Category Archives: Vegetarian Living

Another all-veg school

NY Elementary school 1Another public school in New York City just went all vegetarian – and this time it was the kids who asked for it.  This is the third New York City public school to go all veg. The school’s principal, Arlene Ramos, revealed that students asked for healthier, meatless options and that she is proud to be able to introduce the new menu. “My students have expressed an interest in healthier eating, and the school gave them the option to choose this menu I am very proud of their decision.” Lentil sloppy Joes, pasta fagioli, Mexicali chili, braised black beans with plantains, and teriyaki crunchy tofu will now be the lunch options for the 1,250 pre-K through 5th graders at Public School 1, Bergen Elementary School.

Brooklyn Borough President Eric L. Adams—who adopted a vegan diet last October to conquer his type 2 diabetes—supports the menu update. “It is particularly exciting to learn that this is a youth-driven initiative,” Adams said. The drive for all New York City public schools to go all veg is a campaign of New York Coalition for Healthy School Food headed by Amy Hamlin.  We’ve previously written about the other schools that have gone all veg.

For years we have heard every excuse from many of Washington’s public schools. But, if a city as big and diverse as New York can do it, we’re sure Seattle can as well. Let’s hope New York City will set an example for Seattle and other cities to follow.

Four pieces of good news for vegetarians

We’re happy to see the growth of food made with plant-based ingredients. It’s never been easier to be a vegetarian. Our choices and access to plant-based foods continues to grow and grow. Here are the latest four pieces of news:

Plant-based food – the leading trend

Plant Based foodsAt a recent Natural Products Expo, plant-based foods was the leading trend in the food industry.  Environmental, health and ethical concerns related to the production and consumption of animal products has moved purposefully plant-based foods, once relegated to the vegan and vegetarian minority, into the mainstream. Innovative new meat and dairy alternatives are improving upon taste and texture all the time, therefore widening the appeal of a plant-based way of eating. Read more

Celebrate launch of California Pizza Kitchen’s vegan pizza!

Come celebrate the breakthrough! Daiya nondairy “cheese” will be served for the first time ever at a California Pizza Kitchen. The kickoff is this Wednesday (Aug 9) 5pm – 8pm at the California Pizza Kitchen, Park West Plaza in Tukwila.

To celebrate this historic moment, the location is throwing a HUGE launch party for attendees to enjoy pizza, drinks, and tons of free Daiya giveaways.

We want the dairy-free “cheese” to be offered nationally, so make sure to invite all of your friends so we can show California Pizza Kitchen just how big the demand for vegan options really is!

We thank our friends at Daiya and Vegan Outreach for putting together this historic event.

Daiya CPK poster

 

Plant-Based Shopping Tips

In Pursuit cover 1.0Shopping is a vital link in the chain for those who follow a plant-based diet, or for those who are curious and want to give it a try. Our handy shopping guide, In Pursuit of Great Food, is a practical guide to help you learn about the many different plant-based choices to stock in your kitchen, and how to get the best value in time and money from your food budget.

Many people are on a tight budget and worry that eating healthy, plant-based food will be expensive. However, if you are willing to plan and prepare your own meals from basic ingredients, you can save quite a bit of money. For those who often find themselves short on time, there’s a wide selection of convenience and prepared products to choose from in many local grocery stores. Read more

You’re going to love Vegfest

Serving Genesis Juice

Genesis Juice is one of over 500 different kinds of food to try

We all love to eat. Wouldn’t it be wonderful if all the foods we love to eat could love us back by making us healthier? That’s what plant-based (or vegetarian) foods can do. In fact, not only does eating plant-based foods make us healthier, it also protects the environment and saves our animal friends. What’s even better is that they taste so delicious. A wonderful opportunity to find out just how delicious plant-based foods can taste is at Seattle’s Vegfest, the largest vegetarian food festival in the country, coming up on April 1 & 2, at the Seattle Center Exhibition Hall on Mercer Street.

Two people eating ice cream

Don’t eat breakfast before you come to Vegfest.  There’s so much good food to sample!

Vegetarian foods, based on fruits, vegetables, whole grains, beans, nuts and seeds, come in all shapes and sizes these days and Vegfest has over 500 different kinds of foods to try. With the plant-based food market growing rapidly, this year’s Vegfest includes many new food products to sample. Some of the ones that caught my eye are chocolate covered quinoa, an almond mousse from Almetta, and a new dairy-free ice cream from NadaMoo. Exciting new food items from Lightlife Foods and Field Roast are also rumored to be debuting at Seattle’s Vegfest for the first time. Try the new egg-free eggs by Follow Your Heart. And for those who like the exotic, why not give Health-Ade Kombucha mushroom beverage a try? And of course, what would Vegfest be without the delicious flavors of Indian Life Foods or the Oriental delights of Sensei Sauce.

Miyoko Schinner

Chef Miyoko Schinner will be speaking at 12:55pm on Saturday

Throughout the weekend, cutting-edge chefs and cookbook authors from around the country will be demonstrating just how easy it is to make your own gourmet vegetarian dishes at home, and doctors – specialists such as urologists, internists, and even an OB/GYN – will be talking about the health benefits of a vegetarian diet. More doctors than ever before will also be on hand to provide health checks, with free blood pressure, cholesterol, and glucose tests, bone scans and ultrasound artery scans, giving people the opportunity to discover just how much a vegetarian diet can help improve their health. A huge selection of cookbooks are available at the Vegfest bookstore, and the kids will enjoy the clown duo, Zero and Somebuddy with their skits on healthy eating.

The food scene in our region is changing fast. Vegfest will feature several vegetarian and veg-friendly restaurants with samples of their extra special treats. Many restaurants, looking to cater to more veg-interested customers in the Puget Sound area, are happy to provide coupons for a free meal to people who join Vegetarians of Washington at Vegfest.

This year, Vegfest is on Saturday and Sunday, April 1st and 2nd, at the Seattle Center Exhibition Hall on Mercer Street.  Admission is only $9 and kids 12 and under are free.  Tickets are available at the door. See Vegfest for more information.

This article was published in the March issue of Natural Awakenings magazine

Can I kiss a meat-eater?

Say No to Meat cover 1.0kissing-with-roseIt’s almost Valentine’s Day, so we thought we’d answer the one question that new vegetarians and vegans are desperate to know…Can I kiss a meat-eater?

The following is an excerpt from our book Say No to Meat: the 411 on ditching meat and going veg.

 

Can I kiss a meat-eater?

There are no rules as to whom you choose to date. If you love every aspect of a person except what they choose to eat, then you may well decide that they should eat their food and you eat yours and both just accept the situation. We know many couples who have lived together happily for many years with this arrangement. Over time, the meat-eating partner may become comfortable with eating vegetarian all the time, or at least most of the time, just choosing a meat dish in a restaurant once in a while…or they may continue to insist on meat at every meal. Either way is OK if you’re OK with it.

Some people feel that their food choices are so important to them that they can’t face the idea of dating someone who eats meat. You are entitled to make that choice, but be aware that at present the percentage of vegetarians in the general population is very small, so it may take a little more work to find a suitable partner. You can try attending vegetarian dinners and get-togethers, or looking online for veggie dates.

Remember that there are many open-minded people out there who just haven’t heard about the benefits of a vegetarian diet, and would be happy to learn about becoming vegetarian in a warm and supportive environment. Don’t deprive them of kisses until they become vegetarian, or they’ll be out the door in no time, and you’ll be back to square one.

How should I tell my date that I’m a vegetarian?

Vegetarian Living – Going to Parties

Say No to Meat cover 1.0The following is an excerpt from our book “Say No to Meat“, by Amanda Strombom and Stewart Rose, published by Healthy Living Publications.  This book includes answers to all the questions you may have about becoming a vegetarian, and is invaluable to new and existing vegetarians alike!

What do you recommend when going out with friends or to parties?

Research beforehand and come prepared. When going out with friends to a restaurant, encourage them to choose a restaurant that you know has some veggie options you can choose. If you aren’t able to influence the choice of restaurant, it may help to look online beforehand to see from their menu what options are available to you. You may need to ask for something special to be made, if you can’t find a suitable menu item. Most chefs and restaurants don’t mind special orders, so it’s important to speak up. Another alternative is to eat beforehand, and just go along to enjoy the company.

Know before you go. At a catered dinner, ask beforehand if possible, whether the caterer has any vegetarian options. When going to a private party, it’s a good idea to mention to the host that you are vegetarian, so that they can cater for your needs if food is to be provided. Alternatively, you can just ask which dishes include meat when you arrive, so that you can be sure to avoid them, rather than putting your host to any special trouble.

Some people just need a little help. You may wish to offer to bring some food, so that you know you’ll have something to eat. At a barbecue, bring a package of veggie burgers or veggie hot dogs for the grill. A potluck is a great opportunity to show others how delicious vegetarian food can be, so it’s worth making a special effort to bring a particularly appetizing dish or two. You can pick something up from a natural foods deli section if you don’t wish to cook. Be sure to eat when you first arrive, since others may like your food so much they eat it all before you get any!

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