I was planning a simple post tonight. Just a photo of some yummy olive cream cheeze spread and a few words on how tasty it is. But a few anonymous comments on my last ramen post inspired me to explain why I'm vegan and what my priorities are.
One comment warned me that a wax coating on some ramen noodles can cause cancer. This claim originated from a hoax email and the claim has been dis-proven (see the Snopes article here). But just so you know, I've never been one to stress over negative health claims, whether research backs them up or not.
Another commenter claimed that Morningstar Farms chick'n strips were not vegan because they contained GMOs (genetically modified organisms). Just because a product contains GMOs doesn't make it un-vegan. It may make it bad for your health and the planet, but so long as the food is animal by-product-free, it's vegan. And those strips are definitely vegan.
You see, I am a vegan because I love animals. I don't eat animals or their by-products because I practice a life of compassion for all living beings. I believe eating meat is immoral. That is the ONLY reason I'm vegan. I do care about my health, but I also care about enjoying life and eating things that make me happy. Occasional fried foods, processed junk food, candy, sweets .... these are things that make me happy.
But don't get me wrong. Ninety percent of time, I eat uber-healthy — whole grains, no high-fructose corn syrup, no soda, as little refined sugar as possible. But when I want to splurge, I do. If I spent all my time stressing about this health claim or that health claim, I'm fairly certain it would suck all the fun out of life. And we're only here for a short time, so let's live it up. Laissez les bon temps roulez, right?
That being said, I do also try to avoid GMOs most of the time. Not for me, but for the planet. But I'm not going to deny myself a treat because it MIGHT contain GMOs.
Anyway, that's all I wanted to say. I totally respect health vegans. I get it. But that's just not me. It's a big topic, but I didn't want folks to worry when I post photos of processed food or healthy no-no's.
For example, my breakfast had a little processed food thing going on. I had some leftover Tofutti Cream Cheese, but I didn't want plain cream cheese on my bagels. So I looked for mix-in ideas in Vegan Brunch and found this idea for Olive Cream Cheese:
It's schmeared all over a Whole Foods brand sprouted wheat fiber bagel. Olives may seem weird for breakfast, but I love those salty little things so much, it doesn't matter what time of day they end up in my mouth. It was like cheeseball for breakfast!
What's your vegan philosophy?