Happy New Year, Everyone!
I’m excited about 2015! I strongly feel that this is the year that more people will come to realize that the way they’d been eating is not only detrimental to their health and/or to people they love, that it is also devastating our planet and causing great harm to other living beings, but there is a better way forward! That this IS a Win-Win no matter which way you look at it!
Here are some exciting things happening in the plant-based community:
Erica Meier via Compassion Over Killing writes, “Last week, the US Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee issued its proposed nutrition policy for 2015 that has the meat industry crying foul — and the Washington Post is calling it the “meat industry’s worst nightmare.” You can read the rest of the article here: (It is short!)
Further, Dr. Michael Greger had the privilege to speak in front of the “2015 Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee, which is responsible for making evidence-based recommendations on the next round of federal nutrition advice.” Definitely check out what he has to say and also watch the video that he’s got the link & password to. I can’t wait to watch this over the weekend! Good Stuff!
Please also check out his 14 part video series about the federal dietary guidelines. There is so much to learn! Further, I’d like to highlight a couple of books for you that I plan to read here in 2015. The first one was recommended by my friend Beth, a fellow PCRM (Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine) instructors. It is called “Comfortably Unaware”. If you have read it, perhaps you’d like to share your thoughts in the comments section with me and my readers!
Beth wrote, “IT’S MY MISSION to help as many people as possible transition to a plant-based dietary lifestyle and AVOID become a cancer statistic, a heart attack or stroke statistic, an MS statistic… you name it, a plant-based diet HELPS. All the protective nutrients are in whole plant foods… all of them.
If you WANT chronic disease… animal products are for you.
That’s what’s killing our planet (climate change, global warming, ocean dead zones, deforestation, air pollution, water pollution). Newsflash…. EVERYONE needs to be eating plant-based, globally. Or we won’t have a planet to worry about much longer.
Sadly, no. Read THIS book.” Convincing enough for me! How about you? Another book that I’d like to read it one that I saw JL Goes Vegan posting about and it is called, “The Modern Savage” by James McWilliams.
Amazon has this to say about the book, “In The Modern Savage, renowned writer, historian, and animal advocate James McWilliams pushes back against the questionable moral standards of a largely omnivorous world and explores the “alternative to the alternative”—not eating domesticated animals at all. In poignant, powerful, and persuasive prose, McWilliams reveals the scope of the cruelty that takes place even on the smallest and—supposedly—most humane animal farms. In a world increasingly aware of animals’ intelligence and the range of their emotions, McWilliams advocates for the only truly moral, sustainable choice—a diet without meat, dairy, or other animal products.”
A colleague of mine just lost his younger brother…He was only 34 years old. He died from a heart attack! Yes, you read that right, 34 years old! In my book that is way too young to die! If we want to turn this health crisis around, we must first start to look at our own personal diets, as well as how our eating habits are affecting global health and sustainability, plus the animals that also inhabit our earth!
My birthday just happened in December and I have now been on a plant-based vegan diet for over three years! I can tell you that it is one of the best decisions that I have ever made! I’m excited for those of you who decide to join me this year! If you have any questions feel free to ask me!
Much Health & Happiness to you all!
Good morning…God morgen…Guten morgen…& Buenos días,
Last night I promised a few Danes that I’d post and share Pete’s amazing shepherd pie recipe. The first time I had it I literally swooned. The pie came right out of Pete’s oven – warm and delicious! He even gave me a container of it to-go. I had it again for lunch over the next couple of days and it was still just as delicious and filling. Thank you, Pete for sharing this delicious recipe!
~Pete’s Shepherd Pie on Charlotte’s beautiful table~
4 lbs Red Organic Potatoes – halved and cut into quarters
3-4 Organic Carrots – cut into thirds and chopped into smaller pieces
1 Sweet Onion – chopped
8 large Cremini Mushrooms – halved and sliced
1 Bag “Meat” crumbles (Vegan)
2 tbsp Bragg’s Liquid Aminos
1 tsp Rosemary – finely chopped
1/2 cup Red Wine
1/2 Cup Vegetable broth + 3/4 Cup for Mashed Potatoes
1 tsp Black Pepper
Sea Salt to taste
2 tbsp Potato Flour – for thickening
1 – 12oz bag of frozen Organic Peas
2 large handfuls of Baby Spinach
1/2 stick of Earth Balance butter
5 tbsp Nutritional Yeast
1/2 tsp Garlic powder
Got all that? Great! Let’s get started on the process. It’s so easy to make, even a non-cook, or whatever you call yourself, can make this dish! Begin by washing the potatoes, followed by cutting off the spots/ends. Do Not include these in the dish!
Cut the potatoes in half, then into quarters. By now the water is boiling in a large pot. Cutting them this way will save time. Add a bit of salt and a little olive oil (or not) to the boiling water to prevent the potatoes from sticking.
After you got the potatoes going, work on the carrots. Cut them into thirds and then chop them into smaller pieces – like so.
Then chop the sweet onion and cut the large Cremini mushrooms in half and then slice them. Add to the carrots.
After all the chopping and slicing is done, get out a large pan and add either a little olive oil or some vegetable broth (if you’re on a “no-oil” regime) and heat it up. Add the meat crumbles and stir them around.
Afterwards add the carrots, mushrooms and onions to the mixture and blend together. Add Bragg’s Aminos, Rosemary, half a cup of red wine and stir it in. The alcohol will cook out, but add flavor. Also add half a cup of vegetable broth, black pepper and sea salt to taste.
Keep stirring all the ingredients together. Letting it cook for a little while (10 minutes or so). Then add the potato flour, stirring rigorously. Next add the peas, stirring them into the mixture and finally two large handfuls of baby spinach. The peas and spinach go in last because they don’t need to be cooked as long. Put the vegetables and “meat” mixture over into a large casserole dish. The one I use is made of glass from Pyrex (9 x 13″ = 22.5 x 33 cm).
~ Pre-Heat Oven to 350 ~
Time to work on the potatoes. You have drained the water, keeping the potatoes in the large pot that you cooked them in. You could, after they have cooked leave them sitting in the hot water. Add 3/4 cup of veggie broth + half stick of Earth Balance [vegan] butter, plus nutritional yeast and garlic powder. Using a potato masher, mash together until it the potatoes are nice and smooth. When they are ready, spread the mashed potatoes on top. You may have extra mashed potatoes left over. Wonderful right!? It’s one of my weaknesses!
Plop this baby in the oven and bake for 30 minutes (at 350)…and Voila! Dinner or lunch is ready!
Bon Appétit and Happy Holidays!
Happy Holidays, Vegalicious Readers!
It’s almost Christmas and I haven’t written since November. I’ve been so busy with work and getting my students ready for their holiday concert that there hasn’t been time, but I promise to make it up to you. I have some vegalicious recipes coming, including this one and have a few interviews lined up with some great people – so please check back! This first one is my friend Pete’s Pea Salad recipe. It’s seriously easy peasy to make! We are attending a Danish holiday party together and this is one of the dishes that we are bringing. Here’s a look at the finished product first.
First chop the sweet onion, then dice the water chestnuts and add seasoning.
Thaw two bags of Organic Sweet peas. First let them sit out for a while. Then put the bags in warm water and finally rinse under warm water in a strainer.
Add Veganaise to the mixture of onions & water chestnuts and add to the peas, which you will need a larger bowl for! While the peas were thawing, cut up the “meat” into crumbles and then let it brown slightly in a small pan. We couldn’t find Vegan Bacon, so we used Tofurky’s Hickory Smoked Deli Slices instead. Just so you know that you’ve got options!
2 – 12 oz bags of frozen organic peas
3/4 cups of Sweet Onion diced
1 can of water chestnuts sliced
1/4 cup of diced vegan bacon or Tofurky Hickory Smoked
3/4 cup of Veganaise
1 tsp of Braggs Organic Sprinkle 24 Herbs & Spices Seasoning
1/4 tsp of black pepper
1/4 tsp of dill – fresh is preferred – chopped
Final note: Mix the ingredients well, add Veganaise if you feel it needs extra. Refrigerate before consuming for at least an hour. Then mix together before serving!
ENJOY and Happy Holidays!
Last week I spoke to a woman whom I hadn’t seen in years, so we gave each other the “Cliff Notes” of what’s been happening in our lives. I told her about my diet change to a whole foods plant-based diet and the reasons why. She told me that she has tumors growing up and down her arms. When I told her that this diet could help her, she replied, “I don’t drink dairy, but I could NEVER give up my meat!” I then asked her, “How many medications are you taking?” She replied, “I’m on 30 different medications!” Wowsa! Did I really hear that right? 30 Different medications? Yes, 30!!! I don’t know about you, but if I was battling tumor growth and on 30 different medications, then I’d have to take a hard look at why is this happening? Why do the tumors keep appearing? What can I do to change that? Is my diet possibly to blame for this? Could changing my diet help reverse this?
The good news is that there are solutions and that we each can make different choices and significant decisions towards health and wellness each and every day…and with each and every bite & drink we put into our bodies!
After having had this conversation with this woman, I was at my dentists office for three and a half hour this week having a crown replaced and a cavity fixed, and while I was in the chair I passed the time watching TV, which I seldom do since I only subscribe to Netflix and my friends station over at Food Matters TV. Thanks to them for their excellent Quotes, which I’m borrowing today!
As I was laying in the chair, one of the drug commercials popped up. This one was for Enbrel, but it could have been any other drug for that matter. Enbrel, by the way, is used to treat long-term inflammatory diseases such as: moderate to severe rheumatoid arthritis, adult chronic moderate to severe plaque psoriasis, psoriatic arthritis and a few others of the kind. My favorite part, however, is when the side effects are listed…you know, right after they’ve painted a rosy picture for you of what your life could be like. For ENBREL some of the side effects include:
Risk of Infection – “ENBREL can lower the ability of your immune system to fight infections. Some people have serious infections while taking ENBREL. These infections include tuberculosis (TB), and infections caused by viruses, fungi or bacteria that spread throughout their body. Some people have died from these infections.” ~Enbrel (etanercept)
Risk of Cancer – “People with rheumatoid arthritis or psoriasis, especially those with very active disease, may be more likely to get lymphoma.” ~Enbrel AHEM, isn’t this what this drug is meant to cure?
Heart Failure - “including new heart failure or worsening of heart failure you already have. New or worse heart failure can happen in people who use TNF blocker medicines, like ENBREL.” ~Enbrel
Psoriasis - “Some people using ENBREL developed new psoriasis or worsening of psoriasis they already had.” ~Enbrel
Autoimmune Reactions, including -
“Lupus-like syndrome. Symptoms include a rash on your face and arms that gets worse in the sun.”
“Autoimmune hepatitis. Liver problems can happen in people who use TNF blocker medicines, including ENBREL. These problems can lead to liver failure and death.” ~Enbrel
Well, at least the drug companies are kind enough to let you know what the risks are should you choose to take their drug, right!? This is also called, “We are covering our a$$es!” I don’t know about you, but I know that if I can avoid taking any of these drugs I will! This morning I came across this great quote via FMTV from Dr. Ian Brighthope
A nurse named Jen Jen commented on it saying, “As a Nurse I can tell you that most people don’t WANT to hear about the “primary cause” of their disease. They KNOW why they have high blood pressure, high cholesterol, heart disease, liver disease, etc. They don’t want to do anything different in their lifestyles. It’s much easier to just take a pill. It’s not JUST the fault of the medical profession. It’s the fault of the people much of the time as well.” Hear! Hear! Jen Jen! People want an easy fix, but god forbid that you suggest that they change their diet and lifestyle. Another woman named Debbie commented this on my page, “Whatever “it” might be, whether it’s sugar, fat, alcohol, cigarettes, etc., it’s literally “to DIE FOR!” And, that’s their choice. But for the rest of us, we need doctors who are knowledgeable about nutrition & a healthy lifestyle without pharmaceuticals & all their nasty side effects!” Again, truth be told! Your health is really in your own hands and once you realize this then you can start making some serious positive changes! This does not mean that you shouldn’t consult with your doctor, but if he’s clueless in regards to diet and health…then perhaps it is wise to seek the information somewhere else. A friend told me that one of her colleagues is 250 pounds, but her doctor tells her that she is “just right!” AHEM, seriously! 250 pounds is considered “normal”! Wow! Something is seriously amiss here! I will end with this brilliant quote from Dr. Charlotte Gerson.
Feel free to leave me a note with your thoughts on these matters.
What healthy changes are you currently making?
What would you like to change?
How can I support you in making these changes?
Have you been reading the news lately? Well, finally some major studies have been coming out in regards to dairy consumption. It won’t be long before the whole system cracks and most people will have to face the hard reality, that dairy does No Body No Good…nor was it ever meant for us to consume in any way shape or form!
Listen to this from PCRM (Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine), “High cow’s milk intake is associated with increased risk for bone fractures and death, according to a new study in the British Medical Journal. Researchers followed 61,433 women and 45,339 men for more than 20 years and 11 years, respectively. Among women, those who consumed three or more glasses of milk per day had a 60 percent increased risk for developing a hip fracture and a 16 percent increased risk for developing any bone fracture. These results are similar to previous studies showing no protective effect of increased milk consumption on fracture risk.
Additionally among women, for each glass of milk consumed, risk of dying from all causes increased by 15 percent, from heart disease by 15 percent, and from cancer by 7 percent. For the women who consumed three or more glasses of milk per day, compared with less than one glass, risk of dying increased by 93 percent. Men had a 10 percent increased risk of dying when consuming three or more glasses of milk per day, compared with less than one glass.”
I have said it before and will say it again, if you have a cancer cell looking for action and you pour on dairy – the growth is explosive in just a matter of a few weeks! Having lost my close friend to breast cancer, I believe that dairy was part of the problem during her second bout with it. However, I didn’t know this at the time and neither did she. Her doctor didn’t either! Most of them aren’t going to tell you because this is not what they’re in the business to do! It’s not because they’re necessarily a bad physicians, but simply because they were never taught nutrition nor are most doctors into preventative medicine. Casein is, by the way, the main protein in cows milk, making up about 80% of it. Today I saw a man sitting in his car guzzling milk from a jug just like this guy. I was itching to knock on his window and give him “the talk”, but I refrained! However, the other day when I was at the grocery store and was passing the frozen foods isle,
I saw a guy loading his cart with Tillamook Ice cream. I just couldn’t help myself! I showed the guy the non-dairy options and talked to him about the ill effects of dairy. His name was Mike. He’s a father of a three-year-old and has a wife! I said, “Look, Mike, the statistics are grim enough as they are! You want to be around for your child, right? Well, It’s time to ditch the dairy!” Funny, I’m an excellent sales person, but when it comes to THIS, I am really bad for sales, unless it’s of course, non-dairy milk! Well, it’s not just me spewing stuff all over the page to give milk a bad wrap. Another study also came out from Uppsala University in Sweden which suggested “that consuming more milk could actually be associated with higher mortality and bone fractures in women and higher mortality in men.” I have provided a link to the article, from the Washington Post, at the bottom of this page.