Food for Thought: The Joys and Benefits of Living Compassionately and Healthfully (In Other Words: Vegan)

I get a lot of questions from both men and women about finding compassionate clothing and shoes made without animal skins, fur, hair, or other body parts(!) - that are both fashionable as well as affordable. Today, I share my thoughts about why it costs a little more to make ethical wares, and I assure you that you don't have to trade fashion for compassion. You can have both. I also explain how Colleen Patrick-Goudreau almost became Alexandra Goudrick. Tune in to find out what the heck I'm talking about!

Thanks to today's podcast sponsors: (free resources for opting out of animal dissection in schools) (fashionable, economical, ethical shoes for women) (your go-to online store for vegan meats and jerky)



My love of film began when I was very young and my parents took me to the movies every Friday night. Granted, some of the films I saw were incredibly inappropriate for my age, but I'll always be grateful for seeing Benji in the theatre when I was 6 years old. I almost didn't make it through for all the tears I cried, but it is truly one of my earliest memories of realizing how empathic I am. If someone else is suffering, I can't help but suffer, too - and so we have the beginning of my animal advocacy. Also, some great callers with great questions for how to live compassionately and healthfully; i.e. vegan.

Thank you to our sponsors:

Animalearn -

V-Dog -

eCornell Center for Nutrition Studies -


Music featured:

"Across the Lake" by Gosta Berling -


In today's episode, I discuss the origins of the word "animal," whose root word means "soul" - something humans are in danger of losing if we keep denying non-human animals theirs. Thanks to today's sponsors:,, & I also share the origins of other animal-related words (beast, creature, brute, brute and savage) and answer your questions and calls: one being from a student whose science teacher challenges her about animal issues in the middle of class and another being from a woman who wants advice for discarding her wool- and lambskin-lined boots. Finally, there's a question about the difference between Vitamin D2 and D3 - and yet another about what I feed my cats (for the umpteenth time: meat!).

Thanks to today's sponsors:

*22DaysNutrition - protein and energy bars and powder -

*Animal Learn, the education division of AAVS -

*Field Roast, the makers of artisan vegan meat -

In this episode, I share my experience sleeping in my 20th county in California (Napa), booking an Air B&B for the first time, eating vegan in Napa Country (particularly in the towns of Napa and Helena), and I answer such questions as "How do you respond to folks who say 'it must be hard to be vegan' as you stand there with a plate of carrots at a fancy wedding dinner?" and "How can I find vegan antibacterial soap" and "How do I humanely discourage roaches from taking up residence in my home?" Check out all this - and more - in today's episode...sponsored by - vegan meats galore!

In today's episode, I share my recommendations for some kitchen design elements that might be helpful to you whether you're remodeling or not, and I answer several of your questions, including how to respond to people who say "it must be hard to be vegan," "I had a great weekend hunting," and "why don't animal advocates spend their time taking care of human issues instead of animal issues?" The last one hits a particularly raw nerve for me, and I spend a chunk of the episode demonstrating how animal issues touch every other social justice issue and how the problem isn't that there are people trying to make the world a more compassionate place; the problem is that there are so many people doing nothing at all. Please enjoy, share, and comment!

Thanks to all of the listener sponsors, as well as and, for making this episode possible.

Join me for today's episode as I tell the story of intervening when I found a sick raccoon while traveling and as I answer questions related to my favorite teas, to changing the barometer by which we measure all things vegan, and to coming to terms with the fact that we can't please everyone when trying to do good. An emailer in the "What Would Colleen Do?" segment asked how to handle the "vegan police" who criticize her for organizing dinner meet-ups at non-vegan restaurants.

Today's Tweetables:

"One life matters - especially to the one whose life it is." ~Colleen Patrick-Goudreau #foodforthought

"Effective leaders do their best to make reasonable, mindful decisions, but they also know they can’t please everyone." ~Colleen Patrick-Goudreau #foodforthought

Eight years. Eight years of food for thought! In celebration of the eight-year anniversary of the podcast, I feature the letters of listeners who have been transformed by “Food for Thought.” The stories are as diverse as the listeners and reflect varied ages and backgrounds, but they all share common threads of hope, transformation, and compassion. I hope you are as moved by the letters as I am humbled by them. If you ever once thought that “people don’t change,” then you’re in for quite a treat. I warn you: there are 2 hours and 15 minutes of the love.

Direct download: Love_Letters_from_2013_final.mp3
Category:general -- posted at: 5:15 PM

In today's episode, I relate my interaction with a non-vegan neighbor about whether it's ever possible to keep and kill animals "humanely," and I talk to a couple listeners about how best to represent veganism with non-vegan, animal-loving co-workers and colleagues. The center of this episode, however, is my response to a woman who wrote to me to ask how I can help her reconcile her embarrassment about being vegan and overweight. Not surprisingly, I have an opinion. If you'd like to hear it, take a listen. If you like what you hear, please share it.

Join me today as I talk about the importance of knowing where we end and another person begins, which is also today's tweetable! This theme runs through my week's re-cap, as well as in this episode's emails and phone calls. In our segment, Verbal Vivisection, I dissect some positive animal idioms, such as "bee's knees" and "busy as a bee" and relatedly recite the first 14 lines of Chaucer's Canterbury Tales in Middle English!

Join me today as I talk about my goal of sleeping in every county in California, about writing my next cookbook, and about my experience demystifying “vegan food” with a bed-and-breakfast proprietor. This episode is also the first in which I incorporate your phone calls, which include a question about living with a non-vegan husband, a question about communicating with family about vegan pregnancy, and one about talking about veganism in the most effective, compassionate way. I wrap up the episode with The Compassionate Life segment in which I establish that the foundation of veganism is compassion - from Pythagoras all the way to today. Today’s Tweetable: “When you speak to the highest in people, they respond with the highest that’s in them.”