Year 2013, Year of CHANGE

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vegetarian happy new yearSo we will soon leave year 2012. Year 2012 has been the year that change the world, so many things happens to us in this life. I don’t know how many people turn to be vegetarian during year 2012. I, myself, keep doing my best to bring the information about vegetarianism/veganism to everyone everyday with the hope more people turn to be vegetarian/vegan.

Nobody is perfect, as I believe. Sometimes, when I try to bring some information about veganism, I know that it may be a rather rude for some vegetarians. I don’t mean to say that vegans are any better than vegetarian. I am very sorry about this. I have been a vegan since year 2012, and naturally I post more about veganism on my simple blog, though the blog is about vegetarianism. I believe vegans are vegetarian too. We are all one family. I love you all my readers.

Year 2013 is coming now. Let’s hope year 2013 will be the year of CHANGE. I believe more people will decide to be vegetarian on year 2013. People will have to think about their HEALTH, about their LIFE, and about the Planet. Let’s start eating healthy, start living healthy. By becoming a vegetarian will change the world to be better.

Life is about doing more, not about having more. Let’s do more and hope more people will turn to become a vegetarian on year 2013. And let’s hope a better tomorrow for our planet, for our life.

Finally, I wish you the happiest New Year you ever had. May all the best come to your life, and may all dreams come true! Wish you success in life. May happiness come to all!

Regards,
Xiao Kang.

Vegetarian? Vegan? Raw Diet! What’s the difference?

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By Julia Driggers RD LDN

Plant-based diets are gaining momentum and becoming more mainstream. Pop your head into any grocery store and you’ll be able to find numerous products marked “Vegetarian” or “Certified Vegan.” It can be difficult to know what’s what! Below are brief definitions to help guide you.

Vegetarians do not consume any fish, meat, or poultry. A lacto-vegetarian consumes dairy products and an ovo-vegetarian consumes eggs. A lacto-ovo vegetarian consumes both dairy products and eggs, but no meat. Products labeled “vegetarian” typically do not contain any meat or meat-derived products; however, there are no regulations in the U.S. governing the use of “vegetarian” on a label.  To be certain that a product is vegetarian, contact the manufacturer. An example of a meat-derived product is gelatin, which is prepared from animal bones.

Vegans are vegetarians who do not consume any animal/insect=derived products including dairy products, eggs, and honey. This group avoids animal/insect-based food dyes, binders, and additives. 

Individuals following a Raw Diet consume products that are uncooked and unprocessed.   The percentage of raw foods can vary from 50-100% raw.  Their diet may or may not be vegan.  Consumers of the raw diet do not cook foods at temperatures greater than 116 degrees Fahrenheit. Examples of raw foods are typically vegan include fresh fruit and vegetables, nuts, seeds, sprouted grains, beans, and dried fruit. Depending on the individual’s preference raw meat like Carpaccio or raw fish like sushi may be eaten as well as raw milk products.

The American Dietetic Association recognizes that appropriately planned vegetarian and vegan diets are healthful for all age groups.   Completely raw diets are not recommended for infants and children due to concerns with nutrient adequacy.

Julia Driggers RD, LDN is a Pediatric Dietitian at The Childrens Hospital of Philadelphia. She is very interested in Vegetarian and Vegan nutrition and regularly contributes to the Vegetarian Resource Group (VRG) Magazine/Website.

Breaking the Fast

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cereal with fruitBy Debbie King MS RD LD

The word breakfast literally comes from the Breaking of the Fast. Before we had electric lights everywhere, when the sun went to bed, so did we. There was no midnight snack because we were up before the dawn and sacked out through the night after a hard day in our agrarian lifestyle. The biggest meal was at lunch when we had the most light with which to cook it. The evening supper consisted of a simpler fare and was the last food eaten before a long slumber.  Generally, there was about 10 to 12 hours between the last meal and breakfast. However, in the 24-7 fast paced 2009, it is a different story.

Many people I counsel eat later and later. They eat dessert while watching TV after work. Many tell me they just aren’t hungry in the morning. Here are some interesting facts I read from Dr. Caroline J. Cederquist.

The time cruising between meals tends to shorten as the day continues. So, breakfast at 7:30 or 8am is followed by a 5 hour break until 12pm. Perhaps we drink some liquids during the morning hours. Then, we tend to want a snack in the afternoon, usually 3-4 hours later. Next, comes dinner at 2-3 hours after that. The day rounds out with a late night snack 1-2 hours after dinner. Do you get the idea of where extra calories can pack in and hunger may not be so prevalent?

Why is breakfast important? Well, a number of reasons. Let’s start with weight management. Shifting calories to the beginning and middle of your day and lightening up on the end of the day uses the most amount of calories during your busiest time. Unless you go for an evening constitutional stroll, most people are fairly sedentary with some electronic device in the twilight hours.

Also, many studies show that people who eat breakfast tend to eat less throughout the day. This is reiterated in the National Weight Control Registry. In this group, subjects lost at least 30 pounds and kept off the weight for at least 1 year. One of the most common factors of these successful folks was that they ate breakfast.[ii]

If you think about it, going without breakfast just doesn’t make sense, especially if you exercise in the morning. You have very little fuel in your body, you have your whole day ahead of you, and you are facing all the day’s challenges with nothing to keep you going. If you tax your body with a run or an hour of strength training, you are really depleting your energy stores. What does your body do when it has to work hard with no assurance of steady fuel? It goes into reserve mode. Your body feels it has to hang on to every calorie that comes in. Your metabolism slows down to cling to those calories you do eat. A increased weight disaster in the making.

Other facts about breakfast eaters is that they have better concentration, improved brain function for morning tasks and better hand-eye coordination. It also keeps you from being grumpy or irritable. My first job was a deli-bakery counter next to a metropolitan train station. People got their first coffee and donut from me. There were a lot of nasty folks grabbing coffee that were as nice as you please when they came for lunch.

I know there are those of you, who are like me and not hungry first thing in the morning. Not a problem. I have water before my run and I eat right afterward. My body is used to this routine. If I am going to do a long workout- more than 60 minutes- I have something very small, such as a dab of nut butter on a cracker or apple slice before the workout or have it ready during the workout.

Okay, so now you will think about breakfast. But, what is the best breakfast? Purdue University researcher Wayne Campbell, PhD, was quoted on WebMD, as saying that protein blunts your hunger the most and is the most satisfying. Also, fiber has been shown to extend satiety. Satiety means feeling satiated or not hungry. Unfortunately, lean protein at breakfast isn’t a part of trendy marketing.

According to Nutrition Health Letter – Dessert for breakfast is the new trend, and it hasn’t left out any of the population, even vegans. We may think we are eating healthier, but we are still subject to the issues of folks on the go. Cereal and cereal bars can be nutritionally as different as a fruit bar and a martini bar. Cereals such as shredded wheat, rye flakes, quinoa or other low sugar, high fiber products are great for breakfast. Add a couple of ounces of soy milk and you have a low calorie, high protein breakfast that is satisfying for the whole morning.

On the other hand, toaster pastries and breakfast bars can have a protein content that is lean to almost none. The fiber content is also may not be substantial. The sugars in many of them rival their more conventional and mass marketed counterparts. Whereas, vegan breakfast foods such as pancakes and waffles tend to have less fat due to the shunning of eggs and butter, a plate full of tofu scramble can have a high fat and calorie content especially when you throw the soy cheese on top.

We all love to have a bagel every once in a while. For those of you who looked at that last sentence and were aghast at the words “once in a while”, realize that bagels are 4-5 servings of bread. So eating even half of one packs some calories. If you decide to put anything on top, you could move right into calorie overload. Also, most people add nut butters, vegan cream cheese, and some jam. Not bad for a weekend brunch, but a disaster when eaten as a daily fare.

Some experts go into explaining the need for carbohydrates at breakfast, but as vegans every food you will eat will have carbohydrates, so I wouldn’t concern yourself with this unless you are a competitive athlete. Again, we are looking for good fiber with lean protein. What are some good lean vegan proteins?

Beans and grains are great sources. Beans pack the biggest wallop, and should become part of your breakfast line up. Here are additional suggestions:

  • Cereal with soy milk and fruit
  • Breakfast bean burrito with corn or whole wheat tortilla
  • Nut butter on high fiber toast
  • Tofu scramble made with NO OIL.

Source : Vegetarian Nutrition

Happiness Begins with Veggies!

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healthy veggiesBy Diana Cullum-Dugan, RD, LDN, RYT

If there was an eating style that made you happy, would you do it?

What if that same eating style helped keep your weight in the healthy range?  And reduced your risk of breast, bladder, and other cancers?  Would you then?

I’m even charged thinking that my risk of other diseases, like heart disease and diabetes that runs in my family, is lower with this eating style.

What if this eating style was really quite simple to follow, with no deprivation aspect, and fills you to satisfaction every single meal?  And is environmentally friendly?  Would you then?

So what is it?

Vegetarians have been studied extensively and recently, studies reveal that a vegetarian lifestyle is healthier overall.  In Nutrition Journal, vegetarians had less depression, anxiety and stress and overall, better moods than meat-eaters in the U.S.  The reason?  Vegetarians eat less animal-based essential fatty acids and more omega-3 from plants.  Sign me up!

People with diabetes have a higher incidence of colon, liver, pancreatic, and endometrial cancers.  The American Diabetes Association and American Cancer Society suggest more whole grains, fruits and vegetables and less red and processed meats which reduces the risk.

In the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, researchers say postmenopausal women can lower their risk of breast cancer with a diet of whole grains, fruits, vegetables, and flax and sesame seeds (great sources for lignans).

And, red meat and processed meat, because of their processing with nitrates and nitrites, and grilled meats because of the high temperature required in grilling, increase bladder cancer between nearly 20-30% (Cancer).

And another study in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, meat consumption contributed ONE POUND per year weight gain.  That doesn’t sound like a lot but multiply that times 10 years and you’ve got the beginnings of a chunky monkey.

Want to just see what a vegetarian diet could be like?  If you’re in the Boston area Oct 30-31, head over to the Reggie Lewis Athletic Center on Tremont Street for all-day-both-days Vegetarian Food Festival.  Vendors give away tastes of their product, many speakers entice you with veggie talks, and you can purchase veggie meals.  Take your reusable grocery bags – you’ll end up taking lots of samples with you.  It’s the BEST Veg Fest I’ve ever seen!

Source : Vegetarian Nutrition

Vegan Teen Athlete

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vegan snackBy Julia Driggers RD LDN

Being a vegan teen athlete is not complicated. It is easy for teens to receive proper nutrition for sporting events by eating a variety of foods. In general, teen athletes should receive the majority of their calories from complex carbohydrates, a moderate amount from protein, and a moderate to low amount from fat.  The bulk of these calories should be nutritionally dense, meaning they provide substantial amounts of vitamins and minerals. For example, nutritionally dense carbohydrates include whole grain breads and pastas, brown rice, quinoa, and whole grain flour. Most fruits and vegetables are nutritionally dense as are vegetarian proteins.

Protein is a key macro- nutrient that many athletes focus on.  Athletes should receive 0.5 to 0.8 grams of protein per pound. It is easy to meet these requirements on a vegan diet. A good tip is to include a protein food with every meal. This can be as simple as putting peanut butter on your morning bagel, adding nuts to your salad, cooking with beans, and drinking a high-protein milk alternative, like soymilk. Vegetable proteins like tofu, tempeh, seitan, and meat analogs are protein packed. Read labels to find the meat analogs also fortified with vitamins and minerals. Vitamin B12 and iron are two nutrients that vegans need to monitor. Vitamin B12 can be found in fortified foods, including soymilk, cereals, and nutritional yeast. Check the label to verify that the choice you make contains B12.  Foods high in iron include dark green leafy vegetables, soybeans, tofu, lentils and other dried beans, quinoa, fortified cereal, and raisins. To maximize absorption include a food high in vitamin C—such as orange juice, tomato sauce, or broccoli—when consuming foods high in iron.

Increased exercise means increased calorie needs to maintain body weight. Because a lot of vegan foods are low in calories, it may be important to increase calorie intake especially if you are participating in a strenuous sport. One way to add calories is to eat extra snacks throughout the day and increase the calories in your meals.  The table below provides a list of quick and easy 200-400 calorie snacks to add to your diet.

200-Calorie Snacks* 400-Calorie Snacks*
1 crunchy granola bar ½ cup guacamole dip with 1 cup corn chips
1 banana with 1 TB peanut butter 8 whole wheat crackers with ¼ cup hummus
6 ounces soy yogurt with fruit 1 bagel and 2 TB peanut butter
¼ cup mixed nuts ½ cup trail mix
1 ounce hard pretzels with ½ cup fruit juice 2 cups calcium-fortified orange juice and a granola bar

Add calories to your meals using these easy ideas!

  • Use oils or margarine on vegetables, rice, and pasta, add vegan cheese.
  • Add a commercial vegan sandwich spread like Veganaise® to your sandwiches.
  • Put slices of avocado on your salad.
  • Bulk up your breakfast-cereal with fruit, nuts, and raisins.

Adding calories is fun – be creative! However, if it is becoming difficult to maintain body weight, consider talking to a registered dietitian.

In conclusion, receiving proper nutrition for the vegan athlete is easy. Eating a variety of foods and taking in more calories during times of increased exercise are important.  Teen athletes are able to receive everything they need from a vegan diet to perform at their maximum potential.

For additional information check out our Sports Nutrition for Vegetarians resource.

*Used by permission from the Vegetarian Resource Group.

Julia Driggers RD, LDN is a Pediatric Dietitian at The Childrens Hospital of Philadelphia. She is very interested in Vegetarian and Vegan nutrition and regularly contributes to the Vegetarian Resource Group (VRG) Magazine/Website.

Source : Vegetarian Nutrition

It's Never Too Late To Live Longer

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It's Never Too Late To Live LongerEat Healthy After 70 & You'll Boost Chances of Reaching 80 by 24%

Say you've made it to the ripe old age of 70 after a lifetime of not-so-great eating habits -- why change now?

Because you may live longer, new research suggests.  
While the link between diet and longevity is well studied, many seniors think that after a certain age, what they eat doesn't really matter. Not true, according to a study just published in the Journal of the American Dietetic Association.

Scientists from the University of Maryland looked at the diets of 2,582 seniors (ages 70 to 79), categorizing them as mostly healthy foods (fruit, veggies, fish, poultry, whole grains, etc.), high-fat dairy (ice cream, cheese, less produce), sweets/desserts (doughnuts, cakes, cookies, etc.) and other dietary patterns. During the 10-year study, 739 people died.

Compared to the healthy foods group, the high-fat dairy eaters were 40% more likely to die, while the sweets group was 37% more likely to die during that decade. The healthy foods group also enjoyed significantly higher intakes of folate (+17%), vitamin B12 (+22%), and beta-carotene (vitamin A, +36%).
Such findings have important implications for our aging population, as the worldwide number of people over age 65 is expected to more than double to nearly 1 billion by 2030.

The effects of an unhealthy diet and lifestyle are cumulative -- yet also highly responsive to change. Previous research suggests that 75% of your longevity potential comes from choices which affect not just the length of life, but its quality as well. For example, one study found that seniors who ate over 2 cups of veggies daily enjoyed a 38% decrease in the rate of cognitive decline.

Exercise plays a key role too: Dr. David Nieman found that active older women had immune cells that functioned 67% higher than those of less active women.

Source : VegSource.com

The Dark Side of Recent Egg Headlines

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say no to eggsBy John Robbins

Egg lovers are rejoicing this week because the USDA, usually the last to notice anything resembling a genuine nutritional advance, has announced that eggs are much higher in vitamin D than previously thought, and also 14 percent lower in cholesterol than previously believed.

Leaving aside for the moment the question of how it is that scientific authorities could have been so wrong for so long about something as basic as the levels of vitamin D and cholesterol in eggs, the new numbers are happy news indeed for egg lovers. The egg industry is delighted to report that you can now eat up to 10 eggs a week and still stay under the recommended limit of 300 mg of cholesterol per day for healthy adults (provided, of course, that you consume no other cholesterol at all from any other source).

This is putting a sunny-side-up grin on the face of those who enjoy eating eggs and don't fancy eating their way to a heart attack. But if it's making egg-lovers smile, it's like mainlining Prozac for the egg industry, which as you might expect is wasting no time trumpeting the news that their products have been exonerated.

But wait a minute. There's something that's being overlooked in all the hoopla, something that might be even more important than the milligrams of cholesterol in an egg. Do we care how the hens are treated? About the kind of conditions in which they live, and the quality of the food they are fed? Do we care if the eggs are produced humanely and sustainably? If the new dietary information means we'll be eating more eggs that come from sick hens who live in abject misery, is this such a good thing?

As I wrote in "The Food Revolution", the sad fact of modern industrialized egg production is that layer hens are crammed together in filthy cages so small that the birds are not able to lift a single wing. The amount of space the birds are given is less than they would have if you stuffed several of them into a file drawer. One building will frequently house 30,000 hens packed together under these grotesquely crowded and seriously unhealthy conditions.

The birds are driven so insane by these miserable conditions that they would peck each other to death if they could. The industry, of course, doesn't want to see such a thing happen, because there's no profit to be made from dead hens who don't lay eggs. How, then, does the industry prevent it? Not by giving the hens more room, which would be the humane response, but by cutting off a sizable part of the hens' beaks, a process known euphemistically as "beak trimming."

What's a concerned consumer to do? Fortunately, the Cornucopia Institute has come out with an "Organic Egg Scorecard" that empowers consumers with accurate information. The scorecard rates companies that sell name-brand and private-label organic eggs, according to the criteria that are most important to the majority of conscientious consumers.

There are two things the Organic Egg Scorecard quickly makes apparent.

The first is that just because eggs are "organic" doesn't mean they are humanely raised. In fact, there are "organic" factory farm operations with more than 80,000 "organic" hens in a single building.

The second thing the Organic Egg Scorecard reveals is exactly which brands of eggs found in your local stores are produced using the best organic practices and with the most ethical regard for the hens. If you are interested in which eggs are sustainable and humane, and which are not, check it out.

The results may surprise you. For example, the private label brands sold by Trader Joe's, Safeway O Organics, Whole Foods 365 Organic, WalMart's Great Value and Costco's Kirkland Signature, get the lowest possible rating. This is because these companies were unable or unwilling to provide any meaningful information about how their chickens are housed, fed or treated. Unfortunately, reports the Cornucopia Institute, "the vast majority of organic eggs for private label brands are produced on industrial farms that house hundreds of thousands of birds and do not grant the birds meaningful outdoor access."

Many egg suppliers tout that their eggs are produced without hormones. That sounds great but is in fact meaningless, because unlike beef and dairy products, no eggs produced in the U.S. today are legally produced with hormones. Federal regulations prohibit the use of hormones in raising poultry.

Whole Foods, at least, has taken a step in the right direction by not selling any eggs that come from hens whose beaks have been "trimmed." Whole Foods shoppers can take a modicum of comfort in knowing that eggs bought there do not come from the worst of the nation's egg factories.

If you want the eggs from healthy and happy hens, you might want to take a step in the direction of food self-reliance and keep a few hens in your backyard. Or get your eggs from a neighbor or from a small-scale farm you can actually visit. Or purchase only those eggs which are highly rated by the Organic Egg Scorecard.

Personally, my favorite breakfast is guaranteed to be cruelty-free. It's oatmeal, with cinnamon, raisins and walnuts, which aren't added only for flavor. Oats are a comparatively low-glycemic index grain to begin with, but the addition of walnuts creates a nourishing breakfast with high protein content, high nutrient density, a healthy form of fat, and a very low glycemic index.

Here's my recipe for a tasty and hearty breakfast that will provide you with consistent blood sugar levels, and give you plenty of energy all morning. Serves three.

1 cup rolled oats
3 cups water
1/2 teaspoon salt
1/2 teaspoon cinnamon
1/3 cup raisins
1/3 cup walnuts

1. Place oats, water, salt, cinnamon and raisins in a covered saucepan and bring to a boil.
2. Turn down heat and simmer for 10 minutes, stirring occasionally.
3. Remove from heat, stir in walnuts and serve hot.

John Robbins is the author of many bestsellers including "The Food Revolution: How Your Diet Can Help Save Your Life and Our World," the classic "Diet For A New America," and "The New Good Life: Living Better Than Ever in an Age of Less." He is the recipient of the Rachel Carson Award, the Albert Schweitzer Humanitarian Award, the Peace Abbey's Courage of Conscience Award, and Green America's Lifetime Achievement Award. To learn more about his work, visit here.

Source : The Huffington Post

Farm to Fridge - The Truth Behind Meat Production

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WARNING! DISTURBING CONTENT! Viewer discretion is advised!

Mercy For Animals presents Farm to Fridge. Narrated by Oscar-nominee James Cromwell, this powerful film takes viewers on an eye-opening exploration behind the closed doors of the nation's largest industrial farms, hatcheries, and slaughter plants -- revealing the often-unseen journey that animals make from Farm to Fridge.

American Dietetic Associations Endorses Vegetarian and Vegan Diets

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healthy vegetarian diet“It is the position of the American Dietetic Association 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 disease,”.  The paper goes on to state that vegetarian and vegan diets are appropriate for every stage of life including pregnancy, lactation, infancy, childhood, adolescence, and athlete’s.

Journal of American Dietetic Association 2009;109:1266–1282

There are many health benefits to a well-planned vegetarian diet according to the American Dietetic Association.  These include preventing and treating heart disease, lowering LDL (low-density lipoprotein, the bad kind of) cholesterol, lowering blood pressure, obesity, type 2 diabetes and even cancer. Specifically increased fruit and vegetable intake is protective against cancer of the mouth, esophagus, stomach and lungs.  Soy food intake is associated with lower risk for breast cancer and decreasing the progression of chronic kidney disease.

Although on a negative note the research found that vegetarian diets can be associated with lower bone density and therefore possibly higher incidence of osteoporosis than non-vegetarians. In this case, vegetarians have to pay special attention to their vitamin D, calcium, vitamin K, potassium and magnesium intake. Also dementia can be increased due to vitamin deficiency of B-12.

This paper showed that a well-planned vegetarian or vegan diet is not only acceptable, but actually more beneficial than non-vegetarian diets when it comes to many chronic diseases. Although it is important to plan out a vegetarian diet that meets all of the current ADA (American Diet Association) recommendations in order to avoid some of the deficiencies in vegetarian and vegan diets.  Especially protein, omega-3 fatty acids, iron, zinc, iodine, calcium, vitamins D and B-12 .Use of supplements and fortified foods can be a helpful addition to your vegetarian or vegan diet.

White Poison: The Horrors of Milk

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White Poison: The Horrors of MilkBy Shanti Rangwani

The pus, blood, antibiotics, and carcinogens in milk -- and the chronic fatigue, anemia, asthma and autoimmune disorders caused by milk consumption -- do no body good.

Got milk? If not, then thank your lucky stars. Because if you do, medical research shows that you are likely to be plagued by anemia, migraine, bloating, gas, indigestion, asthma, prostate cancer, and a host of potentially fatal allergies -- especially if you are a person of color.

Ignoring this, the government declares that milk is essential to good health, subsidizes the milk industry to the tune of billions of dollars, and requires milk in its public school lunch programs. And celebrity shills sporting milk mustaches tell us that milk is rich in proteins, calcium, and vitamins -- and very cool to boot.

They forget to tell you about the dangers lurking in that innocuous-looking glass of white. Once criticized only by naturopaths and vegans, now the health effects of milk are being decried by many mainstream doctors. The supposedly hip milk mustache is actually a creamy layer of mucus, live bacteria, and pus.

Former Chairman of Pediatrics at Johns Hopkins University, Frank Oski, M.D. even has a book called Don't Drink Your Milk which blames every second health problem kids suffer on hormone-ridden commercial milk. Sixty percent of ear infections in kids under six years of age are milk-induced, and milk consumption is the number one cause of iron-deficiency anemia in infants today according to the American Association of Pediatrics.

But milk is also a racial issue. Almost 90 percent of African Americans and most Latinos, Asians, and Southern Europeans lack the genes necessary to digest lactose, the primary sugar in milk. The milk industry's response is classic: they have launched new campaigns arguing that non-whites can digest milk if they take in small sips during the day. There is a burgeoning industry worth $450 million a year churning out products designed to minimize lactose intolerance.

Lactose intolerance is the most common "food allergy," but to call it an allergy is to take a white-centric view that trivializes the fact that most of the world's people are not biologically designed to digest milk.

Milk does no body good, but for the vast majority of the world's people -- people of color -- it is a public health disaster.

No other animal drinks cow's milk, not even calves once they are weaned. The late Dr. Benjamin Spock, the U.S.'s leading authority on child care, spoke out against feeding "cow's glue" to children, saying it can cause anemia, allergies, and diabetes and in the long term, will set kids up for obesity and heart disease, the number one cause of death in this country.

Most of milk's much-vaunted protein is contained in casein -- which is also a raw material for commercial glue. Undigested, it simply sticks to the intestinal walls and blocks nutrient absorption.

The mainstream media and the government ignore the medical studies showing that milk is a serious health threat, in part because people of color are the main victims. The institutionalization of racism is highlighted by U.S. Department of Agriculture spokesperson Eilene Kennedy's statement on milk, that the government's recommended food pyramid is intended for "the majority of Americans. It doesn't communicate to all Americans."

The USDA continues to require that school lunch programs include milk with every meal, and recommend that we glug milk for calcium, even though Harvard studies show an increase in osteoporosis and bone-breakage in people who consume milk. It says we should drink milk to prevent heart disease (and is echoed by Larry King) even though saturated fat constitutes 55 percent of milk solids.

The dairy lobby perpetrates lies to ensure its profits. It benefits directly from the exaggerated support prices the government shells out for this "health food." The government pays over a billion dollars a year for surplus butter. A General Accounting Office (GAO) study concluded that a reduction in the government price support system would have netted consumers savings of $10.4 billion from 1986 to 2001. And the USDA pays inflated prices to purchase dairy products for both the Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) and federal school lunch programs -- milking the taxpayers and actually getting them to pay for poisoning 26 million school kids.

The milk lobby has whipsawed its way into the highest echelons of power. Staffers under Richard Nixon were indicted for accepting $300,000 from the dairy lobby for making milk part of the school lunch program.

Dr. Robert Cohen of the Dairy Education Board, a nonprofit organization dedicated to exposing the milk lobby, contends that the dramatic 52 percent rise in asthma deaths among minority kids in New York coincided with the surplus milk, cheese, and butter pumped into them under the USDA's free school lunch and breakfast giveaway programs. The incidence of asthma deaths may be even higher since asthma is not a reportable disease, and asthma deaths are sometimes certified as cardiovascular disease.

There is also a direct link between milk consumption and prostate cancer among African Americans, who have the highest incidence of this disease in the world. A study in Cancer has shown that men who reported drinking three or more glasses of whole milk daily had a higher risk for prostate cancer than men who reported never drinking whole milk.

The controversial Bovine Growth Hormone (BGH) -- banned in most countries -- is pumped into U.S. milch cows to increase annual yield (50,000 pounds of milk per cow today compared to 2,000 pounds in 1959). Milk from cows treated with BGH is likely to contain pus from their udders since the hormone leads to mastitis, or udder infection. BGH use results in a tumor-promoting chemical (IGF-I) that has been implicated in an explosive increase of cancer of the colon, smooth muscle, and breast.

The antibiotics dairy farmers use to treat BGH-caused infections in cows appear in their milk and greatly hasten human tolerance to most antibiotics, a potentially life-threatening state of affairs. The Center for Science in the Public Interest reports that 38 percent of milk samples in 10 cities were contaminated with sulfa drugs and other antibiotics.

A fightback is beginning. Protesters picketed New York City Mayor Rudolph Giuliani's planned milk promotion campaign with a photo of the mayor wearing a milk mustache over the caption, "Got Prostate Cancer?" Giuliani (who, like his father, has prostate cancer) dropped the campaign. And doctors from the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine (PCRM) persuaded Washington, D.C. Mayor Anthony Williams not to declare May 11 as "Drink Chocolate Milk Day" by presenting evidence that milk is harmful, especially to people of color.

The PCRM -- composed of some of the leading doctors in the U.S. -- has campaigned extensively in the health and consumer press and led a successful legal effort in 1999 to make dairy products optional in the federal food guidelines. The campaign was supported by a number of prominent civil rights organizations and leaders, including the Congressional Black Caucus, the NAACP, Martin Luther King, III, Jesse Jackson, Jr., the National Hispanic Medical Association, and former Surgeon General Joycelyn Elders.

The dairy lobby remains cozy with most medical practitioners to perpetrate its "drink milk" propaganda. However, not one of the 1,500 papers listed in Medicine that deal with milk points to its goodness -- only to the pus, blood, antibiotics, and carcinogens in milk, and the chronic fatigue, anemia, asthma, and autoimmune disorders milk consumption causes.

The time has come for the milk industry to face the kind of scrutiny that the tobacco companies face today. Meanwhile, discard the moo juice.

Shanti Rangwani is an allopathic doctor and a columnist for the Times of India

Source : AlterNet

7 Ways to a Heavenly Vegan Brunch

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Written by Jill Ettinger

One of the greatest things about brunch is that it is designed to be a feel-good meal. It's got a relaxed European atmosphere necessary to accommodate condensing two meals into one. People don't tend to brunch alone, so it's also a most wonderful way to connect with friends and family to make delicious, lasting memories.

As any vegan can likely vouch, breakfast can be the kiss of death for the non-meat eaters. Eggs and bacon seem to flavor every greasy bite of breakfast foods, aside from the juice. But brunch? Well that's a whole different story. Brunch can easily accomodate a vegan diet, deliciously.

The next time you're brunching, try some of these favorites anyone can enjoy:

Fruit is an essential part of any brunch. Sliced juicy melons, fresh & ripe berries, and of course, pineapple, are a must for a satisfying brunch. And don't forget the savory fruits: olives, sliced cukes, and try ripe avocado and tomato slices on toast. Top off with watercress or arugula, a pinch of salt and a wee drizzle of olive oil for a satisfying and hearty mouthful.

Potatoes are super versatile and a vegan staple. Make potato pancakes, or traditional home fries or hash browns, using non-dairy margarine or olive instead of butter.

Pancakes, waffles, French toast and all sorts of pastries can all be made vegan without eggs, butter or milk, and many can be made gluten-free too!

You don't have to go crazy with the vegan bacon to make a memorable brunch meal, but it can be pretty tasty and a lot healthier than the real stuff.

Non-dairy coconut or soy yogurts taste amazing and provide a plentiful serving of healthy bacteria. They go great with fruits, topped with toasted granola or plain.

Scrambled tofu is as easy to make as eggs and tastes great. Add your favorite veggies, and you can even make it look the same color as eggs (more on that in a bit). Start by sautéing your veggies (try carrots, zucchini and mushrooms) in a bit of olive oil. When tender, crumble 8 oz of firm or extra firm tofu into the mixture. Add ½ tsp of turmeric and paprika for color and taste, 2 tablespoons of nutritional yeast flakes and ½ cup of water. Mix well and cook over medium heat for 5-10 minutes. Add salt and pepper to taste.

Spreads are also a terrific brunch menu item. Walnut pate, white bean or chickpea hummus with fresh bread can really hit the spot. Bon apetit!

Keep in touch with Jill on Twitter: www.twitter.com/jillettinger

Source : Organic Authority

Vegetarian Meals for Toddlers

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Fresh fruits provide many key nutrients in a vegetarian toddler diet.According to the vegetarianism fact sheet at KidsHealth.org, parents can feed their toddlers a vegetarian diet filled with all the necessary nutrients. Keep foods fresh, seasonal and diverse to formulate a well-planned and nutritious toddler vegetarian diet. If you opt for a vegan food plan, emphasize plant-based sources of protein, iron and calcium. Consult with your child's health care provider regarding any dietary concerns.

Ovo-Vegetarian Meal
An ovo-vegetarian meal for toddlers begins with a base of scrambled eggs. Add diced vegetables to the egg mixture to boost the dish's nutritional value. For a delicious, nutritious side dish, serve a fresh fruit cocktail or blend together fresh or frozen berries, soy yogurt and a dab of honey for a smoothie. Sneak in a sprinkle of wheat germ to boost the smoothie's iron content.

Lacto-Ovo Vegetarian Meal
A lacto-ovo vegetarian meal allows you to integrate dairy products into your toddler meal recipes. According to the Children, Youth and Women's Health Service nutritional guide, children up to 2 years old should consume whole-milk products. Children from ages 2 through 5 should consume low-fat dairy products. For a healthful vegetarian toddler meal that allows children to play with their food, blend together low-fat cottage cheese and a sprinkle of garlic salt. Serve this simple spread with carrot sticks for dipping or lettuce and spinach leaves that children can wrap around the spread to create tacos. For dessert, serve berries topped with a dollop of vanilla yogurt and a sprinkling of cinnamon.

Vegan
A plant-based vegan diet offers many options for toddler meals. Try a protein-dense recipe such as homemade lentil or split pea soup, beginning with a base of sauteed vegetables and adding your legume of choice. Sneak in some extra vitamins by sprinkling in finely chopped carrots and green beans. Serve the soup with whole-grain crackers or toast. For dessert, mix up a frozen banana shake. Blend together frozen banana chunks and a splash of soy milk for a creamy, custardlike treat.

Source : Modern Mom

Diets for Vegans

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Plan your vegan diet to be as healthy as possible.Veganism is a way of life. Vegans won't exploit animals in any way and don't support cruelty to animals, which means that vegans won't eat animals or use them for clothing. Vegans differ from vegetarians by not eating products that come from animals, such as eggs or milk. Vegans only eat plant-based foods. If you, as the mother of your family, are vegan, chances are the whole family adopts this lifestyle, too. To get the proper nutrients, vegan families have to know about the types of food available for them.

Plan Well
As long as you plan well, you can safely eat a vegan diet during pregnancy, breastfeeding, infancy, childhood and adolescence, according to KidsHealth. In fact, if done properly, a vegan diet can be advantageous to a meat-eating one because of lower levels of fat and cholesterol and higher levels of fiber and antioxidants. However, all restrictive diets do pose a difficulty in getting the proper nutrients for your body. Following a vegan diet doesn't allow you to get enough vitamin B-12, for example, which you get in animal products. Vegans lack calcium in their diet, too.

What to Eat
What you need to focus on as a vegan is to get enough vitamin B12 for your red blood cells. You can get this through fortified soy products, enriched breakfast cereals, nutritional yeast or from supplements, according to KidsHealth. You need calcium for bone strength, which you can get from dark green vegetables, sesame seeds, red and white beans, almonds, figs, blackstrap molasses and fortified juice. Vegans should also get vitamin D to help absorb calcium. Getting out in the sun is one way to get vitamin D; other ways are through fortified soy milk or rice milk. Vegans can get protein through legumes, nuts and seeds; iron from chickpeas and tofu; zinc from whole-grain breads, wheat germ and tahini and riboflavin from mushrooms, sweet potatoes and broccoli. Because you don't eat fish or eggs if you are vegan, you lack omega-3 fatty acids; take supplements to make up for that.

Food Pyramid
Vegans have a food pyramid that MayoClinic.com recommends. The top of the pyramid are fats, and you need two servings a day. Next are fruits, which are also two servings a day. You need four servings of vegetables, which make the third rung of the pyramid. Legumes, nuts and other protein-rich foods make up the fourth rung. You need five servings per day of protein. Grains make up the bottom of the pyramid. You need six servings of grain per day.

Feeding Your Baby
Make sure that your baby gets enough calories. One way is to make your cereals thick rather than thin. Also, add some vegetable oil to the grains to increase the calories, suggests the Vegan Society. Soya bean oil or canola oil are better than sunflower, safflower or corn oils. Give your baby mashed lentils, mung beans or chickpeas and stir in some black molasses. Provide tofu prepared with calcium salt. This contains more calcium than cow's milk, according to the Vegan Society.

School
You'll probably have to pack lunches for your children when they go to school, but some schools provide vegetarian options. The Vegan Society suggests that you prepare your children by talking to them about why your family is vegan so that your children can answer the questions their classmates invariably ask. Some kids may find it difficult to be different, while others embrace the idea.

Source : Modern Mom Food

UN Urges Global Move to Meat and Dairy-free Diet

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Lesser consumption of animal products is necessary to save the world from the worst impacts of climate change, UN report says


An cattle ranch in Mato Grosso, Brazil. The UN says agriculture is on a par with
fossil fuel consumption because both rise rapidly with increased economic growth.

A global shift towards a vegan diet is vital to save the world from hunger, fuel poverty and the worst impacts of climate change, a UN report said today.

As the global population surges towards a predicted 9.1 billion people by 2050, western tastes for diets rich in meat and dairy products are unsustainable, says the report from United Nations Environment Programme's (UNEP) international panel of sustainable resource management.

It says: "Impacts from agriculture are expected to increase substantially due to population growth increasing consumption of animal products. Unlike fossil fuels, it is difficult to look for alternatives: people have to eat. A substantial reduction of impacts would only be possible with a substantial worldwide diet change, away from animal products."

Professor Edgar Hertwich, the lead author of the report, said: "Animal products cause more damage than [producing] construction minerals such as sand or cement, plastics or metals. Biomass and crops for animals are as damaging as [burning] fossil fuels."

The recommendation follows advice last year that a vegetarian diet was better for the planet from Lord Nicholas Stern, former adviser to the Labour government on the economics of climate change. Dr Rajendra Pachauri, chair of the UN's Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC), has also urged people to observe one meat-free day a week to curb carbon emissions.

The panel of experts ranked products, resources, economic activities and transport according to their environmental impacts. Agriculture was on a par with fossil fuel consumption because both rise rapidly with increased economic growth, they said.

Ernst von Weizsaecker, an environmental scientist who co-chaired the panel, said: "Rising affluence is triggering a shift in diets towards meat and dairy products - livestock now consumes much of the world's crops and by inference a great deal of freshwater, fertilisers and pesticides."

Both energy and agriculture need to be "decoupled" from economic growth because environmental impacts rise roughly 80% with a doubling of income, the report found.

Achim Steiner, the UN under-secretary general and executive director of the UNEP, said: "Decoupling growth from environmental degradation is the number one challenge facing governments in a world of rising numbers of people, rising incomes, rising consumption demands and the persistent challenge of poverty alleviation."

The panel, which drew on numerous studies including the Millennium ecosystem assessment, cites the following pressures on the environment as priorities for governments around the world: climate change, habitat change, wasteful use of nitrogen and phosphorus in fertilisers, over-exploitation of fisheries, forests and other resources, invasive species, unsafe drinking water and sanitation, lead exposure, urban air pollution and occupational exposure to particulate matter.

Agriculture, particularly meat and dairy products, accounts for 70% of global freshwater consumption, 38% of the total land use and 19% of the world's greenhouse gas emissions, says the report, which has been launched to coincide with UN World Environment day on Saturday.

Last year the UN's Food and Agriculture Organisation said that food production would have to increase globally by 70% by 2050 to feed the world's surging population. The panel says that efficiency gains in agriculture will be overwhelmed by the expected population growth.

Prof Hertwich, who is also the director of the industrial ecology programme at the Norwegian University of Science and Technology, said that developing countries – where much of this population growth will take place – must not follow the western world's pattern of increasing consumption: "Developing countries should not follow our model. But it's up to us to develop the technologies in, say, renewable energy or irrigation methods."

Source : The Guardian

Eating Less Meat Could Save 45,000 Lives a Year, Experts Claim

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Cutting meat consumption to 210g a week would hugely reduce deaths from heart disease and cancer, research shows.


Processed meat such as ham is particularly bad for health, says the FoE report.

More than 45,000 lives a year could be saved if everyone began eating meat no more than two or three times a week, health experts and Friends of the Earth claim today.

Widespread switching to low-meat diets would stop 31,000 people dying early from heart disease, 9,000 from cancer and 5,000 from strokes, according to new analysis of British eating habits by public health expert Dr Mike Rayner contained in an FoE report.

Dramatically reduced meat consumption would also save the NHS £1.2bn and help reduce climate change and deforestation in South America, where rainforests are being chopped down to grow animal feed and graze cows which are exported to Europe, the report states.

Eating too much meat, particularly processed meat, is bad for health because doing so can involve consuming more fat, saturated fat or salt than official guidelines recommend, the FoE say.

They do not advocate shunning meat altogether, but do urge people to eat meat no more than two or three times a week, with total weekly intake not exceeding about 210g – the equivalent of half a sausage a day. Average weekly intake at the moment is between seven and 10 70g portions.

Doing so would save 45,361 lives a year, according to research by Rayner and his colleagues in the British Heart Foundation health promotion research group at Oxford University.

They calculated that a switch to eating meat a maximum of five times a week would prevent 32,352 deaths, but another 2,509 people a year will die by 2050 if current meat consumption patterns continue. There are currently 228,000 deaths a year from three major conditions in whichfood intake plays a key role: heart disease, strokes or diet-related cancers, such as bowel cancer.

"We don't need to go vegetarian to look after ourselves and our planet, but we do need to cut down on meat," said Craig Bennett, FoE's director of policy and campaigns. "While the government has ignored the environmental aspect of high meat and dairy consumption, it can't ignore the lives that would be saved by switching to less and better meat."

Professor Steve Field, chairman of the Council of the Royal College of General Practitioners, agreed: "People shouldn't stop eating meat but they should eat less meat, especially processed meat, due to their salt and saturated fat content, and eat more fruit and vegetables."

Rachel Thompson, deputy head of science at the World Cancer Research Fund,, which has publicised the potential cancer risk of eating a lot of meat, said: "These figures add weight to what we have been saying about red and processed meat – that there is convincing evidence they increase the risk of developing bowel cancer, the third most common cancer in the UK. WCRF recommends eating no more than 500g of cooked red meat per week and to avoid eating processed meat – such as bacon, ham and salami."

Meat producers criticised the report. "The vast majority of consumers eat less than average recommendations of red meat already," said Chris Lamb of BPEX, which represents 20,000 pork producers in England. "It is over-simplistic to say that changing one element of the diet can have such a dramatic result. Red meat has a valuable role to play as part of a healthy, balanced diet."

Jen Elford, of the Vegetarian Society, added: "I find myself wondering why an organisation as courageous as Friends of the Earth can't bring itself to recommend a vegetarian diet. Of course less meat is better than more, but we can't address the scale of the environmental and health problems facing society without a wholesale shift away from animal protein."

Source : The Guardian

Ohio Dairy Farm Brutality

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On September 24, 2010, Billy Joe Gregg, Jr., a worker at Conklin Dairy Farms caught on hidden camera during a Mercy For Animals investigation maliciously abusing cows and calves, pleaded guilty to six misdemeanor counts of cruelty to animals.

Gregg was sentenced to eight months in jail, ordered to pay a $1,000 fine, and is barred from contact with animals for three years. Gregg must also receive counseling through a program that specializes in treating individuals involved in animal abuse cases.

Gregg's arrest and conviction stem from chilling undercover footage recorded during a Mercy For Animals investigation earlier this year at Conklin Dairy Farms in Plain City, Ohio.

During a four-week investigation in April and May, MFA's investigator documented farm workers:

  • Violently punching young calves in the face, body slamming them to the ground, and pulling and throwing them by their ears

  • Routinely using pitchforks to stab cows in the face, legs and stomach

  • Kicking "downed" cows (those too injured to stand) in the face and neck – abuse carried out and encouraged by the farm's owner

  • Maliciously beating restrained cows in the face with crowbars – some attacks involving over 40 blows to the head

  • Twisting cows' tails until the bones snapped

  • Punching cows' udders

  • Bragging about stabbing, dragging, shooting, breaking bones, and beating cows and calves to death

After viewing the footage, Dr. Bernard Rollin, Distinguished Professor of Animal Science at Colorado State University, stated: ""This is probably the most gratuitous, sustained, sadistic animal abuse I have ever seen. The video depicts calculated, deliberate cruelty, based not on momentary rage but on taking pleasure through causing pain to cows and calves who are defenseless.""

Sadly, cruelty to farmed animals in Ohio – no matter how egregious – is classified as a mere misdemeanor. Ohio has some of the weakest animal protection laws in the nation – ranking 43rd out of all 50 states. Further, no federal laws provide protection for farmed animals during their lives on the farm. Such inadequate state laws and the absence of federal laws lead to rampant abuse.

The deplorable conditions uncovered at Conklin Dairy Farms further highlight the reality that animal agriculture cannot be trusted to self-regulate and that meaningful federal and state law must be implemented and strengthened to prevent egregious cruelty to farmed animals.

"Gregg's punishment is a slap on the wrist compared to the unimaginable suffering endured by the animals who were victims of his malicious abuse," says MFA's Executive Director, Nathan Runkle. ""It's an outrage that in Ohio it's a mere misdemeanor to sadistically punch, beat and stab farmed animals, break their bones and otherwise torture them. This case should serve as a wake-up call to all compassionate citizens that Ohio must do more to strengthen its animal cruelty laws.""

Although many of the abuses documented at Conklin Dairy Farms are expressions of Gregg's sadistic pathology, numerous MFA undercover investigations at dairy farms, pig farms, egg farms, hatcheries and slaughterhouses have revealed that violence and abuse to farmed animals – whether malicious or institutionalized – run rampant nationwide.

Compassionate consumers can end their direct financial support of farmed animal abuse by rejecting dairy, and other animal products, and adopting a vegan diet.

Source: http://www.mercyforanimals.org/ohdairy/

4 Ways to Replace Eggs in Your Diet

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1. Tofu

2. Bananas, Applesauce, Pumpkin

As Tania Asnes tells us, these fruity substitutes are best for use in denser baked goods like loaves to create egg-and-oil-free treats. "Make sure to use a light hand when choosing applesauce and banana, since in large amounts they can make a recipe mushy, says Asnes. "Pumpkin, on the other hand, can create a very dense loaf."

3. Flax Seeds

Here's the deal, as explained by Post Punk Kitchen:

How to use it: 1 Tablespoon flax seeds plus 3 Tablespoons water replaces one egg. Finely grind 1 tablespoon whole flaxseeds in a blender or coffee grinder, or use 2 1/2 tablespoons pre-ground flaxseeds. Transfer to a bowl and beat in 3 tablespoons of water using a whisk or fork. It will become very gooey and gelatinous, much like an egg white. In some recipes, you can leave the ground flax in the blender and add the other wet ingredients to it, thus saving you the extra step of the bowl.

When it works best: Flax seeds have a distinct earthy granola taste. It tastes best and works very well in things like pancakes, and whole grain items, such as bran muffins and corn muffins. It is perfect for oatmeal cookies, and the texture works for cookies in general, although the taste may be too pronounced for some. Chocolate cake-y recipes have mixed results, I would recommend only using one portion flax-egg in those, because the taste can be overpowering.

Tips: Always store ground flaxseeds in the freezer because they are highly perishable. This mixture is not only an excellent replacement for eggs, it also contributes vital omega-3 fatty acids.

4. Egg "Replacer"

The most commonly used brand is Ener-G, which "mimics what eggs do in recipes, Greatly simplifies baking for people who cannot use eggs. It replaces egg whites as well as egg yolks in baking."

Read More : 4 Reasons to Avoid Eating Eggs

4 Reasons to Avoid Eating Eggs

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chicken abuseHave you ever realized there's no such thing as a vegan refrigerator? Try opening the nearest fridge and you'll find an egg rack along with a clearly marked butter tray and meat drawer. Eating animals and animal by-products is not just accepted, it's expected. As I've documented here several times, what's expected is not always grounded in reality.

4 Reasons to Avoid Eggs

1. Chicken Abuse

Most people don't know this, but chicken are inquisitive and intelligent animals. Chicken abuse not only happens in the U.S., it happens all over the world.

2. The Free Range Myth

As the good folks at Compassionate Over Killing explain: "The popular myth that 'free-range' egg-laying hens enjoy fresh grass, bask in the sunlight, scratch the earth, sit on their nests, and engage in other natural habits is often just that: a myth. In many commercial 'free-range egg farms, hens are crowded inside windowless sheds with little more than a single, narrow exit leading to an enclosure, too small to accommodate all of the birds at once. Both battery cage and 'free-range' egg hatcheries kill all male chicks shortly after birth. Since male chicks cannot lay eggs and are different breeds than those chickens raised for meat, they are of no use to the egg industry. Standard killing methods, even among 'free-range' producers, include grinding male chicks alive or throwing them into trash bags and leaving them to suffocate."

3. The Protein Myth

How much protein do you think we need? The American Journal of Clinical Nutrition says 2.5% of our daily calories should come from protein. According to the World Health Organization, it's about 5%. How does that work out in grams? A lot lower than the US average of 100 grams a day, that's for sure. "To consume a diet that contains enough, but not too much, protein, simply replace animal products with grains, vegetables, legumes (peas, beans, and lentils), and fruits," clarifies the Physician's Committee for Responsible Medicine. As long as one is eating a variety of plant foods in sufficient quantity to maintain one's weight, the body gets plenty of protein."

4. Cholesterol

Check this:

  • Rise in blood cholesterol level from consuming one egg per day: 12%
  • Associated rise in heart attack risk from consuming one egg per day: 24%
  • Risk of death by heart attack for average American male: 50%
  • Risk of death by heart attack for average vegan: 4%

Read More : 4 Ways to Replace Eggs in Your Diet

Physical Benefits of Going Vegan

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benefits of going veganIn addition to good nutrition and disease prevention, eating vegan also provides many physical benefits. Find out how a vegan diet makes your body stronger, more attractive, and more energetic.

  1. Body Mass Index. Several population studies show that a diet without meat leads to lower BMIs–usually an indicator of a healthy weight and lack of fat on the body.
  2. Weight loss. A healthy weight loss is a typical result of a smart vegan diet. Eating vegan eliminates most of the unhealthy foods that tend to cause weight issues. Read more about weight loss and a vegan diet here.
  3. Energy. When following a healthy vegan diet, you will find your energy is much higher. This blog post in Happy Healthy Long Life describes how NFL tight-endTony Gonzalez started eating vegan and gained energy–while playing football.
  4. Healthy skin. The nuts and vitamins A and E from vegetables play a big role in healthy skin, so vegans will usually have good skin health. Many people who switch to a vegan diet will notice a remarkable reduction in blemishes as well.
  5. Longer life. Several studies indicate that those following a vegan or vegetarian lifestyle live an average of three to six years longer than those who do not.
  6. Body odor. Eliminating dairy and red meat from the diet significantly reduces body odor. Going vegan means smelling better.
  7. Bad breath. Vegans frequently experience a reduction in bad breath. Imagine waking up in the morning and not having morning breath.
  8. Hair. Many who follow vegan diets report that their hair becomes stronger, has more body, and looks healthier.
  9. Nails. Healthy vegan diets are also responsible for much stronger, healthier nails. Nail health is said to be an indicator of overall health.
  10. PMS. When switching to a vegan diet, many women tell how PMS symptoms become much less intense or disappear altogether. The elimination of dairy is thought to help with those suffering with PMS.
  11. Migraines. Migraine suffers who go on vegan diets frequently discover relief from their migraines. Read more about the food-migraine connection in this article.
  12. Allergies. Reduction in dairy, meat, and eggs is often tied to alleviation of allergy symptoms. Many vegans report much fewer runny noses and congestion problems.