Wednesday, February 26, 2014

Vegan Trial #1


Other than having the flu virus for the last 3 weeks which delayed my education in veganism, I have learned a tremendous amount about the vegan-style way of life. According to the International Vegetarian Union, "a vegan diet includes avoiding all animal products and their derivatives such as milk or milk powder, eggs, butter and honey" (

See link for "My First Vegan Grocery List" which is very helpful for starting Vegan-ers:

Foods in the "go":

1. All fresh fruit

2. All fresh vegetables

3. Whole wheat grains (must check! A lot of brands DO contain animal products)

4. Brown rice, pastas (egg-free: whole-wheat, spinach, rice, artichoke, tomato, etc.), sweet potatoes, quinoa, barley, millet, buckwheat, rye, etc. (still exploring here)

5. Beans/lentils/peas

6. Nuts & seeds (nut butters, flaxseed, chia, etc.)

7. Soybeans/soy substitutes

8. Water, water, water, water, water, infinity symbol!

9. Almond, coconut, soy, rice, oat milk

10. Earth Balance margarine

11. Vegenaise Mayo

12. Boca, Tofurky, Trader Joe's, Quorn, Luna Bars (still looking for more meal replacement products!)

13. Any food strictly labeled "vegan"

14. Olive oil

15. Some high fiber cereals (Kashi)

16. Tempeh (a cake-like soy-based product originally from Indonesia- still on the "to try" list)

17. Vegan supplements: B12, Vitamin D, possibly Calcium (easy to get through dark veggies and food)
18. Bragg's Apple Cider Vinegar (1-3 Tbsp/day in 6 oz of warm water)

Interesting items that are NOT vegan:

1. Gelatin: Supplements that contain a gelatin capsule (made from animals)- must specify "vegan" on label

2. Honey: Bees= animals! Watch out for products that seem vegan, but contain this sweet source of animal product (my favorite almond honey butter :(- use Madhava Light Agave Nectar as a helpful substitute

3. Most alcohols (use to search vegan beer, wine, liquor- Yay! All Menage a Trois reds= vegan friendly :)

4. Chocolate...milk :)...sorry.

Questionable items:

1. BCAA's (branch-chained amino acids- although most are made in a lab, these are the building blocks of animal protein...hmmm)

Recent Vegan Foods I have tried from Whole Foods:

1. Vegan Iron Supplement (5 out of 5 stars)

2. RAW Meal Replacement (1 out of 5 stars...soooo gritty)

3. Ak Mak Sesame Crackers + Hummus (5 out of 5 stars)

4. Tofurky (0 out of 5 stars...never happening again)

5. Go Veggie! Cheese substitute (3 out of 5 stars...we can find something better!)

6. Madhava Light Agave Nectar (5 our of 5 stars!)

7. Linwoods Ground Flaxseed, Cocoa, Strawberries & Blueberries (4 out of 5...yum!)

8. Barlean's Organic Cold-Pressed Flaxseed Oil (many flavors!) (5 out of 5)

9. Starfruit (4 out of 5 stars)

10. Organic Bananas (5 out of 5 stars- one food I will never buy not-organic again!)

11. Fresh Ground Almond Butter (5 out of 5 stars)

12. Hemp Seeds (4 out of 5 stars- even good to just snack on!)

Let the games continue!

P.S. My mother and father have been eating vegan for the past 10 days have seen their blood pressure return to normal, 8-10 lbs of weight loss, and energy level improvements. Check it out!

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Child 31- The Story of Mary's Meals

From the Creators of "Human Experience", Grass Roots Films Presents "Child 31":

"The immediate hope is surviving."

 "It could have been any one of us..."

"Mary's Meals is an international movement that sets up school feeding projects in communities where poverty and hunger prevent children from gaining an education.

Mary's Meals is a simple idea that works - by providing a daily meal in a place of education, chronically poor children are attracted to the classroom where they can gain a basic education that provides an escape route from poverty.

Over 800,000 children receive Mary's Meals every school day. The average cost to feed a child for a whole school year is £10.70 / €12.40 / $16.80."

See website:

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Buses to Coffee Talk (from Jan. 30)

Today my thoughts lie
Deep in Coffee Talk
And holistic friendship-
Pulling me to memories
Of Africa and Peace Corps
And the selfless-endeavor
I came to crave: Tsavorite.

Two years time feels lifted
From this ever-evolving life and love,
Yet it keeps me close
As friends remain friends...
No notice needed.

"The Vegan's 100 Food List"

I just finished the documentary "Vegucated" (2010) this morning (see:, and have decided to start exploring veganism for the next 7 days.

I found a food list to start from a website that does not seem to be particularly research-based, but sets the pace as far as its counterparts are concerned. As much as I have loved learning about nutrition in the last few years the, "Animal Liberation Front", is an entirely different ball game. Let's see what we can find.

As copied from:

The Vegan's Hundred

Here’s what I want you to do:

Copy this list into your blog or social networking site profile, including these instructions.
2) Bold all the items you’ve eaten.
3) Cross out or italicize any items that you would never consider eating.
4) Optional extra: Post a comment on this post linking to your results.

The HHL Vegan Hundred:

1. Molasses
2. Cactus/Nopales
3. Scrambled Tofu
4. Grilled Portobella Caps
5. Fresh Ground Horseradish
6. Sweet Potato Biscuits
7. Arepa
8. Vegan Cole Slaw
9. Ginger Carrot Soup
10. Fiddlehead Ferns
11. Roasted Elephant Garlic
12. Umeboshi
13. Almond Butter Toast
14. Aloe Vera
15. H and H Bagel NYC
16. Slow Roasted Butternut Squash
17. White truffle
18. Fruit wine made from something other than grapes
19. Freshly ground wasabi
20. Coconut Milk Ice Cream (not store bought)
21. Heirloom tomatoes
22. Orchard-fresh pressed apple cider
23. Organic California Mango (in season Sept-Oct only)
24. Quinoa
25. Papaya Smoothie
26. Raw Scotch Bonnet (habanero) pepper (just a bite!!
27. Goji Berry Tea
28. Fennel
29. Vegan Chocolate Chip Cookie
30. Radishes and Vegan Buttery Spread
31. Starfruit
32. Oven fresh Sourdough bread
33. Sangria made with premium fruit and juices
34. Sauerkraut
35. Acai Smoothie
36. Blue Foot Mushrooms
37. Vegan Cupcake from Babycakes nyc
38. Sweet Potatoes and Tempeh combo
39. Falafel
40. Spelt Crust Pizza
41. Salt and Pepper Oyster Mushrooms
42. Jicama Slaw
43. Pumpkin Edamame Ginger Dumplings
44. Hemp Milk
45. Rose Champagne
46. Fuyu
47. Raw Avocado-Coconut Soup
48. Tofu Pesto Sandwich
49. Apple-Lemon-Ginger-Cayenne fresh-pressed juice...with Extra Ginger
50. Grilled Seitan
51. Prickly pear
52. Fresh Pressed Almond Milk
53. Concord Grapes off the vine
54. Ramps
55. Coconut Water fresh from a young coconut56. Organic Arugula
57. Vidalia Onion
58. Sampler of organic produce from Diamond Organics
59. Honeycrisp Apple
60. Poi
61. Vegan Campfire-toasted Smores
62. Grape seed Oil
63. Farm fresh-picked Peach
64. Freshly-made pita bread with freshly-made hummus
65. Chestnut Snack Packs
66. Fresh Guava
67. Mint Chocolate Chip Oatmeal Cookies
68. Raw Mallomar from One Lucky Duck, NYC
69. Fried plantains
70. Mache
71. Golden Beets
72. Barrel-Fresh Pickles
73. Liquid Smoke
74. Meyer Lemon
75. Veggie Paella
76. Vegan Lasagna (raw optional)
77. Kombucha
78. Homemade Soy Milk
79. Lapsang souchong
80. Lychee Bellini
81. Tempeh Bacon
82. Sprouted Grain Bread
83. Lemon Pepper Tempeh
84. Vanilla Bean
85. Watercress
86. Carrot you pulled out of the ground yourself

87. Vegan In-Season Fruit Pie
88. Flowers- (honeysuckle for me!)
89. Corn Chowder
90. High Quality Vegan Raw Chocolate
91. Yellow fuzz-free Kiwi
92. White Flesh Grapefruit
93. harissa
94. Coconut Oil
95. Jackfruit
96. Homemade Risotto
97. Spirulina
98. Seedless 'Pixie' Tangerine
99. Gourmet Sorbet, not store bought
100. Fresh Plucked English Peas

Starting Results: 11 out of 100 foods. Ready to try it all. Whole Foods here we come...