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Journey To Healthy...Plant Based Eating

That moment when your niece sends you a video of yourself from several years ago and you watch in complete shock. Yesterday, my family was watching old videos and found this video of me leading praise and worship (still don’t know how that happened ), and there I was rocking back and forth looking swole! I tried blaming it on being an old VHS tape, but everyone else was normal sized. First of all, I don’t ever remember being this big! I’m convinced, I and those around me were suffering from Shallow Hal syndrome.

Fast forward to present day.

Since this video I’m several pounds lighter, and no longer eating meat.

Now, before you start thinking, “wow, this is amazing! What did you do?” Let me explain how I got from point A to point B. In 2012 I was diagnosed with diabetes. For several years I was able to successfully manage it with diet, but I didn’t take things as seriously as I should have. Fast forward to 2019, diagnosis of Graves’ disease which came with the first wave of weight loss, a significant amount. Not just wright loss, but fatigue, hair loss and a host of other things. This lasted well over a year.

You ever had a moment in your life where you questioned God? I was like bruh...really bruh!?! Yeah, I was 50 Cent in this piece...21 Questions. I thought for sure I had been tested enough.

2020 routine bloodwork came back a hot mess! A1C was through the damn roof. Now, here I was, several pounds lighter, doing better food wise and my A1C was the highest it’s ever been. I thought maybe it’s the Graves, but my levels were good. Nothing else was showing up so what was different? The only thing different in my life was stress.

Y’all, let me tell you, stress will kill you if you let it! After running additions tests, my doctor increased my meds, added meds (insert hard ass eye roll here) trying to get my numbers down. He then suggested considering a plant based diet and minimizing my stress. Now, I’d considered a plant based diet before. I even did a 30 day stint.

Anyone who knows me personally knows how much I get freaked out when it comes to my health, (anxiety plays a huge role!) So I decided, what the hell, let’s give this plant based thing a try. Y’all, this was no ease in thing. I jumped in the deep end, head first no life jacket. I quit eating meat, replaced all my go-to items with vegan replacements. I quit cold turkey and haven’t looked back!

Week one with increased meds, new meds and plant based eating, blood sugars were still running high (stress was too). I did shed a few pounds though. Forget to mention, I incorporated exercise. Week two I noticed a drop in my blood sugars. I hadn’t t seen readings this low in several months. I was also noticing the awful digestion issues were lessening as well. So I decided to stick with it.

How did I address the stress? I started telling the truth about certain things. Confronting things. I made the decision to remove certain people from my life. To not accept certain calls. Made myself unavailable. I went on a real life DND. There is still work to do in the space, but there has been progress.

Now back to plant based eating. I decided to change my relationship with food. Before going plant based, I was quite the carnivore. I was a meat with a side of meat kind of girl. Steak, chicken, oxtails, short ribs, hot links. You name it, I ate it! Please hear me, I didn’t stop eating meat because I don’t like meat...but I like living more than I like oxtails.

Let’s talk about what plant based eating is. According to the internet; A plant-based diet is a diet consisting mostly or entirely of foods derived from plants, including vegetables, grains, nuts, seeds, legumes and fruits, and with few or no animal products. A plant based-diet is not necessarily vegetarian.

Here’s a helpful visual.

Education - Admittedly, after learning my diabetes was out of control, I developed a very unhealthy relationship with food. Food for me had become the enemy. So in order to fix that, I decided to educate myself. Education is so important! Making such a huge lifestyle change, I wanted to make sure I had as much information as possible. This included lots of reading, research and an appointment with a nutritionist. I also purchased several cookbooks approved by the American Diabetes Association.

It’s been a few months since going plant based and I’ve never felt better. I will continue doing what I’m doing, and making improvements. I remind myself daily that I only get one body so I have to take care of it!

I’ll be posting a “What I Eat In A Day” video on my Youtube channel soon so stay tuned!

Links to Helpful Resources for Diabetes & Plant Based Eating:

American Diabetes Association

Beginner’s Guide To A Plant Based Diet

Until next well & be well 🦋

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