What a wonderful long weekend in Canada! What’s better than coming from a holiday to a lovely post about tofu? Please meet Nancy, author of Ordinary Vegan. “I’m Nancy M – A free-spirited music loving girl who just wants everyone to get along. The movie, “Forks Over Knives” inspired me to live a vegan life. My hope is to inspire others by sharing my experiences, tips and recipes to make it as easy as possible for you to choose a a plant-based diet. Be forewarned – becoming vegan will change your life forever! Welcome to Ordinary Vegan.” Follow Ordinary Vegan‘s journey on Facebook, and Twitter. Welcome Nancy!
Today is World Kidney Day and awareness events are being held around the globe. They call it the “silent disease” because you don’t usually feel anything until it’s too late. World Kidney Day encourages people to be screened to detect any problems early on. More than 10% of people, or more than 20 million, aged 20 years or older in the USA have chronic kidney failure.
In the United States, the leading cause of kidney failure is Type 2 diabetes. As many of you know, Type 2 diabetes has reached epidemic proportions in the USA and the statistics continue to grow with no change in site. The primary culprits are obesity and elevated levels of cholesterol, both of which are preventable through diet.
Now lets talk about cancer. In 1971, President Nixon and Congress declared a war on cancer. So what’s happened in 42 years? Cancer rates are escalating. Most research is directed towards expensive drugs that target late stages of the disease and enrich drug companies, but do not prevent cancer. One of the leading causes of cancer is a regular consumption of refined sugar and oils, such as soft drinks, chips, store bought cookies and pastries, deep fried foods (french fries, donuts), prepared meats including hot dogs sausages, bacon and ham, fast foods, food additives dairy and red meat. Yes, that’s a mouthful…..a mouthful that shouldn’t be going into your mouth!
Research has increasingly pointed to a link between the nutritional status of Americans and the chronic diseases that plague them, but the medical community still isn’t taking the time to educate their patients on the connection between food and their disease. As a matter of fact, most medical schools still fail to meet the minimum recommended 25 hours of instruction on nutrition. If all this research points to nutrition as the root of all chronic diseases, why isn’t your doctor spending time with you discussing it. In other words, your physician is treating your chronic disease with two hands tied behind his back because he has no training in the link between chronic disease and nutrtion.
Fortunately, because of all the press around the connection between food and disease, Americans are educating themselves and not putting all their trust into doctors. Diet is just as essential as drugs or any other treatment your doctor is prescribing. Follow your doctor’s orders but make sure diet is part of the healing plan.
I thought a lot about my Cousin Tony when I wrote this blog today. He lost both of his parents to chronic diseases, and he worries about dying young just like them. Fortunately, he knows the importance of diet and his health. He wrote a very inspiring song called “Change”. It seems like the perfect song to share with all of you today because we all have to dig deep to make extraordinary changes. You will find a link to the song following today’s recipe.
On to food. Today I made this delightfully light and refreshing rice noodle salad. It only takes about 30 minutes or less to prepare and worth every minute. Hope you enjoy it as much as I did! Happy to have another day… plant strong!
- 5 oz. dried rice noodles
- 1/2 cup lime juice
- 3 tbsp low-sodium soy sauce
- 3 1/2 tbs dark brown sugar
- 3 cloves garlic, minced (1 tbsp)
- 1 thai chili or jalapeno, seeded and thinly sliced (I used two but I like spicy)
- 1 1/2 cups thinly sliced purple cabbage or radicchio
- 1 1/2 cups julienned cucumbers
- 1 cup chopped fresh basil
- 6 scallions sliced thin – white part only
- 1 8 ounce packaged tofu, cut into small cubes
- 1/4 cup cornstarch
- 1/4 cup additional low-sodium soy to marinate tofu
- 1/2 cup almond slivers
- Place tofu cubes in bowl – cover with 1/4 cup soy sauce and let marinate
- Whisk together lime juice, brown sugar, soy sauce, garlic and chile in bowl until sugar is dissolved
- Toss together cabbage, carrot, cucumbers, tofu, basil and green onion. Toss with some of the lime mixture until evenly coated.
- Remove tofu from marinade and toss with cornstarch. Over medium heat saute tofu until browned. Add to cabbage mixture and toss. Add more lime mixture if needed.
- Cook noodles according to directions
- Divide noodles among serving plates. Place cabbage tofu mixture on top. Serve sprinkled with nuts.