Cooking · Food · Last Meal · Things I love · Uncategorized · Vegan Treats

My End of the World Last Meal

Firstly, to get the “kvetching” (mustn’t swear) and intro out of the way…

Anti-vegans claim vegans are always thinking about food; they say it’s because we’re starving on crappy fake food and only need to down a bloody steak and wash it down with cow’s milk to get us focused on more important things in life than food, like they are, hahaha…hah. When omni or carny food lovers obsess about what they love to eat and blather loudly about it all, they’re affectionately called “foodies” who simply and naturally enjoy eating tasty stuff. Funny how that works out, isn’t it?

I absolutely love all of my everyday healthy vegan foods, but do dream of being able to stuff myself full of “forbidden” treats like pizza and cake…veganized of course. If only I could, without suffering the sorry and severe consequences.

I watched a video yesterday of all the strangest Last Meal requests of Death Row inmates (most of their menus being expectedly meat heavy), and it got me thinking, what would my preferred last meal be? If I were on Death Row I’d probably want little or nothing, since I lose my appetite and get sort of nauseous when totally stressed out, scared or depressed.

So I thought of another scenario…

Say that in some dummy’s fantasy, the media has reported that there’s a giant asteroid headed towards Earth and it will be here the day after tomorrow. You’re a foodie and your thoughts turn to what will be your final meal (or full day of gorging) before the big kaboom and your journey into the unknown, sans body. You have no idea what’s to come following that. Regardless, you’re gleefully happy and cannot wait for this spinning lunatic asylum full of death and unjust suffering to finally be finished off. So you’re going shopping (assuming any shops will be open), for ingredients if you’re a cook at heart, and/or for ready-made items that you sometimes wish you could eat yourself to death with, having blissed out in crazy taste-bud ecstasy for hours, possibly all day long with several breaks, since I eat nice and slow.

So, below are my choices…and I hope to see others’ Last Meal selections in the comments, but who cares about my hopes? Probably no one, sigh. Anyhow:

Everything’s VEGAN, naturally.

Serving sizes? No such thing! All you can eat…

• Green chili & black bean tamales (greasy!)
Source: Susy Languren Di Vegan – youtube
• Pizza with lots of Miyoko’s mozzarella and some hot peppers (also nice & greasy)
Source: avantgardevegan – youtube
• Shortbread cookies (again greasy, and nice & crumbly)
Source: lovingitvegan.com
• Glazed jelly donuts (What, me worry about sugar? No more!)
Source: Mayim Bialik’s Hannukkah Doughnuts
• Chocolate layer cake with lots of chocolate frosting (mmmm, more sugar and lots of deep brown chocolatey gooeyness)
Source: liliscakes.com
• Premium smooth peanut butter, lightly salted

And to wash it all down…
• Big tumbler of chocolate peppermint soy milk

That’s one huge pig-out for me because my maintenance calories are 1800, and a rough estimate of calories here is about 3800. That’s probably equal to my all-time pig-out record and possibly all I could eat without dropping dead (and I’d want to be fully conscious for the asteroid hit, heheh). Anyways, who’s counting calories any more on “D Day”? I must be nuts.

Of course I’d have plenty of extra food on hand and let my dog(s) (and family) stuff down as much as they could, too, since what dog or human wouldn’t love to gorge on all that in glazed-eyed, Buddha-bellied abandon, knowing there’s no tomorrow?

With my luck, after finishing that gut busting, weight packing, heart-attack, diabetes-chow feast, the asteroid would unexpectedly change course and this purgatory would grind on, and I’d be stuck bloated, several pounds heavier, and probably ripe for some dreaded, food-related, chronic disease.

Source: giphy.com
Oh well, the world’s end is only a dream, but still I pray.

 

Food · Health · Longevity Diets · Nutrition · Soy foods · Uncategorized · Vegan cooking

How to Have Healthy Glowing Skin as a Vegan

Source: StockSnap at pixabay.com

A lot of people have problem skin; either dry and flaky, inflamed and rash-prone, too oily, acne-prone, etc. Mainly in my twenties, while eating a “normal” diet largely made up of animal products, I had frequent bouts of cystic acne on my back of neck and back, sometimes on my face…it was pretty gross and embarrassing and I thought I’d never be rid of those nasty painful bumps. But eventually it all cleared up and now I only very occasionally get a pimple which goes away pretty quickly.

It’s my belief that pimples, etc., are the body’s way of ridding itself of toxins using the skin to expel them, but what do I know? There are all sorts of theories and advice regarding skin issues. One thing’s true though, I believe, and that’s that eating right and taking proper care of yourself can give you healthy, smooth skin. So below are ten foods that are great for your skin, which should go a long way towards solving any nasty skin issues.

Firstly, for a head start, avoid excess sugar, alcohol, and junk foods (like deep fried and loaded with salt). Drink plenty of water, and lead a healthy lifestyle; plenty of exercise, good sleep habits, gentle but thorough cleansing methods, etc.. Never leave makeup on overnight while sleeping, and use makeup sparingly, preferring the more natural products.

10 Skin-Healthy Foods (in random order)

1. Walnuts

Source: Maxmann at pixabay.com

For omega-3 fatty acids, vitamin E, selenium, protein, zinc, etc. Vitamin E and selenium are antioxidants, and omega-3 fats reduce inflammation in the body, leading to healthier skin. Other omega-3 vegan foods are: flaxseed meal, chia seeds, Brussels sprouts, and hemp seeds, among others.

2. Avocados

Source: Sandid at pixabay.com

For healthy, unsaturated fat which promotes healthy, supple, smooth skin. Avocados are a good source of vitamin E which is an important antioxidant that helps protect your skin from damage. Vitamin E is said to be more effective when combined with vitamin C, so a green salad including avocados and red bell peppers, etc., is always a great idea.

3. Tomatoes

Source: Esiul at pixabay.com

A great source of skin-healthy vitamin C, tomatoes also contain all of the main carotenoids including lycopene, which all protect the skin against sun damage, thus preventing wrinkles. Since the carotenoids are fat soluble, it’s best to eat them with a good fat like that from avocados, etc.

4. Organic Soy Foods

Source: Focusonpc at pixabay.com

Organic, because conventional soy foods are heavily genetically modified. Soy foods like tofu, soy milk and tempeh contain isoflavones which either mimic or block estrogen in the human body, and are said to benefit the skin. A small study of women showed that their wrinkles and skin elasticity improved after eating soy isoflavones for 2–3 months. After menopause, soy can improve skin moisture and increase collagen. Soy isoflavones are also said to protect the skin from UV damage and skin cancers.

5. Organic Strawberries

Source: Pasja1000 at pixabay.com

For vitamin C and other nutrients, organic strawberries are especially good. Vitamin C is an antioxidant that can prevent wrinkles by promoting elasticity. Other foods rich in vitamin C and other skin-healthy nutrients are oranges, kiwi, other berries, etc. Organic strawberries are much preferred over conventional due to strawberries being so absorbent, meaning they absorb and hold pesticides and other undesirable substances used in conventional farming.

6. Sunflower and Pumpkin Seeds

Source: Evitaochel at pixabay.com

For vitamin E, selenium, zinc and protein, all vital for healthy skin and good health in general. Preferably raw, but for better taste, lightly toasted is okay, just not as perfect as raw. All nuts and seeds are also good for the skin, but it’s good to put a limit on them as they’re quite high in calories.

7. Broccoli

Source: Sharonang at pixabay.com

Chock full of vitamins and minerals, including calcium, vitamins A and C, lutein, vitamin K, and sulforaphane. Vitamins A and C are covered elsewhere here, while lutein is a carotenoid similar to beta-carotene which protects your skin from oxidation. Sulforaphane is said to have anti-cancer effects, including some types of skin cancer, and to protect against sun damage and maintain your skin’s collagen levels.

8. Sweet Potatoes

Silentpilot pix
Source: Silentpilot at pixabay.com

For beta-carotene which functions as provitamin A, which is converted into vitamin A in a normal, healthy body. Sweet potatoes are the richest vegetable source of beta-carotene. Carotenoids keep the skin healthy by acting as a natural sunblock, preventing sunburn and cell death which lead to dry, wrinkled skin.

9. Organic Red and Yellow Bell Peppers

Source: SnapwireSnaps at pixabay.com

A great source of beta-carotene/vitamin A, bell peppers also are a good source of vitamin C which is necessary for creating collagen which is a firming and strengthening protein for the skin. It’s best to get only organic bell peppers, as these, like strawberries, are on the “dirty dozen” list for containing the most unwanted substances when conventionally farmed.

10. Dark Chocolate

Source: StockSnap at pixabay.com

Yes, chocolate, but only dark (dairy free) chocolate and only in moderation, since it’s high in sugar and calories. (Sugar is one substance that is unhealthy for the skin if overly indulged in.) Cocoa powder, of course, is sugar free and much healthier than sweetened chocolate bars. In a study of cocoa powder, after 6–12 weeks of consuming it, participants had “thicker,” moister skin, also less inflamed. In another study, dark chocolate was shown to protect against sun damage.

So there they are (among others of course), so enjoy skin-healthy foods regularly in your animal-free diet! After all, skin-healthy almost always translates to healthy overall.
Diet wars · Education · Food · Health · How to go vegan · Longevity Diets · Nutrition · Raising vegan children · Shopping · Uncategorized · Vegan diet

Taking the Terror out of the Whole Vegan Thing

UPDATED 8/15/18, added a few minor details.

A lot of people like to complain about how complicated, expensive and just plain impossible “The Vegan Diet” is, as their excuse for never trying, or for quitting and fitting back in with the corpse-eating animal lovers who fund all sorts of unspeakable animal abuse. Well, I decided to prove them to be mistaken in very basic terms, with an actual boilerplate, one-size-fits-most “Vegan Diet.”

Think as if we only had 12 basic foods to consume, including just one fortified processed food item, and a maximum of one supplement in pill form*, with the rest being whole plant foods with only a couple being milled or otherwise minimally processed. So for now, forget about the vast array of delicious foods and treats available to vegans just about everywhere, and think “simplest possible.”

So, just how simple can one’s vegan diet be to have full needed nutrition in a day?

If I had to choose, strictly for nutrition, one group of foods for the rest of my life, here they are in alphabetical order (see underneath Cronometer charts for notes). Keep in mind that this is not for taste or “excitement,” it’s just to show the ample nutrition in basic everyday plant foods:

1. Asparagus
2. Avocados
3. Broccoli
4. Carrots
5. Chickpeas
6. Figs**
7. Flaxseed Meal
8. Oranges
9. Peanut Butter (natural unsalted)
10. Sesame Seeds
11. Soy Milk – unsweetened, fortified w/calcium, vit. D, B12, etc. (counts as the one fortified item)
12. Whole Wheat Hot Cereal

*The one pill supplement is zinc at 1/2 of a 10 mg tablet or 5 mg.

**Figs are seasonal but dried figs are available year-round, or they can be picked from trees during their season, July–September in CA, or bought fresh, and frozen for out-of-season use such as in smoothies. Fig trees are actual treasures.

The “how” and details of it all from Cronometer.com (click to enlarge, chart is in two parts):

Continued…

NOTES…

“Special concerns” for vegans (but not only vegans):

The VITAMIN B12 is all from the fortified soy milk.

The CALCIUM is primarily from the fortified soy milk, then from the broccoli, figs, and oranges.

The ZINC is mainly from the 1/2 tablet (or 5 mg) supplement, then the broccoli and chickpeas.

The COPPER is a bit high at 2.8 mg, as the recommended is 2.0 mg, but the high zinc intake levels that out.

The VITAMIN D is all from the soy milk; any additional needed can be gotten from sunshine.

The great PROTEIN profile is mainly from the soy milk, broccoli, chickpeas, peanut butter, asparagus, wheat cereal, avocado, and carrots.

The VITAMIN K is primarily from the broccoli, then the asparagus and avocado. 801% is good because it’s said vit. K2 (as opposed to K1) need is total K multiplied by 15%, so that would equal 120% of needed K2.

The SELENIUM is primarily from the wheat cereal, then the asparagus, broccoli, and chickpeas.

The IRON is primarily from the broccoli, chickpeas and soy milk, then from the asparagus, wheat cereal, avocado, figs, and flaxseed meal.

The great VITAMIN C intake enhances the absorption of non-heme iron from plants.

The OMEGA-3 is primarily from the flaxseed meal, then the broccoli and avocado.

The low OMEGA-6 number is said to be a good thing, that we need far more omega-3 than -6.

The VITAMIN A is where it should be at 1202% because the vit. A need from plants is said to be 12 times more than from animal products.

IODINE isn’t tracked on Cronometer, but the 1/2 tsp. of iodized salt in my list takes care of iodine need for the day, although it does make the sodium a bit high…but still lower than most people get in a day.

For the SOY phobic, the soy milk can be replaced by any similarly fortified plant milk.

Of course, anyone with ALLERGIES or other problems with particular foods should replace them with harmless foods with similar nutrition.

No, you could not live “in the wild” like that…

…not without omitting the few processed items and being in a place where those whole foods are growing. But even without the processed items, one could get by for some time with a few other “wild” foods added. But think, could 7 billion+ people live “in the wild” at all without all sorts of technology and products? No, they could not. Everyone, even “wild man” survivalists, depends on manmade products every day. Vegans are not weird or deficient in that way, as is popularly claimed.

So, any new or struggling vegans out there needing a simple diet plan, the above would be a great basic outline for one. On top of everything else, it’s fairly inexpensive. So there really are no excuses for not being vegan. Please pass this along to any anti-vegan skeptics in your life.

Come on now, let’s get this thing done!

Do realize that as long as there’s even one slaughterhouse (or any other such place of bloody horrors) lurking behind our “civilizations,” there will be continuing violence and bloodshed among humanity.

Disclaimer

This article provides information that should not take the place of professional advice. I am not a nutrition or health professional but am sharing what I’ve learned through experience and from what I trust are good sources in regard to my own nutrition. If you have concerns, I encourage you to talk to a (vegan friendly) registered dietitian or other trusted professional about your dietary needs.

Images, aside from charts, are free from Pixabay.com.