Going Vegan!

More evidence that supports the sense, the very great sense, in going vegan!

Some three weeks ago, on June 15th to be exact, I published a post called On Veganism. Jean and I had just watched a film What The Health and what it presented in terms of eating chicken and fish convinced us to immediately go the final step, as in going from being vegetarians to vegans.

Many of you offered kind words and encouragement. Colette Bytes included a link to a blog post that she published in April, 2017. It is called Vegan Future and with her kind permission that post is republished today.

It is chock full of information and videos so do settle down and let all the information provided by Colette ‘speak’ to you! This is really worthy of an evening spent watching all the videos!

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Vegan Future

by Colette Bytes, April 21st 2017

Seventeen percent of human caused greenhouse gases,  come from meat and dairy production. It is actually a greater figure than all CO2 produced by global transportation!

Posted by The Daily Conversation

But is it enough, just to reduce our animal consumption, or should we look at the compelling evidence that we need a Vegan future!

Animal and Environmental Ethics

On a previous blog, I mention the documentary ‘Earthlings’ narrated by Hollywood actor, and lifelong Vegan, Joachim Phoenix. ‘Earthlings’ is the definitive Vegan film on exposing the meat and dairy industry in the US. And while other countries may not have factory farming on such a broad scale, many of the same procedures occur on a smaller scale. No member of the general public is allowed into the kill sections of slaughter houses for a very good reason. It is horrendous to watch a fear-ridden animal that wants to live, face its painful death.

This filmed reaction of a viewer watching ‘Earthlings’ is an average reaction. It is a moving experience for anyone with compassion. Posted by Raw Vegan, Fruitarian, Michael Lanfield, it is worth watching if you cannot bring yourself to actually watch the devastating, but common images of the meat, dairy and egg industry.

Switching your food intake to a plant-based Vegan diet, (eliminating all meat, dairy, egg and seafood), is the biggest change with the most impact that you can possibly make to reduce climate warming, land and water degradation, extinction rates, deforestation, pollution, human and animal suffering, and war (often over lack of food and water resources). And It is the number one thing you can do to improve your own health. It can also cut the cost of your food bill while you continue to eat a healthy diet.

There is no downside to this change if you keep your diet healthy and balanced. You can even eat processed plant-based, meat-like products if you want, but they may cost a similar amount to having meat in your diet.

The United Nations has already stated that we need to switch to a plant based diet if we are to survive.

http://www.un.org/apps/news/story.asp?NewsID=53984

So what is holding you back?

Australian, James Aspey, a survivor of thyroid cancer, has become a Vegan Speaker (on ending animal cruelty) with his own Youtube channel, but he is also one of an exponentially growing number of people who have improved their own health through a plant based diet switch.

James Aspey interview posted by Plant Based News

Find out more about James Aspey on his YouTube channel, Facebook, and on his website:
http://www.jamesaspey.com.au/

Healthy Eating

AllPlants interview on Plant Based News

Lots of new Ethical, Healthy Vegan Ready Made meals like this brand are appearing now on Super market shelves. So even if you don’t ‘do cooking’ you can still find nutritious Vegan options. And Vegan restaurants, holidays and lifestyles are all available now.

And new research is beginning to show that meat and dairy are actually toxic to our body.

Meat is a neurotoxin, Posted by 8/10/10 in London

And for when you have time, do listen to this amazing and life changing Cardiologist’s 1:20:00 hrs talk…on your likelihood of developing heart disease, diabetes, and other life threatening diseases on a meat based diet…and also look at doctor Greger’s work and videos too (links below)

Robert Ostfeld, Cardiologist and Director of a US Cardiology Centre. Posted by Jeanne Schumacher, ‘Plant Power’ YouTube channel

More on Dr Ostfeld is available on The Forks over Knives (film) website https://www.forksoverknives.com/contributors/robert-ostfeld/

Elite Athletes and Hollywood Icons
You’d be surprised how many top athletes eat a vegan diet just to be at the top of their sport…Names like Serena and Venus Williams, Novak Djokovic, and Andy Murray, are all Vegans. Winner of the world Strongman competition is Vegan. Many top boxers eat vegan. Look at PlantBased News on YouTube for lots of informative videos on who is Vegan. And see their 100 countdown of awesome Vegan celebrities.

Top 2017 Vegans posted by PlantBased News

Making the change to Vegan

Eating junk plant-based foods is not advisable as it will lead to nutrient deficiencies…and ultimately a disease state, so you can’t survive on potato crisps, popcorn, and bread….there is a responsibility to eat a balanced fresh food diet to be healthy.

You do need to eat proteins (nuts, legumes, grains, beans, some veggies). You will need to supplement with Vitamin B12, a soil- based, active nutrient essential for our brain & nervous system which we do not get in our diet as we no longer forage and eat unwashed food like our ape ancestors. And you may need to supplement Vit D3 for bone health as we no longer spend enough time outside in the sunshine. Essential oil, Omega 3 can be obtained from flax and hemp seeds. The rest, you should be able to get from a ‘good’ Vegan diet with lots of vegetables, fruits, legumes, beans, grains and nuts. Just 15 grams of nuts per day will give you enough protein to be healthy. Eating Kale and other dark leafy plants, beans, whole grain rice, legumes and some nuts, sweet potatoes are all sources of Calcium. The key to health is to have a full, varied selection of whole plant-based food!

Meat and Dairy Industry  Scare Tactics

The Meat and Dairy industry packers are worried that they will lose their industry and are fighting back with their political power and disinformation campaigns designed to scare us, but the smart companies will begin to think about how they can profit from exponential growth in the Vegan food industry.

Corporate Panick, posted by PlantBased News
Research

There are so many online sources to help you buy, and cook a healthy plant-based diet. Just type ‘Vegan Recipies’ into a search engine and you will find fantastic yummy recipes. You will love the variety and the taste of your new diet. And if you are not into cooking,  mainstream supermarkets are now starting to stock a growing variety of vegan ready made meals, and starting to label Vegan choices.

https://plantbasednews.org/

An all round informative website on Vegan trends, news headlines, and increasing popularity of healthy lifestyles including a plant- based diet.
Medical based RESOURCES on how to stay healthy on a Vegan diet

https://nutritionfacts.org/

Dr Michael Greger, MD, author of Best Seller, ‘How Not to Die’ and distributer of free videos and research on how plant based diets affect us. I have followed his work for years and he backs it all up with science based studies…his short videos and reports are packed with hundreds of supportive reports for a plant based diet.

https://www.drmcdougall.com/

Dr McDougal, Author of ‘A Starch Based Diet’ and follower of Nathan Pritikin, one of the forerunners promoting plant based nutrition.

http://www.theveganjunction.com/top-20-plant-based-health-professionals-to-follow/

Vegan Junction list of Plant-Based Diet health professionals
More Videos

Open Your Eyes – Toronto Pig Save posted by Bite-Size-Vegan

How not To Die – plant based diet by Dr Michael Greger
Latest documentaries to look up

Carnage (only on BBC iPlayer)

The Game Changers

Eating our way to Extinction

What the Health!

Plant Pure Nutrition

And there are so many more resources out there ! Join the growing trend to make this a better world for everyone, by making the biggest difference you can when you shop for food. Pick whole, plant-based, foods and kick the ‘animal eating’ habit to be healthy, stop animal cruelty, and save the environment and reduce global greenhouse gases. What could be a more worthy goal?

Why not check out my blog here on ‘Why do We Hurt Animals?

ooOOoo

This is so much more than just a blog post from Colette. It is a fantastic source of information, from a variety of sources, about why it makes such good sense to become a vegan.

I shall include it as a link from the home page of Learning from Dogs so it may serve as a reference long after it was republished today.

Then what about dogs eating a vegan diet? Sounds a bit strange? Maybe not! I shall be exploring that option with Halo, a company based in Florida, who claim:

Can dogs be vegan? Unlike cats, who are obligate carnivores, dogs can be fed a vegan diet as long as it’s high quality and nutritionally balanced like Halo® Garden of Vegan® dog food.

More on this next week.

In the meantime, I’m taking a day off tomorrow but please do read George Monbiot’s latest post, being republished here on Friday, 6th July.

36 thoughts on “Going Vegan!

  1. One can go vegan, as long as one takes lots of supplements (I know, I did it decades ago). For low impact living, please also renounce tourism, flying (it generates a lot of CO2). All this enraged pacifism goes the wrong way: instead of renouncing aggressivity, one should muster it for the good. And that means cognition. Our species became what it is, from meat consumption. Even cows aren’t vegan: they eat lots of critters with the grass. Eating mussels ain’t a crime. It’s smart.

    1. Patrice, good to see you on these pages again and you are so correct about the need for supplements. Jean and I take a whole fistful of them each morning. Could you say more about “this enraged pacifism”? Or have you written more?

      1. Dear Paul: I am writing in a colossal fashion, and as deeply and more irreverently than ever. But it takes a huge amount of time and energy, this is why I rarely show up around LfD… As what I write is not popular (it doesn’t fascinate most people) it requires a lot of determination to keep on going, of the sort not quite different from a war. A war for truth, the whole truth, nothing but it. Today I destroyed Louis XIV (he deserved it). Most will not understand what it has to do with here now, but I do, so there I go… Cheers!

    2. Hi Patrice… Why did you feel the need to take lots of supplements as a Vegan? I only take two… VitD (because I was diagnosed 14 years ago with Osteoporosis – whilst eating a very high dairy diet and Calcium supplementation, l might add) and the other is Vit B12 which I get from Methylcolbamin (the most absorbable tablet form).

      I am sure you are correct, that small amounts of animal protein are in fact beneficial (and crucial if nothing else is available), and shows how adaptable we can be. But large amounts of animal protein have shown up in health issues like heart disease, diabetes, cancer and one of the most prevalent ailments of the seventeenth to nineteenth century rich landowners, was gout from eating a diet too rich in game and reared meat. The peasants, who could not afford to buy animal protein, and ate vegetables and other crops, were statistically the healthiest. As long as they did not contract any of the prevalent diseases like accident, smallpox, polio or black death, they generally lived into their seventies and eighties.
      Diet has a definite correlation to our health state. That we are able to adapt, doesn’t mean that everything is good for us. Certainly, the current factory farmed animal protein is not good for anything…the animals and humans alike.

      1. Colette, I will reply in more details regarding the many supplements that Jeannie and I take, and why, in a subsequent post later on this week.

        But just catching our breath after a 500 mile round trip for Jeannie to be examined by a leading neurologist at OHSU in Portland yesterday morning.

  2. Good for you for going vegan! You and your visitors may be interested in a blog post I made a few years ago, Where oceans meet, in which I mentioned the film ‘Vegucated‘, The comment thread this generated makes interesting reading: as with so many things, the choice is not as clear as it would seem. I do wish that it were possible to see this kind of information on the goggle box, that’s the only real way of getting this message out.

    1. I have just read that post, and the comments, pendantry. Unfortunately, I don’t have enough data for the video, but I am aware of the issues.

      I am equally aware that veganism is a passionate subject that has cherry picked facts on both sides of the issue (actually several issues, such as ethics, health, environmental impact, scientific knowledge and so on).

      As the advice is still not supported by outright scientific research that proves one way or the other, we are left with the old adage ‘everything in moderation.’ This is the catchall that says, we don’t know what is best to eat, but if you eat too much of one thing, it will kill you. This much is true.

      When hominids first walked the planet, we were like most animals, we roamed freely and ate what nature provided. We didn’t hunt of farm until we began to make more and more tools in response to our copying the animals we observed. We are the best copy-cat species in the whole animal kingdom. This propensity for copy-cat mimickry is responsible for our fashion trends, our foodie trends, our technology trends and so on. We do not, as a species, like to return to former behaviours once we have copied a new one, and we will argue our point to the death of anything that gets in the way.

      It is constant adaptation that has caused population explosion within the human population at the expense of all other life forms.

      This may seem a bit irrational, but we are like a self-destruct weapon. We need to start sorting out where in our genetic makeup, we are going wrong and more importantly, why?

      There are many successful vegans. Not all waste away, pale and become shadows of their former self. Most are also highly compassionate (although I admit that there are a few that are quite venomous to meat eating humans). Vegans tend to be thoughtful people who question their reality and the reality of the World, and the Universe. That is not to say that meat eaters don’t have these qualities, but it can be a fairly accurate to say that in the compassion sweepstakes, you will find more Vegan’s, Vegetarians, Organic (non-factory farmed animals) and environmentally aware people winning over the omnivore general population.

    1. John, to be honest we would need to weigh up the pros and cons. Certainly our present diet is very enjoyable and I don’t miss anything that we were eating before we made the vegan switch.

      1. I understand where you’re coming from. In India/Nepal I didn’t “miss” meat for a second as the available food was so damn good.

  3. Thanks for all this information! I’m vegetarian almost vegan. I need to read the links you provided for a more balance diet. Can you point me to a good source for more information on how much daily per vitamins? I learned 6 months ago my VitD wasn’t going up for a very low 19 because it wasn’t a capsule with any fat base. My fall [Ed. gall] bladder was removed at 23 for medical reasons. So I don’t process food/vitamins the same. I started a VitD in vegetable oil and I’m over 50 now. Any help with vitamins would be great. I’m a carb addict too so I need to get a more balance diet. Thanks again I’m saving this one for future reference. 😊

    1. Debbie, what an interesting response from you! I am hoping those with more experience and knowledge will offer their views because I don’t feel qualified to answer your questions. Was it your gall bladder that was removed when you were 23? (Dreaded auto-correct feature at work!)

      1. Yes gall bladder 😂 darn auto correct! Don’t mean to put you on the spot, just really looking for recommendations on where to research about vitamins. My son worked at GNC for awhile and everything seems to be about the latest “hot topic” thanks for sharing your journey.

    2. Hi Debbie Bugezia,

      I am not a medical expert and so ideally your questions are (as Paul says) are difficult to answer. However, in my experience, most MD’s do not study nutrition adequately and therefore are little qualified to look at how nutrition affects health. There are exceptions; Dr T Colin Campbell, Dr John A McDougal, Dr Essylstein, Dr Mercola… While not all of these are Vegan, they have taken the trouble to study nutrition on a preventative basis. Looking up these people will take you to websites full of vitamin supplementation information.
      Most nutrition can be gained by eating a highly balanced, nutritious diet, but for my research I found two missing.

      Vitamin D supplementation should always be in the Vitamin D3 form and a suggested value is 8,000 IU’s per day (about 50 micrograms if you are in the UK). Yes, it is fat soluble, but if you eat fat based plant sources (I.e. guacamole is made from advocados and very high in fat, and linseed and sesame seeds are also high in Omega 3 fats). Without a gall bladder, you do have to be careful with fat consumption, and you will find the right levels for your own tolerance.

      Vitamin B12 is a nutrient found in soil (animals eat it when they graze and are supplemented when they are factory farmed).
      In 2010, a team of Japanese Researchers developed the best form of oral Vitamin B12 on the market that is absorbable. Methylcolbamin far outperforms Cyanacolbamin, and Hydroxycolbamin for daily consumption, and is less toxic than other forms (the hint is in the name). In Asia, Methylcolbamin is prescribed for diabetics to offset the effects of neuropathies that develop in long term diabetes.
      Methylcolbamin is not available in the UK under the NHS or over counter medications, but it can be ordered on line.
      After two years of taking just 500 micrograms daily myself, I have an optimal B12 blood level.

      Calcium is best absorbed from a bioavailable source such as Kale and other dark leaf vegetables, or nuts like Almonds. The problem with supplementation is that it is from animal sources, or Calcium Carbonate (the rocks made from thousands of tiny shelled sea creatures), neither of which is absorbed properly by the body and cause kidney stones (and gall bladder stones) when too much of it is circulating in the body. The Calcium in plant sources feeds us the best absorbable form, but it cannot be processed I to tablets so must come from diet.

      I wish you well in your search for optimal health.

      1. PS – Dr Michael Greger (author of ‘How not to Die’), is the best MD with free videos on his website for Vegans to watch). His research is ongoing and extensive as he pulls in dietary studies worldwide to give to his readers/subscribers). His website is a great place to search for answers to your questions. https://nutritionfacts.org/

      2. Wow, thank you for taking the time to reply to my comment. I just read your post on your page and your limited use of data. So I really appreciate your time and data use!

        I’ve always been confused about vitamins and good sources to reach out for information. As you know there are tons of resources on the Internet. I’m going to check into the sources you mentioned this week.

        I’ve worked in a hospital network for 37 years but I’m not clinical either. Although I know enough to ask questions, to question a source, and to know that my physician doesn’t always know what’s best for me. Not because they are a bad physician, but because they are not trained to know everything. The Vit D issue I had went on for 6 years with it being so low. A health food store employee knew exactly what I needed to do within 5 minutes of talking to her. But that’s her specialty.

        Thank you again for your time and information. 😊

  4. Having been a vegetarian for probably 25 years or so, I find I feel better health wise. Getting on board with veganism and/or vegetarianism is easier than people realize and the results are astounding. Thanks for sharing this awesome post!

    1. Thank you for your wonderful reply. Yes, Jean had been vegetarian for many years as well but that film did tip her into veganism. Have you thought about becoming vegan at any time?

      1. That was the same with us. But as the film What The Health pointed out is that howsoever the cheese is described (organic, etc.) one has no control over a) what the cow ate and, b) where the feedstock being given to the cow came from. Ergo, there was a measurable risk of chemical contamination plus all the issues of the levels of fat contained in milk and cheese.

      2. I can totally rationalize it, just can’t seem to stop enjoying it. And then there’s sugar which is far harder to avoid than meat/dairy products and much harder to give up. 😉

      3. In the end, it’s a case of weighing it all up! For me and Jeannie demonstrating many of the characteristics of being ‘the wrong side of 65’ and wanting to stay as fit and healthy as we could it was an easy step.

      4. Well a gentleman doesn’t ask a lady her age! That, in turn of course, dates me! Anyway, I was born in 1944 and will be 74 this coming November.

      5. I have to say (as three-year Vegan now), I was addicted to cheese, eating it in rather large quantities. ‘Addiction’ is the operative word here. During my transition, after three weeks cold turkey, I ate a cube of cheese and actually had to ho and get a drink of water and then eat a piece of celery afterwards. While it still had a sort of brain pull of attraction, the actual taste put me off right away… The addiction was broken. I thought milk and dairy were crucial to keep my osteoporosis in check. I had eaten it for years, and taken additional over the counter calcium, magnesium and Vit D2. Instead of keeping osteoporosis at bay, it escalated. Since giving up dairy, and useless supplements, my breathing improved, chronic chest infections disappeared and an acne prone skin cleared. Stomach aches disappeared too. I have not missed dairy (not even dairy chocolate) at all. My osteoporosis saw a 5% improvement on my last check two years ago. I will get another check in six months and hope at least there is stabilization.
        We have been fed a bunch of lies by the food industry, and ultimately, the medical profession have led us astray because they do not receive adequate nutritional training.

  5. Thanks Paul for renewing a subscription to my site… May I ask why you stopped? And please don’t let the justifiably angry essay against Louis XIV I just wrote put you off: I had just read a mainstream article singing Louis’ praises… England was then a much better, because more democratic, place…

  6. Thanks for the repost Paul. I hope more people find the great studies done on nutrition and Veganism. Really, the term ‘Vegan’ has been attributed only to the activists who consider the cruel aspect of an animal protein diet. Many of the nutrition based ‘Vegan’ web sites, are trying very much to re-label the nutrition and health aspects to ‘Plant-based, Whole food diet’ because the name suggests exactly what people should be eating!😊

  7. By the way, I was curious as to whether having an appendix (as opposed to having one removed due to inflammation), would have an effect in processing a vegan diet nutritionally. Apparently, there is no difference. But latest research this year has shown that the appendix is very important in fighting bad gut bacteria. The theory is, that the appendix is a sort of nursery ground for nurturing good bacteria and comes into play crucially when the intestinal tract is irritated by something that interferes with correct digestion and absorption. The good bacteria are sent out after the intestines have had a bout of diarrhea to clear out the bad bacteria. And this seems to be true for all animals that have an appendix.

    More research is required to determine what inflames this organ and why its removal is so necessary in some cases. Certainly, it is not a leftover evolutionary piece of useless organ, but rather one that plays a very important role in our immunity.

    1. Oh, and dogs do not have an appendix…

      https://www.dailydogdiscoveries.com/tag/do-dogs-have-an-appendix/

      But many herbivores do have an appendix.

      I am the only member of my family that has not had my appendix removed. I am not sure why I escaped appendicitis, but one reason might be that even as a child, I would not eat large amounts of animal protein, no matter how long I was made to sit at the table with the admonishment “You’ll sit there until you eat it!” I even tried tactics like putting it in a pocket or throwing it under the table (both highly punished). It is just a question, and one that I can’t answer scientifically, but could it be that we are only designed to eat meat to avoid starvation? When other things are available, should we leave meat off the menu?

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