Nitrates, nitrites, nitrosamines – What are the Facts?

Processed meats such as hot dogs, ham, bacon and salami contain many proven cancer-causing compounds.  This has been known for many years.  But people are still eating them – even people who otherwise seem to care about their health.

In this article I hope to lift the lid on just how dangerous these products are, and in doing so, cut through the uncertainty about nitrites, nitrates and nitrosamines – which are bad and which are good.

The missing key to consistent weight control

There is a myth in the health world that goes something like this:

“If you only eat healthy foods, and leave out the other categories of food that are not healthy, you can eat all of the healthy foods you like and you will reach a normal weight.”

All diets have a marketing gimmick.  But for 99% of them, a missing key has been left out – a practice that must be learned in order to attain and maintain a normal weight.

In this post I talk about the lost key to weight control.

A Vegetarian in Japan

Last year I spent a week in Japan: a day in Tokyo, and 5 days in a country town by a ski resort 6 hours’ drive west of Tokyo.  We were celebrating my 50th birthday and this was my celebration of choice – and what a super-fabulous choice it turned out to be!

My Favourite Plant-Based Recipe Resources

If you didn’t grow up in a vegetarian family, learning to cook whole food plant-based meals can be quite a challenge at first.  You have to find foods that are actually plant-based (not laden with oils and dairy), that meet the taste criteria, that fill you up enough and that don’t take all day to prepare.  And for some of us – we have no one to ask advice from – just the Internet.

In this post I list four of my most relied upon recipe blogs/books and where to find oil-free recipes.  I hope you will find something on my list of tried and tested resources to add to your own growing list of favourites.

Where I get my Iron

I don’t eat red meat, and I haven’t for nearly 3 years.  I don’t eat other animal foods either, but recent blood tests I ordered to measure how my nutritional plan was working for me showed that not only were my blood iron levels excellent, but I also had good iron storage levels (which can be lower in vegans).

Many people are iron deficient.  It’s the most common nutritional deficiency in the world.  Most people I’ve spoken to who find they are anaemic were committed meat eaters at the time they become iron-deficient.  They can’t understand why this happened since they regularly eat iron-rich red meat.

I thought some of you may like to know where I get enough iron to stay full of beans.

How to Avoid Weight Gain while Traveling

Most people put on weight while travelling.  Or if not while actually on the road (or air) then within  couple of weeks of getting home.

If you have one holiday every year or less often, this may be of little concern to you.  However, for many of us, it becomes a big concern as we rapidly undo the self discipline of many many months and have to spend another 3 – 4 months getting back to where we were before we went away.

In this article I share what I’ve learned to maintain weight when traveling.

A ‘Traditional’ Diet – Good or Bad?

In our fast-paced world, as we look around us we see so many people are sick.  It is easy to romanticise about the past and imagine, in a simpler, slower world, that people weren’t as sick.

If this seems a little naive to you, don’t laugh; this is the typical thinking of most people.  Whole books have been written glorifying the diets of our ancestors of only 100 – 150 years ago, and whole dietary movements are based upon imagined views of what our ancestors back at the dawn of human history apparently ate or did not eat.  Both opinions believe a more ‘traditional’ diet will produce better health.

Here are some facts about traditional diets for you to chew on:

Why I Rarely Eat Fish

Fish has been marketed as a health food for a long time.  Its fat contains much Omega 3 fat – more than any other food on the planet per serve.

Many health issues arise when people are short on Omega 3 fats (also called DHA and EPA).

A Vegan in Scandinavia

I recently (May 2015) returned from a whirlwind 10 day tour around some parts of Scandinavia, a wondrous part of the world.

As a whole-food vegan,  I try to avoid refined foods, vegan or not.  In Scandinavia I was able to eat mostly wholefood as well as vegan – but it took some thought.  Here are my experiences as a vegan traveling in Sweden, Denmark and Norway.