Dr. Neal Barnard
Dr. T. Colin Campbell
Dr. Hans Diehl
Dr. Caldwell Esselstyn
Dr. John McDougall
Dr. Dean Ornish
Lani Muelrath, M.A.
Award-winning Lani Muelrath, M.A., C.G.F.I., C.P.B.N., F.N.S.—The Plant-Based Fitness Expert—(www.lanimuelrath.com), specializes in helping people who struggle with weight and energy levels transform their bodies—and their lives—without going hungry or grueling, excessive exercise. Lani is the fitness adviser for the Dr. John McDougall Health and Medical Center Discussion Boards, as well as a presenter and celebrity coach for PCRM’s 21-Day Vegan Kickstart and VegRun programs and the Complete Health Improvement Project (CHIP). In addition, she is the health and fitness expert for Vegan Mainstream and Plant-Based Fitness and Healthy Living Examiner at for Examiner.com.
Lani has been a guest lecturer in kinesiology at San Francisco State University and is an associate professor in kinesiology at Butte College. She has a master's degree and several teaching credentials in physical education, and holds multiple fitness certifications including fitness instructor from the American Council on Exercise, Yoga, and Pilates-based instruction from the PhysicalMind Institute. She is certified in plant-based nutrition through Cornell University and holds a Fitness Nutrition Specialist advanced credential from the National Academy of Sports Medicine.
Lani created and starred in her own CBS TV show, Lani's All-Heart Aerobics. She is recipient of the Golden Apple Award for Excellence in Instruction, and regularly speaks and writes about healthy living, plant-based nutrition, and fitness. She overcame her own lifetime struggle with weight more than 15 years ago when she lost 50 pounds, which she has maintained easily with the tools that she uses to coach others to be successful with in weight loss, body shaping, and health. Multiple resources for you for healthy fitness, weight loss, and plant-based nutrition are available at www.lanimuelrath.com.
See below for a free chapter from Lani's Fit Quickies book and a free sampler from The Plant-Based Blueprint.
- We now know that inflammation in the body is a precursor to disease. Inactivity and diet are the two primary contributors to inflammation in the body.
- Meat, dairy products, processed food, and dietary fats are the prime offenders when it comes to dietary inflammation. The PCRM dietary plan eliminates these right off the bat, kickstarting and enhancing your anti-inflammation strategies with a plant-based, low-fat diet.
- The other partner in the inflammation crime is inactivity. Reversal of this is easy: Start moving! Everything from walking to high-intensity exercise reduces inflammation. For details, see The Anti-Inflammatory Effects of High Intensity Exercise.
Lani’s Fat-Free 'Forks Over Knives'-Style Mushroom Gravy
Recently inspired to make a gravy that is easy to put together, not full of fat, or out of a packet, I came up with this little gem. Keep in mind I do not like to spend much time in kitchen prep. I'm working on that. But I do love to eat healthy, and eat well. That's why I'm working on cultivating some good kitchen attitude. And with fall a quick turn of the calendar page away, what better to create than a healthy, savory gravy to go with all those colorful starchy vegetables? I call it "Forks Over Knives" mushroom gravy as it covers all the bases: Plant based, low fat, no animal products. I just jazzed it up a bit by calling it "F.O.K." gravy instead of "plant-based, vegan, low-fat, no-animal-products, mushroom gravy." Does that work for you? OK, so it breaks my usual recipe rule of no more than five ingredients. This one’s worth it.
1/2 sweet onion, finely chopped
2 cups dried mushroom blend, soaked
5 cloves minced or pressed garlic
2 cups water (I used the water from the soaked mushrooms as part of this; you could also use veggie broth.)
1 tablespoon vegetarian bouillon concentrate (exclude if using veggie broth)
1 teaspoon Bragg's organic sprinkle herbs and spices seasoning
1 tablespoon nutritional yeast
1 tablespoon cooking wine (option)
1/4 cup nondairy milk (oat, rice, soy)
2 tablespoons flour
1) Put the dried mushrooms (I used Shiitake-ya gourmet blend from Costco) in a container and cover with hot water. Let it sit at least an hour. I just let it sit all day. Drain just before using.
2) Steam-fry chopped onions and garlic veggie broth until golden. Add the mushrooms, chopped* if you like, and cook a few more minutes.
3) Add 2 cups water, taking whatever came off the mushroom soak and adding either plain water or vegetable broth, nutritional yeast, herbs, and cooking wine. If using vegetable broth, you can eliminate the bouillon and vice versa.
4) Stir the flour and rice, oat, or soymilk to a smooth paste, then add to the pan with the rest of the ingredients and keep stirring over low heat as it thickens.
5) Option to season with fresh ground pepper to serve
*Chopped: with the dried mushrooms, it is easy to break them up into bits before soaking, sparing you the chopping later.
A Word about the Mushrooms
You could also switch out fresh mushrooms for the dried, but something about the dried blend is particularly savory. Also, if it is too dense in mushrooms for you, just use fewer next time. Serve over potatoes, sweet potatoes, riced potatoes, whole grains, vegetable loaf, vegetables ... somebody stop me! Take a batch to the Thanksgiving table to share this year. After all, the other one on the table (warning, graphic in nature) is just blood and fat. Sorry kids. It's true. And F.O.K. Mushroom Gravy will leave you satisfied and feeling light without a monster calorie load.
FREE 21-Day Kickstart Gifts
Read Lani's column on Dr. McDougall's site >