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1-Year as a Vegan | What I've Learned & How I've Changed



Below are the many benefits that I have personally experienced since changing my diet to plant-based. It is my prayer that you start your wellness journey. I hope you find the video and blog encouraging.


Dry Scalp

As long as I can remember, I have always had a very dry scalp, excessive dandruff and lots of itching. Since changing my diet, I no longer experience this. I can wear dark tops without a mountain of dandruff accompanying it.


Menstrual Cramps

Since starting my period at age 9, I have experienced debilitating cramps. I routinely have missed school or work due to the pain severity. This is no longer the case. I have a normal life. I no longer spend days each month in bed in pain and exhausted. This unexpected change happened once I eliminated animal products from my diet. Now, I cannot imagine going back to a painful life of heavy bleeding and cramping.


Healthy Food Cravings

I've always had a major sweet tooth. I even went to cooking school and became a pastry chef. Now, I no longer desire fatty, sugary foods. Eating healthy plant-based foods, I am satiated and can easily turn down unhealthy options.


Natural Weight-Loss

To date, I have lost 46 pounds without any effort. The pounds just fell off and have stayed off. I do not worry about regaining weight because I make healthy food choices. Prior to changing my diet, I have typically gone up and down the scale. I have never consistently lost weight over a span of a year in my lifetime. Though I did not initially change my diet to lose weight, I am happy with the "side-effect" of it.


Aches & Pains

From my late twenties into my thirties, I often experienced seemingly random body aches. I thought it was to be expected as I age. However, I have not experienced any body aches in the past year. I did not even realize at first. When your body begins healing itself and you experience how life should be each day, the thought of going back to anything other than pain-free is unpalatable. I am truly grateful being pain-free.


No More Naps!

I am naturally energized. I do not consume energy drinks or coffee. I have natural energy for the first time in my life. It is so freeing!


PCOS

I was diagnosed with PCOS when I was 23 years old. It was the primary factor in my very long, heavy and painful periods. My fibroids were the size of lemons and golf balls. My doctors encouraged me to have fibroid surgery so I could get some normalcy. Surgery scared me. I did not want to do it. ~6 months after eating a plant-based diet, I went to my regularly scheduled doctor appointment and saw how my fibroids shrunk dramatically. They were pea size and smaller. My doctor was blown away and happy for me. She encouraged me to stay on the path. I am anxious to see if they are completely gone. I'll provide an update when I get the results.


Hypothyroidism

I was diagnosed with hypothyroidism at 20. I have been taking thyroid medications daily since the diagnosis. For the past year, I have been off of the medications. My levels are normal. More importantly, I feel amazing!


Facial Hair

I produced very high amounts of testosterone. My levels averaged 350 ng/dL. A normal range for women is 15-70 ng/dL. I therefore produced a lot of chin hair. I hated it. It man me feel mannish. I had to pluck chin hair daily. Now, this is no longer the case. I get ~3 hairs on my chin now.


Skin

My skin is no longer dry and I no longer have hyper-pigmentation. Everything is even and free of acne.


Poop!

If I eat 3x per day, I poop 3x per day. There is no effort when eliminating and barely a smell.


Nails

After a lifetime of flimsy nails, my nails are strong now. It is a new experience that I am appreciating!


Ear Wax Buildup

As long as I can remember, I have had excessive ear wax. I did not know the root cause of it as I never went to a doctor for it. All I know is that I no longer have leaky, waxy ears.


Low Iron

At 20, I was told I have an iron deficiency and I needed to take an iron supplement. I was always freezing cold and tired. For the past year, I no longer needed the supplement.


Depression

Depression is a monster. It can take you places you would never expect. I have struggled for many years with depression. I am not claiming to be depression-free, however, I have not been nearly as low as I have been. I recognize when my depression is triggered and I am able to purposefully take steps to combat it.


Mental Clarity

I am focused in a new way and I show up fully present. I did not realize how mentally foggy I was until I became mentally clear. Even when my body is tired, I am still sharp.


Fuller Longer

When I eat, I am full for hours. Eating a plant-based diet, I am consuming a lot more fiber. Folks are always concerning themselves with getting enough protein. I haven't met an American yet that has protein deficiency. The real question we should all ask ourselves is: 1) Am I getting enough fiber? 2) Where is my fiber coming from?


Vegans can be fat and not so healthy

Just saying I am vegan does not mean I am eating healthy foods. There are many many food products available that do not contain animal products. That is why I prefer to say I am eating a whole-foods, plant- based diet. I eat fresh local produce as the bulk of my eating consumption. Yes, I do consume some processed vegan foods, but, it is not the basis of my diet.


Sick

I have not been sick in a year. I have always been a rather sickly person with a slew of allergies to boot. However, for the first time in my memory, I was not sick for an entire year. How amazing is that!


Conclusion

If all of the many benefits I personally experienced still does not motivate you to switch to a plant-based diet, at a minimum, consume far more fresh fruits and vegetables. Your body, mind and spirit will thank you!

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