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VSS eNewsletter 7 March 2007

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  • Vegetarian Society (Singapore)
    VSS eNewsletter 7 March 2007 www.vegetarian-society.org VSS News VSS AGM Sun, 25 March Funding VSS Activities Organizing a Potluck Event Other News Two New
    Message 1 of 1 , Mar 5, 2007

      VSS eNewsletter 7 March 2007




      VSS News

      VSS AGM Sun, 25 March

      Funding VSS Activities

      Organizing a Potluck Event


      Other News

      Two New Outlets

      Christian Holistic Detox Retreat

      Upcoming Events Sponsored by Kampung Senang

      Calcium and Vegans

      Prof Campbell Tells Dr John McDougal’s Story (Instalment 6)


      VSS News

      VSS AGM Sun, 25 March

      Members and supporters are warmly welcome to attend the VSS AGM on Sun, 25 Mar, 3pm-5pm. The venue is Bestway Building , 12 Prince Edward Rd, #06-01 , Podium A. Everyone is welcome, but only members can vote. No memberships will be sold at the door. Light snacks will be served.


      Directions: Bestway Bldg is few minutes walk from Tanjung Pagar MRT. Take Exit D for MAS Bldg and M Hotel. Buses 131, 167, 186, 608, 700, 970, alight at International Plaza, 10 Anson Rd; Buses 10, 70, 75, 97, 100, 107, 130, 162, 196, 400, alight at Apex Tower, 70 Anson Rd.


      Please come along to learn about VSS activities, to ask questions, to voice complaints, and to become more active in convincing others to eat less or no meat.


      Funding VSS Activities

      In our last newsletter, we suggested that people might want to donate to VSS, and two of you wrote in to say that you wanted to. One person is sending a donation, and another is going to become a life member at $300. Also, a restaurant, Roma’s Deli, in Shaw Tower , gave VSS a cheque for money collected from customers.


      If you’re interested in donating, please attend the VSS AGM on Sun, 25 March to learn more about how your money will work hard to help our fellow humans, other animals and the environment.


      Organizing a Potluck Event

      One easy way to try new veg dishes and to meet others who are interested in vegetarian food is by organizing a potluck get together, to which everyone who attends will usually bring a dish that they prepared at home or purchased along the way. The following is an interview, reprinted from the Mar07 IVU (International Vegetarian Union) Online News, with someone who organizes potlucks in Toronto .


      If anyone would like to organize a vegetarian potluck in Singapore (with whatever type of vegetarian food you like), please contact VSS at info@...


      Potlucks are one way for vegetarians to get together, enjoy each other’s company, show off their culinary skills and try new dishes. In the interview below, Garry Choo (garrychoo@...), of the Toronto Vegetarian Association (http://www.veg.ca), shares his experiences organizing potlucks.


      Q: Let’s start with a little biographical info. What is your occupation? Have long have you been veg? Why did you go veg?


      A: I was born and raised in Toronto , ON Canada . I am a manager in the IT department for a Canadian retailer. My primary job function is long-term planning.


      I’ve been veg since 2001. I became veg as a result of reading Fast Food Nation by Eric Schlosser. Three things about the book stuck in my mind:


      1. The wastefulness of raising animals for food. Especially the clearing of the Amazon rainforest to grow soybeans for feed;
      2. That animals were treated in such a cruel manner and also that they did not come from ‘farms’, but from factories; and
      3. The treatment of people in the related slaughter and fast food industries.


      After reading FFN, I began reading other publications to ensure the facts were, well, factual. I read Beyond Beef by Jeremy Rifkin, Diet for a Small Planet by Frances Moore Lappe, Silent Spring by Rachel Carson and many others. These books cemented my resolve to stay vegetarian.


      Q: How long have you been organizing potlucks?


      A: I’ve been organizing monthly potlucks since January 2005. It started as a vegan and raw-food potluck. It is now only a raw-food potluck.


      Q: What led you to start organizing potlucks?


      A: I became vegan and then a raw foodist because of potlucks. I became vegetarian on my own, but I do not think I could have become vegan or raw on my own. There was a great sense of community at the potlucks, and the people in attendance also were a great support network.


      In the fall of 2004, Anson DePezia, a raw foodist in Toronto who organized monthly potlucks in his home, was discontinuing them because he was moving away from the city for several months. I became a raw foodist as a result of Anson’s potlucks.


      With him gone, there was a void that needed to be filled. The first potluck I organized was in January 2005, one month after Anson’s final potluck.


      Q: How do you publicize the potlucks?


      A: Anson provided me with his mailing list of raw-foodists. I used that as a start. I also had a large list of emails of vegetarians that I knew. The potlucks were also promoted on the website, meetup.com, where there were several vegetarian groups (vegetarian, vegan, raw). It was also posted on the Toronto Vegetarian Association’s website, http://www.veg.ca


      At the point when meetup.com started charging for their services, people migrated to Yahoo groups. Several groups were formed including:


      Toronto Vegetarians; http://ca.groups.yahoo.com/group/torontovegetarians

      TVA Singles: http://groups.yahoo.com/group/tva_singles


      I also discovered the Raw Food Toronto group, which I now moderate:



      Also, in the fall of 2006, Sandra McKeown, another Toronto raw foodist, revived the raw food meetup group and that brought some new people to the potlucks.


      Q: How did you begin? What was the first potluck like?


      A: The first potluck was great. There was about 30 or 40 people in attendance. We get from 20-60 people at the potlucks.


      Q: What venues do you use? What are some other possibilities?


      A: I use the party room in my condo building. It is about 3000 square feet in size so it can hold over 100 people. In the summertime, we can expand it into a courtyard off of the party room. I’ve held it in my apartment (once), but it isn’t that big and can only accommodate about 20 people comfortably.


      Q: How do you deal with plates, forks, spoons, etc.?


      A: We have a collection of reuseable plates (donated by the TVA), cups and utensils. People are encouraged to bring their own reuseable plates, cups and utensils. We also request that people bring their own napkins.


      Q: Do people have to sign up ahead of time?


      A: I don’t have people sign up. I don’t find it useful. I only let people know when the event is and they can show up if they like.


      Q: Do you ask people to list the ingredients in their dishes? For example, what if some people don’t take garlic or onion, or some are allergic to a particular food?


      A: Yes, ingredients are always listed in case of allergies and for general information.


      Q: How long do the events usually last?


      A: People start showing up at 6pm, eating starts at 7pm and it’s gone as late as 11pm.


      Q: Other than eating, do you have any scheduled activities, such as ice breakers or screening a video?


      A: In the past, we have had food preparation demonstrations, singers and speakers.


      Q: Do you ever have special themes for the potlucks, such as Asian food?


      A: We had a dessert theme once. It was very popular and the food didn’t last very long from what I remember! Regardless, the ‘theme’ is always raw food now.


      Q: Do you ever have a problem with not having enough food?


      A: Maybe during the dessert themed potluck! There always seems to be just the right amount of food. More often than not, we have food left over at the end of the evening.


      Q: Can someone show up without food and offer to clean-up or do some other task?


      A: I don’t really care if people show up without food. It’s more about learning about raw food. Some people are nervous or do not know what raw food is. I always encourage people to show up, even if they are not bringing anything with them.


      Q: Are there any legal issues involved, such as what happens if someone suffers food poisoning?


      A: I’ve never really thought about it because it’s an informal event. I’ve never known of anyone getting sick from one of the events. I’m not worried about any legal aspects. Vegetarians (Canadians, at least) aren’t very litigious.


      Q: What are some problems that you’ve encountered or might encounter, and how do you try to avoid them?


      A: People that show up with animal-based products because they do not know what raw food is. There is some information on the respective web sites. People list the ingredients so it’s ‘eater beware’.


      Other News

      Two New Outlets

      Here’s information on two new veg outlets


      1. Hokkien Vegetarian, Bukit Batok Blk 640, Stall #01-04, near West Mall

      Open 7 days/week 6am-8.30pm

      Contact: Teresa @ 9857-6905

      Near Bukit Batok MRT

      No egg, no garlic or onion, no msg

      Brown rice: yes


      2. Yi Shou Vegetarian Shop, Blk 293, Yishun St 22, #01-270, S. 760293

      Open every day (except off 2 different days each month)

      Hours: 5.30am-1.30pm, 5.30pm-9.30pm

      Contact: Mr Ang @ 9008.6884, fyewlin@...

      MRT: Yishun, Buses: 800, 804

      Specialties: Crispy Noodle Hor Fun, Laksa

      Egg - yes; onion and garlic – no; msg - a little

      Brown rice: no


      Christian Holistic Detox Retreat

      True Health Ministry, which promotes vegetarianism among Catholics and others, will hold their first Christian Holistic detox retreat from Apr 19, Thu, (7.30pm) to Apr 22, Sun, (6pm), at the Monfort Centre.


      The retreat includes organic detox meals, juicing therapy, colon cleansing, spiritual reconciliation, community prayers, and mind detox. You may obtain registration forms from the Church of Sts Peter and Paul. For info: 6538.9978.


      Upcoming Events Sponsored by Kampung Senang

      Here is information on three veg-related events that are being planned by Kampung Senang’s Holistic Lifestyle Centre.


      1. Holistic Health Fair


      Featuring nature’s health diet, organic weekend mart and alternative health check & therapy.


      Date & Time: 17th Mar, Sat, 11am to 6pm


      Venue: Holistic Lifestyle Centre, Blk 106, Aljunied Crescent , #01-205, Tel -



      2. English Seminar on Courage Despite Cancer:  Step for Self-help


      Speakers: Dr Swee Yong Peng, Dr Lim Kok Kwang & A/Prof Lee Yuan Kun


      Fee: $8/pax (with tea break)


      Date & Time: 31st Mar, Sat, 2-5.30pm


      Venue: Toa Payoh Central CC


      Contact: Henry/Wee Chong @ 6741.9293


      3. 2-Day Family Bonding, Detox & Organic Diet Camp


      Date: 7/8th Apr, Sat/Sun, 9.30am-5pm

      Venue: Holistic Lifestyle Centre, Blk 106, Aljunied Crescent , #01-205, Tel -



      Fee: Non-members $150/pax $250/family (Kampung Senang members enjoy 10% Disc)


      Calcium and Vegans

      Vegans are vegetarians who do not consume any animal-based products. For example, they do not eat eggs or dairy, and some try not to wear use products made of leather. In addition to helping our fellow animals, vegan diets, according to some research, can also benefit human health. At the same time, a recent study suggests that vegans need to be careful about their calcium intake. To read more: http://www.veganhealth.org/articles/bones


      Prof Campbell Tells Dr John McDougal’s Story (Installment 6)

      One of the best-known advocates of whole-food plant-based diets is Dr John McDougall. Here, from pages 329-338 of the book “The China Study”, is Prof Campbell’s telling of how Dr McDougall made the switch: Installment 2). In this installment, we listen in on Dr McDougall’s graduation day conversation with the Chief of Medicine at the U.S. hospital where he did his residency.


      On the day of John’s graduation, he and the Chief of Medicine had a final talk. John remembers the man as being smart, with a good heart, but he was too entrenched in the status quo. The Chief of Medicine sat him down and said, “John, I think you’re a good doctor. I want you to know that. I want you to know that I like your family. That why I’m going to tell you this. I’m concerned that you’re going to starve to death with all your crazy ideas about food. All you’re going to do is collect a bunch of bums and hippies.”

                John paused to gather his thoughts, and then said, “That may be the case. Then I’ll have to starve. I can’t put people on drugs or surgeries that don’t work. Besides, I think you’re wrong. I don’t think it will be bums and hippies. I think it will be successful people who have done well in life. They’ll as themselves, “I’m such a big success, so how come I’m so fat?” With that, John looked at the Chief’s generous belly, and continued, “They’ll ask, ‘If I’m such a big success, why are my health and my future out of control?’ They’ll look at what I have to say, and they’re going to buy it.”

                John finished his formal medical education having had only one hour of nutrition instruction, which involved learning which infant formulas to use. His experience confirms every study that has found nutrition training among physicians to be sorely inadequate.



      Click here for a large list of vegetarian eateries


      Click here to notify us of new places


      Disclaimer: The information provided in this Newsletter is solely for the consideration of the subscribers, and does not constitute an endorsement by VSS.


      Read back issues at: http://www.vegetarian-society.org/newsletter.htm


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