Food for Thought: The Joys and Benefits of Living Vegan

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October 2006
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I've heard every excuse in the book for eating animals, but I've yet to hear a convincing reason. The consumption of meat, dairy, and eggs is so ritualized, rationalized, disguised, and romanticized that an entirely new group of people has emerged: the "excuse-itarians." These are the people who spend enormous amounts of time and energy romanticizing the consumption of animal products and who have become pseudo-celebrities because of it. The rise in popularity of such people reminds me of the Hans Christian Andersen fable, "The Emperor Has No Clothes," because nobody is saying what's true. (The main part of this podcast is really only 13 minutes, but it's extended to 20 because of my reading of the fairy tale.)

Direct download: excuseitarians.mp3
Category:Health, Society & Culture, Fitness & Nutrition, News & Politics -- posted at: 1:41am PST
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I have yet to meet a non-vegetarian who didn't care about the treatment of animals raised and killed for human consumption, and I have yet to meet a non-vegetarian who didn't declare that they're eating "humanely raised" meat, dairy, and eggs. When you factor in the breeding, transporting, and slaughter, is it possible to have "humane" animal products?

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Some people are afraid that their social lives will suffer when they eliminate meat and dairy from their diet, since social occasions and food tend to go hand in hand. For anyone who has ever thought it's difficult as a vegetarian to dine out or to eat at the home of non-vegetarian friends, I hope this can be a guide and a resource. It also includes suggestions for having productive dialogue in social situations.

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The words we use to refer to the animals we eat reveals a lot about how we feel about eating once-living creatures. If we can't comfortably call it what it is, then maybe we have a problem eating it in the first place.

Direct download: language_meat.mp3
Category:Health, Society & Culture, Fitness & Nutrition, News & Politics -- posted at: 1:45am PST
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Despite the crazy notion that non-dairy milks are alternatives to cow's milk, it's really the other way around when you consider the fact that the milk from nuts and soybeans has been used for thousands of years. Join me as I explore the many commercial (and homemade) milks available to those of us who've weaned ourselves from the milk of cows.

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