Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Submissions and Opinions

First, I want to put out a quick THANK YOU to everyone who has sent in submissions. I've got over a hundred fabulous, inspiring photographs and emails so far -- you guys rock! Please don't be sad if you don't see your submission posted right away -- there are a lot to get through. I'm having a great time going through all the contributions, so please, please keep 'em coming!

Secondly, two questions have arisen in my mind regarding some of the submissions, and I want your help deciding the direction the blog will be going.

1. Some submissions include white rice. My first instinct is to shy away from white rice, as it isn't a whole grain. But except for the fact that white rice is used, these photographs are quite lovely and inspirational. Do you want to see them, knowing that you can substitute brown rice if you make the dish, or should we stick to brown rice only?

2. Some submissions are including small amounts of dairy. A sprinkle of cheese here, a bit of nonfat yogurt there ... what are your thoughts? For some people a plant-based meal with a sprinkle of cheese is surely a step in the right direction, and it might be nice to encourage them in that direction. But dairy isn't health food, and from a vegan standpoint, it's a bit hard to see, isn't it? Should the blog stay vegan, or should we allow predominantly plant-based dishes with an added bit of dairy?

These polls are going to end in exactly one week, so please vote.

Raw Vegan Coleslaw

I'm getting so many gorgeous submissions from the raw community! I've added "raw" as a label to posts to make them easier to group together, for all you raw fans.

(submitted by Alison)

Heirloom Tomato Salad

From Victoria, a colorful heirloom tomato salad. "The green tomato is fully ripe -- that variety of tomato is green and striped and I think it looks so pretty, especially with the purple onion."

So elegant!

Monday, March 30, 2009

I Can't Wait for Summer, part 1

Pictures that make me long for summer, from Brandie Werner, Registered Yoga Teacher:

"These are pics of the produce from our local/organic co-op.

"My 2-year-old, Isaiah, loves to help me unpack the bin and eat the yummy fruits and veggies!"

Half-Marathon #5

Wallis sent this one in to get us all moving on a Monday morning: "Here is a pic of my husband, Joe, running his 5th half-marathon. He started running three years ago, and averages 20-30 miles a week. Last year he ran 1100 miles! He started running at age 43; previously he practiced yoga for 3 years. He still occasionally does yoga, but loves being outside in the fresh air, getting his blood pumping!"

Yoga in Peru

Terez from Stethoscopes and Sneakers writes, "I love the website, and as a fourth year medical student with an interest in global health who spent the entire year traveling (a new city or country every two months!), finding ways to eat and be healthy (and vegetarian) on the road was a huge challenge. I did my best to practice yoga whenever and wherever I could; here is a shot of a yoga class I led for my roommates on the porch of our hostel in the Peruvian rainforest."

Friday, March 27, 2009

Cheez Please Soup

A smooth "cheesy" soup made from white beans, carrots, and nutritional yeast, filled with steamed cauliflower and mixed frozen vegetables. The recipe is from Ultimate Uncheese.

Grilled Veggies Salad

Another great submission from Suzi...

"I grilled veggies to put on a nice salad."

Fruit Platter

Suzi sent in this picture of a fruit platter she served for breakfast while entertaining guests. The "hedgehogs" are champagne mangoes (note adorable blueberry eyes.)

Suzi writes, "I am constantly photographing the healthy foods I make, so I'm really glad you have 'This Is Why You're Thin' ... I feel less weird!"

Hooray for healthy weirdness! Keep the photos coming! :-)

Inspiration from Hong Kong

Claire writes: "My daughter lives in Hong Kong, and in December I went to visit her. One thing that impressed me there was the abundance of simple exercise equipment in all the parks.... and the number of people who unashamedly used them daily! The culture of exercise is well-ingrained. This photo was taken in Macao, and is representative of the fun and healthy choices... we had to try them all! Oh, and speaking of healthy choices..... there are so many Buddhist (vegan) restaurants in Hong Kong, it's way easier to eat than any other place I've traveled."

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Plantae Enchilada Burrito

(from Jenn Blumberg, who has the whole recipe for you at Hello Veggie)


(from Gretchen Goel at Total Wellness Mentor)

Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Growing greens

"Here's a photo of my husband, picking salad green from our window box."

(from carolyn, who is impatiently waiting for summer)

Sprout Salad

A summer farmer's market salad, all local from Salt Spring Island, BC, Canada: spinach, pea shoots, mixed bean sprouts, peanut sprouts, purple broccoli, and mixed lettuces.

Wrapping salad in rice paper and dipping into dressing is a great way to shake up your salad routine:

(submitted by Gabrielle)

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

Thai Food

(photo by vegan chef Margaret Hazeltine)

Rock Climbing

Raw Vegan Breakfast for Five

From Sheri Fischer at Green and Crunchy, here's a typical raw breakfast for her and her family. She writes, "I am a raw vegan mama and I am raising 5 little raw vegan kiddos. I spend a LOT of time in the kitchen :)

"On the plates, clockwise from top, we have one organic orange, one groovy green smoothie, a handful of walnut pieces, a homemade raw energy bar (we call them Earth Bars), a scoop of frozen organic wild blueberries, and a steel ramekin of our supplements (vitamin D, B12, and vegan DHA/EPA)."

Times by five:

I'm not raw, Sheri, but you can make my breakfast any day!

Monday, March 23, 2009

Nordic Walking

Our first exercise post, hurray! And it's even an exercise I've never heard of before. Here a picture of Karen Peissinger-Venhaus taking a break while Nordic walking.

She writes, "As you can see, I am not thin. But, when I exercise, I feel thin; that is, I feel healthy and able."

Right on, Karen! That's what it's all about -- feeling fit, healthy, and able.

Post-Run Salad

Speaking of blood oranges, Jay made and devoured this salad after a 19 mile run:

the salad ingredients:
1 head of red leaf lettuce
1/2 a pineapple
4 kiwis
2 blood oranges
1/4 lb of kumquats

the dressing:
2-3 tbsp of raw tahini
2-3 tsp of raw agave
juice of half a lemon
water until thin enough to be a dressing

Blood Orange Salsa

Blood Orange Salsa (with some lovely avocado & tortillas in the background)

(submitted by Melissa Trachtenberg)

Thursday, March 19, 2009


Hi there! Nice day to sunbathe in fruit, don't you think?

So, what's this all about? Well, as you may know, the website This Is Why You’re Fat is getting a lot of press lately. Obviously it’s meant to be funny and outrageous – people send in their craziest junk-food creations and we all groan and laugh. Bacon-topped Krispy Kremes for everyone!

I think the blog is brilliant. Honestly, it IS funny. But in the past few weeks I’ve noticed that a lot of people talking about the site are saying the same thing:

"It’s so gross, but now I want some."

"Eeeew! Oh, I bet that tastes good."

"That’s a heart attack waiting to...mmmm, bacon."

Isn’t that interesting? At the same time that we’re appalled, these images are sinking into our little monkey minds and triggering cravings for these kinds of foods. (Who doesn’t love a deep-fried somethin’ on a stick?) Perhaps we even feel a sense of community and warped pride in this type of county-fair, deep-fried, all-American garbage.

(It reminds me of my favorite Bill Bryson quote: "Clearly, some time ago makers and consumers of American junk food passed jointly through some kind of sensibility barrier in the endless quest for new taste sensations. Now they are a little like those desperate junkies who have tried every known drug and are finally reduced to mainlining toilet bowl cleanser in an effort to get still higher." America, hurrah!)

So I started thinking, what if, instead of looking at images of junk food every day, we served ourselves up a daily helping of healthy images instead? Can healthy images trigger the same reaction but in reverse? Can they inspire us to better health, make us crave a colorful salad, or help us get to the gym?

That’s why I created This Is Why You’re Thin!

The goal of this site will be to encourage exercise and the consumption of healthy plant-based foods through fun, intriguing, and beautiful images that will inspire us all. I’m looking for inspiring photos or video links of the things you do for health: pictures of fresh fruits and vegetables ... beautiful bean soups or hearty wholegrain bread ... people running, climbing, swimming, stretching ... smiling kids drinking smoothies and picking strawberries. Find out how to contribute by clicking here.

Please contribute and help spread the word!