Forks Over Knives Gave Me Something to Think About

Excited that it was finally available on Netflix, last night I watched the documentary, Forks Over Knives.  I’ve been a fan of the Engine 2 Diet and The China Study for a while, but I didn’t realize how closely related this movie is to both of them. To put it simply, the movie is not for everyone.  But, in my opinion, IT SHOULD BE!  I’m sure some of you won’t like what I have to say.  But, keep in mind, our blog has 5 different writers, and not all of us share the same opinions.  So, you’ll still see some meat recipes on our site!  That is, unless they change their minds, too!  :)

The movie is about 1.5 hours long, but it took me and my husband much longer to watch, since we stopped and started it many times to talk about certain things.  At one point, I was on the verge of tears.  And, one time when we had paused it, I went into the kitchen to pour out my brand new 1/2 gallon of organic cow’s milk.  You know how sometimes, you just have those moments of clarity?  That’s what it felt like for me.  I just couldn’t have it in my house anymore.  If you look below, you’ll see that we’ve clearly been confused about which milk to drink for a while.  I went through the pantry and fridge and pulled out all of the milk I had in the house and Lance and I started to ask ourselves….what do we want out of milk?  Seems like the doctors and commercials and some government agencies (they do protect us, right?) tell us it’s calcium.  I remember my son’s doctor telling my pre-teen son to be sure to drink TONS of milk during his teenage years.  Why?  I guess so that his bones would be strong and not crumble away.  I suppose it’s because cow’s milk is “natural”.  Hmm.  Below is a picture of my younger son with the different milks we had in our house. And, we usually also have goat milk added to the mix!

Who wouldn’t want to to empower yourself with as much knowledge as possible to keep him safe and healthy?  :)  Since we had all of the milk out, Lance (husby) and I excitedly started calling out how the different vitamins and minerals each had and were comparing them to each other.  We wanted to try to answer the question – why, if we think cow milk is pretty gross, has pus in it, and just seems weird in general to feed a human milk from an animal, why?  Why are we still feeding it to our kids, when we won’t drink it ourselves anymore.  Quick question – if the government and your doctor said that human milk was better for us than cow’s milk, would you go stock your shelves with it, or would that gross you out a little bit?  It’s just something to think about.  Do you think that doctors have all of the answers?  Do you think doctors have differing opinions?  They do.

Since we were calling out the different nutrients in the milks we had in the house, I thought I’d make a chart so you can see what we saw.  Draw your own conclusions – I’m just telling you about our night.  :)  I put what I considered category “winners” in RED.

*all measurements are 1 cup Central Market Organic Almond Milk – Organic Pacific Natural Foods Hemp Milk –Original Pacific Natural Foods Hemp Milk – Vanilla So Delicious Coconut Milk – Unsweetened Horizon Organic Lowfat Milk – 1%
Calories 60 140 160 50 100
Fat 3.5g 5g 5g 5g 2.5g
Cholesterol 0 0 0 0 10mg
Sugar 7g 14g 16g 0g 12g
Potassium 180mg 170mg 170mg 65mg Not given
Calcium 10% 50% 50% 10% 30%
Iron 2% 6% 6% 10% 0%
Phosphorus 8% 30% 30% Not given 25%
Vitamin A 4% 10% 10% 10% 10%
Vitamin B12 Not given Not given Not given 50% Not given
Vitamin C 0% 0% 0% 0% 2%
Vitamin D 10% 30% 30% 30% 25%
Protein 1g 3g 3g 1g 8g


Some things that were surprising to me:

I always thought that hemp milk had quite a lot of sugar in it.  I found it interesting that cow’s milk is not far behind it.  And, cow’s milk was definitely the winner in the protein category, but I have to wonder how many people are drinking milk for the animal protein in it?  And if so, why is animal protein better than any other plant based protein or calcium for that matter?  I’m curious to know.

I don’t want to ruin the movie for anyone and I don’t want to go on and on about why I loved it so much.  But, I will tell you this.  I dumped my cow’s milk and don’t plan to give it to my kids anymore.  And, I have been on the verge of a 100% plant based diet for a while now, and I can safely say that I am finished with meat now.  (I will need to transition my VERY pick y 5 year old because he lives on turkey sandwiches and I don’t want him to get sick!  Oh and if you have any ideas or suggestions for him, PLEASE send my way!)  I wouldn’t drink milk from my nursing dog (or my nursing neighbor), and I wouldn’t eat my dogs!  So why would I eat a cow?  Or a pig?  Is there REALLY a difference between which animals are appropriate to eat?

Please don’t take it from me – I am not an extremist about anything and I will never judge anyone who doesn’t see things the way I do.  And I can’t make a promise with all of my heart that I will never have a filet mignon again! But, if you are reading this and curious about it at all – PLEASE watch Forks Over Knives and also Crazy, Sexy Cancer. I strongly believe that these two documentaries will at least empower you with knowledge that you didn’t have before – and I know that they will give you something to think about.

Who else wants to go on this journey with me?   Please comment, whether you agree with me or not – I would love to know other people’s views!

Have a wonderful Labor Day weekend everyone!  I’m off to find some plant based recipes I can serve on Labor Day!  To start, it looks like there may some here.  :)

Health and hugs…


There is no money in healthy people or dead people. The money is in sick people.
-Bill Maher

Let your food be your medicine, and your medicine be your food.

The doctor of the future will give no medicine but will interest his patients in the care of the human frame, in diet and in the cause and prevention of disease.
-Thomas Edison

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About Kim

I am the mother of two wonderful kiddos, Allen and Zane - and happily married to Lance (HealthyDaddy). :) I love learning about healthy eating and my journey led me to finding a way to keep all of this truly exciting information in one place. I found that I was forgetting recipes that I loved a year ago - or misplacing them. This website is a way to keep it together, while sharing with the world (Or the 5 people who will read this!) what I have learned. I'm trying to change the world...or at least our eating meal at a time. :)


  1. Vicki says:

    Congratulations Kim, for choosing a healthier, more sustainable, and compassionate diet! I agree with you about Forks Over Knives. I wish everyone could see it, because it has the power to transform so many lives from inevitable illness to vibrant health!

    Here’s an idea for your five-year-old: try making his sandwiches with Tofurky Turkey Slices and don’t even tell him you made the switch. They’re so good, he might not even notice! Switching to an all plant-based diet is the healthiest choice a mom can make. And with so many delicious options out there, it’s never been easier. (Have you tried Daiya cheese or Gardein Chicken Tenders?) Our whole family is in love with So Delicious Coconut Milk beverages, yogurts, and ice cream. (My kids love the chocolate coconut milk, and I love their French Vanilla coffee creamer.)

    At first, I was concerned about the calcium, too, but when I asked the people at So Delicious about it on their Facebook page, they explained that when it comes to fortification, more is not always better. They seem to be the only ones out there making a milk that has the right balance of calcium, magnesium, and vitamin D which enables your body to get the most calcium absorption. I also make sure we eat lots of kale, collards, tempeh, figs, soybeans, and tahini, which ensures our family is getting lots of calcium from whole plant foods.

    • Michele says:

      I agree with Vicki! We give our daughterTofurky Turkey slices with mayo, lettuce, and cheese, and she loves them. Not vegan, but still much better than bologna. My husband started taking it to work for lunch.

      After watching Michael Polland’s documentary, Food Inc., we went vegetarian a year ago with the exception of fish. There are too many benefits to eating fish for me to justify giving it up and it’s a lot easier having fish as an option when you’re planning meals as a family and everyone has different tastes. If I was living by myself, I’d go vegan. I go to the Monterey Bay Aquarium’s website to download a pdf of what fish is considered sustainable, fished humanely, and doesn’t have mercury.

      Thanks for the information about milk. I’ll definitely watch the documentary with my husband.

      • Kim says:

        I don’t think I could personally be considered vegan either, because I don’t know if I could totally cut out fish either, to be honest!! I’m so totally getting the Tofurky Slices, and to the earlier poster – I’ll tell my kids the truth, and why.! :)

    • Jamie says:

      So my 2 year old loves 3 6oz cups of orgnic milk a day. Can i replace that with almond milk?

      • Kele says:

        Absolutely! Almond, coconut, hemp, soy, or rice milk are all great alternatives to dairy milk. ^_^

        • Shirley says:

          I gave up cow’s milk a couple of years ago and switched to almond milk. I love it, but I was reading that it is bad for you due to the pesticides used on the almonds. I also read that organic almond milk in the carton that can sit on the shelf instead of cold is bad for you. I live in an area that I cannot buy organic almond milk, I would have to order organic online. What do you think about the safety of almond milk?

  2. Thu-Hien says:

    Loved your post. I NEVER liked the taste of milk. My gut always told me from a young age — why are human’s giving this to their children??!!

  3. Your moment of clarity really resonates with me. We have been doing a green smoothie fast since the 4th of July. We have a salad once or twice a week but other than that it is totally vegetables, fruits, nuts, and seeds. I feel great! I think I will stick to this for a while, even after my goal weight is reached.

  4. Mama J says:

    I saw your post via Forks Over Knives on Facebook. I haven’t seen the movie yet but we have it on hold at our library and I can’t wait. Seeing Food Inc. and Food Matters changed my life. (As well as reading books by Mark Bittman and Micheal Pollan.) Our family went on a reduced meat and diet and now have been meat free for over a year now. We have three kids that gradually adjusted and love everything I cook. I have never been a short order cook so whatever was on the table was and is the only option. My blog has all the recipes that my husband and three kids (5 and up) all love. Take a look….

    Glad to read your post! :)

  5. Susan says:

    Yay for you and your family! I am very excited to hear about your journey to a more compassionate diet. I love Forks Over Knives. I want to second the recommendation for Tofurky for your kiddo. I love the Hickory Smoked slices and so does my omni boyfriend. I don’t think you should not tell him though. I personally would want to be included on such a thing when I was a kid since I feel being sneaky abut food is the biggest violation of trust ever. I had friend feed me deer stew and tell me it was not deer and other friends feed me calamari while telling me it was onion rings. Not cool. Not to mention, lunch time can go from a good time to a traumatic event at school very quickly.

  6. Peggy says:

    I love this blog entry about Forks Over Knives! My husband and I also watched it for the first time yesterday…wow! It was so eye-opening! I immediately called my Dad and told him he had to watch it. You see, my dad, my husband and I have been talking about nutrition and eating healthy for so long now, and there is so much conflicting information! My husband is currently in school to be a Physician Assistant, and is reading The China Study for research on his paper that he is writing. He chose the topic of what a plant based diet can do for heart disease. Wow, did he choose the right book or what! We are all on board and want to make all the changes, but we are like you in that our 9 year old son is so picky! We didn’t start making changes in our diet until about 2 years ago, and even still we included meat and dairy. So he is going to be my biggest challenge. I will keep an eye on this blog to get some recipe ideas for sure!

  7. I loved Forks Over Knives also. My family and I have been vegetarian for about 2 years and are slowing transitioning to vegan. The cheese is the hardest thing for us to give up! We have been off milk for quite awhile. When you think about it, it really doesn’t make sense to drink the milk of another animal! Cows don’t drink human milk right?
    As for the kids, just keep trying new things. Over time they will get used to it. My kids love the Morningstar chicken nuggets.
    Good luck!

  8. Racine says:

    Excellent post. I love your perspective and can completely relate to how you felt about milk. My husband and I could not get home from the theater fast enough to dump out our cow’s milk and cheese after seeing “Forks Over Knives”. We’ve been a vegan family ever since.

    My three year old absolutely loves chickpea mash sandwiches. I have a recipe for it here, . You can use veganaise in place of the avocado, as well.

    • papparocket says:

      I heartily endorse chickpea based sandwich spreads. One that my kids love is where I take a basic tuna salad recipe and simply replace the tuna with mashed chickpeas. I use a food processor to make it go faster. I finely mince some onion (amount depends on how much picky eaters like onion flavor, but no onion really isn’t an option. Very finely chopped and not too much and it gets past my son’s onion detector), and some celery if I have it. It is just as good without the celery, but I like that celery adds volume without adding calories (and hides the onion to a degree). Then I put in 1can drained and rinsed chick peas and pulse until coarsely chopped. Lastly I add sweet pickle relish (with some extra on my son’s sandwich, again to better hide the onion), mayo (or veganaise), maybe some paprika and pulse a couple times just to blend. If you really really have to have that taste of the sea, you can always add a pinch of powered sea weed. But I hate fish, and so the no-fish taste nature of this base recipe is what appeals to me.

      This will keep in the refrigerator for a week, so we often make a double batch and make sandwiches to take to school and work for the whole week.

  9. Jasmine says:

    TOFURKY deli slices are so close to real turkey slices – my 3 year old loves them :) Shes only had meat a handful of times in her life though. I wouldnt feed your son TOFURKY all the time but it’s a good transition product and treat.

  10. Heather says:

    Thanks for this! I had the same milk questions in my head and refrigerator for a while now as well. Calcium comes from a ton of different sources and “milk” just seems to be the one that people are stuck with. As for protein, I know I do not look at my milk for protein, I get a ton of protein everyday and almost 100% from plant sources.

  11. Sue Hess says:

    I drink very little milk now that I am in my 50′s, mostly for cereal or oatmeal.

    Growing up, we lived on a dairy farm and drank the milk right from the cow. Of course, we shipped Grade A milk so the milk was filtered and kept cold in big galvanized tanks inthe milkhouse until it was picked up.

    No, we didn’t have the nutritional values listed on the side of Daisy the Milk Cow, but I have to believe that what we drank then was far better for us than the process that raw milk goes through now.

    Got Milk?

    • Kim says:

      You should try coconut or almond milk if you are only having it on cereal and see if you notice any difference!! :)

      • papparocket says:

        Unsweetened vanilla almond milk taste better on my morning cereal than the secretions from a lactating bovine. But we do need to acknowledge that cows milk is the perfect food … for cows!

        There is no longer any doubt about the damage that dairy; raw or not, industrial or organic, liquid or cultured does to our long term health. If milk was necessary for strong bones, then we should see the more dairy consumed the stronger bones would be and the lower the rate of osteoporosis. The China Study (T. Colin Campbell) has a chart showing the rate of hip fractures (as an indicator of osteoporosis) versus dairy consumption in countries around the world. The relationship is almost perfect, but perfectly negative. The more dairy, the greater number of hip fractures per 100,000 people!

        Got milk? No I like my bones too much!

  12. Liz Neuch says:

    I’m with you, Kim. I went vegetarian last year and am trying hard to go totally vegan. Switched to almond milk. I’ve lost a good deal of weight, too.

  13. Ryan says:

    This is a great post and I think you are making a wise decision. I just had one question (and I promise I am not passing judgement, it is really just a question). You mentioned in your post that you were a fan of the engine 2 diet as well as the China Study. In the China Study, there is a part where they discuss a study done in India (*I think?) and the recreation of that study where they show that casein, the protein in cows milk, was used to turn liver cancer tumors on and off based on the amount given. I am just wondering why you didn’t decide to give up dairy based on that information.

    I read the China Study in January and immediately gave up dairy, but had a very difficult time giving up meat. 7 weeks ago I gave up all meat as well as the dairy I had already given up. I have lost 21 lbs of fat and my blood pressure and cholesterol are down to healthy levels. I personally view dairy as being more detrimental to our health than some meats.

    Again, I think this is a good move. Congrats. You wont miss cows milk after a few days. The only time I miss it now is when I want some oreo’s, which I dont eat anymore. :)

    • Kim says:

      I’m not sure, Ryan. I guess something about seeing it, rather than reading it really resonated with me. Like I said, based on the information I had, I was on the fence for a while – it just seemed like that perfect “moment” for me! Your story is amazing!! I wish more people would be believers based on stories like yours and all of the others out there!

    • Molly says:

      I just wanted to pop in on this question too, if that’s ok :) I think that when anyone is trying to make a big change in their lives but just hasn’t found that motivation yet, we all have different things that really make everything come together and make sense. It’s different for everyone! Whether it be quitting smoking, losing weight, exercising, going back to school, really ANYTHING. Everyone knows full well how bad smoking is for them, but what makes one person quit wont be the same thing that makes someone else quit. It might be a book for one person, a personal story told to someone else, a documentary for someone else. I know I’ve watched so many documentaries on health over the past couple of years and it took Forks Over Knives to finally make me take the leap into vegetarianism (actually hoping to go vegan, at least most of the time). Anyway, I like the topic and the question ;o)

    • Anna says:

      Just an FYI…Oreos are vegan :-)

      • Aimee says:

        OMG I never knew this! I am so happy right now! I see double stuff Oreos in my near future :)

        • Kim says:

          Well… I wouldn’t exactly promote them as a health food. They contain HFCS among other things I can’t pronounce!! Try my smooth Chocolate Chia seed pudding recipe (look in recipes) – instead!! :)
          Here are the yucky ingredients in Oreos! :)

        • noah z says:

          If you want a “healthier” Oreo try Newman O’s! Also vegan, less junky than an Oreo and dangerously addictive!

          Congrats to everyone discovering the the benefits of a plant based diet! I have been vegetarian or vegan most of my life (vegan now for almost 2 years) and I’m amazed to see how many people are finally starting to take responsibility for their and their family’s health.

  14. stacey says:

    My husband and I also watched this movie last night. I was so excited to see it and I have to say it lived up to everyone of my expectations. It will be a long journey for us moms who feel as though we have seen the light. It will also be such a beautiful one, as we will feel awesome and our kids will get sick less and will grow up caring for animals and having respect for what they eat. My daughter is only 1 1/2, but along the way we will be very open with her about food and why we buy the things we do. Maybe you can start having conversations with your son about the film and how you felt while watching it.
    There are also so many GREAT recipes out there too…. this is one of my fav sites:
    enjoy and good luck to you!!

  15. kirsten says:

    That is awesome! It was the documentary Earthlings that did it for me. I am still waiting for Forks over Knifes to come out on DVD.
    Tofurkey makes a great lunch meat substitute for turkey….my 3 year old eats it!

  16. Deborah Jackson says:

    The fatfreevegan blog has been an indispensable support in my healthy eating. 15 years vegetarian, 2+ years vegan, whole food. This page from the blog offers kid friendly recipes. Also, engine2 diet book and website has goto recipes. and Whole Foods “Health Starts Here” labelled items are “forks over knives” friendly. I think giving children joyful, rather than fearful healthy eating habits is one of the best gifts a parent can give a child. We all know how difficult it is to change habits especially eating habits even when we want to. Though you/me may be in the minority, I can attest to the fact that it is getting easier every year to eat healthier within our culture and when you do you will inspire others. Best to you.

  17. Kim Haile says:

    Thank you so much, Vicki!! And, sorry for the delay in response – we’ve been evacuated because of the Austin fires for a few days, but finally home safe and sound! Thank you again for your support – and we’ll try the tofurkey turkey slices. :)

  18. Nick says:

    Congrats on the change! I’ve been eating a plant based diet for 15 years now and won’t ever look back. My wife and I are raising two kids on a plant based diet as well. Vicki’s suggestions are good – however, in my honest opinion, those foods should only be transition foods at best. Try to make them a staple in your diet, but rather an occasional thing.

    Making starches and fruits/veggies the center of your plate will keep you living the best life possible. Don’t be afraid of carbohydrates like the majority of America and keep your fat below 10% of your calories and you’ll thrive.

    I’m constantly trying to evolve my health as well, so thanks for sharing your thoughts and I’ll take away a lot of inspiration from it myself.

    Good luck,


  19. Rob says:

    I flushed dairy products from my life 3.5 years ago and immediately had a bunch of minor health issues clear up. Got rid of all other animal products a couple of months later and saw my cholesterol levels plummet and a whole bunch of “aging” phenomena in my body reverse themselves. I’ve recently gone even further and stripped out anything that comes in a package with more than one ingredient, as well as anything refined (no breads, oils, sugar, etc..)

    My weight is dropping, my health is improving even more and I’m well on my way to being a 54-year old skinny teenager again.

    The industrial food complex has done nobody a favor other than their shareholders.

    • Kim says:

      Rob, that is amazing – sooo happy for you! It is amazing to hear the disbelievers when you see stories like yours! A:)

      • Rob says:


        I don’t even talk to people I know about this stuff. It just induces, by and large, a long diatribe about how it might work for me, but would never work for them, etc. etc..

        The conversation usually veers away to other topics when I answer with: “That’s OK; everyone needs to make their own choices. If you would rather not change your eating and remain overweight or sick, and doom yourself and your kids to a shortened lifespan, that’s your choice. I was just telling you what works for me, and why I am suddenly healthier, happier and lighter.”

        It really is fascinating what the body will do to repair itself if you give it the right ingredients (and remove the wrong ones). I wish I’d begun eating like this when I was 20 rather than in my 50s.

        I bootstrapped the change in my diet from being a “bad” vegan to being more attentive by doing a 30-day juice fast as in “Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead”. 30 pounds came off in 30 days. Switching to Joel Fuhrman’s plan in “Eat to Live” when I started eating again continued the weight loss. I did discover that I don’t really like cooked food much any more, though, which doesn’t bode well for my garden full of potatoes. Fortunately they are mostly purple, blue and red potatoes, rather than white, so I should be able to find a way to blend them into my salads without the huge sugar-jolt one gets from white potatoes.

        I highly recommend “Eat to Live”, by the way. Much of it is anti-medical establishment ranting, but there’s a good amount of science and actual “how to eat” information as well, including recipes and meal plans.

        And, since we’re talking about “Forks over Knives” I can highly recommend both “Prevent and Reverse Heart Disease” and “The China Study” as much meatier versions of this movie.

  20. Molly says:

    I JUST watched Forks Over Knives this past weekend and seriously could have written your post. I haven’t eaten meat since I watched it, haven’t had dairy (but did put one egg in my homemade granola bars, which I’m thinking I can do without from now on!). It’s a powerful movie. Some things it really has going for it is that they aren’t saying you are bad for doing this or that, it’s not about animal cruelty, and they aren’t even saying to go 100% vegetarian! Many of their studies have shown that a diet with 5% or less of animal protein creates the health they want for all of us. I’ve been thinking of going vegetarian for a couple of years. I, too, have a husband and two kids ages 10 and 13 to think about. Years ago I cut out hydrogenated oils, corn syrup and MSG 100% and I got my cholesterol down from 213 to 158, which I’m very proud of, but the individual number I want to tweak now. I don’t have and never have had weight to lose, it’s genetic for me. Anyways, I’m so glad I found your site. Forks Over Knives posted about your blog post on their site this afternoon (of course right after watching the movie I “liked” it on Facebook). If you watched it via live stream, you missed the little extra videos you can watch on the disc. One of the women from the documentary talked about how her favorite part of her practice is seeing infertile women become pregnant after just a few cycles of cutting out animal protein. Well, my SIL was only able to conceive both of her children after going vegan for a few months! She was already vegetarian and tried for years to get pg, then she found out about this vegan thing. After a few months of being vegan, she conceived! She went back to vegetarian and when she was ready to conceive again, she went vegan for a few month and voila! Really amazing, I wish I could tell the world!

    • Kim says:

      That is awesome, Molly. Melissa did a post about using chia seeds in her baking – you should try it and see how you like it!! :) It’s the ladybug bars post….
      I wish I could tell the world too!!!

  21. bonnie480 says:

    Hi Kim,
    Great post. I totally agree with everything you said. Why are we drinking milk from another mammal? Why? It just does not make sense and it is all about money. I wanted to refer you to a book, “30-Day Vegan Challenge” by Colleen Patrick-Goudreau. This is a great resource if you want to go fully plant based. It has some amazing information and some delicious recipes. It has everything you need to know about the vegan diet. Good luck! I bought Forks Over Knives a few night ago at Barnes and Noble and have been excited about watching it. I will watch it tonight and after reading your article I am even more excited about it.


    • Kim says:

      Thank you Bonnie! I will definitely read that!!! I want to learn as much as possible to help keep me close to it – and passionate about it.

  22. Michele says:

    I’d like to see the breakdown of fats in the drinks. There is a huge difference between saturated fat (bad) and unsaturated fat (good). Milk may have the lowest amount of fat, but does it have the lowest amount of saturated fat?

  23. Lisa says:

    Please tell us where we can find “Forks Over Knives” so that we can view it. Is it only available through Netflix? Thank you

  24. Nadine says:

    wow, synchronicity! I just streamed Forks Over Knives over the weekend. I got my honey to watch it, too. Tonight, he’s showing it to a friend of ours (I have a meeting). I’m on day 48 of a 60-day juicing fest (not fast!) and when I go back to chewable foods, we’re adopting a primarily whole food plant based lifestyle. Check out my blog about my journey if you’d like
    way to go ladies!

  25. Christa says:

    I’ve been a vegetarian for 10 years and a vegan for 6. It took me a over a year of testing and researching before I was pretty comfortable cooking vegan. I personally don’t like the taste of most of the fake deli meats, but everyone’s different. If you are looking for kid-friendly vegan recipes, I strongly recommend checking out vegandad’s blog:

    All of his recipes are free on his website, but I was so pleased with most of the ones I tried, that I also bought his cooking e-book.

    My suggestion would be to explain to your child you reason for going vegan (in terms they can understand). Then try to make vegan versions of foods they like to help ease the transition. I try and add a new item every few days to expand their tastes.

    Good luck!

  26. SuperMom101 says:

    Terrific post! Thank you for sharing your experience. I had the pleasure of viewing the movie at a screening (of all places) at the Museum of Science in Boston this past spring. Imagine! A movie about food and preventing and reversing diseases is shown to a packed audience at a science museum. (Also had the pleasure of having my book signed by Rip, author of the Engine 2 Diet.)

    Gave up all dairy over 11 years ago when I was diagnosed with a hormone receptive breast cancer at age of 38. (I still eat very limited amounts of organic, wild caught fish and meats, but no dairy EVER! )

    Unfortunately cow’s milk is still in the fridge for my husband (I switched to soy) and the kids. Although thankfully it has been spoiling recently. Our 17 year-old did a little test and had no cow’s milk for three weeks and his acne cleared up. Went back to milk and it flared up.

    Most frustrating is cow’s milk is subsidized by the federal government so it is on every school lunch menu. Every gym you walk in to has the athletes with the ridiculous milk mustache. Last time I checked our children don’t run off the fields or courts looking for a milk bottle.

    It’s so insane that our 16 year-old daughter (who doesn’t drink cow’s milk) can’t get water with lunch because the federal government sees no nutritional value in water and it can’t be served with lunch or the school won’t get their “milk money.” Bottled water is extra and there’s no where to refill a water bottle.

    The tide is turning thanks to posts such as yours.

    Best health always,

    • Kim says:

      Thank you,. Lisa!! What a great response, and that is so awesome about your son and his acne! I have a 14 year old who I will be sure to tell this to! I’m assuming and hoping that eating this way also helped you with your diagnosis 11 years ago – amazing!

  27. Brandon says:

    Saw this on my Fb feed and I found it very interesting and informative. However I am posting to answer your question about proteins. It isn’t that animal proteins at healthier than plant proteins, it is that animal proteins are simpler in molecular structure and thus easier to breakdown. Animals are mainly proteins and fats, therefore their molecular structure will be simpler when it comes to these things. The simpler the structure the easier it is to breakdown and process in the body and thereby giving more bang for your buck. Plant proteins are not made like animal proteins, where an animal is mainly the aforementioned molecule, plants are mainly made of carbohydrates and starches. This means that any protein contained within the plant is more complex so that when it is converted in the body a lot more junk molecules are created in order to process the protein and thus giving you less in return.

    Hope this helped.

  28. Deanne says:

    Smartdeli makes great vegan lunch slices. My daughters love the turkey version!

  29. Lisa says:

    Kim, you should throw away all Horizon brand items you have-not just the milk. They are an inferior organic brand. One of the worst out there. Please research them also. may have some info. Love that you dumped your milk. We have been brainwashed to believe this is needed for calcium.

  30. Patti says:

    Great post. I saw the movie in Philadelphia and met RIP!!!! Wa hoo! For awesome tips for feeding your kids vegan, visit Mama Pea at

    I wish I had had this information when I was raising my kids….

  31. Sunny Beeker says:

    I watched Forks Over Knives a week ago (as recommended by and it was amazing and another part of the journey of me changing my life and my family’s – not quite there yet! My biggest question is about soy. Lots of talk about Tofurky etc…. I have heard not so great news about processed soy – and I am wondering if that is the healthy alternative everyone says it is. As far as diary – if I don’t buy it – no one gets it! :) We eat the ocassional cheese, but have pretty much cut dairy out of our fridge. My biggest challenge is the kids, of course, and coming up with meatless meals that everyone will enjoy. Lots of great suggestions on websites above. Time to start exploring and experimenting!

    • Kim says:

      I am not fond of the Soy idea either – we really already don’t eat processed foods. Thanks to EVERYONE for all of the great suggestions!

  32. Rachel says:

    For help with kid-friendly menus, definitely check out:
    Peas and Thank You is a hilarious and informative blog full of awesome family-friendly vegan recipes, and she just published a NYTimes bestselling recipe book!

  33. Cindy says:

    Don’t worry about your son getting sick. I have a 21 year old daughter who was a very picky eater. They will not let themselves get sick. She was a tiny little thing (who rarely was sick) that grew into a (mostly) healthy woman. We were not vegans at the time but we ate a very healthy diet. She now eats a great variety of foods and is transitioning to a vegan diet because animal products cause eczema outbreaks. No animal products, no eczema. Offer your son a wide variety of foods. Make a deal that he has to try a new food every day. Kids are smart and strong, he can do it.

    • Kim says:

      Aw, thank you! That is what worries me so much. He is 5 an only 35 lbs. Just a little man – but sooo healthy and so smart! Who knows, maybe he will thrive when I take away the meat and dairy.

  34. Kim I just watched this with my husband two nights ago after a friend on Twitter told me it was out. I LOVED it. I’ve been toying with the idea of vegetarianism for a few weeks now and this movie has all but made me want to make a giant leap to veganism. *I will state that I was formerly a self-decribed crazy carnivore prior to all this.* But these few weeks have been the best–I’ve never felt so amazing. I really have no desire to go to filthy meat/animal products again! I also love your milk chart!!! Thank you for that!

    • Kim says:

      You are so welcome! I just told someone else about this so I”ll tell you too – Crazy Sexy Cancer is another compelling documentary that makes you want to toss the meat! :)

  35. Lori says:

    Thumbs up to pouring the cow’s milk down the drain!! I have a recently weaned granddaughter about to turn one and really want to tell my daughter in law not to give her cow’s milk, but she drinks lots herself. So not sure how to approach the subject, and they don’t live near us either so we don’t see them very often. Any suggestions?

    • Kim says:

      You might just tell them that you watched an awesome movie – that it’s both for vegans and non-vegans — just presented to be a factual movie. OR, another REALLY great movie that doesn’t seem quite as “educational” is Crazy Sexy Cancer. Unfortunately it looks strange to try to change anyone’s mind or “push” things on them, but you can try to share “entertainment” with them and just hope that it changes their lives like it has so many others. :) The crazy sexy cancer trailer is pretty compelling – might even forward that as an email. Here is a link:

  36. Nicole says:

    Thanks for your article. I’m glad that you have taken the leap to better your health, the lives of our animal friends and the environment.

    The suggestions of eating vegan junk food should only be as a transitional period. Remember the goal is whole food plant based. Tofurky and vegannaise are heavily processed foods that contain refined sugar and sodium.

    You provide the food for your children, whole foods and the child can determine how much to eat. If there’s fibre in evereytng they eat, they won’t overstuff themselves.

    I highly recommend visiting as well as Dr. Mcdougall’s site for raising children on a whole food plant based lifestyle. I also love Happy Herbivore’s cookbook (check it out on amazon) and Susan’s website

    Good luck in your quest to be a plant eater! Peace, Nicole x

  37. christa says:

    Kim, I liked your comments and I loved your quotes at the end!
    Besides vegan, you should consider a diet as close to whole foods as possible. Using “fake” vegan foods for transition is ok but they are high in fat and in sodium. If true health is the goal, then opting for foods as close to their original state is the best. Ex. an apple is better than applesauce.
    try the transition foods one at a time and gradually your children’s taste buds will change. They will thank you for throwing out the milk and will be almost surprised they ever liked cow’s milk.
    Get rid of cheese a lit bit at a time – just stop adding it to recipes. Once again, they’ll get used to it and won’t miss it.
    good luck!

  38. I found this article via the FOK twitter and so glad I read it! I just watched FOK finally yesterday the 5th along with a few other docs I’d recommend (Sick, fat and Nearly dead/ FOOD MATTERS/ Food Inc. ). I saw Crazy sexy cancer last year and that too is sooooo good! I would love my family to have it click how important a plant based diet is but it’s so hard for people to accept. I try to eat only raw produce these days, and motivated more so after watching all those documentaries !

  39. Elizabeth says:

    No thank you! We follow a real food/whole food diet and have never been healthier. Raw milk from grassfed cows is one of the healthiest things you can consume. These animals are not pets, the Lord gave them to us to feed ourselves. I am shocked that this movie is promoting a vegan/vegetarian diet. Some can thrive on that, but most cannot. Please read Real Food by Nina Planck before you jump on this bandwagon.

    • Kim says:

      Elizabeth, I totally respect your opinion and will certainly check out what Nina Planck has to say. It’s always interesting to me to hear both sides.
      99% of the comments on here are from people who thrive on plant based diets, so please just respect that our opinions are as strong as yours. All the best, Kim

    • I agree wholeheartedly, Elizabeth. I wish more people would read Nina Planck’s book, Real Food. I was a vegetarian for decades. My children were raised on brown rice, soy milk and tofu. I regret that so much. Now we follow a traditional diet: raw milk and cheese, grass fed meat, fish, vegetables and fruit, most of it local. It is the kind of diet people have eaten throughout history, instead of a diet designed by our wishes or ideas. I used to scorn people who told me that vegetarianism was dangerous, and I understand the response of vegans to criticism of their diet, but there is a reason why most people in the world, if they can afford to, include at least some form of animal products in their diets. Please get more information. Look at both sides and then make a decision.

  40. I saw Forks Over Knives in theaters a few months ago and was completely blown away. It really made me rethink my choices. I think that this is a film that should be seen by everyone. While I cannot commit to becoming a vegan or vegetarian I have definitely started to lower my intake of animal products and replace them with whole food, plant based meals.

  41. Lisa says:

    I just watched Forks Over Knives today! So excited it came to net flicks also. I have been working my self and my family to a plant based diet and feel like I was loosing ground (due more to economics than anything). After watching this movie, I am so inspired and motivated to get right back on track no matter what! I plan on watching it again!

  42. Christa says:

    Eating a plant-based diet is much cheaper than eating the standard american diet. I can buy 15 lb bags of basmati and jasmine rice at my local BJ’s (similar to a Sam’s) for $15 (yep, $1 per pound). I also get really good deals on organic dried beans on-line. I basically buy pantry items in bulk locally or on-line (if I can’t find them locally). The rest is just fresh produce. The expensive vegetarian/vegan options are the processed foods (fake meats and cheeses). I rarely buy the fake meats, but I do buy some cheese for things like lasagna or pizzas. If you want some good, home-style recipes but ‘veganized’ try Vegan Planet by Robin Robertson.

    I went to Nina Planck’s website that you referenced. I like the fact that she advocates whole foods, but she also advocates red meat and lard….lard?? She has no health or science background. She’s conducted no studies and has no statistics supporting her diet. I have no doubt that the foods taste great, but that doesn’t make them healthy. If I had to choose between a diet studied and analyzed by 5 physicians/researchers through different independent studies/research versus a book written by a woman whose primary credentials are that she grew up on a farm and worked for years at a farmer’s market, the choice to me is obvious. I respect your opinion and Nina’s, but at the end of the day, her advice is purely opinion. There is no supporting evidence.

    • Read her book. It is full of citations and sources– 15 pages in which she cites her sources, as well as an extensive bibliography. Check it out. Many studies, statistics, all that stuff. Read Michael Pollan’s books, too, The Omnivore’s Dilemma is great but Nina’s is especially accessible, to the point.

  43. Susan says:

    Thank you for your post It’s refreshing to read that others are realizing the heath benefits of a plant-strong diet. I went vegan 8 months ago in response to very alarming cholesterol numbers. I was shocked, as I maintained healthy weight, exercised like a demon, and ate what I thought was a great diet. Doctor wanted me to go on statins, and I refused. I cut out the animals, eggs and dairy. Three months later I was the talk of my doctor’s group practice, as not one of the physician’s believed that I could use food to lower my cholesterol so drastically. Tell your other patients, I urged. Her response? “No one will follow such and extreme diet. Everyone just wants to take a pill”.
    My diet isn’t extreme. I’ll tell you what’s extreme — open heart surgery!

  44. tom hickie says:

    Does anyone ever consider how much energy and chemicals it takes to grow all the nuts , fruits and vegggies and then transport and market them and all the pollution created and all the other species murdered so people can swill on green and fruits. a cow or a chicken can live on the grass produced by any decent lawn and provides sustenance without the destruction caused by vegatable and fruit farming. Consider how manyt forests are destroyed so some foody can enjoy a banana or almond drink. And why call the liquid produced by hemp or almonds milk. Milk only comes from mammals and it is the first and most natural food for mammals . Enjoy your food but do not be fooled into believing that how you eat makes you better or even healthier. People in India are vegetarians and die young from disease. Have a great life tom hickie in fredericton

    • smellycow says:

      It takes FAR more energy to produce the same amount of calories from meat as it does any fruit, vegetable or grain. The most destructive force to rainforests is cattle production.
      Hemp and almond drinks are called milk because they are marketed as alternatives to cow’s milk, have similar consistencies and appearance, and are used in the same ways.
      Milk is great if you are a baby. Cow’s milk is great if you are a calf. Are you a baby cow?
      Enjoy your fruit and know that it makes you better and healthier.
      People in India use a lot of dairy, such as ghee, which is fat from butter. Dairy is the cause of disease.

  45. kristen says:

    Great post! I gave up milk after seeing the movie, but am having trouble getting the rest of my family to do the same. The kids do not like the taste of almond or rice milk and I am not crazy about giving them soy milk. I have tried it and it did not agree with me at all. I am hesitant to give them the chocolate varieties since I don’t want to replace one bad thing with another. Any advice on that front?

    • Kim says:

      Kristen – they may not notice it on cereal – and will they drink smoothies? It’s a great way to change up the milk without them noticing AND also to sneak in some kale or spinach (both have calcium). We’ve all be told through the medical field and through media that we must serve dinner with a glass of milk, but I really usually just serve Odwalla’s Superfood Green Juice or water now. I do buy OJ and other things that are calcium fortified as much as possible to try to find other ways to get it in. I face the same dilemmas – but hope this helps a little!! :) (PS soy milk doesn’t agree with me, either.)

  46. Katie Stewart says:

    I have goose bumps reading your post! It took me two days to watch fork over knives, due to the fact I have to compete with the 3 yr old and veggie tales! LOL My husband and I finally finished watching it last night. We both looked at each other and said “lets do this”. This is coming from a man whose family still owns a HUGE cattle farm. I can post pics. My husbands idea of any meal is meat and potato. BUT….6 months ago I made a decision for our family we were going to start eating healthy. Organic and as natural as possible. I played around with different milks. But ended up going back to Organic Valley’s 0% milk. We ate mostly chicken and lean turkey. Of course tons of fruits and veggies. All of us has made the transition to healthier eating, except toddler whose diet consist of fruit and annie’s mac n cheese. We also started running and exercising more. Happy to report we lost a combined weight of 40lbs. But….we have come to a stand still. I still lack energy. I still have horrible breakouts. I still get headaches and feel moody. My toddler still suffers with eczema. My husband…well, I think he is made of iron because he doesn’t have any symptoms other than a few more tummy pounds to lose. My oldest son has adhd and my daughter battles with acne, hormones and weight. So with all this in mind I asked myself what do I have to lose? If what we have been doing, eating animal products, hasn’t been improving life, and despite exercise, yoga, meditation, medication isn’t helping either , its time to address diet again. Now, I do have a medical back ground. I am a nurse. I have some knowledge on nutrition and I also have a whole lot of common sense. I know thru research there are a lot of other ways to gain protein and calcium. I know there is a reason mass media has been pushing lean meat and 0%fat milk products. Its only a matter of time before big brother realizes we as Americans are not going to be pushed to eat government endorsed diets. Now, I have to be honest. I am not becoming vegan because I don’t want to eat maybell the cow. I have been born and raised to view animals as a source of food. I am chosing to be vegan for my health. Maybe over time my views will change. What I find so interesting is when I look back at my food ideas it was really only a matter of time before I made this transition. I have always been so picky about my meat. The taste and smell was something I normally had to put out of my mind or I would not eat it. So where do I go from here? I have no clue. I know I have a fridge full of organic milk and cheese and greek yogurt. A chest freezer full of organic chicken and ground turkey. Does that matter? NOPE. What is 50-100$ in comparison to possibly a healthier life? I will continue heavy research in veganisim and recipes. This will not be easy but I love challenges. Especially when the reward outweighs the grief.
    There will be a lot of strangers, friends and family who will not agree with a person’s decision to become vegan. That is ok. People are scared of change. That is o.k. I’m not here to change anyone’s mind. Nor are you. I don’t believe in a negative reaction as if we are making the decision to join a natzi group. For heaven’s sake, we are just cutting animal products from our diet. BTW, love love love your milk comparison chart. You saved me a lot of work!

    • Kim says:

      That is soooo awesome Katie! Please update us when you can – I’d love to know if giving up animal products changes the breakouts, energy, eczema, etc… I have no doubt it will!! Keep us posted and I’m so glad you read the post and commented – especially since you are in the medical field. :)

      • Katie Stewart says:

        Well it has been a year and 3 months since going plant based cold turkey! Nothing but good has come from this! My husband and I continued to lose weight and now we maintain. My daughter has lost her baby fat but still battles with acne, she is 15. My son’s eczema has cleared up completely. And I have more energy. My 4 yr old’s taste has grown leaps and bounds. He eats everything from kale to kombucha tea! He went from not eating any veggies or beans to loving almost every meal I cook! I love our way of eating and would never dream of going back!

  47. James Shaw says:

    We finally watched FOK this week, thanks for the recommendation Kim! I was surprised what the premise of the movie was; I was expecting a vegan rant about the philosophy of eating meat.. Not what appeared to be clinical proof that there were good reasons to stay off the animal protein! The cancer statistics were shocking. Movies like this and Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead have certainly given me a lot to think about..

  48. Talena says:

    Thanks so much for your post! I felt the exact same way after watching FOK. I have been trying to make the change to a vegan diet. My husband is not wild about the idea but he is atleast willing to cut back on meat consumption and dairy. I feel like i have to learn how to cook all over again:O My recipes always centered around the meat. I’ve been having fun with it though and I have really great kids who have loved experimenting. I feel a little scared to go “all the way” vegan, I don’t want people to think I’m judging them and their choices and I don’t know if I can never have ice cream again! Some people can be really critical when you make a choice like this.

    • Kim says:

      You should totally try Nada Moo Ice cream!!! It is made with coconut milk and makes you feel like you are not having to sacrifice anything!! My favorite flavor is Gotta Do Chocolate. :)

  49. Kim, I completely agree with you. I discovered FOK’s not long after it was released and I felt the same way. I added it to my recommeded viewing on my new website. My website is not complete yet, but if you liked FOK’s I’d at least recommend watching the recommendations I have on my website. After watching all of these it’s hard to come down to anything else but that It’s all a big fat food conspiracy! Sorry for sounding so paranoid, but that’s what it seems like.

  50. Alan says:

    I recently watched this movie and totally resonated with it. I am definitely cutting down on the dairy, but I am finding it hard to totally remove it. I am aiming for this transition though. Am trying to introduce my parents with high cholesterol to the movie.

  51. Bridget says:

    Wow! Just finished watching forks over knives and I have officially decided to change the way me and my family eat. I have always loved milk and eggs, but after watching a few documentaries and reading articles about them and their possible negative impact on longevity. I am asking a change. I am doing research on doing this diet the right way and this is what brought me to this website. I have a daughter who has been struggling with obesity. Now this is strange to me and her father who have never struggled with this problem. I don’t buy fattening foods, or fry foods, we eat mostly fish and turkey, or chicken,you will rarely find sweets in my house, and i try to balance all of our meals, and only buy whole grain products so i have been trying to find the cause. I have stopped letting her eat lunch or breakfast out at the school, and packing her lunch instead. After this she has went down from a size 16 to a 12-14. I switched her from regular milk to soy, coconut, milks and she has went down to a size 12. She is on swim team now and wants to eat healthy for the energy she will need. I just wanna make sure she gets the nutrients she needs. I want to do this the right way. After hearing that most kids now a days won’t out live their parents I am greatly concerned. I am glad I found your website, and the recipes will help greatly.


  52. Kimmy says:

    OMG I M so thankful to have found this blog. I have been vegan for a while but, watching the movie with my husband last night, convinced him to cut meat & dairy out of HIS diet.
    Now here is my dilemma …hopefully someone can help me. Of my 4 kids, only one ears veggies. One has an egg protein and eats 80% meat protein, one has autism and is on a GFCF diet, and the last lives on bacon, hard boiled eggs & pasta with butter.

    How can I get them to start eating differently?!!! How can I make something that they will all eat?

  53. Kelley says:

    I completely support your decision to toss the milk. Meat and dairy aren’t essential or beneficial to the body except in absence of fruits, vegetables and grains. My son is just turning 1.5 yrs and we have taken him from eating lots of dairy to only small amounts (he is very picky still). My husband does not share my view of the harming effects in milk but some people are very stubborn and stuck in their way of thinking. Milk is denatured by the pasteurization and can cause autoimmune problems as well as cancer. Humans only need so much protein in their diet and they get enough from plants as well as all the vitamins and minerals needed for growing bodies.

    Go vegan and you will be able to truly experience freedom from these evil meat and dairy companies. I hope to one day get my son and husband on the same page as me. I find the industries to be horrific and deplorable.


  1. [...] had meat or dairy (maybe in minuscule un-noticeable portions) since the day after I wrote my FOK post.  Don’t even ask.  I had one last event that I had to get all meaty at, and let’s [...]

  2. [...] and some Nada Moo coupons! Most of you readers already know how much I love FOK, but if not, my post is here. And, Nada Moo is just DEVINE dairy free “ice cream” made with coconut milk. Here is [...]

  3. [...] her up on it! That, and the fact that I have been so close to being vegan for a while now anyway, after watching Forks Over Knives (WATCH IT), it just seemed like a logical next step for [...]

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