Tag Archives: The china study

Guest Blogger: Vedged Out – 20 Reasons Why Going Vegan Sucks

19 Sep

Please welcome back a vegan blogger who has a new project going on.  This blog pos is from Somer, formerly of Good Clean Food, she has a new blog called Vedged Out. Here she is in her own words, “I went vegan for health reasons 9 months ago in January. Since then I’ve lost the 20 extra pounds I was carrying around, without dieting or counting calories. I don’t have to work to maintain my weight anymore. I am completely off prescription drugs and my Ulcerative Colitis is in full remission. I’ve never felt better, and I know all of this is a direct result of my diet. I wish I would have known years ago that I could heal my own body with what I was putting into my mouth. It’s really amazing that the cure I was looking for was harnessed through plants.” Welcome Somer!

1. You start behaving like a Mormon Missionary and proselytize the benefits of a plant-based diet to everyone you know with copies of Forks Over Knives and The China Study. (Count em, 27 converts to date)

2. You spend so much time in the kitchen that you think “Maybe just this once pre-soaking my pinto beans ISN’T necessary.” Then later, you and everyone in a 12 mile radius of you seriously regrets you didn’t take the time to pre-soak.

3. You get all crunchy and granola like and start making your own soap and deodorant.

4. You get involved in things like the Virtual Vegan Potluck and you consider getting your first facebook account. ever. so that you can hang out in the top secret VVP batcave with the coolest co-horts ever, Annie and Jason.

5. You become one of those obsessed people (we’re victims, really) who can’t stop posting food porn or yet ANOTHER way to use cashew cheez in a recipe.

6. You lose weight even though you no longer count calories and you are forced to go out and buy an entirely new wardrobe.

7. After races, you recover ridiculously faster than you used to, so no-one feels sorry for you and you don’t get to take an “extra rest day” afterwards.

8. You feel like you know and love some of your blogging buddies (people you have never actually met) more than your next door neighbor.

9. You become star struck for the first time ever and start stalking celebrity Vegan Chefs like AJ and Ramses.

10. You have so much produce in your fridge, that fitting in yet another box of organic spinach in there becomes a precarious circus act. Things like ‘ears of corn’ topple out onto your head every time you open the door.

11. All of the money you saved by getting off prescription drugs goes towards your organic produce habit. You feel compelled to defend organic foods like an errant family member despite current evidence against it, because you are what you eat.

12. You start to feel “Dietarily Superior” to everyone who’s not plant based.

13. You have less no constipation, so your regular reading of “Runner’s World Magazine” gets completely cut out of your schedule.

14. Even though you are all ready a dietary outcast (1-2% of the world is vegan), you still sometimes consider going raw, high-alkaline, gluten-free or all of the above to further alienate yourself at social gatherings and restaurants.

15. You sadly realize that even though being plant-based has significantly reduced animal suffering and your carbon footprint, it has not cured your cankles or cellulite.

16. You have more kitchen gadgets than anyone you know but you can’t stop buying more, resulting in a severely receding counter-top space.

17. Your children get harassed at school because of the contents of their lunch box. Bully Child: “I thought you said your family didn’t eat meat, why are you eating a Turkey sandwich?” My child: “Um, that’s Tofurky.” Bully Child: “What’s a Tofurky?My Child to me: “Mom, do I really have to drink a green smoothie everyday at lunch? Everyone stares at me!” (Actual comments) 😦

18. You feel like you’ve broken up just a little bit with some of your closest friends because you don’t share the same values regarding foods anymore. And truth be told, they probably think you’re a little crazy.

19. You feel compelled to blog constantly about your plant based devotion. So much so that you decide to ditch your best friends over at Good Clean Food and get your own dang blog. Sorry girls.

20. You get overly excited when you have a new recipe to share, as if it’s going to change the world! Well, just maybe it will, one plate at a time.

Guest Blogger: An Unrefined Vegan

29 Feb

Our newest guest blogger is Annie, writer of, An Unrefined Vegan. Below is her post titled The Vegan Option. 

About Annie in her own words: “I’m an avid home cook and baker; on-again off-again artist; slow but dedicated runner; health nut; aspiring yogini; devourer of crossword puzzles; blogger and animal lover who has settled in rural Oklahoma after living all over the world.  Fast Food Nation convinced me to become a vegetarian over seven years ago and The China Study nudged me into veganism – a truly wonderful place to be.”

New Yorker Cartoon

From the February 13 & 20, 2012 edition of The New Yorker

In November 2011, I published an article on Technorati called Misguided Eating: The Nose to Toes Food Trend, which promptly sank into oblivion.  But I’m not finished with the topic.  And that’s because what inspired the Technorati article continues to inspire me: our fascination with meat.  This time around my inspiration comes from a local (and I mean, a very local) paper.  The kind of paper that has lots of photos of junior high sporting events and interviews with 95-year old veterans celebrating birthdays at the retirement home.  Don’t forget the crime reports of petty thefts and break-ins.  There’s all kinds of interesting information to be gleaned from small town newspapers.  For instance:

A few days ago while I was preparing lunch, Kel was entertaining me by reading aloud from the newspaper.  He came across the meals menu for the local school area and he knew I’d get a kick (i.e., my blood pressure would soar) out of it.  Sample Breakfast items included: cinnamon roll, strudel, a variety of (dairy) milks, breakfast pizza, sausage.  Sample Lunch items included: breaded fish, Frito pie, beef stew, cheeseburger, grilled cheese, cheese sticks.  Two things struck me: the menu has changed little from when I was in school; and it is still spectacularly unhealthy – heavy on meat and cheese, sugar, refined grains and oily, fried foods.  Even the vegetable items are cooked with meat (lima beans and ham, for instance) or battered and fried.  Each day there is the “main” menu item and an alternative.  Maybe something for the non-meat eaters?  No.  The alternatives are as wretched as the main items.  Couldn’t schools at the minimum provide a few healthy alternatives?  How about, for instance, a vegan option?

What we are very successfully doing is raising the next generation to eat as poorly as we now do, to place animal products at the center of their diets and to learn to tolerate vegetables only if they are fried in fat or cooked with meat.  We are grooming our children for a litany of health problems (some of these kids already have Type II diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol) long before they reach middle age.  They will become, like us, dependent on pills to “manage” their entirely diet-controllable diseases.  We are teaching them to view vegetables as side dishes and animals as products.  We are encouraging them to be ignorant of the origins of their food and to be senseless to the pain and suffering from which their chicken nuggets and hamburgers are produced.  It’s unnecessary, willfully ignorant and short-sighted.  And PS: We can easily figure out which industries are subsidizing the school lunch programs.  Money is more important than health and ethics.  The following excerpt is from the March edition of the Nutrition Action Health Letter:

School Meals.  In January 2011, the U.S. Department of Agriculture proposed long-overdue improvements to subsidized school meals, requiring less salt, fewer fries, and more fruit, vegetables and whole grains.

That spelled bad news for sellers of pizzas, fries, Tater Tots, and the like.  So they quickly got their pals in Congress not only to block the USDA’s plan to limit how often kids could be served potatoes, but to classify pizza as a vegetable.  (Isn’t it amazing what a shmear of tomato sauce can do?)

Despite a roar of outrage from the media, members of Congress once again sided with their campaign contributors.

The question is: why do we as a nation remain so short-sighted?  Is the overwhelming evidence for adopting a plant-based diet over an animal-based diet not enough? I haven’t even touched on the environmental impact of “food” animals – nor the horror of the miserable lives and senseless deaths of these same animals.

I am not one to advocate that the government dictate what or how we should eat – they’ve spectacularly botched the job thus far and frankly, the less government intrusion in my life, the better.  And I believe strongly in personal responsibility.  But since they have claimed the job of feeding our children while those children are in school, shouldn’t our government do so more responsibly – with the goal of raising healthy, strong, informed citizens?  We are an educated nation.  We have an infinite amount of health information at our fingertips.  There is no excuse to continue to eat the way that we do – to continue to compromise our health and the health of those too young to understand how the food they eat affects their growing bodies.  We must do everything we can from inside the home and within the community.  Children must be raised to respect not only their bodies, but to respect the lives and bodies of those that lack the voices and means to speak for themselves.  Start in your own home.  Vote with your shopping list – and send your kid to school with a healthy, cruelty-free lunch.