Caryn Hartglass: Choosing Light over Darkness

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caryn-darkand-lightCaryn discusses recovering from the presidential elections; choosing to be in the light and not succumb to the dark; making regular deposits into the “global consciousness”; recipes and food for thought for Thanksgiving.

 

 

 

 

TRANSCRIPTION:

Caryn Hartglass: Hi, everybody. I’m Caryn Hartglass, and welcome to It’s All About Food. Thank you for joining me. It’s been a very difficult two weeks. I don’t know if it has been for you, but it has been for many, many people. I missed last week because we were traveling to California. I’m in California right now. We have some work out here. Two weeks ago when we did the last show, it was Election Day. I was feeling elated and happy, thinking about very positive prospects that were going to be possible for this country and then everything changed. We’re feeling a tremendous amount of darkness for many, many reasons. We know that there are so many terrible things that are going on around the world. They have been for all of our conscious memory and earlier. On this program, we focus on the issues that are related to food. A lot of that is related to the non-human animals that are used for food, and the tremendous pain and suffering and exploitation that these innocent animals go through from birth to death until they end up on our plates. We talk about the impact of eating animals and eating refined junk foods, and how that impacts our health so negatively. We talk about the impact on the environment, our home, planet Earth. How raising billions of innocent animals for food, and that involves growing plants to feed animals to feed people, it takes a tremendous amount or resources. It is also very polluting, draining the environment. We talk about this all the time. There have been many wonderful books written on the subject. For those of us who talk about it and focus on it, it definitely shows a dark side to humanity, but I’ve always kept a very positive outlook that as people become educated, as people learn, as people really discover the truth, they will make better informed choices. We’ve seen a tremendous amount of progress over the last few hundred years in terms of rights, civil rights for people of color, rights for women, eliminating abuses to children, and a lot of these things still exist because we’re not a perfect species. We have a long way to go. This election just felt like a few steps backwards, didn’t it? Where we’ve made so much progress in the last few years with marriage equality. There’s a lot of turmoil. We’ve seen so much turmoil even before the elections with violence within the United States and of course abroad, with our police force, and just so many people that are frustrated and happy, some of which have mental issues and just kind of latch on to the stories that they hear and then go crazy, literally, and cause violence. The election for me, at first, was a moment of hope, a moment of excitement. Women were going to finally break that glass ceiling, and we were going to have a woman president. All of that fell apart.

These last two weeks have been especially difficult as we see who the people are likely to be that are going to be “leading this country.” For the most part, they seem to be people who promote bullying, bigotry, racism, misogyny, sexism, homophobia, white supremacy. It’s really hard. Talking about it is really hard, but I’ve been looking forward to this program because I need to talk about it. I need to talk to you about it because I know all of us, you, my listeners, my wonderful audience, I know that we’re all feeling this. We need to come together as a positive force, a force of love, a force of light, a force of hope. This is not the time to sink into despair. We don’t want to let the dark side take over. I think of some of these sci-fi movies, even like Star Wars, Darth Vader, and, other stories, where we have that visual image of the good person becoming so weak and the goodness being drained out of them by the dark side. We don’t want to do that. We want to focus on the light. For me, I do that with meditation. For those of you who do meditate, I recommend meditating two or three times longer or more often. For those who are struggling right now and don’t mediate, I recommend starting. If you don’t know how or you want some advice, send me an email at info@realmeals.org, and I will send you some helpful information. There is not a whole lot to it. Sure, there are different kinds of meditation. You could take courses, workshops, but you can create your own very simple plan. We all need to do it now because not only will it make us feel better, but I think it will make us more productive, more powerful.

There’s this concept of global consciousness. You can Google ‘global consciousness.’ There’s a few scientists trying to prove global consciousness, and then of course we have the skeptics that are saying that it’s all nonsense. For me, the idea is that there is a greater consciousness outside of our physical bodies that we can all tap into. There’s actually been some good science behind it, but it’s still in its infancy, and it’s very difficult to prove. But whether it’s real or not, I find some solace. I find some peace thinking that a global consciousness exists, and that we can all power into it. Now we can power into it for good and for not-so-good, so we have to be careful. For example, I think before these elections two weeks ago, there was a lot of fear that was fed into the global consciousness, fear of so many things, some of it perhaps justified, some of it not so justified. As a result, that fear grew very strong in the global consciousness, and the result was voting for someone that many people believed would protect them and take care of them and prevent some sort of scary catastrophe, but I think we all know that, I’m not saying that something horrible is going to happen, but I don’t believe that the person that was voted into office by the electoral college will really lead us in any kind of beneficial way. I think that we’re going to take some back-steps with healing the environment and healing the economy and healing our distrust of other people who don’t look like us or people who don’t worship like we worship.

I’m not feeling very positive about that, but I wanted to use this concept of global consciousness for those of us who believe in good, believe in a multi-diverse group of people living in harmony together, where we can benefit from all of our differences and understanding and culture and food. Can’t forget about food because it’s all about food. Where would we be with food if we didn’t intertwine with so many different cultures? We learn so much from the different cultures. As far as humanity goes, there’s only one race, the human race. This whole differentiation between colors, I look forward to that just being gone. We are all the same, and we need to realize that sooner than later because we all want the same thing. We all want good food to eat. We all want clean air to breathe. We all want water to drink, clear, clean water to drink. We all want a positive future for our children, for our families, for ourselves, for future generations.

In this global consciousness, we have an opportunity to tap into it and to invest in it, almost like a bank. I want to focus on putting out into this global consciousness, into this bank, many ideas that are positive, life-affirming, beautiful, harmonious, full of love. In our meditation, we can do that: visualizing putting out into the global consciousness good thoughts that will kind of encapsulate and overwhelm the fear and the darkness that so many people are feeling. We all need to do that, and we will be stronger when we do it together. What I’m asking you is to make a deposit. Make a deposit into the global consciousness and make regular deposits. You know how we have these monthly automatic withdrawals, monthly donations, maybe a daily deposit? A daily positive deposit in to the global consciousness, where we sit back, breathe, think for a moment or two about the good things that you do have. Think for a moment and be grateful, have gratitude, and then make a deposit into the global consciousness. Put an image of something you would like to see on this planet. Something good, something full of love, something nurturing, and do that on a regular basis. I think together, along with a lot of other actions, this can do some good. At the very minimum, it feels good. I think when we feel good, when we feel more peaceful, we can do more and our work will be more productive. If you’re making deposits into the global consciousness, I’d love to hear about it. Please let me know, or maybe I’ll know just by checking in there and feeling you in the global consciousness.

You know that 10 years ago I had advanced ovarian cancer. There are lots of ways that I worked at fighting that disease to survive and thrive, and I discovered something shortly after my first surgery when I woke up in the morning. I would have something that I ultimately named “the belly of dread.” I don’t think I’ve ever mentioned to you my belly of dread. I haven’t talked about it to many people. I had a great childhood, very happy. I loved going to school. My parents were great parents. I had a great older sister, great younger brother, friends. It was pretty idyllic. There were things I wanted that we couldn’t afford, but we had plenty of things. We always had great food to eat, and it was lovely. I grew up, and I went to college. I worked hard, I got some jobs, and I was living the life I wanted to lead. I would get up in the morning, I’m a night owl, so getting up in the morning has always been difficult for me. I kind of like to linger in bed until I’m ready. What works for me now is to do a bit of reading in the morning, and then when I’m really ready, I get up and start the day. But when I was going to school and I had to catch the school bus, that was really hard because I just wasn’t ready, especially since I used to like to stay up really late in my senior year and do homework. I know it sounds nerdy, but back then I wasn’t a vegan, and I remember making these big pots of café au lait and eggs and toast, and I would do my calculus homework when everyone would go to bed. Then it was really hard to get up in the morning. Fast-forward: it’s 10 years ago, and I’m going through my cancer treatment, and every morning I would wake up with the belly of dread. The belly of dread, and I’m sure many of you know what I’m talking about, it’s kind of a sick feeling. For me, the sick feeling, other than having a lot of chemo going through my veins and belly and recovering from surgery, it was more than that. It was this idea that this disease took control of me. It was like a shadow, always present. When is it going to go away? When is it going to come back? A lot of people who have gone through a cancer experience always have this fear of recurrence. It’s this shadow that hovers over you. Sure, we’re all going to die. Nobody gets out of this world alive, but we don’t really think about it until we’re faced with something like a debilitating disease.

It took lots of work, lots of meditation, lots of positive affirmations for that belly of dread to go away. I have to say that I conquered it, and I didn’t have the belly of dread. It took a few years actually, but I could wake up in the morning. Still it takes a long time for me to get going, but I didn’t have that shadow, that darkness. Then two weeks ago, we had the elections, and that belly of dread came back. It’s a little different. The colors are a little different in it, the sensation’s a little different, but it really feels like a kick in the gut, doesn’t it? You know what I’m talking about? I’m really working now on back to focusing on the light and filling myself with love and putting love out there in the world. I’m in repair. I know a lot of us are, but life is short, and we should feel good during this life. Feel good and feel productive and not become prey to this concept that I’m calling the darkness.
It happens to all of us. It just so happens that Thanksgiving is right around the corner. In a couple of days, here in the United States, we’re celebrating Thanksgiving. Wow. Thanksgiving is one fully loaded holiday. Holidays are supposed to be a time of joy and abundance, great food. How come so many of us are surrounded by so much anxiety and emotional stress around Thanksgiving? To start with, let’s just look at the holiday itself. What are we celebrating? It’s a holiday of gratitude, to think about the things that we’re grateful for, but it’s also a holiday packaged with so much hypocrisy. How come humans love to be hypocrites? This is one of those things that I will never, never be able to wrap my head around. We are hypocrites! We’re sitting down to a meal. We are thankful. Some of us may remember the history where the pilgrims had had a really hard time growing food and a difficult winter and then, as the story goes, they learned how to grow food from the Native American Indians, and they had a wonderful harvest and sat down to a great meal. Now we celebrate this every year and the hypocrisy around it. What did we do to the Native American Indians? What are we still doing?
Then there’s the turkey. A long time ago I said, in fact I was quoted in a newspaper once, that I did not want to be part of a Thanksgiving where there was a dead bird on the table. Time goes by, and I still don’t want to be at an event with a dead bird on the table. Unfortunately, things have changed, and I found that I have had to be more accommodating because many of the other people that I participate celebrating this holiday with are not on the same page, and there are many reasons for that. It’s a very difficult holiday. I think about when I was in college. One year I couldn’t come home for Thanksgiving. I had a lot of work, things that I enjoyed doing, and I just decided I’m going to have a simple Thanksgiving. I bought some very large yams, I baked them, and that was my dinner. It was wonderful. It was filling, it was satisfying, there was no expectation, but then since that time, I’ve gotten more focused as a vegetarian activist and as a vegan activist. Thanksgiving is such an important day for vegetarians and vegans who are abstaining from the turkey and other flesh foods and showing that the holiday table can be beautiful and filled with so many satisfying sweet and savory foods that we all can leave the table stuffed without having to slaughter and stuff another living being.

I love to cook and my partner Gary loves to cook. We have all kinds of foods that we love to have on Thanksgiving, the mashed potatoes, the gravy. We have some really wonderful recipes on ResponsibleLivingAndEating.com that I share with people. Sometimes, we like making the cassoulet. It’s a French dish, but I think it’s wonderful for Thanksgiving. It’s made with chickpeas and wine and a mustard sauce and fresh herbs or dried herbs, herbes de provence. It’s easy to make and just is a rich, flavorful dish. Courses can include cornbread. There are many different ways to make cornbread. You can make it gluten-free, you can make it with gluten, you can make it rich, you can make it light: so many different versions depending on what you want. Many great soups, and my favorites are the apple pie and the pumpkin pie. I’ve been working on these recipes for a long time, and I’ve finally gotten them down to the way I like them. Those are the recipes that you can get at ResponsibleLivingAndEating.com with a gluten-free crust that is I think so easy to make. I love these things, and I love having them. I want to have them my way on Thanksgiving, but it doesn’t always happen.

This year, we are in California. We weren’t expecting to be in California. Actually, I kind of swore last year, we were so tired after making a big dinner, that this year we would go to Candle 79 in Manhattan and have Thanksgiving dinner there. I put it on my calendar so that I would remember, and now things changed. We have some business work here in California, so we’re actually here for Thanksgiving and we’ll be with Gary’s family. It’s nice to be with family. Fortunately, the family members support our vegan diet and there will be plenty of vegan food. Not exactly what I want, but here’s the lesson that I just relearned in thinking about Thanksgiving. It’s about control, and I think most of us fall prey to wanting to control in one form or another. For Thanksgiving, I want to control the food that’s being presented or at least the food that’s on my plate, but it’s not always possible. We cannot control anything outside of our own selves. We can control our thoughts. We can control our actions. We can control what we put in our mouths, but we can’t control anyone else. I like to say, just like many people do, it’s a quote, it may or may not have originated from Gandhi, but he gets the credit for it: “Be the change you want to see.” That’s really the best that we can do, be the change ourselves. Getting upset and frustrated because other people are not doing what we want them to do, that doesn’t feel good. I realized that I was struggling with this concept with Thanksgiving coming on, and I just let it go. Fortunately, my meditations help with this process, but what am I getting crazy about? I can have mashed potatoes on another day. The holiday’s made up to begin with.

Gary and I are thinking we may even go out for lunch before we attend the family event there to this wonderful restaurant in San Jose called Vegetarian House. Anybody who’s been to the bay area or lives around here, if you know about it, it’s a wonderful Chinese, I think it’s Chinese, Asian. It’s got different Asian influences in their vegan food, and they are related to the Supreme Master Ching Hai, which many people consider a cult. All that aside, the staff at the Vegetarian House is full of love, such a kind group of people, and the food is fabulous. They are offering a traditional American Thanksgiving dinner, and we just may check that out. I suggest that to you if you’re going to a Thanksgiving event that you are dreading because the food is not going to be what you want to eat. Eat before you go and just sit around and put that love out into the global consciousness. Just envelope everyone in light. It feels better, and I think over the long term, it will make positive change.

So I hope you have a very, very lovely Thanksgiving, and if you’re looking for recipes, if you still haven’t figured out what you want to make, we have plenty of them if you go to the home page of ResponsibleEatingAndLiving.com.  Over on the right, you can click to our Thanksgiving recipes.  There are some classic ones there, even some that are not so classic.  There’s a raw hazelnut cream pie.  It’s so easy to make and really, really yummy.  And a number of other great dishes.  I hope you have a wonderful Thanksgiving.

I wanted to thank the people who wrote to me about purple potatoes.  I had mentioned purple potatoes a few weeks ago when we were in the Miami area.  We went to Josh’s Farmers Market in North Hollywood and bought some purple potatoes that were really purple inside and the most delicious potatoes I’ve ever eaten.  I haven’t been able to find them since, but I have to confess I’m not really looking very hard for them, but a few people have made some recommendations, and I appreciate that.  If you have an opportunity to find purple potatoes, buy them and try them.  Mm!

And don’t forget the three sisters for Thanksgiving.  What a wonderful team, the three sisters: corn, squash, and beans.  They go so well together.  They grow well together.  It’s such a great model, the way the three sisters work: the corn, the beans, and the squash.  They use each other when they grow.  The vines and the stalks use each other for support, for nourishment, and then they’re fruits, the corn, the squash, the beans, go so lovely together in dishes.  So let’s celebrate the three sisters.

Maybe you’ve got some guests coming over for Thanksgiving that will be staying overnight or staying the weekend.  I recommend checking our easy spinach frittata or our recipe that we call Gary’s Special.  These are a couple of our very favorite weekend breakfasts, and they’re easy.  They’re made in a skillet.  They have a nice rustic, hardy feeling.   They go great with potatoes, and you might check them out.  The recipe Gary’s Special is based on a recipe for a dish that Gary used to like a lot that he would get here in San Jose called Joe’s Special, but it’s Gary’s Special because he’s made it his way, and I think that’s a lot better.

Now during Thanksgiving, during this time, while we’re making our daily deposits into the global consciousness, I offer a suggestion to think about the Native Americans and supporters who are mobilizing to block the Dakota Access Pipeline project.  This is a really disturbing event that’s going on and how the local authorities are dealing with these people that are protesting.  I’m sure you know about the Standing Rock Sioux tribe being concerned about the construction of the major crude oil pipeline, which passes through their ancestral lands, and the concerns have to do with a potential spill, which would be catastrophic from an economic point of view and from a cultural point of view.  The other is more of the cultural significance, going through sacred areas, and I would just add your positive thoughts that this goes well and we can come to some compromise that works well for these people.

In other news – I haven’t said this in a while – but sometimes, I like to say every food has its story.  Some of the stories are good.  Some of the stories not so.  Avocados have been getting a bit of press in the last couple of years, and I was reading about it recently, and I thought, ‘Oh, no.  There goes another one of my favorite foods!’  More people are discovering avocados here in the United States and liking them.  What’s not to like?  They’re creamy, rich, full of fat, great travel food.  Ten years ago when I was on an all-raw diet, it was just a wonderful lunch.  You could bring it anywhere.  Just take an avocado, peel it, bite into it.  Wow, delicious.  Sometimes I think, when people ask, “If you were on a deserted island and you could only have one food what would it be?” avocados are right up there in my top ten or five that I would consider.

Well, just like a number of other foods that have become so popular here in the United States, it has a devastating impact on the places that we import avocados from, like Mexico.  And apparently, the growing of avocados for export out of Mexico is causing a lot of deforestation, and farmers are realizing that they can make higher profit from other crops. So what they’re doing is – some are doing it legally, and some are doing it illegally – where they’re planting avocado trees among pine forests and then kind of let the pine trees go and grow the avocados so that they can sell them to us here in the United States.  I haven’t been buying a lot of avocados lately just because the price just seemed to double and triple.  They’re just expensive.  So I’m treating avocados more like a treat now.  Sigh.  I recommend that for many of us because it is linked to deforestation, unfortunately.  It’s just a symbolic representation of the imbalance that we have on so many levels related to our food system, related to our economic system.  If people had a way to make a comfortable living, working hard, doing something beneficial for the community like growing food, but if it was in many ways more equitable, I don’t think we would be having this kind of imbalance, devastation.  We’re seeing deforestation related to many different foods.  Certainly, we’ve heard about deforestation related to growing soybeans in the Amazon rain forest, which are used to feed cattle, which ultimately feed people.  A lot of areas are being deforested to grow palm trees for palm oil, a lot of mono cropping of palm trees.  It seems avocado is added to that list, so all I can recommend is don’t eat as many avocados, but many of us talk about how buying organic food is better than buying local food from an energy standpoint, from an environmental standpoint, that the shipping isn’t as big as this devastating use of pesticides and herbicides and fungicides to grow food.  I want to say that it’s all important, that the ideal is to buy organically grown food that is grown as close to you as possible, so that we can support our own communities, support our local farmers, and not have this devastation take place all over the planet.

Then there are other foods.  We’ve talked about this, where quinoa – quinoa’s a wonderful, ancient grain – and it’s become very trendy and popular here in the United States and in Europe.  The people that used to eat quinoa as a staple, places like Bolivia, now have to eat cheap or refined grain products because they can’t afford their own quinoa.  What we need to do is learn how to grow quinoa here in the United States and make enough of it so that we can feed our own people locally, with locally grown food.  It’s all connected.  Just some food for thought regarding avocados.  Avocados and deforestation.

Let’s talk about some more fun things, like eating good, lovely food.  Before we left for California, we got together with my parents and went to dinner, and we tend to go where they like to go.  They’re older, they’re picky.  Gary and I are younger, and we’re picky!  But we’re accommodating.  They chose this local Italian restaurant, which I really don’t like.  I don’t like it on a number of levels.  I find that the quality of the food is really poor.  It’s a simple, little – primarily a pizza place.  You order at the counter and bring it to a table.  I’ve been there only once before actually, and I thought in my mind, ‘Okay, when I eat there, I will eat something as simple as possible so that I don’t have to question what’s in it.’  I ordered a big arugula salad, and it was really stunning when it came.  It came with tomatoes and artichoke hearts.  It also came with some balsamic dressing on the side, which was goopy and thick and gelatinous, and I just left it there on the side – but it was terrible.  The arugula was so, so bitter.  I love arugula, but I’m spoiled because I buy it organic, and I buy it from farms that I trust.  I have no idea who grew this arugula.  All I know is it was horrible.

Then Gary, he wanted to get a simple pizza, and it was a little challenging because he didn’t want it with cheese of course, and the marinara sauce was also suspect.  I think they put cheese in it, so he was just asking for a simple pie dough crust with vegetables.  Come on, anybody knows that’s focaccia.  That’s Italian.  It’s a respectable dish but it was kind of a struggle for these folks.  “You want pizza with sauce and no cheese?”  It turns out they had a large, vegetable pie on the menu.  I don’t think anybody ever ordered it.  Gary ordered it, and he didn’t want such a big pie, but he went with it, and it took a really long time to get it.  I have a feeling they had to go out and shop for the vegetables, maybe even grow the vegetables!  Shop for them and then chop them and prepare them.  The result was stunning, I have to admit.  It was a beautiful, beautiful pizza.  You can see it at ResponsibleEatingAndLiving.com at my blog What Vegans Eat.  I’m not sure what day it was, What Vegans Eat.  Let’s see.  Anyway, you’ll see it again because he couldn’t eat all of it.  It went into the freezer when we got home.  Here it is – Day 642.  Really stunning.  Lots of zucchini and spinach.  A beautiful, beautiful work of art.

Now we’re getting ready, for you, for future holidays.  We like to – We’re continually adding more resources at the Responsible Eating And Living website, so that means we’ll do a food show from time to time, we’ll add more recipes, and we’re adding to a rich digital collection of information that’s timeless.  We did years ago a food show for Thanksgiving, and we posted because that’s our tradition.  Those recipes are good to make every year, creating a new tradition.  Well, something that Gary’s been wanting to make for a long time is panettone, and for those of you that aren’t familiar with panettone, it’s a rich egg bread that’s filled with dried fruit, and it typically comes in a cylindrical shape.  It’s flat on top, but it’s like a cylindrical tube.  You’ve probably seen them in the stores around Christmastime.  They come in big, red boxes usually.

Well, Gary played around and made the most amazing panettone.  Now he did use wheat flour, so this is not a gluten-free recipe, but we will be making a gluten-free version sometime.  You can probably simply substitute gluten-free flour, but because this is a yeast bread.  Those of you who do gluten-free baking know that yeasted bread rising works differently than wheat bread rising, but in this recipe he used einkorn all-purpose flour.  Einkorn is this heirloom heritage, traditional, not hybridized wheat grain.  Wow, is it flavorful.  Really, really wonderful.  He used aquafaba, which is that miracle bean water, which you can find in a can of beans and used to whip up – I like to say into a frenzy – it whips up into meringue, so it can make some wonderful, fluffy baked goods.  We have a number of cake recipes that use the dried fruit, and I don’t know if you’ve ever tried to make one of these fruit cakes, but they sell some pretty disgusting candied dry fruit that you’re supposed to use in your fruit cakes, and they’re filled with artificial colors and lots of sugar.  We decided to make our own recipes that use dried, organic, unsulfured fruits that are colorful, like papaya, which is orange, and mango, which is light yellow-orange, and pineapple.  These are naturally lovely, chewy, sweet fruits that you can chop up into small pieces and use in any recipes that call for these candied fruits, and they’re just so much better.

In addition to that, Gary knew he going to be working on his panettone recipe, and we had a lot of lemons and lemon peels and oranges and orange peels.  I like to juice the lemon peel, the lemon with the peel usually, in my juice, so I use the whole thing, and I get the benefit of the flavonoids.  But for some reason, we had a lot of extra peels.  We don’t like wasting food and, unfortunately, we don’t have a compost pile, so the stuff that we don’t eat goes in the garbage.  Well, Gary decided he would keep handy some lemon and orange peels knowing he would use them in his panettone, so we have a few jars at home in the refrigerator of homemade candied lemon peel and candied orange peel.  They’re part of this recipe, but you can use any candied fruit or dried fruit in its place, but the recipe’s really lovely.  If you like baking, you might try it plain with this one.  We made a big one, and we made some small ones, and they make nice little stocking stuffers and gifts for people.  How about that?

So there has been actually some good news going on, and I always like to share good news.  You may have heard just a few days ago the National Organic Standards Board, the 15-member stakeholder body that advises the U.S. Department of Agriculture on issues related to organic food production, voted 10-3 to remove carrageenan from a list of allowed nonorganic substances.  Now personally – I may be wrong – but I’m not that concerned about carrageenan.  I don’t really consume it very often.  I have used it.  I bought a jar of carrageenan – it’s a white powder – and I’ve used it to make some vegan cheeses from time to time.  I know it appears a lot in nondairy milks, and I don’t buy those milks that contain carrageenan.  I prefer to buy soy milk that contains just soybeans and water, but there are many nondairy milks that contain carrageenan.  Now if a nondairy is going to be listed as organic, it can’t have carrageenan.  Carrageenan is a substance extracted from some seaweeds, and it’s used for thickening and stabilizing, but it is linked to – maybe linked is not the right word – but some people are connecting it to inflammatory bowel disease, intestinal inflammations.  These are things that are becoming more and more prevalent, so carrageenan will be off the list.  I think we’ll still see it up until the end of 2018, unless they make some changes by then, but it just means that somebody’s listening.  Somebody’s listening to our whining and moaning and complaining.  So I want to encourage you.  Keep doing it!  Keep complaining!  Keep making demands to make things better for everyone, and that means talking to your grocery store manager about some of the foods you would like to see and why you don’t want to see some other ones.  Those managers, they’re busy, and they don’t know everything.  They’re trying to do a good job, so you can help them out.  Say “Hey, I love shopping at this store, but I would love to see this product and not this product” and give an educated reason why not.  We’re all a part of a community, and we need to help each other.

I just want to go back to Thanksgiving for a moment and remind you to be mindful, wherever you are, whoever you may be eating with, whether you’re alone or with a group of people you love, a group of people that you love and may feel uncomfortable around, a group of people that you don’t know very well.  Be mindful when you’re eating.  What are the voices in your head?  What are you saying to yourself?  “Oh, my god, I shouldn’t be eating this much food!  Oh, I’m having too many desserts!  Oh, this isn’t good for me.  It’s not organic!”  Those are not the voices that I recommend while eating.  While eating, be mindful.  Tell yourself how fortunate you are to have these foods, and that your body knows what’s good and will take the good from those foods and let the rest go.  Will you do that for me?  Be mindful and let other people know your gratitude.  It’s contagious.  Something I noticed right after the election walking down the street in New York, I wasn’t the only one feeling gloomy.  But I smiled and I looked people in the eye, and we can all do that.  We can all acknowledge everyone else in our community with a smile.  It doesn’t cost anything, and it feels really good, and it’s contagious.  You kind of will bring people out of that darkness that they’re sinking into, that belly of dread, the voices that are bringing us down.  When we see a glowing, happy smile, wow, wake up!  Come into the light!  We want you here.  We need you here.  So please don’t forget to smile, and look at everyone with love.  Be mindful during Thanksgiving and every day of the year.  At the very least, it will make you feel good.  Okay?  All right.  So thank you so much for joining me today.  You can find me, again, at ResponsibleEatingAndLiving.com and send me comments and questions to info@realmeals.org.  I always love hearing from you and if you have any comments or questions about Thanksgiving or anything, food-related or not food-related, I’m happy to hear from you, and I will respond as soon as I can.  Thank you for joining me today on It’s All About Food!  Have a very wonderful Thanksgiving wherever you may be, whoever you may be, and whomever you are with.  Have a delicious Thanksgiving and have a delicious week.  Thank you.

Transcribed by Lydia Dearie, 2/16/2017 and Jessica Roman, 12/2/2016

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