Plant-Powered People Podcast

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This podcast has
76 episodes
Date created
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54 min.
Release period
8 days


Life is always easier and more exciting when you have friends to share in your journey, and the path to plant-based living is no exception! On the Plant-Powered People Podcast, you’ll hear from folks who’ve embraced plant-based living while they share their experiences overcoming obstacles in the most graceful (and sometimes not-so-graceful) ways. Join hosts Michelle Cehn (founder of World of Vegan) and Toni Okamoto (founder of Plant Based on a Budget) every other week as they tackle challenges like being the only vegan in the family, what it’s like to be plant-based while working at a non-veg restaurant job, and more!

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74. Being Plant-Based When Everything is Working Against You
What do you do when you need help from a dietician but you’re on a tight budget? Anna Rios is a registered dietician at the FQHC, and she helps low-income Americans to make accessible healthy diet changes that help reverse hypertension, type 2 diabetes, and more! She’s on the show today to discuss the challenges associated with accessing a healthy plant-based lifestyle, and how to make affordable changes.   Show Notes: How Anna provides professional nutrition counseling to farm workers, factory workers, and more who have health issues like high blood pressure, diabetes, and more Busting the myth “it’s too expensive to eat vegan” The importance of empowering people with the knowledge, resources, and access to eat healthier and reclaim their lives How Anna’s goals shifted from wanting to be a doctor to becoming a registered dietician Navigating becoming plant-based in a family that is set in their ways & dietary habits How plant-based living helped lower blood pressure, help energy levels, and helps improve mood disorders What is the FQHC and how does it help the low income population? How Anna makes dietary changes seem attainable and less scary using SMART goals How to find and access FQHC clinics with or without insurance in almost every US county How to talk to patients who are uneasy about seeking healthcare Why restrictive and unrealistic diets don’t work long term How Anna’s patient regulated his cholesterol levels and reversed type 2 diabetes The connection between nutrition and mental health The importance of Intuitive & mindful eating The connection between food & culture, family, wellbeing, & happiness How to participate in cultural dishes in a healthier way Thank you to our sponsor’s Maxine’s Heavenly (use discount code PLANTS25) and Karviva Beverages   Resources: Anna’s Instagram Anna’s Tik Tok Anna’s Pinterest Anna’s Website: Free plant-based meal plans on
73. Vegan Rabbi on Being a Jewish Vegan
How much does veganism have to do with Jewish values? Turns out, a lot! Rabbi Shmuly is one of the most influential Rabbis in the USA, and he is here to talk about his plant-based journey, the intersection between vegan and Jewish values, and how to stay plant-based at traditional Jewish meals.   Show Notes: How Rabbi Shmuly went from no interest in veganism at all to living the plant-based lifestyle Raising plant-based children How Rabbi Shmuly embraces transformation and compassion Why a plant-based lifestyle complements Jewish values The difficulty of being in jewish spaces that don’t understand/embrace vegan sensibilities How religion can challenge us to not accept the world as it is, but instead to help us envision and work towards what it should be How religion can help people to support each other and build community How the current food system & factory farming conflicts with Jewish morals Why a Kosher label doesn’t always mean the food was produced ethically How people are becoming more aware of the suffering of other beings, creating new pathways for change Jewish ethos & rejecting dogma How the systems of oppression and technologies of destruction towards people compare to the mass slaughter of animals Being an advocate for those who aren’t seen or heard Tips for using kosher labels to figure out what’s vegan How to politely navigate Jewish holidays and traditions as the only vegan in the room Feel empowered as a vegan at a traditional meal by hosting the event Tips for creating your own vegan traditions Vegan ingredient replacements for traditional Jewish dishes Vegan Jewish recipe suggestions The importance of deepening our inner world in order to create change in the outer world Thank you to our sponsors Maxine’s Heavenly & Natreve    Resources: Rabbi Shmuly’s books Vegan Passover guide Vegan Hanukkah guide Vegan challah bread recipe Vegan noodle kugel recipe Carrot lox recipe Vegan latke recipe  Vegan matzo ball soup recipe
72. Integrating Plant-based Living into Cultural Traditions
How can you veganize your culture’s dishes that traditionally contain many animal products? It can sometimes be a challenge to maintain the flavors, but there is a way! Alexa Soto specializes in bringing her Mexican culture to the world through plant-based food, and she’s here to give us her best tips on cooking plant-based versions of our culture’s favorite dishes!   Show Notes: Mexican culture & mexican food How to enjoy & love your culture without sacrificing your plant-based lifestyle Dealing with pushback from family about being vegan Vegan swaps for items that are culturally significant Veganizing Mexican, American, and Jewish dishes How to tie your cultural identity into your plant-based food Tips for those trying to veganize their culture’s family recipes Plant-based, wholefood swaps for animal products in our culture’s dishes Learning to enjoy the flavors & textures of vegan ingredients Resources for vegan cultural dishes Tips for ordering a vegan dish at a traditional cultural restaurant Thank you to our sponsors, Maxine’s Heavenly and Natreve   Resources: Alexa’s Instagram Alexa’s Tik Tok The Korean Vegan
71. What's Wrong With Eating Animals?
How do you discuss the uncomfortable reality of why it’s bad to eat animals without shaming anyone or causing hard feelings? Gene Baur, author of two books, founder of Farm Sanctuary, and expert on the reality of the animal product industry is on the podcast today to help us navigate the conversation!   Show Notes: About Gene’s books & the Farm Sanctuary How to effectively answer the question “What’s wrong with eating animals?” The harm that factory farming causes to animals & the environment How & why Farm Sanctuary started How to make the conversation about slaughterhouses less uncomfortable What it was like being vegan in the 80s when it was more rare Why being making plant-based choices isn’t about being perfect The power of making the conscious choice to avoid unnecessary harm The extremely unsanitary nature of factory farms & the risks they carry The community & environmental impact of the mass production of animal products Why cows being raised for dairy might just be worse than being raised for beef The sad reality of free-range/cage-free/free-roaming egg production Thank you to our sponsors Maxine’s Heavenly & Natreve   Resources: Farm Sanctuary Website Gene’s books The Friendly Vegan cookbook Plant-Based on a Budget World of Vegan Find a farm sanctuary near you!
70. The Power of Meatless Mondays
How do we shift the outlook on the plant-based lifestyle from extreme to mainstream? Kristie Middleton, vice president of business development at Rebellyous Foods is here on the show to tell us how she’s been doing exactly that for the last 20 years! She's the author of MeatLess--Transform the Way You Eat and Live--One Meal at a Time. During her time at Rebellyous, she has launched the successful rebrand of Seattle Food Tech to Rebellyous Foods and commercialized three SKUs for retail and four for foodservice. She and her team have now launched our products from coast to coast. Her work has been covered by national media, including The Los Angeles Times, Civil Eats, San Francisco Chronicle, and Politico. She’s a co-founder and board member of East Bay Animal Political Action Committee and serves as an advisor to Clear Current Capital. She holds a certificate in plant-based nutrition from T. Colin Campbell Center for Nutrition Studies.   Show notes: The impact that people & their communities can have when they commit to meatless Mondays The process of implementing meatless Mondays across school food programs Kristie’s work at Rebellyous foods & animal welfare initiatives How vegan food samples on the street make a huge impact What it’s like to work in the vegan food industry The importance of shifting away from the commonly dogmatic way of veganism Meatless Mondays’ WWI roots Kristie’s work at the humane society The popularization of meatless Mondays in school districts How to have a more pragmatic approach to veganism & seeing people as allies How bringing a vegan dish to an event can trigger a positive impact The power of not demanding perfection from those around us Meatless Mondays as a way to explore foods from around the world How meatless Mondays have impacted students & staff to make healthy food choices Advice for people considering going plant-based The positive health impacts of a plant-based lifestyle Giving yourself permission to be flexible in your food choices Advice for proposing meatless Mondays to your community centers The obstacles of large-scale food service programs & being a positive resource/problem solver Tips and tricks the help meatless Mondays stick Practical tips for making vegan food choices simpler The impact of sharing vegan dishes & recipes Words of encouragement for vegan activists when encountering negative pushback Tips to encourage a vegan lifestyle & being active within your communities  Thank you to our sponsors Caraway Home & Maxine’s Heavenly  Resources: Rebellyous Foods MeatLess by Kristie Middleton Contact Kristie at ​​
69. Stories From a Vegan Jazz Musician & Mobster
A pacifist vegan with ties to the mob who fight-fixes, but also would never hurt a fly? Sounds like one big oxymoron, but in fact all of this (and more) is embodied in jazz musician and longtime animal advocate Charles Farrell. Charles shares how he would often take boxing and musician friends and clients to Buddha’s Delight, a vegan restaurant in Boston’s Chinatown, to share animal-free cooking with unlikely customers who were always won over by the delicious food. He mentions how he moved tarantulas safely out of his path while walking barefoot through the rainforests of Puerto Rico, and how he often came up against the classic “You don’t eat meat?” incredulous question from hard-boiled Boston and New York mobsters. Enjoy this fascinating episode!   Visit the Plant-Powered People Podcast website and show notes at: Find vegan recipes, guides, and resources at Plant-Based on a Budget and World of Vegan.   Show notes: Navigating being the only vegan/vegetarian among family & friends in Boston Fluctuating between being a working musician & being a gangster Getting out of dangerous situations Ethics & decision making Exercising empathy & connection with others Natural empathy vs. learned empathy Making conscious decisions to avoid harm towards all beings Tips for maintaining kindness & compassion within different social circles Turning bad habits into good ones The plant-based food industry & how it is promoted Dealing with a population who thought the vegan lifestyle is not healthy Charles’ advice for new vegans & those considering the vegan lifestyle Thank you to our sponsors, Better Than Bouillon & Maxine's Heavenly!    Resources: The Friendly Vegan Cookbook (Low)life: A Memoir of Jazz, Fight-Fixing, and The Mob by Charles Farrell
68. Heart Disease is a "Paper Tiger" — Dr. Esselstyn Shares How to Become Virtually Heart Attack Proof with Plants!
How did heart disease become the leading cause of death in the west, and how can we prevent and reverse it? Dr. Esselstyn is here to share how we all have the power to prevent and reverse decades of abuse to our endothelial cells from eating the Standard American Diet by eating plant-based foods. Visit the Plant-Powered People Podcast website and show notes at: Find vegan recipes, guides, and resources at Plant-Based on a Budget and World of Vegan.   Show Notes: Dr. Esselstyn’s story & accomplishments Why the prevalence of disease in the USA is higher compared to other countries What heart disease is & how it is caused How early the foundations for heart disease begin The importance of nitric oxide and the endothelium for cardiovascular health The future of heart disease treatment The missing pieces in typical heart disease treatment The foods that cause heart disease & why animal products are bad Whole, plant-based foods that help reverse heart disease Why heart disease is more prevalent as we age How balsamic and rice vinegar with greens can help reverse heart disease The importance of chewing greens vs. using them in smoothies  How fluoride & antacids can contribute to the onset of heart disease Why the Standard American Diet injures our heart & bodies How heart attacks are caused How an 87 year old reversed his heart disease with plant-based food Advice for those recently diagnosed with heart disease Sample plant-based menu for preventing & reversing heart disease Thank you to our sponsor, Caraway Home    Resources: Book: Prevent and Reverse Heart Disease by Dr. Esselstyn Dr. Esselstyn’s Seminar Dr. Esselstyn’s Website The Plantrician Project The American College of Lifestyle Medicine
67. Plant-Based Athletes Are Winning The Game
Vegan athletes are competing at the highest level in virtually every sport — and winning! Robert Cheeke, longtime vegan bodybuilder and NYT bestselling co-author of The Plant-Based Athlete, shares why plant-based athletes have a competitive advantage. He also shares his experiences thriving as an athlete long-term on a plant-based diet. Visit the Plant-Powered People Podcast website and show notes at: Find vegan recipes, guides, and resources at Plant-Based on a Budget and World of Vegan. SHOW NOTES: Growing up in an animal farming environment Pursuing a plant-based lifestyle despite concerns of coaches, friends, & family Bodybuilding on a vegan diet & putting on 100lbs of healthy weight Some famous professional athletes who are plant-based Inflammation & how food choices impact recovery for athletes The ANDY score and ranking foods on nutrient density Why an athlete can look healthy on the outside but be sick on the inside Athletes who continue competing at a high level later in life thanks to a vegan diet Why some animal protein powders can be dangerous & the benefits of vegan protein Why you don’t need protein powder to build muscle Energy levels & getting enough calories on a plant-based diet Top supplements for vegans that are actually helpful The importance of community Resources: Book: The Plant-Based Athlete by Robert Cheeke and Matt Frazier Robert Cheeke’s website
66. Italian New Yorker Goes Vegan & Opens Plant-Based Italian Restaurant
Meat-loving Italian New Yorker, Danny Costanzo, saves his own life by going plant-based. And then... guess what he did? He went on to open a 100% Vegan Italian Restaurant — Plant-Based Mafia.  Growing up in an Italian family in New York, Danny Costanzo grew up enjoying delicious comforting food and the way it brought his loved ones together. His dietary habits have shifted many times throughout his life — from eating everything, to becoming a raw foodist, to a diet which led him to 3 clogged arteries, and to where he is now with a vegan diet. When you think of Italian food, you probably think of cheesy pizza, parmesan on everything, and deliciously creamy cannolis. Vegan may be the last word that comes to mind. That's why we're so excited to have him on the show to talk about how he got started on a plant-based lifestyle and how it led to the creation of his wildly successful Italian restaurant. Danny shares what led him to change his diet a number of times, and how food has had such a huge impact on his cardiovascular health. You'll definitely want to listen to this if you want to know how a vegan diet can help improve and even reverse heart disease! He also shares his experience of growing up in an Italian family where food is central to bringing everyone together, and how he carried that welcoming philosophy into his restaurant. By the end of the episode, you’ll want to find your way to Florida to eat at Plant-Based Mafia sometime soon! Happy listening, ♡ Michelle & Toni SHOW NOTES Growing up in a food-centric Italian family with rich & decadent recipes Creating delicious vegan versions of popular Italian dishes and making vegan Italian food cool!  How a long recovery from a leg injury led to adopting a vegan diet Dealing with grief and stress & how it can affect the body The importance of listening to your body’s symptoms and cues How a plant-based diet can help reverse clogged arteries and help heart disease Bringing people together and creating community around plant-based food Real Italian culture vs. Italian portrayal in films The history of the name “Plant-Based Mafia & reclaiming the true meaning of the word “mafia” The importance of being your own health advocate Getting through a tough time by dedicating yourself to a cause The exciting next steps for the vegan Italian restaurant Plant-Based Mafia Thank you to our sponsor, Caraway Home  VEGAN ITALIAN FOOD RECIPES & GUIDES 30+ Awesome Vegan Pasta Recipes Vegan Pizza Recipes Homemade Italian Pasta Sauce Spicy Tomato Basil Pasta Caprese Salad Vegan Cheese Guide RELATED EPISODES Ep. 65: Mastering Diabetes Ep. 53: 100 Pound Weight Loss Journey to Conquering Disease RESOURCES Dr. Esselstyn - Prevent & Reverse Heart Disease Dr. Greger - The End of Heart Disease - Dr. Joe Fuhrman The Plant-Based Athlete - Matt Frazier & Robert Cheeke The Game Changers What the Health Guide to Vegan Nutrition
65. Prevent & Reverse Diabetes: How to Reverse Insulin Resistance Permanently in Type 1, 1.5, 2, Prediabetes, and Gestational Diabetes With Dr. Cyrus Khambatta
Do you live with diabetes, or know someone who does? This episode is a must-listen. NYT bestselling author Dr. Cyrus Khambatta shares his research on how a whole foods, plant-based diet can help prevent and reverse Type 1 diabetes, Type 1.5 diabetes, Type 2 diabetes, prediabetes, and gestational diabetes.  Reversing or controlling diabetes through a plant-based diet Why restricting carbs isn’t enough to effectively manage blood glucose How eating lots of fruits & veggies can decrease insulin requirements The differences between the 6 types of diabetes How cognitive decline is related to insulin resistance Saturated fats & the creation of type 2 diabetes  Our organs & how they digest food Insulin and how it works in the body Foods to include and stay away from to control or reverse diabetes The side effects of diabetes & how they can be prevented with plant-based foods Defining your WHY to stay inspired to keep lifestyle changes The importance of community that is aligned with your goals Chronic disease reversal as a emerging branch of medicine  Resources: Mastering Diabetes by Cyrus Khambatta
64. Parenting Plant-Based Kids With Vegan Mama Marisa Miller Wolfson
Do you have kids? Are you thinking of raising vegan kids in the future? If so, this episode is for you! From school lunches to kids’ birthday parties and every meal and snack in between, having plant-based kids can be a challenge. That’s why we had the Vegucated documentary  creator, The Vegucated Family Table co-author, and plant-based mom, Marisa Miller Wolfson on the show! We talk all about how to navigate the challenges and wins of having kids with a vegan lifestyle. You’ll get lots of advice on how you can make the transition to a plant-based lifestyle easier for your family, and tips to keep it going long-term! We also talk about the power of vegan documentaries and what got us onto the vegan path. Enjoy! ♡ Michelle & Toni Show Notes: Thank you to our sponsors, Caraway Home and Gaiam. Special discount code for our listeners: use the code PLANTPOWEREDKITCHEN for 10% off of your Caraway pans. Vegan lifestyle as a parent Growing up eating meat and transitioning into plant-based The power of documentaries on the vegan path Navigating the non-vegan food systems at schools Helping your kids to understand why their food is different How to explain veganism and where meat comes from to children Talking about compassion and respect for other peoples’ choices with your kids Advice for parents who want to transition their family’s lifestyle Planning for a plant-based halloween  How to navigate when your kid is invited to a non-vegan party How being involved in your kids social life can be helpful Being part of a community that is making the world a better place Links: Ep. #57 Plant-Based Pediatrician On Raising Vegan Children Ep. #6 When Your Loved One Is An Omnivore Ep. #34 Eating Vegan in Social Situations Ep #19 Going Vegan When Your Family Isn’t On Board The vegucated family table
63. Rural Vegan Living Challenges & How to Overcome Them
Jami Gerke is a midwesterner who is used to buying a whole cow and splitting it with her whole family. When she decided to transition to vegan living (which is still a work in progress), her family had to make a huge adjustment to support her decision. Our Sponsors: Better Than Bouillon, a Life-changer for Soup Lovers Veestro, an Exciting Vegan Meal Delivery Service Living plant based in a community without many vegan options The challenge of being vegan somewhere where it’s politicized Growing up in midwest USA farm culture & switching to plant-based Reversing pre-diabetes with diet changes Joint health & eating plant-based Leading by example to address judgments & challenges about the vegan lifestyle Navigating the restaurants and grocery stores that aren’t vegan friendly How keeping it simple helps the transition to plant-based living Switching to a plant-based lifestyle with kids Tips to clear out your home from non vegan ingredients without wasting Advice on choosing healthy, whole vegan food over pre-packed & processed Using willpower & preparing for non-vegan cravings  Armoring yourself with knowledge to stand up for your food choices How to practice strong & respectful communication about plant-based decisions

Podcast Reviews

Read Plant-Powered People Podcast podcast reviews

4.9 out of 5
247 reviews
hania12 2022/06/24
My new friends!
Michelle and Toni are the only good thing about my commute! I actually look forward to my drive knowing I get to listen to a new episode. I found this...
Bennyb12345 2022/05/15
Great content with cool guests!
I’m very happy I found this show. They bring in some really interesting and unique guests and ask great questions. Vegans come from all backgrounds, a...
Yoli888 2022/04/15
Sharing this far and wide!
Wow! Your Mastering Diabetes episode blew my mind. I know so many people who are pre-diabetic, or have it full-blown, who could benefit from this inf...
other emily g 2022/04/26
Okay, but VERY little food content
This podcast is just okay - the hosts are very natural and pleasant. But it ends up being just like every other wellness podcast instead of actually h...
bmorevegan 2022/03/19
New vegan
I absolutely love this podcast. I’ve been vegan for three weeks now and Michelle and Toni have helped me navigate this new chapter of my life. They ar...
scfee18 2022/01/20
Love a give away ♥️
I love my pressure cooker for rice and beans. Thanks for inspiring me to use it more. Also love Better Than Bullion, Costco has a big jar for under $1...
Pinupred 2022/01/16
My favorite podcast!
Thank you to Michelle and Toni for this podcast. I’m now 30 been vegetarian since I was 16, and now vegan for 3 years. This podcast has helped me so m...
Amberlee L 2022/01/16
Favorite podcast
I’ve been listening on Spotify for awhile now but wanted to leave a review over here. Thank you ladies so much for supporting so many of us on our pla...
audliz 2022/01/15
Fun and Informative
Practical, helpful information presented in an upbeat, pleasant manner. I really appreciate the variety of content that is covered! Highly recommend!!...
KimC0la 2022/01/15
Love this podcast!
I’m always on the lookout for great plant-based podcasts and recently, a few months ago, came across the Plant-Powered People Podcast. I appreciate To...


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