Archive for August, 2010

Veggies Can Feed the World

One of the most depressing things to me is waste. I’m a huge advocate of recycling, reusing, and leftovers. I don’t like seeing things wasted, ever. Although I am liberal in almost all parts of my life, I am very conservative with my money-which also aids me in my ability to never waste. I don’t like to see unused water go down the drain, food go uneaten, jars in the garbage, paper not being reused, etc. So of course it kills me that we are a country of completeexcess and waste. We have more than we could ever need or want, yet we want more, need more, and certainly waste a whole lot more. While we waste there are other places in our world that do not even have enough of what they need, and never see what they want. It depresses me all the time. Especially when I think of my parents who didn’t grow up in America, in particular my dad, who never owned a pair of shoes in his youth or tasted dessert. One of the reasons why I am a vegetarian is because I think its one step closer to solving world hunger. Yes, I am aware I myself am not changing the world, but I like to think that the more of us that become vegetarians, the more our country can start growing crops for the right reason, like feeding people. Jim Motavelli from The Environmental Magazine  has said, “The 4.8 pounds of grain fed to cattle to produce one pound of beef for human beings represents a colossal waste of resources in a world still teeming with people who suffer from profound hunger and malnutrition.” Now take a look at these horrific numbers that I found the other day from Diet for a New America, by John Robins.

• Human population of United States: 270,000,000 (and counting)

• Number of human beings who could be fed by the grain and soybeans eaten by U.S. livestock: 1,300,000,000

• Percentage of corn grown in United States eaten by human beings: 20%

• Percentage of corn grown in United States eaten by livestock: 80%

• How frequently a child dies of starvation: Every 2.3 seconds

• Pounds of potatoes that can be grown on 1 acre of land: 20,000

• Pounds of beef that can be produced on 1 acre of land: 165

• Percentage of U.S. agricultural land used to produce beef: 56

• Number of children who starve to death every day: 38,000

• Number of people who could be adequately fed if Americans reduced their intake of meat by 10%: 100,000,000

• Amount of meat eaten by average person in Costa Rica, El Salvador, Guatemala, Nicaragua, Honduras and Panama: Less than the average American house cat

• Water needed to produce 1 pound of wheat: 25 gallons

• Water needed to produce 1 pound of meat: 2,500

Seriously. These numbers depress me! We are stuffing our faces, overeating meat that will give us cancer and other health issues while there are others who do not have enough to eat at all.

Another thing I want to touch on is that I know a lot of people will read these numbers and go “Okay, I kind of see the connection. But there’s no proof that meat is really a reason why people are starving.” Well, I would consider that, since I’m open minded, but the facts are hard to ignore. Jeremy Rifkin, president of the Foundation on Economic Trends in Washington, DC, stated that during the Ethiopian famine in 1984, “While people starved, Ethiopia was growing linseed cake, cottonseed cake and rapeseed meal for European livestock. Millions of acres of land in the developing world are used for this purpose. Tragically, 80 percent of the world’s hungry children live in countries with food surpluses which are fed to animals for consumption by the affluent.”

And to see that everyone could eat if we all gave up meat, or at least consumed less of it, is sad because not enough people will give up meat. Why have we become so meat obsessed? Like Steve Spielberg has said “Humans are the only race that hunts when not hungry.” So wasteful, it makes me want to cry. Especially since we are doing something so greedy, so wasteful, so unhealthy and hurting animals in the process. And I am no animal person, and many people aren’t…however I don’t know too many people who would turn their backs on a hungry child. So why don’t we all do our part and reduce our meat intake and help feed the rest of the world? I’ve already talked about it over and over…going veggie for your health, for the animals, the environment…but if you don’t care about any of those, can you at least do it for the people out there who are going to go to bed hungry tonight?

Peace.

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Never knew I’d become a Preacher!

I never really set out to tell the world to become vegetarians or vegans. I never really thought I was an activist for anything, much less animal rights. However after becoming a vegetarian myself I started to really care. Deeply, passionately care about what I am putting into my body, and what is happening to our world from consuming meat. What started off as guilt for killing cows, has full blown into something else for me. Our meat problems do not end at animals. Meat is much worse of an issue than murder. Meat is poisoning the human race, causing the environment to disintegrate, preventing the world from overcoming world hunger, and killing other natural resources. I never knew that one day I would become a preacher. I also never thought one day I’d become a teacher. I guess this is where I’m headed on my path to enlightenment. 😉

First off for anyone who bitches about weight or wanting to shed some extra pounds, you will definitely stop yo-yoing once you cut out the animal fat. Once that is gone you don’t have to worry about fat as much. Of course it will still be your responsibility to care for your body and to watch your sugar consumption, but cutting meat will slim you down! Once I stopped buying meat, my husband really didn’t have a choice in the matter, so he gradually stopped eating meat as well. And everyone has noticed that he’s lost weight! He didn’t even mean to, but because he’s not consuming all that extra animal fat, he has naturally leaned out. It’s also a great way to detox your body and let the engine start fresh! Also not having the meat sitting in your body makes you even feel lighter, cleaner, and less sluggish. According to the American Dietetic Association, vegetarians are also less likely to develop heart disease, cancer, diabetes, or high blood pressure than meat-eaters. Vegetarians get all the nutrients they need to be healthy (from plant protein, fiber, minerals, etc.) without all the nasty stuff in meat that slows you down and makes you sick, like cholesterol and saturated animal fat.

Being a vegetarian is also the best way we can help animals without being in the industry ourselves. By not eating animals, we are not stopping this business, or stopping the slaughtering but we are a voice that will speak loud and clear to the companies when their customers no longer want to consume their products. “Every vegetarian saves more than 100 animals a year from abuse.” (goveg.com 09)

Plus, I’ve talked about it before, meat is nasty! Meat is often contaminated with feces, blood, and other bodily fluids, all of which make animal products the top source of food poisoning in the US. Scientists at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health tested supermarket chicken flesh and found that 96 percent of Tyson chicken was contaminated with campylobacter- a dangerous bacteria that causes 2.4 million cases of food poisoning each year!

And what’s sad is that we’re all happily eating meat and getting food poisoning when other people in the world are starving and don’t even have enough grains to eat, much less meat! “It takes tons of crops and water to raise farmed animals-in fact, it takes up to 16 pounds of grain to produce just 1 pound of animal flesh! All that plant food could be used much more efficiently if it was fed to people directly. The more people who go vegetarian, the more we can feed the hungry.”

Okay, so I’ve already talked about how bad it is for us and the animals. Now what a lot of people don’t know…it’s bad for our Earth! Eating meat is one of the worst things that you can do for the Earth; it’s wasteful, it causes enormous amounts of pollution, and the meat industry is one of the biggest causes of global warming.

Just think about it! Have a good weekend! =)

PSMF; Day 10

Alas! Finally there is some improvement. My giants have deflated, my scars are starting to fade, and new breakouts are far, far less frequent! Hallelujah! What can I really contribute to this success? Well, I tried to eat more leafy vegetables and salads, I washed my face 2x a day (morning with Clearisal face wash, nighttime with Clearasil Nighttime Wash) and applied benzoyl peroxide nightly (Clean & Clear 10%). I totally ditched the Tea Tree Oil. Too stinky and ineffective. I still have a long ways to go though…need to up those veggies, down the water and cross my fingers that working from the inside out will help improve my skin even further! (I still look like crap, but hey, not breaking out is a good start!)

Where do we eat?! Where DON’T we eat!?

One of the top reasons/complaints/questions I get pertain to where and what I get to eat. “Well doesn’t it suck, like not being able to go to restaurants?”  Why can’t I go to restaurants? Silly people! There are so, so many places in

Azia, we almost had our wedding reception here!

the Twin Cities where I can get vegetarian meals it’s remarkable! Below, I have an extensive list of places that are either all veg, all vegan, or are vegan/vegetarian friendly! The crazy thing? This isn’t even all of them…there are hundreds more from where this list came from! Do a little digging on the internet and you are bound to find more! Happy Hunting!
Vegetarian Options
128 Cafe, St. Paul
Adelita’s (Mexican), Mpls
Amici Pizza & Bistro, Mpls
Azuki’s Sushi, Stadium Village Mpls
Bagu Sushi, Mpls
The Barbary Fig (Moroccan), St. Paul
Barbette (French), Mpls
Barley John’s, New Brighton
The Bean Factory, St. Paul
Bob’s Java Hut (soup, sandwiches, salads), Mpls
Bombay Bistro (Indian), Mpls
Bravo! Cafe and Bakery, St. Paul
Bryn Mawr Pizza and Deli, Mpls
Burger King (I’m serious, they have a Veggie burger!), all over
Chatterbox Pub, Mpls and St. Paul
*Chili’s, all over
*Chino Latino, Mpls
Christo’s (Greek), Mpls and St. Paul
*Davanni’s, all over
Delicious Cafe and Brazilian Grill, Minnetonka
*Dino’s Gyros (Greek), Roseville
Dulono’s Pizza, Mpls
Fuji-Ya (Japanese), St. Paul
*Green Mill, all over
Hard Times Cafe, Mpls
II Gatto (Italian), Mpls
*Jimmy John’s, all over
*Mt. Fuji, Mpls and Maple Grove
*Olive Garden, all over
*Panco Villa (Mexican), Mpls
*Romano’s Macaroni Grill, Rosedale Mall
Solera (Tapas Bar), Mpls
Vegan & Vegetarian Options
5 Spice Asian Take-out, Blaine
501 Club, Mpls
Acadia Cafe, Mpls
Amazing Thailand, Mpls
Anodyne, Mpls (Cafe)
*Asia’s Finest Restaurant, Vadnais Heights
Asian Express, St. Paul Skyway
*Azia, Mpls
Back Door Deli, Vadnais Heights
The Bad Waitress, Mpls
*Baja Sol, all over
*Bambu (Vietnamese and Chinese), Maplewood
Ban Thai Restaurant, White Bear Lake
Bangkok Thai Deli, St. Paul
Bar Abilene (Mexican), Mpls
BD’s Mongolian BBQ, Burnsville
Beirut Restaurant (Lebanese), St. Paul
Best of India, St. Louis Park
*Big Bowl, all over
Birchwood Cafe, Mpls
Black Dog Coffee and Wine Bar, St. Paul
Black Sea Restaurant (Turkish), St. Paul
Black Sheep Coal Fired Pizza, Mpls
Blue Moon Coffee Cafe, Mpls
Blue Nile (Ethiopian), Mpls
*Bona Vietnamese Restaurant, Mpls
Bordertown Cafe, UofM Campus
Breadsmith, all over
Broder’s Cucina Italiana, Mpls
*Bruegger’s Bagels, all over
Bryant Lake Bowl, (bowling alley with vegan options-weird but cool), Mpls
*Buca di Beppo (Italian), Maple Grove and Mpls
*Burrito Loco, Dinkytown
Cafe Latte, St. Paul
*California Pizza Kitchen, all over
Caspian Bistro (Iranian), Mpls
Cheng Heng (Cambodian), St. Paul
Chiang Mai Thai, Mpls
Chin’s Asia Fresh, Minnetonka
*Chipotle, all over
Cosmos, Mpls
Crave (Italian), Edina
Cupcake, Mpls
*Dunn Brothers, all over
*Ecopolitan, Mpls
Eden Pizza, St. Paul
*Einstien Bros. Bagels, all over
*Erbert and gerbert’s, all over
Everest on Grand (Nepalese and Tibetan), St. Paul
Falafel King (Middle Eastern), all over
French Meadow Bakery and Cafe, Mpls
Galactic Pizza, Mpls
*Good Earth, Roseville and Edina
*Gopher Express, UofM Campus
Grand Szechuan, Bloomington
*Grumpy’s, Roseville and Mpls
*The Independent, Mpls
It’s Greek to Me, Mpls
Izzy’s Ice Cream Cafe, St. Paul
*Jamba Juice, all over
*Jasmine 26, Mpls
*Jasmine Deli, Mpls
Johnny Rockets (60’s drive thru), Bloomington
*Khan’s Mongolian BBQ, Roseville and Richfield
King and I Thai, Mpls
Little Tijuana (Punk Rock Mexican? Whatever that means. Lol, that’s what their site actually says), Mpls
*The Local (Irish bar), Mpls
*Lucky Dragon, Mpls
moto-i (Japanese), Mpls
*Muddy Paws Cheesecake, St. Louis Park
*Napa Valley Grille, MOA
*Noodles and Company, all over
OM (Upscale Indian), Mpls
*P.F Chang’s, all over
*Panera, all over
*Pei Wei (Fast food Pan-Asian), all over
Pineda Tacos, all over
*Pizza Luce, Mpls (3 locations) and St. Paul
*Psycho Suzi’s Motor Lounge (Bar food), Mpls
*Rainbow Chinese Restaurant and Bar, Mpls
*Sawatdee (Thai), Mpls, Maple Grove, St. Paul
*Shuang Cheng (Chinese), Dinkytown (My favorite restaurant of all time!)
Triple Rock Social Club (Punk Bar-serves breakfast-I need to go here!), Mpls
Tucci Benucch (Italian), MOA
Turtle Bread Company, Mpls (2 locations)
*Village Wok, UofM Campus-open hella late, like till 2am!
Vincent A Restaurant (French), Mpls
W.A Frost and Company, St. Paul

*Places I’ve ate vegetarian meals at, so feel free to ask me questions!

Pictures (Click to enlarge.)

Barbette.

Blue Nile.

Everest on Grand.

Fuji-Ya.

The Good Earth.

Izzy’s Ice Cream Cafe- Vegan ice cream? So cool!

Cafe Latte.

Christo’s.

OM.

Solera.

At the very least, please give up Tyson!

I know I preach a lot but I’ve been reading a lot lately about the conditions at Tyson and KFC and had to share the disgusting facts I’ve been finding out. I wish I had blogged about this earlier, and wish I had known years earlier about it. In all reality, I don’t care if you give up meat or not. There are organic meats out there, and farmers doing their part in making our world better but I do deeply, honestly care if you get chicken at KFC or buy Tyson brand. Please, for the love of everything humane do not contribute to the slaughter that goes into getting your bucket ‘o chicken at KFC. Being someone who used to eat there as well, I know that it tastes good. I know, but it’s not worth it. And not just for the animal’s sake, but yours as well. Tyson and KFC are nasty. Nasty to the chickens and nasty to you.

PETA conducted an undercover investigation in 2004-2007 at a Heflin, Alabama, Tyson slaughterhouse and on nine separate days (all in 2007), investigators saw workers urinating in the live-hang area, including on the conveyor belt that moves birds to slaughter. WTF. If this isn’t enough for you to stop eating at KFC then I am just shocked. Now onto what I think is even worse: The chickens abuse. Here are only some of the incidents happening to the meat you are serving to your kids at dinner time. 😥

At Tyson slaughterhouses in Georgia and Tennessee investigators found that “Birds died when their heads and legs became trapped under a door at the end of the conveyor belt that transported live birds to be hung. A supervisor was aware of this problem but did nothing to stop it.” Also “The killing-machine blade often cut birds’ bodies instead of their throats. Although aware of this problem, a supervisor offered no solution, instead blaming the problem on the “nature of the machine.”

“During an undercover investigation at a KFC “Supplier of the Year” slaughterhouse in Butterfield, Missouri—owned by George’s, Inc.—it was documented that live birds were being thrown by workers and crushed by metal dumping machines. Birds were often impaled by mangled transport cages, and workers were instructed to simply yank them out when this happened; PETA’s investigator saw workers doing this and found dismembered limbs left behind in cages after the birds had been removed.”

“A whistleblower at a Tyson slaughterhouse testified that birds intentionally were scalded to death, were blown apart by makeshift firecrackers, and had their legs broken by workers to fit them into slaughter-line shackles.”

Workers at a KFC-supplier slaughterhouse in Maryland were documented punching frenzied, terrified birds and spiking them like footballs, among other sadistic acts of cruelty.”

Ugh! I feel terrible! What makes anyone think that animals can be treated this way? It’s like Hitler. Ugh. Please go to one of the sites (if not all of them) below to see more videos, pictures, articles, and ways you can help stop this. There are petitions, letters and other things that you can send to KFC, Tyson, and George’s Inc., although who knows what will happen. After all these years all we get are empty promises that they will fix their animal welfare conditions, and then year after year we still find out that the workers are allowed to treat the animals like crap. The industry did publicly announce that they were educating their employees on more humane practices and that they were going to take this matter seriously, however by paying workers (and often many are immigrants) poorly, demanding the workers to produce at incredibly fast speeds, it’s hard for the promises to be kept. As long as there is a high demand for chicken, there will be high demands of the employees and slaughterhouses, meaning there won’t really be any success at properly producing the meat. The only thing we can do right now that sends a clear message is by not eating it. By not consuming it and purchasing it is the only way they will stop making money off such cruelty and get away with it. Less demand for the meat, and more demand for humanity, may be the only way to get this message across. It’s so sad! Please support your local farmers and buy organic chicken. Please stop giving Tyson and KFC your money to abuse animals!

Please go to any/all of these sites: kfccruelty.com, peta.org, torturedbytyson.com, compassionoverkilling.com. Also at almost all these sites you can sign up for a FREE vegetarian starter kit!

Look at this claim from KFC: “KFC suppliers, KFC and the National Chicken Council have standards for stocking density to ensure birds have sufficient space and are healthy. … The cleanliness of these facilities and the health of the birds are top priorities for the farmers.” Take note that ALL my pictures are from KFC suppliers! Top priority my ass!!

Glycemic Index Knowledge

While I am trying to cut high glycemic index foods out of my diet for the sake of my face, I realize that cutting out the high glycemic index foods could also help out other factors in my health, such as my weight. I am not an overweight person by any means, but the weight that I do have I know is not proportionate in muscle and fat. I am carrying lots of extra fat, which shows in my thighs and gut.

Basically in a nut shell high glycemic index foods are “bad” carbs. They are usually high in sugar so when you consume them in excess they raise your blood sugar, causing your body to store more fat. So I am more convinced than ever to cut these out of my diet. Here I have a list of the highest gylcemic index foods, and the lowest so that we can all shed some pounds and also clear up our acne! (Anything not listed here falls in the “medium” section of glycemic foods and can be consumed in moderation.)

High
Waffles, doughnuts.
Rice cakes, white bread, white rolls, baguettes.
Golden grahams, puffed wheat cereals, Rice krispies, Cornflakes.
Ice cream.
Watermelon (of course, my fave fruit). Bananas.
Rice pasta, brown pasta! (Shocking! Something I thought was good for me, is actually harming me?! Oh why!? Cruel world.)
Macaroni and cheese.
Chips, potatoes, mashed potatoes-basically any potatoes but sweet potatoes.
Corn chips, jelly beans, pretzels.
Broad beans.

Low
Multi grain bread, whole grain.
All bran cereals.
Rye.
Almost all fruits.
Protein enriched spagetti, fettucine, vermicelli, whole wheat spagetti.
Sweet potatoes, cooked carrots, yam. (In my opinion, gross, gross and gross. Oh well, time to broaden my horizons.)
Peanuts, jams. (Yay peanut butter and jelly!)
Tomato soup.
Basically all veggies.

Sources:
http://www.southbeach-diet-plan.com/glycemicfoodchart.htm, http://www.associatedcontent.com/article/548269/high_and_low_glycemic_index_foods_a.html?cat=5, workplacehealthchecks.com

PSMF; Day 3

So far PSMF has been going rather fair. Fair defined as that I’m on the way there, but getting there very slowly. Given that it’s day 3, I know that I shouldn’t have expected miracles yet but I do wish I was seeing some sort of difference. The only large changes I’ve accomplished so far is washing my face twice a day, applying the Tea Tree Oil, and not wearing makeup. Of course these are just the changes I’ve been making from the outside. Inside, I haven’t incorporated too many vegetables or fruits yet. For a vegetarian, I am a very poor veggie/fruit eater. On the other hand, I never miss a chance of consuming a carb; Which is probably my biggest problem thus far. According to information I had already found out weeks before, dairy and carbs (high glycemic index foods) are very bad for your skin and cause acne. I know this, and yet I still cannot put that piece of bread down! I need help people.

Many sources, including researchers in Australia have shown that there are “tremendous results in reducing moderate to severe acne by administrating a low carb, low glycemic index diet to patients” so I need to cut the crap, I mean carbs. Damn. I made it sound so easy to quit caffeine and pop, yet I don’t even know where to begin with carbs. I think my biggest challenge in decreasing carbs is that I need to increase fruits and veggies. Pooey. So that’s my next challenge; Finding fruits and veggies I like in order to stop eating all these carbs! (Hopefully I’ll lose some weight in the process too, no?)

So far my opinion on the Tea Tree Oil is that (1) it just smells and (2) it’s too soon to know.  I have a fear that the Tea Tree Oil has done nothing for me but make me sick from the odor. Given that it’s only day 3, I don’t truly feel that I should give up on the Tree Tea Oil just yet…but I am going to incorporate the aide of benzoyl peroxide. I understand that my face may peel a bit but you now what? Peel away! Peel away the top layer too while you’re at it! More later! Here are pictures of my “progress” (or lack there of).