Living Squirrel_with_nut

Published on December 9th, 2010 | by Justin Van Kleeck

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Go Nuts (and Go Vegan) This Holiday Season

Squirrel_with_nutOne of my fondest memories of the holiday season is bowls, jars, bags, and even bottoms of stockings filled with nuts–of all shapes, sizes, hues…and degrees of difficulty to open! Whether it be the smooth, round umber of chestnuts, or the oblong tan of almonds, or the football-like pecan, December was always a nutty month to say the least (sorry, I could not resist).

Nowadays, as a strict vegan, I rely even more on nuts (which are, technically speaking, really just seeds but special in being encased in a hard outer shell) for many of my essential nutrients. And lots of research in recent years has revealed just how nutritious nuts (and seeds) are for us.

For example, the Mayo Clinic has a great site extolling the delicious, nutritious nut. Although many so-called health experts and fad diets pooh-poohed fat in any and every form, we know now that the health fats in nuts can help to lower LDL (“bad”) cholesterol. That helps to reduce the risks of heart disease and heart attacks. In addition, nuts are good sources of Omega-3 fatty acids, fiber, vitamins, minerals, and even antioxidants.

So, now that you can feel good about cracking, shelling, peeling, and munching the many nuts you find during the holidays, you might be wondering what else you can do besides carry a nutcracker around with you and nibble them like a squirrel.

Nut Recipes and Ideas for the Holidays

Luckily, there are some scrumptious vegan ways to liven up the nuts and make special treats for the holidays–without causing needless suffering to animals in the process. Here are some great recipes and resources for cool ways to go nuts about nuts:

The holiday season is a time of joy…and, as I am sure we all can agree, also a time that makes you a little nuts. That makes it one of the best times to celebrate with healthy, cruelty-free recipes that put those many nuts to good use!

As for the humans that drive you nuts, you will have to find your own (hopefully cruelty-free) ways to deal with them…

Happy Holidays, everyone!

Stuck on stocking stuffers? We’ve got lots of green suggestions, from organic nuts and dried fruit to hemp wallets to Fair Trade earrings.

Want more ideas for meatless meals? Check out the vegetarian and vegan recipes available at Eat.Drink.Better.

Image credit: Axpd, from Wikimedia Commons, under a Creative Commons License.



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About the Author

I am an ethical vegan (since 1999), a writer, an educator, an activist, an organizer, and a vegan-of-all-trades. I have a PhD in English but then left academia to work on social change. I focus on veganism, animal rights, local foods, farming practices, environmentalism, and sustainability--starting from the position that humans are just one part of the biosphere, not the center of it.



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