Food for Thought: The Joys and Benefits of Living Vegan

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January 2007
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Iron deficiency is the most common nutrient deficiency in the U.S. and worldwide. The groups that are most susceptible are women who menstruate (that is, women of childbearing age), pregnant and lactating women, teenagers, and children aged 6 months to 4 years. This is true for vegetarians and non-vegetarians. I repeat: This is true for vegetarians and non-vegetarians. Once again, this is not a case where vegans have to be concerned and non-vegetarians don't. This essential mineral is abundant in plant-based foods and is better absorbed with vitamin C-rich foods. In this episode, I debunk myths about iron, name some iron-rich plant-based foods, explain why overconsumption of iron is a cause for concern, and even suggest that we give our blood away! Tune in for tips and resources on making healthful, compassionate choices.

Direct download: iron.mp3
Category:Health, Society & Culture, Fitness & Nutrition, News & Politics -- posted at: 1:35am PDT
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I'm always struck by the notion that vegetarianism is a political position but eating meat is neutral. You know what I mean? The media are usually afraid to touch the subject (vegetarianism) lest they be promoting a particular position, as if they're NOT promoting a particular position when they represent meat, dairy, and eggs in a favorable light. These are the gatekeepers that decide how issues are presented to the public. As a result, the public accepts the information as gospel and thinks they're making independent food choices - until those darn vegetarians come along and spoil everything. Considering the billions of advertising dollars spent to persuade people to eat animal flesh and secretions, the millions of congressional contributions meant to persuade the government to create policies favorable to the food industry, and the millions of dollars in government subsidies given to the animal exploitation industries - I hate to say it, but we're not even CLOSE to making independent food choices. We're told what to eat every minute of every day.

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A number of you have written and asked me to talk about what else you can do beyond just stopping eating animals and animal secretions. You want to do more, and I commend you. We need you. The animals need you, and there much work to do. In another show we’ll talk about specific things you can do, but first I want to talk about processing all of this information about the cruelty inflicted upon animals. Between "the learning" and "the doing," there is "the being," "the processing" of all this new information, and we need to know a little about where we are before we can get to where we're going. In this episode, I offer five suggestions for processing this information and taking it into the world effectively and humbly.

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