Posts Tagged ‘family’

How To Beat Depression and Look Twenty Years Younger

Sunday, October 16th, 2011

Deborah and her husband Gerry enjoy some impressive banana squash they harvested

Deborah Pageau Hit Rock Bottom On Health and Found a Simple Way Out

In spreading the message that fish contains worm larvae, I posted my blog on this topic on VegSource. Deborah Pageau replied from Canada with her story of witnessing live worm larvae wriggling in a fried fish on a Friday “fish and chip”night.

I immediately wanted to know more and share Deborah’s experience. Here she generously shares how she, her husband, and her daughter eliminated a range of health problems by eating a whole foods, plant-based diet. Yes, whole – vegan junk foods are rarely (more…)

Why Now Is a Great Time to Be Vegan

Monday, May 30th, 2011

Galia and David Myron enjoy drinks out of fresh coconuts. Plant-based can be so enjoyable!

Galia Myron Tracks Generations As Whole Food, Plant-Based Diets Flourish

Want to know more about the health, food habits, values, preferences, or sex lives of Generations X, Y, or Z? How about Baby Boomers or Matures, women vs. men, or green trends? Galia Myron, publisher of the richly comprehensive site demodirt.com, reports on every aspect of demographics as she both follows and observes a vegan path. She especially enjoys covering trends on plant-based diets, animal rights, environmental issues, and health.

Galia observes that, a few years ago, the fastest growing vegan group was boomer men who were motivated by health considerations. Now she finds more young people choosing animal-free diets for ethical reasons. Marketers are also (more…)

How We Can Eat Our Way Out of the Deficit

Monday, February 21st, 2011

Until we change the way we eat, getting health care costs and the deficit under control will be a losing struggle.

Surging Health Care Costs Come Right Out of Your Pocket

The health care costs draining your personal budget come in two pieces: the amount you see directly as health care, and the hidden costs embedded in taxes, salary you don’t get, and the cost of virtually everything you buy. Health care costs gobble one out of every six dollars of the GDP (Gross Domestic Product), with that percentage rising every year. Even Warren Buffett, the wealthy business man, called health care costs a “tapeworm” dragging down the economy.

The direct costs are obvious. Milliman, a leading actuarial firm, reported that health care for a family of four in 2010 in the U.S. averaged a staggering $18,074. Of this, employers paid an average (more…)

How To Make Kids Love Their Veggies

Saturday, October 30th, 2010

Miguel Villarreal’s Passion for Gleaning Blazes the Path

Miguel Villarreal holds a box of tomatoes that will be the next day's lunch for these lucky students who helped glean the vegetables. Their classmates benefit as well from the local organic goodness.

Now in his ninth year as Food Services Director at Novato Unified School District, Miguel Villarreal muses about the kids under his watch. The students who were first graders when he started are now high school students with one big advantage over many of their peers.

These kids never had candy and soda at school. Miguel got rid of that junk food right away. He has also phased out red meat, and believes Novato Unified is the only school district in the country that does not serve it. Instead, Novato students have nourished (more…)

Barbecue with a Side of Chemicals

Saturday, June 19th, 2010

Killer Reasons to Break Up with Your Grill This Summer

The start of warm summer breezes and promise of the Fourth of July inspire many to drag out their barbecue grill. Charcoal and lighter

Barbeques deliver a double dose of dangerous chemicals. These hazards get into your body through your lungs and your digestive tract.

fluid join the bestseller list. Outdoor cooking sets the stage for traditional get-togethers with family and friends.

This romance with barbecues has a dark side that few know about. After all, information about polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAH) is obscured by millions of dollars of ads and happy images for grilled meat.

As is the case for most toxic chemicals, the long-term health effects of PAH are poorly understood, so easy to ignore. Yet PAH is an insidious public health nightmare that can invade your own life and the next generation.

Truth in labeling would require an explicit warning on bags of charcoal and packs of meat and fish. “Eating grilled or smoked animal foods can cause DNA mutation, cancer, and lower intelligence in your children.” Wide knowledge of these dangers might inspire many to consider alternatives, or at least make informed decisions.

Polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons are a product of incomplete combustion of materials that contain carbon. Burn tobacco, wood, oil, gasoline, coal, garbage – or meat and fish – and PAHs will form. Over 100 varieties of PAHs can menace our health and the environment.

A widespread nutrition myth touts that the major harm from (more…)

Twelve Ways to Make Cooking Fun and Easy

Monday, May 31st, 2010

Whip Up Health and Weight Loss Success in Minutes

Imagine if someone actually paid you to be healthy. Sent you a handful of dollar bills every morning to have fun. That’s what cooking

Even a child can cook simple foods. In fact, food prep can be a fun family experience.

your own food is like.

Compared to eating out, cooking whole foods at home saves so much money that you can bank the difference. And even if you dread the task of preparing food now, a few simple insights and strategies can make the kitchen a favorite room.

In this era of manufactured, salt-drenched offerings in restaurants and supermarkets, cooking is a survival skill. If you flinch from preparing food, your health and weight will suffer.

Cooking is a major survival skill in the modern world. So you may as well learn to enjoy it. Here are twelve tips to get started on preparing your own home-cooked meals using (more…)

Healthy People 2010: The Decade that Wasn’t

Friday, January 8th, 2010

Let’s Reach Our Goals, Not Lower Them

Imagine you are on a team that is not winning nearly as many games as you’d like to. So you set some goals that will get you to first place if you achieve them. But your team has no game plan and just practices at random. When the big game comes, your score has actually deteriorated.

What do you do now? Revisit how to achieve your goals? Set up a realistic plan? Imagine that instead of continuing to pursue your dreams, you decide to simply pick less able teams to play against so your problems won’t be so obvious.

Few would want to play on such a lackluster team. This strategy of diminishing goals does seem to appeal to the nation’s health navigators, though.

Every ten years, the federal government sets health goals for the upcoming decade. From 2000 through 2010 though, the country did not fare very well in getting to optimum health. In fact, only about one in five of the goals for Healthy People 2010 appears to have been met.

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, responsible for the Healthy People program that started in the 1970s, will likely set lower goals for 2020 than it did for 2010. This is the official response to the nation’s poor performance in achieving the targets set for 2010.

Our children rely on us to point the way to lifelong health and vigor

Our children rely on us to point the way to lifelong health and vigor

As a country, we ended up going downhill on critical goals. Most importantly, obesity increased from about a quarter of all adults in 2000 to 34 percent in 2010. Obesity is the result of poor food choices, and there is no coordinated effort to educate people on the power of whole foods.

Our children are relying on us to shoot for optimum health. Let’s aim high and make a plan to get there. Plant-based nutrition is a major part of the solution, and would address virtually all goals to reduce chronic illness and risk factors. With such a straightforward way to get to the top, why settle for anything less? In the meantime, why wait for the government to wake up. You can move forward and improve your health, and your family’s, today.  Your next meal is the starting point for your own Healthy People program.

Intrigued? Now you can use our Whole Foods Blog Finder to target informative, fun postings on plant-based nutrition. Quick information at no cost!

Blog by Janice Stanger, Ph.D. Janice authored The Perfect Formula Diet, a nutrition book built on sustainable food choices. Enjoy six kinds of whole foods for permanent, hunger-free weight loss and health.

A Whole Foods New Year’s Tradition that Tastes Great

Friday, January 1st, 2010

Black-eyed Peas and Greens Are Fun and Healthy

The Southern tradition of eating black-eyed peas and greens on New Year’s Day is now widespread. Prosperity and luck throughout the year are the promised benefits. The peas (actually a kind of bean) symbolize coins, while the greens stand for dollars.

Eating this combo at New Year’s started about the time the Civil War was ending. Union soldiers spared the humble black-eyed peas as they confiscated or destroyed other crops in the South.

Black-eyed peas are the stars on New Year's

Black-eyed peas are the stars on New Year's

Had the troops understood the outstanding health benefits of black-eyed peas they might have targeted this food as well. This legume shares the same health benefits as other beans, filling you up and satisfying your appetite. The beans are a nutritional powerhouse, rich in minerals, complex carbohydrates, fiber, vitamins, protein, and phytochemicals.

Just as important, black-eyed peas and greens are easy to cook and there are so many fun variations on the basic dish. Here is the recipe I made for 2010.

Any Day of the Year Black-Eyes Peas and Greens

The ingredients are: (more…)

My Best Decade Ever: Life with Meaning

Thursday, December 24th, 2009

A Ten-Year Adventure in Plant-Based Eating

I feel younger, healthier, and more vigorous now, when the clock is within striking distance of 2010, then I did back in 1999. In that year, I was more worried about my health and weight than I was about Y2K. Aging felt like it was overpowering me. Even though I was only 47, I was tired of coping with chronic pain and fatigue, weight that had a mind of its own, and ever-tightening clothes.

In 1999 I was meat-free, but still ate eggs and dairy products. I knew the remaining animal foods were at the root of my health issues, but simply did not feel ready to give them up early in that year. Partly habit held me back, partly fear, and partly laziness. What would the “center of the meal” be without some kind of animal foods?

I remember the last time I ate eggs for breakfast. They lay in my stomach all day like a chunk of cement. Finally about 4 in the afternoon I could feel them clearing and moving on to make room for me to breathe. I decided right then to never eat chickens’ reproductive materials again.

Finally, the big breakthrough for my health came at the end of 1999. I collected enough plant-based cookbooks and recipes to know I could make

Me hiking in gorgeous Northern California this summer

Me hiking in gorgeous Northern California this summer

satisfying food all day with many delicious alternatives. The last animal food to go for me was ice cream. I discovered soy-based frozen desserts in yummy flavors and never looked back. My prefernce quickly changed to these new frozen desserts, even if they tasted a little different at first.

Within months of going plant-based, I lost 25 pounds and have never regained them! My chronic pain episodes, sinusitis, and ear infections evaporated. Every day I felt more energetic than the last. How unexpected but how welcome.

Ever since 2000, I’ve felt like I’m aging in reverse. My body is detoxifying – this process takes years, not weeks. Toxic chemicals stored in fat are well incorporated and dissolved in the body. If you are still in the throes of an animal-based diet, you have no idea how fantastic it feels to give your body the time it needs to truly heal.

I keep setting new standards for myself in terms of health. This has been a gradual and highly fulfilling process over the last decade. Watching my two daughters also choose a plant-based diet, with vast improvements in their mood and energy, has also been deeply satisfying.

I am physically active every single day now. I’ve deleted virtually all manufactured foods from my diet, including trans fats, bottled oils, chips and any deep fried foods, white bread and bagels, and (more…)

Not-too-sweet Cranberry Sauce: Here’s the Secret Ingredient

Friday, December 18th, 2009

Home Made Cranberry Sauce that Will Wow Your Guests

If you grew up eating canned, jellied cranberry sauce, as I did, you have hopefully already discovered how amazing the home made version of this perpetual favorite can be. No holiday gathering would be complete without the deep red and tart richness of this treat.

This cranberry sauce was so good that my friends started eating it before I could get my camera out

This cranberry sauce was so good that my friends started eating it before I could get my camera out

Luckily, fresh cranberries are in season. Leave the cans in the store and bring home the ingredients for your own taste treat. While you can discover hundreds of recipes on the Internet, I have put together the following simple recipe that cooks in ten minutes. Even people who usually don’t like cranberry sauce will eat a plate of this.

Recipe for not-too-sweet cranberry sauce:

Ingredients

4 cups of cranberries (this is the amount in a 12 ounce package)

¾ cup water

½ cup sugar (see below) (more…)