REAL Co-founder, Gary De Mattei is back to join Caryn Hartglass and muse on a variety of themes including Veggie Pride, Food Addictions, Nut and Seed Butters on Corn Thins at Midnight and a lot more!
Since 2009, It’s All About Food, has been bringing you the best in up-to-date news regarding food and our food system. Hosted by Caryn Hartglass, a vegan since 1988, the program includes in-depth interviews with medical doctors; nutritionists; dieticians; cook book authors; athletes; environmental, animals and health activists; farmers; food manufacturers; lawyers; food scientists and more. Learn about how we can solve many of the world’s problems today and do it deliciously, here on It’s All About Food.
Hello everybody! I’m Caryn Hartglass and welcome to It’s All About Food. How are you today, everybody?
It’s April. And it’s my birthday month. So let’s celebrate. I think everybody should celebrate for an entire month when their birthday comes around. Why not? Why just one day? Right? So, let’s start celebrating. And we’re going to be celebrating something else today and that is the tenth anniversary of my partner, Gary De Mattei, the real co-founder, Responsible Eating And Living’s named co-founder. He is celebrating 10 years vegan. So we’re going to be having some vegan musings today with Gary De Mattei! Gary!
Gary De Mattei: Hi Caryn. Happy…
Caryn Hartglass: Congratulations.
Gary De Mattei: Thank you. Happy Birthday month, to you! When is your birthday?
Caryn Hartglass: A very happy birthday month, to me! To me! It’s Earth – it’s on Earth Day! Everybody knows that.
Gary De Mattei: April 22nd. How did that happen?
Caryn Hartglass: That’s right. How did that happen?
Gary De Mattei: How did one of the greatest protectors of the earth end up having their birthday on Earth Day?
Caryn Hartglass: Well, I don’t want to go into the details about how I was conceived and born. But, Earth Day was named a bunch of years after I was born. So, I wasn’t born on Earth Day – Earth Day was named on my birthday. I came first.
Gary De Mattei: And why did you become a vegan? I’m going to interview you a little bit, while you interview
Caryn Hartglass: Okay. Well, everybody knows why. Because I say it all of the time. I had this epiphany as a teenager that what was on my plate was really a ‘who’, and I didn’t want to eat animals. It was that simple. You know, I was having all kinds of realizations when I was a teenager. Now, people know I’m not religious, but I did have a Bat Mitzvah; I did go through Hebrew school and had that religious training and stuff. And at my Bat Mitzvah ceremony I gave a talk, and I wish I still had that talk. I don’t think it was very coherent; I was very confused at the time, not understanding how people could go hungry. I just didn’t get it. And you know what? I don’t, I still don’t get it.
Gary De Mattei: Right.
Caryn Hartglass: I don’t understand exploitation; I don’t understand why people would want to benefit knowing they’re harming other people, other non-human animals, and the environment. I don’t get it.
Gary De Mattei: Well, I think many of us feel the same way and you certainly led the way for me and your influence was something that opened the door for me 10 years ago and that’s why I took the plunge – because of all of the good information that you have been giving in your own non-judgmental way.
Caryn Hartglass: Thank you, Gary.
Gary De Mattei: So I want to thank you for that.
Caryn Hartglass: I wanted to say first that, for the last 10 years you have been very humble about your transition into being a vegan; and you always say that you are a novice. And you are no longer a novice after doing this for 10 years. I would say you’re an expert.
Gary De Mattei: I am! Yes I am. Well, I think, you know, whatever it takes -whatever it took to get me vegan, I owe all to you. And the information that you gave me and you didn’t, really force anything on me – you just basically said, “Well if you are interested, there’s a ‘this’ that’s out there.” And I know that one of the books that you gave me to read was John Robbins‘ ground-breaking book, which we heard talked about again at the Veggie Pride Parade, which I know we are going to talk about, a couple of days ago, which was Diet for a New America, which he wrote in the ’80s, right?
Caryn Hartglass: ’87. 1987.
Gary De Mattei: Which a lot of people read. And so it was one of the books I read 10 years ago, that you hipped me to; the other one was The Way of the Peaceful Warrior which is a ‘woo-woo, waa-waa’ book, by Dan Millman; I later learned that John Robbins and Dan Millman are friends, which is a neat connection there. And so all of these books that I then read which subsequently made me go full vegan, summed it up like this for me: and that was the thing – and if I can pass anything on to anybody out there that’s listening, that’s thinking about whether or not they want to do this, one of the things that started me before all of the other doors opened, was how eating meat affects the environment. And so something that I picked up from that, and these facts are all backed up: these are true facts – these aren’t alternative facts – a person who is vegan will save 1100 gallons of water, 20 pounds of CO2 equivalent, 30 square feet of forested land, 45 pounds of grain, and one sentient animal’s life – every day. And that was the thing that connected with me. And then I went on to learn that by becoming vegan we refuse to become complicit in the torture of billions of animals for corporate profit and can have the well documented health benefits associated with a plant-based diet, especially in the areas of heart disease and cancer. When the environment kicked in, I started to learn about the torture of billions of animals for corporate profit and one thing led to another, and to another, and to another, has led to you and I starting Responsible Eating and Living, after your battle with cancer.
All of that is because I fell in love with you and wanted to know more about why it was that you did what you did. And so my recommendation for everyone out there is: Fall in love with a vegan.
Caryn Hartglass: Yeah -fall in love with a vegan who can cook. And it’s great that you cook, as well, because we’ve become amazing partners. I learn from you; you learn from me. You’re the one with the technique and I’m the one who’s just been doing it for a long time.
Gary De Mattei: Right. You have a lot of technique yourself. As a matter of fact, you’ve been quoted as – you haven’t been quoted – but there are people talking about you out there as ‘one of the top vegan chefs around’ and you have the recipes to prove it at Responsible Eating and Living. And so you have a lot of technique in your own right.
Caryn Hartglass: Okay. So.
Gary De Mattei: Mutual Admiration Society Day.
Caryn Hartglass: Yes. Absolutely. Let me remind everyone we are tuning in live – this is live. If you’re listening to it live; we’re also tuning in love. Now, whether you are listening live or listening later, you can always tune in love. And that’s one thing I love about this program. We are tuning in love right now and trying to spread it around because love is…
Gary De Mattei:
We are messengers. We are messengers of love. And that’s really what it’s about. It’s about love.
Caryn Hartglass: Yes. Love is all you need.
Gary De Mattei: Loving everything.
Caryn Hartglass: When you connect the dots and sprinkle love all over it, you can’t go wrong!
Gary De Mattei: And love is truth. Truth is love.
Caryn Hartglass: Back to what I was saying when I was a teen ager, not understanding all that was wrong in the world and now at soon to be 59 years old on my birthday, I still don’t understand. And it really can drive a person crazy. The only way that I find peace where I can focus on joy is by not buying into that; by not supporting it; by doing whatever I can in my life and in our life to not support exploitation and the easiest thing is choosing what’s on your plate: it’s clear.
Gary De Mattei: Right. And that’s why this show is called It’s All About Food. Because it truly is all about food. Everything is connected to what it is that we put on our plate, what we consume. And there are lots of people out there who would like to only think of us as consumers, not as citizens. And that’s a very scary reality, but fear is something that we all have to overcome in order to see the truth. And that’s one of the things I learned by being not only – at a very young age, getting into the Arts. Because as I’ve mentioned to you before in conversation, I have had a real problem with reality. And yet the irony with that is I am a reality junkie. But it has to be put through a filter and the filter, for me, has always been theater. Not to be confused with entertainment, because that’s a whole different subject, and that goes along with the numbing of our society, to numb them with entertainment. But the actual, real definition of theater, the definition that Western theater is based on, which can be found in William Shakespeare’s Hamlet, in the speech, in his speech to the players where he does that great speech about, to the players, where he says, “Speak the speech, I pray thee, trippingly on the tongue.” And essentially what he says is, “Hold a mirror up to society: that’s your job.” And so Western civilization has based its theater on that speech and so that’s how it has become. That’s how I’ve been able to survive, by looking at the world through the eyes of the great playwrights. And to overcome fear is to be able to see that it’s all about finding the truth.
We were talking about this yesterday – about what you had said in your speech of truth on the stage of Veggie Pride Parade: you hit on something that I think we need to talk about, and we’ll talk about the Veggie Pride Parade with that as well, and that is – in this world of alternative facts and lies, which everyone seems to be becoming more aware of, vegans have had to face lies for centuries. Vegetarians and vegans; about what is good for you and what isn’t good for you, and what you should be eating in order to sustain life. And the reality behind that is really what vegans have had to try and present to the world. Of course they get beaten down and come fighting back in their own ways. But the message there is, “We have had to face these untruths, these alternative facts, for centuries and so it’s nothing new to us.
Caryn Hartglass: No. And at the Veggie Pride Parade, which took place on Sunday, it was the tenth annual parade in Manhattan. I interviewed the organizer and founder of the Manhattan Veggie Pride Parade, Pamela Rice, last week. You may have heard that one. Yeah, Pamela!!
Gary De Mattei: Yeah, Pamela!!
Caryn Hartglass: There were a number of people who came up to our table and wondered if there was any science behind any of this and actually, I think there’s more scientific in the medical literature: the journals, the peer review journals – on the power of plant foods than on animal foods, just because plant foods are, indeed, so much healthier for humans. And more people have been focusing on this activist that wanted to promote the vegan agenda. For example, Dr. Michael Greger, he wasn’t originally a medical doctor, but then he realized that his message would be more powerful if he had a medical degree.
Gary De Mattei: Yeah, Michael!
Caryn Hartglass: And he became a doctor and he has this great website with all kinds of information about nutrition facts. And it’s true: we have a great respect for medical doctors – whether they deserve it or not, because many of them don’t.
Gary De Mattei: Right. Many of them don’t. You’re right.
Caryn Hartglass: Many of them don’t, but the science is overwhelming about the power of plant foods to prevent reverse heart disease; prevent reverse diabetes; to reduce the risk of cancer; to help heal auto-immune diseases; to reduce the symptoms and sometimes even reverse the symptoms of Multiple Sclerosis; and a variety of auto-immune diseases; rheumatoid arthritis; and the list goes on and on, it’s endless. And yet the medical establishment still doesn’t know this; although I want to think that the younger doctors are getting the message, more and more.
Gary De Mattei: You want to think that, but it’s too few. And there is still an overwhelming cover-up going on. Everybody’s talking about this cover-up now going on in politics today with the possibility of Russian hacking; but there have been these incredibly corrupt cover-ups going on for, as I mentioned, hundreds of years, with what it is that we eat. And we walk through life thinking that it’s normal to choose to eat what is killing us.
Caryn Hartglass: You know, I remember reading in Dr. T Collin Campbell’s The China Study all of the challenges that he went through over the decades dealing with government panels and committees and always recommending a whole food, plant-based diet and having all of these other people roll their eyes, laugh, reject him; and slowly the information is creeping out because it’s just so powerful. And next week, on Its All About Food, I have Dr. Neil Barnard back on the show – from the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine. He has a new book out called, The Cheese Trap.
Gary De Mattei: You were reading me some excerpts of that and I don’t want to be, spoiler alert, because I want you all to go out and buy the book, but some of these things are incredible.
Caryn Hartglass: Especially the information about things that we know; the science about how dairy and cheese, especially, are so devastating to our health; and how they cause asthma and increase the risk of cancer and rheumatoid arthritis and acne. A whole host of problems.
Gary De Mattei: Because you were saying, and this is something that you and I have discussed over the years, they’re basically – cheese is addicting, there are addicting properties in cheese. There are opioids in cheese – there’s something in cheese that is as horrific to our bodies as some illegal drugs on the street. And yet it’s something that’s subsidized by the government. And that’s the influence of money and industry on politics; and this is a huge industry; and the “Ag-gag” orders alone, push people back down into submission and force them to eat these things. One of the clichés – it’s not a cliché because – one of the common quotes that vegans use and vegetarians use is that, “If slaughterhouses had glass walls, every single one of us would be a vegan.” And I don’t know – I’m paraphrasing that quote and it’s been said by a few people and they each take credit for it – so you can look it up yourselves, but it’s true. And now it’s against the law, and people are prosecuted and thrown in jail for filming what goes on in slaughterhouses. But as I mentioned earlier, the thing that got me to go vegan was the environmental impact and then all of these other things started to kick in and – it’s scary, but you’ve got to fight the fear.
Caryn Hartglass: Well I just want to bring back to where you started on all of this: a lot of people are very focused, now, on what’s going on with the government in the United States, alternative facts, fake news. Every day is worse than the next; all these things that are being signed into law and laws that are being turned around that are devastating to the environment, animals, people. We as vegans and vegetarians have experienced this for a very long time.
Gary De Mattei: Exactly. And so, what can you do?
Caryn Hartglass: You listen to Progressive Radio Network and the It’s All About Food Show because we are here to tell the truth.
Gary De Mattei: Right. And that was one thing that was in your talk: that we are all about, and the reason we started this organization, was because there are so many alternative facts, even before alternative facts became a trending topic on Twitter and Face Book. But there are so many alternative facts out there about what you put in your mouth and we decided that we would do all of the heavy lifting; we’d do the deep digging, and we’d come out with the facts for you, so that you have a place to go when you are not sure. And trusting us because we’re not in this for money; obviously, we’re not in profit and we rely solely on grants and donations and that’s what we do. But there are so many people out there that are saying what needs to be said that we then find for you and through this program, It’s All About Food, you have over how many interviews now with experts in the plant based food movement?
There are hundreds of them. I started in 2009 and it’s been eight years and many shows have two interviews during the program. So there are lot of them! Hundreds! And most of them are still current news – even if the programs are seven or eight years old. Most of this stuff is still true and new to most people.
Gary De Mattei: Right. Exactly. Well, some of the facts that I’ve learned by listening to your show over the years and by living with you over the years, is what we chose to eat is killing us and our planet. And so it makes sense to then choose the things that don’t kill us quicker than, you know we all – none of us are going to get out of this alive, as you’ve mentioned many times on this show and in your talks around the country and the world. We can choose to live a happy, healthy life, free from a lot of these diseases that you’ve been talking about. So if your ego is of; if you have an ego, which all of have an ego; and it drives you into trying to be the best person that you can be, and live as long as you can, then simply stop eating animals. I was a hundred plus pounds heavier ten years ago, before I started this plant based life style. And I dropped a hundred pounds or so: I stopped weighing myself, I stopped talking about diets because it’s not a diet, it’s a lifestyle. And it’s so easy if you just think about it as, “What’s Gary’s diet?” if you want to use the word ‘diet’. “Gary’s diet” is ‘don’t eat anything from an animal. Don’t drink anything from an animal.’ And you are going to start losing weight, immediately. And feeling a lot better. That’s the ‘diet.’ Now, sure, I could write a book and I could have a bunch of recipes in it and I could have a bunch of blah-blah-blahing about my philosophy; but it would all be – the essence of it would all be, ‘stop eating animals stuff, drinking anything from an animal – go vegan.’
And if you don’t like that word, ‘vegan’, come up with a better word.
Caryn Hartglass: Call it whatever you want.
Gary De Mattei: Because words are just made up. You can listen to my gesticulation now and not have to understand a word of English and you’ll get that I’m passionate about this and it’s coming from the heart. A lot of times I say to you in passing and private moments, “I don’t know why we want to spread this message. We should just keep it to ourselves because it really works, it’s like the Holy Grail and it’s like the ring in The Lord Of The Rings and it’s something we should covet.” And you’ve always said, “No, no, no. We’ve got to share this message. People out there need it. They want it.” And I’m selfishly saying, “No they don’t want it. Let them all go eat whatever they want.” But of course that doesn’t last long. Because it’s all about love. And it’s all about tuning in love and we all have moments of closing our heart. Right? We all do – we all have these moments where we say, “I’m going to shut down my heart and I’m going to be mean today; and I’m going to be nasty today; and I’m going to be angry today.” But, not to sound like Mr. Rogers here – whom I love – we have to keep our hearts open. And keeping our hearts open is understanding that being a vegan, or whatever you want to call it, being a plant-based eater or I mean, it’s just insulting to go any further with this – is to keep your heart open and to know that all things that live – deserve to live. And a lot of people need to feel better about eating meat so they adopt a pet. And that’s great; that’s wonderful; that’s terrific! But then they’ll go out and they’ll have a steak dinner or they’ll go eat some lamb or they’ll have ham at Easter time. And they are missing the point! And they are missing the point, but they think; they’ve been given the wrong information! They’ve been told lies. And a lot of people look at owning a pet as the same as…
Caryn Hartglass: Being an animal lover?
Gary De Mattei: Yes. Being an animal lover. And sure, you are an animal love when you have a pet, and you do take care of that pet, and you are a lovely person for doing it. But there are other living beings out there that you refuse to put in that same category, as your pet. And I’m asking you to put all animals in the same category as you would put your dog or your cat or your canary. And then realize that every one of those living beings deserves the same amount of love that you give your pet. That’s it. And that’s what I learned from going vegan. Now remember, I didn’t start this way. I was fed the same information that everyone else is fed and was a big meat eater. But it was killing me, faster than I’m going to eventually die. And so there are a lot of people that feel owning a pet is a form of slavery. It’s keeping your pet – it’s keeping this being from living its life. And they have pets, as well, because we’ve got – we’ve already done the damage. There are millions and millions of animals who have been domesticated who need homes. And so we are doing the best we can.
Caryn Hartglass: The ones that I take issue with are the non-human animals that are bred to look a certain way. For those domesticated animals that need homes because they’ve been abused or whatever, I think it’s wonderful that people take them in and those are the kinds of companion animals that people should have in their homes. But the ones that are specifically bred to be pets and to be cute and adorable and to be trained – I take issue with that because it’s a form of slavery and breeding is a form of rape and these adorable animals don’t get to live with their mommies and daddies and brothers and sisters, and make friends and live as nature intended them to.
Gary De Mattei: And well you should! You should feel that way, but a lot of people are going to take offense to that. And I understand that because I understand what it is to love something so much that you refuse to see that there could be another side of that. As I mentioned, the damage is done. We have millions and millions and millions of animals, whether they are bred for being cute or not, that are out there that need homes. And a lot of people just give up on their pets and there they are; they are in shelters – thank goodness for the shelters. But they need homes. I ‘m not saying we should not adopt pets – no – but I’m also saying, and this is something that I’ve learned over the years – you need to look at all animals the same way. And they all want to stay as long as they can with their moms and dads. What we do to cattle and calves and ripping them away from their mothers and hearing their screams, which is out there and people refuse to believe, but it’s true. It happens. And it’s a horrific world when you look at it like that. And so all of this alternative facts non-sense, which we are hearing now, which is not nonsense – we are being lied to again, but we’ve been lied to from the very beginning. In horrific ways; and people have profited from lying to us; and animals have been destroyed because we’ve been lied to. And so people then say, “Well, what do we do? I can’t just stop eating cheese!”
Caryn Hartglass: Yes you can!
Gary De Mattei: Ten years ago I stopped eating cheese; but there are a lot of alternative cheeses out there – but you can’t call cheese, you have to call cultured nuts.
Caryn Hartglass: In California you have to call it Cultured Nuts.
Gary De Mattei: Well how do I stop eating mayo? Well, there is a lot of mayo out there that doesn’t involve eggs. What Vegans Eat, which is a blog that you have, has a lot of those wonderful alternatives and transitioning foods. You can get along just fine with out it. It’s maybe not the healthiest way to approach going vegan – but it’s a start. And then from there you can wean yourself off of salt, sugar and fat. Because salt, sugar and fat and processed food – straight across the board – whether it’s with animals or not, is not that good for you. You’ve got to get back to a whole food, plant-based diet. And I don’t mean whole foods, as in the store – that’s called Whole Foods – that’s a great store – I’m talking about whole foods that you find at your farmer’s markets and foods that are minimally processed.
And there are a lot of myths about going vegan: Soy is a big myth; and we tried to bust those myths. We have a story about soy. Chocolate is also…
Caryn Hartglass: Wait. I want to be clear here – we believe because of science-based studies – that minimally-processed soy foods: tofu, tempeh, soymilk, miso, edamame – these are healthy foods. Non-gmo, organic versions of these soy foods are healthy foods.
Gary De Mattei: Right. But people are getting the wrong information. They’re getting alternative facts about how soy causes cancer and all of these things. And of course, someone is going to become afraid of a product if a lot of people are going to be putting millions of dollars into bashing it and telling you that it’s not good. I mean, those are alternative facts folks. You’ve been fed alternative facts about, “you can’t get protein in any other place but animals.” Bullshit. You’ve been fed a load of bullshit and…
You know – let’s talk about shit for a moment. Let’s talk about manure. Animal excrement.
Gary De Mattei: I’d love to. I’ve got a lot I can say about it if you want me to start it off.
Caryn Hartglass: I would like to start it just for a moment. As I mentioned, I’m going to have Dr. Barnard on the show next week and talk about The Cheese Trap. The cows that are used for milk – it’s the most disgusting, dirty situation and those cows have manure all over them; especially when they’re being artificially inseminated, or raped. I was just reading how the unfortunate person who has to shove one gloved hand up their butt so that he can feel the cow’s uterus and then shoot a gun up the cows vagina so that he can artificially inseminate her. Sometimes he takes, he grabs a hold of the neighboring cow’s tail in order to wipe the manure away. It’s everywhere. It’s all over everything. And it gets into your milk, along with pus.
Gary De Mattei: And it is – it’s rape. And you said, “he”, but there are a lot of women that work in this industry as well. And raping cattle is part of the job. Your dollar supports that – your contribution to pollution begins with what you decide to purchase to consume. And it’s really – the pollution associated with that choice is astronomical – it’s huge, it’s massive. And here’s another bit of fact that I have here to read: “In order to raise that animal for you to eat, there is baggage that silently comes along with it. Silent to you, that is. Although it speaks loudly elsewhere. In the United States alone – chickens, turkeys, pigs and cows in factory farms produce over 5 million pounds of excrement per minute.” This is a fact from Richard Oppenlander, in his book, Comfortably Unaware. So, I mean, that’s just one of many facts out there. It goes on to say, ‘these animals – these are the animals raised each year so that people can continue eating meat. And they produce 130 times more excrement than the entire human population in our country. The manure sewage is responsible for global warming, water and soil pollution, air pollution and use of our resources. The waste produced by the animals raised for food includes with it all the antibiotics, pesticides, herbicides, hormones and other chemicals used during the raising and growing process.’ And it goes on and on and on.
Caryn Hartglass: There have been books on the subject like Dr. Oppenlander’s book – actually he had two of them and we talked about both of them on this program.
Gary De Mattei: And accompanying all of this is methane. Methane released by the animals themselves. The methane, as well as the carbon, nitrous oxide and additional methane omissions produced during the whole raising and killing and feeding process. On any given acre of land, we can grow 12 to 20 times the amount, in pounds, of edible vegetables, fruit and grain as in pounds of edible animal products.
Caryn Hartglass: Wow.
Gary De Mattei: We are essentially using 20 times the amount of land and crops and hundreds of times the water as well polluting our water ways and air and destroying rain forests, to produce animals to kill and eat which is unhealthier than eating the plant products we could have produced. Okay. That’s all I’ll say about that. But, I mean, is that not enough for anybody?! To stop doing this?
Caryn Hartglass: Well, it’s not. For a lot of reasons, although, addiction is one of them. Some of you may remember when I spoke to Dr. Susan Thompson a few weeks ago on weight loss, she named a number of studies on the brain and they are in her book, Bright Line Eating, studies that have been done on the brain that show us how the brain kind of talks us into believing things that aren’t true just to make sense of things. And it’s also difficult to change when we’ve been wired, since birth or a young age, to believe in certain things.
Gary De Mattei: You know what Freud would call that? Freud would call that Ego. And it’s the ego that relies on the familiar as Deepak Chopra says. Chopra says, and I know Deepak has his own issues – but this is a very cool quote. The guy can quote – the guy can make up words. And they sound good and true: “The ego relies on the familiar it is reluctant to experience the unknown.” Which is the very essence of live. And Joseph Campbell, who I know you are a fan of, says, “How to get rid of ego as dictator and turn it into messenger and servant and scout, to be in your service, is the trick.” So it takes conscience effort. I’m an actor and we study, as you know – you’re an actor, we study, a lifetime of study is the work. The work is to stay focused on the objectives and to stay focused on the objective is the work. Al Pacino said there’s no such thing as happiness – there’s only concentration. And so, with all of that said, what you’re saying and what I’m saying I think are the same thing: I’m calling it ego and you’re calling it the mind is wiring us this way, because we were hard-wired a long, long time ago.
Take it from me; ten years of vegan – someone who was close to 300 pounds – I haven’t weighed myself in a long time. The last time I weighed myself, I was 175 pounds and I know I’ve dropped a few pounds since then. But – whatever, you can change. Don’t let anybody tell you can’t. You can change. But it requires a lot of work.
Caryn Hartglass: And we’re here to help. We’re here to help. I often forget this, but you can send an email anytime to email@example.com; firstname.lastname@example.org. Ask any kind of question about food that you’d like and I will answer you.
Gary De Mattei: But you know there are a lot of people out there – many of them voted for our current president, who don’t give a shit. Who don’t care. Who want to do what they want to do, who don’t care if it’s going to make them sick; who don’t care if the environment is going to be destroyed; who just don’t care. And that, if you keep your heart open, and realize that love is the only answer, those people starting with the person who we just elected – they require a tremendous amount of help and a tremendous amount of love. And how do we find it in ourselves to keep our hearts open to that? How do we do that? That’s my work.
Caryn Hartglass: Well that’s a good one.
Gary De Mattei: How do you say to them, “I understand”? And that’s the other thing an actor needs to spend a lifetime of study doing, is empathy. Somewhere along the way, when they were hard-wired, they were really abused; and they were really, really just verbally, psychologically, physically beaten and somewhere they just shut down. And I don’t know how to reach them, other than letting them know that we all have a story. We all have that moment where we’ve shut down and closed that open heart that we were born with; and it’s taken a lot of work to open it back up. And just go with your gut, as you have always said, we all know that it’s wrong. I knew that it was wrong before I did it. I knew that it was wrong to kill animals and eat them; I knew that was wrong when I first saw an animal when I was 12 years old on my uncle’s farm, get slaughtered. I knew that was wrong and I hated everybody involved in that slaughtering. But then the people that I put my faith and trust in said, “Oh no. That’s how we have to live our lives. We have to raise these animals and we have to raise them and then we have to kill them and eat them.” And again – bullshit, no you don’t. I know a lot of people out there that I think are great people; and they are in this business of ‘happy meat’ and raising animals humanely. And saying their children only drink milk that is raw and pure and happily raised. And again, I say bullshit to you. You are lying to yourself! You are lying to yourself and you are lying to your children – and you call yourselves Christian or you call yourselves Jews or you call yourselves people of God and you know what? Bullshit. You are not. And I am sorry, I love you, but I was like you at one time and I say that you need to do a little more work.
Caryn Hartglass: Well, we were just talking about that, Gary, you were reading something – we’re always reading one thing or another – mainstream media does not call out the bullshit enough; maybe they are just starting, but they don’t. And somehow they feel like they have to have all kinds of logical and intelligent conversations and discussions to show that something is a lie. But something’s are just like you say – they are just bullshit.
Gary De Mattei: Right. We do this thing here at Responsible Eating and Living around the holidays – I was raised Catholic, you were raised Jewish and neither of us are in therapy which is pretty amazing – I think a form of therapy is food. A lot of people use food as a drug. There are a lot of addictive qualities to a lot of foods out there that we eat; and there are also destructive qualities. One of the things we were reading the other day, which was a report – a recent piece done by Chris Hedges, who went vegan not long ago – but Chris talks about the use of opioids worldwide and more than 33,000 people died in this country in 2015 from opioid overdose. And here’s one of the facts: United States consumes 80% of opioids used worldwide.
Caryn Hartglass: 80%!
Gary De Mattei: 80%. There are 300 million prescriptions written and 24 billion dollars spent annually in the US for painkillers. Americans supplement this mostly legal addiction with over 100 billion dollars a year in illicit marijuana, cocaine, methamphetamine, and heroin. And nearly 1400 US adults, one in every 13, regularly abuse alcohol. But then he goes on to talk about if that’s not enough, there’s gambling and it’s just – I could go on for days,
Caryn Hartglass: What’s crazy about that article in talking about gambling is how the casinos study the characteristics of every gambler and they know when to bring them a free drink; they know when to do certain things to keep them gambling. And Chris Hedges said that the gamblers really aren’t there to win money; they are there to be in this kind of flow – this flow of distraction; this flow of not being in the moment in life.
Gary De Mattei: Not being in reality. And these games at these casinos, these slot machine games and things like that are studied to keep people in this flow. And so who is one of the biggest owners of casinos in the world? This person is now president of the United States. All I’m saying is – we’re fucked – excuse me. I don’t know if you’ve ever had the four-letter word used on this show before, but I’m a co-founder, and unless we start to understand that we need to take it back to reality and start looking within and realize that we’re being played. We’re all being played like slot machines.
Caryn Hartglass: And the thing about food, Gary, is that it fits right in with opioid addictions, gambling additions, many people go to food as well, to numb themselves.
Gary De Mattei: Yeah, let’s pare it down to the essence of that, with our discussion here – most people go to cheese, a heavily subsidized product. There is so much cheese rotting on the shelves in warehouses that the government has purchased and subsidized that it’s insane and most people that I talk to say, “I could never do what you did because I can’t give up cheese.” The reason you can’t give up cheese, people, is because you’re addicted to it: it’s an addiction. So when you look down your nose at people who are addicted to drugs, realize that you are addicted to a drug as well; and it’s called ‘cheese’. And it’s clogging your arteries. And it’s clogging your brain; and it’s putting plaque in places that it shouldn’t be; and you need to get well; and you need to dump the cheese. And if you need cheese alternatives go to Responsible Eating and Living and you can make some of our cheese, it tastes better than the rotting, smelly
Caryn Hartglass: Let’s talk about that – we have just like 12 minutes left and I want to talk about the deliciousness. Just as an example, we came back from the Veggie Pride Parade on Sunday; it was a long day; I was exhausted; we even ate at the Caravan of Dreams after the event and it was fabulous. We came home, and I was still hungry. And Gary made me the most amazing mac and cheese and he used our cashew cheese fondue recipe for the cheese. It was luxurious, so delicious, so comforting; thank you. Yum!
Gary De Mattei: And it’s a great recipe and I’ll make it for anybody. And I will make you macaroni and cheese that will make you say, “I don’t even know why I have to eat that other stuff.” That animal product cheese and I can do it in my blender at home.
Caryn Hartglass: It’s funny because sometimes when you have something that’s really delicious, Gary, you say, “This is like crack.” And the funny thing is that our cashew cheese fondue, you might say it’s like crack, but unlike dairy cheese, which will get you addicted, cashew cheese will not.
Gary De Mattei: No, it will get you well. It’ll get you healthy and strong. And you were going to talk about a couple of other people that spoke at the Veggie Pride Parade. Your talk, hopefully, will be up on line soon on our website. I know a lot of vegans out there who have kids and one of the folks that spoke is a friend of yours and an acquaintance of mine, and she has a couple of kids and they are vegan.
Caryn Hartglass: Marisa Miller Wolfson – she is the one who created the documentary, Vegucated.
Gary De Mattei: She had a great talk, as well. I really enjoyed her talk.
Caryn Hartglass: She did.
Gary De Mattei: And so a lot of you out there are worried about raising your children vegan and I don’t have any children, but Marisa has two, and she’s a vegan, and so check her out. She’s got a lot of great things to say. And there are a lot of documentaries out there, and hers is one of the best I think. And mine is one of the best – ours – is one of the best and ours is The Lone Vegan documentary which is up for free on our website, check it out.
The other thing I wanted to talk about, if we could for a second, is this myth that I know we are going to do a special on and I’m going to give a little teaser because I want you to talk about future episodes of It’s All About Food with your guests, one of them being Dr. Neal Barnard, who is amazing, who is unbelievable. But I want you to talk about the other guests – but is the bone broth myth -going around now.
Caryn Hartglass: Oh yeah. So I have a bone to pick with bone broth, and we plan on doing a feature on it. But it’s one of these things that has been trending for quite a bit; there are a lot of Paleo people and other people who have said that it just heals everything; it’s amazing. I want to say a number of things: Number 1 – there are no medical studies supporting the nutritional benefits of bone broth; there is one medical study that has shown that organic chicken bones are highly concentrated in lead – so if you are going to bone broth for protein and some are going for the minerals, you’re also getting a high concentration of lead – which by the way – is toxic. And I think if the people that are feeling better with bone broth are actually feeling the placebo effect, which is a very powerful effect. The mind is very powerful. And people will believe that they are feeling better; and some will, indeed feel better. Because the mind has that much power. But we’ll talk more about bone broth; I’ve got a lot to say about it. And it’s not good, everybody.
Gary De Mattei: Caryn, this has been so much fun! Who are some of your guests coming up this next month of April?
Caryn Hartglass: Right, so, I mentioned Dr. Neal Barnard; and in the same show I’m also going to be talking to Will Bonsall and he’s an eccentric person who has a lot of integrity and a farm up in Maine. And he’ll be talking quite a bit about radical gardening, and that includes veganic agriculture where you don’t use any animal products to fertilize the soil.
Gary De Mattei: No bullshit gardening.
Caryn Hartglass: No shit of any kind.
Gary De Mattei: A lot of people would think that you couldn’t grow without shit, but you really can. And he’s going to talk to you about how you can do that.
Caryn Hartglass: Yeah. What I learned a long time ago about veganic agriculture there have been some areas in Europe where they didn’t have animals to create manure. Now, this was a long time ago. And they learned how to nourish the soil with plants and it’s veganic agriculture. And then there are some that say you absolutely need animals to nourish the soil, so we know that’s not true. But for those that want to use animals – I say, “Fine. Have animals live on your property. You just don’t have to kill them. You don’t have to eat them. Just let them be. And let them crap all around. And use it.” That’s fine.
Gary De Mattei: Okay -we just got the five-minute warning from the lovely people at PRN, who are awesome, we love them. Thank you PRN.
Caryn Hartglass: & Gary De Mattei:
Gary De Mattei: And so Gary Null, PRN, woot woot. Anyway, I’ve had a great time. You probably want to sign off and talk about some other stuff…
Caryn Hartglass: No. We need to talk about one more thing Gary that we haven’t talked about, and that’s Corn Thins with nut and seed butters at midnight.
Gary De Mattei: Okay – so we are going to do this new feature coming up soon. I’m going to be talking about what vegans buy – because unfortunately it’s how you’re spending your money that’s going to change the world. And you need to stop spending your money on bullshit and start spending it on things that are going to save us and the planet. What Vegans Buy is going to be new feature. And one of the things that we buy a lot of these days is Corn Thins. And we have them at midnight with nut butters and seed butters. And I know a lot of people are allergic to nuts. One of them is in the White House now and I’m allergic to that nut, but I digress. But the other nuts a lot of people are allergic to are peanuts. I know that my friend David Travers is allergic to most nuts, but I think David can eat seeds. So there are seed butters and one of the greatest seed butters on a Corn Thin is this thing that I was introduced to 10 years ago after going vegan, and that’s tahini. And we found this amazing tahini out there.
Caryn Hartglass: Artisana organic.
Gary De Mattei: Artisana Organic tahini. It’s a raw tahini and it’s phenomenal.
Caryn Hartglass: And it’s more expensive than the rest, but you know, you only live once. And I think this is something that’s worth splurging on.
Gary De Mattei: Right. So look for our new feature coming up soon at Responsible Eating and Living called, What Vegans Buy.
Caryn Hartglass: You know, we are so in love with these Corn Thins and the funny thing about them is they are made by a company called, REAL, in Australia. Real. R-E-A-L. Just like us – we’re real. Responsible Eating And Living.
Gary De Mattei: And you’re real, too, for tuning in and listening to us and we can’t do it without you so please keep tuning in love every week and listening to this show and I want to thank you all for making Responsible Eating And Living a really hot website to visit. And Caryn Hartglass, I’ll close my portion of this with a quote by Tennessee Williams: “Nobody sees anybody truly but all through the flaws of their own egos. This is the way we all see each other in life. Vanity, fear, desire, competition, all such distortions within our own egos condition our vision of those in relation to us. And to those distortions to our own egos that corresponding distortions and egos of others, and you see how cloudy the glass must become through which we look at each other – that’s how it is in all living relationships. Except when there is that rare case of two people who love intensely enough to burn through all those layers of opacity and see each other’s naked hearts.” And Caryn, I just want you to know, that I see your naked heart and I love you for what you do. So happy.
Caryn Hartglass: Thank you Gary. Thank you for tuning in all that love.
Gary De Mattei: Thank you Tennessee Williams! And I’ll talk to you later, Caryn
Caryn Hartglass: Okay. Thank you Gary De Mattei, co-founder of Responsible Eating and Living. I have less than a minute left and I wanted to tell you that if you want to view my talk at the Veggie Pride Parade go on Facebook and go to the Responsible Eating and Living page on Facebook. That’s Facebook.com/responsibleeatingandliving. Like us on Facebook, follow us on Facebook, and also, as I’ve mentioned recently, if you can recommend this program, like us on iTunes, we’d love to share all of this information with as many people as we can and change the world and make it better than it is today.
Thanks for listening. I’m Caryn Hartglass. It’s All About Food. You know that – and have a very delicious week.
Transcribed by DM, 4/21/2017