email page print pageAll Topic Reviews
Self-Compassion in Psychotherapy10 Minute Solution: Butt Lift10 Minute Solution: High Intensity Interval Training101 Ways to Meditate3-In-1 Total Body Fitness with Desi Bartlett30 Minute Ab & Butt Blaster5 Day Fit Yoga5 Mega Miles with Toning Band7 Weeks to 100 Push-Ups8 Keys to Practicing MindfulnessA Student's Guide to the History And Philosophy of Yoga A.M. EnergyAgeless Mobility: Pain-Free Wellness For LongevityAlmost MeatlessAlready FreeAlternative Medicine?Anywhere, Anytime, Any Body YogaAthlete's Guide to YogaBack in Action: Yoga for a Healthy BackBalanced AssetsBedroom Body: Booty Burner, Core & Pelvic Floor WorkoutBeginners Meditation & Mindful StretchingBeginners Yoga DVDBeginning YogaBellyFit ElementsBethenny's Skinnygirl WorkoutBody By BethennyBorn to Balance - Balance BasicsBreath-Centered YogaCalm Body Clear MindCalm Focus JoyCardio for Beginners with Petra KolberChakra MeditationsComplementary and Alternative Therapies ResearchContemplative Psychotherapy EssentialsCore Fusion - Pilates PlusCore Fusion - Pure Abs & ArmsCore Fusion - Thighs & GlutesCore Fusion Body SculptCore Fusion Lean & TonedCore Fusion Power SculptCore Strength PilatesCore Strength Vinyasa Yoga Power Hour with Sadie NardiniCore YogaCultural Healing and Belief SystemsDance Off the Inches: Cardio Hip Hop PartyDeep Stretch / Yin YogaDetox YogaDr. Andrew Weil's Guide to Eating WellDr. Yoga House CallEasy YogaElement: Barre ConditioningElement: Targeted Toning Pilates for BeginnersElement: Yoga for Stress Relief & FlexibilityElements of Yoga, Earth FoundationsElements of Yoga, Fire DynamicElements of Yoga: Air & WaterEveryday Workout for the Everyday WomanEveryday Yoga for Stress Release Everything VeganExercise for Mood and AnxietyExhale Core Fusion 30 Day SculptFamily YogaFit Family Fun CircuitFit in 5 DVDFlat Abs PilatesFlow YogaFluid Power Vinyasa Flow YogaFully PresentGaiam Pilates Slide and Sculpt Kit with DVDGaiam Pilates Total Toning KitGaiam Yoga For Weight Loss KitGet Fit Through GardeningGet Ripped & ChiseledGet Stronger Bones: 3 Workouts For OsteoporosisHandbook of MindfulnessHappy Yoga DVDHealing the Heart and Mind with MindfulnessHealing through ExerciseHealing Through Movement: Pilates Head to ToeHealing, Hype, or Harm?Healthy Sexy Beautiful Kundalini YogaHemalayaa: Bollywood BootyHow to Cook Everything VegetarianHow Would Buddha Act?In Defense of FoodInsight Yoga Earth: Balancing Yin EnergyInsight Yoga Heaven: Balancing YangIntegrated YogaKids Teach Yoga - Flying EagleKidYogi - Yoga for ChildrenKripalu YogaKundalini Yoga : DVDKUNDALINI YOGA for Your Week - MONDAYKUNDALINI YOGA for Your Week - TUESDAY - CoreKundalini Yoga MeditationKundalini Yoga Meditation for Beginners & BeyondKundalini Yoga Meditation for Complex Psychiatric DisordersKundalini Yoga on the BallKundalini Yoga Solar Power All-In-One WorkoutKundalini Yoga to Detox and Destress DVDKundalini Yoga Transformer All-In-One WorkoutKundalini Yoga: Green Energy of the HeartLetting Go!LifeForce Yoga to Beat the Blues--Level 1LifeForce Yoga to Beat the Blues: Level 2Living BeautifullyLiving Room Yoga DVDLiving Room Yoga: Twist and BendLunar Flow YogaMake It Fast, Cook It SlowManage Your Depression Through ExerciseMaui PilatesMayo Clinic Wellness Solutions for Back PainMayo Clinic Wellness Solutions for IBSMayo Clinic Wellness Solutions for InsomniaMeditations for BeginnersMindful AmericaMindful ColoringMindfulness for BeginnersMindfulness for CarersMindfulness for TwoMindfulness in Plain EnglishMindfulness-Based Treatment Approaches: Clinician's Guide to Evidence Base and ApplicationsMisadventures of a Garden State YogiNamaste Yoga: Season 3 Part 1Natural FlexibilityNew Good FoodNew VegetarianNew York PilatesNext-Level PilatesNutrition Essentials for Mental HealthPain Free at WorkPeace Is Every BreathPerfect in Ten AbsPerfect in Ten: PilatesPerfect in Ten: StretchPerfect in Ten: YogaPilates AnatomyPilates for BeginnersPositivityPower to the Peaceful YogaPower YogaPower YogaPower Yoga: Core PowerPower Yoga: Fat BurnerPower Yoga: Strength and FlexibilityPrenatal FlowPrescriptive StretchingPresence Through Movement: Yin YogaPsychology Moment by MomentPure and Simple YogaPure SculptQi Gong Fire & Water With Matthew CohenQi Gong Flow for BeginnersQi Gong for Low Back PainQi Gong for Upper Back and Neck PainQi Gong for Weight LossQi Workout AM/PMQiGong for Healthy Joints & BonesQiGong IllustratedQuick Blast MethodRadiant Heart Yoga DVDReach - Upbeat Toning & Flexibility for a Dancer's BodyRelax Into Yoga for SeniorsResistance Stretching With Dara TorresRestorative Yoga PracticeRestorative Yoga PracticeSara Ivanhoe's Taste DVDSelfless InsightSoupsSparkSpontaneous HappinessStep By Step Strength TrainingStep by Step Tai ChiStrength & SpiritStress Relief to GoStretchStrong & SculptedStrong Body, Ageless BodySuper Seniors: Box, Balance, & Lift Surf Yoga SoulSybel's Yoga For Sports & FitnessSybel's Yoga For Sports & Fitness Vol 2Tai Chi for Beginners with Grandmaster William C. C. ChenTeen YogaTeenYogi DVDTen Zen Tummy TonersThe 6 Qualities of ConsciousnessThe Accidental VeganThe Art and Science of MindfulnessThe Athlete's Guide to YogaThe Best Things You Can EatThe Booty Barre -Total New BodyThe Complete Book of Raw FoodThe Get Healthy, Go Vegan CookbookThe Healing Remedies SourcebookThe Healing Remedies SourcebookThe Kettlebell BoomerThe Light of DiscoveryThe Mandala of BeingThe Meat Lover's Meatless CookbookThe Mindful Way through DepressionThe Perfect ExerciseThe Psychology of LifestyleThe Qi Healing KitThe Road to Calm WorkbookThe Science of YogaThe Spirit of Buddhist MeditationThe Spirit of Tibetan BuddhismThe Ultimate BALLET YOGAThe Ultra MindsetThe Well-Tuned BrainThe Yin Yoga KitTotal Health the Chinese WayTotal-Body ToningTransform Yourself with Jivamukti YogaTransformative YogaTrudie Styler's Cardio Dance FlowTrudie Styler's Warrior YogaV-Core WorkoutVegan ExpressVegan for LifeVegetarian Visitor 2008Viniyoga Therapy for the Low Back, Sacrum and HipsViniyoga Therapy for the Upper Back, Neck and ShouldersViva Vegan!Walk It Off in 30 DaysWalk to the HITS Radio RemixesWatch Me Do YogaWeight Loss Cardio KickWeight Watchers: Ultimate Belly SeriesYin and Yang YogaYin Yoga DVDYogaYogaYoga - Philosophy for EveryoneYoga : Beginners Flow for EveryoneYoga AnatomyYoga as MedicineYoga Bliss HipsYoga BodyYoga Body : Lean & Defined Total Body WorkoutYoga By Teens DVDYoga Emergency DVD: Arms & ShouldersYoga Emergency DVD: BackYoga Emergency DVD: Full Leg StretchYoga Emergency DVD: HipsYoga Emergency DVD: PregnancyYoga Flow DVDYoga for AnxietyYoga for Back CareYoga for BeginnersYoga for Energy & Stress ReliefYoga for FitnessYoga for MeditatorsYoga for OsteoporosisYoga for Pain ReliefYoga for Strength & EnergyYoga for Strength & FlexibilityYoga for Your WeekYoga in BedYoga Inside Out: Go DeeperYoga Inside Out: The Healing WayYoga Journal's Yoga for StressYoga Journal: Yoga for Strength and Toning DVDYoga Link: Core IntegrationYoga Link: Hip HelpersYoga Link: Shoulder Shape-UpYoga Nidra for Complete Relaxation and Stress ReliefYoga Quick FixesYoga Skills for Therapists:Yoga TherapyYoga Therapy for Back PainYoga Therapy Prescriptions - 60 Health Restorative SequencesYoga to the Rescue - Feel Good from Head to ToeYoga to the Rescue for Back PainYoga to the Rescue for Neck & ShouldersYoga to the Rescue for Pain-Free Back, Neck & ShouldersYoga, Karma, and RebirthYoga: Freedom from Back PainYoga: Relief from Neck and Shoulder PainYoga: Spirit of Vinyasa FlowYogabodyYogawomanYou Can Think Yourself ThinYour Body Breakthru - Your Best Body Circuit DVDYour Brain on Food: How Chemicals Control Your Thoughts and Feelings,Your Brain on YogaZen Encounters with Loneliness
Vegan for Life, by Ginny Messina and Jack Norris, is a great read for both longtime vegans and people considering going vegan. It is quite a comprehensive book, whose authors are not only very knowledgeable about the latest nutritional research, but also manage to present it in a very accessible manner.
Although the book is quite ambitious and aims to cover a little bit of everything from nutrition to meal ideas to ethical issues, Vegan for Life does not focus too much on the ethical aspects of choosing a plant-based diet, nor does it engage in deep philosophical arguments concerning the use of animal products. The last chapter of the book ("Why vegan?") does mention a lot of these ethical issues, but, especially because this comes at the very end, none of it seems meant as a form of persuasion founded on guilt, as one may often find in other books on veganism, which usually start by listing all the negative consequences of a non-vegetarian or non-vegan diet. In addition to this last chapter, there is also a short introduction where the authors explain why they became vegan, but aside from those, the core of the book is really dedicated to the essential – and scientific-based – nutritional and health information one must have before and while following a vegan diet.
Because both authors are dietitians, they warn the readers about the potential dangers of resorting to junk-food veganism, but they do not, conversely, try to convince the reader to completely avoid junk food or industrialized products. They are aware of the pitfalls of a strict vegan diet and try to offer balanced and easy solutions to issues vegans face when they need to buy groceries or order a meal at a restaurant.
Besides bringing very up-to-date information on food nutrients and supplements, Vegan for Life is also carefully written to account for the specific needs of people in all stages of their lives, or with different lifestyles: pregnant and breast-feeding women, children, teenagers, menopausal women, people over fifty, and athletes.
In this book you will find clear information on the nutritional values of various types of food and food combinations, and learn why and how to use supplements such as B12, calcium, vitamin D, iron, zinc, and iodine, among others. Messina and Norris also do a good job highlighting some of the most common myths about the use of those supplements in vegan diets. Most notably, they explain why one should not wait three years before taking B12 supplements when one has gone vegan. B12 supplements are needed right away, to make sure anemia as well as other consequences of B12 deficiency are avoided. To better illustrate the essential facts about those vitamins and minerals, the book contains some very useful charts and tables on the nutritional values of certain foods, as well as of our needs for some key nutrients.
In spite of accentuating all positive aspects of a plant-based diet, the authors are not afraid to raise the two sides of contentious issues when that is needed. In chapter 15 - "Is it safe to eat soy?" - for instance, they talk about all potential benefits of this legume (for lowering risks of heart disease and breast cancer, for example), but also mention the possible harmful effects of excessive consumption of some forms of soy, especially when associated with unbalanced diets (like interference in thyroid function). But since there is an ever-growing number of studies on soy, and none is categorically conclusive, the authors carefully emphasize that soy products do not have to be an intrinsic part of a vegan diet. In fact, they suggest that people who choose to include soy in their diets limit its intake to three or four servings a day.
Now, the most interesting chapter for those transitioning to veganism is chapter 8 ("Making the transition to a vegan diet"), which is also where the authors leave some of the scientificity of the previous chapters aside and give a more detailed account of what kinds of ingredients and meals best constitute a vegan diet.
Although this is not meant to be a cookbook, it does contain a few suggestions for vegan meals (including ingredient substitution), and to make a vegan diet easier to follow with some ingredients easily found in grocery stores. Messina and Norris also give recommendations for some product brands, which is a great thing for people who are not yet familiar with the range of products available for all vegan tastes and styles. In fact, the authors always make sure to emphasize that a huge part of the success of a vegan diet depends on the trial part of "trial and error:" if you have tried some vegan product or food and did not like it, they always suggest that you try a different brand, or recipe. The important thing is to give it at least a second chance.
All in all, with chapters covering a full range of aspects of a vegan diet, this book is (perhaps together with a good vegan cookbook) a great starting point for anyone who wants to become vegan, and an excellent reference even for people who have always followed a vegan diet.
© 2012 Aline Medeiros Ramos
Aline Medeiros Ramos, PhD candidate in philosophy, Université du Québec à Montréal firstname.lastname@example.org