Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Sample Diabetic Vegetarian Menu

Though the task of planning out a diabetic vegetarian menu might seem a little daunting, with a little creativity and forethought, it can actually be very straightforward. Here is a sample two-day menu for some ideas and inspiration:

Day One
Breakfast: 1/3 cup cranberry juice orsugar free cranberry juice cocktail3/4 cup cooked oatmeal with 1/2 banana and1 teaspoon vegan margarine8 ounces enriched soymilk
Morning Snack: 3 cups low fat popped popcorn with2 teaspoons nutritional yeast1/2 cup orange juice
Lunch: 6" pita stuffed with 2 ounces meat substitute (equivalent to 2 ADA meat exchanges), lettuce, radishes, and cucumbers1 cup shredded cabbage with 1-1/2 Tablespoons vegan mayonnaise8 ounces enriched soymilk
Afternoon Snack: Fruit smoothie made with8 ounces soymilk, 2 ounces silken tofu, and1/2 cup frozen or fresh berries, blended together3 sugar-free ginger snaps
Dinner: Baked eggplant (1/2 cup) with1/4 cup tomato sauce1/2 cup black beans with 1/3 cup brown riceone medium baked apple
Evening Snack: 2 Tablespoons peanut butter on 6 crackers

Day Two
Breakfast
: 1/2 cup melon slices2 slices French toast (made with soy milk and cooked in vegetable oil with 1/4 cup chopped peaches or apricots4 ounces enriched soymilk
Morning Snack: 1/2 cup fresh grapes6 assorted low-fat crackers Sparkling water
Lunch: 1 cup mushroom barley soup with2 ounces smoked seitan (A chewy, protein-rich food made from wheat gluten and used as a meat substitute) 1/2 cup green and wax bean salad with2 teaspoons sesame seeds and 2 Tablespoons reduced-fat salad dressing8 ounces enriched soymilk
Afternoon Snack: 1/2 cup sugar-free chocolate pudding (You may create this at home with a sugar-free mix like Sorbee or Estee and any nondairy milk.)
Dinner: 1 cup chili with lentils with1/4 cup prepared Textured Vegetable Protein (TVP) over 1/3 cup white rice 1/2 cup steamed or roasted carrots1/2 cup fresh pineapple slices
Evening Snack: 1/2 cup pretzels8 ounces enriched soymilk

Sunday, March 11, 2007

Reasons for not eating Chicken

If most of us thought about the conditions in which chickens used for meat and eggs are raised and slaughtered, we’d become vegetarian immediately. Egg-laying chickens can be raised in cages with 6 chickens to a cage, each chicken getting only 67 square inches of space for its lifetime.

Unless they’re certified and labeled as being free-range or organic or natural, they might have been fed growth hormones to get them to slaughter faster, and antibiotics to combat the diseases which come from being raised in cramped and less-than-clean conditions.

And consider what the recommendations are for cleaning up after touching poultry? It’s recommended to clean surfaces with bleach to remove bacteria, and to wash your hands thoroughly after touching a chicken.

Do you really want to put something into your body that requires bleach to clean up after? Something that needs to be cooked to specific temperatures to be sure you’ve destroyed any bacteria that could make you sick?

Chickens and turkeys have become so mass-produced and injected with antibiotics and hormones that there’s no taste to it anymore, so why bother? Even the most humanely treated chicken has either been stunned in a salt-water brine before being beheaded. In John Robbins excellent book and video, Diet for a Small Planet, he shows us pictures of chickens being grabbed in groups by the neck and thrown into cages. Can you really consider eating a chicken with that vision in your head?

Any means of mass-producing animals for human consumption is by its very nature unhealthy and cruel for the animals, and unhealthy for humans as well. Even if you’re of the opinion that man is a natural hunter, how natural is it to eat an animal that’s been raised in captivity and fed a diet of hormones and antibiotics?

Tuesday, March 06, 2007

A Sample Menu for a Pregnant Vegetarian

Though your nutritional needs increase now that you’re pregnant, your pregnancy vegetarian diet shouldn’t have to change all that much. With some careful planning to ensure your caloric, vitamin, and mineral needs are met, you can still enjoy a rich variety of nutrient-dense delicious foods and help give your baby a nutritious jump-start. Consider the following daily menu for ideas and inspiration.

Breakfast:
1/2 cup oatmeal with maple syrup
1 slice whole wheat toast with fruit spread
1 cup soy milk
1/2 cup calcium and vitamin D fortified orange juice

Snack:
1/2 whole wheat bagel with margarine
Banana

Lunch:
Veggie burger on whole wheat bun with mustard and catsup
1 cup steamed collard greens
Medium apple
1 cup soy milk

Snack:
3/4 cup ready-to-eat cereal with 1/2 cup blueberries
1 cup soy milk

Dinner:

3/4 cup tofu stir-fried with 1 cup vegetables
1 cup brown rice
Medium orange

Snack:
Whole grain crackers with 2 Tbsp peanut butter
4 ounces apple juice

If morning sickness is causing you problems, try eating low fat, high carbohydrate nutrient-dense foods. These are digested more quickly and stay in the stomach for less time giving less time for queasiness. Remember to eat often. Sometimes nausea is really hunger in disguise.

Be sure to drink juice, water, or soy milk if you can't eat solid food. Keep trying to eat whatever you can. If you’re unable to eat or drink the appropriate amounts of foods or fluids for 24 hours or more, get in touch with your healthcare provider.