So, I’ve loved all of Ginny’s books, and have also enjoyed/admired Carol Adams’s and Patti Breitman’s work. This book is another winner, and is gearedSo, I’ve loved all of Ginny’s books, and have also enjoyed/admired Carol Adams’s and Patti Breitman’s work. This book is another winner, and is geared toward an important demographic. I consider Ginny a friend and am proud to call her friend. She’s a lovely person and has done so much good for the animals, and for helping people become vegan and helping them be as healthy as possible on vegan diets.
I wouldn’t normally have had this book at the top of my radar given that I went vegan long before age 50, but I like reading all sorts of vegan books (having knowledge is good for outreach and I always learn something new for myself too) and I can’t see Ginny having a book out and not reading it. I’ve even read 2 editions of her book for professional R.D.s
The main thing I can say is don’t avoid this book if you are not yet 50 years old, and definitely read it if you’re considering going vegan, or are a new vegan, no matter what your age, but definitely don’t miss it if you are 40+, 50+.
I went lacto-ovo at age 23, tried to be (and mostly was, at about 95%-99%) vegan from age 34, and finally succeeded going fully vegan (it was a long road) at age 41. My biggest regret about the process is that I didn’t become vegan even sooner than I did. I really envy people who’ve been vegan from a young age, and especially those who are lifelong vegans, but, as the book says, it’s never too late to make a change and go vegan. So, I recommend reading the book no matter what your age.
It’s a wonderful book. It’s packed with all sorts of useful information. I particularly like how, in several short sections, the three authors share their experiences, including what vegan foods they eat. I love vegan food and also think it’s fun to vicariously enjoy what others eat, and imagining myself eating it, not to mention I love getting ideas for foods to actually make. I got all that in this book. Here, “make” is a term used loosely. There are some wonderful included recipes (I was especially happy to see some by Jennifer Raymond, whose recipes are easy to make and delicious) but also included are foods anyone could put together without effort.
I’m grateful for the book’s subtitle, because the focus of this book is vegan, plant-based foods only, not vegan living in every way. For instance, I aim to use no products of any type derived from or tested on animals.
The book’s topics cover proper nutrition, ideas for foods to eat, including how to veganize some favorite non-vegan foods, and aging and various medical conditions and how diet effects them, and really helpful sections on the impact on relationships of making the change to eating vegan when others are still eating non-vegan, and might not understand vegans/vegan foods. Throughout, the authors write about some of their personal experiences, and those are wonderful and very helpful contributions.
I think for people who are interested in but not yet eating vegan, this book will help them see how it’s very possible to succeed eating 100% vegan. It’s an extremely beneficial addition to the genre of vegan “how to” and informational and recipe books.
For those who are over 50, or nearing 50, whether a long time vegan, newly vegan, “veganish”, or interested in vegan eating, I think this book’s contents are helpful and interesting for all these readers.
I often like including the Table of Contents in my vegan books reviews, but I see the Amazon “Look Inside” has that available, for those who want to get a more specific sense of what the book offers....more
This book got me out of my very long reading slump. It was such an easy book to read, yet it was wonderfully complex. I sank into it as I hadn’t sunkThis book got me out of my very long reading slump. It was such an easy book to read, yet it was wonderfully complex. I sank into it as I hadn’t sunk into a book for a long time. It felt wonderful.
So, so funny. So wise. So psychologically smart and sophisticated. So entertaining. Not a false note, though the very ending wasn’t perfect for me, but it was okay. I loved all the literary and psychology/science references. Devastating too as it was emotionally raw. Complicated in a perfect way. It’s a marvelous and unique coming of age story, and I love all sorts of coming of age stories. I love Rosemary’s voice too, the main character who tells the story.
I somewhat know two of the major settings: Davis California and Bloomington Indiana. So, that was fun, even though there wasn’t a huge amount of detail of either, but I still had fun knowing the places.
Unfortunately, I knew much about it before reading it, and this is one book that’s much better to go into totally cold. Reading the hardcover book’s jacket is fine. Reading book descriptions and reviews is not. I still enjoyed it, but I think I’d have loved it even more had I known nothing other than what’s on the book’s cover; in other words, virtually nothing.
So that leads me to my dilemma. I want to highly recommend this book to my real world book club, but I don’t want members to expect too much detail when they ask me about it, and I really don’t want them looking it up. That might be a bit of a problem....more
I wasn’t the slightest bit disappointed. In fact, I think this is my favorite of the 4 books.
I was charmed the minute I opened the book and saw a bunch of gorgeous rocks pictured on the 2 inside front covers, and then turned to the back to see if they’d show the same or different rocks or something else, and they were the same rocks but on the 2 pages of the inside back covers they are labeled with their names. Loved it! I would have poured over these pages as a child, choosing my favorites.
And then the information in the book proper is fascinating. I knew some but not all of it. The examples given were so, so interesting. I was completely captivated and would have been even more so when I was a rock and mineral fanatic and loved studying geology, especially volcanoes, and was avidly pouring over my copy of Rocks and Minerals.
A part of me wants to include more details in this review, including the descriptive terms and various examples used on the pages, but I’ve decided it will be more fun for readers of all ages to discover for themselves the contents of this book. It’s really wonderful.
The youngest children can enjoy the illustrations in this book; they’re outstanding, very beautiful. Children 7-13 can appreciate the more detailed information inside. As for independent reading, I’d say this book is for 8 or 9 and up, depending on the previous knowledge and the vocabulary of the person.
If I was 8-12 I’d have spent my allowance to have a copy of this book in my home library, and if I had children at home I’d make sure to have an owned copy there.
I fervently hope that this team creates more books in this nature series.
I’ll reread this book at least once before I (sadly) return it to the library, and I’m happy it will be available for borrowing in the future.
If I go on now it will sound like hyperbole, so I’ll stop now....more
5 stars and not a smidgen less. I’d give it more than 5 stars if I could. This book exceeded my high expectations. This is a must read book for vegan5 stars and not a smidgen less. I’d give it more than 5 stars if I could. This book exceeded my high expectations. This is a must read book for vegan women, vegan interested women, and anyone who cares about plant based nutrition.
I will keep it in a convenient place for easy reference, and I intend to frequently refer to it.
This is a marvelous book, so engaging, so informative, so well organized, and it is fun to read. The two authors have written their own distinct sections, but reading this book is a seamless experience. It’s well written and never dull.
I’m a long time vegan (over 25 years since I started my journey and was vegetarian more than a decade before that) and have read extensively about nutrition, starting as a kid because of weight issues and general interest, and in my twenties because of my vegetarianism, including reading Ginny’s professional dietetics books, and I’ve taken college level nutrition classes, yet I learned several things brand new to me and appreciated being updated on other subjects that have new information since I last read about them; some of the research is fairly new. I really appreciate that Ginny cares what’s scientifically valid and what isn’t, and there are numerous references that back up the information imparted.
This is an especially superb book for new vegans and those who are vegan interested, and those who just want to add more plant foods to their diets.
This book addresses the needs of adult women, yet I think family members and friends who are male or adolescents/kids can get a lot from it too as some things are universal, and everybody can enjoy the included recipes.
I highly recommend reading this book cover to cover as I did, but there is an excellent list on pages 315-316, and it summarizes things well, and can serve as a quick reminder of some key points made.
I like how Ginny starts right off with animal rights/suffering, as do both Ginny & J.L. in their meaningful dedication.
I’m going to have to “bookmark”/remember the calorie formula on page 104, and make use of it depending on how much activity I’m getting, and regarding my age range as that also changes.
I’m so appreciative of the “weight” chapter. There are too many books out now encouraging people to go vegan only for reason of a promised weight loss. Most of the information here was not new to me, but a fair amount was. I wish I’d known this information and these tips decades ago, but so much are newly found facts and some is still conjecture. I’m glad so much research has been done and is being done, and I appreciate so much of its inclusion here. Even some of the described techniques I’ve found over the years to be of limited value, I think most women are likely to find them of great value, and my guess is that everyone can find at least some helpful to them. There is so much good and fascinating information included here.
I was fascinated to read about the research that finds that some people may be hardwired for compassion. Several of my ethical vegan friends and I have had discussions over the years about how we feel different in some definite but unspecified way from others we know and love, who love us, who are wonderful people, who often have a strong moral sense, but who are not vegan, even though they know about the reasons we’ve chosen this lifestyle. We’ve been puzzled at the “difference” we’ve perceived, and I’m eager to have my likeminded friends read this book and then have further discussions with them.
There is a particularly good list of resources especially for new vegans and the vegan interested though the http://veganforher.com/ site is not listed; I think it’s new since the book was completed. The section is a handy resource even for those of us already familiar with them.
I did decide to read all the extensive references (pages 321-365!!!) and both indexes, so I read every word of this book. I almost didn’t read the references as I trust implicitly trust Ginny and could tell the book was well researched. I didn’t read the references notes as I read the book as it would have interrupted the flow of what was really interesting narrative, even though I usually do read notes in books as I read along, going from the page I’m on to the back of the book, back and forth. Here, it was more enjoyable to just read the book without those interruptions. The indexes are good, and I was thrilled to see that there are multiple ways to find the recipes in the recipe index.
My only quibble with the otherwise first-rate book Vegan for Life was that maybe it made eating vegan healthfully sound just a tad more difficult than it is, though omnivores have to pay attention to nutrition too but often just don’t know it. I like this book even better (and I did love that book) because the suggestions here seem even clearer and also more familiar to anyone who’s ever paid attention to nutrition and diet.
The recipes are divided into sections: Breakfast; Salads, Sides, and Dips; Soups and Chili; Sandwiches and Burgers; Pizza and Pasta; Hearty Entrees; Dessert
Since I rarely exactly follow recipes, I appreciate that Fields encourages experimentation and deviations. There is a wonderful and very useful introduction to the recipe section. And, most importantly, the recipes’ ingredients follow the recommendations made in the nutrition sections.
I have to say up front that I’m a picky eater and there are many foods I don’t like, including ones that appear in some of the recipes, ingredients that most eaters probably do like, including vinegar, coconut, mustard, vegan bacon, vegan mayonnaise, capers, sundried tomatoes, vegan chicken-style seasoning and broth, dulse flakes, tempeh, soy curls, tvp, vital wheat gluten, Tofurky “ground beef style” (or any style Tofurky), seitan, vegan sour cream, etc. so it’s actually amazing how many of the included recipes appeal to me:
In Breakfasts: the Creamy Vegetable Breakfast Casserole, Silky Strawberry Smoothie, and “Ice Cream” for Breakfast
In Salads, Sides, and Dips: Mediterranean Beans with Grains, Nutty Quinoa and Cherry Salad (and I would make it with the black beans!), Brazil Nut and Almond Paté, the Tangy Tomato Dressing, and the Cashew-Almond Orange Dressing
In Soups and Chili (my favorite section, I think): Easy Tofu Pumpkin Soup, Creamy Kale Miso Soup, Portobello Mushroom and Barley Soup, and Lentil and Millet Chili
nothing for me in Sandwiches and Burgers because the recipes heavily rely on vegan meats
in Pizza and Pasta: Spinach Bow Tie Pasta Salad, Socca Pizza, and Black-Eyed Pea and Collard Green Pizza
In Hearty Entrees: the Quinoa-Millet Veggie Bowl, and 3 of the Tofu dishes (but with lemon or lime or other citrus juice in place of the vinegar)
and none of the 3 desserts (no chocolate is the main reason)
Other readers and cooks, especially those who enjoy vegan meats (or animal flesh meats) will likely enjoy many more of the recipes, and the ones I’ve listed look scrumptiously delicious to me. All the recipes add immeasurably to this book.
One confusing thing: the recipe on page 258 has a description that doesn’t seem to match the recipe ingredients, an editing issue, I guess. At all the other recipes, the short introductory text for each, make the book more readable, more fun, and more interesting.
Part One: Going Vegan 1. Going Vegan: An Easy Transition 2. Vegan Nutrition: A Primer 3. Beyond Ingredients: One Healthy Diet
Part Two: Healthy Eating for All the Times of a Woman’s Life 4. Understanding Research on Vegan Diets and Women’s Health 5. Diet and Hormones Throughout a Woman’s Life 6. A Plant-Based Plan to Enhance Fertility 7. Growing New Vegans: Nutrition for Pregnancy and Breastfeeding 8. Powered by Plants: The Female Vegan Athlete
Part Three: Lifelong Health for Vegan Women 9. Health and Happiness Beyond the Scale 10. Healthy Aging 11. Preventing Breast Cancer 12. Eating for a Healthy Heart 13. Strong Bones for Life 14. Fighting Pain with Plant Foods 15. Controlling Diabetes 16. Feeling Good: Managing Stress and Depression 17. Veganism Beyond the Plate
Part Four: Recipes
List of Recipes Recipes
Metric Conversion Chart Acknowlegments Resources for Vegan Women Appendix A: Be a Healthy Vegan Woman for Life Appendix B: Food Sources of Nutrients That Are Important in Women’s Health References Index Recipe Index
Thank you to Ginny Messina for giving me an inscribed copy of this book, and thanks also to Da Capo Press who, in exchange for an honest review, provided copies to me, my co-creator and co-moderator of the Vegan Cooking & Cookbooks group and in addition provided a copy for a giveaway to our group members.
So, I now own two copies, which means I have an extra copy for lending out. I actually recommend owning your own copy, and that might be cheaper for those of you not local because of shipping costs, but if you would like to look at it first, and/or if you can’t afford to purchase the book and if your local library doesn’t have it, I’m happy to lend you my extra copy. My preference is to first lend it out to local people, and then long distance people, and I’d love it that if you borrow the book from me you review it here at Goodreads, and also on any blogs & other sites where you write book reviews, if applicable. Just pm me and ask if you are interested....more
I loved this book. The stories are marvelous. They’re exceptional. They’re incredibly deftly written. Each story is a gem, as is the entire narrative.I loved this book. The stories are marvelous. They’re exceptional. They’re incredibly deftly written. Each story is a gem, as is the entire narrative.
Though I thoroughly enjoyed the book, it wasn’t a comfort read for me. In fact, all my hypochondriac tendencies and fears about my future health status were activated, but I loved the stories anyway, despite feeling sad, infuriated, and especially really scared at times while reading. It greatly helped that the compassionate nature of the writer continually shines through the pages.
I haven’t enjoyed a short story book as much since I read How to Breathe Underwater by Julie Orringer. Although I’ve always enjoyed reading essays, but my usual preference is to read novels and full-length non-fiction books rather than short stories and books of short stories. However, these are intersecting stories, with characters that sometimes make appearances in different stories. The stories also somehow feel as if they’re part of one story, and in general they do follow a timeline, from young to old, from students to experienced medical doctors. The whole thing worked really well. I thought the stories fit together so well even before I got to the last story, and that last story solidified the job of tying all the stories together.
These stories are published as fiction but all along they read as truth to me, and the last story makes clear that each does have a huge non-fiction component. That’s why this book is on so many of my apparently contradictory shelves.
I love the quote that starts the book: “If you don’t care for obscenity, you don’t care for the truth.” (It’s by Tim O’Brien from How to Tell a War Story. I can’t find that book at Goodreads but I probably wouldn’t add it to my favorite quotes anyway, even though I really like the quote and it definitely fits this book.) One of my big quibbles with medicine, ever since I was aware, from eleven years old on, is the dishonestly. When it comes to medical matters I value honesty above all else. (I recently took a continuing education class about end of life care and was tempted to write a long rant in the feedback section to their contention that what is most important when treating a patient is hope. Not for myself it isn’t; it’s honesty.) I appreciate that she has worked in palliative care.
I loved the San Francisco settings. I could identify most of them and am familiar with some of them. I always enjoy books that I can put on my san-francisco shelf. This book makes wonderful use of the city, its medical facilities but also many other places.
I really appreciated how skillfully the relationships and communications and miscommunications were explored, from cross-cultural, to supervisor-supervisee, doctor-patient, between lovers and between friends, between group members, etc.
As I read these stories I couldn’t help but be aware of the following of my feelings/beliefs: Don't get sick. Don't get disabled. Don't get old if not in perfect health, and be wealthy, not poor. And perhaps: Don’t go into medicine, or be careful it’s your true calling if you do. I have physicians in my family and I’ve watched many in the process of dying, so I’d already thought a great deal about these matters, but reading this book has caused enough of a shift that I think I’ll be looking at death & dying and doctor-patient relationships slightly differently.
I’m always impressed by and frequently enjoy writing by physicians. On the back inside cover of the book, in the bio section, it says that “She is an associate professor of medicine at the University of California, San Francisco, where she cares for older patients and directs the Northern California Geriatric Education Center and UCSF Medical Humanities.” She probably couldn’t have written this exact book without her medical training and practice, but it reads as a book written by a true writer, and I hope she writes and publishes more work. I’ll read it if she does....more