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I'm not sure if I'm posting this in the right forum, so sorry if not.

In the August issue of Self magazine there is a feature about having healthy cocktail parties, and it has a bunch of recipes that celebrities supposedly serve at their soirees. There is a drink called Fresh Peach Fizz with Mint that it says is served by Alicia Silverstone. It states that "Silverstone, who follows an organic vegan diet, sips this nutritious elixir which personal chef and friend Lesa Carlson mixes for many of the star's private affairs."

Then it goes on to the recipe, in which is included:

2 tbsp honey (or more, to taste)

I realize that the inclusion of honey in a vegan diet is often debated, but what do you guys think of this? I consider myself vegan and I do not include honey in my diet, and I think that although this magazine is obviously not trying to define veganism, it could be a problem. What if an unknowing friend of mine saw this article, noticed that it basically dubbed this recipe vegan, and served me this drink at a party?
 

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I think it's good press for veganism, so bring it on


As for the party situation, I personally think that these occasions are about socializing and accept the fact that something non-vegan might slip in every once in a while, even if it's dubbed vegan. I still call myself vegan.

Besides, by being a happy, friendly veg*n at the party and not a total freak, you might even impress people and motivate them to read up on it / try it. You might end up doing more by being friendly rather than being a zealot.


(I mention though that I don't go to many parties and that I won't ever accept any form of meat.)
 

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Oatmeal, I second you.

I think the Buddha stumbled over this question. I think he was advocating a vegetarian diet, but he di´dn´t want to have zealots.

BTW St Paul also had this problem.
 

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i think that this could be a bit more complex than simply saying bring it on.

while i agree that it is really good press for veganism (calling veganism healthy, party friendly, and so on), the recipe should be accurate to "traditional" veganism which eschews honey. Otherwise, like saying "try these great vegetarian recipes" and two of them have fish or chicken in them, we would say "those aren't vegetarian" and how huge, long posting session about people who call themselves vegetarian and aren't, and how this is giving people the wrong idea about vegetarians, and increases the amount of pressure that non-veggies put on us: "well, i read in self magazine that vegetarians do eat fish; look at these recipes!"

So, here's the thing. I would probably write a nicely worded letter, very brief, to the magazine. First, i would praise them for including Alycia Silverstone, and her veganism, in the magazine, for showing how healthy and delicious (and easy) it can be. Then, i would write about how important it is to many vegans that *all* animals be included in our values, including animals that are insects. Then, state that for this reason, many vegans eschew honey. Next, i would provide an alternative for the honey in the drink. Finally, i would close with another thank you for including vegan recipes and encouragement to print more in the future.

And that's that.

I did the same thing with a yoga article that self did a few months ago. The woman who did the "inventing" of the program they were talking about and then modeled the poses was a fitness instructor with a *little* bit of yoga training. Her ideas were weird (and unnecessary, adding resistance bands to the class), and her form in the poses was really terrible.

So, i wrote a letter to the magazine in a similar form:

1. thanks for having yoga in your magazine--it is a great practice for body, mind, spirit.

2. it is nice to learn about new innovations that fitness people are bringing to the practice, but also important to honor the origins and correct form.

3. here is a photographic comparison of each posture, which your model (or instructor) did incorrectly, as well as a written description of allignment differences (ie, your errors).

4. in the future, it would be wise to include in your article, or at least for your model, an individual who is experienced at yoga and can help with allignment of the postures for your photographs and descriptions. I recommended that they contact me if they wish, or Yoga Journal, to ask for experieced teachers to help them in the future.

5. i informed them that i only bought that particular self magazine because of the inclusion of the yoga article, and that seeing more yoga related articles in the future would encourage me to purchase more of them, perhaps even a subscription, since the rest of their magazine was of good quality, and they have the desire to educate as well as inspire.

So, i got a reply and they were very kind abut it. It does two things--praises them for including something that i really like, makes corrections and suggestions, then praises and encourages them to continue in bringing in the things that you like.

you may even include in your letter suggestions for future vegan-related articles such as "veganism for your health" and "athlete vegans" and "vegan make up" or "best vegan hair care" or "my life as a vegan" or "interviews of celeb vegans" and so on--things that would really make you an exstatic subscriber.

Good luck!
 

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The saying "any publicity is good publicity" is quite false.

I think a letter is in order. And when I see Alicia next:



This new vegetarian restaurant I love started out selling cookies they called vegan... but they had honey in them. I called the owner to task on it, and he moved the cookies off the vegan dessert menu. We have to speak up. It does make a difference.
 

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I agree that it's a good thing to highlight meatless recipes in magazines and to show how easy and delicious they can be. I don't worry about honey in my bread or what-have-you, but I know that many vegans do and I wouldn't call anything with honey in it vegan. This is similar to the myth that fish is vegetarian and while I believe the magazine had good intentions, a polite letter to the editor is in order. Self magazine publishes a lot of letters from readers and not all of them are complimentary to the magazine. I think there's a good chance that if a handful of letters come in, they'll publish one of them.

If you want to email the editors, go here: http://www.self.com/site/contact/
 

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Yes, I agree that writing a letter could be in order, but please make it a nice one!!!


I also agree that "any publicity is good publicity" is untrue, the best example for that is veganism, hehe. But this was positive, although it might make seem veganism something exotic, practiced by some of the the rich and beautiful: "Silverstone, who follows an organic vegan diet, sips this nutritious elixir which personal chef and friend..."
 

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Devils advocate, chances are the recipe could have been modified to fit an omni audience. This happens more than you think. A more exotic sweetner like agave nectar could have been used but how many readers of Self would go out and find agave nectar? Mainstream magazine for mainstream people.

All in all, a nice letter to the editor is in order to point out that they implied honey is a vegan ingrediant when it really isn't.
 

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I sent them a very nice email thanking them for highlighting veganism and showing how delicious and healthy vegan food can be and then stated my concern over the use of honey as an igredient since most vegans do not consume honey.

Good point about the modification, monkeyandbunny. That hadn't even occurred to me, but it makes perfect sense.
 

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the modification can be basic: cane juice or raw cane sugar; (i love agave nectar/juice, but it's hard to find), but you can also use other fruit juices like a bit of apply juice, maple syrup, and things that are easy to get ahold of.

most people can get or have maple syrup around. This is probably the easiest honey replacer there is!

god, how i love agave nectar!
 

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I agree that a letter is the best way to go about this. A nice letter that is. I think people are more likely to listen when you nicely explain the facts rather than rant and rave about things. It seems that most people are not informed at all about veganism and the writer probably didn't even realize the mistake he/she made. It is unfourtante, but hopefully they can publish a correction in their next magazine.
 

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Zoebird, that was such an excellent post. I will be using that model when I write my letter to Self. It's always good to see veganism even discussed at all in such a mainstream mag, but it is annoying when they get it wrong. I think it is more important to get things straight than simply have them mentioned, though. When you think about it, it really isn't so difficult to understand that on a basic level veganism means no flesh, eggs, milk, honey. I mean, really, how hard is it?
 

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I was reading a fitness magazine the other day (was it Self? or Shape? .. can't remeber) but i was looking through it and got all excited that they offered a vegetarian/ vegan option in one of their meal plans ( it was a sandwich with roasted veggies & hummus) i wrote them a little note to thank them and to keep including these recipies for veg*s

it's good to see veg options getting more press
 
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