Club & Greek

‘Squash’ Those Carnivorous Thoughts

MAVS Educates Students on Vegetarianism

VegetarianismMonmouth Area Vegetarian Society (MAVS) held an event about vegetarianism in Magill Commons on Sunday, April 1. The main speaker at the event Lauren Forney of Center Your Health, is a holistic health coach and registered yoga teacher, her mission was to educate people about becoming a vegetarian and the other options in the world of food.

Forney is also very involved in MAVS and she has been a vegetarian for over a decade now. She spoke about the benefits of being a vegetarian and the evolving process behind it. As a child, she always questioned why we eat meat and this is one of the main reasons behind her transformation.

Some of the benefits she listed were the possibility of losing weight, lower risk of diabetes and heart disease, increased flexibility and energy, and the ability to get more nutrition.

Forney is very passionate about healthy eating and enjoys supporting others learn to make consistently wise choices regarding nutrition, lifestyle, and overall well-being. She strives to lead by her own example rather than talk about everything she is doing. “The results speak for themselves. Then everyone wants to know what you’re doing so they can try it,” said Forney.

The event brought in about 25 people, including students and local MAVS members. Harris was pleased with the turnout because this was a specific event as opposed to the more broad ones that they sometimes host.

So far, MAVS has held eight different events, about one each month. There are two upcoming events with no scheduled dates yet. One of them is featuring a speaker named Dan Farella who is a survivalist. The other planned event is learning about and doing yoga on the beach.

For the vegetarian college students, Forney recommends the book Dorm Room Diet by Daphne Oz. “It is a great read. It focuses on helping college students make informed choices about their eating habits,” said Forney.

Forney also distributed a Vegetarian starter kit which includes all of the information one should know if they are interested in becoming a vegetarian. Along with that is an informational packet listing benefits of preparing your own food, benefits of and reasons to go vegetarian.

Mary Harris, public relations professor at the University, is the director of MAVS. According to their Facebook page, MAVS is a non-profit, non-sectarian educational organization that is open to the University community and outside community.

Their mission is to provide educational resources for informing the public about the advantages of a vegetarian diet and an opportunity for enriched understanding, mutual support, and shared fellowship for practicing vegetarians.

MAVS also provides an opportunity for interested not-yet-vegetarians to learn first-hand about the delights of good vegetarian cooking and to get to know and interact with experienced vegetarians.

All of the MAVS events are free and open to the public. Harris spread the word for this event by e-mail, flyers on campus, through their Facebook group, and through word of mouth.

There is also a vegan potluck which is featured at every MAVS event. The potluck serves as an educational component to the event. Each person is encouraged to bring their own recipe of a strictly vegan dish with an index card listing all the ingredients. Some of the foods that were featured were lite organic popcorn, guacamole, salsa and blue organic corn chips, vegan carrot cake, vegan vanilla almond silk cake, and vegan chocolate chip muffins.

Veronica Yurowski, junior and public relations major, helped Harris with the promotion and event planning for MAVS. “More and more students are attending. We are trying to become a student organization and not just a community one,” said Yurowski.