Archive for September, 2013


Alright; today I’m here to talk to you as a sort of public service announcement.  I thought of this topic because the family that I’m staying with right now knows that I am eating vegan, and is constantly hassling me about my protein intake, as well as my other nutritional needs.  They are big on medical issues, and are constantly telling me how I need to take vitamin supplements to make sure I’m getting the nutrition I need every day.  And it is really starting to bug me; so I started thinking, are there other people like them out there?  People that think that vegans need to work hard to get the protein and other vitamins and nutrients they need in a day in order to survive?  Because that just isn’t true, and I’m here to prove it to you.

The fact of the matter is, most Americans and people all over the world for that matter eat too much protein in a day.  Between cheeseburgers, fast food, and what we eat every day, people consume way more than the amount they really need, which is around 1/3 of your body weight in grams per day.  I weigh 180lbs, so that means that I need about 60g of protein every day.  And I really don’t have to try hard to get myself there; in fact, I don’t even really think about it or monitor it at all – I did when I first became a vegan because I was nervous that I was going to make myself sick, but after going on two years of eating this way, I think I have a pretty good routine going on.

Let me tell you what I’m eating today, and we’ll see how many vitamins, nutrients, calories, and protein I am getting.

best-smoothie-recipesWe’ll start with breakfast, which for me just about every day is a smoothie.  And, in this smoothie goes all sorts of delicious things (though because of the contrasting colors, it usually ends up looking like mud …)  I always start with kale and/or spinach, depending on what I have, and mixed frozen vegetables.  I’m partial to frozen bananas and peaches, which is what I had today, but if I don’t have those I also make ice cubes using soy or almond milk for the cold part of the smoothie.  I also use a cup of nondairy yogurt, and as you may have guessed from my earlier post about So Delicious Greek yogurt, which you can see here, that is what I use, which has live cultures in it for probiotics.  Then goes the fruit juice, which is a combination of acai juice and peach mango silk juice at the moment, along with some coconut oil.

Let’s look at this objectively now, and consider the numbers.  Half a cup of kale is about a gram of protein, 103% of my daily vitamin A, 70% of my daily vitamin C, 5% of my calcium, and 3% iron.  In ONE ingredient.  Frozen fruits, assuming bananas and peaches, though I believe there is something else in the mix I get, have 1g protein, 3% vitamin A, 15% of my vitamin C, and 1% iron.  In the So Delicious Greek yogurt, (and I’m using the almond milk variety) there is another 7g of protein, as well as 35% of my daily vitamin B12, 35% of my daily Calcium, 30% of my daily vitamin D, and 30% of my daily Magnesium intake.  The coconut oil is sort of like fish oil, since it is good for my hair and nails, and that’s why I add it, so there really isn’t much actual nutritional value in it … After that, as for the juices, we’ll start with the mango peach juice.  That has 5g of protein, 100% of my daily vitamin C intake, 20% of my daily calcium intake, and 4% of my daily iron intake.  And finally, the acai juice has 1g of protein, 81% of my daily vitamin C, 8% of my daily calcium, and 7% of my daily iron, as well as being loaded with antioxidants.

That was a wall of text, I know, but let me show you what those numbers mean.  For breakfast alone, I am consuming:

Nutrient Amount
Protein  15g
Calcium  88%
Vitamin A  106%
Vitamin B12  35%
Vitamin C  266%
Vitamin D  30%
Iron  15%
Magnesium  30%

This is all just the first thing I eat in the morning, and I already have most of the vitamins and nutrients I need for the whole fricking day.  I’ve had a quarter of my protein, all the Vitamin A and C I could ever need, and I’m well on my way to having all of my calcium.  Next, let’s talk about my snacks during the day.  I’ve discovered that the Duane Reade I work above sells Karma Wellness Water in the cooler, so I’ve been getting that for lunch every day.  But, since it is supposed to be like a vitamin supplement, I’m not going to count it – I love the stuff, don’t get me wrong, but if we are only talking about the food I consume in a day, then I will simply have to dedicate a separate post to Karma Wellness Water all by itself.

The first thing I had to eat today when I got hungry at about 10am was a serving of dried dates, which was about a cup of them or so.  A cup of dates has 4g of protein, 1% of my Vitamin C, 6% of my calcium, and 8% of my iron.  About an hour or two later, I had basically ants on a log, except instead of peanut butter I had Sunbutter on the celery, which is basically peanut butter with sunflower kernels instead of the peanuts.  A great alternative for people who have allergies to nuts/tree nuts, btw, and it’s gluten free.  I had 3 large stalks of celery, which means about 2g of protein, 15% Vitamin A, 9% Vitamin C, 6% Calcium, and 2% Iron with about 2-3Tbsp of almond butter.  which is about 9g protein, 8% Calcium, 8% iron, 25% Vitamin E, and 20% Magnesium.  I had about a half cup of seedless raisins, which were about 3g of protein, 6% Vitamin C, 8% Calcium, and 17% Iron.  Next, about a cup of seedless red grapes, which is 1g protein, 2% Vitamin A, 27% Vitamin C, 2% Calcium, and 3% Iron.

Let’s add those numbers to the tally and see where I’m at now.

Nutrient Amount
Protein 34g
Calcium 110%
Vitamin A 121%
Vitamin B12 35%
Vitamin C 309%
Vitamin D 30%
Vitamin E 25%
Iron 53%
Magnesium 50%

It just keeps looking better and better, doesn’t it?  And we haven’t even hit lunch yet.  Lunch consists of about a half cup of hummus, (today I have the Tuscan Garden version, yum!) which is 8g of protein, 2% Calcium, 2% Vitamin A, and 4% Iron.  I’m going to eat that with a bag full of baby bell peppers in varying colors, which means 1g of protein, 1% Calcium, 11% Vitamin A, 200% Vitamin C, and 3% Iron.  After that, for afternoon snacks I have a package of Annie’s Grapes Galore bunny fruit snacks, which has pretty much nothing but 100% Vitamin C, but I love them so whatever xD  I also have a DeLish black bean and corn salsa for this afternoon as well, which I ate half of yesterday.  That has 10g protein, 4% Calcium, 80% Vitamin A, 40% Vitamin C, and 15% Iron.  And finally, I have a bag of sunflower kernels, which I just wrote a blog post about actually, if you want to take a look at it here.  There are 9g of protein in those, and 4% calcium.

If we add all of my lunch and afternoon numbers to the table, now we get this:

Nutrient Amount
Protein 62g
Calcium 121%
Vitamin A 214%
Vitamin B12 35%
Vitamin C 646%
Vitamin D 30%
Vitamin E 25%
Iron 75%
Magnesium 50%

Now, as you can see, I easily hit my protein mark, and I haven’t even added dinner in yet.  Since I’m writing this during the day, I haven’t figured out what I’m having for dinner, but it will probably be something like a seitan cutlet or a veggie burger, some wilted spinach, and some fruit, which will increase my Iron to 100%, as well as increase my vitamins A and C most likely.  Depending on the cutlet or burger could also increase my protein, magnesium and vitamin E and D as well.

But, my point is, people are always getting angry and me and telling me that I’m not going to be healthy because I don’t eat meat and I don’t drink milk, so I must have low protein and calcium.  You can see here quite clearly that I easily hit my protein needs of 60g as well as my calcium needs at more than 100%, and this isn’t even all the food I will be eating today.

Just because I eat different foods doesn’t mean I’m not healthy; in fact, I am probably much more healthy than a lot of people in the world.  If I ate a bowl of cereal and milk, do you think I’d hit the numbers I did today?  Even if I had bacon, eggs, and toast, I still wouldn’t be as well off.  All protein doesn’t come from animals, and all calcium doesn’t come from milk.  All vitamins don’t come from pills.  Just because I don’t to take a supplement every day doesn’t mean that I’m not perfectly healthy.  Yes, my B12 is low, so is my Magnesium and my Vitamin D.  But you know, what?  I go outside a lot, which increases my Vitamin D because your epidermis produces vitamin D when exposed to sunlight.  Magnesium and B12 are not required to be healthy, they are basically an added bonus and can make some medical conditions easier.  Medical conditions that I do not have.

So, before people start telling me that I’m unhealthy because I don’t eat meat or dairy, I want them to do the same thing I’ve done here – map out exactly what you eat for the majority of the day.  Then, compare your numbers to mine, and tell me which ones look like they are more healthy.

Until next time, this is RaeynnBeau, signing out.


Vegan Protein and an Iron Chef

Walking from Grand Central to 6th up 45th, I happened to notice this sign on my mad dash to work, and I was really excited, so I ended up taking a picture on my lunch break:


Now, to be fair I didn’t see her on Iron Chef, but I actually really dislike Alex when she’s a judge on Chopped, which is definitely one of my favorite shows on the Food Network.  She always seems needlessly dramatic in a snotty sort of way, and iis unncessarily harsh a lot of the time, even compared to the other judges … Even when she’s giving a compliment it always seems like she’s annoyed or looking down her nose at the contestant she’s addressing.

But then, that’s just my oppinion; she could be a total sweetheart irl, and how would I know? xD

I mean, it’s not like I would probably ever eat at this restaurant anyway because of my dietary restrictions (judging by the name I’d guess it’s not a vegan friendly establishment xD) and it’s probably super $$$, but I thought it was cool that an Iron Chef was opening a restaurant basically next to where I work.  I used to watch the old Ryori no Tetstujin seasons when they aired, mostly because the chairman was awesome xD


I mean, come on – how can you not love that face? xD He always totally cracked me up.  To be fair however, I hear that the Iron Chef America chairman is also pretty entertaining, though I haven’t seen him in action either.  But, since this was the first inage result on Google when I searched for Iron Chef Chairman, I’m thinking what I’ve heard is true.


Look at his eyes; he looks like a cracked out Batman villan that just set his evil plan in motion. xD Or the sidekick from the Green Hornet if he ever went crazy and became evil or something.  Yeah.  ^^;;

Anyway, I promised you a quick Vegan protein tip in this post, and I won’t disappoint! 

I was hungry at lunch today and hummus and baby bell peppers, though delicious, just weren’t turning me on today.  So, I wandered down to the Duane Reade that is basically the first floor of my office building and started looking for something new and exciting to snack on… And while this isn’t a new product by any stretch of the imagination, it was very exciting when I saw the protein content:


What is this magical snack with 9g of protein per serving that is vegan friendly, you ask?  Well, it’s surprisingly not a soy based product, which is normally the reason most vegan food has protein, and it’s not a bagel, though those are high in protein too … Believe it or not, this is actually a bag of sunflower kernels!  (A word to the wise though – these things are defintely NOT braces friendly.  Carry toothpicks or something if you’re going to munch on them with braces, because they’re small enough to get stuck in everything >>;; )


This is just the little snack sized bag I got for a few dollars at Duane Reade, but I’m sure any of them will have within one gram of protein or so of these.  I guess I shouldn’t be surprised, since the sunbutter I eat has a high protein content and it’s made of sunflower kernels as well (sunflower kernels being the delicious inside parts of sunflower seeds), I just didn’t really make the connection I guess.

This whole bag (and it’s a good sized bag – I still haven’t finished them all and I’ve been eating them for the past four hours) is only 250 calories, and with all that protein it’s definitely worth it.  However, I think these ones are salted and toasted, though the bag doesn’t indicate that at all … But it definitely tastes like they’ve been salted three or four times … ^^;; So you’ll definitely want a drink if you decide to indulge in this delicious little snack.

But yeah; those were my two discoveries for today – check back in over the weekend sometime for a recipe on a vegan version of my absolute favorite candy of all time! :3

Eating on a Dime in NYC

ImageAlright; now I know that picture doesn’t seem to have much to do with eating, but this is where the largest chunk of my money goes every month living outside of the city and working in it.  Commuting.  I’ve only worked at my new job for a little while, but I can tell you that it costs $400 per month to catch the train in, which is twice what I used to pay to put gas in my car every week.  It’s a good thing I make more than I used to, but that doesn’t mean money isn’t tight.

Now, I know what you’re thinking – I’m going to tell you to bring food with you instead of buying in the city.  And yes, depending on where you work or live, that is exactly what I’m going to tell you.  I work in Midtown Manhattan, and I see food advertised all the time – $8 here, $12 there.  It is almost twice what it costs in my hometown here to get the same cup of Starbucks for pity’s sake!  (Needless to say, I don’t even have the occasional cup anymore xD)  Now, if you have been following my sparsely updated YouTube channel, you know that I’m really into taking my lunch to work, even before I moved to the Big Apple.  But, the biggest question is, how in the hell do you get all that food (and I do mean all of that food; I take enough to get me through 12 hours) into the city, down the street or in the subway, up the stairs, and into your office?

Well, I am about to blow your mind.  Get ready, and then scroll down and look at this:


This isn’t the one that I have, but it is a cooler on wheels that you pull like carry on luggage.  This baby easily fits a bento along with four or five Tupperware containers, water bottles, and cool packs.  I even have a blanket and pillow I wrap up and stick in here so that I can sleep on the commuter train (since I have to get on a 7am train to get to work by 9, and I don’t get off the train again until 7pm) and be a bit more comfortable while I’m doing it.  And, it really does fit everything I want to bring for food, so I don’t need any snacks or lunch or anything.  Then, I just eat at home, and I am all set for food – no expensive purchases during the day, and I stay full and happy as a bonus!

Today I have red grapes, hummus, carrots, pita, mini bell peppers, a bagel, and dates, and since I drink a smoothie in the morning on my way to/on the train, that usually lasts me literally all day until I get on the train at night.  Just eating when I get hungry really cuts down on how much I eat as well, instead of starving until lunch or the train ride home and gorging on whatever I can get my hands on.

So yeah; fun tidbit for living in NYC; invest in one of these little babies, and you will never have to buy expensive meal foods in the middle of the business district again! Let me know if you want more of these, or if you want me to see if I can scope out less expensive places in the city to eat at?  I’ve been thinking about it,b but I don’t know … let me know your thoughts!