Antibiotics and animal farming · Bogus arguments against veganism · Food · Health · Nutrition · Soy foods · Uncategorized · Vegan diet

NATTO, a heinous punishment for vegans?

Yes, you read the title right.

I’ve long thought natto was just a slightly disgusting fermented soybean product that might be easy to eat a couple of tablespoons of per day for ample vitamin K2 in our diets. But I hate slime and strings so I never planned on trying natto. But just today I tried it for the first time, just a tablespoonful.

Well. Never again! It’s awful. Period.

I won’t even attempt to describe the texture and taste. One has to experience it firsthand. All I can say is that anyone who claims to like or even love natto has some vastly different sort of taste buds than I do, or that they’re in the natto business and plugging for the stuff. Wow. Nasty!

One good thing though:

My dog Tyler likes natto! At first he took a small taste and got a freaked out look; then he dug in and wanted more, so I let him eat about a tablespoonful. The rest of what I bought (about 1/2 cup) will be going to Tyler a little bit at a time. Best of all, it’s good for dogs!

Thank goodness dogs like disgusting smells, tastes and textures. Although my other dog Mattie just looked at the stuff, smelled it closely and said, oh HELL no! So we see again how dogs are total individuals with their own ideas. I’m with Mattie on this one.

Look at these adorable animals contemplating and munching on natto:

I don’t get how anyone can take a second bite.

What’s all this about? you might ask.

Well, it’s about vitamin K2 being yet another of those vital nutrients that vegans are said to be stupidly depriving ourselves of by not eating “hard cheeses” and other animal products. Turns out this is a nasty load of bunkum. I do believe natto being touted as the only ample source of “real” vitamin K2 for vegans is a diabolical punishment devised by certain unnamed vested interests. This belief came about after I tried to gag down a tablespoonful.

Read all about vitamin K2 HERE …Informative article, EXCEPT for the mention of one animal study, and of tempeh as a source of preformed K2. Tempeh has to be fermented with bacillus bacteria to have K2 and almost all tempeh in stores is NOT…it’s fermented with Rhizopus mold…so has little or no preformed K2.

So anyways, back to natto. You wanna be a vegan, do ya, well here then, you gotta eat natto or have all your bones and teeth dissolve!  But no, we do not. I actually wish I hadn’t tried natto, that’s how bad it is. It inspired me to type and type and rant and rant.

To boot, most natto isn’t vegan!

To make things even worse, it turns out natto is often not vegan. Most is made in Japan and fermented using bacteria that was grown on gelatin which is made from animal skin, cartilage and bones or from fish, and the brown sauce that usually comes with it contains fish.

So there you go, vegan, see how impossible your little ethical way of life is? Give it up! Have a bacon-cheeseburger!

Nah, untrue, meat/dairy/egg pushers. Not buying your lies, won’t even take them for free.

I’ve studied vitamin K2 in depth and have come to three in-depth conclusions:

1) Vitamin K2 is separate from K1 in that K2 regulates calcium* placement in our bodies, keeps calcium out of where it shouldn’t be, and places it where it’s needed, in bones and teeth. It’s totally different from the function of K1 which is mainly for blood clotting ability, but anyone can search and read about K1’s vital functions.

*Calcium is easy to get as a vegan as long as you’re eating plenty of good food (like greens), and fortified plant milks are an extra assurance. See HERE for full advice and scroll down for food list. Also note that for proper calcium absorption you need enough vitamin D (not megadoses!) and magnesium. Vegan D3 supplement is available, aside from the natural source: sunshine. NOTE that too much vitamin D supplement will cause you problems with K2, so go easy on the D supplement. And magnesium is in many plant foods, easy to get.

2) Nutritional requirements don’t even mention vitamin K2—when they list vitamin K it always means K1, not K2—likely because of THIS STUDY…which shows me that K2 is formed as needed in our distal small bowel as needed, possibly regardless of our K1 intake.

In that study they deprived the human subjects of K1 then measured how much K2 their bodies produced, and determined how it was produced…which turned out to be through bacterial synthesis in the small intestine.

If I’m misunderstanding the linked study, I hope someone more knowledgeable will let me know how by commenting below (without being snippy).

3) All that aside about K2 being formed in our bodies as needed, it’s still a very good idea to eat lots of leafy greens for calcium etc. and vitamin K1 (which is also a vital nutrient that most people are lacking in). Most everyone, except for people taking the blood thinner Warfarin, can eat a good amount of greens. And people with NORMAL digestive tracts NOT MESSED UP BY ANTIBIOTICS, etc., can convert vitamin K1 to K2.

Kale is especially rich in K1. It’s said that the conversion rate is about 15%, so with 1 cup of cooked kale providing 1180% of your needed vitamin K1, you’d be getting plenty of K2 from the conversion. There are several other plant foods containing lower but good amounts of vitamin K1, such as spinach, broccoli, Brussels sprouts; and lesser so, grains, avocados, etc. So getting ample K1 as a vegan should not be hard at all. Thus, our K2 should be no problem either as long as we’re eating good nutritious food with a conscious effort to eat greens daily.

IMPORTANT: The K vitamins are fat soluble so should be eaten with a bit of fat like avocado, nuts, etc., for proper utilization.

If still in doubt about your K2 need being met, you can use a supplement or find some vegan natto and gag it down like a brave little trouper.

Ew. I’ll rely on the greens.

Now, isn’t it all special?

Just think. All this fuss, simply because vegans don’t consume dead animals, their eggs and their babies’ milk. Because we eat vegetables, fruits, beans, grains, nuts, etc. If we were eating pancakes, bacon, eggs, weird lunchmeat sandwiches on white bread, sweet soda pop, sugar & fat loaded milkshakes, mystery meat sausages, rich pastries, etc., i.e., tons of salt, grease, grossness, flour, and sugar, like most normal people do, no one would be bothering us about nutritional devastation.

It all resembles a sort of mass insanity borne from a collective guilt over knowing that what goes on in slaughterhouses, etc., etc., is just unspeakably wrong. Nightmarishly so. So people must demonize veganism, or at least convince themselves it’s impossible and dangerous.

About 96% of humans are naturally highly conscience driven (with 4% being true sociopaths with zero conscience). But most people allow themselves to be turned into quasi-sociopaths, for convenience. We turn some people into sociopaths, and support and coddle true sociopaths, to have someone to do our dirty, sadistic tasks which we prefer are kept hidden.

If you haven’t already, it’s easy to escape from that degradation and insanity: go vegan and stay with it. And eat your greens!

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Food · Health · How to go vegan · Human behavior · Love · Nutrition · Personal memoirs · Raising vegan children · Uncategorized · Vegan cooking · Vegan diet

12 of My Childhood Favorites—Veganized

First, a primer on my past love-hate thing with food, and a bit of personal nostalgia and other rambling.

I was big into food as a kid, even before my dad owned a popular Italian restaurant just outside of Los Angeles in the 1960s. We always had lots of tasty foods in our life and even more so from the restaurant which we all spent a lot of time at, along with our friends. See the 🍝 items below for those favorites inspired by my dad’s restaurant fare. All their recipes were invented by him and his brother, and they certainly had a way with the food!

Here is the only mention of the restaurant I can find online; search David B.’s comment and his mention of “Reggio’s”: http://maps.latimes.com/neighborhoods/neighborhood/monterey-park/comments/. Note that our restaurant wasn’t actually in Monterey Park but was on the Montebello side of its border, and David B. says it’s a Chinese restaurant now but actually it’s a Chinese laundromat and boba/smoothie bar.

Here’s an old pic of the restaurant’s namesake, the region of half my roots, where my dad was born and lived for a short time before the family immigrated to the USA’s east coast:

Reggio Calabria, Italy, 4 years before my dad was born.

So, as a result of all that tasty food and more, I had a chronic weight problem starting mildly at about age six; obviously the love for good food didn’t quite jibe with my raging fat genes. Two aunts and both their parents on my dad’s side were very obese and had hearty appetites, and the aunts loved to cook and have family gatherings. Well, yours truly was often an eager guest at those family food fests, then it would carry over to my home life since I and my mom liked to cook and eat, and she had developed a weight problem too, after having children.

Food was a main expression of love and thus a comforting “drug” in our rather lost and dysfunctional family, a drug with quite the destructive aspects. Thus the love-hate. I had a serious struggle (mostly on the losing end) with being very fat for much of my life, as did my younger brother. The family’s judgement and condemnation were further destructive…but they later came to regret the way they’d been, and were forgiven, at least by me.

Veganism at last came to my rescue, as well as that of all those animals I’d have downed…

Since going all the way and ending the dairy/egg cheating, and being strictly vegan starting in 2009, I got down to merely “chubby”—about the middle category in following illustration as opposed to the far leftI’d like to be the one just to the right of middle. But for the first time ever, I’m pretty comfortable with my weight and it’s been stable for years, no longer fluctuates hugely due to going from bingeing to starvation diets.

I’m no longer a target for mean, nasty, rude PsOS out there like I once was either. “Hey fatty!” and “Jenny Craig!” and other such sweet things would occasionally be hollered at me from nasty faces in cars rolling past, and other such sickening incidents. I’ve seen this happen to other people and always have to wonder what sort of creeps find it necessary to embarrass people like that. I’d rather be 200+ lbs than be that sort of creep.

Too late for a tangent alert? Well, here’s more…

Anyhow, I only love veganized versions of old favorites, no more hate. I’ve pretty much learned how to avoid the temptation to overeat, mainly by not having the more decadent foods regularly on hand at home, instead concentrating on healthier, non-fattening stuff. On top of that, I simply don’t have the huge appetite I once had, probably because what I do eat is mostly nutritious and satisfying…all plant foods. Where before I would remain hungry and keep on eating rich treats, more and more and more until sickly full, badly bloated, sluggish, and guilty about gaining ever more weight.

There was no “shutoff” on the appetite except for no more room for any more food. It wasn’t pretty, a miserable cycle of self destruction. But good tasting. First-World problems, I know, but no less real.

Casein, the mild opiate and appetite stimulant—for infants.

I believe dairy foods’ casein is behind much of the obesity out there and is only one more reason to quit dairy products, aside from the horrible animal cruelty involved, which should be the primary motivator.

My eating and weight problems were partly hormonal, since after “the change of life” my food & weight problems lessened significantly, as opposed to most women (mostly non-vegans) who have the opposite going on. But I do believe a big part of my lifelong problem was the casein in dairy products and its appetite stimulating and slight opiate effects. Cheese, sweet yogurt, ice cream, etc., were always a big part of bingeing. (I say “bingeing,” but I’ve always been a slow eater, so my “binges” weren’t the fast & furious things most bingers are known for.)

On a side note, meats are said to be nutritionally dense and satisfying (by advertisers and the well-programmed public), but I always found meats to be a catalyst for gorging on decadent desserts and things afterwards, aside from lots of other refined carbs like white biscuits and such that accompanied meaty meals. All in all, a high-calorie, obesity causing nightmare, for those many of us with “bad” genes.

So there’s my thing with tasty food, I love the stuff. Who wouldn’t?

But these twelve, in random order, are extra special because they’re compassionate versions of nostalgic childhood treats. These are all homemade, mostly from scratch, so are for those of us with time and patience to make some complicated recipes. But these all seem guaranteed to be worth the fuss. Just click on the links for full recipes and if you make them, enjoy!

1) 🍝 http://www.pastabased.com/spaghetti-and-meatballs/

Vegan Spaghetti & Meatballs by Pasta Based

2) http://blacksgoingvegan.com/crispy-spicy-popeyes-chicken-style-vegan-fried-chicken/

Vegan Fried Chicken by Blacks Going Vegan

3) http://namelymarly.com/vegan-drumsticks/

Vegan Drumsticks by Namely Marly

4) 🍝 http://ahouseinthehills.com/2014/12/04/chickpea-minestrone/

Chickpea Minestrone Soup by A House in the Hills

5) http://namelymarly.com/vegan-big-mac/

Vegan Big Mac by Namely Marly

6) http://www.theflamingvegan.com/view-post/Easy-Vegan-Black-Bean-Tamales

Easy Black Bean Tamales by The Flaming Vegan

7) http://www.forkandbeans.com/2015/01/15/vegan-chickpea-omelet/

Vegan Chickpea Omelet by Fork and Beans

8) https://itdoesnttastelikechicken.com/the-ultimate-vegan-chocolate-cake/

The Ultimate Vegan Chocolate Cake by It Doesn’t Taste Like Chicken

9) 🍝 http://namelymarly.com/vegan-new-york-style-cheesecake/

Vegan New York Cheese Cake by Namely Marly

10) 🍝 https://www.exceedinglyvegan.com/vegan-recipes/mains/vegan-pizza-cashew-cheese

Pizza with Cashew Cheese by Exceedingly Vegan

11) http://namelymarly.com/vegan-lemon-meringue-pie/

Lemon Meringue Pie by Namely Marly

12) http://veganyumminess.com/creamy-vegan-mac-and-cheese/

Vegan Mac and Cheese by Vegan Yumminess
Bogus arguments against veganism · Dealing with problem people · Food · Health · How to go vegan · Love · Low-carb diets · Raising vegan children · Soy foods · Uncategorized · Vegan cooking · Vegan diet

You Know What? Veggie Burgers are AWESOME!

WARNING! The following images are graphic, not suitable for those who aggressively abhor “fake meat,” who turn their noses up at fantastic sandwiches simply because they contain no abused, slaughtered animal products. Those who call veggie burgers “processed” as if they cannot still be real, healthy food. Those who imply that they religiously shun actual processed, unhealthy foods (hah!). Well, those people will lack the maturity to handle the truth about good food.

So keep out, you! Do not scroll, just go away!

In case it’s not clear yet: That means you persnickety clowns who say “ew” to veggie burgers or to anything “soy,” but not to ground-up dead carcasses, blood, gristle, poop (yes there’s poop in virtually all ground meat: http://www.motherjones.com/food/2015/08/poop-ground-beef-superbugs-antibiotic-resistant/). Then there are the bone chips, cow hair, tumors, etc., all processed into a nice reddish slush. All that makes “real burger” lovers drool and their little faces light up, in obedience to all those creepy commercials.

Well, much to their horror, in came tasty, filling, compassionate burgers…

Most burgers are made delicious by the spices, condiments and veggie garnishes, so why not a patty made with beans, seeds, nuts, soy, grains, mushrooms and so on? With veggie burgers we have the added greatness of kindness, as well as their being delicious and healthy (more so than blood burgers anyways).

I enjoy the occasional fantastic veggie burger, sometimes even on sprouted whole-grain buns (no flour), imagine that…oh, the horror. A personal favorite is just about any good brand of vegan burger, grilled and topped with coleslaw (made with vegan mayo) and tomato & pickle slices on a sprouted-grain bun. A bit of hummus or melted vegan cheese makes it even richer and tastier.

Following are ten scrumptious looking veggie burgers that should silence all the nasty hype against the veganizing of popular foods…but of course slaughter lovers will keep on carping. So just ignore them, go and make you some great burgers, and enjoy…

1) 

Cheeze Stuffed Bella Burgers with Figs, Rocket, and Herbed Vegenaise | by Vegan Feast

2) 

Burger Made with Quinoa & Carrots, etc.

3) 

Vegan Fourth of July Feast! by Troy Tolley on flickr

4) 

Black Bean Burger with Home Fries

5) 

Vegan Burger by Shpernik088

6) 

Beyond Meat’s Vegan Cheeseburger

7) 

Sunshine Burger’s Quarter Pound Original

8) 

Hilary’s Eat Well Burger at Native Foods Cafe

9) 

Veggie Burger with Sweet Potato Fries at Lodge NYC

10) 

Lentil Burgers – Great even all by themselves.

Then there’s this guy 🙂

Veggie Burger Speed Eating Contest