Wednesday, May 9, 2012


As most people know Facebook has been a great learning tool for connecting to some great sources that fit your lifestyle.  Earthetarian is a Facebook page that has been gaining a significant amount of members since it began and there is a reason why!  Organic recipes, news and fun facts are offered on this page that can help reshape your eating habits one day at a time (good for us slow learners!).  Because I know Lisa, the owner of this page, I tracked her down between her three jobs, hiking excursions, food shopping trips and basically jam-packed life to answer some questions for some of us who are just learning how to cook- let alone go 100% natural.

What inspired you to start your Earthetarian page?

A year ago, the name Monsanto or the words GMO, BPA and organic meant nothing to me. I recently started delving deeper into research on the food industry's goods and evils in hopes of learning why America and the world has become so reliant on fast food and unhealthy eating and living. I had seen other food blogs and thought, what better way to reach out to the public than a personal food blog? This is where my inspiration was born.

I have a healthy love affair with cooking, eating, gardening and photography, so creating a food and gardening blog felt like a natural fit. My goal with Earthetarian is to inspire people to make a healthy lifestyle change and to sustain it. It's easy to do a weight loss program or diet, but people have a tendency to go right back to their comfort zone once the program is finished. I want to show people that being healthy is a lifestyle change that eventually becomes an incredibly fun and addictive habit. It doesn't have to be pulling teeth, and it doesn't have to be expensive. Buying locally and organically helps the local farmers and economy, and cooking and growing at home is healthy, rewarding, fun, and saves a lot of money! I am passionate about people and their well-being and I believe that positive energy spreads throughout the Universe so you have to start somewhere. If I can reach out to at least one person a day who is inspired by my blog and decides to make a positive lifestyle change, I will feel fulfilled. It's a start.

What are some things people can find on your page?

Lots of fun stuff! Knowing is half the battle, so I share lots of informational links with facts from legitimate sources so people can educate themselves and learn to think freely to make their own decisions. I am often shocked by the plethora of information I read every day, so I like to share that with others. I make it a point to do at least one post a day to keep it interactive. Some things you can find on my page include:

- Recipes with step-by-step photos, prep time, cook time and nutritional ingredients
- Photos of food and the entire creation process
- Video tutorials on how to make a recipe
- Gardening tips/information
- Health and wellness tips/information
- Features on friend's blogs or websites
- Food information, such as foods that give you energy, foods to avoid, foods that boost your sex drive (yes, it gets personal!), and much more!
- Questions to interact with my fans, such as "is buying organic important to you?" or "what is your signature dish?"
- Photography on: world travel, Oahu hiking, home gardening, local farms, farmer's markets, breakfast creations, appetizers, entrees and desserts
- Local farmers market and health food store locator information
- Where to find local cooking classes for free
- Environmental facts
- Did-you-knows (Ex INTERESTING FACT OF THE DAY: Hawaii relies on shipping lines to bring in goods from the mainland and other countries. If we ever had a disaster and our ties were cut off, each person on all Hawaiian Islands would be nine meals away from hunger, and 12 meals away from starvation. The Hawaii Government estimated that the Hawaiian Islands only have a seven-day food supply available. Scary thought. This is why it is so important to learn how to grow your own food and become more self-sustainable in addition to SUPPORTING YOUR LOCAL FARMERS instead of relying on the un-fresh food shipped in from the mainland. We need to take care of ourselves.)
- Good websites

What are some of your favorite recipes?

This is a tough one! I would say my top four favorites are:

- Home Made Pesto Sauce (I make this one a lot)
- Vegan Pad Thai Spinach Noodles with Tempeh
- Massaged Kale Salad with Feta Cheese & Pine Nuts
- Turkey Quinoa Chili

How hard is it to shop local and why is it important to you?

We are very lucky to live in Hawaii, where local foods and produce are readily available. There are multiple health food stores all over O'ahu and most partner with local farmers to sell their goods. Also, farmer's markets occur every weekend all over the island, including locations in Hawaii Kai, North Shore, Kailua, Aiea, Ala Moana and many more.

Shopping locally is extremely important to me because I know my money is going to a good cause. Buying locally is actually quite often cheaper than goods from the mainland because of shipping costs. People think buying locally is more expensive, but this is a general misnomer that I'd like to clear up right now. I recently stopped shopping at large corporate grocers such as Safeway because their produce is generally not organic nor is it fresh. The produce that they sell comes from farms on the mainland, where fruits and veggies are picked when green and ripen on the one - three week trip to get to our islands. Much of the produce is also laden with pesticide and chemical sprays. By the time it gets to our plate on the islands, half the nutrients are gone. I always do my best to shop locally because I know it is fresh - as in, possibly even picked from the vine that morning. Not only does it support our local farmers, it keeps our money locally, stimulating economic growth. 

Do you ever run into any difficulty while shopping?

I ask lots of questions about food when grocery shopping - perhaps I have never bought a certain item before or don't know how to cook it. Sometimes I simply want to know where it came from and what dish it would go well in. I have found that in some grocers, even the natural food stores, the employees are not knowledgeable about what they are selling. I think in the future it would be an excellent idea to train all grocery employees on information about the products and foods they are selling so they have a responsibility vested in the company and take an active interest in sharing that knowledge. 

Do you find it takes a lot of your time or is shopping locally something that is realistic for the average person?

Shopping locally is not time-consuming at all, and I genuinely believe that it is very realistic for the average person. Because of the convenient locations and frequency of farmers markets and health food stores such as Foodland Farms, Down To Earth, Umeke Market and Whole Foods, there should really be no excuses to shop any other way. It's all at our fingertips. We just need to care and see the positive impact of shopping locally. If you are on the fence about switching your purchasing habits to buying locally and/or organically, I highly recommend visiting and touring a local farm on your day off, such as Otsuji's Farm in Hawaii Kai, or Ma'o Farms in Wai'ana'e. Once you talk story with these farmers and tour the land to see the hard work they put in, and how passionate they are about making an honest living, it will change your life and from then on you will just follow your heart because it makes sense. The great thing about some of our local farms is that they partner with high schools and colleges to help students learn about agriculture, help them afford a college education, and graduate. It is heartwarming to see all the lives that are touched because of these programs highlighting Laulima and the A'ina (many hands and the land).

So you recently started to make videos, can we look forward to a blog in the future?

Absolutely! Because this is my very first blog, I wanted to go the safe route and make it a Facebook page because I enjoy the interaction and real-time. However, once I test the waters, I'd really like to expand into my own website, so yes, a blog is definitely in the works. :-)

In case none of this convinced you to go check out her page (Here is the link again) Maybe this will...

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