I don't like the word 'Vegan'. Have you noticed whenever anyone says, "I'm a Vegan", there seems to be a shift in the atmosphere! People ever so slightly move away from you, or they can't quite make eye contact, or they look puzzled and confused. Some will even make fun of your lifestyle choice and others will go so far as to deride you personally! ...as if it is an affront to them!
There appears to be a general misconception that being "a Vegan" is only for weird people, or hippies or greenies, or those who know nothing about nutrition. I have to admit...I used to be one of those people. I used to believe that Vegans could not possibly be healthy or be getting adequate nutrition without at least Dairy and eggs!
That was until I went on my own search for health and a natural alternative to the medications that I was dependent on every day just to get my joints moving and be relatively pain free.
On my journey, I found some wonderful companions who showed me a better way to eat for my own personal well-being. Friends like, Dr. Hans Diehl, Dr. John McDougall, Dr. Gregor, Dr. Caldwell Esselstyn and a chiropractor, John Bergman (and yes I used to think Chiropractors were at best a bunch of quacks who cracked bones!)
Listening to these learned people helped to change me from an ignorant know-it-all to a person who was determined to find good health through a completely plant based diet. Notice I didn't say Vegan? As I said, I don't like that term! I eat a plant based diet, based around starches, and as far as I am able, I only eat foods as grown...which means you can recognise what they are before Kellogs, Pringles, Arnotts, McDonalds etc, have changed them into something they are not!
I have learned that food actually is medicine! My diet consists of whole grains/ starches, legumes, nuts, seeds, fruit, vegetables, pulses, soy and almond milks, and healthy processed foods such as wholegrain breads and pastas. I no longer need my medication for joint pain and I have slowly, but surely, dropped 8kg of excess body fat. I eat as much as I want, as often as I want, but only plant based food as grown, with the occasional dairy free 80% Cocoa Dark chocolate as a treat.
I did not make my decision to eat a Plant Based Diet lightly, as I knew that it would pose some problems logistically in my own family....I can't force my family to eat the way that I do. I can't force my husband to suddenly eat no animal products, but I can set an example, and I can serve less meat-based meals during the week! Every little bit helps!... because not only does the health of my family improve, but so does the health of our planet!
So...my family now looks like this: Me (totally plant-based), My husband (Eats meat and plant-based diet), My 16 year old son (Vegetarian but eats Eggs and Dairy) and my 13 year old son (who eats a limited amount of foods and is not courageous enough to try new things). Cooking meals is a challenge! As far as I am able, I choose to make food that caters to, many styles of eating. For example, when making a stir-fry, I stir-fry my tofu, then I stir-fry the vegetables, then I stir-fry the meat separately, and combine the components when dishing up as per each person's preference. It does take longer, but it works for me.
Mexican is perhaps the most versatile and easiest to prepare. We all love Burritos or Tacos and preparing this meal is easy, nutritious and delicious! With a meal consisting of Rice, burrito, avocado, whole kidney beans, green leaves, tomato, and salsa...with some meat on the side for the carnivores...it is perfect and quick.
As I write this, I know there will be those who will just disagree with the whole "plant-based thing" and not bother to go any further, there will be others who already choose this way of eating and need no further encouragement, and then there may be others who are interested enough to at least read and research a little further. If that is you, then I am including some video links to talks that I found helpful and useful, and also some research papers that you may like to investigate further.
There is a lot of information in these videos and you don't have to watch all of them at once! But I do encourage you to come back to this page, and when you have some time to yourself, listen to what some of these doctors have to say. Bookmark the page, and do your health a favour by revisiting these talks and find encouragement if you too, are considering choosing a plant based diet for your own health and well-being.
1. 'Food as Medicine and Treating the Most Common Diseases with Diet by Dr Gregor.
2. Dr. Hans Diehl M.D.- Eat More Lose Weight.
3. Dr. John McDougall M.D. - The Ultimate Diet Therapy
4. Professor T.Colin Campbell Phd.- Animal Protein, Meat and Dairy, Causes Cancer
5. Dr. John McDougall M.D.- Inflammatory Arthritis
There are many more informative videos by these Doctors on Youtube if you are interested:)
Some Further Reading-
Public health implications of meat production and consumption
Polly Walker,Pamela Rhubart-Berg,Shawn McKenzie,Kristin Kelling and Robert S Lawrence (2005).
Public Health Nutrition, Volume 8, Issue04, June 2005, pp 348-356
The nutritional adequacy of plant-based diets
T. A. B. Sanders (1999).
Proceedings of the Nutrition Society, Volume 58, Issue02, May 1999, pp 265-269
A perspective on vegetarian dietary patterns and risk of metabolic syndrome
Joan Sabaté and Michelle Wien (2015).
British Journal of Nutrition, Volume 113, SupplementS2, April 2015, pp S136-S143
Replacement of meat and dairy by plant-derived foods: estimated effects on land use, iron and SFA intakes in young Dutch adult females
Elisabeth HM Temme,Hilko van der Voet,Jac TNM Thissen,Janneke Verkaik-Kloosterman,Gerda van Donkersgoed and Sanderine Nonhebel (2013).
Public Health Nutrition, Volume 16, Issue10, October 2013, pp 1900-1907
The other day as I was walking through my local Shopping Mall, I stopped to notice the people! I know that this sounds strange..but there I was surrounded by a Mall full of people moving, shopping, walking aimlessly, and eating. And...there was me...just another one of these people moving, shopping, walking aimlessly and thankfully...not eating!
For a few endless seconds...the world suddenly turned very surreal. Almost like I was the only still point in an endless sea of moving feet, arms, legs and mouths...who were all these people? What were they feeling? As I stood and watched, I knew that I would never know...and to be truthful...did I really want to know?
Have you ever noticed how alone each person really is? Surrounded by humanity and yet still alone?
As my gaze narrowed, my eyes happened to take note of tables of people chatting over coffee and cake. Some tables were quite animated, others more subdued, and still others where the coffee drinkers were just sharing the same space, looking bored...
I was still in this surreal world where the seconds felt like they were being dragged through molasses, yet my focus grew sharper and more acute. I could see faces smiling, hands gesturing and eyes looking lively or dim. I noticed that the tables of girl friends sharing coffee were animated, active and noisy, while the mixed couples or mixed friends looked interested in what the others were saying...some smiling...others intensely engaged with the conversation.
As I shifted my gaze from table to table, I noticed (what I thought to be) the married couples or long time partners sharing their coffee...there was little to no conversation, no eye contact, no leaning in towards the other person to hear what they were saying...Have you ever noticed that?
I remember when I was in my twenties we would go to restaurants or coffee shops and play, Spot the Married Couple. It was always easy...they were the tables where there was very little conversation, or where one or both were reading the newspaper, or where two people just sat and shared a space yet looked totally alone. Have you ever noticed that?
Is it because they have run out of things to say? Is it because they have said too much? Or is it because they know each other as well as anyone can know another person, and so there is now no need for words? I will never know.
Have you ever noticed faces...I mean really noticed? Not just a pretty face in the crowd...I mean the face of a stranger whose lines and eyes and expression is so arresting...that their story, the one locked deep inside them, is screaming to be told? Have you ever noticed someone like that?
As I stood and time started to shift me out of the surreal and back into the flow of life...I realised that what I caught a glimpse of was a small facet of our human condition...of my human condition...life is movement and stasis...it is relationship and isolation...it is connecting and loving when you can...it is activity and boredom...it is a smile at a stranger...and it is always accepting that we can never truly be known by another human being.
This is not a bad thing...it just is.
I am thankful at those times for my faith...where I know that I can always be truly known by God.
Don't worry...I am not a morbid person...I was just fascinated by my moment when time seemed to stand still in a busy shopping mall...and I noticed.
Hi! Welcome to my Soapy Conversations about Soap and AllSorts of other Topics! I live in NSW Australia and I am a mother of five, Grandmother of Five and I sponsor seven children through Compassion Australia. I love making soap, reading, teaching English, and being an Advocate for children and women living in poverty.
|AllSorts of Soap||
AllSorts of Soaps