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In Her Vegan Shoes

“Hear music, see beautiful colours,
Smell the autumn breeze of falling flowers.”

Make believe you’re a tiny bug.
Act out what is true about your world.
Tell us what you see,
Tell us what you hear,
Tell us what you smell, touch, and taste,
Which things are pleasant? unpleasant?

– – A powerful character appears on stage,
Sit quietly and listen a few,
To sturdy leather souls soles laid to rest in its place,
Extraordinary lives the fabric that holds the glue,
Stiff with muddy neglect.

Breathe.
Hear music, see beautiful colours,
Smell the autumn breeze of falling flowers.
Your senses now civilized to truth,
The earth a more comfortable place to walk on,
No longer the black sheep’s eyes covered too blind to see,
Swirling lines of red flowing through hands,
Carved with one point of view.

Smile.
A new day is part of life’s eternal cycle,
In this big world, spinning around in space,
A tug-of-war with words and ideals,
Shrink until they are merely dots in the distance,
Scattered in grooves on the wind that pollinate,
Man’s heart away from nature,
Dreaming of lives they wish to savour.

– – In case you missed it, also read “Fruitful Love” in Cooking Green Goodness Magazine’s Love, Cho-Cho and Perfect Imperfections issue. Fruitful Love uplifts one’s condition. Fruitful Love speaks to actions we take to nourish ourselves and powerfully support our health. Know that you have far more power over your well-being and impact in life than you might give yourself credit for. Click HERE to read more.

Disclosure: The TULIPE Booties featured in the above video was gifted by Call It Spring. All my opinions on Call It Spring’s products are my own. Thank you for supporting the sponsors that encourage this magazine’s work and creativity, and that keep us motivated to share with you latest news and developments in veganism, such as the different factors that afford us the opportunity to enjoy the many substitutes available for all the animal products that even non-vegans enjoy.

Known and loved for its on- trend, affordable shoes and accessories, Call It Spring is now making vegan accessible. This global footwear and accessories brand has gone fully vegan! Why is this important? Customers can now shop for the PETA-Approved Vegan products online and at over 400 stores globally that are entirely free from animal materials or derivatives. Call It Spring shoes, bags and accessories are now entirely free from animal skins, feathers, fur, hair, wool fibres, shells, real silk, and animal-based adhesives or components. Click HERE for more details.

Video by Akhil Kamble, A.K. Renegade Studios akrenegade.com. Unauthorized use or distribution of this content without proper credit is prohibited.

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Let’s Change the Cancer Stats with These 3 Dietary Strategies

According to the latest Canadian data, 1 in 2 people will develop cancer during their lifetime. Amanda Li, M.Ap.Nutr., RD, teaches strategies to stay healthy while relishing every bite.

Our bodies are incredible machines that have the capability to digest foods, to fight off disease, and to detoxify on its own. However, lifestyle factors including lack of sleep, poor nutrition, low activity, and exposure to environmental toxins can put a toil on the body’s ability to function optimally. According to the World Cancer Research Fund, about 30% of all cancers are directly related to dietary habits, which can reach up to 70% in the case of cancers related to the digestive system. Colorectal cancer is the second leading cause of cancer deaths in Canada and affects more than 26,000 Canadians a year. This number is staggering, but we as individuals have the power to make changes to our lifestyle to reduce our risk of developing cancer in our lifetime.

Let’s not waste anymore time, and dive into 3 dietary recommendations to help reduce your risk starting today!

#1 – Eat a diet rich in a variety of vegetables and fruits.

As the saying goes, “Variety is the very spice of life, that gives it all its flavor!” No one food contains all the anti-cancer molecules that can prevent cancer, so it is important to incorporate a wide range of nutrient-dense foods into our daily diet to increase the protective effect. Strive to create a rainbow effect on your dinner plate!

#2 – Limit your consumption of alcohol and sugar sweetened drinks.

There is strong evidence to suggest that excess alcohol consumption increases your risk of developing several types of cancer, including colorectal, mouth, liver, and breast cancers. Even red wine, a beverage containing thousands of phytochemicals including resveratrol should be enjoyed in moderation. For women this means 1 drink per day, and men should not exceed 2 drinks per day. As a reference, a drink is defined as 12 oz. beer, 1.5 oz. of spirits and 5 oz. of wine. Make water – still or bubbly – your drink of choice!

#3 – Eat fewer highly processed food products.

A good way to ensure for this is cooking at home more! No need to get complicated here; let the ingredients speak for themselves! To help you get started, I have included a recipe that exemplifies how easy it can be to start incorporating these 3 dietary habits!

Get the Recipe! Lentil Goji Berry Buckwheat Pilaf

The star ingredients in this pilaf are the buckwheat and goji berries! Buckwheat is a delicious underutilized whole-grain that can be prepared just like plain ol’ rice, but packed with more bioactive anti-cancer compounds including vitamin E, selenium, and lignans! The best part is that buckwheat has a wonderfully nutty and earthy flavour that pairs well with sweeter ingredients such as goji berries! Goji berries are a rich source of antioxidants such as vitamin C and A which help protect your body’s cells from damage caused by free radicals. Make a large batch of this pilaf at the start of the week so you have a scrumptious grab and go meal for the busy workweek ahead! When you are prepared, you are setting yourself up for success!

Cancer is the number one cause of death in majority of industrialized countries, and affects not only the individual with cancer but has a tremendous ripple effect. We only have one body, and it is up to us to take charge of our health because no one else we do that for us! Stay healthy my friend, and until next time, relish every bite.

Amanda Li, M.Ap.Nutr., RD & Founder Wellness Simplified | wsimplified.com | Amanda brings together her dietetic experience and working in a professional kitchen setting to create a nutrition coaching practice that is food-centric and grounded in teaching individuals a basic life skill – nourishing their body, mind and soul.

– – In case you missed it, also read 5 Habits That May Increase Your Risk For Pre-Diabetes by Amanda Li, in the A Season Unapologetic issue of Cooking Green Goodness Magazine. See Your Health & Wellness (page 6).

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© Photography by Sabine Alphonsine | See Beetroot Hummus

The Vegan Pantry: What Does An Everyday Vegan Eat?

“As we talked of freedom and justice one day for all, we sat down to steaks. I am eating misery, I thought, as I took the first bite. And spit it out.” Alice Walker

Whether you are already vegan or simply vegan curious, interests in exploring the incredible range of plant-based foods has never been more popular. This article takes a look at the vegan pantry – answering the question, “what does an everyday vegan eat?”

WHAT IS A VEGAN DIET?

There are many ways to embrace vegan living. Veganism is a way of living which seeks to exclude all animal products, and as far as is possible and practicable, all forms of exploitation of, and cruelty to, animals for food, clothing or any other purpose. You’ll find that the one thing in common among vegans is an entirely plant-based diet avoiding all animal foods such as meat (including seafood and insects), eggs, dairy, honey and gelatin.

For anyone considering making the transition to a plant-based diet, it is a good idea to make gradual changes that are more likely to be sustainable. Try introducing one or two vegan meals each week, then progressing onto a couple of vegan days. When thinking about changing your eating habits, it’s also important to make sensible decisions and consider how to balance what you eat to include a variety of foods that provide essential nutrients, such as iron, protein, vitamins, minerals, omega-3 fatty acids, fibre and carbohydrates. Be adventurous, make good quality food choices, plan well and follow a sensible approach to meet your dietary needs. It is always a good idea to consult a nutritionist, dietitian, or medical practitioner about changes in diet.

Click HERE to read A Quick Vegan Guide: Functions and Food Sources of Vitamins

THE VEGAN PANTRY AT A GLANCE

The vegan pantry is filled with a variety of nutrient-rich, health-promoting plant foods: Fruits, grains, berries, leaves, roots, legumes, flowers, nuts and seeds. Developments in veganism also afford us the opportunity to enjoy the many substitutes available for all the animal products that even non-vegans enjoy like delicious cheeses, butters (including fruit butters), spreads, sweeteners, sauces and condiments.

Probiotics pickles, sauerkraut, kimchi, kefir, miso, tempeh, kombucha

Prebiotics oats, barley, flaxseeds, legumes, green vegetables (including dandelion greens, leeks, asparagus), apples, bananas

Nutritional Powders matcha, acai, raw cacao, mesquite, moringa

Legumes Legumes (or pulses) are an affordable low-fat, low calorie source of high quality protein that contributes to good nutrition and health. As you begin to move the pendulum in the other direction and slowly move away from animal protein, you will find that these highly “satiating” foods are worth embracing as part of a healthy and sustainable diet. Most legumes also contain significant amounts of fiber and resistant starch found only in plant foods. Fiber, and resistant starch, helps to regulate bowels and remove the toxins in our bodies. Almost all varieties of legumes provide iron, zinc and B vitamins, among many other nutrients.

This group of foods comprises of soybeans, peanuts, fresh peas, and fresh beans. Pulses are dry beans, dry peas, chickpeas, and lentils. Beans boast important assets: For one thing, they’re easily stored and almost never go bad. Because they are dried, their shelf life is more or less unlimited. Second, there’s a lot you can do with beans. To cook them, is in some ways the simplest part of this discussion. Beans are always cooked in liquid, and that liquid is usually water. Most beans double or even triple their bulk during cooking; that is, 1 cup of dried beans yields at least 2 cups of cooked beans.

Root Vegetables Simply put, a root vegetable is one where the root of the plant is eaten. They keep for long periods of time (several months if stored properly), and are usually harvested in the fall. The list of root vegetables include: yams; sweet potato; colourful beets and carrots; batata; parsnip; turnip; radish; garlic; onion; shallots; ginger; arrowroot; cassava (the root from which tapioca is made); fennel; rutabaga and turmeric.

A yam is very bland, and when cooked, very dry. It is often used in hearty stews that contain plenty of liquid, wherever you’d use potatoes. In Jamaica, yellow yam is a popular side served with sautéed greens such as callaloo. Yam is also popularly used in soups.

Parsnips are sweeter than even carrots with a somewhat nutty taste. Their highest and best use is pureed, but they’re also wonderful mixed with other vegetables in a roasting pan. When preparing parsnip, treat it as you would a carrot. You’ll know it’s done cooking when tender enough to easily pierce with a thin-bladed knife or a skewer. Overcooking makes parsnips mushy.

Beets are crunchy, sweet, delicious, and can be eaten raw! Some varieties of beets are sweet enough to be used to make sugar. They’re also quite simple to prepare. One good indication of freshness is the presence of greens, which can be cooked separately like chard. Juice together, 2 medium beets, 3 medium carrots and 2 apples for a natural, energizing jolt. Scrub well before cooking.

Seeds chia, sunflower, sesame, linseeds, pepitas, unhulled/hulled tahini

Let’s not forget quinoa [keen-wah, kee-noh-uh]. Quinoa is a tasty, easy-to-cook seed. It’s also one of the few foods in the plant world that’s a complete protein; earning it a coveted spot among vegans and vegetarians for its nutritional importance. Quinoa varies in intensity of flavour and in colour (from pale beige to red, to black). Handled correctly, quinoa cooks up light and fluffy. For hot cooked quinoa, the ratio of quinoa to water is usually 1:2 – that’s one portion of uncooked quinoa to two portions of liquid.

Click HERE to read How to Cook Quinoa

Soy Products tempeh, tofu, miso

Nuts almonds, cashews, pecans, walnuts, peanuts, macadamias, pistachios

Grains brown rice, black rice, cornmeal, barley, oat, freekeh, couscous, millet, burghul

Flours coconut, chickpea, spelt, rice, buckwheat

Sea Vegetables seaweed/nori, spirulina, wakami, kelp, kombu

Sauces and Condiments tamari, Worcestershire, vinegars, mustards, pesto sauces

Sauces serve to moisten food, to enhance it, to complement it; or they may be the most interesting aspect of a given dish. There are countless simple vegan sauces that can be whipped together in a flash to serve as dips, with vegetable burgers, salads, desserts, or anything that needs a flavour boost!

Butters and Spreads cashew, peanut, almond, tahini, hummus

Plant Milks almond milk, coconut milk, soy milk, oat milk, cashew milk, rice milk

Cheese Feel good about this dairy-free indulgence! Vegan cheese can be made from seeds, and nuts such as cashew, almond, and pine nuts, and may be a good source of protein.

Sweeteners maple syrup, agave syrup, cane sugar, coconut sugar, fruit butters, dates (blended)

Oils olive oils, coconut oil, grapeseed oil, avocado oil

Spices and Herbs Keep a ready supply of spices and herbs (fresh or dried) on hand. Most common culinary herbs are classified as pungent. Pungent herbs awaken the senses and get things moving. They are warming, spicy, and have become part of culinary tradition because they not only taste good but also support one’s health. Examples of pungent herbs include: black pepper, cayenne, cinnamon, fennel, garlic, ginger, holy basil, lavender, mustard, nutmeg, parsley, peppermint, rosemary, sage, thyme, and turmeric.

Vegan Dark Chocolate Most popular chocolate candies have too much sugar and not nearly enough cacao content to be supportive of health. One of the best ways to consume chocolate for your health is to eat dark   chocolate that has a minimum of 70% cacao. High quality chocolate bars will list the cacao content on the front label. Dark chocolate may be an acquired taste – takes getting used to for most. Once you prefer it though, there’s no going back.

The healthiest way to include cacao in your diet is to skip products with sugar entirely and use 100% cacao. Cacao nibs, cacao powder, and 100% cacao bars are readily available for purchase.  Whenever possible, buy organic chocolate that has been certified fair trade.

Let’s keep in touch! You can also find Cooking Green Goodness Magazine on:

Instagram; see beautiful imagery of cooking behind the scenes, mini recipes, fitness Fridays, and more.

Twitter; tweeting about all things food and new discoveries.

Facebook; is the page sharing all things green and how to cook them delicious.

SUBSCRIBE and Follow.

© Photography by Eartha Lowe