Vegan Bytes #39: Following the Plate Rule for Balanced Meals

Welcome to the subscriber group! Our newsletter focuses on helping you learn more about veganism and how to apply it to your daily life. Vegan Bytes is dedicated to keeping you up-to-date with the world of food, answering your vegan nutrition questions, and providing you with ideas on ways to spread your lifestyle beliefs.

In this issue...

*Vegan Thoughts: Balancing Your Diet with the Plate Rule
*Nutritional Spotlight: Blueberry Star Power
*Question: "Is there such a thing as gluten-free seitan?"
*Question: "How do you cook greens?"
*Vegan Ebooks: Our Complete Collection of Downloadable Ebooks
*Recipe of the Month: Delectable Raw Blueberry Cheesecake
*What's New?: What's New With Vegan Nutritionista?

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Balancing Your Diet with the Plate Rule


For a long time I've been suggesting the best way to make sure you get the appropriate kinds of food in your diet is to use your dinner plate for a guide.

Half the plate should be filled with vegetables, and the more variety, the better. A quarter should be whole grains, and the remaining quarter should be beans. Fruits for snack, as condiments, and as desserts. To top it off, nuts/seeds/healthy oils as condiments and snacks.

Eating those proportions will keep you healthy and feeling balanced.

Not long ago, the USDA released a new shape to their food guide; a circle. For as many years as I can remember, they had the handy food pyramid to guide us on what to eat, but it just wasn't practical. Most people don't keep track of absolutely everything they eat in a day, and it's hard to remember how much you need of everything.

The new USDA food guide is called MyPlate, and I think it has several excellent pointers about how to eat a healthy, balanced diet, and I'm happy to say that they're minimizing their suggestions for dairy and meat. It's definitely worth a few minutes of your time to customize yourself with their guidelines and see if you agree with me that it's better than the old food guide pyramid.

What do you think of the new food guide?


Nutritional Spotlight: Blueberries are Nutritional Rock Stars

Bucket of Blueberries

Blueberries are the second most popular fruit across the United States, and they're highly popular all around the world, so I can be pretty sure you're going to love this month's nutritional spotlight.

Blueberries are packed with nutrients and have actually been proven to help prevent many serious health issues like obesity, cardiovascular disease, and diabetes. Even if you suffer from none of those ailments, the antioxidants in blueberries will help maintain healthy weight and blood pressure levels, and they work like natural anti-depressants, keeping you happy and healthy for longer.

Click for a full article on the health benefits of blueberries.

And, don't forget to check out this month's featured recipe, featuring our featured fruit, the blueberry!


Question: "Can I make gluten-free seitan?"



What can I use to make my own gluten-free seitan? I use a lot of legumes and nuts but would love to make nuggets and things as occasional treats for kids parties. My other question is about cheeses. What is a good recipe for "vegan cheese"? Is there such a thing as a nice soy cheese? Can I use tofutti the way I would use a cheese sauce for mac'n'cheese or cauliflower au gratin? What's best for risottos and pizzas?



This was a fun question to get because it's different. Gluten-free seitan? It never crossed my mind and I wanted to know the answer too. It turns out there are some options! Read to find out about Gluten-Free Seitan and also check out my opinion on the best vegan cheeses on the market.


Question: How do you cook greens?"


My mom recently told me she doesn't like the beet greens that come right out of her garden, and I was shocked. I asked her how she was cooking them, and I found the reason. I doubt I'd have liked them that way either. In her honor, we put together a page about how to cook greens.

Read to learn the best ways to cook greens.


Have unresolved questions about veganism? Join in the discussion on our site by asking and answering questions, as well as commenting on other answers. It's fun and helpful!


Vegan Nutritionista Downloadable EBooks

The Vegan Bread Box: 30 Simple and Delicious Vegan Bread Recipes

Tiny Bread Cover

This is our most recently created ebook, and it's been overwhelmingly successful. I've found it really difficult to find a vegan bread cookbook on the internet; there are tons of recipes out there, but they're scattered all over different sites and you never know which ones are good. This book has everything from an eggless brioche to a classic whole wheat boule recipe, so you'll never have to go scrounging the internet again. I'm so happy people have gotten so much out of this ebook.

Several recipe testers help make sure the bread recipes come out perfectly, so they are flavor/texture/instruction-tested and approved! Learn more about the bread baking tip that's almost too easy here or download your copy for only $7.95 now.

NEW!!! iPad/Kindle/Kobo/Reader Formatted bread recipes for only $6.99!

Have a Kindle? Get
To buy The Vegan Bread Box on Amazon.
Or, to buy the The Vegan Bread Box on iTunes,
click here.

Vegan Meal Plans for Spring/Summer

Spring Menus Newsletter
The spring meal plan book is available and is getting great reviews! It focuses on seasonal spring vegetables like kale, lettuce, carrots, peas, strawberries, tomatoes, peppers, and more! Just like in the original Vegan Nutritionista meal plans, the menus include 66 recipes for full dinners for 4 work weeks complete with nutritional information, tips, and many pictures. No repeats! Get your Vegan Meal Plan for Spring/Summer, now for just $9.75.

Vegan Meal Plans for Fall/Winter

Fall Menus Newsletter

Vegan Meal Plans is a complete meal plan for one month vegan weekday dinners. It includes 64 recipes, pictures, nutritional information, grocery lists, and tips and techniques. Everyone from those beginning a vegan diet to those veterans who want fresh menu ideas love this ebook. It focuses on fresh, local, and seasonal vegetables and uses all normal ingredients-- no fussy or gourmet skills needed. Download a copy for only $9.75 here.

Soak, Rinse, Boil! Your Complete Guide to Cooking Beans and Grains

Tiny Soak Rinse Boil Cover

Soak, Rinse, Boil! is a complete guide to cooking beans and grains. Don't worry about picking up endless cans of beans that need to be rinsed to reduce the sodium. Control all your own additives with fresh, homemade beans and grains. This guide teaches how to soak, how to boil, what spices to add and when, and how to store your finished product. Download a copy for only $4.75 here.

*Note* If you are an owner of A Fresh New Vegan You, you have a very similar guide in your ebook already. This is a printable handbook to store in the kitchen near your dried beans and grains.

Just the Menus Ebook Package Deal

Just the Menus

Just the Menus Ebook Package allows you to have both Vegan Nutritionista meal plans, one for the fall/winter and one for the spring/summer at a discounted rate. Download your copy for only $16.99 here.

Vegan Grocery List

This massive, complete vegan grocery list is the only one you'll ever need. Print out copies of it to hang on your fridge, and then mark what you need as you go throughout the week. Download a copy for only $0.99.

A Fresh New Vegan You

A Fresh New Vegan You is a complete look at why people go vegan, including information about factory farms, the environment, and the health benefits. It provides details on how to go vegan, and offers basic vegan nutritional advice, as well as information on vegan pregnancy and raising vegan children. This ebook combines all my vegan research into one easy, convenient location. Download a copy for only $27 here.

Entire Collection of Ebooks Deal:

Complete Package Order Button

Get The Vegan Bread Box, A Fresh New Vegan You, Vegan Meal Plans and Vegan Meal Plans for Spring with a free copy of the massive Vegan Grocery List for only $49.95. Save 15%! Download this package here.*Note: this does not include Soak, Rinse, Boil! because you get it within A Fresh New Vegan You.


Recipe of the Month: Raw Blueberry Cheesecake

Blueberry Cake

The raw food movement has been steadily gaining ground, and as it does, exclusively raw restaurants have become all the rage. They not only showcase the best attributes of raw fruits and vegetables, but they also dehydrate, rehydrate, soak, and blend up nuts, seeds, and grains into amazing dishes.

One of the specialties of raw restaurants is usually the dessert case. If you've never been to a raw restaurant, you'd be shocked at how good a raw strawberry shortcake can be, or how raw chocolate mousses fluff up just like their old fashioned egg-filled cousins (or even the vegan tofu mousses) do.

This month's recipe is a special one, designed based on some fresh blueberry picking we just did at a local u-pick farm. Check out my recipe for the most amazing, light and fluffy, as well as decadent, Raw Blueberry Cheesecake.



Follow us on Twitter, Facebook,
and our Blog

Vegan Nutritionista is constantly growing and changing, and if you signed up for this newsletter a long time ago, you might not have read our new information. Our blog page keeps you up-to-date with new articles on the site.


We're in the process of updating the design of our website. I sometimes had a hard time fitting everything I wanted to say into the two columns we used to use, so now we have three columns. And, we'll be transitioning over to a really pretty color scheme. Nothing changes for you; all the content is exactly the same. I hope you like it!


We also now have a vegan forum where you can find topics submitted by users for discussion, answers, and places to add your own input. There is no member name required to participate, so you can jump right in and






Thank you to our newsletter sponsors!

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Vegan Essentials is one of my very favorite places to shop for vegan supplies. They have everything from clothes and shoes to vegan cheese, and their prices are the best around.

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Site Build It!

If you're a vegan nutritionista yourself and have always thought about running a blog with your vegan recipes, you should think about an SBI website. I would never have known how to start a website, let alone get Vegan Nutritionista to the successful place it is right now without Site Build It, and I can't recommend it enough. If you are passionate about anything, any hobby, lifestyle, food, drink, or culture, you can start a website about it. All you have to do is love it, research it, and learn to "talk" about it and SBI will guide you to making it financially successful.


I am an affiliate for these newsletter sponsors, so anytime someone buys something from these stores after using a link from our site, I make a small commission on it. But, I do promise that I would never recommend something that I don't use and love myself. So if you see a link on our site for something you like, you can support their company and the running of Vegan Nutritionista as well, or you can always choose to go directly to the company.

And don't forget, a percentage of all Vegan Nutritionista profits go to a rotating group of charities that benefit animals. Last year, we donated to Vegan Outreach and to start off this year we donated to Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine and PETA (for help rescuing animals after Japan's disasters.


That's all for this month!! I hope you enjoyed reading it. Have a great month!


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