Monday, February 21, 2005

Children Harmed by Poor Nutrition not Vegan Diets says Top Nutritionist

Children Harmed by Poor Nutrition not Vegan Diets says Top Nutritionist from The Food Doctor.

Another story attacking vegan diets rather than poor nutrition has proven the need for much more work educating health professionals who have such a limited knowledge of basic nutrition.

Lindsay Allen, of the US Agricultural Research Service, attacked vegan parents and falsely suggested that Animal source foods have some essential nutrients not found anywhere else, at a Washington science conference.
"There's absolutely no question that it's unethical for parents to bring up their children as strict vegans," she said at the American Association for the Advancement of Science meeting.

Years and years of lobbying and propaganda by the meat and dairy industry still fly in the face of evidence that proves a vegan diet can be one of the healthiest around and even add an extra 10 years of healthy living to the life of an average westerner.
There are hundreds of studies that prove the average meat eater would benefit greatly from moving towards a vegan diet.

The American Dietetic Association agree “Well-planned vegan diets are appropriate for all stages of the life cycle”

See full abstract - Position of The American Dietetic Association on Vegan Diets
"Well-planned vegan and other types of vegetarian diets are appropriate for all stages of the life cycle, including during pregnancy, lactation, infancy, childhood, and adolescence. Vegetarian diets offer a number of nutritional benefits, including lower levels of saturated fat, cholesterol, and animal protein as well as higher levels of carbohydrates, fiber, magnesium, potassium, folate, and antioxidants such as vitamins C and E and phytochemicals."

The story featured by The BBC follows other misleading stories blaming vegan diets rather than poor nutrition. One story claimed veganism was responsible for a rise in rickets rather than a lack of sunshine and another badly researched story claimed “vegan parents” had killed their baby by feeding it nothing but cod liver oil (neither vegans nor vegetarians eat fish)
Top vegetarian nutrition expert Yvonne Bishop-Weston BSc Dip ION says ”the problem is there are good and bad possibilities with every diet it is not the vegan diet that is to blame it’s simply poor nutrition – all the key nutrients are easily available in a vegan diet”
“Some health professionals will claim that vegetarian women have low iron when the truth is MOST women have low iron levels. The western diets generally, not vegan diets, are often low in iron, selenium, zinc, magnesium, vitamin c, vitamin B12 or essential fats such as omega 3”
Nutrition Consultant and author Yvonne Bishop-Weston BSc Dip ION won an award for her research on “Essential Fatty Acid Status in Vegan Women and Implications in Pregnancy”

She says that “big baby sizes often aren’t the best marker for long term health that they are thought to be.”

Bishop says “There’s no reason why with a bit of planning and ensuring a good sources of essential fats, especially omega 3, that vegan babies can’t grow up to be among the healthiest people on the planet. There is still some research needed on cognitive function to prove this to the sceptics but the evidence is already stacked up.”

BBC Story

Nutrition Expert – specialist in vegetarian and vegan diets

Healthy and Nutritious Vegan Recipes in New Vegan Cookbook by Hamlyn

Foods For Life

Vegan Nutrition by The Vegan Sociey

Not healthy? We challenge you to Spot The Vegan

Tuesday, February 15, 2005

UK McDonald's 'McLibel' Case "Not Fair" rules European Court

Yahoo! News - British Activists Hail Court Ruling in 'McLibel' Case: "STRASBOURG, France (Reuters) - Two Britons libeled by U.S. fast food chain McDonald's (after the longest court case in English legal history) did not have a fair trial, the European Court of Human Rights ruled Tuesday. "

This was a landmark case and it led to the changes going on at McDonalds which has been spurred on by books such as Fast Food Nation and the Award Winning Film "Supersize me"

Many more people now know the truth about McDonalds - lots more work to be done though....

Artist Geoff Francis looks for home for Elephant

Art for Ark Sake: "�Give an Elephant a Home, only a generous heart & spare wall space needed��
Artist Geoff Francis is donating the proceeds from all sales of artwork in 2005 to animals and wildlife conservation. More than 500 paintings from his private collection will be made available throughout the year, including his very popular abstracts and many early works celebrating and questioning our relationship with animals and the planet."


Friday, February 11, 2005

All future Mercedes-Benz models will be available with a VEGAN option

Dr. Alka Chandna 757-622-7382

Detroit —Vegetarian South Asians will be pleased to learn that top luxury automaker Mercedes-Benz informed People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals (PETA) that all future Mercedes-Benz models will be available with a leather-free option either at the dealership or via special order in all markets. It takes four cows to make the leather interior for one Mercedes, and the company’s announcement follows PETA’s consumer-driven campaign to pressure Mercedes to offer alternatives to a leather interior.

Wednesday, February 09, 2005

Anti Cancer Carrots?

Worldwide Vegetarian And Vegan News

Chemical in carrot keeps cancer at bay
Source: Daily Telegraph
Date: 09/02/2005

It has emerged that scientists at the University of Newcastle upon Tyne and the Danish Institute of Agricultural Sciences believe from studies that a chemical found in carrots, falcarinol, may reduce the risk of cancer. Scientists tested food supplements containing the chemical on rats with pre-cancerous tumours, discovering that it reduced the development of tumours by a third. The chemical is also present in other carrot-related vegetables, as well as ginseng.

A Cookbook to change the world?

The Naked Vegetarian

Maybe this is just what the world has been waiting for - a vegan cookbook by a major publisher, in bookshops everywhere with the most delicious vegan recipes most people have ever tasted.

Doing quite well on , being well recieved by the UK press, just waiting to see what the US Press thinks as it creeps up the charts on

Please won't you buy me a Mercedes Benz

Worldwide Vegetarian And Vegan News

Mercedes Benz have announced (UK Daily Mail 8/2/05) that they can provide vegan versions of their top of the range cars.

They follow Ford and Toyota who first marketed their new more environmentally friendly cars to vegans in 2004.

Car PR guy said that " Vegans represented the epicentre, the bulls eye of their target audience"

Veganism Has Changed Forever.

With a new bestselling vegan Cookbook out by Hamlyn set to change the way people think of vegan food and thus the solutions offered by a vegan lifestyle we examine the question -

Is veganism the optimum nutrition of the future?

Healthy veganism has never been so comparatively good for you, so easily available, so delicious and so popular. The Vegan Society have seen a massive rise in popularity during their Diamond Jubilee as they celebrate 60 years since Donald Watson first created the word vegan (from the beginning and end of vegetarian) and founded the educational charity.

Books such as The Animal Free Shopper and Plant Based Nutrition and Health have been published, new studies commissioned, new initiatives for chefs started, new products such as vegan fishless smoked salmon created and there’s been celebrations at events all over the world.
The national newspapers, particularly the UK Guardian have featured stories warning about the unsustainability of the present system of things. Not only are modern meat and dairy production methods threatening human health they are threatening the planet with devastating consequences. If the emerging cultures follow in our footsteps the results will be catastrophic.

Looking at The Facts

The American Dietetic Association and Dietitians of Canada agree that well planned vegan diets are a great idea. They issued a report to clarify their position on Vegetarian and Vegan diets in June 2003.* J Am Diet Assoc. 2003;103:748-765.
The paper reviewed the latest scientific data related to key nutrients for vegetarians, including protein, iron, zinc, calcium, vitamin D, riboflavin, vitamin B-12, vitamin A, n-3 fatty acids, and iodine. They concluded ‘A vegetarian, including vegan, diet can meet current recommendations for all of these nutrients. In some cases, use of fortified foods or supplements can be helpful in meeting recommendations for individual nutrients.’
‘Well-planned vegan and other types of vegetarian diets are appropriate for all stages of the life cycle, including during pregnancy, lactation, infancy, childhood, and adolescence. Vegetarian diets offer a number of nutritional benefits, including lower levels of saturated fat, cholesterol, and animal protein as well as higher levels of carbohydrates, fiber, magnesium, potassium, folate, and antioxidants such as vitamins C and E and phytochemicals. Vegetarians have been reported to have lower body mass indices than non-vegetarians, as well as lower rates of death from ischemic heart disease; vegetarians also show lower blood cholesterol levels; lower blood pressure; and lower rates of hypertension, type 2 diabetes, and prostate and colon cancer.’
Their advice to Health professionals is “Dietetics professionals have a responsibility to support and encourage those who express an interest in consuming a vegetarian diet.”

So what attracts people to veganism?

The ADA found that “Common reasons for choosing a vegetarian diet include health considerations, concern for the environment, and animal welfare factors. “ Also “economic reasons, ethical considerations, world hunger issues, and religious beliefs.”
The Vegetarian Society experience is that the biggest percentage (over 40%) say they were vegetarian for health reasons. With the rest divided between animal welfare and the environment – a minority cited not liking the taste of meat as a reason.
This is somewhat ironic considering many vegetarians merely substitute meat with other saturated fat rich animal products such as cheese. Many meals are based around starchy simple carbohydrates rather than complex carbs and are often protein poor.
Amongst members of The Vegan Society a much higher percentage cite animal welfare and the environment for adopting a purely plant based diet. Health is more often a secondary concern rather than a primary one for vegans. Many vegans typically benefit from a reduction in saturated fats from animal products such as dairy and increased intake of phyto-nutrients from plant foods. However they often still consume undesirable amounts of hydrogenated fats from convenience vegan foods (such as the infamous Holland & Barrett vegan porkless pie) or inhibit their intake of essential Omega 3 by consuming too much Omega 6 rich sunflower oil found in vegan staples such as shop bought hummus. Like the vegetarians many vegans also typically consume white pasta/rice high simple carbohydrate meals with some kind of sauce on vegetables. There are also a surprising number of vegans who smoke and drink heavily
Despite these often less than optimum diets, in dietary analysis studies vegans are always at least comparable to healthy eaters and vegetarians and many studies suggest they are healthier.
The Vegan Society maintains that providing Vegans ensure adequate sources of complete protein, green leafy vegetables, vitamin B12 and maintain a balance of EFA’s there is no reason why they can’t avoid many of the major killers of the 21st century identified by The World Health Organisation.

Nutritious and delicious

In her new cookbook Vegan by Hamlyn (ISBN 0600609154) city-based nutrition therapist Yvonne Bishop-Weston BSc Dip ION MBANT says ‘Far from being difficult or extreme, veganism is easy, straightforward and delicious – a great way to achieve optimum health and a clearer conscience.’ She clarifies all the important vegan sources of all the nutrients that you need to earn you above average health.
‘People are taking meat and dairy out of their diets without fully understanding what they need to replace them with so from a health perspective that’s what we have focused on.” However she’s quick to point out “it’s not a preachy health book”

Extra ten years of healthy living?

In Plant Based Nutrition and Health (ISBN 0907337279) by Stephen Walsh PhD he gets far deeper into veganism with recommendations backed up with over 50 pages of references based on human studies. “No use has been made of any information obtained by harming animals and I regard such procedures as both unethical and irrelevant to recommendations for humans.” He claims that the full potential of plant foods is largely untapped and the right choices can add ten years of healthy living to your life.

New breed of vegans

Books such as these and better choice in the shops and in restaurants have attracted new people to veganism who are attracted by the health benefits rather than just the ethics.
These new vegans refuse to settle for second best – they want flavour, value for money and they are not prepared to compromise their family’s health for their beliefs. They have looked at the facts and won’t be brushed off with a dismissive misinformed health professional telling them that they need to have cow’s milk to get calcium or meat to get iron and protein.
Even the growing number of ‘Flexitarians’ who have mainly vegan diets but occasionally eat a little organic meat or fish mean that GP’s and dieticians will need to keep abreast of all the latest facts rather than just settling comfortably for what they read in advertorials and food industry sponsored literature.

To help Doctors keep fully informed there is a health section on with all the latest health news. The Vegan Society think the Government is spot on to encourage the eating of more fruit and vegetables in their “Just Eat More (fruit and veg) “ Campaign that kicked off Autumn 2004. “We’ve been encouraging people to eat more fruit and vegetables for 60 years” says one spokesman.

Treat the Cause not the Symptom

Almost every day now there is another report that verifies the route to optimum health may be not in expensive designer drugs but in better, more nutritious diets.
A study published in BMC Medicine suggests that cannabis could protect against viruses that lie dormant in the body and cause cancer. (The Times 15/09/2004)

A carotenoid found abundantly in spinach could help the body fight prostate cancer, according to new findings on neoxanthin from scientists in Japan. ( 09/09/2004)Scientists from the US department for agriculture led by Agnes Rimando suggested that eating blueberries might help prevent clogged arteries, heart disease and obesity.(The Guardian 24/8)

In a study of middle-aged men, high intake of linoleic acid, an unsaturated fatty acid found in certain plants and vegetables, seemed to lower the risk of prostate and other cancers, Finnish researchers report. (Reuters 24/8)
New trials in the pipeline to test curcumin on humans for treating symptoms of cystic fibrosis and grapefruit extract (the great anti candida treatment) being used to destroy MRSA. ( 17/8)

Scientists in Israel have found that pomegranate juice slows down the damage caused by cholesterol, reduces blood pressure and more than doubles the levels of antioxidants in the blood. According to the American Association for Cancer research, pomegranate extract helps to fight skin cancer and scientists in Holland have tested pure pomegranate seed oil on breast cancer patients. It is also claimed that drinking a daily glass of pomegranate juice can help to protect unborn babies, as it contains the recommended daily allowance of folic acid. (Daily Mirror 29/7)

A two-year study in Denmark has found that drinking two glasses of soy milk a day could protect post-menopausal women suffering from osteoporosis from developing lumbar spine bone loss. The researchers say that many women have been looking for alternative treatments following adverse press coverage of HRT. (Daily Mail 27/7)

(Maverick) Professor Jane Plant says there is strong evidence that dairy products promote breast cancer in women and prostate cancer in men. Speaking at a lecture on diet and cancer, she said: "My advice is don't have any dairy products in any form whatsoever. Just cut them out completely." (Press Association 17/3)

With headlines like these it’s no wonder more and more people are being drawn to veganism and clear that health professionals need to be very sure of their facts before just repeating what they hear from the British Nutrition Foundation and using the BNF’s “balanced plate” as a gospel guide to optimum health.

Tony Bishop-Weston Foods For Life