Monthly Archives: November 2014

2014 – Year of the Vegan Thanksgiving Dinner At Our Home!

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Vegan Thanksgiving 2014Granted, my photography isn’t anything to brag about. But today’s dinner was! It has been more than two years since I decided to limit my intake of meat and meat products to no more than 5% of my diet as a result of reading Campbell & Campbell’s The China Study. This was the first year our family (my husband and I this year) held a totally vegan Thanksgiving Dinner.

Based on one of the sites from an earlier post, I decided to use the link from Oh! She Glows! (http://ohsheglows.com/2013/11/26/3-course-vegan-and-gluten-free-holiday-menu-step-by-step/) because she offered a three-course meal which sounded pretty good.

Starting with the shopping list, the entire meal cost us less than $ 46. Only one item (Arrowroot) proved to be challenging to find – finally found the last one in the store! Interestingly, one of my friends called earlier this week bemoaning the cost of Thanksgiving ingredients – she was kidding and said she handed her paycheck over to the grocery cashier! One of my students who works at the local grocery admitted customers are ringing up $ 300 – $ 400 of food for Thanksgiving.

The site recommended making a number of dishes ahead of time. Instead I decided to make everything Thanksgiving Day. Starting around 9:00 a.m., the entire meal was complete and on our table for two before 1:30 p.m. I do not feel exhausted by the experience – am glad I have a food processor so I didn’t have to chop everything by hand!

The 2014 Vegan meal started with my husband, Bob. Because it was going to be the two of us this year, I suggested we could grab a traditional cooked Thanksgiving meal and eat it on Thursday. Impressively, he suggested the vegan option – saying he feels so much better when he eats vegan meals.

Keeping his suggestion in mind, knowing my husband is not particularly enthusiastic about drastic changes, and he is unafraid of letting me know his opinion, I was somewhat hesitant, albeit, excited to create this vegan meal.

Well, we ate the meal, and the conclusion is: IT WAS WONDERFUL! We feel full, not stuffed. Each dish was tasty with a variety of flavors. For a ‘convenience’ cook like me, the meal was straight-forward to make.

We plan to replicate the meal when all the kids come home for Christmas – it will be our Christmas Eve dinner with a Traditional American Meal for Christmas Day. I look forward to the response from our adult children!

P.S. I am thankful for each and every one of you – hope you had a pleasant day!

Vegan Thanksgiving

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Family, Football, Feasting – all describing what we love about this time of year.

And we can have all of that and stay vegan at the same time! Why worry about creating your own special meal when so many others have perfected the event. Check out any one of the following links. I know I’m going to be thankful for so many healthy options for our Thanksgiving meal!

http://ohsheglows.com/2013/11/26/3-course-vegan-and-gluten-free-holiday-menu-step-by-step/

http://www.vegkitchen.com/tips/vegetarian-thanksgiving/

http://www.foodandwine.com/ultimate-thanksgiving/vegan-thanksgiving

http://www.food.com/recipes/vegan-thanksgiving?pn=4

http://www.eatingwell.com/recipes_menus/recipe_slideshows/vegetarian_thanksgiving_recipes

The Impact of Influence

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(photo by DepositPhotos.com)

Since 2012, my diet has been limited to no more than 5% animal product which includes all meats and dairy. For me, the change was fairly easy as in 2003 my diet had to change for immediate health reasons after my diagnosis of celiac. In 2003, I immediately stopped eating breads, pastas, cookies, cakes, most processed food, and within one week my dire health predictions completely turned around. Based on the quickness of my change in health after a change to gluten-free diet in 2003, I had no problem eliminating protein based meats and dairy from my diet in 2012.

My loving husband enjoys his Steak’n’Shake meat sandwich along with the extra-large milkshake. A Five Guys burger would be a perfect meal for him.

While reading The China Study by Campbell & Campbell, I read different passages to my husband who had the same reactions I did to the results of the years of research. However, he did enjoy his meat and dairy for the past two years.

From meal to meal, he would acquiesce and eat the meatless, cold, (and delicious!) stuffed peppers. Or join me in a dinner at a vegetarian restaurant. He may comment on how good my hummus tastes compares to other versions.

But within the last few weeks, my husband has actively sought out meat-free and dairy-free products – get this – even when I am not around! At first, he reviewed the labels on processed food for gluten-free wording – he said he wanted me to be able to eat the item as well as him. This makes sense in a home of two individuals.

Lately, not only selection of processed food, but also selection of dishes when we eat out (often) and when we cook (not so often) has been more vegan than traditional American meals!

Had we been able to find a can of fava beans in our small community, my loving spouse was most excited about the prospect of making foul madammas for dinner last night! He suggested the spaghetti squash option for our spaghetti lunch.

He affirms how much better he feels, how much more energy he feels, and importantly how much ‘stuff’ his body is able to process and release with vegan meals.

We still visit our favorite restaurant in the world – Bern’s Steak House in Tampa – for a delectable steak from time to time. However, know that as you are moving more and more to a vegan lifestyle, you are silently impacting others who are watching to find out what happens.