Archive for April, 2012

April 25, 2012

Kale Krunch

by jem614

By Jessica Michael

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Kaia Foods was generous enough to send us an “alternative” version of their Kale chips that is made by their sister company, Alive & Radiant (I believe they will be merging their co’s).

First of all, the Kale chips look like actual Kale pieces.  I opened the bag as soon as I got home because I wanted to see how it stacked up to the previous Kaia chips.  I was pleasantly surprised: they had sent us bags of the Quite Cheesy chips that are made with cashew cheese, nutritional yeast, red bell peppers and a few other key ingredients.    The chips had a “nacho” feel because the red bell pepper gave it a Jalapeno taste.

The ultimate test was when my husband, who hates most things vegan, asked to try them and said they were good!  He actually asked me to leave a bag of the chips at home so he could eat them.  I don’t know if I have a veggie convert on my hands but he is now a convert to the Kale chips.

The only thing I think may be a little overwhelming is the heaviness of the chips.  They are not light and crispy (though light and crispy may cause the chips to be crushed in packaging so I can understand why) like home-made might be, they are quite thick and loaded with flavor.

However, with only about 220 calories in 2.2 oz  bag of chips, this could be a great alternative to greasy potato chips!

Check them out at http://shop.kaiafoods.com/ for more information on their company and some other options.

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April 23, 2012

Eating for Two: Pregnancy Do’s and Don’ts from a FTM

by jem614

By Jessica Michael
Being pregnant is one of the most exhilarating and fun times of your life.  It can also be one of the most difficult.
Before I got pregnant I heard about morning sickness and thought that I would have it a couple of times a day and be done with it.  Instead it was a 24 hour thing, I’d wake up with it and proceed to deal with it throught the rest of the day.   If you’ve been there, you can relate to the nausea, upset stomach, acid reflux, exhaustion, etc. etc.  As a result I would only eat what sounded good to eat:  If I felt like eating a veggie burger and fries, that’s what I would eat.  If I wanted to add desert, I did.  As a result, the scale started going up again (after years of it going down).  That was how I would cope, it felt like the only way to make myself feel better was to eat crap (veggies were almost off limits because they made me gag).

I am now in my second trimester.  I’m feeling so much better and eating better, not perfect but better.  However, I’m now contending with having to really monitor my eating so that I don’t go over my goal of under 30 lbs gained for the entire pregnancy.

The hard part of it all is that most people tell  you to eat whatever you want (because of the “I’m eating for two” myth).  Thankfully my husband has kept his sanity and he’s pushing me to eat healthy.  I’ve read about people who gained anywhere from 5lbs to 100 lbs during their pregnancy so everyone is different.

So, I have done tons of research and have asked friends who have been pregnant previously and here are a few things to prepare yourself for Impending Pregnancy:

1. Make an eating plan from the start- make it simple and consistent with foods that you can stomach- this can be difficult when your food aversions change weekly but it is possible.
A friend recommended fruits and oatmeal for breakfast- bland and not harsh on the stomach.  You can also try a organic whole-grain cereal with fruit.  Snacks- make sure to pack veggies with dips that are healthy and low fat- like greek yogurt, hummus and even peanut butter in moderation.  For lunch- eat a salad if you can, if not, grilled veggies, beans and rice, etc.  Snack- whole grain crackers with low salt and cheese for some protein (Daiya or regular if you are lacto-ovo).  Dinner, eat light and allow yourself another small snack before bed to stave off the nausea.

2.  Do whatever you can do to keep exercising- don’t stop! I made the mistake of stopping because I felt so exhausted and lazy and now I can’t do anything major because I’ve lost the momentum.  Even if you just lightly jog for 20 minutes and do some weights- whatever you do- just do something!  You will thank me later.

3.  Join baby boards- they are super informative and can give you some information you wouldn’t find anywhere else.  However, be aware that many of them can have catty women, negative comments and devastating news during the first trimester.  I became terrified of losing my baby because there were so many women posting about their losses.  Just remember this: There are sometimes up to 20,000 people on one board- there will be a percentage of them that may have difficult pregnancies.  They do need a place to vent and be comforted but realize that not everyone is having a loss, it’s just that those that are, post.

4.  Register for websites- samples, etc.  I even got two $4.95 sample of diapers from Honest.com (Jessica Alba’s website) along with wipees and sample shampoo, laundry, etc. etc.  I’m seriously considering continuing once my little one gets here because it’s incredibly convenient.  For $79 a month you can have an entire month supply of diapers delivered to you.  No need to fight the lines at WalMart or your local grocery store and you can have the assurance that your baby’s little booty is free from harsh chemicals and the diapers are biodegradable.  They also come in the cutest little designs for boys and girls- anchors, stripes, and more.

5. Seriously consider using cloth diapers- I’m doing a combination of both because most daycare centers will not allow cloth diapers- do them at home.  Read up on it, I’m convinced that it’s one way to help save the planet and your pocket book.

That’s the advice from a first time mom.  I’m still in the process so I will impart my wisdom as time goes on!

Some helpful websites:

http://www.babycenter.com
http://www.honest.com
http://www.gerber.com
http://www.pampers.com
http://www.huggies.com
http://www.target.com
http://www.babiesrus.com
http://www.babyfit.com
http://www.thebump.com

 

April 17, 2012

Vegan Diet for Kids?

by ashley

by Ashley Morgan

An article posted today on MSNBC has already garnered lots of attention from vegan supporters and cynics surrounding whether children should be taught to eat a vegan diet. Despite the fact that the typical American diet is high in saturated fats and considerably less balanced than the average vegan diet, there are still many cynics purporting that a vegan or vegetarian diet simply isn’t “balanced” enough.

 

 

I’d like to hear your thoughts on this, should children be fed a vegan or vegetarian diet? Do you raise your children on a certain diet?

April 13, 2012

Evol Frozen Vegan and Vegetarian Cuisine

by ashley

by Ashley Morgan

A brand new Publix opened up just a few blocks from my house a few weeks ago. It may sound a bit pathetic, but that was a huge excitement for me. Our area is full of large buildings and the other two Publixs in the area were a nightmare to just to walk through the aisles, much less actually wait in a check-out line. Plus, a shiny, new grocery store always inspires a slightly slower waltz through the aisles, which helps me find new brands. This time I found Evol, a brand out of Denver, Colorado that originally started as a burrito stand at the bottom of a mountain trail.

Evol’s packaging first caught my eye because of it’s bold design, but I kept reading after seeing the stamp “New & Improved Compostable Bowl” on the upper corner. Their vegetarian and vegan options are slim, but I picked up a vegan veggie fajita burrito and a vegetarian bean & cheese enchilada to try. It’s great that they also use corn tortillas in their enchiladas, making them gluten free. The burrito is made from a wheat tortilla and does contain gluten.

Upon first glance when opening the package to the enchilada, I thought it looked a bit messy. Like a hodgepodge of corn kernels, tomatoes and beans. I couldn’t see any cheese. I took the plastic wrapper off the bowl and cooked it on high in the microwave for four minutes, as the package indicates. Once done, I immediately noticed that the bowl looked a bit dry. The edges were microwaved to a crisp. I cut into the center and took a look around the inside, unfortunately finding it to be dry, as well. The good points I noticed as that all vegetables were distinguishable and seemed to be fresh. The corn has a great char on it and tastes great. Eating through it, I still couldn’t find much moisture and none of the cheese. The rice was mixed around in small portions. The corn tortilla was very authentic and tasted great, except for the hard edges, which is tough to cook in a microwave. I probably wouldn’t eat this again, at $4.99 it is a bit expensive and just didn’t have enough sauce or flavor overall. I still prefer Amy’s for organic, vegetarian frozen Mexican fare.

The vegan veggie fajita burrito didn’t do much better. Visually it looks great, even when cutting into the center. Again the vegetables are discernable and seem to be really fresh. Picking the peppers and corn kernels out was quite enjoyable, however the burrito as a whole was just lacking in flavor. It did have a much better consistency than the bowl, with more moisture. I was just disappointed overall with the flavor of both of these products. I love their idea and hope they continue improving their flavors.

April 11, 2012

BIG Changes Coming Soon – and our biggest GIVEAWAY!

by ashley

I can’t believe that this month marks Veg On The Run’s ONE YEAR ANNIVERSARY! In honor of our anniversary, we have some huge changes coming to the site.

Our unveiling will be happening very soon – and what better way to celebrate than with one of our biggest GIVEAWAYS ever?

Make sure to keep coming back for updates on the what and when, along to see the unveiling of our NEW LOOK!

April 11, 2012

Kaia Foods Kale Chips and Fruit Leather at Whole Foods

by jem614

 

By Jessica Michael

I have been wanting to try store-bought kale chips for ages and finally found some last night at Whole Foods.  I also picked up this cute little fruit leather made by the same company, “Kaia Foods”.  They were bargain-priced at only about $5 1/2 (most of the ones I have seen go up into the $8-9 range).

Here is my take: They have a great concept, the fruit leather was good, a little dry but cinamony and still tasty.  The Kale Chips, on the other hand, were not my favorite.

We do everything we can to provide positive reviews while still being honest on our site and I have to just say that these went straight into the garbage can.  I barely finished one chip and all my co-workers threw out their bites as well.  There may be those raw vegans who would absolutely love them but for those of us that waver on the hotter side of food, I’m afraid many may be disappointed.  Don’t get me wrong, I’ve tried homemade Kale chips before and they weren’t bad.  Maybe it’s something about the way they blend the other ingredients in that changes everything.

I will still try Kaia’s products because I’m sure that some of them are really good, I think I just picked the ones that are not “fitting” for my palate.

 

April 4, 2012

Dreaming Cow Cream Top Yogurt, Non-Homogenized

by ashley

by Ashley Morgan


In case you didn’t already know, I absolutely adore cows. Whether it be live cows on the side of the road, cow-themed items or cutesy cow cartoon characters, I love them all. So, naturally, when I saw the label for Dreaming Cow’s cream top yogurt, I was instantly intrigued. After reading the label a bit more, I realized it is actually a wholesome product along with the cute design. Before today I hadn’t been privy to the growing debate of homogenized versus non-homogenized yogurts, however apparently it is a large issue for many yogurt aficionados.

Homogenization prevents the fats, or cream, in milk from separating from the liquid. This became popular in the 1950s, when dairy farms were trying to prevent milk spoilage. Homogenization allows for soured milk to be more easily identified, as it will separate when bad. Milk straight from a cow will separate immediately, therefore relying solely on smell to determine if it has soured. Ever since the 1950s, milk has become widely homogenized, as has yogurt. It is close to impossible to find non-homogenized yogurts in a traditional grocery store today.

This is what makes Dreaming Cow unique, along with the fact that their cows are raised completely on grass and are not fed any hormones. When you slide the top off of Dreaming Cow yogurt, you will notice a slightly chunky substance at the top. If you like, you can skim this off to eat by itself or, how I enjoy it, you can mix it with a spoon before consuming. Cream lovers will attest to eating the cream on the top first, on its own, before consuming the rest of the yogurt.

Any way you choose to eat it, Dreaming Cow has made a superior product from their small farm in Georgia. The yogurt is slightly thinner than yogurt I am used to, however this is due to the lack of preservatives and unknown chemical substances. I tried the Strawberry Pomegranate flavor, which is subtle and smooth. I also love the story behind their farm. Kyle and Janelle Wehner, the husband and wife artisans behind the company, craft these lovely yogurts after Janelle’s home of New Zealand. Since 2009, they have had what they proclaim to be the happiest cows in the world producing the high-quality milk that goes into each cup of yogurt. Keep up the amazing work, Dreaming Cow!

 

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