Former NBA star John Salley (one my favorite leading vegans) and I have seen each other at a million events but finally got to hang out this past week when I was a guest on his live-streaming internet show, The Big V with John Salley. (Side note: is this not one of the funniest pictures, you guys?! I think Bob Marley is taller than me!).
Watch the episode here:
Let alone that John is insanely entrepreneurial and has a million vegan products across industries, and let alone that he is constantly lending himself to speaking engagements to promote health and wellness, John is a wonderful, real, open, straight-forward, hilarious person whose approach to vegan leadership I love. So I was thrilled to be on the show and talk not only about what's inside The Help Yourself Cookbook for Kids, but about the concept childhood, the transformative power of veganism, and about ALL my non-children's book art that I never get to show you—you'll see some of my paintings in the background while we talk. Check it out!
P.S. Don't forget that Help Yourself pre-orders get FREE bonus materials for a limited time, so furry up, watch the trailer, and make your order here!
Photo: UFC 196 McGregor vs Diaz
Known for being rough around the edges—even more than your typical professional fighter—it might come as a shock to some that last night's UFC 196 winner Nate Diaz has been "ruffing" it by eating vegan and experimenting with raw foods for twelve years, since he was eighteen years old.
"I switched to a total vegan diet some time ago – no meat or dairy, and I feel stronger than ever and my endurance is only getting better.” Diaz has said, having taken a cue from his teammate Jake Shields, who grew up veg, as well as his older brother Nick, who says, "I eat no meat or dairy, and I not only fight, but compete in triathlons. I am a big believer in a clean diet."
On March 5, in a short physical battle that threw a wrench in Connor McGregor's undefeated record, Diaz was also incidentally victorious in the symoblic battle between camps. Leading up to the match—for which Diaz had only 11 days notice—McGregor had likened Diaz to a wounded gazelle who was heavy on his feet.
“I’m a lion in there,” he told Diaz. “Your little gazelle friends are going to be staring though the cage looking at you and your carcass getting eaten alive. All they’re going to do is say: ‘We’re never going to cross this river again.’”
Ido Portal, a coach from McGregor's camp had also expressed doubts about plant-based diets being healthy for top-tier competitive athletes, having stated, "I can't view vegan diets as something healthy. I've never met a vegan who was able to perform with the same energy levels as I see with someone with a more carnivore diet. I actually refuse to work with vegans."
Well, gazelle beats lion. How 'bout them apples?
From Nate's Instagram account, thanking Garden of Life Raw for their vegan supplements:
My born-and-raised-vegan 11-year-old step-daughter, Akira, has been training and competing in Jiu Jitsu and wrestling for over a year, winning competition after competition (the Diaz brothers are some her favorites, of course). We know that one major factor of her physical and psychological strength, exceptional cardio, and endurance, agility, and flexibility is our nutrient-dense, junk food-free, vegan lifestyle.
Akira's health and gentle warriorship are two of the reasons I am so proud to be releasing my latest book, The Help Yourself Cookbook for Kids— a new resource for families who want to start their children on a path of health, wellness, and a high quality of life.
This book is full of the things we actually eat in our house—whole, unprocessed ingredients, and superfoods, too—stuff that vegan athletes eat! The recipes and meal ideas are simple enough for a kid to prepare, making the cookbook a great go-to for everyday healthy choices the whole family can use. It also happens to be more than 90% gluten free. Click here to watch a trailer, pre-order, and get some free bonuses, too.
Cheers to plant power and vegan warriors—whatever shape, size, and demeanor they come in!
My bestie, Lisa (side note: veg since age 12) is always put together—clothes, hair, and nails did. To paint you a picture—once, in the wee hours of the morning, I picked her up from the hospital after a minor medical procedure. As they rolled her out, whoozy in a wheelchair, I was amused, but not shocked to see that she was nevertheless wearing a classy large-brimmed hat, sunglasses, and a beautiful wraparound scarf, an architectural weekender handbag perched on her lap. Every nurse she passed complimented her on different items head to toe. She struck up conversations and waved to them with perfectly manicured hands. I, on the other hand, was wearing the sweatpants I had slept in, juggling my jingling keys and ragged clutch, and was avoiding human contact. I was wearing glasses, but they were the seeing kind.
Lisa, even at 7 am, medicated and wobbly, had dressed to make sure she felt as good as she could, given the circumstances, and I appreciated it. She looked like a grown woman, and people treated her as such. She was having fun interacting with the outside world.
That's why, after Lisa nagging me to get nicer, grown-up-lady stuff, I started to listen.
I still feel most comfy in all black everything, but I know I can wear nice all-black-everything things that make me feel good, feel confident, and feel more me...things that make life a little more fun, too!
So I am proud to say that I found something great to continue my "adulting" mission: the GUNAS Naomi handbag. A) I love it, b) it's black, c) I actually need it for travel, d) it's good-lookin', sturdy, and practical, e) I feel ethically good about it, and f) it makes me feel okay about attracting some attention because g) it's vegan!
Also h) it's Lisa-approved. These are her custom-manicured hands handling my new bag...you don't want to see mine. I may have conquered getting a purse, but nails are another story.
The first time I wore it was to a business meeting and I tell you what! It actually did make a difference to how I felt! I was carrying all my meeting documents, my book, and a big camera in the Naomi and it still felt sleek. I wasn't juggling my keys and clutch, so my hands were free for greetings, and I found myself walking more gracefully!
It is just a bag—but truth to tell, I really did feel more put together, presentable, and confident carrying this accessory. And when I got complimented on my Naomi, I had the opportunity to mention that it's actually vegan—no cow, ostrich, or crocodile skin. The complimenter was further intrigued. Score.
So you can save the world and look good doing it. Sometimes we just need a nudge from our more fashionable friends...thanks Lisa and GUNAS!
GUNAS has been kind enough to provide my readers with the following coupon code—just in time for Valentine's Day, too! I highly suggest getting a gift for a grown-up lady you love...maybe that's yourself!
Through February 15, use code RUBYROTH at checkout to get free gift wrapping on orders under $100 and a free Farm Charm on orders $100 and up. Visit www.GunasTheBrand.com.