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11

Jan

My daily breakfast smoothie.
Today it’s featuring banana, pineapple, canary melon, spinach, kale, raspberries, goji berries, hemp hearts, spirulina, water, and orange juice! 
Gives me energy to kick butt all day!

My daily breakfast smoothie.
Today it’s featuring banana, pineapple, canary melon, spinach, kale, raspberries, goji berries, hemp hearts, spirulina, water, and orange juice!
Gives me energy to kick butt all day!

22

Dec

You Know You Are a Vegan When…

youknowyouareaveganwhen:

what you kind of want to do to people buying animal products…image

This one’s for you, getthisfirefighterfit ! ;)

20

Dec

getthisfirefighterfit:

If you can’t get a good pump going with the TRX, then you’re doing it wrong ;)
Still trying to get used to the rounder look that comes with gaining, but overall I’m happy with the results I’m getting..
Building muscle is such a slow process, hard to be patient sometimes.. Oh well, slowly but surely I’m getting there :)
Now get off Tumblr and go workout ;) Unless you already have, then eat something healthy/tasty and be proud of yourself!
Have a great day/night guys

Guys.  I don’t usually like to brag, but my boyfriend is so darn cute. This is one lucky veggie-loving lady :).

getthisfirefighterfit:

If you can’t get a good pump going with the TRX, then you’re doing it wrong ;)

Still trying to get used to the rounder look that comes with gaining, but overall I’m happy with the results I’m getting..

Building muscle is such a slow process, hard to be patient sometimes.. Oh well, slowly but surely I’m getting there :)

Now get off Tumblr and go workout ;) Unless you already have, then eat something healthy/tasty and be proud of yourself!

Have a great day/night guys

Guys.  I don’t usually like to brag, but my boyfriend is so darn cute. This is one lucky veggie-loving lady :).

Every time someone uses the excuse ‘but they’re going to die anyways’ as a justification for eating animals, I always feel like asking them:
‘And how would you rather die; of old age or murder?’.

14

Dec

This one goes out to all of my  “in search of convenience foods” followers.  We all have different preferences, goals, and guidelines when it comes to what we will/want to eat, but I think one thing that most people share is a desire to have a few vegan meals on hand that they can throw together in a pinch without spending hours in the kitchen.  Following are three that all take between fifteen minutes and half an hour to put together, brought to you by yours-truly.

Baked Portobello “Pizzas” with a Baby Spinach and Arugula Salad

For these gorgeous bites, I threw together several things that I had in the fridge/freezer, paired them with a crisp and tangy salad, and found myself with a satisfying and simple dinner.

Preheat your oven to 375 F.

Lightly brush the bottom of several de-stemmed portobello mushrooms with (organic, if possible) extra virgin olive oil (EVOO), and place on a baking sheet.

In the “cup” of your portobello, spread on 1-2 tbs of marinara (I used homemade marinara that I keep in the freezer, but feel free to use store-bought or a little tomato paste, if necessary). 

If you love your greens like I do, throw on a spoonful of basil pesto (I used my own again, but some fresh basil leaves will do in a pinch). 

In a pan over medium heat, cook 1-3 red or yellow onions (depending on how many pizzas you’re doing)  in a spash of EVOO, add 1/4 cup balsamic vinegar and 1-2 Tbs of a sweetener of your choice (I used maple syrup) to the pan and cook until the onions have become very soft and the extra liquid has cooked down.  Throw your caramelized onions on top of your basil pesto.

Add any other vegetables you like to the “pizza”, and top with a dairy-free cheese of your choice.  Daiya is great if you don’t mind a little processed food in your diet (but keep it to a minimum!), but I decided to mainly use a homemade raw almond cheese that I had thrown together earlier.  A cashew-based cheese would be amazing, too. 

Bake in the oven for 5-10 minutes, and enjoy!

——————

Vegan Mac and Cheeze, Colourful Sprout and Spinach Salad, and Fresh Fruit

Okay, so what are the other two meals you see here?  Well, the second top photo is a lunch that my mom and I threw together the other day.  We made a vegan mac and cheese dish inspired by Chef Chloe’s recipe, but we used an organic gluten-free quinoa pasta.  If you really want to optimize the convenience factor, Road’s End Organics makes an organic vegan mac and cheese that is pretty darn tasty, and just as fast as the childhood KD I wish I never ate ;).  I’ve seen this brand in several local health food stores, as well as select grocery stores.

To the meal, we added a quick salad of baby spinach (a favourite of mine) mixed sprouts, red bell pepper, and a bowl of chickpeas to throw into whatever needed a little extra protein (use canned if you’re in a hurry, although fresh/sprouted are, of course, optimal). This amazing brand of raw vegan salad dressing (feel free to make your own, but remember that this is my convenience post) made the whole thing practically irresistible. To enhance the fresh/raw factor, we shared a GORGEOUS dragon fruit (which happened to be on sale) and each chowed down on a banana as dessert. 

——————

The Fancy-Schmancy Piggy-Free BLT

The last meal here is the fastest out of the three, but equally tasty!  We used organic spelt bread, but feel free to use whatever healthy version you have on hand.

Onto the toasted bread, I smashed half of an avocado and sprinkled it with a little fresh lime juice.  To this, I added dijon mustard, basil pesto, spinach, alfalfa sprouts, fresh tomato, sea salt and cracked black pepper, and finished it off with some tempeh bacon.  I don’t regularly eat any processed meat alternatives, but I was just too curious to not give this piggy-free version a try.


Anyways, there you have it!  Three quick, tasty, vegan meals that are easily customizable and pretty good for you, too!  I always suggest to people that they avoid as much processed and pre-made food as possible, and stick with raw fruits, vegetables, nuts, and seeds when ever they can for optimal health.  I hope that these meals seem attainable as well as offering some new perspective on some old favourites.

All the best, and happy eating! :)

12

Dec

(Source: wordsfromnature)

11

Dec

A few seldom-considered sources of plant-based protein.  Just another few things you can add to the list next time someone asks you where you get your protein from ;).

A few seldom-considered sources of plant-based protein.  Just another few things you can add to the list next time someone asks you where you get your protein from ;).

10

Dec

http://www.mindbodygreen.com/0-5875/15-Reasons-to-Use-Apple-Cider-Vinegar-Every-Day.html

missusvreeken:

canadianvegan:

15 Reasons to Use Apple Cider Vinegar Every Day!

I know it stinks so bad but for some of these benefits I’m willing to give it a try!

My husband has really bad allergies, but is allergic to most allergy medication! Looks like we need to give ACV a try.

Cheap, easy, safe, and effective.  Take a quick read of this article if you get the chance :).

05

Dec

Eight Ingredients You Never Want to See on Your Nutrition Label

america-wakiewakie:

1. BHA
This preservative is used to prevent rancidity in foods that contain oils. Unfortunately, BHA (butylated hydroxyanisole) has been shown to cause cancer in rats, mice, and hamsters. The reason the FDA hasn’t banned it is largely technical—the cancers all occurred in the rodents’ forestomachs, an organ that humans don’t have. Nevertheless, the study, published in the Japanese Journal of Cancer Research, concluded that BHA was “reasonably anticipated to be a carcinogen,” and as far as I’m concerned, that’s reason enough to eliminate it from your diet.

2. Parabens
These synthetic preservatives are used to inhibit mold and yeast in food. The problem is parabens may also disrupt your body’s hormonal balance. A study in Food Chemical Toxicology found that daily ingestion decreased sperm and testosterone production in rats, and parabens have been found present in breast cancer tissues.

3. Partially Hydrogenated Oil
I’ve harped on this before, but it bears repeating: Don’t confuse “0 g trans fat” with being trans fat-free. The FDA allows products to claim zero grams of trans fat as long as they have less than half a gram per serving. That means they can have 0.49 grams per serving and still be labeled a no-trans-fat food. Considering that two grams is the absolute most you ought to consume in a day, those fractions can quickly add up. The telltale sign that your snack is soiled with the stuff? Look for partially hydrogenated oil on the ingredient statement. If it’s anywhere on there, then you’re ingesting artery-clogging trans fat.

4. Sodium Nitrite
Nitrites and nitrates are used to inhibit botulism-causing bacteria and to maintain processed meats’ pink hues, which is why the FDA allows their use. Unfortunately, once ingested, nitrite can fuse with amino acids (of which meat is a prime source) to form nitrosamines, powerful carcinogenic compounds. Ascorbic and erythorbic acids—essentially vitamin C—have been shown to decrease the risk, and most manufacturers now add one or both to their products, which has helped. Still, the best way to reduce risk is to limit your intake.

5. Caramel Coloring
This additive wouldn’t be dangerous if you made it the old-fashioned way—with water and sugar, on top of a stove. But the food industry follows a different recipe: They treat sugar with ammonia, which can produce some nasty carcinogens. How carcinogenic are these compounds? A Center for Science in the Public Interest report asserted that the high levels of caramel color found in soda account for roughly 15,000 cancers in the U.S. annually. Another good reason to scrap soft drinks? They’re among The 20 Worst Drinks in America.

6. Castoreum
Castoreum is one of the many nebulous “natural ingredients” used to flavor food. Though it isn’t harmful, it is unsettling. Castoreum is a substance made from beavers’ castor sacs, or anal scent glands. These glands produce potent secretions that help the animals mark their territory in the wild. In the food industry, however, 1,000 pounds of the unsavory ingredient are used annually to imbue foods—usually vanilla or raspberry flavored—with a distinctive, musky flavor.

7. Food Dyes
Plenty of fruit-flavored candies and sugary cereals don’t contain a single gram of produce, but instead rely on artificial dyes and flavorings to suggest a relationship with nature. Not only do these dyes allow manufacturers to mask the drab colors of heavily processed foods, but certain hues have been linked to more serious ailments. A Journal of Pediatrics study linked Yellow 5 to hyperactivity in children, Canadian researchers found Yellow 6 and Red 40 to be contaminated with known carcinogens, and Red 3 is known to cause tumors. The bottom line? Avoid artificial dyes as much as possible.

8. Hydrolyzed Vegetable Protein
Hydrolyzed vegetable protein, used as a flavor enhancer, is plant protein that has been chemically broken down into amino acids. One of these acids, glutamic acid, can release free glutamate. When this glutamate joins with free sodium in your body, they form monosodium glutamate (MSG), an additive known to cause adverse reactions—headaches, nausea, and weakness, among others—in sensitive individuals. When MSG is added to products directly, the FDA requires manufacturers to disclose its inclusion on the ingredient statement. But when it occurs as a byproduct of hydrolyzed protein, the FDA allows it to go unrecognized.

Read full text…

Important stuff to know, everyone.

(Source: america-wakiewakie)

04

Dec

BEST DAY EVER!

My dearest mom and I took a road trip today to visit a store that all of my friends and colleagues at work can’t stop raving about.  Upon entering Nature’s Emporium, I immediately understood the hype!  This place is a vegan and health food lover’s dream!  Every leaf and sprout of the massive produce section is organic, and they even have a raw food section! 

Once you enter the packaged foods area, the goodies just keep coming!  Every manner of healthy (and not-so-healthy) goody that you can imagine lines the shelves of this place, and we ended up spending over an hour just drooling over the massive selection of vegan-friendly treats. 

Once past the food, there’s the beauty aisle.  After ages of struggling to find a half-decent selection of cruelty-free and natural beauty products, it was all here!!  *Sigh*. 

And then, there was the eat-in food.  Vegan options.  All organic.  Gluten-free options.  All delicious.  I ended up loading as much onto my plate as I could manage, which consisted of brown rice pilaf, Mexican quinoa, Asian sesame salad topped with beets and sprouts, sweet green peas and carrots, a fried spiced tofu ball, fresh fruit salad, and a Mediterranean red lentil soup.  Drool.

After I recovered from the overwhelming excitement that food heaven evoked, we headed to the huge mall just a kilometer down the road, where I FINALLY got to indulge in some super-awesome LUSH products!  Vegan and organic mascara and eyeliner are now - finally - going to be a part of my little makeup bag of goodies.

And then….THEN it was time to enter the pink glittery haven of Victoria’s Secret for the best sport’s bra I’ve ever had!  Oh my Veggies, this is a gym-going girl’s dream.  I can’t believe how comfy and cute it is, and a little something to add a touch of “oomph” to my veggie-powered workouts never hurts!

Once we arrived back at home, we threw together a quick dinner of crock pot baked beans, my green guacamole with sprouted black bean tortilla chips, and an assorted sprout salad with raw vegan ranch dressing. Yummy!

Anyways, that was my fabulous day.  On the rare occasions that I splurge a little, however, I make sure to remind myself what a luxury it really is.  I am so fortunate to live well, have a roof over my head, good food on my plate, money (not much, but more than many), and a supportive and loving family and partner.  I do not take these days for granted, and I encourage all of my readers to give back in any way possible whenever the opportunity arises.  Kindness and compassion are gifts that we can all afford to be generous with. 

Pass it on, and happy eating! :)