Glutton of vegan sites

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Trying to be careful to limit intake of protein to 5% of my diet takes time. When you add the dietary restriction of no gluten, creativity has to come to the surface to have tasty meals. Lately, I have found many wonderful websites with fabulous recipes to share. Here are a few – please post additional sites as you discover them as well. Specifically, any gluten-free vegan sites with tasty, easy recipes! To your good health!

http://www.MyVega.com

http://www.HeatherNicholds.com

http://www.MyWholeFoodLife.com

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It’s not just about the rats

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The other day someone said, “The book The China Study could be relevant except the diet only works on rats.”

The rat reference relates to an obscure scientific experiment Dr. Campbell found in 1970 from India (pg. 36-37). Two groups of rats were both infected with a fungus-produced toxin nicknamed AF (aflatoxin) which produced liver cancer in rats. One group of rats was fed a diet of 20% protein and the second group of rats ate a diet of no more than 5% protein. Every rat on the 20% protein diet developed liver cancer while NOT ONE rat on the 5% protein diet developed neither liver cancer or signs of beginning cancer development.

This one experiment became a turning point for Dr. Campbell and his research on the human need for protein in our diet.

It is not just the rats. Dr. T. Colin Campbell authored more than 300 research papers. The China Study was the result of work among Cornell University, Oxford University, and the Chinese Academy of Preventative Medicine. Work included studies mandated by past China premier Chou EnLai in the early 1970s involving over 650,000 people (pg. 69, 70).

Dr. Campbell worked on investigation of Philippine children’s incidence of liver cancer due to AF, a study of 800 Chinese women on bone density and osteoporosis (pg. 20-22).

The short story of The China Study is both the highest incidence of death in America (heart disease, cancer, stroke, diabetes, and Alzheimer’s disease) as well as the most expensive chronic ailments are largely prevented with a plant-based diet (pg. 20-22).

Even though Dr. Campbell’s research began with a protein study of rats’ diets, and he continued studying the effect of diet on rats, his numerous studies, meta-analysis (collection of other studies), and studies of homogeneous populations such as China more than prove the importance of plant-based diet to reduce the number of illnesses, increase our longevity and quality of life.

Overworked and smart

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The other day at work one of our team members fell ill. Luckily another team member was EMT trained, called an ambulance, and the ill team member was taken to a nearby hospital where his blood pressure was found to be too high for comfort.

The hospital kept our team member there for three days – no idea of cause or cure – until his blood pressure returned to within normal range. The patient was released – he returned to work site to pick up his car and on the drive home began to fell ill again – so he pulled into the emergency room of the next hospital on his route home.

Again, the second hospital staff offered no cause or cure, but kept him until his blood pressure returned to a ‘safe’ range.

So our team member returned to his car to finally drive home after a week of hospital stays. Except, (you guessed it), he didn’t make it home. Thankfully, a third hospital accepted him to help him lower his blood pressure which had spiked again.

Again, no cause – no cure.

Two weeks later I saw our team member – he had lost considerable weight, his blood pressure was in the normal range and he reported feeling better than ever. What was his solution?

Because no one could tell him what was happening to his body, he decided to research – and chose a vegan diet. He still was unsure what happened to cause his blood pressure to spike. But the results were clear: he felt well enough to stay out of the hospitals, to return to work, and to enjoy life another day. Smart.

One new vegan meal a week

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Sometimes, does it feel so hard to think about being a true vegan? What should I cook tonight? Can I possibly eat one more salad?

Well, the recipe below says you can eat an taste-bud delighting salad, stay vegan, and be full! This recipe was added to our weekly vegan menu. It’s quick, it’s delicious, and it’s filling. Let me know what you think.

Artichoke & Mushroom Salad (adapted from Kay Plahutnik of Surprise, Arizona’s recipe)

1 Tbsp red wine vinegar.

1 tsp. Dijon mustard

1/4 C oil (you can use olive oil – I tried mine with avocado oil and it was splendid!)

2 C sliced white mushrooms

1/2 tsp. herbes de Provence

1/4 C port wine

1 – 12 ox jar marinated artichoke hearts, drained and halved or quartered

1/3 C pitted olives, sliced

salt & pepper

5 oz baby spinach

1 C cherry tomatoes, quartered

1.  Small bowl, whisk vinegar and mustard. Slowly add 3 Tbsp oil

2. Pour 1 Tbsp oil in skillet over medium heat. Add mushrooms, cook, stirring until they release their liquid (~4 min). Add herbs and wine; cook until wine evaporates, stirring occasionally.

3. Add artichokes and olives to skillet. Cook, stirring, until warm (1-2 minutes). Remove pan from heat, season with salt & pepper.

4. In a large bowl, toss spinach & vinegarette – divide among 4 plates. Spoon artichoke mixture on top. Add tomatoes and serve. YUM!

The China Study Cookbook

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Holidays are over and spring is around the corner!

For Christmas, one of my sons gave me ‘The China Study Cookbook.’ Since then, we tried different recipes and enjoyed the results! Because one of our sons live nearby (with adorable wife and precious granddaughter), we bring the new cookbook and ingredients over to their home for Sunday meal – it is a great way to test a number of great recipes and leave leftovers for the new parents.

So far, we ate from Appetizers & Salads, Entrees, Side Dishes, and Desserts and loved nearly every dish created. I avoid the recipes with gluten for me – there are lots of gluten-free options available.

Check the cookbook out and let me know your favorites!

 

 

 

Celebrating Thanksgiving as a Vegan

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                Last week, our office sponsored a buffet social where all staff brought their favorite Thanksgiving dish. We had two turkeys, potatoes, green bean casserole, rolls, and lots of desserts. As one of my co-workers and I walked into the feast, he remarked to me how difficult it is to stay on a diet during the holidays. I paused and asked, “Why?” He said there were too many tasty items to eat and he couldn’t help but stuff himself.

                After thinking about his statement, I realized there were two parts about feasting with family and friends that defined the feast: plates piled high and the ability to return to the buffet table for seconds. Based on those comforts, my recommendations were two-fold: (1) select the absolute smallest plate offered; and (2) fill your plate to overflowing with vegetables and fruit first – and refill your plate later with the same. With a smaller plate, it will be filled quickly, allowing a taste (tablespoonful) of the favorites like turkey, stuffing, gravy, etc. After you have eaten two plates of vegetables (with smaller portions of stuffing, etc.), help yourself to one of the healthiest dessert options – this year we had lots of fruit trays – yea! Then decide if you are still hungry for anything else.

Let me know if this worked for you for this holiday season!

Really?

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The American Heart Association and the American College of Cardiology changed the standards for who should be taking these cholesterol-lowering drugs on Tuesday, November 12, 2013.

How come so little emphasis is being placed on diet and exercise, instead a focus on controlling the effect of improper diet and inadequate exercise? It seems as if we gave up on one another.

Very sad.