A well-known community activist attended one of our recent events.
When asked how he ended up working for so many causes, he replied that when young, he hung around loud kids who drank. Then, an individual approached him and said he could do something more with his life. That one comment changed him. This story illustrates the impact your encouragement can have. So, for those working for positive change, you never know the seeds you may have planted.
This VJ issue covers the wide gamut of vegetarians. In a story about Sticky Fingers Bakery, the owners state they are ethical vegans but admit they are also junk food fanatics. In another piece, our Vegetarian Resource Group essay contest winner is concerned about world hunger. She became vegetarian at age 16 after a mission trip with her church to a third world country. Debra reviews cookbooks from the Chicago Diner, which offers good hearty home cooking; the Candle Café, which often serves gourmet foods to the stars; and a raw foods chef. In this Journal, Sue Havala Hobbs, DrPH, RD, talks about the popular low-carb diets, while Joan Brookhyser, RD, addresses kidney disease.
Certainly our readers and people in the vegetarian movement have different tastes and ideas, as well as different motivations and needs. In more than 20 years of Vegetarian Resource Group outreach and research, we have seen many diets, ranging from extremely lowfat, raw foods, or high protein to high soy, low soy, low carbohydrate, no oil, or special oils. One diet may not fit all. For example, just because one person is allergic to peanut butter, this doesn’t mean that others can’t or shouldn’t consume it. There are so many different opinions that many people feel they can’t know what scientifically makes sense. The following excerpts from Reed Mangels, PhD, RD, in Simply Vegan are worth repeating:
|Often we are faced with newspaper headlines like “Coffee Drinking Leads to Pancreatic Cancer” or “Vegans Have a Deficiency of Vitamin X.” These are frequently based on the result of one study. When you read a report like this... consider the strengths and limitation of each type of nutrition study. Usually one study is not enough to answer a large question in an area as complex as nutrition. Normally, when a controversial study is published, other scientists begin to do experiments to see if they can get similar results. If several scientists, using different methods, come to similar conclusions, more faith can be placed in their results.... Recommendations change due to new information and to new ways of looking at previously collected information.|
Like the promise of tremendous financial returns without risk, if someone tells you they know the perfect diet for everyone, whether vegetarian or carnivorous, be wary.
Debra Wasserman & Charles Stahler
Coordinators of The Vegetarian Resource Group
The Vegetarian Journal published here is not the complete issue, but these are excerpts from the published magazine. Anyone who wishes to see everything should subscribe to the magazine.
Thanks to volunteer Stephanie Schueler for converting this article to HTML.
The contents of this website and our other publications, including Vegetarian Journal, are not intended to provide personal medical advice. Medical advice should be obtained from a qualified health professional. We often depend on product and ingredient information from company statements. It is impossible to be 100% sure about a statement, info can change, people have different views, and mistakes can be made. Please use your own best judgment about whether a product is suitable for you. To be sure, do further research or confirmation on your own.
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