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Paleo Vs Vegan

Paleo Vs Vegan

It is difficult to read a magazine, turn on the TV, or search the web these days, and not come across an ad for “the next big thing” in the health and fitness field. “Miracle” weight loss pills, and “Scientific Breakthrough” equipment are other terms attention grabbing terms make it difficult to detect the quality information from the hype.

Two of the most common trends right now are the vegan and paleo diets. While these diets do have some similarities, there are also very major differences. Both claim to be the most effective ways to lose weight, and live a healthy lifestyle. Let’s look at the similarities and differences.

The main focus of the vegan diet, which for many is more of a lifestyle, is that they do not consume any animal products. While vegetarians simply do not eat meat, vegans will not eat products including eggs or dairy. It is a very restrictive diet, and vegans often struggle to find adequate protein sources. There are options out there though, and many vegans are able to get all of their nutrients without meat, eggs or dairy. The vegan diet typically consists largely of fruits and vegetables, along with grains.

The paleo diet has a major difference from the vegan diet, in that it has a large focus on meat consumption. This solves the protein issue that many vegans run into, but does that make it better? Paleos also have a large focus on fruits and vegetables, although many of them focus more on the fruits than vegetables. This is often because of the sugar in many fruits, and the effects that is has on blood sugar and insulin levels. Vegetables tend to score lower on the glycemic index, while many fruits score high. With the GI, lower scores are better. Foods that score a 55 or less are considered low glycemic, and are ideal for weight loss, maintaining level blood sugar, and helping control diabetes. So what don’t people using the paleo diet eat? Grains. No bread, pasta, or other grain products. The theory behind this diet is that our bodies are more designed to work like they did before people farmed. The main problem that people face with the paleo diet is a lack of complex carbs. These carbs can be found in fruit, which is why people tend to restrict fruit intake, but not eliminate it.

Both diets consist of fruits and vegetable intake, but one avoids, not only meat, but all animal products. The other has meat consumption as a main part of the diet. How can both claim to be the best way to go when they are so different. The answer as to why both work for weight loss is actually very simple. Both diets eliminate high sugar, heavily processed foods. In a world where the obesity rate is rising year after year, the focus needs to be less on “miracle” diets, and more on eating healthy. I do not believe that either diet is “better” than the other. The important thing is that you are avoiding the “bad” stuff, and getting all of your nutrients. This can be difficult with restrictive diets, but it is possible.…

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How To Survive the Holidays As A Vegan

How To Survive the Holidays As A Vegan

Life as a vegan can be tough during the holidays. The sweet aroma of all those wintertime goodies and the pressure from friends that a little taste won’t hurt can be overwhelming at times. Nonetheless, you’ve made a commitment to this thing and you’re determined to see it through so you remain strong. Well, that’s all fine and dandy in la la land, but in the real world most newly transitioned vegans cave under the pressure. That’s why you need some strategies to help you withstand the pressures. So, here are some tips to help you out.

1. Do your own vegan holiday feast – This year was the first time that I did this and I must admit that I was really proud of myself. I held nothing back. From tofurkey and dressing to collards and yams I brought it and made it the best vegan Thanksgiving ever! Try this on your own and you’ll find that the feeling from being able to eat everything at the table is exhilarating.

2. Ask the host to hold the meat – Usually, if you ask nicely the host won’t mind doing this for a few of the veggie dishes. Pitch it as a healthier alternative to the traditional way of cooking veggies and she may even continue the practice beyond the holidays.

3. Bring your own – It always amazes me at how curious people are about vegan food. Whenever I bring a vegan dish it’s always a hit and people rave about how it taste just like ‘regular’ food as if vegans eat some type of alien food or something. Also, if I bring a tossed salad there are always those who are grateful as there is rarely a salad option available during this time of year.

4. Offer to host – Use the holidays as an opportunity to educate your family and close friends on veganism by playing host. Serve an all-vegan feast and be sure to include something for the die-hard meat eaters such as tofurkey as well as dishes that appeal to the less meat-addicted. Not only will your guests get the benefit of a healthy holiday feast, but they’ll be more knowledgeable about veganism.

5. Issue a challenge – Challenge your family and friends to a meat-out holiday. If they’re competitive they’ll be up for it. Moreover, they’ll swear that they aren’t addicted to meat the way that you say they are so they’ll be anxious to prove you wrong.

6. Dine out at a vegan restaurant – I know its not the most ideal solution, but it is a viable option. Many vegan restaurants open during the holidays with you in mind so if all else fails you can always enjoy a nice, vegan holiday feast at your favorite vegan restaurant. The food is sure to be scrumptious and you won’t have to worry about not getting your fill or having a nice selection of vegan-friendly food options to choose from.…

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The Various Types of Vegetarian Diets

The Various Types of Vegetarian Diets

With heart disease and obesity climbing in the industrial nations men, women and children are gradually turning to vegetarian eating habits to promote their healthy lifestyles. As a vegetarian you would not have to worry about bad cholesterol or unwanted trans-fats in your diet. The downside to a vegetarian diet is to make sure you get the right amount of balanced nutrition from your diet. Today we will look at three of the major “Vegetarian” Diets.

All types of vegetarian diets abstain from animal products some are more strict than others though.

1: Lacto-Vegetarian

This particular diet allows a person to include cheese, yogurt, butter and milk into their diet.

2: Lacto-Ovo

Close to Lacto-Vegetarian but allows the consumption of eggs also. This is the most widely practiced vegetarian diet.

3: Vegan

This is the strictest of them all. No type of animal flesh or product is allowed.

The biggest problem facing the vegetarian lifestyle is the lack of certain nutrients like protein, minerals like iron, calcium, and zinc, and vitamins like B-12 and D. The more strict the vegetarian diet the harder it is to get these essential nutrients.

To combat this problem Soy is the number one ingredient for protein. Soy “burgers”, “chicken”, and “cold Cuts” are available for your eating pleasure while died beans, kale and spinach are excellent sources of Iron.

Any serious Vegetarian should also make sure that they take supplements to ensure that they have the complete range of vitamins and minerals that their bodies need. No matter what reason or types of vegetarian diets you follow it is crucial that you be keenly aware of your nutritional needs. A doctor or nutritionist should be consulted before deciding on the types of vegetarian diets.…

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Science of the Yogic Diet

Science of the Yogic Diet

If we consider our bodies to be the living temple for the soul, naturally we would want the body to be clean and in perfect working order. Unfortunately, we put many things into the body that make optimum health challenging because it intensifies toxicity and makes the digestive system work overtime.

The yogic diet is designed to create perfect balance in the body, therefore relaxing and settling the mind,and the body can function with more ease and vitality. In ayurveda this is called the state of “sattva”. A balanced, neutral state of being. There are three qualities in the body, tamas, rajas, and sattva. Everything we eat and think create dominance of one of these and lesser qualities of the others. Tamas is the quality of inertia or sluggishness. Rajas is the active or sometimes overactive energy. Sattva, of course is the middle, balanced ground we seek.

Now, let’s look at some of the practical reasons to follow a yogic, vegetarian, (or even better) a vegan diet. If we compare our physical structure with that of flesh-eating mammals, such as lions or tigers, we see first that our teeth were designed to do different things.Flesh-eaters have long,sharp teeth to tear flesh of bones, as well as a rough tongue to lick the flesh from the bones. They also have strong claws to catch and kill prey and excellent night vision. The digestive tract of these mammals are about 2-3 times their body length and they gulp food without much chewing. The reason for this is that the meat can pass through the system quickly before it putrefies. For plant -eating mammals,such as cows, goats, and us humans, we have flat teeth for grinding vegetables, smooth tongues, no claws, and difficulty seeing after dark. Our intestines are 6-7 times our body length to allow full digestion of the vegetation without the need to pass through rapidly. Lastly, the ph in the saliva and stomach is different and we release enzymes to begin digestion in the mouth.

So,if you think that this makes sense, here a few tips to begin transitioning from carnivore to herbivore.

Take your time! It took me a year to shift and not feel like I was depriving myself.

Give up the easiest food first until comfortable.

Try and avoid, white sugar, artificial anything, and refined, processed foods.

Chew well! Digestion begins in the mouth. Enjoy every bite.

It’s better to fast than to eat fast.

Eat modestly. We eat way more than we need and all diseases originate in the overloading of the stomach.

Drink liquids before or after the meal. It dilutes the digestive juices if taken while eating.

Eat cooked foods first and raw after(salads). Raw takes longer to digest and will back up the digestive process if eaten first.

Treat your temple with respect and care and in turn it will carry you through the world with more ease and vitality. Salud!

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Tasty Vegan Soup Recipes

Tasty Vegan Soup Recipes

A vegan does not eat animals or animal products, which rules out meat, fish, poultry, milk, eggs, and cream. Vegans do however eat nuts, fruit, vegetables, herbs, spices, and grains, which means there are plenty of tasty vegan soup recipes that you could create without sacrificing any flavor.

If you are a fan of vegetable soups like pumpkin soup, you can make something like this if you have vegan or vegetarian guests coming to visit. Pumpkin soup is a particular favorite and there are many varieties that you can make.

Use a vegetable stock instead of chicken or beef stock and add whichever other vegetables you fancy. If you want to make a creamy soup, you can use a vegan creamer for a similar effect. You might prefer to make a spicy pumpkin soup or a fragrant curried pumpkin soup recipe.

How to Adapt Non-Vegan Soups for Vegans

There are some ingredients which you need to alter when making a non-vegan soup and there are other things that you cannot substitute. Be careful when cooking for strict vegans because there are some things that you might not know contain animal products.

Wine, for example, sometimes contains gelatin, fish bladders, or egg whites. The same applies to beer. Mayonnaise often contains eggs, although you can get vegan and vegetarian versions of mayonnaise. You can even get vegan Worcestershire sauce because the original product contains anchovies.

Maple syrup sometimes contains tiny amounts of butter, cream, or milk, which might surprise you. This is to stop the syrup from foaming. Flour tortillas might contain whey, glycerides, and lard. Tomato-based sauces sometimes contain animal fat, so check the ingredients labels on anything you buy to serve vegan guests, just in case.

Recipe for Vegan Soup with Lentils and Leeks

This delicious soup is suitable for vegans and non-vegans alike because it is so rich-tasting and full of wonderful flavor and texture. The combination of leeks, carrot, celery, onion, and tomatoes provide the base for this soup and garlic, thyme, and bay leaf are used to add an herbal taste. The barley and lentils add extra flavor and texture and this is a very nutritious soup. It makes enough to serve eight people.

What you will need:

2 sliced leeks

1/4 cup raw barley

1 minced clove garlic

1 chopped carrot

1 chopped rib celery

9 cups vegetable stock

19 oz can chopped tomatoes with liquid

1 chopped onion

1 cup raw lentils

1 bay leaf

1 tablespoon vegetable oil

1/4 teaspoon dried thyme

Salt and black pepper, to taste

How to make it:

Saute the leeks and onion with the garlic in a soup pot in the oil until tender. Add the lentils, bay leaf, vegetable stock, and barley. Bring the soup to a boil and turn the heat down. Simmer the soup for half an hour, stirring it occasionally.

Add the rest of the ingredients and cover the soup pot. Simmer the soup for an hour or until the lentils are tender. Remove the bay leaf and serve.…

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Tips For Becoming Vegetarian

Tips For Becoming Vegetarian

There are many different reasons for becoming vegetarian: religious beliefs, strong feelings about animal treatment, concerns for environmental sustainability and personal health reasons. Whatever a person’s reason for choosing a vegetarian diet, doing so will certainly provide benefits to his or her life. This article focuses on the health benefits of vegetarianism. There are just as many levels of vegetarianism as there are reasons for becoming vegetarian. Semi-vegetarians are those who still eat fish and other meats, just no red meat. A typical vegetarian does not eat meat – only plant foods. Lacto-ovovegetarians still eat eggs and dairy. Lacto-vegetarians eat dairy but do not eat eggs. Vegans not only do not eat meat, dairy products or eggs, but also eliminate fish and all animal byproducts.

Becoming vegetarian can be as easy or difficult as you choose to make it. Of course, the more you choose to omit from your diet, the more involved the transition will be. For those who choose to eliminate red meat only, this is fairly easy to accomplish. In contrast, those who choose to become vegan will have a more challenging adjustment to make. Regardless of the level of vegetarianism chosen, informing family and friends about your choice is an essential first step. You will need their support to stay on track, and they need to know your menu needs. Remember why you became a vegetarian in the first place. If you do so simply to follow a trend, your decision will likely not last.

One of the most common pitfalls experienced is lack of knowledge about available options. Often, individuals will be successful for a short period only to resume their previous eating habits out of frustration. To avoid this problem, research carefully beforehand. Plan ahead rather than allowing yourself to get stuck in a situation that does not cater to your level of vegetarianism. Familiarize yourself with options and research how to prepare them. Often, this is not as difficult as it sounds. More than likely, many of your favorite recipes can be easily converted into vegetarian dishes. You may be surprised at how little you need to change in any given dish. Many make the mistake of believing they need to learn entirely new recipes, and they become overwhelmed. Consider tacos and lasagna, for example. Ground beef can be changed to turkey if you are only eliminating red meat. If you are eliminating all but fish, you can make fish tacos. If you are eliminating all meats but still eat dairy, you can make lasagna with just noodles, sauce, cheese and vegetables. Starting out this way is more realistic and manageable than attempting to learn all new recipes.

Some advise beginning in small steps, even if you plan to become vegan. You could first start by eliminating all meat except fish. One-by-one, you can eliminate fish, dairy, eggs, then animal byproducts like gelatin from your menu. It can be discouraging to attempt to do this all at once only to later find out you have accidentally eaten something you did not know contained animal properties. Taking it one step at a time can prevent you from becoming overwhelmed. If a person sets out to be vegan, in many cases the mental checklist is just too large to handle. Many foods, even fried vegetables, are prepared in animal oils. If you become overwhelmed with the extent of change necessary for your chosen plan, you may give up on the vegetarian idea entirely. Always remember, getting part of the way is better for your body than not making it at all!…

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What Is Veganism? A Description of the Vegan Lifestyle and Why Some People Choose to Be Vegan

What Is Veganism? A Description of the Vegan Lifestyle and Why Some People Choose to Be Vegan

Many people have heard the word “vegan” but don’t know exactly what it means, how being a vegan is different from being a vegetarian, or why a person might choose to live a vegan lifestyle.

Vegans, like vegetarians, do not eat meat. Vegans and vegetarians do not consume meat from any animals – including cows, pigs, chickens, deer, fish, clams, or any other creature that was once living. This decision may be based on concerns about the person’s own health or the inhumane treatment of animals or both.

The vegan diet goes beyond the vegetarian diet by eliminating all other animal-derived products. Vegans do not eat eggs, dairy products (milk, cheese, etc.), or honey, since all of these come from animals. Because egg and dairy products have been linked to health problems and allergies in humans, the decision to maintain a vegan diet may be as much about health issues as animal welfare issues.

Animal farming also has tremendous consequences for the environment, and many people choose a vegan lifestyle in order to reduce their personal negative impact on the earth. In fact, some argue that becoming vegan does much more to help the environment than driving a hybrid electric car!

The vegetarian stance proclaims that animal-derived products such as eggs and dairy are acceptable to eat since animals are not killed in order to procure them. While this seems true on the surface, a little research reveals that animals are, in fact, killed as a direct result of the egg and dairy industries.

In addition, animals that are farmed (even for products other than meat) are subjected to horrific living conditions. Some of these practices are constant forced pregnancies for dairy cows, separating mother cows from their newborn babies, debeaking chickens without anesthetic, and cramming birds into cages without sufficient room to move.

Sadly, free-range and cage-free farms offer hardly anything in terms of improved living conditions for farm animals. And at the end of their milk- or egg-producing lives, they are roughly forced onto trucks and taken to the slaughterhouse, just like their counterparts on farms that are not free-range or cage-free. Without going into gory details, it is sufficient to say that very few of us could stomach the conditions at the slaughterhouse.

Veganism is not simply about maintaining an animal-free diet. The goal of veganism is to eliminate, as much as possible, the exploitation of animals for the benefit of humans. Vegans choose household and personal care items that do not contain animal ingredients and that are not tested on animals. They do not use wool, leather, fur or other products derived from animals. Nor do they exploit animals for entertainment, considering zoos, rodeos, and animal circuses to be sources of animal cruelty.

Being vegan means making choices to reduce animal suffering. However, there are animal-derived materials in so many products in our modern society that it would be impossible to live a completely vegan lifestyle. Animals’ bodies are used in plastic bags, car tires, a number of medicines, brake fluid, concrete, cardboard, and paper – to name just a few products!

Given this reality, vegans strive to do their best in their own lives, doing what they feel they are able to do in order to reduce animal exploitation. In the process, they positively impact the earth’s environment and also improve their own personal health.…