or vegan and I eat eggs and meat all the time, but I’m also not suffering from any illusions about what exactly I am eating.

  83. Erin says:

    Boo! @Jane16! That argument is bogus. You cannot guarantee that a million animals were killed for every grain harvest. If any animals were, it is not an absolute, nor is it intentional. However, if you choose to eat meat, I guaratee you that animal died and that it was intentional, also the TONS of grain required to feed that animal (waaaay more than one lil vegan eats) would contribute vastly more to the problem you speak of, not to mention the grains you eat personally. I don’t give a rat’s patootie what you eat. It’s not my problem. But don’t throw out garbage info to make your pointless argument either.

  84. Bodhi says:

    @ Lisa ~ The eggs people eat are unfertilized & are therefore NOT fetuses. They would only be fetuses if they were fertilized

  85. Solveig says:

    @Bodhi, those people didn’t eat properly. Legumes proteins are very different from meat proteins, it’s true, but there’s a way you can get proteins similar to the meat’s ones: to eat legumes and cereals in the same meal. Especially chickpeas and barleycorn and/or wheat.
    If one starts being vegetarian or vegan it’s better to go to a dietist and check the blood levels every once in a while to see if the diet is correct.

  86. jane16 says:

    I wonder how many healthy pregnancies Steve has experienced in his lifetime. My next door neighbor is an ob/gyn. She is completely against a vegan diet for pregnant women and says it is cruel to a baby to deprive it of the proteins and fats it needs for healthy development. She says she tries to counsel her vegan patients to bump up to at least vegetarian, and that all of the vegan babies she delivers are too small and or have problems from the vegan mothers blood sugar being too high. Most people in this country have access to free range, natural eggs btw. Steve is also wrong about a pregnant womans cravings. We often crave meat if we’re low in iron and dairy for the calcium. Having been pregnant 3 times, Steve, I can tell you I didn’t indulge in any cookies or cakes or other “comfort foods”. I ate for the health of my children and white flour and sugar don’t make healthy babies.

  87. Raven Sparrow says:

    @Liana , thanks for sharing. I love your attitude and though I’m not a vegetarian, I respect every person’s choice. :)

    @Solveig , like you I try my best to trace my food. Eggs, milk and meat…I get them organic and make sure of the source and double check the labels and reputation. I also buy my fruits and veggies from local producers even if it means going a season without a certain food.

  88. jane16 says:

    There are lots of ranches that breed grass fed, free range beef. The grain industry doesn’t just chop up bunnies and other small critters, it plows over entire ecosystems, birds, fish, reptiles, all kinds of animal life are destroyed for the grain fields, which take up a huge part of our country. More critically, the way the big corporate grain farmers grow, they are destroying the topsoil, an essential that is being destroyed the world over. When the topsoil is gone, billions will starve to death. The point of the book The Vegetarian Myth, is that the healthiest way of life is to eat locally produced food from small farms. Read the book, its brilliant. Corporate big ag is going to be the death of us all, and the planet.

  89. N.D. says:

    @moon: thanx for the input,but where in my comment did you read that I didn’t consume dairy and get the necessary daily requirement of B12

    I wasn’t talking about you personally anymore than you were talking about me personaly with your “you don’t have to eat meat to get enough iron”. But thanks for your advise about those wholesome carrots nonetheless :D

  90. N.D. says:

    @ol cranky: As for B12, you can get that from mushrooms

    Here is the quote from vegan nutritionist:

    >>>>
    While algae and other sea vegetablessea vegetables do contain vitamin B12, they contain a mix of both true B12 and B12 analogs. These analogs are not active forms, and can displace B12 in the body, which is bad news because it can lead to a shortage of true B12. When seaweeds are dried, some of the true B12 changes into analogs. At present, experts advise that you do not rely on sea vegetables or algae as a source of B12. Mushrooms are not a reliable source of B12. The only reliable sources for vegans are fortified foods such as Red Star Nutritional Yeast (vegetarian support formula), fortified non-dairy milks, cereals, nutrition bars, meat analogs (check labels), and supplements. To get sufficient vitamin B12 from fortified foods, aim for 3 mcg of B12 in two or more servings of foods. To get sufficient B12 from supplements you will need 10 mcg a day or 2000 mcg a week.
    >>>>

  91. moon says:

    @ #82 “Liana”
    Just thought I’d answer a few people with the same question. I am a vegetarian because meat, particularly beef simply does not agree with my system. As a kid in England my British parents went through “stages” and for a time imposed vegetarianism on their kids. My Mum would make really strange and unpleasant dishes that would just GAG us kids, she’s a real cook-book cook, not one to just whip up supper with what’s on hand. Yet when we went to other relatives for dinner or out to friends we had to eat whatever was served to us, including almost raw, bleeding steak. My Great Aunt in particular was very strict and it was completely unacceptable to refuse to eat anything that she cooked. (The British family I grew up in was very strict)By the time we came to Canada we were eating meat again, but even as a child beef was hard for me to get down and once down caused me a great deal of abdominal pain, good lean ground beef seemed easier for me to digest and as a teen loved a juicy beef, bacon and cheddar burger. However, as a single parent (My American husband ditched my son and I for a babe in a bikini,something I still refuse to wear, again the reason is personal and I hold no judgment against women that are comfortable exposing themselves)I couldn’t afford to serve meat throughout the week, gradually as my son grew and developed his own taste, he too, did not care for the chewing aspect of eating meat, gradually I made more and more of our meals with beans and other legumes. I love beans, I cook all different types myself, with ease. Cooked properly these foods do not create the unwanted flatulence that so many people believe comes with the consumption of. If I were to eat meat today it would wreak havoc on my system and give me unwanted gas and pain. So I eat beans because I like them a whole lot more than meat, you can replace meat with lentils and beans in most any recipe. I seldom eat soy products, I really dislike tofu and the assumption that because I don’t eat meat that I must consume mass quantities of tofu. I am quite healthy and so is my grown son. I am 47 and have the muscle mass of a much younger person, I do cycle and stick to a simple exercise routine, but I keep the weight that I lift quite low because I have a muscular build and do not want to make my muscle mass larger, rather more reps for a toned body. I’d like to add that I love animals and respect them and the planet, however I recognise that humans have been meat-eaters for a very,very long time. These days we do seem to have at times too many options, and many people wouldn’t have a clue about surviving without daily trips to the butcher, the baker and 7eleven. However dried beans in your pantry and a few garden veggies will keep you quite healthy and sustain life for quite a time, along with fresh water of course.
    I wear leather shoes and boots, canvas shoes sometimes in the summer, I NEVER wear man-made faux leather or vinyl because I believe it is not good for your feet to be suffocated in plastic. I always was sure to purchase leather shoes for my son, despite the added cost, neither of us has ever had a problem with foot odour, as well I have a leather couch. Recently I stripped the leather off of a leather couch an acquaintance was throwing out, being a designer and competent seamstress, I shall recycle that leather into an awesome leather bag for myself and quite probably a few items that I will then sell.

  92. DGO says:

    @mew mew – The reason why many pregnant women crave junk food is because of its high fat content. Fat is necessary for proper brain development of the growing baby. Mothers who often follow low fat diets wind up with children with ADD and other neurological impairments.

    To Bunnywabba – Those people eat fish and monkey.

  93. gabs says:

    If she hadnt made such a big deal about it I wouldnt care but god she was obnoxious about the vegan thing back then. UGH

  94. Chris says:

    Jonathan Safran Foer’s Eating Animals is a great book. I can’t recommend it highly enough.

  95. Erin says:

    Here is actual information about the whole “animals killed during crop harvest” debate. This is about the scientist who initially did the faulty study. I’m not trying to convince you of anything, and I support everyone in their choices, but the argument that vegans somehow kill more animals is still, as I said before, bogus:

    Steven Davis, a professor of animal science at Oregon State University, argues that the least harm principle does not require giving up all meat. Davis states that a diet containing beef from grass-fed ruminants such as cattle would kill fewer animals than a vegetarian diet particularly when one takes into account animals killed by agriculture.[13] This conclusion has been criticized as flawed since it calculates the number of animals killed per acre (instead of per consumer). When his numbers are changed, Davis’ argument ends up showing veganism as perpetrating the least harm.[14] Additionally, his argument has been criticized for being based on only two studies that may not represent commercial agricultural practices. Larger number of studies again show veganism to do the “least harm.”[1]

  96. Cleo says:

    The Chinese are the same way so prebirth baby showers and shopping is a no-no – it’s a traditon based on logic – in the event of a miscarriage, the sight of all those baby things would make the loss worse – anyone see Hanley Waters episode of Criminal Minds. She looks great and her husband looks like a cross between Romain Duris, Jason Patric and Justin Theroux. INTEReSTING.

  97. moon says:

    I’m having a dull day and am finding these comments interesting, some amusing. I’m wondering #97 Chris…… is that a cookbook you’re recommending, maybe I could buy one for my Mum, she’s eating meat this decade, and she loves leather shoes, her nick-name is “Imelda”.

    @ND. how does a person fit that smiley face into a comment. Glad you’re not offended I just hope you like carrots :)

    Oh, look at that, I learned on my own!

  98. I Choose Me says:

    *scans thread. backs out*

    Oh and well said KJ. Well said.

  99. Enny says:

    @ mew mew
    When I was pregnant, I had hyperemesis and could literally eat only donuts, cookies and white bread for weeks at a time – these things are easy to digest and less likely to come back up violently upon ingestion. If I hadn’t eaten those things, baby and I both would have starved. Of course, eating fruits and veggies and lean meats is best when pregnant, but I couldn’t eat fruit the whole time – too acidic. I ate fortified cereals, etc. when I could to get nutrients, and yogurt if I could tolerate it that day. I did the best I could under the circumstances. Most pregnant ladies do. The baby is perfectly healthy, by the way. Try not to be so judgmental, you can’t understand it until you’ve been there.

  100. Shoe_Lover says:

    @ Raven Sparrow…..I will try to answer your question as best I can but I can only speak from my own experiences. I also would like to preface this by saying I am not trying to impose my beliefs upon anyone as I thinks it best if people come to these sorts of things on their own instead of being forced. I personally feel that the reasons vegetarians and especially vegans get so much flack is because of the often militant preaching that certain animal welfare organisations and their followers are know for.
    I am mostly vegan- I say mostly vegan because I do eat eggs but only eggs that come from my own chickens who I know are not treated cruelly and live a lovely free range life. When they eventually stop laying they wont be killed for their meat they will just keep living they way they have been.
    I’ll start with your egg question first- most vegans take issue with eating eggs because of the deplorable living conditions the chickens endure. they are crammed into tiny tiny cages that they cant even move in and a lot of times their beaks are removed and a feeding tube shoved down their throat. when the chickens that are breed for egg laying are born the male chicks, as they have no use in egg laying, are thrown into meat grinders, often alive. While you can buy free range eggs you cant always be sure that they really are free range or what the company is interpreting free range as. Barn laid are bad also because they often just cram hundreds of chickens in a barn and they still have barely any room.
    as to the meat question I don’t eat meat for myself and for the welfare of the animals. I don’t like meat very much at all and would do what I could to get out of it as a child it also effects me quite badly. now its a taste and moral issue for me. I love seafood but I once saw a video of an octopus in the waters off Bali (I think it was Bali) collecting broken coconut shells to make a hidey hole for itself and I decided I could never eat anything that intelligent so seafood is also out. I also saw a documentary about fish and they are a lot smarter then we would think they are. I mean look at dolphins and whales- they are super intelligent. Pigs are also intelligent and have the equivalent intelligence of a three year old child. Some people like to say that the animals are breed for it so you shouldn’t worry about it but that doesn’t mean they cant be scared and feel pain. what would you do if an alien race started breeding humans for food- people wouldn’t like that at all.

    To the people that said that if you wear leather but don’t eat meat you are a hypocrite that isn’t entirely accurate. if you don’t eat meat but wear fur you are most definitely a hypocrite because fur isn’t a by product of the meat industry. these animals are raised and killed for nothing more than their fur and their flesh is wasted- they are killed for nothing more than human vanity. But leather- 9 times out of 10 no animals are killed solely to make leather. leather is a by product of the meat industry. if that leather wasn’t used to make footwear and bags and all that junk then it would pollute and destroy the world. I am a vegan but I am also an environmentalist so I will continue to wear leather shoes and use up the leftover leather until people no longer eat meat and is no leather by product. I don’t have leather couches because I don’t really like them.

  101. moon says:

    @ #101 “Chris”

    Thank-you very much for sharing your awareness of such an interesting book, I think I’ll buy everyone I know a copy, in the least encourage them to read my copy. I read a generous section of it on one site, brilliant. Thanks again, I hope more people leaving comments have read many of the opinions expressed about this particular post/subject and “google” this book as well, instead of simply posting their own opinion.

  102. Not someone who supports celebs, but... says:

    You state that Ms. Portman compared eating meat to rape. The primary source you list does not say this. The essay as written has more to do with group behavior dynamics.

    In a famous psychology study, subjects were informed that they could electro-shock a human in the next room over, of whom they would also ask questions. At the instigation of the testers, who acted like Nazis, these innocent parties (who knew the limits of how much juice they were administering, of which a 10 was a near-lethal dose [supposedly]), most subjects would hit at least an 8 before stopping.

    What Ms. Portman was attempting to say was that eating meat because of expectations is silly. One would not rape someone because they were expected, out of politeness, to do so. You will if there’s a gun pointed at your head (as Rwanda showed us in ’94), but otherwise the point seems to make a candid, if absurd, leap.

    Sorry for the length. Just seemed to be an unfair comparison.

  103. lin234 says:

    lol I’m not sure why people get into such a tizzy when it comes to personal preference. I’m a vegetarian because for some reason, I’ve always disliked meat since I was a kid. On the other hand, my brother is the complete opposite.

    My Asian mother never catered to me growing up. A typical Chinese meal usually consists of a few dishes with meat and vegetables combined so I would just pick around what I wanted. Sometimes my brother would give me his veggies and I would give him my meat during meals. Perhaps as a result, I’m very tolerant about what people choose as their dietary preference.

    As I got older and had more control of food I could buy, I naturally opted to be a vegetarian as it’s what I always preferred.

    Perhaps people are also the missing the obvious point to this whole vegan debate when it comes to NP. I think it has less to do with beliefs as it has more to do with her maintaining her being a size 0 with very low body fat. Now that she’s pregnant, it one of the few times in Hollywood where an actress is allowed to gain weight. So cookies and cake are all on the table during this window. But after she’s given birth, I believe she’ll go back to her previous habits.

  104. Samigirl says:

    @Liana, although I eat meat now, I originally stopped not because I think eating animals is wrong, but because of all the growth hormones injected into meat. I stopped eating meat to get away from all of that crap! Now, as I mentioned earlier, I eat free range eggs, and there is a local farm about 10 miles away from my house. I buy our chicken, ground beef, and bacon from him. It makes me feel better knowing I don’t feed my son unnecessary antibiotics via “chicken breasts with rib meat added” that I could buy at the local grocery store (WTH IS that about, anyways?!) So, yes, I became a vegetarian because of the icky stuff injected in meat, not because I think eating animals is gross. (That being said, I can’t turn my son down whenever he turns his big blue eyes on me and asks for pizza or a happy meal. More often than not, we eat our clean meat!)

  105. TaylorB says:

    Slovig wrote: “The eggs we eat aren’t fecundated…”

    Fecundity isn’t exctly what you think in fowl. Hens lay eggs constantly, without mating. Fertilizing makes a chick, laying eggs alone makes an omelette. But to be fair, just being ‘organic’ has nothing what so ever to do with when eggs are collected or if they are ‘funducated’. Very few people who sell eggs, organic or not, would ever sell fertilized eggs it would be irresponsible on many levels… can you imagine making omelettes for the kids and you crack an egg and a chick fetus plops out? That is why almost no one, organic or not, sells fertilized eggs.

    I am not trying to be a jerk, but as a DVM I would like it to be clear, just because you buy organic (which I support and do myself) has nothing to do with the fertilization of an egg and anyone who tells you otherwise is not being honest.

  106. jemshoes says:

    Natalie Portman has never been one of my favourite celebrities, but it’s fantastic that she’s eating well for her baby – putting the baby’s needs first. It’s what every pregnant woman should do! Listen to your body, and eat what you need to eat. She’s doing this, and being very public about it, and it’s commendable.

  107. Cheyenne says:

    @Solveig: I know of a family of six (parents and four children between the ages of two and nine) where the children were placed in foster care after developing severe rickets due to a vegan diet imposed on them by their parents. Small children need animal protein and iron and calcium to develop properly. You can’t raise a child adequately on tempeh and tofu.

  108. Really says:

    Great comments for the most part. When I go out to dinner with meat eaters, I don’t sit there and question why they eat meat, yet for some reason I always have to explain why I don’t.
    I did some research. Slaughterouse, China Study, Eatting Animals, Omnivore’s Dilema and a couple others, all excellent books. I don’t care if you eat meat. I don’t think it’s healthy so I don’t eat it. I am disappointed that she gave in.

  109. Elle says:

    What did Natalie Portman ever do that has made everyone dislike her so intensely? I must be missing something. Do people think she is smug? She may be, but it also just may be the way her face is. It happens.

    Also, everyone seems to think she is saying eating meat is like rape. She is actually contrasting two theories on eating. The example (e.g. = for example) is what she sees as an argument that Foer would make to Pollard to refute Pollards argument. The excerpt doesn’t read to me that that is exactly what Ms. Portman believes just what she believes Foer would say. (Not everyone believes everything that one reads, even if one agrees with most of something.) Granted I’ve not read either’s books or the article she wrote on the huffingtonpost.com, but since it doesn’t seems that that is required to comment. Here it is! An argument for the underdog. She makes an odd underdog.

  110. jane16 says:

    Erin, you’re a sweetie and like most of the other vegans I know, are living by your noble beliefs to not do harm to other living things. However, not everyone can thrive on a vegan diet, the woman who wrote the book I mentioned above, said her spine “looks like a skydiving accident”, and she’s only in her mid thirties. Also, after living her prime years starving herself to not kill anything, even a slugs or ants, she comes to the conclusion that some life forms must always die so that others can live. But what really interested me was her research and writings on the food industry (and animal cruelty). Its really sick. And I do buy most of our food from our local farmers market and get my meat from whole Foods.

  111. Erika says:

    First of all …. wow. There are several smart, well-thought-out comments on this thread, from all POV’s, but most of these comments are pure nonsense.

    -Vegetarians/vegans can be perfectly healthy, or very unhealthy, just like meat-eaters — it all depends on how balanced and healthy your diet is

    -Vegetarians/vegans can remain so during pregnancy without harming their babies…if they follow a balanced diet. Just like meat-eating moms.

    -Natalie Portman did not compare meat-eating with rape. Michael Pollan sort of did. He had a decent point; we, as a culture, brutalize animals before we eat them, sometimes over the course of their entire lives.

    -Why on earth do so many people “hate” NP? I can totally see why people might not think she’s a good actress, or might think she’s kind of annoying or abrasive or whatever in interviews, but compared to most actresses or celebrities in her age bracket, she’s REALLY tame and reasonable… and, dare I say, intelligent.

  112. jane16 says:

    Also kids, the point about babies needing fat for their brains is sooo true. My mom couldn’t breast feed and her ped. told her to feed my older brother skim milk in a bottle!!! My poor brother has a lot of neurological issues, severe ADHD. My mother has felt guilty for harming him his entire life.

  113. Anna says:

    Raven Sparrow “Are you vegetarian for yourself or for the sake of the animals killed for meat? And if for the animals sake, do you eat fish? Because then that wouldn’t make any sense either.”

    I’m largely vegetarian – sometimes I’ll even go vegan for a week. I’m mostly vegetarian for the sake of the animals. I do occasionally feel like a burger, and when I do, dammit I’ll eat one. Ditto fish. It doesn’t make sense perhaps, but I rationalize it like this: I know I don’t have enough willpower to make a lifelong commitment to a diet. But if I cut down heavily on meat, then I’m still doing a bit of good. Just my two cents.

  114. Pirouette says:

    As usual, people who choose to eat meat are getting hyper-defensive and vegetarians/vegans come across as self-congratulating.

    Responsible, healthy life choices speak for themselves.

  115. CeeCee says:

    @ moon
    you & Natalie Portman should go hang out. You’d get along swell.

  116. yuppie says:

    I have a vegan friend who wouldn’t ride in my jeep because of it’s leather seating. And she’d scowl at me when I wore my shoes or my jackets with any leather on them. And she bought specialty toothpaste that wouldn’t harm the fishies. And after about a year, she went with me to lunch and ordered a giant bowl of ice cream. In between each mouthful, she told me that being a vegan ended up being too expensive and that she always felt unhealthy. She couldn’t bring herself to eat meat, but she swore up and down that including dairy and fish products had saved her health.
    Food for thought.
    I never minded her attitude because, while I could tell she didn’t approve, she never preached to me. She was always fine with me as I was.
    I’m ok with people wanting to be vegan/vegetarian. Just please don’t talk down to me. I’m aware of the issues, same as you. The only thing your preaching does is make me want to roast a chicken in front of your face. Something I don’t even necessarily agree with doing, given most circumstances. But your arrogance is through the roof. I’ll never feel bad about eating meat. There isn’t any deep-rooted problem I have that forces me to say it. And though I’m just a low-life, numb-skull for degrading myself in such a terrible way, I actually turned out great! I guess all the vegetables went to my DHA-craving brain and my wise body just threw out the rest, seeing as it’s useless.

  117. Nash says:

    Maybe Nathalie didn’t say outright that people who eat meat and rapists are the same but, by chosing to give this example amongst many others to argue her opinion; she indirectly compared both.

    To me, that’s the problem with a lot of vegans/vegetarians and many individuals following a religion as well, they seem to think or at least give the impression that their beliefs and practicing those make them better than the rest… it doesn’t. I understand what non meat eaters are fighting for and I don’t think it’s a wrong cause, but at the same time I won’t feel lower as a human being because I eat meat.

    You can follow your beliefs, explain to others why they’re worthwhile, while staying humble and tolerant that’s possible.

  118. Solveig says:

    @Taylor B (108), I get that my comment probably wasn’t clear enough, but I never meant to say that organic eggs aren’t fertilized and mass production eggs are, or vice versa.
    I spoke in response to someone who believed that the issue behind not eating eggs was the risk of eating a chicken foetus. Thus I tried to explain that the eggs we eat (“we” as “people”, generally speaking, not vegans or omnivores) aren’t fertilized and that the issue of not eating eggs is the cruelty of mass production and not the risk of eating a fetus.

  119. Solveig says:

    PS: @yuppie & Nash, I know some vegans/vegetarians are sort of hot-headed, but to be fair us (vegetarian/vegans) feel constantly judged by meat eaters who always question why we do not eat meat and most times they look at us with the pity look or reproachfully.
    I never talk of being a vegetarian unless people ask me first, because I’m sure most people don’t understand the reason why I made that choice and above all most people truly believe that eating veg is unhealthy, and frankly I hate to argue.

  120. Raven Sparrow says:

    @Shoe_Lover: Thanks for your answer.I understand what you’re saying. Your chickens are very lucky. :)

    @Anna: I admire your honesty :)

  121. LindaR says:

    My god, this topic sure makes people want to speechify.

  122. Erin says:

    @Jane 16 – Thank you! You’re a sweetie right back! I agree that not every way of eating is right or healthy for everyone,and that we all have to make our own choices. I also really admire that you’re doing the research and still making ethical choices about your food and what’s right for you.
    Hugs!

  123. harfang says:

    Look, I still don’t think that passage constitutes comparing meat-eating to rape. It was definitely an immature, cheap, Sturm und Drang attention-grabber of a sentence. But she didn’t call meat-eaters rapists. There are things about her that annoy me far more — such as, her blind support of Israeli designers, which is concurrent with many of my fellow Jews’ (including much of my family’s) desire to financially buoy Israel’s economy at all costs. Even if it means indirectly financing the IDF and/or mass ghettoization of Palestinians. Boycotting’s not the answer, but neither is the other extreme.

    But anyway. I eat meat because I cannot give it up yet. I’ve tried unsuccessfully in the past, and my life is sort of messed up these days, so I’m putting it off for now. Ideally, I would someday like to become vegetarian and eat only free-range dairy and eggs. I think that humanely keeping poultry, and a few other animals like goats that don’t destroy a bunch of potential farmland, is possibly a greater way to respect those animals and give them decent lives than to support ending all domestication. Because really, when people are all about liberating the enslaved and brutalized animals, that’s great — but what do you plan to do with them?

  124. moon says:

    @ Cee Cee #121
    Not being familiar with Natalie I wouldn’t know if we’d get on “swell”, but as you obviously know her so well, possibly you hang out with her? Are you as mixed up about your food choices as she? Because my take on this blurb about her, is that she sounds like she’s unsure of what she really likes or is comfortable eating. Most of the people I know eat what they like, pregnant or not. Me, I’m consistent in my choices, but I am older than Natalie and know myself better, as well I am a personal trainer and have studied nutrition etc. I can’t help but wonder, throughout these comments MANY opinions and experiences are shared,some of them very educated opinions, yet all you have to say, is the suggestion, that for some reason you have not stated, that I would get on swell with Ms.Portman, how extremely intellectual of you. Go eat whatever it is that you survive on and read a book, it might motivate your mind to THINK.

  125. Anna says:

    She can’t have been very serious about veganism!

  126. MAHEEN says:

    I love how she’s against cruelty against animals but probably cut a piece of her newborn baby’s dick. And the guy who wrote that book too. How is it not rape to meddle with a baby’s genitals, without anaesthetics, leaving it with a large open wound in a diaper where the urine must sting like hell, for some outdated sacrifice to the gods? He’ll probably hate her when he grows up, if his brain isn’t too damaged by the lack of fat in her diet.