The Get Healthy, Go Vegan Cookbook

August 22nd, 2010 · Lisa · book review, Review · Comments
Watching a butterfly emerge from a cocoon is one of the most awe inspiring moments I’ve ever witnessed. I was amazed not just by the beauty of the butterfly or their ability to fly but by the change that occurred in such a short period of time that completely transformed their life. I have been blessed over the years to experience stories of personal transformation in the lives of friends and family members who have decided to reclaim their health through diet and lifestyle changes.
Just calling yourself “vegan” is not a magic spell that melts away the pounds and cleans out your arteries.  Living vegan automatically excludes a number of foods that put us at increased risk of disease. However, in order to really benefit from the healing properties of food we have to choose nourishing, whole foods rather than processed alternatives to standard fare. How do I know all this? Because some very smart people have spent a lot of time researching the impact of following a healthy vegan diet. I’ve sung the praises of Brenda Davis and T. Colin Campbell on this blog before. Today, I’d like to share a few words about Neal Barnard, the president of the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine.
In July I was able to attend two of Neal’s presentations. I was impressed by the data he had to share on reversing diabetes and improving health in numerous research health trials but what has stayed with me is his passion. He knows how powerful this information is and wants everyone to know about it.
Neal has published numerous books on his research on diabetes and food cravings but recently he released a new book that is lighter on the data and heavier on the deliciousness. Robyn Webb, provides 125 recipes that fit Neal’s instructions for a health-promoting approach to eating and living. The Get Healthy, Go Vegan Cookbook starts with results of medical research, personal testimonials, pantry essentials and healthy promoting habits. 

As you flip through the pages you’ll quickly discover that Neal and Robyn adore the flavours and nutritional profiles of beans, sweet potatoes, quinoa and oats. The recipes offer a broad range of flavours influenced by different ethnic cuisines, although they are lighter on spice than I personally enjoy. I read another review that felt the recipes were a little heavy in the use of curry. I have to disagree. I wanted more curry! However, Robyn seems to share my personal appreciation for ginger. It is brilliantly included in an array of options, such as: banana-ginger pancakes, creamy rice cereal with gingery blueberries, gingery pear and sweet potato soup and ginger tofu. Yum. 

Beyond the gingery bliss, this book includes a comprehensive list of offerings for each meal, an Italian feast, a 3-day menu plan (with shopping list) and even some special sweets. The nutritional facts for every recipe is included on each page. 

I love that the recipes in this book highlight whole foods. I think it is much tastier to celebrate the flavours that exist in fruit, vegetables, grains and legumes rather than trying to fool our taste buds into imagining they are enjoying something else. The recipes are easy, the ingredient lists aren’t intimidating and the results are delicious. My niece and nephews would love everything in this book. These recipes would be perfect to share at a family picnic, work potluck or anywhere that people might avoid your tempeh and arame salad. I would highly recommend this book to anyone who is interested in improving their health but doesn’t have hours to spend in their kitchen.
I enjoyed some amazing meals from the pages of The Get Healthy, Go Vegan Cookbook:
Tomatoes Stuffed with French Lentils
Spinach, Beet and Orange Salad with Ginger-Agave Dressing
Sweet Potatoes and Chickpeas in Chili Sauce

I also tried the Mixed Greens with Miso Dressing and Quinoa and Carrot Salad but forgot to capture a picture before they disappeared. Everything came together quickly and provided an amazing sense of satiety. I usually eat a lot of raw fruit and vegetables so I was quite impressed by how filling the bean and legume dishes were. I plan to continue to add lentils and chickpeas to my salads in the future – especially on heavy training days (the big race is now just around the corner).

If you’re interested in trying out some Dr. Barnard endorsed recipes PCRM provides a ton of healthy vegan recipes on their site.

Happy Sunday all. I’m off to volunteer at Whole Foods in a raw, vegan cooking class. I see some smoothies in my future. xo

7 Comments

  1. Posted August 22, 2010 at 8:58 pm

    I came across this book the other & considered buying it. Sounds like it would be a great addition to my collection & should really help me come up with new ideas. Thanks for the review! And those recipes look delicious 🙂

  2. Posted August 22, 2010 at 9:32 pm

    Looks like a good one. I have heard Dr Barnard speak and I know he is very much a proponent of whole foods. Back then I wondered how the heck I was going to get off sugar. He helped plant the seed at least.

  3. Posted August 23, 2010 at 10:59 am

    I consider Dr. Barnard one of the greatest experts in the field, and I'm considering buying his new book for my 20-year-old cousins who have just recently decided to go veg. Thanks for the review!

  4. Posted August 23, 2010 at 5:14 pm

    Hi! Fantastic to find you via an LLL connection (your mom posting you on FB 🙂

    I live in New Zealand and have been vegan for about 15 years, since discovering Dr McDougall. My kids are also vegan. I got to see Dr Barnard at Raw Power when he toured NZ last year(?)

    Your recipes look amazing! I have a few posts on my blog on veganism and a couple just recently

    Frugal family vegan feasts

    and

    Kids Can Eat Veggies

  5. Posted August 23, 2010 at 7:50 pm

    This book sounds great. I would love to find a copy for my Mom. Thanks for posting the link to pcrm.org… their recipes are so appealing:)

  6. Posted August 24, 2010 at 7:15 pm

    Erica Sara – I should warn you it isn't gluten-free. There are a lot of gf entrees but some call for pasta or flour. I avoided those in my testing but wanted you to know. p.s. your last post was such bliss.

    bitt-I am really inspired by Dr. Barnard's passion for his work. Truly a remarkable man.

    Nicole – I agree, Dr. Barnard has done some pretty incredible work in this field. I hope your cousin enjoys the book.

    Jess- what a delightful connection. I look forward to reading your blog. Plus when I run away to NZ I know who to call!

    evergreen…just xoxo

  7. Posted August 24, 2010 at 9:40 pm

    This cookbook sounds interesting, we will have to check it out.

    Thanks for sharing your thoughts!

    Pure2raw twins

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