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Is Veganism Safe For Babies?

9 Jul

HuffPost Live

First of all, thank you Nancy Redd and HuffPost Live for having me for a much needed discussion. Watch the video here!

My thoughts to:

  • @chubbyveganmom – wish we were closer! I totally see our kids having fun in the kitchen together!
  • @FatGirlPosing – enjoy looking at your photos!  I thought you’d be interested in the new study out by National Health and Nutrition Examination
    Survey (NHANES) that states it is the lack of exercise, not food intake, that causes obesity.

Vegan Mamas out there: Are your Vegan Babies Healthy? Would love to hear from you!!!

NOTE: My Twitter is @MamaInDKtchn! Also, our family members are ranked rowers (NOT national rowers… wish we were though)! 🙂


Raw Vegan? Me? How Can This Be?

29 May

You are a raw vegan. NO I AM NOT! You are! OH DEAR, it is true. For the past 3 weeks anyway.

I have been totally raw and totally vegan for the past 3 weeks and I haven’t craved anything else. The food is so surprisingly delicious! I thought raw and living foods meant eating carrots and celery… but today I had Sweet Potato Pie with Frosting (!) and Pad Thai. And I can’t believe how well I feel: physically, mentally and dare I say, spiritually. I’m in very good humor, never hungry, totally at peace and have so much energy. I’m still losing excess weight, my white heads and black heads are disappearing, my grumpiness has diminished, I’m up at night passionately reading and blogging about raw and living foods and awake during the day enjoying my family (even if our son wakes me up sometimes at night). 

But do I really want to give up meat, dairy and eggs and cooked foods? Yes I actually do. I don’t crave meats, dairy or eggs – even as I prepare them for my family. I haven’t craved for my usual ‘junk’ either. (I was a lacto-ovo vegetarian for 5 years and was always lethargic, gained 20 pounds and unhappy. This time, things are different – I feel great on raw!) And yes, I do look with a little sadness at the copper pots, the double ovens and the outdoor grill my family has presented me through the years… and I think of memories of family traditions and holiday meals, but the passion of introducing my family and friends to the wonders of raw outweighs all that. We are indeed blessed with open-minded families: my mother saw a NAET practitioner and has been reading avidly on raw foods and my mother-in-law has taken the 30 day raw and living foods challenge.

Morimono Activity:
Creating Edible Raw Food Art with Kids
My son ate up his food before he could begin his art
Another child ate hers all up afterwards

Diet For A New America: How Your Food Choices Affect Your Health, Happiness, and the Future of Life on Earth by John Robbins is eye-opening. He turned down the family business of Baskin-Robbins for his dream: “A dream of a society that is truly healthy, practicing a wise and compassionate stewardship of a balanced ecosystem… It is really the dream of all human beings who feel the plight of the earth as their own, and sense our obligation to respect and protect the world in which we live.” In this book, he explains “how powerfully our eating habits affect the possibility of this dream becoming a reality” and how “the traditional assumptions regarding our need for meats, dairy products and eggs have been in error… You’ll see that the very eating habits that can do so much to give you strength and health are exactly the same ones that can significantly reduce the needless suffering in the world, and do much to preserve our ecosystem.”

Some excerpts:

Nothing is more powerful than an individual acting out of his conscience,
thus helping to bring the collective consience to life.
– Norman Cousins –

The cultures with the very longest life spans in the world are the Vilcambas, who reside in the Andes of Ecuador, the Abkhasians, who live on the Black Sea…, and the Hunzas, who live in the Himalayas of Northern Pakistan… All three are either totally vegetarian or close to it. The Hunzas, who are the largest of the three groups, eat almost no animal products. Meat and dairy products combined account for only 1 1/2% of their total calories… Particularly striking to researchers who have visited these cultures is that the people not only live so long, but that they enjoy full, active lives throughout their many years, and show no signs of the many degenerative diseases that afflict the elderly in our culture.

They work and play at 80 and beyond; most of those who reach their 100th birthday continue to be active, and retirement is unheard of… With age, wisdom accumulates, but physical degeneration is limited so the senior citizens of these remote societies have something unique to contribute to the lives of others. They are revered.

At Yale, Professor Irving Fisher designed a series of tests to compare the stamina and strength of meat-eaters against that of vegetarians… His findings do not seem to lend a great deal of credibility to the popular prejudices that hold meat to be a builder of strength… flesh-eaters showed far less endurance than the abstainers (vegetarians), even when the latter were leading a sedentary life.

Myron Winich, director of Columbia University’s Institute of Human Nutrition, says the data indicates: a relationship between high-protein diets and cancer of the colon…

People often say that humans have always eaten animals, as if this is a justification for continuing the practice. According to this logic, we should not try to prevent people from murdering other people, since this has also been done since the earliest of times.
– Isaac Singer – 

When Health is absent
Wisdom cannot reveal itself,
Art cannot become manifest,
Strength cannot be exerted,
Wealth is useless and
Reason is powerless.
– Herophilies, 300 B.C. –


In the prestigious Advances in Cancer Research, they conclude: At present, we have overwhelming evidence… (that) none of the rish factors for cancer is… more significant than diet and nutrition. 

Dr. Gio B. Gori, the Deputy Director of the National Cancer Institute’s Division of Cancer Cause and Prevention… also director of the National Cancer Institute’s Diet, Nutrition and Cancer Program… told Congress: Until recently, many eyebrows would have been raised by suggesting that an imbalance of normal dietary components could lead to cancer and cardiovascular disease… Today, the accumulation of… evidence… makes this notion not only possible but certain… (The) dietary factors responsibile (are) principally meat and fat intake.

We aren’t what we eat. We are what we don’t sh*t.
– Hugh Romney –

The renowned Harvard nutritionist, Dr. Jean Mayer, explained the matter this way: In becoming vegetarian, you will eat a greater percentage of your calories from cereal grains, dried beans and peas, potatoes and pasta – the very foods most dieters avoid with zeal. And you will lose weight.

A teenager who remains 20% under the normal weight enjoys a 15 year increase over and above normal life expectancy. Lower than normal weight is also associated with marked reductions in the incidence of cancer, cardiovascular diseases, diabetes, and other degenerative diseases. In a very real sense, then, US and European weight standards are excessive, and the overwhelming majority of Americans and Europeans are detrimentally overweight.

Researchers at the University Hospital in Linkoping, Sweden, put bronchial asthma patients, whose condition was so severe that they required cortisone or other medication, onto a pure vegetarian diet, without any eggs or dairy products… After one year… more than 90% of the patients who completed the project reported a major i
mprovement in the severity and frequency of asthma attacks. Also, levels of medication dosages dropped an average of 50 to 90%. A number of the patients were so improved that they were able to discontinue medication altogether with the pure vegetarian diet.

We live in a crazy time, when people who make food choices that are healthy and compassionate are often considered weird, while people are considered normal whose eating habits promot disease and are dependent on enormouse suffering.

I believe that each of us, at heart, wants to use our brief time in these bodies and on this planet to contribute something of value. I believe that each of us, at heart, wants to help make the world a better, safer place, a more loving and beautiful place. The healthier we are, the more able we will be to make whatever contribution we can.

… how our food choices affect, not only our health, but our children, the gene pool…

… important to realise that the vast majority of American agriculture does not grow food for people. It grows food for animals, whose flesh, milk and eggs we then consume. Most of it, actually, gets turned into manure, which cannot be recycled because it does not fall onto the land itself, but instead is concentrated in unbelievable quantities at feedlots and confinement sheds, and ends up in our alreadly amply-polluted water.

If we were simply to grow food for people, we would need less than 30% of the yield we now require from our agricultural acreage. We could cut our yield in half, and still have far more than enough food to feed ourselves… we could in fact feed the entire world if we grew food directly for people, instead of supplying what are really manure and saturated fat factories.

In doing so, we would also stop flooding the environment with lethal poisons. Our children might yet live in an increasingly safe and clean world.

Pesticide authority Lewis Regenstein writes: Meat contains approximately 14 times more pesticides than do plant foods; dairy products 5 1/2 times. Thus, by eating foods of animal origin, one ingests greatly concentrated amounts of hazardous chemicals.

You might think that any way toxic chemicals could possibly be eliminated from the human body would be a good thing. But, disturbingly, the most common way these stored-up poisons are released is in the breast milk of nursing mothers… A nursing woman’s body draws on its body fat reservoirs to make milk. Stored in her body fat reservoirs are virtually all the toxic chemicals she has ever ingested, inhaled or absorbed through her skin. These poisons are thus incorporated into her milk. Breast-fed babies thereby may consume extraordinary large amounts of the most toxic substances ever known to man… Some women are so alarmed by these terrifying facts that they decide not to breast feed their young. But this is not usually the best decisions for a number of important reasons: 1) Human breast milk… superior… to any cow’s milk… 2) … formulas… contaminated with toxic chemicals 3) Human breast milk contains antibodies… 4) Breast-feeding procides bonding and emotional nurturance…

The livestock population of the United States today consumes enough grain and soybean to feed over five times the entire human population of the country. We feed these animals over 80% of the corn we grow, and over 95% of the oats… how immensely wasteful…

The livestock of the United States produce twenty times as much excrement as the entire human population of the country!

… the production of meats, dairy products and eggs account for one-third of the total amount of all raw materials used for all purposes in the United States.