Debunking The 6 Most Common Arguments Against Veganism | Guest Post by David

There are many excuses people use to continue eating meat. For example, they may use the excuse “Vegans don’t get enough protein?” or “Vegans don’t actually live longer”. However, as you know, these arguments are weak and not backed by peer-reviewed research. In this post, we’re going to debunk the 6 most common arguments against veganism.

#1. Vegan Diets Are Dangerous For Children

Why it’s False: Many people think that vegan diets are somehow “dangerous” for children. Some even go as far as to say that vegan parents are bad for not feeding their children meat. However, there’s no evidence to support this myth. In fact, the American Dietetic Association has publicly stated that vegan diets are “nutritionally adequate” for any stage of life (including children and infants). Also, let’s not forget that that approximately 33% of children in the United States are overweight or obese. If more children were vegan, this number would likely be a lot lower.

#2: Vegan Diets Lack Protein

Why it’s False: The average adult needs a minimum of 45 grams of protein per day to stay healthy and maintain their muscle mass. Fortunately, vegan diets easily surpass this number. For example, look at the amount of protein in black beans. A single cup of black beans contains a whopping 39 grams of protein. That’s nearly all your recommended daily intake in a single serving of food. It’s incredibly easy to meet your protein needs on a vegan diet. Even foods like broccoli and bananas contain protein.

#3: Vegan Diets Lack Flavor and Variety

Why it’s False: Some people don’t want to go vegan because they don’t want to give up their favorite foods. They think that vegan diets are boring and lack flavor. But if you’re a vegan, you know that this is far from the truth! Today, vegan restaurants are more abundant than ever. There are also many YouTube channels dedicated to teaching people how to cook vegan meals. It’s a myth that vegan diets lack flavor and variety. To prove it, here’s a list of tasty vegan recipes without oil.

#4: Eating Vegan is Too Expensive

Why it’s False: Despite popular belief, being a vegan isn’t any more expensive than being a meat eater. If anything, it’s cheaper since you’re cutting out meat (which is one of the most expensive food items at grocery stores). The cheapest foods at grocery stores are vegan-friendly: rice, beans, oats, legumes, potatoes, etc. You can easily meet all your caloric and nutritional needs for as little as $5/day. Also, vegan directs indirectly save you money because you won’t spend as much on medical bills over the long run compared to the average meat eater.

#5: It’s Impossible to Build Muscle on a Vegan Diet

Why it’s False: Patrik Baboumian is a German strongman competitor who holds various records in powerlifting. And guess what? His diet is 100% plant-based. This automatically debunks the notion that vegans can’t build muscle. If you consume protein-rich foods like beans, oats, and brown rice, you can build just as much muscle as someone who eats meat. You could even argue that building muscle on a vegan diet is healthier since you’re avoiding dangerous saturated fat and cholesterol.

#6: Vegan Diets Lack Calcium

Why it’s False: The final myth that we’re going to debunk is the myth that vegans don’t get enough calcium. Today’s society has an unhealthy obsession with cow’s milk. They believe that cow’s milk is the best and only source of calcium. But if you look at your options objectively, you’ll see that cow’s milk is a poor source of calcium. For example, a single cup of cow’s milk contains about 300 milligrams of calcium (of which only 30% is absorbed by the body). A single cup of almond milk contains 50% more calcium and has the added benefit of containing no saturated fat or cholesterol. Obviously, if you want to be healthy, vegan calcium sources are the way to go.


As you can see, all the major arguments against veganism aren’t backed any real evidence. There are thousands of peer-reviewed, evidence-based research papers showing how vegan diets are healthier than animal-based diets in every way. The next time a meat eater presents one of these arguments to you, politely refer them to this article.

Happy One Year Anniversary to 540WMain Community Learning Academy

Last Friday was the one year anniversary of opening 540WMain Community Learning Academy

It has been a wonderful year and I have worked diligently, day and night over the past year to build 540WMain into the thriving learning academy that it is today.

But I certainly cannot take all the credit.  It was each and every one of you dear readers and supporters who has helped 540WMain grow along the way. I thank you from the bottom of my heart.  Having a space to house theglutenfreechefblog Omnimedia, LLC as well as classes and special events is really a dream come true.

Here’s to many more successful years to come! If you live in the Rochester, NY area I invite you to come celebrate with us at our One Year Anniversary Mingle, Saturday, August 26th 2017 from 6PM – 8PM at 540WMain! There will be music, food, wellness vendors, door prizes and more!

Leave a comment below & tell us what you love about 540WMain or visit us on social media hashtag #540anniversary


I Have A Disability | Living with Fibromyalgia

I have a disability

There I said it! Despite the fact that I’ve lived with fibromyalgia for nearly 8 years writing let alone saying the words above is no easy feat. Our society has placed such negative stigma and stereotype around the word that owning this statement has taken me years. Nearly a decade to be exact.

The word disability itself is a source or much debate, spectacle, confusion and frustration. Inwardly and outwardly expressing the fact when the very definition of the word is a source of elusion is just half the battle. The fact that I and so many others  look “normal” on the outside makes it an even harder pill to swallow and even harder to truly and fully accept.

By definition a disability is:

is an impairment that may be cognitive, developmental, intellectual, mental, physical, sensory, or some combination of these, and that substantially affects a person’s life activities. A disability may be present from birth or occur during a person’s lifetime.

The World Health Organization defines it as:

An umbrella term, covering impairments, activity limitations, and participation restrictions. An impairment is a problem in body function or structure; an activity limitation is a difficulty encountered by an individual in executing a task or action; while a participation restriction is a problem experienced by an individual in involvement in life situations. Disability is thus not just a health problem. It is a complex phenomenon, reflecting the interaction between features of a person’s body and features of the society in which he or she lives”

The very definition is complex. So one can only imagine what those of us living with a disability go through mentally, physically, and emotionally when trying to come to terms with the fact that chronic pain, lupus, fibromyalgia (and many others) are not just illnesses or diseases but a true disability. Adding to the complexity is the fact that my impairment of fibromyalgia ebbs and flows. I’m impaired but not quite enough to meet the government standard. My impairment is invisible and on the outside on many days I look completely normal. This fact is the most frustrating part.  Those of us with invisible impairments are often unable to get the understanding and compassion that the world or society gives to those with physical- visibleimpairments.

I am by no means saying that I wish I had a visible disability. I am grateful and thankful for what I am able to do and fully understand that fibromyalgia is not by any means the worst illness or disability to have. I can do many many things that many other people are not able to do. But I also cannot do many things. By societal standards my days are not normal. The ebb and flow of my disability make it such that maintaining a standard or normal job isn’t an option. The vacillating nature of my disability means that on many days I can go without a problem and then suddenly for due to no fault of my own I can be rendered bedridden for days or weeks. Every single aspect of my entire being from my thoughts, actions, steps, are impacted all the time by my disability. It consumes my entire existence and there aren’t enough words to describe what life is like. Sometimes I need a cane to walk, sometimes I can run; and then I can’t.

Everyone and anyone living with any disability be it physical, mental, or emotional understands that there is no one way to make everyone fully understand. The stigma in our society is thick and equally frustrating whether someone’s disability can be seen or not.

Personal ownership and understanding is just as complicated for the survivor as it is for the family, friends, and world. But the first step to understanding is acceptance and awareness. Whether you can see my pain or not or feel the effects accepting that no matter what you see me do I am a person living with a disability. People first language helps. Reading helps. Listening helps. Accepting helps.

It’s taken me eight years to accept, admit, and own that I have a disability. This is not bad or good nor is it an excuse. It just is and I am grateful to finally finally be able to say these words to myself and to the world.

Photo credit: Disability Arts Online

There’s No Such Thing As An Overnight Success | REPOST

There’s no such thing as an overnight success.

There I said it. But to my chagrin, I hear this “expression” (if you can call it that) much too often. I cringe every time I hear it. It burns my corneas every time I read it. “Over night success” I shudder as I type it out. I kid. (not really) And for good reason. It burns me when hardworking folks are not given their due credit. I’m bothered when writers, media, journalists, whoever; unknowingly discredit the countless hours , the blood, sweat, tears, skin, brain power, money, and hard work that goes into becoming successful, honing a craft, and perfecting a talent. This back handed compliment is nothing close to positive. At best it’s nearly impossible since anyone who creates anything for a living understands that the road to success is more like an unending journey. A winding, twisting, gut wrenching, expensive, frustrating, maddening, and time consuming path. One that never seems to have a beginning and rarely has an end; since the end spells the exact opposite of success. At it’s worst, the phrase is insulting, banal, reductive, and implies that “fate” is required to become successful. This notion is utterly absurd. Success is very measurable, observable, and able to be calculated. There’s only one pathway to success; hard work.

There’s only one pathway to success; hard work.

This road is lonely. Yes. While everyone else is living it up, gadding about, partying, relaxing, relishing in the sun; those who chase success are busy plotting, planning, reading, working, and grinding. Daytime, nighttime, morning time, midnight, dusk, dawn, anytime and every time. Those that want to be successful make time to be successful. Often when everyone else is asleep. They work harder. They plan smarter. They read more. Rehearse more. Learn more. Do more. And this is nothing against those that sleep. My point is that success never happens overnight. Success like love, takes time to cultivate. Success is something that is curated. It is honed and caressed. It is cared for, stoked, stroked, and polished. Success happens over time. Oftentimes those that succeed in finding success don’t even realize that they have it. Sure, success can be catapulted. Sometimes it has a defining moment. A pivotal action or chain of reactions that catapult it into the consciousness of the masses.

Some call this a stepping stone. Some call this a big break. The one action that takes all the long nights, the grueling days, and countless hours and shoots them into the public conscious like a batter hitting a baseball. Success has many names:

  • Micheal
  • Whitney
  • Mariah
  • Celine
  • Mark
  • Mohammed
  • Steve
  • Bill
  • Obama

Do you see where I am going? Everyone has a start. Before there was Michael and Obama there was Michael and Obama. Ordinary people that had extraordinary passion and a quest to do extraordinary things. They had more drive, more desire, more passion, and more work ethic than the average. While their peers were sleeping they were busy working. Not dreaming. Not resting. Not relaxing. Working. Every hour of every day they worked. No one else get’s to take credit for this. Not a manager. Not an investor. Not a coach. Not a producer. Not the stepping stone. Not a friend. Not fate. Not time. THEY are solely responsible for their success because they worked hard and believed when no one else would. They knew even before they knew that one day it would all pay off.

It’s true that they may have had a big break. Or a defining moment that put them or their idea into the consciousness of the public. Some made their own moment. Some never get a moment at all. They just quietly and defiantly worked. Every night. Every day. When no one else would. Success doesn’t happen overnight.

Calvin Eaton is a holistic health, wellness & gluten free foodie, chef, publisher and writer. He’s also the editor in chief of The Rochester Gluten Free Guide magazine & the gluten free chef which he launched in 2012 after years of living with the effects of fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue and celiac disease – conditions that are exacerbated by the presence of wheat, gluten, and dairy. His goal has always been to make gluten free living accessible to everyone. He along with the not-for-profit Prosper Rochester offers a variety of workshops, classes, networking events, and private lessons to those who are living gluten free.

calvin with hat



Seeing The Beauty Despite Your Pain | Living with Fibromyalgia


So, I spilled my negative guts, vented, purged, and said my peace in last weeks (I Hate Fibromyalgia post) and if I remember correctly we left off with the question:

How do you see the beauty despite the pain?

The answer(s) are simple:

  1. Pause for Reflection

    When life feels insurmountable and you feel like giving up. Stop. Sit. Breathe. . You clear your mind and listen. You think about something good. You reset and try to clear out the negative thoughts.

  2. Vent

    Letting it out is ok. Sometimes the only way to let go and move forward with seeing the beauty (and the positive) is to purge and find a ear willing to listen to all the reasons the chronic life sucks. Allow yourself a space to purge and don’t feel guilty about it.

  3. Rest

    This is hard to do. Life is full of so many next items it can be difficult to just stop, drop and rest for one, two or three days. This doesn’t even speak to the disrupted sleep that is a direct symptom of most chronic illnesses.  Let your body do what it needs to do and I promise your mind will catch up.

  4. Prioritize & Chunk

    Oftentimes, chronic illness causes anxiety. Anxiety makes it feel like the world is closing in and everything is essential. Everything is not essential. The best way to see the beauty in life (and on your to do list) is to write down what is most essential and then break essentials down to their most basic components. Something as simple as laundry might need to wait until tomorrow depending on what comes up and even this task might take all day. Let it take all week and all day

  5. Be Flexible

    Everything will work out. Our fears usually never materialize and our outlook is 90% how we see the world or the circumstance. Yes, fibro or any invisible chronic illness makes everything unduly complicated, complex, and arduous. Being flexible enough to go with the flow, release control, and know that no matter what everything will be ok (if we are present or not) goes a long way.

Trust me  performing even these five exercises is easier said than done. However, everytime I find myself spinning out of control, regressing into a dark place of depression, and feeling ready to give up on everything single thing. I realize that I’ve forgotten atleast three of these golden rules.

Everyday we exist is a day that we have conquered the beast. This alone means that we are thriving. We are successful. And we have done tons more than we ever give ourselves credit for. Stopping to see the individual trees amidst the forest of chronic life is the hardest task. Reaching for the light at the end of the tunnel forgetting that we are holding the lamp and the light bulb all along.

Stopping to see the individual trees amidst the forest of chronic life is the hardest thing to do,

We’ve got this. We have conquered the beast. Our lives are already beautiful and it’s up to each one of us to see that beauty every single moment of every single day. It ain’t always easy, but it is possible.

INvisible Beauty In Pain Artist Spotlight | Ron Harrison

The INvisible Beauty In Pain campaign’s tenth artist spotlight is Ron Harrison

The INvisible Beauty In Pain campaign’s tenth artist spotlight is Ron Harrison

Ron Harrison lives in Chicopee, Massachusetts. and has been painting fantasy and historical medieval figures for over 15 years as part of the Wings and Wheels model club. He paints with a combination of acrylics, artists oils and printers inks ( metal work ) and a combination of real and artificial groundwork. He is inspired by movies and books for his work. The figure donated to the INvisible gallery is by Romeo Models. Anglo-Saxon Warrior 7th century A.D.
For the rest of KNOWvember, we will feature the biographies and the meaning behind the works of art created by and donated to the INvisible Beauty in Pain Gallery by each of the thirteen artists that submitted work for this campaign.

All works are available to be seen in person at 540WMain and are a celebration of The U.S Pain Foundation’s KNOWvember campaign which you can learn more about by clicking here.