Episode 17 – Chinese Medicine and Plant Based Eating

Episode 17 – Chinese Medicine and Plant Based Eating

Listen to “Chinese Medicine and Plant Based Eating” on Spreaker.


How does plant based eating fit into the practice of Chinese Medicine? What foods should we be eating in different seasons? In this episode, Ellen Goldsmith, an educator, licensed acupuncturist and Chinese herbalist, and author of Nutritional Healing with Chinese Medicine, discusses the basic principles of Chinese medicine and the interplay with nutrition. She explains how it differs from the Western approach and elucidates the concepts of yin and yang, qi, seasonal eating  and the thermal nature and flavour of food.

In this episode you’ll hear:

 2:30 – Basic principles of Chinese Medicine

3:10 – Yin and yang explained

4:25 – Role of food therapy in Chinese Medicine

5:05 – Where does plant based eating fit in?

5:50 – Difference between Chinese dietary therapy and the Western approach?

10:20 – Seasonal eating with examples of what to eat in winter

13:10 – Recipe examples from Ellen’s book

18:00 – Seasonal eating for spring, summer and fall

23:00 – Qi explained

26:00 – How long does it take to see results from Chinese dietary therapy?

Episode 16 – Clean Haircare with World Hair and Skin Founder Brian Phillips

Episode 16 – Clean Haircare with World Hair and Skin Founder Brian Phillips

Listen to “Clean Haircare with World Hair and Skin Founder Brian Phillips” on Spreaker.


What chemicals are lurking in your shampoo and other haircare products? Do you have skin issues? In the third of three episodes on clean beauty, we chat with celebrity hair designer and World founder, Brian Phillips. After ten years being a hairstylist, Brian developed contact dermatitis on his hands. The culprit? Fragrance in haircare products. Brian shines a light on the over-marketing and greenwashing in the haircare industry and discusses how suffering from his skin condition led him to research and create a line of multi-purpose, non-toxic hair and skin products.

In this episode you’ll hear:

1:50 – How Brian’s contact dermatitis caused by fragrance in haircare products led him to create his own line of hair and skin products

6:20  – Over-marketing and waste in the haircare industry

10:30 – Haircare ingredients and their link to illness

13:40 – State of regulation of toxic chemicals: Canada v US

16:30 – What is the biggest offender in haircare products? Colour? Hair straighteners?

22:30 – Gluten free and vegan haircare

25:00 – What’s not plant based in haircare products

29:00 – Brian’s top ingredients to avoid in shampoos and conditioners

Episode 15 – Clean Makeup with Vapour Beauty Co-Founder Krysia Boinis

Episode 15 – Clean Makeup with Vapour Beauty Co-Founder Krysia Boinis

Listen to “Clean Makeup with Vapour Beauty Co-Founder Krysia Boinis” on Spreaker.


What is the toxic exposure in makeup? In the second of three episodes on clean beauty, we chat with a pioneer in clean beauty and co-founder of Vapour Beauty, Krysia Boinis. A breast cancer survivor, Krysia discusses why she started a non-toxic deodorant company and her own line of all natural cosmetic products. In this eye-opening discussion, you’ll hear what’s actually in conventional makeup and why you might want to change what you buy.

In this episode you’ll hear:

1:50 – Krysia’s wellness journey

6:05 – The importance of non-aluminum deodorant

9:30 – Size of the cosmetic industry and the growth of clean cosmetics

11:00 – Conventional cosmetic toxic ingredients that we’re putting on our skin

14:10 – Why vegan makeup might not be always healthy

15:30 – Animal products in makeup and cruelty free testing

17:05 – Understanding cosmetic ingredients

22:30 – Lack of government regulation in the US makeup industry

24:30 – What sets Vapour products apart?

29:40 – Krysia’s top 5 makeup products and how to figure out your undertone

Episode 14 – Clean Beauty with Skincare Company Founder Indie Lee

Episode 14 – Clean Beauty with Skincare Company Founder Indie Lee

Listen to “Clean Beauty with Skincare Company Founder Indie Lee” on Spreaker.


It’s not only what we eat but what we put onto our skin that’s important for our health. After all, skin is our body’s largest organ. In this episode, which is 1 of 3 episodes we’re dedicating to the topic of clean beauty, we chat with the founder of the clean, eco-chic skincare line, Indie Lee. After a successful surgery to remove a brain tumor in 2009, Indie embarked on a new journey to create a clean beauty collection dedicated to inspiring and empowering others to be mindful about what they put on their skin. It’s quite shocking what you might be putting on your skin.

In this episode you’ll hear:

1:00 – How Indie Lee got into clean beauty

7:15 – Harmful skincare ingredients, endocrine disruption and cancer

8:45 – What are people putting on their skin that they’d be surprised to hear about?

10:00 – Cosmetic industry regulation in the US v. EU and clean products certification

12:40 – How to find clean skincare products and understand ingredient lists

20:15 – Some Indie Lee products explained

23:00 – Indie’s morning and night skincare routine

27:45 – Size of clean skincare industry

29:10 – Esther and Indie talk diet, health and being plant-forward

How to Pack the Perfect Plant-Based Pantry

By Laura Baum

Stocking your pantry is an art. You want to make sure you have the correct staples, in the perfect quantities, in the ideal sizes to fit in your cupboards – which for me is tough given my condo kitchen. Space and pantry efficiency is key. If you are new to plant-based eating or want to start including more plant-based foods into your daily routine, this article is for you! If you are already following a plant-based diet and could perhaps use a pantry check-in, check out the more advanced options later in the blog.

Here are my top plant-based pantry staples which I recommend to keep on hand, and stock up whenever you see them on sale at the grocery store:

  1. Canned proteins: chickpeas, mixed beans, lentils, and any other bean of choice.

Chickpeas have soluble fiber which forms a gel in our digestive tract and helps absorb and excrete cholesterol, lower blood sugar, and makes us feel full. Canned proteins are convenient and cost-effective. Simply rinse them in water, drain, and eat.

  1. Grains: pasta, quinoa, barley, rice, couscous, etc.

Choose whole grains when you can, which include barley, couscous, and brown or wild rice. Whole grains will add more fiber into your meal, which keeps you feeling full for longer. You always want to pair carbohydrates with a source of protein for a balanced meal. I am not opposed to white pasta or rice. I do feel they have a purpose in our diet – comfort food, after all. Just be more mindful of the portion sizes of these white options, and how often you are consuming them.

  1. Nuts + Nut Butters:

The list is endless for nuts, whether one type or a mix. Many nuts have now been made into nut butters, in addition to the classic peanut butter. Nuts and nut butters contribute monounsaturated heart healthy fats, protein, as well as some fiber. Nuts can be quite filling and are a great snack and topping. They are excellent for taking with you on the go, in the car, or in your purse. Be mindful as a portion of nuts is ¼ cup or 2 tbsp of nut butter.

  1. Seeds: chia, flax, pumpkin, hemp:

Seeds pack an excellent amount of fiber per tablespoon. Throw them into a smoothie, in your cereal, parfait, salad, even baking. Whole flax seeds will contribute the fiber benefit, whereas the ground equivalent will contribute fiber and the omega-3 benefits. Ground flax can also be used in a flax egg as an egg substitute. Hemp hearts are a complete protein source, which means it contains all the amino acids our body needs in this one food, not a common characteristic of plant-based foods.

  1. Flavouring Agents:

This category is also endless. All these items are the flavour enhancers which is half the fun of cooking and experimenting in your kitchen. Of source, salt and fat make our food taste good, but they are a part of a wide repertoire of options. Start with a few staples, which can go a long way! A few examples of dried herbs and spices include salt, pepper, cumin, paprika, Italian mix, red pepper flakes, and garlic powder. Liquid flavouring agents include olive oil, balsamic vinegar, soy sauce, ketchup, mustard, and tomato paste or sauce, to name a few. These contribute to the enjoyment of foods, bring out individual preferences and creativity, and are a way to learn about different cultures and cuisines.

For those who already have these items confidently stocked up, here are my more advanced pantry packing ideas:

  1. Protein Powders:

These can be used in smoothies to grab and go, smoothie bowls, baking, pancakes, and more. They are a dense protein option, as sometimes when following a plant-based diet, it can be tough to ensure you are consuming enough protein daily.

  1. Tetra Packed Milks:

These are useful to keep in a pantry for times when you run out of milk (or alternatives) in your fridge and may not be going grocery shopping for a while. They have an excellent shelf-life. Each time before pouring, give these a good shake, as a lot of the added calcium can sediment to the bottom.

  1. Nutritional Yeast:

Also a complete protein source, nutritional yeast increases the overall protein composition of a meal. It also adds a naturally cheesy flavour. Look for the fortified version which has Vitamin B12, an important vitamin for plant-based eaters to note.

  1. Corn Starch:

Helps thicken soups, broths or any liquid being heated that requires thickening. It is also a great option to coat tofu to make it crispy. Corn starch has similar uses to flour but is a gluten free option.

  1. Soba Noodles:

Soba noodles are made of buckwheat, a whole grain, and therefore are a higher fiber noodle. Soba noodles also have more protein than a white noodle alternative. Great for stir fries and Asian-inspired dishes and they are tasty as the base of a hot or cold dish.

There you have it – my list of non-perishable plant-based pantry staples. These are primarily protein and starch options, so ensure you add vegetables and fruit to your meals and snacks to make a balanced plate. Packing your pantry should be fun and exciting, as with cooking. Health starts at home, and the more comfortable we are in our kitchen, the more we improve our food skills and take control of our health and lifestyle. Cooking as simply as with 5 key ingredients is exactly how I learned to cook, and I still hold onto these tips today. Experiment with what you have, learn through making mistakes, trial and error, and most of all – have fun in your kitchen! The more food skills we develop, the better off we will be.

Laura Baum is a Dietitian and Founder of Baum’s Box. Baum’s Box is the first dietitian curated food box in Toronto. A Baum’s Box contains all the non-perishable food staples you need to outfit one’s pantry. Containing over 30 dietitian curated non-perishable food items, as well as a 50-page healthy eating toolkit, a Baum’s Box provides tools to establish healthy habits for life. Perfect as an original housewarming gift, an elegant thank you gift, a practical wedding gift, a staple university kit, or an ideal gift to oneself!

Additional Resources
Alternative Food Network. “Plant-Based Pantry Essentials”, Plant-Based Diet podcast series, July 2021. http://alternativefoodnetwork.com/plant-based-diet/episode-12-plant-based-pantry-essentials/

 All content provided or opinions expressed are for informational purposes only and are not a substitute for professional medical advice. Please see advice from a qualified healthcare practitioner.



Episode 13 – What Does Whole Food Plant-Based Mean?

Episode 13 – What Does Whole Food Plant-Based Mean?

Listen to “What Does Whole Food Plant-Based Mean?” on Spreaker.


A vegan or plant-based diet is not necessarily synonymous with a healthy diet. In this episode, plant-based lifestyle coach and cookbook author Kathy Davis discusses how to transition to plant-based eating in a healthy way and what being whole food plant-based is all about. Kathy herself lost 35 pounds on a plant-based diet after setting a goal to eat more plants and less processed foods. As a bonus, Kathy goes into the kitchen and prepares a delicious whole food plant-based salad.

In this episode you’ll hear:

Interview with Kathy Davis

1:00 –Kathy’s plant-based eating journey and how she lost weight

4:20 – What is a whole food plant-based diet?

7:20 – Kathy’s answers to “What should I cook?” and “How do I stick to plant-based eating?”

In the kitchen with Kathy

10:30 – Ingredients for Broccoli, Chickpea, and Walnut Salad with Maple-Mustard Dressing Recipe

13:15 – Nutritional benefits of the salad

14:30 – Putting the salad together

15:45  Making the Dressing

Episode 12 – Plant-Based Pantry Essentials

Episode 12 – Plant-Based Pantry Essentials

Listen to “Plant-Based Pantry Essentials” on Spreaker.


Let’s help you stock your pantry! In this quick episode about plant-based pantry essentials, registered dietitian Laura Baum discusses useful pantry items for a plant-based diet plus their health benefits.

In this episode you’ll hear:

0:45 – Basic pantry items for a plant-based diet and their health benefits

9:35 – Advanced pantry item suggestions

10:40 – What is nutritional yeast

13:20 – Laura’s top 3 pantry items

Forget creatine scoops — I consume a handful of locusts for my pre-workout


No, I don’t get my gains on an episode of Fear Factor. I’m a regular guy with a regular workout routine and I’m getting the all-natural protein my muscles need from packages of ground, flavoured locusts. It’s true.

If eating locusts sounds crazy, it’s time to wake up and smell the Acrididae. Cultures throughout Asia, Central America, and the Middle East have chowed down on these arthropods for centuries. In fact, it’s the most widely eaten insect on the planet. The insane idea of eating locusts is only foreign to the North American and European market…but that’s about to change.

Hargol: Delivering Protein That’s Healthy & Sustainable

As the only kosher and Halal (processed) insect on the market, Israeli company Hargol is primed to cater to the millions around the world who lick up locust as a high-demand delicacy. Their line of vacuum sealed locust products provides superior nutrition content. Locusts are sustainable to farm and most importantly, they clear regulation as a safe and clean food source that includes zero antibiotics, fertilizers, pesticides, hormones, and GMOs.

In short, the only plague you’ll be seeing from these locusts are the droves of men and women rushing to the supermarket when Hargol arrives in North America.

Taking “Rustling Up Some Grub” To A New Level

We all have different fitness goals and we’re unfortunately spoiled for choice when it comes to protein supplements. If you’re like me and want an effective, environmentally-friendly way to boost your workout — without putting a mix of “enhancement” ingredients you can’t pronounce into your body — then Hargol’s Dried Grasshopper Powder will do the trick.

This protein supplement delivers a whole lot of power. Combined with whey, this pre-workout concoction amps up your intake, providing 930% taurine, 658% Omega 3,6 & 9, and 2,321% more essential amino acids than whey alone. Trust me: it works andtastes great.

Best of all, Hargol has more than one way to get your protein for the day.

Don’t worry, Hargol doesn’t expect you to pour your almond milk into a big bowl of bugs. Their pancake mix was made for those who need a healthy, hearty, and absolutely delicious breakfast. Just add some berries or bananas — or a few chocolate chips if it’s your cheat day — drizzle that maple syrup on top and POW! It revved my morning up faster and longer than any cup of coffee could ever dream.

Not one for getting comfortable in your breakfast nook? Hargol understands that you’ve got to get up and get going as fast as possible. That’s why their chocolate smoothie mix is so clutch. If a late-start turns my pancake plans upside down, a Chocolate and Nut Smoothie Mix with a punch of locust protein power gave me the energy I need. I just whipped it up with a little vanilla yogurt and voilà, breakfast on the go — which, to my sweet tooth’s surprise, actually tasted more like a pureed sundae.

I can’t wait for Hargol to hit the North American market. People of all ages and fitness levels are craving a protein source and Hargol’s brilliant idea is going to knock it out of the park. Can’t stomach the thought of eating locust? One bite will have you crawling back for more.

DAVE GORDON is a freelance writer. His work has appeared in more than a hundred publications around the world, including BBC, Globe and Mail, National Post, and Washington Times.

Episode 11 – Vegan Athlete Diet with Former NHL Player TJ Galiardi

Episode 11 – Vegan Athlete Diet with Former NHL Player TJ Galiardi

Listen to “Vegan Athlete Diet with Former NHL Player TJ Galiardi” on Spreaker.
Have you ever wondered what pro athletes eat or whether vegan diets are good for athletes? In this episode, former NHL hockey player TJ Galiardi provides a window into what he and his teammates ate before and after games, when and why he became vegan and the changes that resulted. You’ll hear TJ’s sports nutrition insights and even if you’re not a professional athlete, you’ll get some tips on what to eat to achieve optimal results when exercising or engaging in sports.

In this episode you’ll hear:

1:50 – TJ’s story on becoming a vegan while playing professional hockey in the NHLM

6:00 – Plant-based & vegan in the NHL today

7:30 – When and what TJ and his teammates ate before a game or practice

11:20 – TJ’s current favorite recreational sport and what he eats

14:00 – Best ways to hydrate for exercise and sports

15:50 – Recovery foods postgame or after training

19:00 – TJ’s opinion on the need for supplements for vegan athletes

20:20 – Can a teen be vegan and excel at sports

Episode 10 – Healthy Snack Recipes

Episode 10 – Healthy Snack Recipes

Listen to “Healthy Snack Recipes” on Spreaker.


Learn how to make two plant-based healthy snack recipes, one savoury and one sweet, with Physician & Culinary Medicine Expert Dr. Sabrina Falquier. The savoury snack being made during this podcast is popcorn and the sweeter snack is chocolate bark. You can join along in your kitchen or simply listen and save this episode for another time when you’re ready to make these guilt-free snacks.

Popcorn Ingredients:

  • Air popped popcorn or microwave popcorn. You’ll need ½ cup dried kernels and a paper bag (like a lunch paper bag) if you’re popping the popcorn in a microwave, or 1 store-bought bag of plain popcorn.
  • 1 ½ tsp Tabasco sauce
  • 1 tsp Tajin (which is a Mexican spice) or Chili powder
  • Lemon or lime rind (optional)

Chocolate Bark Ingredients

  • 1 – 10 oz. bag chocolate chips or a 2 – 4 oz. bar of dark chocolate (total about 2 cups chopped, before melting), cut into rough 1/4-1/2 inch pieces. If you want this to be vegan, make sure you are using vegan chocolate.
  • Toppings of your choice. Some suggestions;
  • 1/2 cup dried fruit of your choice (dark cherries, apricots), roughly chopped
  • 1/2 cup nuts of your choice (pecans, walnuts), roughly chopped
  • 1/4 cup dried, unsweetened shredded coconut
  • Fresh berries of your choice like blueberries or raspberries which are lower sugar fruits