Can We Cut Crime by Changing Cafeteria Menus?

I know; I know. It’s controversial. Some say crazy, but what if we could reduce crime and violence by simply changing cafeteria menus? A high school in Appleton, Wisconsin tried an experiment under the enlightened guidance of their principal, LuAnn Coenen. She wanted to see if she could positively affect the fighting, weapons-carrying and general lack of focus and discipline in the school by changing the food the kids ate.

Where Has All the Compassion Gone?

I wanted to talk about something that seriously bugs me. I have lived a plant-centric lifestyle for more than 25 years and people rarely knew it. I always told myself it was because I disliked labels, so ‘macrobiotic,’ ‘vegan…’whatever was off my list of things to call myself.

A Day in D.C. (A Retrospective)

On a crisp Thuirsday in January of 2012, I had the privilege to testify before the USDA with my friend and colleague, Dr. Neal Barnard, president and founder of the Physician’s Committee for Responsible Medicine. I presented the following comments on the first draft of the USDA dietary guidelines, to be released this December.

I am honored to be here to comment on such an important topic.

Why Choose HEALTH When You Can Choose Dinner in a Bucket?

Walk into a fast food restaurant and look at the menu closely. Your head will spin at the sheer number of options available to wreck your health and accelerate your arrival at the Pearly Gates. They may call it convenient and even more criminally…food, but what they’re really doing is robbing you of your health…and giving you a big, fat gut in the process.

My Story of Growing up Italian and Where It Got Me to Today

My life began when I was 14. Okay, I was born fourteen years before that, but…

I was raised in a big Italian and Irish family, with extended clan members roaming wildly in and out of our house and lives on a daily basis. With the exception of my Irish father, we all cooked…my brothers, sister, cousins, aunts, uncles, grandparents and of course, my mother.

I’m Mad As Hell

As my mother used to say, I’m so mad I could spit. The collapsing dollar, recession, lost jobs, multiple wars and political unrest, global natural disasters, and, as Peter Finch's character declared in the 1976 film Network, “air you can’t breathe, water you can’t drink, and food you can’t eat.”

I can’t tell you what to do about the economy, politics, terrorism, or global warming (although I have a few opinions about that), but I surely can tell you what we can do about the food we eat.

Fit for Human Consumption

If we took cooking seriously, we could change the human condition. I’m not kidding. French food expert, Jean-Anthelme Brillat Savarin once said that cooking made us who we were; that the discovery of fire in cooking “had done the most to advance the cause of civilization.” In 1964, anthropologist, Claude Lévi-Strauss regarded cooking as a way to distinguish humans from other animals. Since then, other anthropology experts, including Richard Wrangham of Harvard University contends that it was the discovery of cooking with fire, more than anything else that made us human.

President Bill Clinton… National Treasure

From little fat boy to the national poster boy for healthy plant-based eating, the former President has become…in my view, a national treasure…a shining example of what we can do to create health if we put our minds…and wills to it.