Vegan Broccoli Salad

I love it when I want to make something and I magically have all of the ingredients. Well I didn’t have raisins or grapes so I substituted with goji berries.

This is so easy!! It’s kind of like making potato salad except you’re using broccoli.

Ingredients:

  • Broccoli 2 crowns
  • 1/2 cup red onion (use less if it seems like too much.)
  • 1/2 cup pumpkin seeds or sunflower seeds
  • 1/2 cup goji berries (raisins can also be used)
  • 1/2 cup veganaise

Directions

Have you ever made potato salad. Just pretend the broccoli is potatoes and you’re making potato salad. It’s the same concept just with different ingredients.

Chop Broccoli and put onion, pumpkin seeds and goji berries add the veganise and stir. It’s so easy!!

I hope you like this as much as I did. Feel free to follow my blog. I really appreciate it.

Wishing you all the best. Peace is here and now manifest.

Valerie is a Health and Wellness Coach living in Northern California. She encourages everyone to follow their dreams and passions. Valerie enjoys singing and dancing.

Recipe: Creamy Vegan Queso Dip

Originally Published on Thekitchn.com on February 26, 2016 By Gina Eykemans

Recipe Creamy Vegan Queso Dip_1

Let’s be honest — thinking of vegan cheese substitutes leaves something to be desired. Maybe you’ve taken a peek at the vegan cheese options in the grocery stores or even dabbled in coaxing a couple hunks of almond cheese to melt atop slices of bread under the broiler. In my experience, that stuff does not melt and will leave your cheese dreams hopelessly shattered. So when coming up with a creamy vegan queso recipe, I wanted to make sure it was as good as the real thing! No shattered dreams here. We’re dreaming big with veggies, cashews, and a ton of spices — and it’s paying off by the chip-ful.

Recipe Creamy Vegan Queso Dip_2

My husband came into the kitchen while I was prepping the veggies for the queso dip. He asked me what I was making, and when I said, “Um, I’m making queso,” he gave me a quizzical glance and looked very skeptically at the piles of carrots and butternut squash I was chopping. “Where’s the cheese?” he asked. I broke the news that there would be no cheese in this queso. Eventually he gave up on trying to understand my cheese-less antics, and left the kitchen.

As I cooked the veggies with plenty of spices, I heard his voice yelling from the living room, “Oh, gosh. That smells really good!” So I knew I was on the right track. The softened vegetables went into my Vitamix with green chiles, salsa, cashews, almond milk, and a bunch of nutritional yeast to give it that cheesy flavor. The results were mind-blowing. I dipped a spoon in the finished product, tasted it, and smirked a little bit, knowing that this dip could fool any cheese-lover.

Recipe Creamy Vegan Queso Dip_3

I made up a party platter of vegan queso and chips, and called my husband in to the living room to help me “taste test.” After the first bite, we both descended on the dip like a couple of famished hyenas — occasionally stopping to tell each other, with full mouths, how much this dip tasted like the real thing.

Vegan Queso Dip

Makesabout 4 cups; serves about 16

Ingredients

    • 2 tablespoonsolive oil

 

    • 1/2large yellow onion, finely diced

 

    • 3cloves garlic, minced

 

    • 2large carrots, very finely chopped

 

    • 1cup thinly sliced butternut squash

 

    • 2 teaspoonskosher salt, divided

 

    • 1 teaspoonground cumin

 

    • 1/2 teaspoonchili powder

 

    • 1/4 teaspoonfreshly ground black pepper

 

    • 1 cuplow-sodium vegetable broth

 

    • 1(4-ounce) can green chiles, drained

 

    • 1 1/2 cupsunsweetened plain almond milk

 

    • 1raw cashews, soaked for 30 minutes or up to overnight and then drained

 

    • 1/4 cupnutritional yeast

 

    • 1/2 cupchunky tomato salsa or pico de gallo

 

  • 1 tablespoonapple cider vinegar

Optional toppings:

    • Chunky salsa or Rotel

 

    • Pickled jalapeños

 

    • Chopped cherry tomatoes

 

  • Cilantro
 

Instructions

    1. Heat the olive oil in a large saucepan over medium heat until shimmering. Add the onions and garlic and sauté until the onions are soft and the garlic is fragrant.

 

    1. Add the carrots, butternut squash, 1 teaspoon of the salt, cumin, chili powder, and black pepper. Cook, stirring occasionally, for a couple of minutes. Add the vegetable broth and simmer, stirring frequently, until the vegetables are soft and tender. You want them to be soft enough to blend up in a blender without any problems.

 

    1. Transfer the mixture to a high-powered blender. Add the green chiles, almond milk, drained cashews, nutritional yeast, salsa, vinegar, and remaining 1 teaspoon salt. Blend, scraping down the sides as needed, until the mixture has reached a thick and creamy consistency.

 

  1. Taste and adjust the seasoning as needed. If it’s cooled off, transfer to a saucepan and gently warm over low heat to desired temperature. Serve it in a bowl alongside tortilla chips and garnish it with your favorite toppings.

Recipe Notes

Storage: Leftovers can be stored in an airtight container in the refrigerator for up to 5 days.

 
 

Delusions of Organic Tamales in California/Delirios de tamales orgánicos en California

Olive Oil TamalesIt’s Christmas Time and I’m thinking about some vegan tamales and how good they will be.  I had it all figured out with a recipe I found in Decolonize Your Diet.  I was ready to make these heavenly treats.  So I did the normal thing most people do is go to the store and get the ingredients.  No problem or so I thought.

I live in Northern California close to Napa in Solano County.  I went to Nugget market to get some of the ingredients.  I wanted Organic as a Study shows that Organic food has more antioxidants and less pesticides.  I also went to see what kind of corn flour was available.  Of course they had the evil Maseca which has tested positive for glycophosphate.  The same ingredient as in Round Up Pesticides.  The only organic corn I can find was organic polenta. So I thought OK I can get that and then grind it down into a flour with a grinder.  So I bought a grinder.  Cool I’m one step closer to making them.

Es Navidad y estoy pensando en algunos tamales veganos y en lo buenos que serán. Lo tenía todo resuelto con una receta que encontré en Decolonize Your Diet. Estaba listo para hacer estas delicias celestiales. Así que hice lo normal que la mayoría de la gente hace es ir a la tienda y obtener los ingredientes. No hay problema o eso pensé.

Vivo en el norte de California cerca de Napa en el condado de Solano. Fui al mercado de Nugget para obtener algunos de los ingredientes. Quería que lo orgánico, como un estudio, muestra que los alimentos orgánicos tienen más antioxidantes y menos pesticidas. También fui a ver qué tipo de harina de maíz estaba disponible. Por supuesto que tenían la malvada Maseca, que dio positivo por glicofosfato. El mismo ingrediente que en Round Up Pesticides. El único maíz orgánico que pude encontrar fue la polenta orgánica. Así que pensé bien, puedo obtener eso y luego molerlo en una harina con un molinillo. Así que compré un molinillo. Genial, estoy un paso más cerca de hacerlos.

agriculture bright cereal close up

Photo by mali maeder on Pexels.com

Then the date to make them is tomorrow.  So I said hey let’s go get the ingredients.  I bought some corn husks and pasilla peppers, I had the corn and everything else.  I was ready to roll.

VAL,VERONICA SHAWN

Valerie Estrella and Veronica Gonzalez-Bryan have been friends since 1988 when they met at Una clase de Espanol.  This was at Valerie’s Retirement Party in 2017.

So my friend from college, Veronica Gonzalez-Bryan a Information Technology Specialist with the State of California at the Employment Development Department, had made some tamales so I called her up to see how it went.  I also wanted to tell Veronica what I had learned about the Maseca brand.  I was very upset about the choice of options available.  So she asked me the dreaded question.  “Did you get organic corn husks?”  The answer was a big fat no.  How could I have forgotten?  Then I remembered the peppers I bought were not organic either.  I was getting more disappointed by the second.

Entonces la fecha para hacerlos es mañana. Así que dije hey, vamos a buscar los ingredientes. Compré algunas cáscaras de maíz y pasilla, tuve el maíz y todo lo demás. Estaba listo para rodar.

Así que mi amiga de la universidad, Veronica Gonzalez-Bryan, especialista en tecnología de la información del Estado de California en el
 Departamento de Desarrollo de Empleo,hecho algunos tamales, así que la llamé para ver cómo había ido. También quería contarle lo que había aprendido sobre la marca Maseca. Estaba muy molesto por la elección de opciones disponibles. Así que ella me hizo la temida pregunta. "¿Conseguiste cáscaras de maíz orgánico?" La respuesta fue un gran gordo no. ¿Cómo pude haberlo olvidado? Entonces recordé que los pimientos que compré tampoco eran orgánicos. Me estaba decepcionando más por el segundo.

 

It’s really sad the condition of the food that is available in the richest nation in the world.  I guess that’s how they got so rich was by feeding the most basic of food and turned it into frankenfood.  So now I had no organic corn husks, no organic peppers therefore no organic tamales.  And to top it all off after going over all of this situation, I realized that I have to make the tamales from the actual corn.  It’s not corn flour, it’s ground up corn from the inside of the kernels.  So I am so far removed from the process that I have no idea where the actual masa actually comes from.  I am completely ignorant in making tamales and although I am a little embarrassed, it is what it is.  That means I must learn from a master and quit trying to do it myself.  But I want organic corn and I do know of a place in Los Angeles that has organic masa.  It’s time to plant some corn with the quickness!!

But guess what?  Now I am on a mission to make organic vegan tamales.This is for Mis Abuelitas.  This is no longer a joke and let me tell you something.   Give me organic corn or give me death.  That’s how I feel right now about this.  It shouldn’t be that difficult.  It’s corn not freaking oil.  But I guess they don’t care about little Corn Women now do they?  Well guess what?  I care and this ends now.

Es realmente triste la condición de los alimentos disponibles en la nación más rica del mundo. Supongo que así es como se enriquecieron al alimentar la comida más básica y convertirla en comida franken. Así que ahora no tenía cáscaras de maíz orgánicas, ni pimientos orgánicos, por lo tanto, no tamales orgánicos. Y para colmo, después de repasar toda esta situación, me di cuenta de que tengo que hacer los tamales del maíz real. No es harina de maíz, está molida de maíz desde el interior de los granos. Así que estoy tan alejado del proceso que no tengo idea de dónde proviene realmente la masa real. Soy completamente ignorante en la fabricación de tamales y aunque estoy un poco avergonzado, es lo que es. Eso significa que debo aprender de un maestro y dejar de intentar hacerlo yo mismo. Pero quiero maíz orgánico y sé de un lugar en Los Ángeles que tiene masa orgánica. ¡Es hora de plantar un poco de maíz con la rapidez!

¿Pero adivina que? Ahora estoy en una misión para hacer tamales veganos orgánicos. Esto es para Mis Abuelitas. Esto ya no es una broma y déjame decirte algo. Dame maíz orgánico o dame muerte. Así es como me siento ahora con respecto a esto. No debería ser tan difícil. Es el maíz no el aceite maldito. Pero supongo que no les importan las pequeñas mujeres de maíz, ¿verdad? ¿Bien adivina que? Me importa y esto termina ahora.

tee pee

 

Valerie is a Health and Wellness Coach trying to make organic Vegan Tamales.  It’s not as easy as she thought but she will keep researching to find some organic corn.  She lives in Northern California with her daughter and puppy.

Valerie es una entrenadora de salud y bienestar que intenta hacer tamales veganos orgánicos. No es tan fácil como pensó, pero seguirá investigando para encontrar algo de maíz orgánico. Ella vive en el norte de California con su hija y su cachorro.

 

How to Make Soy Milk/Cómo hacer leche de soja

shallow focus photography of cafe late

Photo by Kevin Menajang on Pexels.com

Soy milk has a lot of information in the news regarding whether or not soy milk is healthy for you.  There’s research that says it’s good and bad.  However the bottom line is that you want to ensure that you are eating organic non Genetically Modified Organism (GMO) Soy Beans and then don’t eat it 3 times per day.  Only 1 serving per day is fine.  So maybe just a glass of soy milk or in your cereal is perfect.

3 cups of Soy Beans makes 1 gallon of soy milk.

  1. Soak 3 cups of dried organic soybeans in water overnight or for at least 8 hours
  2. Drain and carefully rinse the soybeans then add them to a grinder or blender and blend until smooth.  If using a blender add some water to aid blending
  3. Pour 1 gallon of drinking water into a large pot and add the blended liquid into it and stir for a few minutes.
  4. Strain the liquid through a muslin cloth and squeeze out the soya milk.  The pulp remaining in the cheesecloth is very nutritious also and can be used in bread making or soups.
  5. Bring the liquid to a boil, then lower the heat and simmer for at least 25 minutes.  Stir it with a wooden spoon to prevent burning.
  6. The soy milk can be enjoyed on its own, or with agave syrup, sugar or vanilla which can be added at this stage to flavor it.
  7. Serve warm or chill and enjoy.

NOTE: SOY milk may foam up quickly to the top of the pot.  If this happens, remove the pot from the heat or turn off the heat for a few moments until it cools a little and the foaming stops.

pexels-photo-133553

Photo by tyler hendy on Pexels.com

La leche de soya tiene mucha información en las noticias sobre si la leche de soya es saludable para usted o no. Hay investigaciones que dicen que es bueno y malo. Sin embargo, la conclusión es que usted quiere asegurarse de que está comiendo frijoles de soya orgánicos no modificados genéticamente (OMG) y luego no los coma 3 veces al día. Sólo 1 porción por día está bien. Así que tal vez solo un vaso de leche de soja o en tu cereal es perfecto.

3 tazas de frijoles de soya hacen 1 galón de leche de soya.

Remoje 3 tazas de soja orgánica seca en agua durante la noche o durante al menos 8 horas
Escurra y enjuague con cuidado las semillas de soja, luego agréguelas a un molinillo o licuadora y mezcle hasta que quede suave. Si usa una licuadora, agregue un poco de agua para ayudar a la mezcla
Vierta 1 galón de agua potable en una olla grande, agregue el líquido mezclado en ella y revuelva por unos minutos.
Colar el líquido a través de un paño de muselina y exprimir la leche de soja. La pulpa que queda en la estopilla también es muy nutritiva y se puede usar en la fabricación de pan o en sopas.
Hierva el líquido, luego baje el fuego y cocine a fuego lento durante al menos 25 minutos. Revuélvelo con una cuchara de madera para evitar que se queme.
La leche de soja se puede disfrutar sola o con jarabe de agave, azúcar o vainilla, que se pueden agregar en esta etapa para darle sabor.
Servir caliente o frío y disfrutar.
NOTA: la leche de SOJA puede formar espuma rápidamente en la parte superior de la olla. Si esto sucede, retire la olla del fuego o apáguelo por unos momentos hasta que se enfríe un poco y la espuma se detenga.

Making your own soy milk can be a great way to save $$, be Zero Waste and also ensure you aren't getting many of the preservatives that is put in commercial soy milk.  Good job if you do it!! But if you do 
not have time it's OK.  Just relax and eat something healthy.

tee peeValerie is a Health and wellness Coach. She is passionate about the planet and wants everyone to know that by making their own food, they can not only heal themselves but the whole planet. One person at a time that is. Share this Blog Post with your friends. Making your 
own food turns you into an Earth Angel so just know you're awesome no
matter what!!

16 Impressive Benefits of Drinking Kombucha Tea

Originally Published on OrganicFacts.net  By May 31, 2018

16 Impressive Benefits of Drinking Kombucha Tea

Kombucha is a fermented, lightly fizzy sweetened tea with health benefits like aiding in digestion, promoting weight loss, facilitating detoxification, lowering cholesterol levels, boosting heart health, controlling diabetes, and protecting the liver. It also aids in reducing arthritis pain and providing relief from gastric ulcers.
What is Kombucha Tea?

Kombucha tea is a refreshing beverage obtained by the fermentation of sweetened tea with a symbiotic association of acetic acid, bacteria, and specific yeast cultures. Believed to have originated in northeast China during the third century BCE, this miraculous tea has been valued for its unique, refreshing taste and impressive range of medicinal benefits. It is famously known as the ‘Immortal Health Elixir’ in ancient Chinese literature. Other names for kombucha include Manchurian mushroom tea, Russian tea, Kargasok tea, spumonto, tea beer, tea cider, and tea kvass.

It has various flavors depending on whether it’s made from black or green tea and tastes somewhere in the middle of apple cider and champagne.

Kombucha Nutrition Facts

Kombucha contains a range of yeast and bacterial species with polyphenols, amino acids, and organic acids. Post the completion of the fermentation process, the tea develops into a nutritional powerhouse with the richness of minerals like sodium, numerous beneficial enzymes, a range of vitamins such as vitamins B1 (thiamin), B2 (riboflavin), B3 (niacin), B6 (pyridoxin), B9 (folic acid), B12 (cobalamin), vitamin C (ascorbic acid), and many healthful chemical constituents such as gluconic acid, oxalic acid, acetic acid, glucuronic acid, usnic acid, fructose, and lactic acid.
Health Benefits of Kombucha Tea

Let’s take a closer look at the many health benefits of kombucha.

Detoxifies the Body

Kombucha contains large amounts of organic acids like glucuronic acid and powerful antioxidants which help in shielding the body from oxidative damage. The antioxidants present in it look out for free radicals and neutralize their effects, thereby repairing and protecting the body from chronic diseases and inflammation. [1] Furthermore, it prevents the harmful effects of pollution caused by the petroleum products along with plastics, pesticides, resins, and heavy metals.

Improves Digestion

Kombucha is fermented with a live colony of bacteria and yeast, so it works as a probiotic by sustaining gut health and provides relief from various abdominal disorders including chronic constipation and diarrhea. The digestive enzymes present in it enhance the effects of glucuronic acid and aid in the breakdown of proteins and saccharides, making the digestive system more efficient.

Promotes Weight Loss

Kombucha tea boosts metabolism. A high metabolic rate helps in weight loss as it makes you feel more energized, and more likely to engage in regular physical exercise. Also, the sugar and calorie content in this fermented tea is very little, five times lesser than a fizzy drink.

Protects Liver

Kombucha possesses the remarkable ability to detoxify the body. It contains a powerful detoxifier glucuronic acid which binds the toxins by entering the liver and eliminates them via kidneys. This helps in reducing the burden on the pancreas and keeps the liver healthy. A research study has shown that this tea helps in restoring the levels of glutathione and is remarkably effective in reducing hepatotoxicity. [2] A comparative study conducted on black tea, kombucha tea, and enzyme-processed black tea has proven the superiority of kombucha tea in providing hepatic protection against toxicity due to the antioxidants in it. [3]

Maintains Cholesterol Levels

Another superb benefit offered by kombucha tea is the maintenance of healthy levels of cholesterol. [4] Research studies have provided qualitative evidence regarding the anti-lipidemic properties of this tea which help in reducing the absorption of LDL cholesterol (bad cholesterol) and triglycerides, and elevating the levels of HDL (good cholesterol) in the body. [5] [6]

Prevents Heart Diseases

Studies show that drinking kombucha can be beneficial for the heart as it regulates cholesterol as well as lowers triglyceride levels in the blood. [7]

Controls Diabetes

Kombucha is a natural therapeutic agent which helps in suppressing the factors that cause diabetic conditions. A comparative study involving black tea and kombucha has revealed that kombucha has better inhibiting properties as compared to black tea and aids in a superior deterrence of the elevated blood glucose levels. [5] The study has also suggested that the tea exerts healing action on the pancreas of diabetic individuals and helps in guarding their liver and kidney functions by reducing the concentration of urea and other unfavorable activities occurring in the plasma membrane.

16 Impressive Benefits of Drinking Kombucha Tea_2

Prevents Cancer

The antioxidant-rich tea possesses anti-microbial properties and prevents conditions such as cancer as it contributes productively to maintaining cellular health and strong immune defense. Studies have shown that glucaric acid present in it is quite effective in the prevention of various types of cancer including pancreatic, colon, and breast cancer. [8] As stated earlier, the detoxification qualities of the drink also contribute to the prevention of different cancers.

Relieves Arthritis Pain

Kombucha contains glucosamines which are beneficial in the prevention and treatment of all types of arthritis. Glucosamine present in it stimulates the production of hyaluronic acid, which helps in the maintenance of cartilage structure and provides relief from the pain associated with arthritis. [9] Hyaluronic acid aids in reducing the free radical damage, lubrication, and elasticity of the joints by empowering the connective tissue to bind the moisture.

Enhances Mood

Kombucha has a variety of amino acids, methylxanthine alkaloids (caffeine, theophylline, and theobromine), ascorbic acid (vitamin C), and B vitamins (including B1, B6, B9, and B12), which are needed for a healthy nervous system. This helps in inhibiting the release of stress hormone cortisol, battling depression, balancing mood, and enhancing concentration. Regular consumption of this tea can also help you overcome sleep disorders. Depression is one of the symptoms of a leaky gut. Drinking the tea can rewire the gut-brain axis and heal gut inflammation to promote mental health.

Boosts Immunity

Kombucha is rich in numerous antioxidants that strengthen the immune defense and boost the energy levels of the body. The anti-inflammatory and anti-microbial properties of this tea help in fighting various bacterial and viral infections. A study conducted on this tea has validated the fact that intake of this drink may help in boosting the immune system. [10]

Anti-microbial Effects

Kombucha tea has anti-microbial properties which may prove effective against a variety of pathogens. An investigative research has revealed that apart from acetic acid, it contains other anti-microbial components, which even at neutral values of pH, provide protection against a range of microorganisms including Staphylococcus aureus, Staphylococcus epidermis, Escherichia Coli, Salmonella enteriditis, Pseudomonas aeruginosa, Listeria monocytogens, and Helicobacter pylori. [11]

Treats Asthma

The theophylline in kombucha is well known as a bronchodilator, which helps control chronic asthma due to its anti-inflammatory, immunomodulatory, and bronchoprotective effects.

Heals Gastric Ulcers

Kombucha provides relief from discomfort caused by gastric ulcerations. Studies conducted have revealed that antioxidants and phenols present in this tea help in protecting the mucin content in the gastric tissues and decrease the secretion of excess gastric acids. [12] The same study also suggested that the efficacy of the tea in healing gastric ulcers is at par with the commercially available drug, omeprazole.

Improves Cellular Health

Kombucha helps in maintaining cellular health which is vital for the healthy functioning of the body. A study performed on its tea has shown the protective effects against induced cytotoxicity and demonstrated positive results with respect to the factors implicated in the reduction of cellular toxins. [13]

Other Uses

Finally, kombucha drink has a revitalizing effect which helps retain the natural color of the hair, keeps the skin firm and improves the feeling of overall health and vigor. [14] It is an effective wound healer, which is also known to improve eyesight. [15] Apart from a plethora of health benefits mentioned above, kombucha culture can also be utilized to manufacture artificial leather. [16]

How to Prepare Kombucha Tea?

Kombucha tea is prepared by mixing the colony of bacteria and yeast (called SCOBY, which is an acronym for “symbiotic colony of bacteria and yeast”) into sugar and tea, which is followed by fermentation in suitable and sterile conditions.
While sometimes referred as kombucha mushroom, there is no mushroom associated with kombucha. The SCOBY is also called the kombucha mushroom or Mother. This live yeast present in the beverage provides it an active life which carries on even after transferring it into the storage containers. [17] The culture includes Candida stellata, Zygosaccharomyces baili, Brettanomyces bruxellensis, Saccharomyces cerevisiae, Torulaspora delbrueckii, and Schizosaccharomyces pombe yeasts.
After fermentation, the resultant fluid is a healthy beverage containing a wealth of vitamins, vinegar, and many powerful components.

Side Effects of Kombucha Tea

Although kombucha has been valued as a phenomenal healer, brewing the tea under non-sterile conditions can cause contamination and spoilage which can be extremely harmful. [18]

  • Ceramic pots for brewing: Usage of ceramic pots during the brewing process of the kombucha tea can raise the risk of lead poisoning. [18] The tea, while brewing, has the potential to elute lead from the glaze coating used in the ceramic pots making it unfit for consumption.
  • Gastrointestinal toxicity: Another side effect of kombucha tea is gastrointestinal discomfort, which can cause the onset of symptoms including nausea, vomiting, jaundice, and headaches. [19]
  • Lactic acidosis: Consumption of this tea can result in lactic acidosis in some individuals which can further lead to severe circumstances. [20]
  • Suppressed immune system: While kombucha can activate the immune system, it is not suitable for those on immunosuppressant medication.

Prior to considering kombucha for therapeutic usage, it is always advisable to consult a medical professional to better understand its effects.

The Heart Disease Rates of Meat-Eaters Versus Vegetarians & Vegans. The #1 Killer In The US

Originally Published on Collective-Evolution.com on June 23, 2017 By Arjun Walia

The Heart Disease Rates of Meat-Eaters Versus Vegetarians & Vegans. The #1 Killer In The US

Please be advised that there are multiple, heavily soured articles at the bottom of this one with a wealth of information about vegetarian/vegan diets. Please check them out if you’re interested and want to further your research.

Proper nutrition is essential for good health, and it’s disturbing how little doctors learn about it in medical school. As a result, they are unable to educate their patients on how to use nutrition to improve their health, or they offer advice based on science paid for by food corporations. The studies in this area are also not as strong as they could be, and that’s simply because they modern day medical industry is very invested in chemical medication.

The scientific literature these corporations use to indoctrinate us from an early age has been exposed as fraudulent, as countless studies have emerged showing the many problems with the modern day diet, which is the generally accepted diet. The problems with mass marketing and the manipulation of science require serious attention. After all, what exactly are we supposed to think when multiple editors-in-chief of peer-reviewed journals come out and blatantly say most of the research published these days is completely false? What are we supposed to think when new publications constantly offer a different narrative than the ones presented by major food corporations?

A recent FOIA investigation actually uncovered documents that show how the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) manipulates media and science press. This is hardly a surprise, as government agencies have long been involved with media manipulation, and several mainstream media journalists and news anchors have revealed this fact time and time again.

So, have we been completely misguided about nutrition and human nutritional requirements, which is why it’s so great to see more and more people becoming aware of this fact and taking their health into their own hands. It’s not a mystery why disease rates keep rising. While there are multiple factors at play here, the evidence points to mass meat consumption as a major one.

A Healthy Heart and How It Relates to Diet

“Studies are confirming the health benefits of meat-free eating. Nowadays, plant-based eating is recognized as not only nutritionally sufficient but also as a way to reduce the risk for many chronic illnesses.” (source)

From a scientific/biological perspective, the benefits of a meatless diet are inarguable. It makes one wonder why there is such a harsh resistance to this lifestyle. Skeptics will often point to the theory that we’ve been doing it this way for thousands of years, but that’s not true. Many experts in that field have repeatedly argued that our ancestral diets  were mostly plant-based, that meat was a ‘rare treat,’ and that our digestive systems aren’t really built for digesting meat on a daily basis.  Some of our ancestors had, as anthropologist Katherine Milton describes them, “different yet successful diets.” She says  some hunter-gatherer societies obtained almost all of their dietary energy from plants, and others obtained it from “wild animal fat and protein,” but that “does not imply that this is the ideal diet for modern humans, nor does it imply that modern humans have genetic adaptations to such diets.” (source)

Another heart surgeon who has done a lot for awareness, Dr. Ellsworth Wareham, explains:

The point is, it’s not all cut and dry like we’ve been made to believe.

There are many aspects to good health, and a vegan/vegetarian diet has proven to have benefits in several different areas. It’s particularly notable when we look at heart health. The number one cause for death in the United States, it is directly impacted by diet.

“Our standard American diet, also known as SAD, has put our country at the top of the list in the world for obesity, which increases the risk for serious health problems. Overwhelming scientific evidence links the consumption of meat and meat products to numerous diseases. . . . The World Health Organization (WHO) now places red and processed meat at the same danger level as cigarettes and asbestos. Meat is the new tobacco.”

– Dr. Joanne Kong (source)

Take a look at the graphic below regarding heart disease, the number one killer of Americans today. The risk of death from heart disease is significantly lower in vegetarians, and even lower in vegans.

Even the American Dietetic Association has weighed in with a position paper, concluding that “appropriately planned vegetarian diets, including total vegetarian or vegan diets, are healthful, nutritionally adequate, and may provide health benefits in the prevention and treatment of certain diseases.”

These diseases include heart disease, cancer, diabetes, and more.

There is a lot of science to back this up now, so much so that even the President of the American College of Cardiology, Dr. Kim A. Williams, has adopted a vegan diet. Talk about heart health…

He often sees patients who are overweight and struggling with hypertension, type 2 diabetes, and high cholesterol. One of the things he advises them to do specifically is to go vegan. He is also the Chairman of Cardiology at Rush University Medical Center in Chicago. His enthusiasm for a planet-based diet comes from his interpretation of medical literature, having cited several studies proving that people who pursue vegetarian diets live longer than meat eaters and have lower rates of death from heart disease, diabetes, and kidney problems. (source)

It’s great to see more and more professionals realize this, as the science shows that a vegan/vegetarian diet can halt and even reverse multiple diseases.

Research carried out by Dr. Dean Ornish, who found that patients who were put on a program that included a vegetarian diet had less coronary plaque and fewer cardiac events, is also commonly cited.

And there’s plenty more where that came from.

The Heart Disease Rates of Meat-Eaters Versus Vegetarians & Vegans. The #1 Killer In The US_2

“Veganism is a very fine form of nutrition. It’s a little extreme to tell a person who is using flesh foods that you’re going to take everything entirely away from them. When I was in practice in medicine, I would tell the patients that the vegetable-based diet was the healthy way to go, and to keep away from the animal products as much as possible. People are very sensitive about what they eat. You can talk to people about exercising relaxation, good mental attitude and they will accept that. But you talk to them about what they are eating and people are very sensitive about that. If an individual is willing to listen, I will try to explain to them on a scientific basis of how I think it’s better for them.” (source)

This trend is inciting further scientific inquiry as its popularity grows. At least 542,000 people in Britain now follow a vegan diet — up from 150,000 in 2006 — and another 521,000 vegetarians hope to reduce their consumption of animal products. It is evident that veganism has become one of the fastest growing lifestyle choices.

One of the most comprehensive studies ever performed on this subject is “The China Study,” conducted by Drs. T. Colin Campbell and Thomas Campbell. Their findings showed direct correlations between nutrition and heart-disease, diabetes, and cancer, proving that cultures that eat primarily plant-based diets have lower to no instances of these diseases and that switching to a plant-based diet can successfully reverse diseases already established in the body.

The Common Criticisms of This Type of Lifestyle Change

“One of the saddest lessons of history is this: If we’ve been bamboozled long enough, we tend to reject any evidence of the bamboozle. We’re no longer interested in finding out the truth. The bamboozle has captured us. It’s simply too painful to acknowledge, even to ourselves, that we’ve been taken. Once you give a charlatan power over you, you almost never get it back.”

– Carl Sagan

The problem with many of the truths we hold as universal, not just about nutrition, but all aspects of our world, is that we’ve been bombarded with beliefs from biased sources for years and then accepted those believes as truth. And when someone believes something for a long enough time, if they encounter information that conflicts with that belief system, they do everything in their power to defend it. It’s called cognitive dissonance, and it’s why it can be extremely difficult to talk to a meat-eater about the benefits of veganism/vegetarianism.

The bottom line is, humans do not require meat, and a vegan/vegetarian diet, or a diet severely restricted in meat consumption, is a far healthier option.

This growing awareness is part of a shift in human consciousness that’s taking place on several different levels. Transparency is emerging within not only the food industry, but our health industry, the financial industry, our political systems, and more. We are finally learning that the truth truth regarding so many different topics has been skewed.

 

Liberation From The Kitchen

How would you feel with some extra free time?  It’s easier than you think.

Let’s look at the current situation.  Many men and women work full time jobs.  After they get off work, they have to get home and figure out dinner for themselves and maybe their families.  Not sure about how many people feel about cooking dinner after working at least 8 hours, but it can be exhausting and that’s not exactly the first thing you feel like doing.

So how do you deal with this feeling of not wanting to cook?  Many people decide not to cook and instead go to their favorite take out or restaurant and buy dinner.  Not only is this pricey but most of the packaging comes in plastic.  Hopefully you grab something healthy for your body.  But if not then you bought something bad for one’s body and is bad for the planet as well.

How about thinking about a new solution?  I know this is not a new idea but actually a very old idea.  So maybe you have a good friend that is in the same situation as you.  So before you cook dinner you give them a quick call and say, “Hey friend, I’m making some mushroom soup and salad.  I cannot eat it all.  Would you like to stop by on your way home from work and pick some up on your way home?  Bring your own container and we’ll save the planet.”  Your friend is not only grateful but she replies, “Thanks so much!! I made some almond meal cookies and I’ll bring you some.”

The next night the cookie making friend calls her making friend and says, ” I made some quinoa with pesto sauce would you like me to bring some over?”  And they were both fed happy and they had the strength to carry on another day.

So if everyone started to do this, it would just create a world where people are sharing, caring and being fed.  It would be really great for the planet, families wallets and it would allow people to share some time together instead of being in the kitchen.

You can also try new and different food and if you like to cook, then someone to tell you how awesome your food is.  Also there’s nothing wrong with just giving food to someone with no expectation in return.  As you give, so shall you receive.  This is how we will transform our planet.  One small gesture of sharing at a time.  Let’s start the cycle of giving and receiving.

About the Author:  Valerie is a Health and Wellness Coach and Yoga Instructor.  Her dream is to see all people healthy and happy.  She shares with you healthy recipes, Anything good for Mother Earth as Mother Earth is in need of healing. As you Heal Yourself, You heal the planet.

THE ULTIMATE VEGETABLE LENTIL LOAF

Originally Published on Simple-Veganista.com THE ULTIMATE VEGETABLE LENTIL LOAF
After a few attempts (five to be exact) at making this lentil loaf, I have finally come up with a veggie version that tastes pretty darn good and is extremely filling. I wanted to keep this easy with ingredients you may already have in your pantry. After doing a little digging I was able to piece this together from a few resources like the one from Made to Create which is wonderfully simple and also had good reviews from when I shared it on my Facebook page! And also this one from Oh She Glows which is a walnut version using apples and raisins but I wanted one with all veggies (Hers looks delicious and I will be trying it too). Last but not least, I referenced this recipe at My Vegan Cookbook.

I especially love the glaze for the top of this loaf. You could serve some extra on the side, or double the amount if you like and put a little extra on. And if you like spicy, you’ll love the ground chipotle pepper in this recipe with the glaze, such a nice combo of sweet and spice! I found the higher amount of chipotle listed below to be just perfect for myself, adjust to your liking starting with the smaller amount if you’re not a fan of spice. Be prepared, one slice will most likely fill you up, it does for me! I’m not kidding when I tell you this is one hearty and filling lentil loaf. Leftovers make for great sandwiches. Store the loaf in the refrigerator for up to a 5 – 6 days. Sub in other veggies if you like. Some have left comments of adding in zucchini for the bell pepper. You get the idea, you can adjust to what you have on hand or prefer. Now on with the recipe…make a loaf and share the love!

THE ULTIMATE VEGETABLE LENTIL LOAF_2

THE ULTIMATE VEGETABLE LENTIL LOAF

A wonderfully flavored lentil loaf for the whole family to enjoy. The leftovers make for great sandwiches too!
Ingredients

Loaf

  • 1 cup dry lentils (use green/brown)
  • 2 1/2 cups water or vegetable broth
  • 3 tablespoons flaxseed meal (ground flaxseeds)
  • 1/3 cup water (6 tablespoons)
  • 2 tablespoons olive oil or steam saute using 1/4 cup water
  • 3 garlic cloves, minced
  • 1 small onion, finely diced
  • 1 small red bell pepper, finely diced
  • 1 carrot, finely diced or grated
  • 1 celery stalk, finely diced
  • 3/4 cup oats (I used GF oats)
  • 1/2 cup oat flour or finely ground oats (any flour of choice will work here too)
  • 1 heaping teaspoon dried thyme
  • 1/2 heaping teaspoon cumin
  • 1/2 teaspoon each garlic powder & onion powder…for good measure!
  • 1/4 – 1/2 teaspoon ground chipotle pepper, optional
  • cracked pepper & sea salt to taste

Glaze

  • 3 tablespoons organic ketchup
  • 1 tablespoon balsamic vinegar
  • 1 tablespoon pure maple syrup

THE ULTIMATE VEGETABLE LENTIL LOAF

Instructions

Rinse lentils. In large pot add 2 1/2 cups water/broth with lentils. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, cover and simmer for about 40 minutes, stirring occasionally. It’s ok if they get mushy, we are going to roughly puree 3/4 of the mixture when cooled. Once done, remove lid and set aside to cool (do not drain), they will thicken a bit upon standing, about 15 minutes is good.

Preheat oven to 350 degrees.

In small bowl combine flaxseed meal and 1/3 cup water, set aside for at least 10 minutes, preferably in the refrigerator. This will act as a binder and will thicken nicely upon sitting.

Prepare vegetables. In saute pan heat oil or water over medium heat. Saute garlic, onion, bell pepper, carrots and celery for about 5 minutes. Add spices mixing well to incorporate. Set aside to cool.

Using an immersion blender or food processor, blend 3/4 of the lentil mixture. For me this was an important part, I tried it other ways and this worked to help as a binder. If using an immersion blender, tilt your pot slightly to the side for easier blending. Alternately, you can mash the lentils with a potato masher or fork.

Combine sauteed vegetables with the lentils, oats, oat flour and flax egg, mix well. Taste, adding salt and pepper as needed, or any other herb or spice you might like. Place mixture into a loaf pan lined with parchment paper, leaving it overlapping for easy removal later. Press down firmly filling in along the edges too.

Prepare your glaze by combining all ingredients in a small bowl, mix until incorporated. I recommend making each tablespoon heaping so you have plenty of this great sauce on top. Spread over top of loaf and bake in oven for about 45 – 50 minutes. Let cool a bit before slicing.

Serves 8.

NOTES:

You may like to double up on the glaze, having some to put on the loaf after it’s removed from the oven.

If you don’t care for a little spicy heat, omit the chipotle powder.

I do not recommend reheating the entire loaf at once. It will most likely become too dry, as the heat will take to long to reach the center. I recommend cutting slices and reheating. If you need, you can make your lentil loaf the day before and store uncooked until ready to heat, bring to room temperature and heat according to instructions above.

Your work is done…except for the dishes…maybe you can delegate that to someone else. 🙂

 Did you make this recipe?

Tag @thesimpleveganista on Instagram and hashtag it #thesimpleveganista

Mama eats plants

Originally Published on MamaEatsPlants.com  on April 5, 2018 By A.

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trash free, plant based lifestyle

manicotti + simple marinara

When I saw gluten free manicotti shells at my co-op, I knew I had to take them home with me! The ones I used are these ones by Jovial Foods. The box is recyclable and the plastic looking window is certified home compostable wood pulp! Plus, they taste amazing- they’re my hands down favorite brand of gluten free pasta- they cook al dente without gummy texture or off flavors.

To fill them, I knew I wanted something creamy (which is where I usually turn to cashews) but I needed to cut it with something to make it less heavy and more nutritionally dense. I remembered a lasagna recipe in one of my favorite cookbooks, Vegan For Everybody, which uses cooked cauliflower blended with the cashews to add bulk and creaminess without getting too heavy. I wasn’t sure if it would taste just right stuffed in the manicotti- I haven’t had these since going vegan- and sometimes Italian recipes which rely heavily on gluten and animal products can be hard to replicate well. To my delight, the texture and taste was perfect, gluten free, vegan and all.

Mama eats plants_3
So many of you asked for an exact recipe after I showed them in my Instagram story (I saved it to my highlights so you can still watch it!) that I thought I’d write it up here for you to reference back to if desired. My marinara is super basic and relies heavily on good ingredients, so search out good canned tomatoes and good olive oil. I can my own tomatoes every summer with my mom (ever since I can remember) and it’s so worth it for the rich flavor all winter long- it’s not hard but does take a full day of work. We use a pressure canner and go off the instructions in the booklet it comes with- it’s not scary or complicated at all. Often farmers will sell their “seconds”- bruised or oddly shaped tomatoes- but the case at the market to you. San Marzano store bought canned Italian tomatoes are the closest thing to the flavor of home canned.

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plant based manicotti

for the marinara:

2 x 28 oz cans whole tomatoes

3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

4-6 cloves garlic, chopped

a palm of fresh oregano (about 2 tsp chopped)

chile flakes (optional)

salt to taste

whiz the tomatoes and their juice for a few seconds in a blender or crush with your hands well to break them down into small pieces.

Add the olive oil and garlic to a pan and start the heat on medium high. When the garlic starts to sizzle and become fragrant- about 30 seconds, pour in the tomatoes (don’t let the garlic burn or color, stir around if necessary) and the oregano and chile if using. Reduce to medium low and let simmer, stirring occasionally, while you make the filling.

for the ricotta filling:

8 ounces (approx 2.5 cups) cauliflower, cut into 1/2 inch pieces

1.5 cups raw cashews, chopped if whole

3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil

s+p

1/4 cup fresh chopped parsley or basil

Boil cauliflower and cashews in a large pot with 3 quarts of water and 2 teaspoons kosher salt until cauliflower is very soft and falls apart easily when poked with a fork, about 20 minutes. Drain mixture in colander and let cool slightly, about 5 minutes.

Process cauliflower mixture, 3 tablespoons oil, and 1/4 cup water in processor until smooth, scraping down sides of bowl as needed, about 2 minutes. Season with plenty of salt and pepper to taste. Pulse in basil or parsley for just a few seconds to combine. Mixture can be made up to 3 days ahead.

assembling:

1 box manicotti noodles or other stuffable pasta (12-15 pieces), cooked according to package directions

Preheat oven to 375 Fahrenheit.

In a baking dish, spoon some sauce to cover the bottom of the dish. Working with one manicotti at a time, use a butter knife or a pastry bag to fill each shell. I used a butter knife and packed it in half from each end. Don’t worry if theres a few blank spots. I wasn’t perfect about it but they all turned out fine after cooking. Layer the filled ones in the dish. Spread the remaining sauce over the top.

Cover dish with a lid or aluminum foil. Bake for 40 minutes. Remove from oven and plate. I sprinkled extra chopped parsley and spooned leftover cashew ricotta that I had in the fridge over the top in little dollops (this recipe) but it would be delicious on its own too; or hold back some of the filling and dollop on top.

We served it with a simple fennel citrus salad- just toss together:

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1 large fennel bulb, thinly sliced

1/2 a small red onion or fresh spring onion, thinly sliced

1 orange, cara cara, or grapefruit, pith removed and fruit sliced

1/2 cup fresh whole parsley leaves

a few handfuls mixed lettuces

juice of 1/2 a lemon

generous drizzle good extra virgin olive oil

salt and fresh cracked pepper to taste

chili flakes to taste