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Archive for the ‘Vegan News’ Category

Social Eating Stipulations – Acceptance Through Example

Are Plant-Eaters Still the Odd Duck Out?

While plant-based diets are certainly making headway in our modern American culture,   broad acceptance remains stagnant in a critical cloud of naivety. In the eyes of the general ‘cheeseburger-chomping’ American, vegans, macrobiotics and vegetarians are viewed as either self-involved trend-riders, or shaggy, hand-soiled, feet-blackened hippy farmers who live at least 100 miles from anywhere worth being. But, like Bob Dylan has been known to say, “The times, they are a-changin’…”

Blog writer Brook Bolen, in her article ‘Understanding and Conquering Social Obstacles to Eating Vegan’ notes “As a sociologist by training, I am endlessly obsessed with human behavior–understanding why people do what they do and what motivates them. Add to that the fact that I obsess about food and regularly wonder why more people don’t share my passion for healthy eating, I can’t help but wonder what fuels and facilitates obstacles and resistance to eating vegan. The evidence is unequivocal and mounting: plant-based diets offer remarkable and innumerable benefits for human health and are necessary for preserving both environmental and human wellness. In spite of all this, obstacles and resistance are commonplace.
This is due, in part, to the way that animal-based foods are marketed to consumers and represented generally. Because animal-based foods dominate our traditional meals, they are considered wholesome, delicious, and well-balanced. More recently, some of them are being marketed as humane and/or sustainable as well. For these reasons, animal-based foods are seen as appropriate for everyone.”

But sometimes the facts just aren’t enough. While we can’t, and shouldn’t, force our dietary rubric on those around us, by leading through example it is possible headway to be made. “On a micro level, those of us whose diets are plant-based must continue to be open and accessible to others about it; in a sense, we must continue to minister about it. Knowing or being acquainted with someone whose views or lifestyle are different from one’s own helps grease the wheels of social change by personalizing difference. Obstacles to the mainstreaming of veganism will be more successfully countered when we understand how and why they exist.”

Is What’s Good for the Goose Really Good for the Gander?

The indifferent social view of “to each their own” gives little credence to the healthy, wholesome and ecologically healing foundation of a vegan and/or macrobiotic lifestyle. In part, this may be due to the plain and simple assumption that plant-based food simply doesn’t taste good. Some defensively call to mind the drudged-up memories of ‘grandma eating a strict hotdog n’ hamburger diet her entire life and having never suffered a single health issue.’ Well, grandma’s like those are few and far between, but we’ll save that topic for another blog post… And the argument that plant-based meals can’t rival the tongue-tantalizing capability of meaty dishes? Not only are nutritious vegan/macro recipes satisfying the picky palates of cuisine connoisseurs across the globe, the general public is starting to catch on as well.

“Vegan foods are not only appropriate for some, they’re ideal for everyone. Regardless of whatever differences define or characterize what and how we eat, everyone wants their food to taste good; they want to enjoy it… When done right, vegan food–just like everything else–tastes great. Even if I had actual mathematical skill or ability, I doubt I could count the number of times over the years that someone has expressed surprise over how tasty my vegan meal was. There is virtually no animal-based food anyone could want to eat that doesn’t have a comparable and delicious vegan version or alternative. Based on the universal criteria of taste alone, plant-based foods are fitting for everyone.

Of course, vegan does not necessarily equal healthy, but the fact remains that even the worst vegan foods (e.g., cupcakes, pizza) are healthier than their non-vegan counterparts, with no cholesterol or saturated fat and almost always having far fewer calories. Add to that the unmitigated environmental advantages of a plant-based diet and it’s really plainly obvious: eating vegan isn’t just for some bodies, it’s for everybody.”

Taste of Health Holistic Holiday at Sea is more than a great vegan travel experience, it’s an opportunity to travel and stay healthy while pampering AND educating yourself with current events and trends in the vegan world. On our holistic cruise you will have the opportunity to eat divine meals, make new friends engage with some of the most celebrated personalities of the Vegan Industry. 2013 will mark the 10 year Anniversary of the Holistic Holiday at Sea and there will be tons of socials, great classes, amazing Caribbean ports and even a few surprises. Learning a new way of living has never been so much fun, so easy and so tasty!

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‘Roundup’ the Neighbors and Kids, Folks… This One’s a Doozy

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90-Day GMO & ‘Roundup’ Studies Ending Prematurely – Grave Consequences

A recent French study performed by a team of scientists under the direction of molecular biologist Professor Gilles-Eric Seralini, sustained by CRIIGEN, an independent research organization, produced alarming analyses concerning the digestion of, and long-term reaction to, Monsanto’s genetically modified corn and the company’s renowned weed-killer ‘Roundup’ among groups of lab-rats. The rats were fed a lifetime (two years) of the corn and weed-killer and, after four months since the study’s inception, began showing frightful signs of response which only intensified afterward, implying that the commonly accepted 90-day studies have been ending prematurely in their full analysis of side-effects.

The symptoms of the GM corn and ‘Roundup’ among the lifetime-exposed rodents include massive mammary tumors, multiple organ damage, especially pertaining to the liver and kidneys, as well as heightened mortality rates. The study showed that 70% of female and 50% of male rats died early when contrasted with the respective 20% and 30% death-rates of the control group.

“[The] study published today finds that rats with prolonged exposure to roundup-ridden corn suffered health problems including mammary tumors and severe liver and kidney damage. While numerous 90-day studies have already linked GMO foods to allergies and other health problems, the study, which was published in “Food and Chemical Toxicology,” marks the first-ever long term animal study on the health effects of genetically engineered foods.”

In response, “Monsanto said at the time of the earlier research that the French researchers had reached unsubstantiated conclusions. Seralini believes his latest lifetime rat tests give a more realistic and authoritative view of risks than the 90-day feeding trials that form the basis of GM crop approvals, since three months is only the equivalent of early adulthood in rats.”

In summation of the ‘Sustainable Food Trust’ YouTube video featuring the Director Patrick Holden, genetically modified corn is widely grown in America, fed to commonly consumed livestock, primarily cows, pigs and chickens, which is then digested by humans as processed through animals. ‘Roundup,’ being the world’s most popular weed-killer, is consistently finding its way into our foodstuffs, which could induce severe health-based results.

Counting the Convoluted Cost

It is worth noting that, according to the Reuters.com article from September 19th, “Although the lead researcher’s past record as a critic of the industry may make other experts wary of drawing hasty conclusions, the finding will stoke controversy about the safety of GM crops.

In an unusual move, the research group did not allow reporters to seek outside comment on their paper before its publication in the peer-reviewed journal Food and Chemical Toxicology and presentation at a news conference in London.”

With so many eyes directed toward the aftermath of genetically modified food studies, politics are swimming with intense motions towards monitoring food production and notifying the public on what exactly is being placed on the dinner table. California’s ‘Proposition 37 Right to Know’ initiative promoting the labeling of genetically engineered food is making big waves as America moves toward the November elections. “The initiative has two main provisions: first, requiring ‘labeling on raw or processed food offered for sale to consumers if made from plants or animals with genetic material changed in specific ways,’ and secondly, banning foods from being labeled ‘natural’ when they contain genetically-altered ingredients.”

For now we’ll need to educate ourselves on the facts, act to make our collective voices heard regarding the condition of our personal and communal health, and wait to see what new laws will, or will not, be put in place.

Taste of Health Holistic Holiday at Sea is more than a great vegan travel experience, it’s an opportunity to travel and stay healthy while pampering AND educating yourself with current events and trends in the vegan world. On our holistic cruise you will have the opportunity to eat divine meals, make new friends engage with some of the most celebrated personalities of the Vegan Industry. 2013 will mark the 10 year Anniversary of the Holistic Holiday at Sea and there will be tons of socials, great classes, amazing Caribbean ports and even a few surprises. Learning a new way of living has never been so much fun, so easy and so tasty!







Clinton Stays Healthy After Clipping Ties from Animal Products

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I… No Longer… Have Relations… With That Cheeseburger

After years of indulging on fast food and a smorgasbord of animal products, Clinton’s classic McDonald’s diet began to take its toll on more than just his flabby tummy. As quoted from an August article on Examiner.com, “Clinton switched to a plant-based diet in 2011 and within several months had lost 24 pounds. The previous year, he had two stents placed in his coronary artery after having undergone a quadruple heart-bypass surgery in 2004.” With a family history of heart disease and a lifelong battle with his weight, Clinton celebrated his 66th birthday this August attributing his newfound healthy existence entirely to his lifestyle reformation. This progression came in phases, however.

“When I had my second heart incident [in 2010] and I had the stents put in, I had passed all my physicals, I was doing great, but I was still building up plaque in my arteries,’ he recounted. ‘So I decided that I wanted to see if I could live to be a grandfather, so I just went all the way.’”

Noting Dr. Dean Ornish, Dr. T. Colin Campbell and Dr. Caldwell Esselstyn Jr. as personal guides into the world of healthier living, the old daily, and nightly, feasting rituals no longer hold the same sway over Bill’s belly.

“’I like the vegetables, the fruits, the beans, the stuff I eat now,’ said Clinton, whose weight hovers at around 185 pounds — his weight at age 13! – ‘All my blood tests are good, and my vital signs are good, and I feel good. I also have more energy.’”

From ‘Krispy Kreme’ to Kale & Beans

The former president has formed a massive wave in changing the tide concerning veganism within the celebrity circuit. Veganism is slowly arching into the celestial realm as star-studded elites, including Rev. Al Sharpton, actress Michelle Pfeiffer, and most recently hip-hop artist Usher, align with the concept of removing meat, dairy, eggs and oils from their diet.

With a greener and more grateful outlook on life, Clinton has cited the documentary ‘Forks Over Knives’ and the book ‘The China Study’ as a reminder as to why and how a plant-based diet is such a vital facet in his everyday life. Instead of jogging towards a Mickey D’s, Clinton runs past them, claiming “Getting rid of the dairy was great, getting rid of the meat was — I just don’t miss it.”

So who’s next on the influential former president’s list of new vegan initiates? We’re willing to bet he’ll leave a leafy-legacy with his future grandchildren.

“’Hillary and I, we are happy, we love our son-in-law,’ said Clinton, whose daughter Chelsea got married in July 2012. ‘And we would like to be around if there are grandkids, we would like to do our part.’”

Taste of Health Holistic Holiday at Sea is more than a great vegan travel experience, it’s an opportunity to travel and stay healthy while pampering AND educating yourself with current events and trends in the vegan world. On our holistic cruise you will have the opportunity to eat divine meals, make new friends engage with some of the most celebrated personalities of the Vegan Industry. 2013 will mark the 10 year Anniversary of the Holistic Holiday at Sea and there will be tons of socials, great classes, amazing Caribbean ports and even a few surprises. Learning a new way of living has never been so much fun, so easy and so tasty!





Pardon Me, Yogi – Did You Order the Bacon & Wine Combo?

Some Argue the Road of Good Intentions is Paved with Chocolate

The ‘New York Times’ article When Chocolate and Chakras Collide scrawls a thinly positioned, but investigative line around the narrative of modernized, some would argue highly Westernized, yoga. Specifically eyeballing the American yoga-hub of Los Angeles, California, a clear claim to a theoretically ethical, as well as practical, crisis has evolved concerning the value and yogic benefit of food. But not just any food… Well, actually yes, ANY food! Some yoga practitioners are offering yoga classes which, after flowing through a thorough an intensive, yet welcoming workout, immediately offer luxurious cuisine to class members right on their sweaty yoga mats.

“All had signed up for a strange new hybrid of physical activity: first an hour of vigorous, sweaty yoga, then a multi-course dinner of pasta, red wine and chocolate. As soon as the lights went up, dinner was served on the floor: an (almost) seamless transition designed to allow the yogis to taste, smell and digest in a heightened state of awareness.

‘It’s a little weird to sit on a sweaty yoga mat and eat soup,’ said one woman, not pausing as she spooned up a smooth, cinnamon-spiked butternut squash purée from a bamboo bowl. ‘But people are used to doing some weird things in yoga class.’”

A Stick in the Mud, or a Piggy’s Paradise?

A particularly controversial aspect surrounding the food served during these classes is the departure from traditional fare one would expect to be ubiquitously endorsed at yoga studios. Many would, and have, sounded out against the thematically layering statements made by New York based yoga teacher, Sadie Nardini, who claims “The culture of judgment in the yoga community — I call it “yogier than thou” — is rampant, and nowhere more than around food… Nowhere is it written that only vegetarians can do yoga… We do not live in the time of the founding fathers of yoga, and we don’t know what they wanted us to eat.”

The undeniable pretension purveying from various collectives of outspoken members within the yoga-lifestyle has certainly negatively affected both internal and external views of yoga. However, one cannot argue with the virtues of sincerely adhering to the basic facets of the practice.

“’The very first teaching of yoga forbids us to eat meat,’ said Eva Grubler, director of training at Dharma Yoga in New York, one of the most venerated yoga centers in the country. In the Yoga Sutras, a primary text of yogic philosophy, ethics are broken down into five yamas (things to not do) and five niyamas (things to do). Ahimsa, the first yama, is a prescription not to harm others. But the definition of ‘others’ — whether it includes all animals, or only people, or should perhaps extend to the plant kingdom — is in debate.”

“’Ten years ago we would not even be having this conversation,’ said Ms. Grubler, who added that a vegan diet was a given for her. ‘Yoga used to be much quieter, but now there are more people, they are more activated, and they are questioning everything.’ She says that the true yogic path gradually and organically frees people of desire for meat, dairy, caffeine and alcohol.”

“‘A pure yogic diet is one that is only calming: no garlic, onions or chili peppers, nothing heavy or oily,’ said Ms. Grubler. ‘Steamed vegetables, salads and fresh juices are really the ideal.’ Yogic food choices can also influenced by ayurveda, a traditional Indian way of eating to keep the body healthy and in balance. Some yogis determine their dosha, or dominant humor, vata (wind/air), pitta (bile) or kapha (phlegm), and eat accordingly. Foods are invested with properties like warming or cooling, heavy or light, moist or dry.”

David Romanelli, a yoga instructor based in Phoenix, Arizona who claims to teach “Yoga for the Everyman,” serves bacon and wine during his classes. He’s well aware of the implications of his practice regarding food. The promoted “anything goes, as long as it tastes good” motto has caused many a third-eye to blink twice. More and more yoga teacher are admitting to a “don’t ask, don’t tell” stance towards consuming meat, many agreeing that they’ll happily enjoy the flesh so long as they are aware of its source. For most, however, wine and meat is off the table.

“Bacon, he (Romanelli) said, is a yogic teaching tool, providing an opportunity to contemplate principles of attraction and revulsion, desire and self-denial, and why we are so attracted to things we know to be unhealthy. (It also, of course, provides priceless shock value.)… ‘It’s a way of getting people in the door,’ he said in an interview. ‘The world is a better place if people do yoga. And if they come because chocolate or wine is involved, I’m fine with it.’”

There’s No Justice in Judgment

For many, it may be hard not to become the pawn of pessimism when reflecting on this current trend, Astavakrasana-ing their minds around how such an ancient practice went so ‘wayward.’ While these free-wheeling ‘foodie’ yoga studios may be churning out more indulgence-laden members than Willy Wanka has Oompa Loompa’s, it’s important to stay grounded and to effect change through the sincere practice of yoga. Boulder, Colorado-based yoga instructor, Mary Taylor, having studied with Julia Child at Les Trois Gourmandes, offers this discourse, having established a “middle path” of maintaining her own vegan lifestyle while abstaining from becoming priggish towards those who are not:

“‘If we become aggressive and intolerant towards those who do eat meat, is that an act of kindness?’ she said. ‘If your grandmother is making a wonderful meat dish that you have loved since you were a child, is it yoga to push it away?’”

We’d like to think that since Grandma loves us so much, she’d understand. Grandmas are yoga like that.



Okay, so this article isn’t very vegan, but our Holistic Holiday at Sea Cruise definitely is. However, you will be able to find some wine, chocolate and yoga! Join us in March for an unforgettable and unique vegan travel experience you will thoroughly enjoy. You will add to your existing knowledge of a plant based lifestyle, learn recipes to enhance your vegan meal repertoire, enjoy lectures to expand your mind, make lots of new friends and of course, have lots of fun! We look forward to seeing you on our 10th Anniversary voyage!

‘Vegtoons’ –Outreach to Help Animate the World’s Diet!

A Colorful ‘Kickstart’

Holistic Holiday at Sea is proud to support the ‘Vegtoons’ Kickstarter campaign by offering two cruise tickets as perks for donors who contribute $1,500 or more to the campaign. ‘Vegtoons’ is a charmingly delightful animated series whose aim is not only to entertain viewers, but to act as an educational platform. The goal is to spring-board the promotion of a vegetarian lifestyle to the generalized public which happens to be, by and large, primarily comprised of omnivores. With this ubiquitous standard of living in mind, ‘Vegtoons’ offers a gentle and amicable approach in realizing the various misleading presumptions, apprehensions and disputes pertaining to living a vegetarian lifestyle. “‘Vegtoons’ introduces the main reasons for a vegetarian lifestyle, including: improved health; environmental stewardship; sustainable food practices; & animal welfare.”

Topics include the varieties of foods available within the diet, appreciating and maintaining ethical standards, and how to empathetically and compassionately relate and encourage vegetarianism to those around us, especially our family members and friends who may be at first opposed to the very idea of a plant-based diet.

By opening a colorful window into an open-minded dialog about healthy eating, ‘Vegtoons’ will engage the viewer through the varying thematic episodes, designed to appeal to a much specified audience. “Animation appeals to people across a spectrum of age, culture and literacy. While animation is often associated with children’s programming, the ‘Vegtoons’ animated series is geared primarily for an older audience from the ages of 15 through 55.”


Fund the Fun! – Your Donations Matter

The development and production of ‘Vegtoons’ is dependent upon the donations it receives from its supporters. “Our initial funding goal is to raise $16,000 to complete the first episode of ‘Vegtoons’ and the opening intro for the show. For every additional $20,000 we raise, we can complete another episode, with the ultimate goal to raise $200,000 to finish the whole series, all ten episodes.”

The concept and pilot scene for the animated series has already generated favorable clout from powerhouse crusaders within the plant-based dieting community.  With encouraging words like “I hope the ‘Vegtoons’ project is a huge success” from Dr. Neal Barnard, President of the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine, and statements from Dr. T. Colin Campbell, Researcher and author of ‘The China Study,’ commenting “I personally and enthusiastically support this project. We must continue this common effort in the hope that someday the world will awaken to its possibilities,” the full-development of the series seems promising. But this is still fully reliant on your support. The livelihood of the project is reliant on a minimum of $16,000 which needs to be raised by Saturday Sept. 1, 2:00 am EDT. And even with the praise received from the health-community high-rollers, your donations and inspiring words matter most. The Kickstarter ‘Vegtooms’ page is excited by the potential impact of the new programming reaching new audiences, stating: “The ultimate compliments have come from folks who are not vegetarian, but who may be interested to eat more healthfully. They are inspired to eat more veggies and less meat. This is the very purpose and spirit of the show.”




Give Your Health the ‘Kickstart’ It Has Been Waiting For!

You’re invited to take part in an event that will not only change your entire perspective on what and how you eat, but will genuinely refurbish your entire life. With distinguished doctors, scientists, authors and specialists guiding you along various exciting avenues of health reformation and revitalization, you’ll not only be mentally engaged with well-founded knowledge, but also emotionally stimulated with inspiration and palpably awakened with delicious vegan food!

PCRM’s Kickstart Intensive, October 4th to the 6th, has been carefully designed to fully optimize your ability to learn about, progressively enhance, and embrace your health. With special attention paid towards the most current ubiquitous health issues, President of PCRM, Dr. Neal Barnard will present consolidated courses formulated to focus on how to break food addictions, maintain weight control, confront diabetes and cholesterol, why food is vital for cancer prevention and survival, as well as how foods affect brain health. Michael Greger, M.D., physician, author and Public Health Advocate, will present up-to-the-minute information circulating in nutritional science, and Founder of the Natural Kitchen Cooking School, Chef Christine Waltermyer, will provide demonstrations on easy-to-use techniques for your future cooking accomplishments. Representative Dennis Kucinich and Elizabeth Kucinich will be presenting effective how-to guidelines for following a healthy, plant-based diet while living your active life, both on the road and in public. And if you’re unsure about certain topics concerning your personalized plan for a healthier life, PCRM’s Susan Levin, Director of Nutrition Education, M.S., R.D., and Joseph Gonzales, R.D., look forward to warmly aiding you through your individualized apprehensions with constructive, scientifically-asserted advice.

PCRM’s preliminary Kickstart Intensive program is taking place in Washington, D.C. where participants will be able to sample the finest foods from various restaurants within our Nation’s Capital. Sessions will run from Thursday to Saturday, with welcomed participants receiving everything needed to initiate their revitalized, plant-based life!

Learn more and register now – www.pcrm.org/KickstartIntensive or call 202-527-7337

And, to take advantage of this special 10% discount, click here: http://support.pcrm.org/holistic_holiday.



Macrobiotics: Hundreds of Years of Wisdom

After digesting Ronald L. Peters MD, MPH’s article ‘Macrobiotics: The Ultimate Diet and Medical lessons from my Mother-in-Law‘, the doctor makes a clear statement explaining the naturally nutritional benefits of a macrobiotic diet. Dr. Peters not only offers a sense of necessity to the dietary lifestyle, but also a feeling of biological familiarity. The modification of the human diet throughout history has left us with a long banquet-table of food options, and some, needless to say, afford more valuable sustenance than others.

“Arising from the wisdom of many diverse cultures over hundreds of years, the macrobiotic principles are now merging with modern medical research to create convincing evidence for the best diet for mankind.”

Through studying the scientific basis for the progression of past to current-day dietary necessities for the human body, Peters has reasoned that modern, popular diet trends lack the longevity and insight accumulated within the macrobiotic lifestyle which has become increasingly bolstered by prominent figures in the medical field.

“But none of them stands on anything near the comprehensive epidemiologic research supporting The China Study, and none of them, except perhaps for the Paleolithic diet, is founded upon hundreds of years of ethnic and cultural wisdom as the macrobiotic diet.”

Specifically noted in Peters’ article are four of our valued presenters and progressive health-focused innovators – Dr Neal Barnard, Michio Kushi, Dr. Caldwell Esselstyn, Dr. T. Colin Campbell, as well as Dr. Dean Ornish. Facilitating the chronological advancement of macrobiotic studies, Peters describes how this purifying nutritional alignment, along with his specialized guidance, positively contributed to health improvement of his mother-in-law.

“She was a warm and delightful woman but she struggled to walk with her 230lb on a 5’ 3” frame. She had high blood pressure, diabetes, and chronic fatigue, popping seven medications every day. Fast forward six months and she weighed 170 lbs, having lost 60 lbs and her blood pressure was 125/70 and her fasting blood sugar was 75. She had stopped all her medications under my supervision as her diabetes and high blood pressure were gone. She was walking two to three miles daily without pain and sun tanning by the pool. She had been medically transformed by a low fat macrobiotic diet of whole grains, vegetables, beans, sea vegetables and more, lovingly prepared by my wife, Vesna, a macrobiotic counselor of 16 years.”

Alongside the substantial physical enhancements resulting from her devotion to the macrobiotic diet, Peters’ mother-in-law also experienced gradual emotional and mental equilibrium as well.

“Not only do most diseases gradually fade away as diabetes and high blood pressure did for my Mother-in-Law, but people experience greater mental clarity and emotional stability. Also, as people progress on the path of macrobiotics, they invariably notice that their body communicates to them and “tells” them what foods are best to eat.”

Outlining the 12 reasons to embrace a macrobiotic lifestyle, as observed in Simon G. Brown’s publication ‘Modern Day Macrobiotics,’ Peters calls for faithfulness to the scientifically proven, wholly beneficial qualities of macrobiotics, maintaining dietary simplicity, while still enjoying the fullness of flavor, as present in this culinary criterion.

“The macrobiotic diet is based on the foods eaten by the healthiest societies on earth and it has been used to reverse all types of disease. George Oshawa used macrobiotic principles to cure himself of tuberculosis in 1911 and then spread the word to Europe and America. Mishio Kushi popularized the healing power of whole foods in America. Cancer, heart disease, diabetes, high blood pressure and many other diseases have resolved using the macrobiotic philosophy, providing strong support for the ancient wisdom of Hippocrates who said, ‘Let food be by thy medicine.’”/

On the Holistic Holiday at Sea, macrobiotic meals will be available as well as gluten free and oil free menu options. This vegan travel experience promises to be like nothing else you will encounter in 2013.  This is a unique vacation where there is a community of like minded health conscious individuals, a plethora of menu options to dazzle your taste buds, activities to enliven your body and lectures, seminars and classes to ignite your mind. We look forward to seeing you!

GMO Milk – Cloudy Results

A Breakthrough?

As if the list of dangers concerning the consumption of Genetically Modified Organisms (GMO’s) weren’t prevalent enough, research scientists in Beijing have declared the successful engineering of 300 dairy cattle for the purpose of producing what they claim to be an equivalent to human milk, as stated in the journal ‘Public Library of Science One’ (PLoS ONE). Professor Ning Li, lead researcher in the genetically modified bovine milk project based from the State Key Laboratory for Agro-Biotechnology at the China Agricultural University, explains in the journal how cloning technology allowed for the insertion of human genes into the DNA of dairy calf embryos which were then implanted into surrogate cows. By enhancing the presence of lysozyme, an antimicrobial protein which protects human newborns from infections, the Chinese scientists are seeking to modify bovine milk to reach the 3,000 times more potent lysozyme levels contained within human milk.

In doing so, the dangers run rampant, first specifically for the animals as researchers publicized that only 26 or the 42 genetically modified calves were born. The milk produced by the GMO cows contains unusual proteins to which humans have never been previously exposed. By injecting human genes into foreign DNA strands one can easily contrive the disastrous assumption in believing the resulting milk’s safe for human consumption. One would only have to review the research concerning animals being fed genetically modified food, consistently resulting in problems surrounding their hearts, spleens, livers, kidneys and adrenal glands.

Adding to the gradually increasing series of GMO foods, along with Flavr Savr’s initial rot-resistant tomato from 1994 and AquaBounty’s genetically altered salmon, which experienced heightened growth rates at twice the normal pace. It is questionable at the least if a positive outcome can be derived from these transgenic “advancements.”

The Facts Are Black & White

The real irony in even attempting the scientific venture of genetically modifying cow’s milk is the utter lack of biological necessity. In response to the importance of calcium being placed in the media’s dietary forefront, it has become increasingly obvious that the quantity and sourcing of calcium as recommended by the United States Recommended Daily Allowances (USRDA) is vastly misinforming. Without even wandering onto the moral/ethical tightrope of dairy farming and animal abuse, milk from other animals is scientifically proven as nutritionally too much for human consumption, and also highly dangerous in association with Hypertensive and Rheumatic Heart Disease, as well as various types of cancer, including stomach, brain, breast and cervix cancer.

The milk produced by each mammalian species is specifically formulated to fuel their infant’s growth rate and biological needs during the first weeks, months and/or early years. For instance, with bovine milk containing four times more calcium than human milk. Why would such a high concentration of calcium be a necessity for a human of any age, especially for human adults as our bones cease growing upon maturity? And what of the repercussions from consuming such large quantities of saturated fat and protein as found in cow’s milk?

The fact is that calcium, as well as other hyped forms of nutrition supposedly found in cow’s milk, can be found in a wholly nutritional plant-based diet. Such sources include: collards, spinach, blackeyed peas, broccoli, kale, oranges, cauliflower, Brussels sprouts, tomatoes and almonds.



Lots Going on in the Vegan World…

Queen Of Funk Embraces Vegan Diet to Combat Type 2 Diabetes

For starters, if you are a fan of American Idol, you witnessed the unveiling of the 59 year old, Soul songstress, Chaka Khan. It was a month ago, but it is all over the news and many blogs, that she lost the weight on a Vegan Diet…duh?! Chaka Khan was diagnosed with diabetes late last year. At that time she started fasting and implementing a vegan diet! She states she has never been a fan of exercise and chose to shift her diet and maintain the one exercise she does enjoy…walking! Check out the full story...

PETA Celebrates Compassionate and Beautiful Celebrities

Over at PETA, they did their Sexiest Vegetarian Celebrity competition and Holistic Holiday at Sea repeat attendee, John Salley was one of the nominees! However,the male sexiest vegetarian celebrity award went to Woody Harrelson, formerly of Cheers and most recently of Zombieland and the sexiest female vegetarian celebrity went to the beautiful and elegant Jessica Chastain of The Help and The Debt. For the record, they are both committed vegans.

Just in time for the fourth of July, PETA also has some pretty snazzy Red, White and Delicious recipes!

Vegan Immersion Weekend Takes Place in NYC’s Trendy Soho

The Seed Vegan Experience in NYC over the weekend of June 16th and 17th, was one of the most anticipated vegan events of the year. Apparently, it was well worth the wait with something for everyone. Whether you are a Vegan, considering becoming a vegan or just a plain omnivore that wants to know why anyone would ever stop eating meat. Looking forward to seeing what they have planned for next year! I’ve seen lots of coverage for this story, but I liked the coverage by JL Fields @ www.blogher.com, the best…here’s a link!

2011 Food Documentary Promoting Vegan Diet Gets a Leg Up from HULU

Forks Over Knives gets a boost from Hulu! For a limited time Hulu is allowing access to view this amazing documentary about the advantages of adopting a plant based diet. As you know, this documentary showcases the work of three of our repeat presenters, Dr. Caldwell B. Esselstyn, Dr.T. Colin Campbell and Dr.Neal Barnard.

Bill Clinton Speaks Out

One of the world’s most famous vegans, Bill Clinton offers his support of NYC May Bloomberg’s ban on super size soft drinks…Full story and CNN interview here!

Remember, if you have a friend or friends, that you have been trying to convince to shift to a plant based diet, the Holistic Holiday Cruise at Sea could be the experience for them. There is access to amazing information through lectures, talks as well as the opportunity to speak with an entire community of peot ple already living the vegan lifestyle. They can dine on delicious vegan meals, partake in Holistic activities, pamper themselves and have a true Vegan travel experience. The Holistic Holiday at Sea’s 10th Anniversary promises to be an unforgettable experience!


Preventing Diabetes in a Society Driven by Sugar

Diabetes and obesity are two of the most discussed health issues at the moment. Medical, pharmaceutical, entertainment, wellness organizations, alternative medicine, cooking/culinary industries are all exploring, studying and yes, even exploiting these health issues. Everyday there is an article written, study done or book published on these health conditions facing the people of the good ol’ USA.

One of the biggest issues is sugar. Sugar is in everything and we love it. It’s hard to imagine the American diet without it. Sugar is so prevalent, people are overwhelmed and often are at a loss as to how they should go about cutting back. Plainly put, the statistics for diabetes in this country are nothing short of astounding. See for yourself.

Diabetes Statistics:

  1. Among U.S. residents ages 65 years and older, 10.9 million, or 26.9 percent, had diabetes in 2010.
  2. About 215,000 people younger than 20 years had diabetes—type 1 or type 2—in the United States in 2010.
  3. About 1.9 million people ages 20 years or older were newly diagnosed with diabetes in 2010 in the United States.
  4. Diabetes is the leading cause of kidney failure, non-traumatic lower-limb amputations, and new cases of blindness among adults in the United States.
  5. Diabetes is a major cause of heart disease and stroke.
  6. Diabetes is the seventh leading cause of death in the United States.
  7. In 2005–2008, based on fasting glucose or hemoglobin A1C (A1C) levels, 35 percent of U.S. adults ages 20 years or older had pre-diabetes—50 percent of adults ages 65 years or older. Applying this percentage to the entire U.S. population in 2010 yields an estimated 79 million American adults ages 20 years or older with pre-diabetes.


Health Experts Agree

One factor contributing to both of these conditions, that is agreed upon by all sources, is the intake of sugar. Some would lead you to believe that some forms of sugar are better than others to ingest. While this may be true to a degree, if you suffer from diabetes or obesity the message is pretty much the same…stay away from SUGAR! Check out this video with CNN’s Medical Correspondent, Dr. Sanjay Gupta. He speaks with many health professionals and even has the sugar industry weigh in. It’s quite eye opening!

Sweet Dreams Are Made of This…

After watching that report you might be thinking of a life without any sweetness and you would be incorrect! We are happy to report that we will have the great fortune of having the host of PBS’s Christina Cooks, Christina Pirello giving lectures and teaching cooking classes on our next cruise. One of the lectures will be entitled “How Sweet it Isn’t”. In this lecture she will answer questions like “Is there a place in a healthy diet for sweet decadence?” and “Are we doomed to grimly endure our meals from the day we decide to adopt a healthy lifestyle?” Fortunately for us the answer is NO, and Christina Pirello is happy to provide us with useful information on sugar substitutes and how they differ. Here is a taste of the type of information she will offer…

Taste of Health Holistic Holiday at Sea is more than a great vegan travel experience, it’s an opportunity to travel and stay healthy while pampering AND educating yourself with current events and trends in the vegan world. On our holistic cruise you will have the opportunity to eat divine meals, make new friends engage with some of the most celebrated personalities of the Vegan Industry.  2013 will mark the 10 year Anniversary of the Holistic Holiday @ Sea and there will be lots of socials, great classes, amazing Caribbean ports and even a few surprises. Learning a new way of living has never been so much fun, so easy and so tasty!


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