Vegan Q&A

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Here are my answers to questions from Clarah G. who is interested in being vegan, has tried being vegan, and has been mostly vegetarian for two years. I hope you enjoy. -MM

CG: When did you become a vegan? Why did you make the switch?

MM: I was born in 1958; have loved fruits and starches as far back as I can remember; met a cow and chicken as a child and began to avoid them on my plate preferring fruits, veggies, and starches; quit bacon in 1972 due to migraines (nitrates); was vegetarian for about a year in 1978 and again in Feb 1990 for health, earth, budget, and animals; went plant-based August 8, 1990 for health; went vegan (lifestyle) October 1990 for animals; raw-vegan in 1999 for health; 80/10/10 HCLF vegan in 2010 for health; and rawtill4-vegan in December 2012 for warmth and socializing in addition to the previous stated reasons.

CG: What has being a vegan done for you?

MM: Being vegan helped reverse my symptoms of allergies, migraines, endometriosis, hypoglycemia (pre-diabetes), breast calcification (pre-cancer), astigmatism, myopia, PTSD, hyper-lipidemia (pre-heart-disease), etc.

CG: Are there any negative effects of veganism that you weren’t aware of before adopting the diet and lifestyle?

MM: There are so many positive effects to being vegan and now veganism is becoming socially mainstream with plant-based options available in many large chains like Chipotle’s sofritas bowl, Dunkin Donuts Beyond Sausage (extra on side), Burger King Impossible Whopper (without mayo), UNO Beyond Burger and Garden Vegan Pizza, Subway plant-based meat ball sub (soon), Taco Bell, etc. and we even have a 2020 vegan presidential candidate, Cory Booker. Maybe just find an Italian, Mexican, or Asian place that has vegan options like pasta marinara, veggie burrito, or veg stir fry? Also bring your own avocado. That’s the old school way to be vegan. :)

CG: Are you vegan in all aspects of life (clothing, companies, etc.) or just in food consumption?

MM: As a vegan I try to cause the least harm to animals, earth, and humans in my choices of food, clothing, entertainment, products (vivisection),  digital-camera (film), etc. I’m not “perfect” – for example I do not wear leather, wool, or silk but still own some dance shoes and ice skates that I’ve had since before going vegan and I think there are animal by-products in glue in walls and in rubber in car tires; but at least I have a Smart ForTwo car which gets 40 miles per gallon, I stay home a lot, and I believe that more alternatives to animal byproducts will be developed as animal factory farming deceases. (Btw, the second part of your question describes a plant-based eater which is also good for earth, health, budget, and animals.)

CG: What has been the most difficult part of veganism for you, if there are any?

MM: Being vegan is super awesome and finding vegan friends is easy on Meetup and social media and Plenty of Fish even has a vegan category that can be searched on.

CG: Have your expenses increased since becoming a vegan?

MM: I have saved lots of money on food, healthcare, heating, hot water, cleaning products, clothing, etc. – high-carb-low-fat vegan food is so clean it even keeps kitchen and dishes much cleaner.

CG: For people who would like to be vegan but don’t have the resources, what advice would you give about living a similar lifestyle?

MM: Eating simple whole plant-based foods including bananas, raisins, oats, rice, legumes, potatoes, and greens saved me money on groceries and health care. The approximate price per pound for bananas is $.50, oats $1, rice $1, and dried lentils $1. Also there free wild edible plant-foods, food pantries, soup kitchens, and food stamps.

CG: Have you heard that people could stop climate change in 50 years or so if everyone became a vegan or vegetarian? What are your thoughts on this?

MM: I think in a hypothetical scenario in addition to renewable energy progress if one fifth of people went vegan each year over a period of five years the climate crisis would stop because factory farmed animals are slaughtered by age five. Right now there are more factory farm animals on earth than people, methane is worse than carbon, and plants sequester carbon in the soil and produce oxygen. Even if most people cut back on eating animal flesh, it would make a big difference for climate. Also, clean meat (aka lab meat, cloned meat, cultured meat) has a small carbon footprint and will be available soon and the price will come down as demand rises with 80% of people being environment and health conscious.

CG: Due to an interest in fresh and nutrient-rich food, imports and exports have increased– specifically in high protein crops like avocados and quinoa– this is worse for the environment. Do you think the benefits of being a vegan outweigh the negative environmental aspects?

MM: I read that vegan food has much lower carbon footprint than animal flesh. It takes about 17 pounds of feed grain or legumes and about 1,800 gallons of water to make one pound of beef. Much animal feed is grown in Africa and South America and transported to USA factory farms and then slaughtered animal flesh is transported all over and flesh requires refrigeration energy while grains and legumes and dried fruits and seeds do not and dry weight is much less so costs less to transport. The pounds of Carbon Dioxide equivalent (CO2e) per serving of beef is 6.61, cheese 2.45, pork 1.72, poultry 1.26, eggs 0.89, milk 0.72, rice 0.16, legumes 0.11, carrots 0.07, and potatoes 0.03. CO2e per Serving

(Source: http://css.umich.edu/factsheets/carbon-footprint-factsheet)

By the way, avocados are 19% carbs, 4% protein, and 77% fat.

Humans only need <10% of calories from protein – for example babies double their birth weight in six months on only breast-milk which is <10% protein. Also strong apes eat mostly fruit and strong horses eat grains. We can get our protein where they do. As long as we eat enough calories (approximately 2,000 calories per day for women and 3,000 calories per day for men) we get enough protein. Carbs are quickly used as fuel or stored as glycogen in muscles to be used the next day, proteins are generally used as enzymes and muscle, and fats are used primarily in the brain and nervous system and excess are stored as fat.

My Macro-Nutrient Ratio is >80% Carbohydrates : <10% Protein : <10% Fat

MacroRatios

Thank you for the opportunity to answer some questions to the best of my ability at this time. I will try to update if I learn more.

2019/11/14 ©MaraMore

Fresh Greens

How to keep salad greens fresh longer outside of refrigerator, save on electricity bill, and cut down carbon footprint all at the same time:
1. Cut thin slice off bottom of head of celery, lettuce, etc.
2. Find a dish the right size to hold greens upright.
3. Place greens upright in dish.
4. Add water to cover the bottom by about 1″.
5. Check water level and recut new sliver if needed.

I think of greens as like fresh cut flowers and treat them the same way.

Btw, I eat fruit, veggies, nuts/seeds, grains and legumes that all do not require refrigeration so I only use a small dorm style refrigerator. This is one of the many ways I stay healthy, save money, and lower my carbon footprint.

Here are photos of fresh Boston lettuce.

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2020 Poll & CO2e per food

CO2e per Serving

When asked in a survey from Senator Cory Booker, “What issues are most important to you when picking a 2020 political candidate?”; I chose, “Climate Change”, and also wrote in the little box under “Other”,

“Vegan food choices, clean renewable energy (solar, wind), orchards, gardens and composting at all schools, military bases, public lands, prisons, hospitals, etc to stop climate change, feed needy, lead by example, and teach how food impacts climate footprint. Also grow hemp for oil, seeds, textiles, $. And end war.”

https://act.corybooker.com/page/s/supporter-survey

(https://vegnews.com/2019/2/cory-booker-on-animal-rights-veganism-and-how-to-change-the-world)

I replied to Senator Elizabeth Warren’s survey, “Go vegan for climate, health, economy, sustainability, hunger, peace, animals.”

https://my.elizabethwarren.com/page/s/ew-issuessurvey

Please sign petition to the president:
Plant-based USA
Please share. Thank you.

*Photo credit: http://css.umich.edu/factsheets/carbon-footprint-factsheet

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Animal Agribiz Climate Change

Please sign petitions to SOS John Kerry to add animal agribusiness to climate-change talks:
http://petitions.moveon.org/sign/include-animal-agribusiness
and to world leaders to Reduce Animal-Agribusiness. https://campaigns.350.org/petitions/reduce-animal-agribusiness

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COWSPIRACY

COWSPIRACY: The Sustainability Secret, Haverhill Public Library, Jan 26, 2016, 7pm. https://www.facebook.com/events/906632499433136/

COWSPIRACY: The Sustainability Secret is a groundbreaking feature-length environmental documentary following an intrepid filmmaker as he uncovers the most destructive industry facing the planet today – and investigates why the world’s leading environmental organizations are too afraid to talk about it. As eye-opening as Blackfish and as inspiring as An Inconvenient Truth, this shocking yet humorous documentary reveals the absolutely devastating environmental impact large-scale factory farming has on our planet.

The Sustainability Secret: Rethinking Our Diet to Transform the World by Keegan Kuhn and Kip Andersen The groundbreaking 2014 documentary Cowspiracy presents shocking truths about the effects of industrial animal agriculture on the planet. The leading cause of deforestation, rainforest destruction, greenhouse gas production, water consumption and pollution, habitat loss, species extinction, ocean dead-zones, topsoil erosion, and a host of other environmental ills, animal agriculture is the biggest issue facing the planet today and one of the most controversial environmental secrets in the world of conservation. Filled with anecdotes, statistics, research, interviews with the filmmakers and contributors, and unabridged transcripts from the film, this companion book supplements and expands upon the documentary in every way. With all this and more, The Sustainability Secret reveals the absolutely devastating environmental impact large-scale factory farming has on our planet and offers a path to global sustainability for a growing population.

Climate Change

Factory-farm animal-agriculture causes 51% of climate-change pollution, 55% USA water use, 91% Amazon rain-forest destruction, and is the leading cause of species extinction, ocean dead zones, water pollution, and habitat destruction; but the good news is fruit, plant-based (vegan), and cultured-meat are sustainable and humane solutions. A plant-based (vegan) diet includes fruits, greens, vegetables, nuts, seeds, grains, and legumes. “On the one acre of land needed to produce 250 pounds of beef, we could grow 50,000 pounds of tomatoes, 53,000 pounds of potatoes or 30,000 pounds of carrots. Producing protein from chickens requires three times as much land as protein from soybeans. Pork needs nine times, beef 32 times. The average person who eats plant-based can save 162,486 gallons of water a year, and cut their carbon footprint in half. But the icing on the plant-based cake is the fact we could redirect enough grain from the livestock system to feed 1.4 billion people if every American stopped eating meat. The average diet containing animal products requires around 4,000 gallons of water a day, whereas a vegan diet uses approximately 300 gallons of water a day. To produce 1 kilogram of rice requires about 3,500 liters of water, whereas 1 kilogram of beef requires a staggering 15,000 liters. Factory farms in the US generate 13 times as much sewage as the human population does. Cultured-meat compared to animal-agriculture uses 1% of land, produces only 4% of climate change pollution, uses 55% of energy, and 0% farm-animal suffering” because there will be banks of saved stem cells from one living cow, pig, chicken. Demand and a shift in government subsidies will bring down the price of cultured-meat and technology will even allow people to grow their own cultured-meat from stem cells at home. Even better, highly affordable and nutritious plant-based (vegan) diets are enjoyed by many healthy happy people and have been available since humans have been on planet earth. (See info-graphics and links below for more information.)

vegan


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811The 80/10/10 Diet: Balancing Your Health, Your Weight, and Your Life One Luscious Bite at a Time by Dr. Douglas Graham. If you have struggled with maintaining your natural weight and wellness or would like to change your life for the better, look no further than this groundbreaking book. Dr. Douglas Graham gives “voice to what has proven to be the healthiest choice in the world of food and nutrition” and says, “I believe it is time that we all started loving ourselves a lot more … by nourishing our bodies with foods that love us back.” He addresses heart-disease, cancer, diabetes, obesity, adrenal fatigue, candida, depression, pain, and more with a simple formula macro-nutrient ratio of 80% minimum carbohydrates, 10% maximum protein, and 10% maximum fat.

Proteinaholic: How Our Obsession with Meat Is Killing Us and What We Can Do About It Dr. Garth Davis says too much protein is actually making us sick, fat, and tired. If you are getting adequate calories in your diet, there is no such thing as protein deficiency. The healthiest countries in the world eat far less protein than we do and yet we have an entire nation on a protein binge getting sicker by the day. Combining cutting-edge research, with his hands-on patient experience and his years dedicated to analyzing studies of the world’s longest-lived populations; this explosive, groundbreaking book reveals the truth about the dangers of protein and shares a proven approach to weight loss, health, and longevity.

The Starch Solution: Eat the Foods You Love, Regain Your Health, and Lose the Weight for Good! by John McDougall, M.D. and Mary McDougall is a bestselling author’s groundbreaking eating plan that challenges the notion that starch is unhealthy. From Atkins to Dukan, the fear-mongering about carbs over the past few decades has reached a fever pitch; the mere mention of a starch-heavy food is enough to trigger a cavalcade of shame and longing. In The Starch Solution, bestselling diet doctor and board-certified internist John A. McDougall, MD, and his kitchen-savvy wife, Mary, turn the notion that starch is bad for you on its head. The Starch Solution is based on a simple swap: fueling your body primarily with carbohydrates rather than proteins and fats. This will help you lose weight and prevent a variety of ills. Fad diets come and go, but Dr. McDougall has been a proponent of the plant-based diet for decades, and his medical credibility is unassailable. He is one of the mainstay experts cited in the bestselling and now seminal China Study—called the “Grand Prix of epidemiology” by the New York Times. But what The China Study lacks is a plan. Dr. McDougall grounds The Starch Solution in rigorous scientific fact and research, giving readers easy tools to implement these changes into their lifestyle with a 7-Day Quick Start Plan and 100 delicious recipes. This book includes testimonials from among the hundreds Dr. McDougall has received, including people who have lost more than 125 pounds in mere months as well as patients who have conquered life-threatening illnesses such as diabetes and cardiac ailments.

Edible Wild Plants: A North American Field Guide to Over 200 Natural Foods by Thomas Elias & Peter Dykeman. Already a huge success in previous editions, this must-have field guide now features a fresh new cover, as well as nearly 400 color photos and detailed information on more than 200 species of edible plants all across North America. With all the plants conveniently organized by season, enthusiasts will find it very simple to locate and identify their desired ingredients. Each entry includes images, plus facts on the plant’s habitat, physical properties, harvesting, preparation, and poisonous look-alikes. The introduction contains tempting recipes and there’s a quick-reference seasonal key for each plant.
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SunfoodThe Sunfood Diet Success System by David Wolfe describes how to adopt, maintain, and stay centered on an 80, 90, or 100% raw-food diet by balancing different types of foods through David Wolfe’s innovative Sunfood Triangle. Success is inevitable with day-by-day menu plans, delicious recipes, and the best information available on detoxification, fasting, mineralization and success technology all neatly bundled into one book. Each chapter is filled with inspiring quotes, facts, and tips. Dozens of beautiful, never-before-seen full-color images have been added to this brand-new edition, including many stunning Kirlian photographs. The Sunfood Diet Success System also includes a comprehensive listing of raw-food restaurants, healing retreats, and organizations. Be prepared for nothing less than total transformation!

Superfoods: The Food and Medicine of the Future by David Wolfe. Superfoods are vibrant, nutritionally dense foods that have recently become widely available and which offer tremendous dietary and healing potential. In this lively, illustrated overview, well-known raw-foods guru David Wolfe profiles delicious and incredibly nutritious plant products such as goji berries, hempseed, cacao beans (raw chocolate), maca, spirulina, bee products, and a host of others. As powerful sources of clean protein, vitamins, minerals, enzymes, antioxidants, good fats and oils, essential fatty and amino acids, and other nutrients, they represent a uniquely promising piece of the nutritional puzzle. Each superfood is described in detail, accompanied by easy and delicious recipes. This accessible guide presents persuasive arguments, based on sound science, for the pivotal role of superfoods in promoting nutritional excellence, health and well-being, beauty enhancement, sustainable agriculture, and the transformation of diet, lifestyle, and planet.

Diet For A New America by John Robbins, a new edition of the classic that awakened the conscience of a nation. Since the 1987 publication of Diet for a New America, beef consumption in the United States has fallen a remarkable 19%. While many forces are contributing to this dramatic shift in our habits, Diet for a New America is considered to be one of the most important. Diet for a New America is a startling examination of the food we currently buy and eat in the United States, and the astounding moral, economic, (health), and emotional price we pay for it. Diet for a New America is the single most eloquent argument for a vegetarian lifestyle ever published. Eloquently, evocatively, and entertainingly written, it is a cant put down book guaranteed to amaze, infuriate, but ultimately educate and empower the reader. A pivotal book nominated for the Pulitzer Prize for Non-Fiction in 1987.
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Diet for a Small Planet (20th Anniversary Edition) Frances Moore Lappe Here again is the extraordinary bestselling book that taught America the social and personal significance of a new way of eating– one that remains a complete guide for eating well in the 90s. Featuring: simple rules for a healthy diet; a streamlined, easy-to-use format; delicious food combinations of protein-rich meals without meat; hundreds of wonderful recipes, and much more. With the new emphasis on environmentalism in the 1990’s, Lappe stresses how her philosophy remains valid, and how food remains the central issue through which to understand world politics. If you are interested in health, you can use Lappe’s book to provide alternative main dishes that are satisfying and lower in fat, higher in fiber. Meat is a major source of saturated fats, beans and rice and other grains provide lots of benefits such as soluble and insoluble fiber, vitamins and minerals. If you are ecologically minded, and this is the thrust of the book, you can eat comfortably, knowing your dietary items take up less resources to grow. If you are an animal activist or don’t eat meat for religious reasons, Lappe provides valuable info on how to get the proper balance in your diet by matching foods to get all the essential amino acids you need (the building blocks of proteins.) I read this book in 1972. I haven’t seen the latest edition, but definitely recommend cow-milk alternatives that are readily available in grocery stores now and it’s easy to make your own nut/seed-milk.

http://cowspiracy.com

http://www.peta.org/features/meat-climate-change

http://ajcn.nutrition.org/content/78/3/660S.full

http://www.forksoverknives.com/

http://vegankit.com/eat

http://www.peta.org/features/vegan-diet-infographic/

http://www.pcrm.org/health/diets

http://www.whyculturedmeat.org

http://www.onegreenplanet.org/animalsandnature/eat-for-the-planet-meat-and-the-environment/

http://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2015/nov/19/population-crisis-farm-animals-laying-waste-to-planet

http://www.earthintransition.org/2011/11/cooking-up-real-meat-without-animals/

http://sitn.hms.harvard.edu/flash/2011/issue90/

http://blogs.scientificamerican.com/observations/cultured-beef-do-we-really-need-a-380000-burger-grown-in-petri-dishes/

http://zurcaledworld.blogspot.com/2013/09/the-future-of-food-worlds-first-test.html

http://www.keycompounding.com/meat-from-a-petri-dish/

http://www.dogonews.com/2013/8/8/why-a-bland-and-neutral-flavored-325-dollars-000-usd-burger-is-being-hailed-a-success/page/3

http://culturedmeat.blogspot.com/

http://pubs.acs.org/doi/abs/10.1021/es200130u

http://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2012/04/20/magazine/ethics-eating-meat.html?_r=0

http://tedx.tumblr.com/post/58160025369/thisistheverge-your-meat-addiction-is

http://www.new-harvest.org/timeline/

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2010-05-27/meatloaf-from-a-petri-dish-is-innovator-s-goal-for-the-carnivorous-masses

http://www.modernmeadow.com/

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/articles/2013-08-04/world-s-first-332-000-lab-grown-beef-burger-to-be-tasted

http://www.futurefood.org/vegetarian/index_en.php

http://en.futuremeat.org/index.php

http://humanemyth.org/

http://www.naturalnews.com/045552_plant-based_diet_save_the_world_sustainable_food.html