Bethany’s Story playing at Whistler Library on March 18th with Speaker Sarah Uy

Earthsave Whistler and Whistler Public Library have partnered to bring the community the documentary Bethany’s Story on Wednesday, March 18th with speaker Sarah Uy, Whistler’s favourite Raw Food Chef.

Bethany’s Story is a documentary about the healing power of food. Bethany lived the life of a normal teenage girl before she became paralyzed by a bad reaction to medication and was told she would never walk again. The documentary covers her amazing recovery as she makes dramatic lifestyle changes.

Featuring interviews with leading nutrition experts and medical doctors, Bethany’s Story is a testament to the power of food as medicine, as well as the courage of a young girl to face an immense obstacle, overcome it and in the process help inspire all of us to make forward progress in our lives, whatever our challenge may be.

Earthsave Whistler is excited to welcome Sarah Uy as speaker after the movie. Sarah Uy is a Raw Food Chef who trained at the Living Light Culinary Arts Institute. She is also currently training with the Canadian School of Natural Nutrition to become a Registered Holistic Nutritionist. Sarah teaches raw food classes with the Whistler Community Services Society and has also hosted a number of popular raw food dinners in Whistler. A true expert in raw food, Sarah will be sharing her knowledge and answering questions after the movie.

Event details:

  • 7pm, Wednesday, March 18th, at Whistler Public Library
  • Admission is by donation (please arrive early as seats cannot be reserved in advance)
  • Trailer & website – http://www.sanaview.com/bethanys-story.aspx
  • Event co-sponsored by Earthsave Whistler and Whistler Public Library

Speciesism: The Movie – Feb 18th with speaker Kristine Leise

captureSpeciesism: The Movie is an eye opening and thought provoking documentary that questions our preconceived ideas about animals, and whether being human is good enough reason for human animals to have greater moral rights than non-human animals.  Earthsave Whistler and Whistler Public Library have partnered to bring you Speciesism: The Movie on Wednesday, February 18th with speaker Kristine Leise, Manager of Raven’s Nest on Whistler Mountain.

“BRILLIANT AND COMPELLING” – Michael Shermer, Scientific American and Skeptic

“TREMENDOUSLY ENTERTAINING” – The Huffington Post

Modern farms are struggling to keep a secret. Most of the animals used for food are raised in giant, bizarre “factory farms,” hidden deep in remote areas of the countryside. Speciesism: The Movie director Mark Devries set out to investigate.  The documentary takes viewers on a sometimes funny, sometimes frightening adventure, crawling through the bushes that hide these factories, flying in airplanes above their toxic “manure lagoons,” and coming face-to-face with their owners.

But this is just the beginning. In 1975, a young writer published a book arguing that no justifications exist for considering humans more important than members of other species.  It slowly began to gain attention. Today, a quickly growing number of prominent individuals and political activists are adopting its conclusions. They have termed the assumption of human superiority “speciesism”. And, as a result, they rank these animal factories among the greatest evils in our history. Speciesism: The Movie brings viewers face-to-face with the leaders of this developing movement, and, for the first time ever on film, fully examines the purpose of what they are setting out to do.

We are excited to welcome Kristine Leise as speaker after the movie. Kristine Leise is the manager at Whistler Blackcomb’s new, on-mountain vegetarian restaurant, Raven’s Nest and a personal friend. She is a truly compassionate, warm and caring person and a passionate animal lover.

From a long journey as a pescetarian on and off, to vegetarian for nearly 10 years, finally in Whistler she found her real calling – to practice veganism. As this journey was so long she recognized a lack of awareness in herself and society, and ever since she tries to use every opportunity to encourage people to begin to recognize our real connection to animals. Whether it’s a guest at Starbucks or Raven’s Nest, someone on the chair lift, or a good friend, she finds a way to pour a little bit of love into every relationship. A compassionate and uplifting speaker, Kristine will share her story and some personal thoughts on speciesism.

Event details:

  • 7pm, Wednesday, February 18th, at Whistler Public Library
  • Admission is by donation (please arrive early as seats cannot be reserved in advance)
  • Trailer & website – http://speciesismthemovie.com/
  • Event co-sponsored by Earthsave Whistler and Whistler Public Library

Events to help you kick start healthy eating for the new year!

captureWe are hosting 3 events in January to help you start off the year with healthy eating habits and kick start those New Year’s Resolutions.

We are screening the movie Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead 2 with nutritionist Nicole Belliveau RHN, hosting a vegan dine-out at Stonesedge Restaurant and hosting a plant-based potluck. See you there!

Stonesedge Vegan Dine-out:
7pm, Monday January 12th at Stonesedge Restaurant, Whistler
Please RSVP on the events page at facebook.com/earthsavewhistler
Diners choose their own vegan option from the menu and there will be a set dessert.

Fat, Sick & Nearly Dead 2 Movie Screening with Nutritionist Nicole Belliveau:
7pm, Wednesday January 21st, at Whistler Public Library
Admission is by donation (please arrive early as seats cannot be reserved in advance)
Trailer – http://www.rebootwithjoe.com/fat-sick-and-nearly-dead-2/
Event co-sponsored by Earthsave Whistler and Whistler Public Library

What began as the story of one man, is now a story about millions.

After the film “Fat, Sick & Nearly Dead” documented his 60 day juice fast, Joe Cross vowed never to go on camera again. Since then, more than 20 million people have seen the film and Joe realized there’s still a lot for him to learn about becoming healthy and staying that way. “Fat, Sick & Nearly Dead 2″ taps into the tsunami of positive change that’s sweeping the world when it comes to what we eat.

As Joe sets out to learn how to be healthy in an unhealthy world, he talks to a wide range of experts, follows up with folks from the first film, and connects with new people along the way. Each one helps Joe learn that healthy eating is only one aspect of living a healthy life. From stay-at-home moms to world-class surgeons to office workers in Kenya, it seems like everyone is trying to be healthier, yet struggling to do so.

While on the road, Joe experiences some ups and downs when it comes to managing his own weight. Joe’s food battles resemble those of the everyday people he meets on his journey. Mirroring Joe’s story is a series of testimonial videos submitted by people who saw the first film; their personal, intimate and often funny stories show that wanting to change is often easier than actually doing so.

Top cardiologist Dean Ornish catches Joe by surprise when he explains that community is one of the most powerful forces in shaping a person’s health. Joe finds out how true this really is when he catches up with Phil Staples, the truck-driver from the first film. Five years on, Phil is on his own journey with varying levels of support and is dealing with his own set of ups and downs. It’s Phil’s experience that shows Joe just how big of an impact community can have.

Through Joe’s journey and the lives of the people he meets, Joe shows us in Fat Sick & Nearly Dead 2 that most people really do have control over of their health, even if they never knew it was possible. And that the final decision about what to put in your mouth, is what Joe calls, “The last two feet of freedom.”

Registered Holistic Nutritionist, passionate foodie and Whistler local Nicole Belliveau will be answering questions after the movie.

Plant-based Potluck:
Wednesday, January 28th
Please bring a vegan dish to share.
Everyone welcome, regardless of dietary preferences or cooking ability.
Event details and RSVP on the events page at facebook.com/earthsavewhistler

Raven’s Nest on Whistler Mountain goes vegetarian for winter 2014!

Have you heard the news?  Raven’s Nest on Whistler Mountain at Whistler Blackcomb will have a vegetarian menu this year!  It will be managed by passionately plant-based local Kristine Leise, with support from WB Executive Chef Wolfgang Sterr.  We were so excited when we heard the news we nearly fell off our chairs.  Huge thank you to Kristine, Wolfgang and Whistler Blackcomb for making this happen.  We can’t wait to eat there!

Read more about it here:

Whistler Blackcomb – Raven’s Nest: Whistler Blackcomb’s All Vegetarian Restaurant

Whistler Question – Raven’s Nest Goes Green

Pique News Magazine – Raven’s Next

Raven's Nest on Whistler Mountain

Raven’s Nest on Whistler Mountain

How Compassion Can Help You Make Healthier Food Choices

Last night I was watching Fat Sick and Nearly Dead 2, which is a follow on from Joe Cross’ first movie about losing weight and getting healthy via juicing. The second movie primarily focuses on how the first movie changed people’s lives, but a secondary theme throughout the movie is the importance of support when making changes in our lives to be healthier.  They talked about how we can often find ourselves turning to food when we are stressed, sad or lonely and how, for a moment, food can give us some comfort.

Featured in the movie is Dr Dean Ornish, physician and president and founder of the non-profit Preventative Medicine Research Institute.  Ornish is a heart specialist and has written several books on heart disease and wellness.  I read his book, ‘Program for Reversing Heart Disease’ last year, with the aim of helping someone very dear to me.  What I didn’t know was how much this book would impact my own life.  I expected the book to be solely about food and exercise but Ornish also talks about how important it is to have a support system in your life, how important it is to take steps to manage stress and reduce loneliness.  These things not only help prevent us reaching to food for comfort but they actually have a very positive impact on our overall health.

The book struck a nerve with me and I recognised I had been neglecting those areas in my own life.  I took steps to learn more and make some changes, and I will be forever grateful to Dean Ornish for introducing me to these ideas.

One thing I learnt along the way is that mindfulness can be a great help when it comes to comfort eating.  When we eat because we feel unhappy, we are searching for something to make us feel better, to make the bad feeling go away.  But it only works temporarily and then we find ourselves eating again as the feeling is still there.  And so the comfort eating goes on.

But if we can stop ourselves for a second, be mindful, and ask ourselves, ‘what is the real reason I’m reaching for this food?’ we can address the underlying feelings.  Although it sounds intimidating at first, if we can allow ourselves to ‘feel’ and to give ourselves compassion for what we are feeling, we can begin to let go of that feeling.  We can then take constructive steps towards a positive solution, instead of reaching for the comfort food.

The same concept of mindfulness can be helpful when we are trying to change our diets, such as moving towards a plant-based diet.  We may feel overwhelmed and stressed with the changes we are trying to make.  But if we can take a step back for a second, recognise those feelings and allow ourselves to feel them, we can more clearly see a solution.

For example, we may feel stressed when we are eating a meal with friends or family who don’t eat in the same way as us.  We may tell ourselves it is just too hard and even give up on our healthy new way of eating.  But if we can be mindful we might realise that underneath our stress we are actually worried that we might not be accepted if we appear to be different.  We realise that we all have a basic need to be accepted and loved.  Once we’ve made this recognition we can give ourselves compassion and acknowledge that it can be difficult making changes and not to be too hard on ourselves, or others. Then we can think of positive solutions, such as having a conversation with our friends and family and asking them if they would be willing to accept us whatever our choices and assure them that we will still accept and love them whatever their choices.  We have allowed ourselves to feel the emotion, gained clarity on what it is we really need and then found a positive solution.

So many of us have a tendency to be hard on ourselves and beat ourselves up when we don’t stick with our healthy way of eating, and we end up adding to the emotions we were trying to numb in the first place.  When we are able to mindfully recognise the underlying cause that motivated us to transgress, we realise that we just needed to take care of ourselves in some way, that we needed love, or rest, or companionship and we can forgive ourselves and give ourselves compassion, in the same way we would to a friend or loved one.

This can extend to other aspects of our lives as well.  Instead of looking back and judging ourselves for our choices, we can recognise and reflect on the emotional need we at that time that caused us to act in the way we did. Perhaps we didn’t go about meeting our need in the best way, but we can forgive ourselves by being compassionate of our motivations.

There was another part of the movie that struck me how compassion can help us make healthier choices, but this time in an indirect way.  At one part in the movie Joe was looking at a long display of pastries.  A wellness expert was talking to him about how we do our best to avoid everything in the display until we get to the end, and then we are so happy with having ‘been good’ and managing to avoid everything that we end up buying something to reward ourselves!

As I was looking at the pastries I thought, ‘well that would be easy for me, because nothing is vegan anyway’.  It got me thinking about how having compassion for animals actually helps us to eat more healthily.  When we can be mindful of the suffering of animals in the food system, we no longer see meat, dairy, eggs as ‘food’, rather as the suffering they represent.  It then becomes easy to walk past these foods or ignore them on a menu because all we see is animal suffering and we do not want to contribute to it.

Compassion and kindness are so important when it comes to our food choices.  Behind each bite is a complex system which involves much suffering of animals and people.  If we can be mindful before making our food choices we can have a significant, positive effect on animals, the environment, other people and ourselves.  We can support a food system that is peaceful, just and healthy.  We can contribute to a cleaner, kinder world and a healthier, happier future for ourselves and our families.

Next time you reach for that comfort food, pause for a moment.  Ask yourself what it is you really need, listen to what’s in your heart and give yourself, and others, some love and kindness.

Hayley

For further reading I recommend:

  • Creating True Peace by Thich Nhat Hanh
  • Nonviolent Communication by Marshall Rosenberg
  • Program for Reversing Heart Disease by Dean Ornish

‘Cowspiracy: The Sustainability Secret’ showing at Whistler Library on Thurs, Nov 6 with speakers Ken Melamed, Claire Ruddy & Hayley Ingman

Cowspiracy: The Sustainability Secret exposes the number one threat to our planet and investigates why none of the major environmental organizations want to talk about it. This humorous and informative documentary has been getting much attention since it premiered and has been dubbed the movie every environmentalist needs to see. There will be a Q&A after the movie with Green Party Candidate and ex Whistler Mayor, Ken Melamed, AWARE Executive Director, Claire Ruddy and Earthsave Whistler Co-Founder, Hayley Ingman.

Watch the trailer at cowspiracy.com

Cowspiracy: The Sustainability Secret

Cowspiracy: The Sustainability Secret is a ground breaking feature-length environmental documentary following intrepid filmmaker Kip Andersen as he uncovers the most destructive industry facing the planet today – and investigates why the world’s leading environmental organizations are too afraid to talk about it.

Animal agriculture is the leading cause of deforestation, water consumption and pollution, is responsible for more greenhouse gases than the transportation industry, and is a primary driver of rainforest destruction, species extinction, habitat loss, topsoil erosion, ocean “dead zones,” and virtually every other environmental ill. Yet it goes on, almost entirely unchallenged.

As Andersen approaches leaders in the environmental movement, he increasingly uncovers what appears to be an intentional refusal to discuss the issue of animal agriculture, while industry whistleblowers and watchdogs warn him of the risks to his freedom and even his life if he dares to persist.

As eye-opening as Blackfish and as inspiring as An Inconvenient Truth, this shocking yet humorous documentary reveals the absolutely devastating environmental impact large-scale factory farming has on our planet, and offers a path to global sustainability for a growing population.

There will be a panel of speakers leading the discussion after the movie – Green Party Candidate and ex-Whistler Mayor, Ken Melamed, AWARE Executive Director, Claire Ruddy and Earthsave Whistler Co-Founder, Hayley Ingman.

Ken Melamed

Ken is the candidate for the Green Party of Canada in the coming federal election. Twice elected mayor, three term councillor and past AWARE president, Ken has been instrumental in Whistler’s evolution as a global leader in mountain resort tourism and community sustainability planning.

Ken has served on a number of boards including Smart Growth BC, Fraser Basin Council, Tourism Whistler, Whistler Housing Authority, and the Whistler Chamber of Commerce.

In 2012, Ken received the Queen’s Jubilee Medal awarded to honour significant contributions and achievements by Canadians.

Claire Ruddy

Claire has studied and worked in the environmental sector since 1999. In the UK she has worked with businesses to reduce environmental impacts and since arriving in Whistler in 2006 she engaged heavily with Whistler’s environmental charity AWARE, where she now works with as Executive Director. While on a push to reduce her personal environmental footprint Claire decided to change her diet to become predominantly plant-based, with a ‘vegan at home’ regime. Three years on and there is no looking back.

Hayley Ingman

Hayley runs the Whistler chapter of Earthsave Canada, a registered charity helping people choose foods that benefit our health, the environment, and the lives of all animals. She has been enjoying a plant-based diet for the past 17 years and continues to learn about its benefits. She has a certificate in Plant-based Nutrition from Cornell University and a Raw Food Chef certification from Matthew Kenney Cuisine.

Event details:
7pm, Thursday November 6th, at Whistler Public Library
Admission is by donation (please arrive early as seats cannot be reserved in advance)
Trailer & website – http://cowspiracy.com/
Event co-sponsored by Earthsave Whistler and Whistler Public Library

Whistler’s First Ever Vegan BBQ Contest, August 31st, 2014

HUGE thank you to everyone for making Whistler’s first ever Vegan BBQ contest & Crafty by Nature event a great success and so much fun!

Three teams from Whistler competed to win the title of Whistler First Ever Vegan BBQ King or Queen with their vegan BBQ sliders. The Whistler Blackcomb Team, headed by Executive Chef Wolfgang Sterr, served a quinoa, bean and veggie burger, Team Four Seasons served a walnut and mushroom burger, with olive tapenade and cashew cheese, recipes created by chef Margaret Barnard, and Team Gardein, headed by Whistler local Kristine Leise, served Gardein’s Chick’n Sliders with a home-made pineapple salsa.

Extra special thanks to the awesome competitors and congratulations to Team Gardein on winning the contest! The sliders from all teams were so delicious and we can’t thank you all enough for coming out to this new event and putting so much effort into your burgers. We hope you enjoyed it as much as we did.

And a big thank you to Claire Ruddy and AWARE for organising Crafty by Nature! We are looking forward to next year’s event already.

Vegan BBQphoto 4 (4)photo 1 (2)  photo 2 (4)photo 5 (2)photo 3 (4)photo 1 (4)photo 3 (2)photo 5 (4)photo 1      photo 4   photo 5Vegan BBQ Contest in Whistler

Whistler’s first ever Vegan BBQ Contest with The Four Seasons, Whistler Blackcomb and Gardein – Sunday, Aug 31st

The Four Seasons, Whistler Blackcomb and Gardein battle it out this coming Sunday for your votes to be crowned Whistler’s First Vegan BBQ King or Queen! Sample their vegan sliders and be the judge of who should win this prestigious title.

Come on down to Rebagliati Park between 11am and 3pm (BBQ is noon to 2pm) this Sunday, August 31st, for the inaugural Crafty by Nature + Envirofest event. Join AWARE and partners for a day of nature crafts, live music, food and fun to celebrate our natural environment. Lots of fun for adults and kids alike.

More details here – http://awarewhistler.org/crafty-nature/

Vegan BBQ Contest in Whistler