Introduction to Veganism

Hi Everyone,

I thought I’d add a little introduction about becoming a Vegan.

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A vegan diet contains only plants (such as vegetables, grains, nuts and fruits) and foods made from plants.

Vegans don’t eat foods that come from animals, including dairy products and eggs.

Healthy eating as a vegan

You should be able to get most of the nutrients you need from eating a varied and balanced vegan diet.

For a healthy vegan diet:

  • eat at least 5 portions of a variety of fruit and vegetables every day
  • base meals on potatoes, bread, rice, pasta or other starchy carbohydrates (choose wholegrain where possible)
  • have some dairy alternatives, such as soya drinks and yoghurts (choose lower fat and lower sugar options)
  • eat some beans, pulses and other proteins
  • choose unsaturated oils and spreads, and eat in small amounts
  • drink plenty of fluids (the government recommends 6 to 8 cups or glasses a day)

If you choose to include foods and drinks that are high in fat, salt or sugar, have them less often and in small amounts.

See the Eatwell Guide for more information about a healthy diet.

It applies to vegetarians, vegans, people of all ethnic origins and those who are a healthy weight for their height, as well as those who are overweight.

The only group it isn’t suitable for is children under 2 years of age, as they have different needs.

Getting the right nutrients from a vegan diet

With good planning and an understanding of what makes up a healthy, balanced vegan diet, you can get all the nutrients your body needs.

If you don’t plan your diet properly, you could miss out on essential nutrients, such as calciumiron and vitamin B12.

Vegan sources of calcium and vitamin D

Calcium is needed for strong and healthy bones and teeth. Non-vegans get most of their calcium from dairy foods (milk, cheese and yoghurt), but vegans can get it from other foods.

Good sources of calcium for vegans include:

  • fortified unsweetened soya, rice and oat drinks
  • calcium-set tofu
  • sesame seeds and tahini
  • pulses
  • brown and white bread (in the UK, calcium is added to white and brown flour by law)
  • dried fruit, such as raisins, prunes, figs and dried apricots

A 30g portion of dried fruit counts as 1 of your 5 A Day, but should be eaten at mealtimes, not as a between-meal snack, to reduce the impact on teeth.

The body needs vitamin D to regulate the amount of calcium and phosphate in the body. These nutrients help keep bones, teeth and muscles healthy.

Good sources of vitamin D for vegans include:

  • exposure to sunlight (particularly from late March/early April to the end of September) – remember to cover up or protect your skin before it starts to turn red or burn (see vitamin D and sunlight)
  • fortified fat spreads, breakfast cereals and unsweetened soya drinks (with vitamin D added)
  • vitamin D supplements

Read the label to ensure the vitamin D used in a product isn’t of animal origin.

Vegan sources of iron

Iron is essential for the production of red blood cells. A vegan diet can be high in iron, although iron from plant-based food is absorbed by the body less well than iron from meat.

Good sources of iron for vegans are:

  • pulses
  • wholemeal bread and flour
  • breakfast cereals fortified with iron
  • dark green leafy vegetables, such as watercress, broccoli and spring greens
  • nuts
  • dried fruits, such as apricots, prunes and figs

Vegan sources of vitamin B12

The body needs vitamin B12 to maintain healthy blood and a healthy nervous system.

It’s only found naturally in foods from animal sources. Sources for vegans are therefore limited and a vitamin B12 supplement may be needed.

Sources of vitamin B12 for vegans include:

  • breakfast cereals fortified with B12
  • unsweetened soya drinks fortified with vitamin B12
  • yeast extract, such as Marmite, which is fortified with vitamin B12

Vegan sources of omega-3 fatty acids

Omega-3 fatty acids, primarily those found in oily fish, can help maintain a healthy heart and reduce the risk of heart disease when eaten as part of a healthy diet.

Sources of omega-3 fatty acids suitable for vegans include:

  • flaxseed (linseed) oil
  • rapeseed oil
  • soya oil and soya-based foods, such as tofu
  • walnuts

Evidence suggests that plant sources of omega-3 fatty acids may not have the same benefits in reducing the risk of heart disease as those in oily fish.

But if you follow a vegan diet, you can still look after your heart by eating at least 5 portions of a variety of fruit and vegetables every day, cutting down on food that’s high in saturated fat, and watching how much salt you eat.

source:https://www.nhs.uk/live-well/eat-well/the-vegan-diet/

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What’s Really In Meat?

Hi Everyone,

The next time you tuck into your Burger or Sunday Roast, stop for a minute to think about what you are actually eating, especially if it’s not 100% organic.

Below is a list of ten products you will find in all Supermarket meats and regulations allow it to happen.

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  1. Arsenic
    Farms feed chickens and pigs arsenic to help ward off infections in their filthy living conditions and to turn the animals’ flesh the pink shade that is considered appetising – because nothing says “appetising” like poison.
  2. Poo
    When animals’ intestines are torn open during slaughter, faeces spill out onto their flesh. So when people buy meat, they’re getting – well, sorry – crappy food.
  3. Industrial runoffWho would head down to the local river, whip out a glass and gulp down some river water? No one? Well, then people might want to avoid eating fish, who are contaminated with the pollutants that run into waterways from our tanneries, factories and industrial plants as well as manure runoff from pastures.
  4. Hormones                                                                                                                                 Did you want a side of HRT with your fish and chips? How about a splash of oestrogen in your milk? Traces of contraceptives and other chemicals in the water supply have led to fish becoming “feminised”, with male fish laying eggs, and cows’ milk comes with an added dose of sex hormones.
  5. Calf-stomach lining

    Many cheeses are made with rennet, an enzyme taken from calves’ stomach lining. Does eating babies’ stomachs make you sick to yours?

    6. Pus

    Cows on dairy farm often suffer from mastitis, a painful inflammation of the udders caused by bacteria. Their bodies try to fight off the infection by producing pus. And guess where the pus goes – into the milk and into the milk-drinker’s mouth.

    7. Parts of a totally different animal

    There could be a horse in your lasagne or a pig in your “beef” meatballs. Given all the recent scandals, we’re just wondering what “surprise” ingredient is going to turn up next.

    8. Drugs

    Lots and lots of drugs. Animals on farms are routinely fed massive doses of antibiotics (even if they’re not sick) with alarming consequences for antibiotic resistance and the emergence of dangerous “superbugs”.

    9. Diseased organs
    If you’ve ever eaten foie gras, you should know that the diabolical “delicacy” is made from the livers of ducks and geese who have been force-fed until they’re desperately ill.                                                                                                                      10. Pink slime

This nauseating paste is made by sending animals’ bones through a machine that                scrapes off the last bits of flesh and blood then treating the resulting mass with                    ammonia and dyes. The “mechanically recovered meat” is the main ingredient of chicken nuggets and other processed meats.

Top Vegan Restaurants

Hi Everyone,

Eating out can be challenging at the best of times for Vegans, however, more and more restaurants and pop-up Vegan chains are opening. As well as established restaurants expanding their menus for Vegans.

Vegan-Restaurants

Below, is a top list of 22 Vegan-friendly restaurants to explore.

1  Wagamama

Wagamama are doing a Vegan Katsu Curry! “The rumours are true. vegan katsu curry has arrived.

Byron

The Beetnik, which they say “comprises a beautifully flavor some beetroot falafel patty, freshly made to Byron’s own recipe and topped with baby kale, smashed avocado, tomato, pickled red onions, red pepper ketchup and a lime-dressed rainbow slaw.”

3  The Real Greek

Dedicated Vegan Menu, packed with thirty, flavor some vegan dishes that pay homage to Greece’s rich heritage of vegan cooking including Jackfruit Stifado and Vegan Moussaka.

4  By Chloe

Vegan fast food chain with several restaurants across the US. Their burgers have previously named the best veggie burgers in New York, and by the look of the Instagram feed, we’ll be queueing round the block for them.

5  Zizzi

Vegan zucca pizza (tomato, mozzarella alternative, roasted butternut squash, caramelised balsamic onions & spinach) and the vegan pepperonata pizza (Tomato, mozzarella alternative, fire-roasted peppers, sunblush tomatoes, hot roquito chillies & pea shoots).

6  Itsu

Itsu have just launched a new hot food menu which features some delicious new vegan options including: Quinoa falafef & veg rice bowl, Veggie gyoza noodles and detox miso!

7  Carluccio’s

The menu at Carluccio’s clearly outlines their vegan options, including a tomato and basil spaghetti, sautéed mushrooms, Carluccio’s salad and a Sicilian aubergine stew.

8  The Diner

The Diner is launching their first all vegan/vegetarian menu, serving everything from vegan pancakes to a dirty burrito and dairy-free mac ‘n’ cheese.

Following the launch at The Strand on the 4th October the exclusive menu will debut at the Islington site from the 10th October.

9  Pizza Hut

Pizza Hut are trialling a vegan cheese option throughout the UK for an eight week period, to see if the meat-free alternative is popular.

10  Firezza

Firezza’s vegan range is a must-taste for anyone lookig to indulge in delicious crispy pizzas topped with vegan cheese and range of animal-free toppings of your choice

11  Las Iguanas

Las Iguanas have a whole menu dedicated to their vegan dishes, including portobello mushroom fajitas, a fiesta ensalada and veggie chilli.

12  Giraffe

Vegan stuff at Giraffe includes the Indo-Coco Curry, the super San Fran salad and edamame tapas – made with soybean pods with chilli, garlic, ginger and soy sauce.

13  Leon

Leon offer the best selection of vegan boxes and sides, as well as sauces, including the quinoa salad shown here, a sweet potato and okra stew and a Brazilian black bean box. The dream.

14 Yo! Sushi

You might think all sushi is raw fish, but that’s definitely not the case at Yo! Sushi – think vegetable tempura, yakisoba and inari and kaiso sushi.

15 Ask Italian

Not only can you make your own vegan pizza at Ask Italian, but they have three pasta options, a salad, starters and desserts that don’t use animal products.

16 Toby Carvery

We’re not joking when we say Toby Carvery offer a seeeeriously good vegan Sunday lunch: lentil cottage pie, butternut squash crumble and spiced chickpea wellington with all the trimmings.

17 Bella Italia

The range at Bella Italia might not be huge, but there’s a vegan salad/pasta/and pasta classico to get your teeth into.

18  Pizza Express

Pizza Express offer various options to make a three-course vegan menu: olivers for starter, the Pianta pizza and the new Coconut Delight pudding – made with coconut shavings and coconut milk.

19 Wetherspoons

On Wetherspoons’ vegan menu, they state that you can ask for loads of their dishes without animal product on. Other vegan dishes include the onion Bhajis, samosas, pomodoro pasta and the hash browns (all you need really).

20  Nando’s

There are quite a lot of options at Nando’s, providing you specify what you do and don’t want. Order the veggie wrap/burger/pitta without the mayo, the quinoa salad without the feta cheese or the portobello mushroom without the halloumi.

21 Prezzo

Vegan at Prezzo? Go for the penne arrabbiata, pappardelle (pictures) or a pizza bjase, which is vegan, without cheese.

22 Wahaca

Although the menu doesn’t specify are things are vegan – but rather says vegetarian – Wahaca’s offerings include plantain tacos, the summer vegetable enchilladas (without cheese) and the cactus/courgette burrito.

 

Street Food Vegan Style

Hi Everyone,

Check out these proper Vegan Street Foods!

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Order: 2 fried pieces and chips

The Run-down: Yes. Temple of Seitan have opened a bricks and mortar site named Temple of Hackney. Temple of Seitan have made waves this year by opening the first vegan ‘chicken’ shop in London – the team are seriously turning up the heat (coconut oil) on the vegan offering in the capital. As the name suggests, Temple of Seitan specialise in one product: seitan. If you’re not familiar with seitan, it’s derived from the protein portion of wheat. Take a bite of their crispy, fried seitan doused in house dressing and nestle in a fluffy bap, and tell us that it doesn’t taste good.

Where: 10 Morning Lane, Hackney, London E9

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Order: Red Spiced Bean Stew – slow cooked gently spiced black eye bean stew sprinkled with ground cassava. 

The Run-down: London’s best vegan street food for when you fancy something different. What do you get when you mix Ghanian food with some of the friendliest staff in Brixton? Their hand-cut plantain chips are, without doubt, a taste sensation. In keeping with the plantain theme, try the plantain pancakes with the bean stew.

Where: 49 Brixton Station Rd, London SW9 8PQ

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Order: Falafel Wrap –  hummus, falafel, baby leaves, lightly dressed cabbage slaw, pomegranate molasses and chilli sauce

The Run-Down: Falafel is the greatest thing fava beans has ever given us. Fact. And Nazari serve an almighty falafel wrap. After years of development and taste tests, Nazari’s falafel has created the ultimate version of this classic Middle Eastern dish.  If you’ve been on a mission to find London’s finest falafel. The quest is over: you’ve found it. Swerve the yogurt mint dressing to make this bad boy wrap vegan friendly.

Where: KERB Camden Market, West Yard, Chalk Farm Road, London NW1 8AF

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Order: Noodle Bowl – vegan udon noodle stir-fry with mixed veggies, beansprouts and roasted chilli oil, toped with ‘char siu’ crumbled and lime.

The Run-down: Hot, hot dang. Cook Daily is everything you could dream of, and quite possible more when it comes to South Asian inspired vegan fare. This Boxpark favourite is thee place to go for your noodle soup and coconut curry fix. And their full English with tofu scramble, tomatoes, greens, vegan sausages and bacon, and house brown sauce will raise a smile in your most most darkest of hangover days.

Where: Box Park Shoreditch, 2-10 Bethnal Green Road, London E1 6GY

Spirituality & Veganism

Hi Everyone,

Thank you for following and sharing my blogs.

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I’d like to share with you my thoughts on the association of Spirituality and Veganism, I am a spiritualist by choice and fully respect all notions of other spiritual or non-spiritual beliefs.

Which leads me to write to you about my analysis of the pathways that link Spirituality and Veganism, the two of which combine to form a profound personal state of ‘Mindfulness’, in which we are connected within the present world and time by our mind, body, and soul.

This experience and awareness are not the same for everybody and to some extent may not make sense to your logic, however, if you are willing and patient the experience and personal unfoldment can be achieved.

To understand this, Spirituality (Mindfulness) essentially is gaining a better and full control of our ‘Superego’ state. We all have this inner part to us, as explained by Sigmund Freud, this develops from birth into childhood and then in adulthood, it solidifies.

How does this relate to Veganism?.

Well, our need for meat or dairy is driven by ‘our ‘Superego’ state, which is to rule over animals and have the ultimate power of killing to consume, it’s not our Spirituality or bodies needing to fulfill this urge it is our primitive Superego state.,

Essentially and it is quite simple, embracing our Spirituality draws us back to our pure soul state, where Earth foods produced from the soil is eaten. This is where our ‘Superego’ cannot hold its power and control us to kill and consume meat.

Entering this state of Spirituality (‘Mindfulness) through Veganism is a powerful and lasting experience and one that is felt within a short time, you will re-evaluate and take control over your ‘Superego’. Setting yourself free from the limits of confirming to the liberation of your spiritual self and understanding.

Being mindful gives you confidence in knowing you have control over your body, mind, and soul, plus what you consume. In other words, you are experiencing your true self.

One final thought for you, when mankind was first established on Earth the average life expectancy as it is written was over 600 years old, the reason?

100% Plant-based diet.

Please like and share.

 

 

 

Top 10 Benefits of Veganism

Hi Everyone,

If you’ve been reading about Veganism or maybe you have thought to your to try it for a month, my answer is ‘Go For It’, give yourself a four-week challenge cutting out meats and dairy.

You will feel the difference.

Here are some of my top ten tips to encourage you or your friends:

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1. Nutritional value

Several studies have reported that vegan diets, when followed correctly, tend to contain more fibre, antioxidants, potassium, magnesium and vitamins A, C and E. Vegan diets are packed full of essential nutrients, but in the absence of meat, it is vitally important that we make sure we are still consuming all of the correct amounts of proteins in other forms

2. Our moods

Research has revealed that vegans may be happier than their meat-eating counterparts. In fact it was discovered that vegans and vegetarians had lower scores on depression tests and mood profiles when compared to fish and meat-eaters.

3. Disease prevention

Due to the fact that they contain fewer saturated fats, vegan diets have been shown to reduce heart disease risk and what’s more, data shows conclusively that vegans and vegetarians suffer from fewer diseases caused by a modern Western diet (e.g. coronary heart disease, hypertension, obesity type 2 diabetes, diet-related cancers, diverticulitis, constipation, and gall stones, among several others).

4. ​​Fewer migraines

As well as playing its role in reducing the risks of certain diseases, the vegan diet can also help to reduce the onset of migraine attacks. Migraines are often linked to our diets and food is a common trigger. Foods like chocolate and cheese are also common culprits. Vegan diets, especially organic ones are much purer and much less likely to be triggers for an attack.

5. Weight loss

A bonus to sticking to a vegan diet is the positive effect it has on our figure. Vegans typically weigh less as a result of a diet comprised of fewer calories in the form of grains, legumes, nuts, seeds, fruits, and vegetables.

6. Improving athletic performance

While most active individuals focus on protein intake, more and more athletes follow a high-carbohydrate, good-fat, and vitamin and mineral-rich vegetarian diet for optimum sports performance. Conflicting studies exist, but the number of world-class vegetarian sportsmen continues to rise, world tennis stars and sisters Venus and Serena Williams for example, announced they were going vegan in 2011.

7. Our skin

Vegans tend to have better vision and less macular degeneration – all that extra vitamin c and consequent collagen leads to much better skin.

8. Protecting the environment

A plant-based diet is better for the planet as it requires much less energy and farmland to feed a vegan. The production of meat and other animal products places a heavy burden on the environment– from crops and water required to feed the animals, to the transport and other processes involved from farm to fork.

9. Balancing hormones

Hormones such as oestrogen can be responsible for causing breast cancer if levels become too excessive. A New York study found levels of oestrogen can be increased by animal fats. Vegans have significantly lower oestrogen levels than non-vegans, in part because of the lower fat content of their diet.

10. ​Longevity

Vegans have been found to enjoy longer and healthier lives when compared to meat-eaters.

I hope the above gives you some inspiration to give it a try or to spread the word, please continue to share my blogs.

 

 

Vaganism and Activists Don’t Mix

Hi Everyone,

Just thought I’d share my thoughts.

The other day on Good Morning Britain (GMT), Piers Morgan put the so-called 15 minutes of fame Vegan activist Joey Carbstrong to shame in an interview.

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Veganism is not in any way about being an activist, true Vegans accept meat eaters and merely promote the benefits and knowledge of having a plant-based diet.

It really annoys me when characters like Carbstrong are given the platform to talk rubbish and claim to be Vegans when they, in fact, don’t value life or respect people who are meat eaters.

Veganism is about nature, mindfulness and valuing our bodies and Earth.

As Veganism continues to grow I will do my best to spread the word and give my meaning and understanding as to what I see as being ‘New World Vegan’.

Please continue to share and like.