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Archive for the ‘misc’ Category

Nutrition and Supplementation for Vegetarians

Sunday, March 8th, 2015

During the first half of 2009, the Vegan Done Light newsletter ran what turned out to be its most controversial series, a hard-hitting, no-holds-barred, analysis of the research on vegetarian nutrition and supplements.

I’d asked Michael Rae, once a vitamin industry insider, a long-time vegetarian (then, perhaps still?), and now VP of Research for the Calorie Restriction Society, whether he’d be willing to guest author an article for VDL.

As an avid life extensionist, he’d been dishing out such information in drips and drabs for years through his writings at his previous employ and via the CR Society’s mail groups, so he was a natural and logical choice. My challenge to him was to put it all down in one place. He agreed to take up the gauntlet and proposed a three-part split.

I don’t think either of us expected it to wind up being so time-consuming and comprehensive. In the end, with a missed deadline and an extra segment thrown in for good measure, a full five months of dedication had gone into it!

To be fair about the “controversy,” those issues received just as many — actually, MORE — complimentary email responses than angry ones. The thing is Michael brought no biases to the table nor axes to grind, so he spoke objectively and candidly to the findings, and that apparently didn’t sit well with everyone.

He covered topics such as…

  • How to analyse your diet for imbalances
  • The best food sources of Iron, Calcium, B12, and many more
  • The one nutrient he asserts you must take in supplement form
  • The full story on Omega- fatty acids
  • A slew of “conditionally essential” nutrients

All fully referenced for your further study and debate fodder. It really was a great series of which we were both very proud, he for writing it and me for publishing it exclusively in the newsletter. Good news…

He recently contacted me to ask if he could reprint it, and I happily obliged. You can now read that classic from the Vegan Done Light archives for free on the Calorie Restriction Society forums (no registration required):

Nutrition and Supplementation for Veg(etari)ans

For more from Michael Rae, check out his book Ending Aging: The Rejuvenation Breakthrough That Could Reverse Human Aging in Our Lifetime, co-authored with Aubrey De Grey, Ph.D., shortly before the above.

Note: If you use the book link above, I get a small cut of the sale (at no extra cost to you). Thank you.

Vegan Cook

Wednesday, July 10th, 2013

It’s been a little while since I posted. The last entry being the touching video of a young child’s appreciation of all life and his discovery through a series of cogent inquiries that his meal was once a living animal. If you haven’t watched it yet, do check it out.

So, what have I been up to in the interim you may ask? Well, a couple things have gotten in the way of blogging in the last month, one a nuisance, the other a rather positive development.

First the drudgery: My hosting company alerted me to some resource usage issues, primarily related to database queries and traffic. You may have noticed some actual down time as they forced my sites offline. After much, and continued efforts, I’ve managed to significantly improve the situation and remain with the same hosting company for now. One of the things that helped was to add a caching plugin here and elsewhere. You may notice faster load times as a result, but if you also happen to notice anything amiss, please let me know.

Now, on to the good news…

Starting in mid-May, I joined the Susty’s vegan cafe team as a part-time cook! It’s been an amazing experience and a nice change of pace from my usual position in front of the computer. Of course, I still do freelance web development, but now get to supplement that with a far more reliable means of income generation as well as mobility and social interaction. Those first few weeks, my feet definitely let me know how much sitting I’d been doing!

While an inveterate home cook and recipe creator, I’d never worked in a commercial kitchen before. There’s a lot to learn. Everything from the opening and closing routines (turning everything on or off, mopping, putting out or taking down the open sign and flag, etc) to the dishes themselves (ingredients, portion control, and plating) to what to start cooking when to multi-task several orders at once to get things out at the right times.

It can get a bit hectic at times, but everyone is always having fun together and we’re serving wholesome vegan food, so it’s all good. Indeed, the owner, Norma, takes great care to ensure she buys only organic and, when in season, locally. Produce often comes from her own garden or those of local farmers. We even have organic black beans grown and hand-shelled just a mile or so down the road. And, everything, including seitan and the soymilk in the baked goods, is made from scratch.

There aren’t really any videos of Susty’s on YouTube, but I did dig up this excerpt (5:33-7:23) from a longer video of a couple folks waiting for their meal at Susty’s circa 2010. It gives you a small feel of the decor and music. They even catch a bit of the farmer’s market tents across the street (Thursday afternoons during the season).

I also found this vid of one of Norma’s beautiful daughters, Willow…

From the description:

Uploaded on Aug 22, 2011 – Willow explains how and why she and her restaurant, Susty’s on route 4 in Northwood, NH opposes nuclear power, supports alternative energies, and coordinated the food for this “Picnic for Peace” commemorating the first protesters arrested in 1976

Till next time, “Bring it on down to Veganville.” :)

Feed A Cold, Starve A Fever

Friday, June 22nd, 2012

So sayeth the old wive’s tale. But what happens if you have both at the same time? That’s the boat I recently found myself in this week, and I ended up doing a little of both since I was able to keep food down, but didn’t always feel like making or eating anything.

It’s been ages since I’ve had a cold, I forgot how not fun they are — And one in the summer? That’s even worse. I make up for it though with migraines, which have a tendency to ruin my weekend at least once a month. (The best thing I’ve found for keeping those to a minimum, by the way, is good ‘ole feverfew. It reduces their frequency and severity, so long as you take it regularly.)

Anyway, I digress. First, let me say, this isn’t a pity party. Actually, I’m pretty happy with how my body managed, fever and all, and just wanted to share a few of the things that worked for me in case it can help others.

Things started out with a sore throat, so off I went to the grocery store to get some as-natural-as-possible menthol drops. They only helped a little.

While I was there I also looked around for a green drink that would keep me nourished without having to do so much as even blend stuff up. What I found is something I’m definitely going to keep in mind.

I used to drink these little bottled smoothie concoctions when I was rushing from work to a poker game, so I remember them being tasty, but it’s been years since they’ve seen my shopping cart.

The one that seemed most jam-packed with goodness was a big bottle (52 oz) of Bolthouse Farms Green Goodness Fruit Smoothie. The consistency being smooth and thick, it was soothing to my sore then later just dry and irritated throat, and it felt like I was getting some good nutrition. Here’s what’s in it:

pineapple juice from concentrate, apple juice from concentrate, mango puree from concentrate, banana puree, kiwi juice, spirulina, natural flavor, chlorella, zinc monohydrate, green tea, spinach, broccoli, ascorbic acid, barley grass, wheat grass, echinacea, garlic, blue green algae, jerusalem artichoke, lemon bioflavonoids, novia scotia dulce

My “prescription”: 8 oz in the morning, 8 oz in the early evening.

A few days in I noticed that fever I mentioned. 100.6°F (“low-grade”) with chills. Rather than taking some medication to reduce it, I tend to agree with Dr. Schulze that it’s there for a reason, i.e., to knock out those bad guys, so I just watched it to make sure it didn’t get into the “high-grade” range (103+) and drank plenty of fluids.

One of the homemade remedies that really helped was warm water with a bit of lemon juice, liquid sweetener of your choosing, and a touch of cayenne pepper. As for food, I kept it real simple with oatmeal, bananas, soy milk, berries, and raisins. Oh, and supplement-wise, extra Vitamin C.

The final ingredients to recovery, rest (could have done better here) and exercise — save for a single skipped day (probably should have been two), I still walked on the treadmill.

I’m feeling much better now. Still traces of symptoms left, but nothing like the incessant sneezing, coughing, runny nose, sinus pain, etc., from earlier in the week.

The human body is an amazing thing, at once so fragile and yet so resilient; just give it the right things to work with and nothing more and don’t fight its defenses, and it’ll take care of the rest.

Back In The Box

Saturday, October 15th, 2011

Not much commentary needed in presenting this video. I came upon it while watching one of the many Occupy {fill in the blank} livestreams and sought it out. ‘Tis a powerful reminder of the Buddhist concept of impermanence, or anicca, and what is truly important in our sojourn (brief stay) upon this planet.

The speaker is best-selling Christian author and pastor, John Ortberg, whose works include, of course, When The Game Is Over, It All Goes Back In The Box and The Me I Want To Be, which also comes in a Teen Edition.

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