Vegetarian Diplomacy

Why go more plant-based?

05/06/2018 Share NUTRISPEAK by Vesanto Melina A half century ago, vegetarian and vegan diets were viewed with concern by health professionals. In decades since, these have been the focus of vast amounts of research. Today, a dietary shift in the direction of plant foods is regarded as a very positive step by knowledgeable dietitians, MDs, nutritional scientists and by a growing number of the general public. Why the shift? Reduced risk… Read More »Why go more plant-based?

Explore veggie meetup groups

02/05/2018 Share NUTRISPEAK by Vesanto Melina Some people from Winnipeg call our fair city “Vegcouver.” One good reason is that when we search the helpful, plant-based eating guide, www.happycow.net, for Vancouver BC, we find no less than 244 listings. These include vegan, vegetarian and veg-friendly restaurants, as well as other food outlets. If we narrow our filter just to vegan restaurants, we still end up with 25 listings. A significant number… Read More »Explore veggie meetup groups

Getting kids to eat their veggies

01/09/2018 Share NUTRISPEAK by Vesanto Melina and Kristen Yarker While many toddlers and preschoolers aren’t fans of vegetables, thankfully, there are effective, helpful strategies less forceful than the age-old techniques of forcing kids to eat two bites of broccoli or allowing dessert only after they’ve finished their peas. The following techniques will help kids enjoy veggies now and appreciate these nutrition-packed foods when they grow up. Be a veggie-eating role model: Actions speak… Read More »Getting kids to eat their veggies

Our munching munchkins

08/12/2017 +Share NUTRISPEAK by Vesanto Melina and Claudia Lemay Like a super-powered magnet, children are often drawn to sugary and non-nutritious foods. However, regular consumption of junk food can lead to health problems, such as chronic illness and poor performance at school and in sports. It can also lead to kids becoming overweight, fostering low self-esteem. Even when they are protected from junk foods as infants, watch a young tot’s eyes light… Read More »Our munching munchkins

Going plant happy

08/07/2017 +Share NUTRISPEAK by Vesanto Melina Catherine Jones and Stéphane Lahaye Are you interested in pursuing a plant-based lifestyle but don’t know where to start? Read on for easy ways to swap out animal products for plant-based alternatives that still provide all the nutrients you need. “How can I get enough protein?” is one of the first questions people ask when cutting out meat. Science has confirmed we can easily satisfy… Read More »Going plant happy

Realism and compassion

06/05/2017 Share NUTRISPEAK by Vesanto Melina For many, doing what comes naturally is an appealing concept. (For a good laugh, look up “Doin’ what comes natur’lly” on Youtube, from Annie Get Your Gun.) Often, the appeal comes from a realistic concern regarding food mass produced in systems never envisioned a century ago, using toxic pesticides and genetically modified organisms. The result can be a rather confused mix of practices. People will eat… Read More »Realism and compassion

Dairy-free and delicious

07/05/2016 FacebookTwitterGoogle+Share NUTRISPEAK by Vesanto Melina & Dave Shishkoff • Last month, I had the pleasure of being a presenter at the Dairy-Free Living course – complete with tastings – at Vancouver’s Central Library. One thing is now clear: there is an abundance of delicious, healthful dairy alternatives. Vancouver is home to several independent non-dairy milk and nut-based companies that produce a pleasing array of cheeses. There’s also a completely vegan ice cream… Read More »Dairy-free and delicious

The food fairy: explaining healthy food choices for children

01/03/2016 FacebookTwitterGoogle+Share NUTRISPEAK by Vesanto Melina MS, RD, and Claudia Lemay • I know a little girl who is obsessed with candy; it is ironic, given her mother is a dietitian. “What have I done to deserve such a fussy daughter?” she would lament, confiding that Amelie would ask for candy for snacks and for breakfast, lunch and supper. At 3-½, Amelie wrote a grocery list for her mother, listing only a single… Read More »The food fairy: explaining healthy food choices for children

Core beliefs about a plant-based diet

01/09/2016 FacebookTwitterGoogle+Share NUTRISPEAK by Vesanto Melina   •  I recently took out – from our wonderful public library system – a set of CDs entitled This I Believe. They are based on a popular NPR (National Public Radio) series that invited people to write a 500-word essay on a core belief that guided their daily life and to then read their essay on the air. (See website at the end of the… Read More »Core beliefs about a plant-based diet

Shaping up in 2016 with renewed diet and fitness practices

01/01/2016 FacebookTwitterGoogle+Share NUTRISPEAK by Vesanto Melina MS, RD • At this time of year, it can be invigorating to renew our diet and fitness practices. This might involve shedding a few pounds, eating more veggies, gaining muscle strength and posting regular dates for exercise on the calendar. One goal might be to get in shape. Belly fat or visceral fat (meaning fat in and around body organs) is far more dangerous to… Read More »Shaping up in 2016 with renewed diet and fitness practices