Although I’m pleased that this photoset that I posted recently got over 800 notes, I got a little irked everytime someone wrote something along the lines of “This is why I’m so proud that I’m vegetarian”. I’m totally all for people making any difference that they can, even if that just means giving up say, pork or bacon. Often one small move like that can lead to further action along the line and sometimes those small moves inspire other people in your lives to take action as well - so it’s all wonderful.
BUT, if you are commenting on that photoset and saying how proud you are to be vegetarian but you still have milk products in your life - then perhaps it’s worth taking the next step and removing that from your diet also. Cows that are kept for milking, to make your cheeses, butters and yoghurts are kept in the same condition that cows kept for meat-making are. Perhaps it’s even worse - cows have to continually be impregnated to keep producing the milk. Their stalls are tiny. And that is only the beginning. There’s a lot of info out there and I can guarantee once you start researching, there’s little chance you’ll be able to touch dairy ever again.
It’s probably more personal opinion than anything but I find eating/drinking dairy products to be just as disgusting, damaging to your health and ethically problematic as eating meat.
Did everyone read about the recent study showing that crabs not only feel pain but that they remember it? Researchers at the School of Biological Sciences at Queen’s University in Belfast gave hermit crabs mild electric shocks in order to determine if they could feel pain. Not surprisingly, the answer was “yes.” While I don’t think it’s ethical to subject animals to pain in order to prove that they can feel it, I am pleased that researchers are helping to prove that it’s unethical to eat animals—any animals.
Other studies have suggested that crabs, lobsters, and prawns (which are similar to shrimp) can feel pain, yet as researcher Bob Elwood points out, the millions of crustaceans used by the fishing and food industries each day have little to no legal protection. Professor Ellwood feels that a potentially very large problem is being ignored, and although he doesn’t come right out and say that people shouldn’t eat crabs, lobsters, or prawns, one can infer that from his comments. “With vertebrates we are asked to err on the side of caution,” he says, “and I believe this is the approach to take with these crustaceans.”
Crustaceans Deserve Compassion
Now there’s a novel idea, one that relatively few people embrace. Even some “vegetarians,” or pesco-vegetarians, eat fish and other sea animals, presumably believing that these beings are somehow less capable of suffering than cows, pigs, chickens, or turkeys. Sea animals (mainly shrimp and scallops) were the last animals I gave up when I went vegetarian too—a simple lack of thought on my part.
It shouldn’t really take a study to make people realize that crabs, prawns, lobsters, and other sea animals feel pain when they’re boiled, steamed, or killed in other cruel ways. Even people who aren’t entirely convinced should err on the side of compassion, as Prof. Ellwood suggests.
I think if people knew more about crustaceans, they’d understand why we shouldn’t eat them. Not only do these animals feel pain like people do, they’re similar to us in other significant ways as well. Lobsters carry their young for nine months and can live to be more than 100 years old. They use complex signals to establish social, lasting relationships. They take long seasonal journeys each year, often traveling for hundreds of miles. Crabs are capable of learning from their mistakes and retaining information so that they don’t make the same mistake again in the future. They learn to avoid foods that make them ill and they adapt to changing cues in their environment.
Hmmm. Actually, I can’t say all of these things for some people—it seems crustaceans may be more evolved than humans in many respects!
“I’ll Have A Plate Full of Bodies, Please”
What’s really unsettling—and infuriating—is that when people eat a crab, lobster, or shrimp, they’re devouring an entire body. I mean, they can form cow or pig flesh into a patty and call it a “hamburger” or “sausage,” and it distances them from what they’re eating, but when they eat a crab, lobster, or shrimp, they are biting into an entire being. Yikes!
How is it that people can obliviously pound on a corpse with a mallet, rip off animals’ legs, and suck the flesh from his or her skeleton? It’s gruesome, really. With shrimp or prawns, people often eat dozens of whole bodies in one sitting. I guess I never thought about it when I ate shrimp either, but it’s really quite disturbing, and it shows how disconnected many people are from their “food.”” —vegancampus.com
[I’ve read a lot of conflicting info on soy, if anyone has anything that contradicts this argument - with references to medical studies preferably - I’d love to read it.]
Is Soy bad for you? The short answer? YES! The soybean was a modest and unpopular crop until food manufacturers intent on creating cheap vegetable oils convinced the U.S. government to start subsidizing it. The soy was turned into oil, and the industry was left with an industrial waste product. Then somebody had a brilliant idea:
Let’s take this industrial waste product full of toxins and carcinogens — isolated soy protein — and turn it into food that people will eat!
The soybean (U.S.) or soya bean (UK) is a species of legume native to East Asia. Traditional nonfermented food uses of soybeans include soy milk, and from the latter tofu and tofu skin. Fermented foods include soy sauce, fermented bean paste, natto, and tempeh, among others. The oil is used in many industrial applications. The main producers of soy are the United States (35%), Brazil (27%), Argentina (19%), China (6%) and India (4%).
The soybean itself is inedible. Soybeans contain toxins meant to ward off insects and protect soil.
Soy dangers exist because it’s an unnatural by-product your body can’t digest without processing. If you were to eat unprocessed soy, it would cause cramping, nausea, and possibly more serious health problems. Maybe you are experiencing these symptoms and never considered that it could be related to drinking soy milk.
Soy must be fermented in order to be digestible to humans. That means that if you eat soy at all, you should stick to fermented soy products. Societies that depend heavily on soy-based foods use traditional preparation methods thousands of years old that neutralize or eliminate these poisons. Tempeh, miso, natto, are fermented products and are safe. The fermentation process destroys the toxins. Tofu in Asia comes from the pressed “curds” of the soybean and the toxins are removed.
The average Asian diet in China, Indonesia, Korea, Japan, and Taiwan includes between nine and 36 grams of soy per day. Compare that to a cup of tofu (252 grams) or soy milk (240 grams).Soy is a Phyotestrogen
This means that it contains natural compounds that mimic estrogen in our bodies. A leading cause of breast cancer, endometriosis, uterine fibroids, infertility, and low libido is unopposed estrogen, or estrogen dominance. Why, then, would anyone argue that we should consume more of a food high in estrogen?Soy is Goitrogenin Goitrogens are substances that suppress the function of the thyroid gland by interfering with iodine uptake, which can, as a result, cause an enlargement of the thyroid. If your thyroid fails, you gain weight. You have a harder time regulating your moods. You get colder more easily. You’re more easily fatigued. You may also demonstrate an inability to concentrate and remember details. Soy is a Trypsin Inhibitor
Trypsin inhibitors are chemicals that reduce the availability of trypsin, an enzyme essential to nutrition of many humans. Trypsin is a digestive enzyme we need to properly digest protein. Without enough trypsin, you’ll experience many digestive problems including stomach cramps, diarrhea, and bleeding.Soy and Men
The dangers of soy for men are a result of the high levels of the female hormone estrogen that soy and soy-based products contain.
- According to a study performed by Brigham Young University’s Neuroscience Center, soy’s phytoestrogens can decrease testosterone levels in the body. The BYU study notes that in a relatively short period of time, which was five weeks, soy was shown to significantly alter hormone levels in the body.
- Soy affects the quality and concentration of a male’s sperm, especially if taken in large quantities or if the subject was exposed to high levels in the womb
On the other hand, fermented soy stops the effect of phytic acid and increases the availability of isoflavones. The fermentation also creates the probiotics, the “good” bacteria that our body is absolutely dependent on, such as lactobacilli, which increases the quantity, availability, digestibility and assimilation of nutrients in our body.
Many studies have shown traditionally fermented soy, which is the form that is very popular in many Asian cultures, aids in preventing and reducing a variety of diseases including certain forms of heart disease and cancers.
Products using fermented soy include: Natto (or Nattokinase, the enzyme you can find in supplemental form that is made when Natto soy beans are fermented); Miso; Tempeh; Soy sauce; and fermented tofu or fermented soy milk.
The soy industry is exactly that – an industry, with the goal of making money. They want to convince us that soy is a miracle health food, and they have invested millions of dollars in marketing to do just that – quite successfully.
I ate so many tomatoes in the first few weeks of going raw that I can’t face them at the moment. The thing is, I still had ten or so left from my enthusiastic market haul last week. So I’ve put them in the dehydrator with basil and my interest in them has been revived. They smell delightful.
~most pointless post ever
◄◄◄◄◄◄ Family-friendly one pot meals by @Erin Boylan Gionet ►►►►►►
As I mentioned, this seems to be the best way to get all the nutrients into my kids, and easier than trying to have them finish 3 different foods in one sitting. These meals are fairly quick and easy to prepare, and can be done in the slow-cooker to save even more time. My family enjoys these meals so much that we often wonder why we own plates - most of what we enjoy can be eaten out of a bowl (soups, stews, curries, salads, etc.)! The following is a selection of winter meals, but in the summer we tend to eat more salads and raw meals.
I don’t really cook from recipes, but I will outline the general method, and some ingredient options that we like. Once you have the method down, the possibilities are endless. Please post below if you have specific questions. Hope this helps!
1) Sauté savoury vegetables (usually onion, carrot, celery and garlic) in coconut or grapeseed oil until softened and cooked down - about 10 minutes. This step is important for building the flavour base in every recipe.
2) Add spices and seasonings and cook for another minute or two.
3) Add firm vegetables such as potatoes, yams or squash and stir to combine.
4) Add legumes, soft vegetables and leafy greens, canned tomatoes if using (I like Eden Organic as the cans are BPA-free).
5) Add additional liquid if necessary (veggie broth, coconut milk, etc.). Season with salt & pepper to taste. You can also use Bragg Liquid Seasoning, vegan Worcestershire sauce and hot pepper sauce to taste.
6) Bring mixture to a boil, then reduce to a simmer until all ingredients are cooked through and flavours are combined. Correct seasoning. Garnish with fresh herbs at the end if desired.
7) Serve over a hearty grain such as quinoa or brown rice.
- Veggies: cubed butternut squash or yam, zucchini, eggplant, bell peppers, raisins
- Spices: cinnamon, cumin, coriander, curry powder, fresh or ground ginger
- Legumes: chickpeas
- Canned tomatoes (and broth if needed)
- Fresh parsley
- Veggies: potatoes, cauliflower, green peas, spinach
- Spices: curry paste or powder, garam masala
- Legumes: chickpeas or lentils (if using lentils uncooked, add extra liquid)
- Canned tomatoes (and broth if needed), canned coconut milk if desired
- Finish with a squirt of lime juice and fresh cilantro
African Peanut Stew
- Veggies: Yam, bell peppers, kale
- Spices: cumin, coriander, ginger
- Legumes: chickpeas
- Canned tomatoes (and broth if needed)
- Finish with ¼ c. smooth peanut butter and fresh cilantro
Minestrone Soup (I make my soups very thick, like a stew)
- Veggies: lots of carrot/onions/celery/garlic (more than for the other recipes), green cabbage, zucchini, chopped green beans, bell peppers, whatever veggies you have on hand
- Spices: bay leaves, oregano, basil , parsley
- Legumes: kidney beans (can also use cannellini beans or navy beans)
- Canned tomatoes and broth to fill pot. Also add some pasta shells or macaroni (I use rice noodles).
Kale & White Bean Soup
- Veggies: lots of carrot/onions/celery/garlic , potatoes, kale
- Spices: bay leaves, smoked paprika, parsley
- Legumes: cannellini or navy beans
- Veggie broth to fill pot
As you can see, with a little creativity, the sky’s the limit. Other favourites include Mushroom, Barley & Bean soup and Black Bean Chili with Corn & Quinoa. I also make a Thai curry with green or red curry paste, lemon grass, keffir lime leaves and coconut milk – yum!
I don’t do Valentine’s Day (LOATHE IT) but I am seriously contemplating pretending that I’m really miffed that my partner didn’t get me anything just so I can make him go get me a Vitamix. HAHA.
Everything is really good. I’ve written two posts but kept sounding like a gloating douchebag so I’ll leave it simple. I’m nine days in on low fat raw and am doing ace. Energy is good, anxiety is almost completely gone, I’ve been the best axample i can be and my family are eating better and my mum is on the verge of going high raw vegan (she is still going to eat some cooked vegan meals). She was eating my zucchini and tomato concoction today and loved it (she mixed chilli in because she’s crazy for chilli). Then I juiced her a litre of carrot and orange juice. She’s always been a health nut so it’s really exciting that I’m inspiring her to finally take action on how she’s always wanted to live. Going to the organic / farmer’s markets is super fun when you’re raw. I got so many lychees today, zomg.
And organic grapes, seriously, out of this world.
If overt fat is eaten, it’s best to do so at the end of the day so energy is not diverted from exercise or mental tasks to digestion.
—The 80/10/10 Diet
“We must heat starchy carbohydrates to them, thus facilitating their breakdown into glucose. Unfortunately, heating caramelises these complex carbohydrate foods, fusing their molecules into a sticky like goo. (Dextrin and starch are the two principal vegetable-based adhesives, commonly used as glue for corrugated packaging and wallpaper.) The body can realize only perhaps 70% of the energy potential of cooked starchy foods.
This melting of sugar molecules occurs in carbohydrate-based foods subjected to cooking temperatures whether or causes them to produce an extremely high glycemic response in the body. Blood-sugar levels predictably spike after we eat cooked carbohydrate foods, especially grains that have had their fiber refined out of them. Heat the carbohydrates further and they will char, or blacken, as happens to burnt toast. This blackened carbohydrate is toxic, a known carcinogen.
The digestion of cooked complex carbohydrates is typically impaired by the fatty and sugary foods with which they are consumed, leading to fermentation. The byproducts of fermentation are gas, alcohol, and acetic acid. Alcohol is a protoplasmic poison that kills every cell with which it comes into contact. Acetic acid in its pure form is a known poison. When diluted with parts water, it is called vinegar. The acetic acid in vinegar is still toxic, regardless of dilution. “
[80-10-10 by Douglas Graham]
Haha, I love this guy:
One morning, some wild turkeys were outside my tent eating breakfast. I opened my tent and said, “Good morning turkeys!” They did not answer. They just ignored me. It occurred to me that I am not here for their purposes, and they are not here for mine. I thought about goats and the goat cheese I was eating and decided not to eat it any more. I went two days without eating it. I was craving it though, so I had some. I watched my mood change as anger and hatred engulfed my body. I realized the impact eating the goat cheese had.
[from a testimonial in Doug Graham’s 80-10-10] ‘
Good morning turkeys! naww why are they ignoring me ;___; *vegan epiphany*
- Beetroot Is Your Liver’s Friend
The beta cyanin in beetroot can help detox your liver, having a knock-on effect for your bloodstream, by helping the body to eliminate toxins and potentially preventing the build-up of fatty deposits.
So if you have found yourself ‘over-indulging’, adding some raw beetroot or beetroot juice to your diet can help you recover.
Then again, why save it just for the ‘morning after’?!
- Beetroot Juice Can Prevent Strokes & Heart Attacks
Beetroot juice has been shown to reduce high blood pressure. It affects an estimated 25% of the world’s adult population and is a significant factor in coronary heart disease and strokes.
Researchers at Barts’ Hospital (London) and the London School Of Medicine found that drinking 500ml of beetroot juice a day can significantly reduce high blood pressure, for over 24 hours after drinking.
Whilst most of us wouldn’t fancy a pint of red stuff every morning, the research gives us a very big hint that including at least some beetroot in our diet on a daily basis will be good for us.
- Beetroot Is Packed With Nutrients
Beetroot is a super-storehouse of both vitamin C and iron, which is great news for your body. Both are essential elements for health, but many of us struggle to absorb enough iron. Luckily, good old Mother Nature included extra vitamin C in her beetroots and this vitamin helps increase iron absorbtion!
Vitamin C is water soluble, which means it leaches out of veggies when you cook them in water. So the easiest way to get your combo-fix is to eat raw beetroot.
Incidentally, young beetroot leaves are a better source of iron than spinach!
The roots are a good source of many other vitamins and minerals, including folic acid, phosphorous, magnesium and B6.
Here are some super-scrummy beetroot recipes to tempt your taste buds.
- Beetroot Can Cheer You Up
Beetroot has been shown to contain the compound betaine, which enhances the production of the body’s natural mood-lifter seratonin. So it would seem that munching fresh beetroot can literally make you smile.
Betaine is also really useful for cardiovascular health.
- Immune System Booster
Beetroot’s amazing range of vitamins and nutrients have been shown to boost your immune system, helping you better fight off infection. These nutrients help stimulate the reoxygenation of cells and the production of new blood cells. Pretty important stuff!
“It makes sense that we would want to derive the full nutritional benefit from the protein foods we eat. But few people realize that cooking denatures the proteins in foods, fusing the amino acids together with enzyme-resistant bonds that preclude them from being fully broken down, thus rendering the proteins substantially useless - and in fact toxic to us. All proteins that we consume must be broken down into single, individual amino acids before they can be of any use to us; our bodies cannot use “protein” for any purpose whatsoever. […]
Hair is primarily protein. A strand of hair can be rolled into a ball and then pulled back into a strand. However, if a strand of hair is rolled into a ball and then held over a candle flame, even for just a moment, chemistry happens. The hair literally attaches to itself in new places. It can never be returned to its original form as a strand. When an egg hits a frying pan, a similar irreversible chemical change takes place. Our digestive enzymes cannot easily break down coagulated protein molecules once they fuse together. The best they can accomplish is partial breakdown, into polypeptides.
The body recognizes clumps of partially broken down proteins, known as polypeptides, as foreign invaders to be attacked, contained, and elimi- nated through the kidneys. The cell walls of the kidneys do not allow for easy transport of these substances, and their buildup causes the distress that leads to kidney stones and eventually to kidney failure. Undigested proteins also produce allergies, arthritis, leaky gut syndrome, and other autoimmune disorders.”
[80-10-10 by Douglas Graham]
In terms of human evolutionary history, years is an extremely short period of time, not nearly enough for our digestive physiology to have adapted to the kind of wholesale degradation that cooking causes to our food. Physiologists suggest that it generally takes 50,000 to 500,000 years or longer for evolutionary change to occur. Even then, however, we could not adapt in a healthful fashion to the nutritional losses or the toxins created by cooking food.
Studies have shown that our immunes system often reacts to the introduction of cooked food to the bloodstream the same way it does to foreign pathogens such as bacteria, viruses, and fungi: The body literally attacks the food, sending an army of white blood cells to do the job. This phenomenon, which has been linked with the eventual development of AIDS, does not occur when we eat raw foods.
[80-10-10 by Douglas Graham]