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October 03, 1997 - Image 12

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The Michigan Daily, 1997-10-03

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12 - The Michigan Daily - Friday, October 3, 1997

FRIDAYFOCUS

Vegetarians

find

Ann

Arbor

a

tasty

treat

By Christine M. Paik Daily Staff Reporter

The eclectic community of Ann Arbor
boasts eclectic tastes, ranging from
steaming hot buffalo wings to zesty
chipatis.
But a core group of food lovers won't sink
their teeth into juicy hamburgers or shell out
a quick buck for a pepperoni pizza slice.
They munch to a different drummer.
When it comes to food, some University
students and Ann Arbor residents commit
only to green, leafy vegetables - with a dash
of citrusy fruit.
These die-hard vegetarians choose to pass
up meaty delights in order to uphold strong
beliefs on animal suffering and healthy bod-
ies.
These reasons even cause some vegetarians
to take their diets a step further and become
vegans, shunning all dairy and egg products.
Local Ann Arbor restaurants and stores
provide inspiration to vegetarians and vegans
alike, while University dining halls catch up
to the trend by creating award-winning vege-
tarian entrees.
Local veggie hotspots
Ann Arbor is packed with places that offer
vegetarian and vegan items.
Tom Hackett, owner of Afternoon Delight
Cafe, has offered numerous vegetarian dishes
in his cafeteria-style restaurant since its open-
ing 19 years ago.
"We opened up as more of a healthy food
restaurant, but people that eat here know that
we have a lot of vegetarian items," Hackett
said. "We have customers that have been
coming here essentially since we first
opened."
Rackham student Margaret Bloomfield was
eating a fruit bowl, yogurt and muffins at the
cafe located on East Liberty Street. She's been
a vegetarian for six years while working on
her Ph.D. in Ann Arbor.
"Ann Arbor has more vegetarian places
than a lot of other cities," Bloomfield said.
"It's a great place to be vegetarian. Most
menus will have some type of vegetarian
entree. I'm saying that in Ann Arbor, people
need to take advantage of variety out there."
Hackett said most vegetarian entrees are
original restaurant recipes, including the pop-
ular "Avocado Delight" and "Veggie Bake
Stuffed Potato."
Vegetarian customers number about 25 per-
cent of the Afternoon Delight Cafe's clien-
tele, he said.
"I think our customers are all very differ-
ent," Hackett said. "Some just don't like eat-
ing animals, and others do it for health rea-
sons. We have vegan items, but we don't fea-

ture them, but they're available if a customer
wants it."
Bloomfield explained that she doesn't hate
meat, but disagrees with the way meat is
processed.
"It's not that I don't like meat, nor is it the
killing of animals that bothers me,"
Bloomfield said. "It's the way in which the
processors of the meat produce and package
the meat. I don't like, the way the processors
deny the fact that the animal was bound up
and could barely breath."
Does she ever consider eating meat?
"I never buy or cook any raw meat, that's
out of the question," Bloomfield said. "I don't
even have the taste for it anymore. My body
won't digest it, and I'll get so sick. I will eat
fish, and very occasionally I'll eat chicken."
Seva, a local restaurant specializing in
strictly vegetarian and vegan cuisine, is
owned by a husband-and-wife team, Jeff and
Maren Jackson.
Maren Jackson said the restaurant's origi-
nal owner, Steve Bellock, formed Seva in
1973 after reading a book called "Diet for a
Small Planet" and becoming a vegetarian.
Jackson said Seva, located near Afternoon
Delight Cafe on East Liberty Street, gets
"extremely good business."
"Every year, the num-
ber of customers
increase," Jackson
said. "I'm guessing
that our customers are
50-50: We get a lot of
vegetarians, and then
some that come by just
because they think the.
food tastes good."
While there are many restaurants that serve
vegetarian dishes, Jackson said Seva is the
only restaurant that tabulates nutritional infor-
mation for each entree and does special order
vegan dishes.,
Bloomfield said she has learned to balance
her diet by calculating her daily nutrient
intake.
"If I missed something earlier in the day, I
can make up for it at dinner," Bloomfield said.
"I just make sure that I get my
four blocks - fruit, vegeta-
bles, carbohydrates and
dairy."
Bloomfield said she
has not become
healthier solely from
switching to veg-
gies.
"I did gain somea
weight in the very
b e g i n n i n g,"

Bloomfield said. "In the last year, I have lost
15 pounds but a lot of that was exercise as
well as vegetarianism. I don't think you could
lose weight (just) being a vegetarian."
A regular Seva customer and employee,
Drew Sehmieding has been a vegetarian for
seven years.
"I drink wheat grass juice every morning.
If, say sometimes, it's hard to find a place
with veggie entrees, I would rather sit and just
drink water than eat meat," said Sehmieding,
a junior at Washtenaw Community College.
Sehmieding sees a connection between
food and a person's mindset.
"It's like the saying, 'You are what you
eat,"' Sehmieding said. "I feel that what I eat
is going to show itself in my actions. If the
animal you eat is stressed, it will rel'ease hor-
mones and you will intake the stress," he said.
"In the same way, I don't want to eat an ani-
mal that is lazy or not in shape, because I feel
that I will intake that mentality."
Sehmieding said that being a vegetarian at
the young age of 15, he was the object of his
parents' worries.
"They told me to eat meat because they
thought I wasn't getting enough nutrition, so
I had to start cooking and learning things for
myself," Sehmieding said. "But I've learned
that I can substitute certain things for nutri-
ents that I'm not getting because I don't eat
meat."
Sehmieding said that today, he feels more
healthy since converting to a herbivore
lifestyle.
"My energy level has increased a lot since
I became a vegetarian," Sehmieding said. "I
feel like I have a much more clean body."
Home cookin'
Some local vegetarians
take charge of their diets
by creating their own
meals with natural
products from special-
ty stores.
Organic produce --
vegetable and fruits
grown without pesti-
cides and chemical
fertilizers - can be
found in Ann Arbor
stores such as the People's Food Co-
op and Whole Foods Market.
Set in the brick streets of
Kerrytown, the People's Food
Co-op has been providing a
full-line of natural foods for 26
years.

0
0

JOHN KRAFT/Daily
Kristina Weber, an employee of People's Food Co-op, arranges vegetables in the natural food gro-
cery store on Fourth Street.

cation manager, said organic produce is a bet-
ter way to go, due to the harmful chemicals
found on normal vegetables
"It looks like (from) the studies done on
farm workers who are exposed to these chem-
icals, that there is a high possibility that dif-
ferent pesticides can be harmful to you health,
in particular cancer," Barbour said.
Barbour said buying organic produce elim-
inates the need to scrub the surface.
"When foods are grown organically,
they're grown without chemical fertilizers or
pesticides," Barbour said. "You don't have to
worry about washing or skinning your fruits,
because there's nothing on them anyway."
Vegetarian Anne Remley, a longtime resi-
dent of Ann Arbor, said she has shopped at
the People's Food Co-op since its opening.
"I like the People's Food Co-op because of
the 'community market' feeling," Remley
said. "It's like family. It's small and pleas-
ant."
Remley shops for all her groceries here,
including grain products.
"The natural foods, even crackers and
bread, keep such a good flavor," Remley said.
"And I love to be able to get organic vegeta-
bles and fruit. I think they taste much better
than the types of produce you can get at a
regular grocery store.
"Eating organic vegetables make
me feel more healthy, and I know that
the chemicals that are usually
sprayed on them aren't there,"
Remley said. "I feel safer."
Whole Foods Market, a natural
foods chain, opened a store on East
Stadium Avenue in 1993.
Susan Bellinson, marketing director of
Whole Foods Market, said their organic foods
have not been sprayed with any synthetic
chemicals or grown using synthetic fertiliz-
ers.
"We have a set of quality standards that sets
us apart from the more conventional grocery
store," Bellinson said. "For example, we seek
out and support locally grown organic pro-
duce. Our flours and baked products are not
bleached or bromated. We do not sell foods
that are irradiated."
Bellinson said that while Whole Foods
Market does sell meat,
seafood and poultry, the
natural produce section is
always a popular area.
Ida Faye, a Social
Work graduate stu-
dent, shops at both the
People's Food Co-op and
Whole Foods Market. She is con-
cerned with the pesticides on commer-
cially grown fruits and vegetables, but her
reason for buying organic is simply the taste.
"I love to cook, and I just really think that
organic produce tastes much better and the
flavor comes out more," Faye said.
Faye said she trusts Whole Foods Market
for quality and selection. g
"(Whole Foods Market) has informative
tags that tell you where the vegetable was
grown, how to store the food, and stuff like
that," Faye said. "It's really helpful."
Bargain hunters beware: prices for organic
foods can exceed a student budget.
"Organic can be more expensive, and so it's
not always a possibility for everyone,"
Barbour said. "We have a chart in our pro-
duce area that lists the worst offenders, like
strawberries, so you can decide where to put
your dollars."
Remley said the differences in organic and
commercial prices do not bother her.
"The prices are a little higher than at large
commercial stores, but it's very little,"
Remley said. "I'd much rather be safe and
healthy."
Faye agrees and added that the variety at
Whole Foods Market makes up for the price.
"The selection and price are very good at
Whole Foods (Market)," Faye said. "There's
a large variety of fruits and vegetables, and

Eat smart as a
vegetarian
Five major nutrient groups are necessary
for a balanced diet:.carbohydrates, fats,
proteins, minerals and vitamins
N The main concern for vegetarians is get-
ting protein. Since they do not eat meat, it
is essential to combine complementary
foods to get enough protein.
Good non-meat sources for protein are
nuts, seeds, grains, legumes and vegeta-
bles.
People need the most vitamins and
minerals in their life between the ages of
18 and 24.
Good non-meat sources for vitamins and
minerals can be found in a variety of foods.
Vitamin (B2) can be found in fortified
soy milk and cereals.
M Vitamin D can be found in fortified grain
Iron fortified grain products, dried beans,
lentils and whole wheat.
Zinc can be found in wheat germ, dried
peas, beans, lentils, spinach, whole grains
and brown rice.
Source: University Health Services
"When I first got to Michigan, I was really
scared that there wouldn't be anything for me
to eat," Wolocko said. "But when I actually
saw what there was, I was really surprised that
they had such a variety. It made it a lot easier
for me to adjust.
"Some vegetarians don't like the dining
hall because there's not much to eat, but I usu-
ally don't think so," Wolocko said.
"Sometimes I don't care for the vegetarian
entrees they serve, but they always have
bagels and the vegetarian bar with pasta. For
me there's always something."
Paula Herzog, a nutritionist at the residence
halls dining services, said the University chefs
have created many nutritious vegetarian
meals in the last five years. Herzog said those
entrees must meet certain criteria.
"It has to be at least 10 grams of protein per
serving," Herzog said. "To substitute for pro-
tein, we use about 30 different kinds of beans,
some egg, cheeses, nuts and seeds, tahini
(ground-up sesame seeds), soy products like
tempeh, and tofu."
Steve Meyers, executive chef of the
Residence Hall Dining Services, said
although many changes have been imple-
mented to include more vegetarian dishes, the
residence halls dining service has had its fair
share of complaints.
"We actually have put a lot of effort into
responding to the complaints," Meyers said.
"We're receptive to all their concerns,
although some students don't think so.
Whatever they tell us, we want to hear it."
LSA first-year student Tovin Lapan, who
lives at East Quad, became a vegetarian after
his mother and brother converted.
Lapan, whose typical dinner at East Quad
"would be some fruit, pasta and a bagel," feels
the dining halls don't offer enough choices for
vegetarians.
Lapan said the vegetarian entrees aren't
nutritious enough.
"I mean, they always offer vegetarian alter-
natives for everything they serve; but just the
way it's made, it seems to always be fried and
fattening," Lapan said. "I think they could do
better with their fruit. A lot of times they look
old, like the bananas are brown."
Gary Marquardt, who specializes in vegetar-
ian cuisine and has won numerous national
awards for his dishes, has worked at East Quad
for six years. Marquardt said he is always open
to suggestions from East Quad residents.
"I usually go out in the serving line, and
when I recognize a vegetarian, I always tell
them, 'Let me knowwhat you think about
this,"' Marquardt said. "So I always try to get
to know the vegetarians in the hall."
RC first-year student Kelsey Cameron, who
lives in East Quad, became a vegetarian two
years ago.

0

0

PAUL TALANIAN/Daily
Art senior Carrie Wolocko jug-
gles vegetables and fruits with
her diet. She said the dining
hall provides students with an
ample variety of vegetarian
entrees.

0

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