After eating we watched the first part of the DVD The Truth About Protein, Soy, and Fish. A lot of the information I already knew, but it still made me angry that there's so much resistance to what I consider to be life-saving nutritional and medical information. I plan to talk with McDougall on the Costa Rica trip about how I might get more directly involved in furthering his cause, especially now that he has a study funded to fight multiple sclerosis; one of Ziggy's best friends suffers from this disease.
Finally we had a webcast Q/A session. I asked how to best explain the program when most people I talk to are so resistant to the idea that starchy foods by themselves aren't fattening. He replied that I should point out that all successful civilizations throughout history have their foundation in starches: rice for the Asians, corn for Native Americans, potatoes for the Incas, etc. I also thanked McDougall for pointing out in his books and lectures that human breast milk is only 5% protein by calories, and is consumed at a time when a person is growing faster than they ever will in their lives, so it's really not necessary to get more calories from protein than that as a child or adult.
I was energized by this experience. It's very rare nowadays that I spend time with groups of health-conscious vegetarians, much less vegans. As I shift into the next phase of my life and career, I need to consider seriously refocusing on my values and finding ways I can incorporate my concern for health, animal welfare, and the environment into my social and working life.