Toronto Vegetarian Food Festival: Three Reasons For a Non-Vegetarian To Check It Out

31st Toronto Vegetarian Food Festival, the largest in North America, will open its doors again from September 11th to 13th at the Toronto’s Harbourfront.

What's in it for you if you don’t intend to give up eating meat? Here are the top three reasons for you to check it out:

Get tasty ways to cook your veggies from cooking demos and cook books

Your mom told you to eat more vegetables, and you have tried to pass this idea on to your children. But neither you nor they eat enough for some reason. Sounds familiar? The reason could be that you…

  • Don’t find them tasty
  • Don’t know where to start and what recipes to trust
  • Hesitant to waste your time and money on cooking something unknown
  • Need meat to feel full as veggies won’t fill your tummy

I find that many North Americans who don’t like vegetables just don’t enjoy them prepared the North American way. They are tired of eating steamed veggies and broccoli with a dip. But if you check out world culinary traditions, you will find a galore of succulent, colourful, and healthy meatless dishes. Try Oriental, Mediterranean, Indian, Thai, Russian and Ukrainian recipes. These cousines include hundreds of traditional and hearty vegetarian meals.

Vegetarians and vegans don’t use meat, so they come up with the most creative ways to cook their vegetables. Did you know, for example, that cashews can be the main ingredient in healthy sauces, dips, and even ice-cream? Have you ever tried dehydrated zucchini chips that energize you and don’t leave a taste of guilt behind unlike fat-fried high Sodium potato chips?

So why not try new things? Cooked with skill and a dash of love, sauces and vegetables please your palate. Many vegetarian dishes are so delicious that you won’t care that they are meatless. Coming to a cooking demo and trying the food afterwards is a great way to get an idea or two for your next dinner. Another good idea is to sample food presented by food exhibitors (more about it later!)

Testing vegan meals at the Toronto vegetarian food fair

And, of course, visit the TVA bookstore to check out the best cook books!

Learn effective ways to lose weight and improve health from the speaker events

Registered Dietitians are going vegetarian and vegan....

...And this is an undeniable proof that these diets are healthy and nutritionally dense.

Despite smear campaigns and people’s own natural resistance to give up familiar foods, more and more people try healthy vegetarian and vegan diet every year. Did you watch recent episode on CNN with Dr. Sanjay Gupta and Bill Clinton who spoke about improvements to his health caused by the vegan diet that he adopted after his heart attack? Here is the link to this episode, The Last Heart Attack, without commercials.

Now you can hear recent nutrition news directly from the source. Notable speakers, dietitians and MD, will present at the Vegetarian Food Festival. You will have a chance to meet them, and ask your questions. And you will have delicious food before and after.

Two years ago I came to the lecture of Brenda Davis, RD, and realized my family did not get enough Calcium. Brenda Davis is the most non-partisan vegan in the world. Reading her Amazon bestseller book, Becoming Vegan, gave me a well-rounded perspective of the pros and cons of the vegan diet. This was at the time when my sister has gone vegan, and our mother was worried that she would die from malnutrition. Brenda’s book lifted our worries; her lecture made us re-examine what we ate and make adjustments.

You can read Brenda’s Interview about Calcium Rich Foods here. This is the kind of information you could receive at the speaker events at Toronto Vegetarian Food Festival.

Learn new ways to lose weight and gain muscle

Learn about being a top athlete on vegan diet and part with a misconception that you must eat meat in order to gain muscle mass. This message is especially important for women. I hear from many women that they don't want to eat more meat, but nutritionists at the gyms tell them to when they enroll into fat loss programs. No, you don’t have to! In fact, you can give up meat completely, and still get a killer lean figure, flat abs and toned arms. Learn about it from the talk of  Robert Cheeke – champion vegan bodybuilder, and a lecture by Julieanna Hever who focuses on the weight loss on plant-based diets. There is nothing more powerful and inspiring than human stories.

Note: there is usually a huge interest for speaker events, so check out whether the queue is forming 20-30 minutes prior to your chosen event.

Food… Especially, free food!

Hey, this is the fun part! Everyone loves free food. More than 100 exhibitors will let you sample their new products. As I write this, I can still feel the taste of that succulent raw organic chocolate that I tried last year.

  • Vegetarian and vegan snacks presented at the fair will introduce new options to your kids launch boxes.
  • Power bars that are filled with natural ingredients rather than sugar, high fructose syrup and taste enhancers, will be handy if you exercise or have a hectic life eating on the run.
  • vega bars soild at the Toronto vegetarian food fair

  • I especially recommend tasting soy, almond and rice milk and products that are made of them, including delicious ice cream. Replacing milk with fortified almond or rice milk may help you fight seasonal allergies and many other health issues associated with lactose. However, it takes time to find your favourite brand, so tasting these products at a food festival will help you be sure before you buy.
  • Grocery coupons are often handed out with the purchase of food, and special prices at the festival makes it worthwhile to spend your dollars there.

So check out speaker schedule, and book a couple of hours on Sep 11-Sep 13, 2015 for the Toronto Veg Food Fest. Take your family along and have fun: learn new cooking skills and recipes, get weight loss and healthy living ideas, and enjoy delicious food from all over the world.

Hope to see you there!


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