Happy Herbivore Blog

June 15, 2013

This Week's Q&A (Talking LA Veg Restaurants, Freezing Food, Overeating, Choosing Cookbooks, and Type 2 Diabetes)

You've got questions...


Q: I'm going to be traveling to LA next month. I was wondering if there was any vegan restaurants, cafe, diners you can recommend. 

A: My favorite place to eat in LA is Swingers (2 locations) — they have several vegan menu items, including multi-grain banana pancakes, which I always get. 

If you find yourself in the Valley (Studio City/Sherman Oaks) go to the Hugo Taco stand for frozato, which is vegan soft-serve. It's amazing. The taco stand also has vegan burgers and tacos, but I find them to be a little too greasy.

There is also a Hugo's restaurant (different from the taco stand, 2 locations) with a huge vegan menu, and some oil-free dishes as well. You can't get the soft serve at their restaurant though, which stinks. 

Real Food Daily and Native Foods (both all vegan restaurants) are very popular. Veggie Grill is everywhere, and vegan, though I'm not a fan. 

Another place we like, which is nothing special, is Vegan Glory. They have the best tacos, even though it's an Asian restaurant. They have the best Pad Thai in LA (with soy fish). All my friends get that. I'm lame and get Fresh rolls. 

You'll find LA is one of the most vegan cities in the world (everyone in hollywood is mostly vegan to be skinny) so you won't have trouble finding good, fresh food to eat :)

Q: On the subject of freezing food; is it ok to freeze sweet potatoes? and is there any veg that can't be frozen?

A: Some plant foods don't do well frozen. Please see my post, How to Freeze Foods, for help.

Q: I am really wanting to buy one of your books but there are so many I can't decide which one to order first.  I just became a vegan about 3 weeks ago — Help!

A: If you can only get one, I would look through the tables of contents and see which one speaks to you most. They're all great as a first book. HHC is more of a comfort foods book. EHH is quick and easy, back to basics, and HHA is all international. You can also pre-order my new book coming out this December, HHL&L.

I also can't recommend the meal plans enough for newbies. Makes it SO easy.  

We also have a 3-Day Reboot and 10-Day Cleanse & Immersion, which are terrific when you're taking your first steps to living better.

Q: My problem is I eat way too much.  How can I train myself to eat less food? I want to stick to the meal plans of 1200 calories a day so that I can lose weight, but I don't know if I can control my hunger.

A: You don't want to go hungry. The meal plans start at 1,200 calories, but we provide a calorie calculator (see the welcome page) so you can figure out just exactly how much you need. For many people, 1,200 is too few. If you are hungry, eat. We provide lots of snack options with the meal plan (see the snack pages at the end of the plan) but any healthy food — fruits, vegetables, grains, is fine, too. Try to pick foods that are bulky but low in calories. That said, if you think it's more than just hunger, you might want to consider joining a support group like Overeaters Anonymous.

Although I haven't read any of these books myself, a friend of mine who has been a support group leader of a local OA recommended these books to me, when I asked her about this topic:

The End of Overeating: Taking Control of the Insatiable American Appetite

Salt Sugar Fat: How the Food Giants Hooked Us

and 

Shrink Yourself: Break Free from Emotional Eating Forever (*I did hear this author speak at a conference and really enjoyed his presentation. He also has an online program)

A book I love and can't recommend enough is Mindless Eating.

Q: Are the meal plans suitable for someone with Type 2 diabetes?

A: If you are following Dr. Neal Barnard's program for preventing and reversing Type 2 diabetes, the meal plans are suitable — but you may need to make a tiny tweak on occasion. Listen to Dr. Barnard speak about tackling Type 2 diabetes.

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