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Vegan Nutrition: Pure and Simpleby Michael Klaper, M.D.
First published in 1987
"Dedicated to Gentleness
Published in 1987 and printed entirely on recycled paper, this most special of books is designed to serve as a planning guide for establishing a nutritional program that is free of meat, dairy or any other animal products.
Many people are concerned about the high incidence of health threats that are lniked to improper diet, like heart attacks, strokes, birth defects, breast, prostate and other cancers, high blood presure, diabetes and other diseases. They are seeking more wholesome food alternatives for themselves and their families.
Some concerned people do not want to contribute to the violence inherent in meat production, such as that inflicted upon animals during factory farming, or at the slaughterhouse. Still others hope to heal our planet's troubled ecosystem, with its vanishing rain forests and dwindling water supplies. The grain and water resources that are converted into a single beefsteak meal can feed eight people for a day.
Vegan Nutrition: Pure and Simple reads much like John Robbins' Diet for a New America and indeed this is one of the books that is listed as recommended further reading. Author, international dietary educator and holder of a medical degree Michael Klaper presents his arguments clearly and with both dedication and restraint. The modern diet is questioned from the outset, be it the toxins, harmful bacteria and other pollutants present in meat and dairy products or the sixty-five teaspoons of fat to be found in the average western diet for a person in a single day.
An entire appendix is given over to page after page of vegan recipes with helpful ideas for all components of each daily meal - everything from breakfast ideas in the morning through to numerous soups, sauces and deserts suitable for a main evening meal.
Interspersed throughout the book are quotes from doctors, athletes and scientists as well as details of other famous vegetarians from history who committed to doing all they could to promote the health benefits of such a diet. These sections talk about people such as Ben Franklin and Plato, through to those who promote such a lifestyle in more recent times.
"Veganism encompasses and puts into action all of the love and compassion every peace-seeking person lives for."
John and Arlyn Phoenix have raised their five children as vegans largely for reasons of ethics and compassion. Arlyn explains, "Our family believes in gentleness, kindness, honesty, and truth. That's why our children, River, Rainbow, Leaf, Liberty, and Summer, while having careers in show business, are very careful about the scripts they accept. You can't compromise your soul."
The talented and active children have all been featured in Hollywood films and on television. The family's desire for non-violence in their diets and lifestyles, and the examples they set, have earned them special recognition on the sets where the children perform.
The health advantages of a vegan diet radiate from the Phoenix children. They take no medications or vitamin supplements, have no allergies or serious illnesses, and have never required care by a physician.
"Being a vegan," Arlyn reflects, "is a wonderful blessing for the whole family. It is a very important step to a higher consciousness. The gift of good health is the 'topping on the cake.'"
Movie stars with the conscience and determination to match their words with actions can buy up areas of first-growth forest to prevent them from being destroyed. But what can the rest of us do? The author, fulfilling the "pure and simple" promise in the book's title, quotes from the results of an investigation published in 1984 that concluded that the simple act of a single person changing to a pure vegetarian diet would save one acre of trees from being cleared.
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