May 10, 2014 at 9:09 pm , by Nick Shell
3 years, 5 months.
Starting today, I’m inviting the social media universe to “AMA”… ask me anything regarding our plant-based lifestyle.
I grew up during a time when it was normal to put my faith in finding the cure for cancer and disease by mailing in yogurt lids, running in races, and wearing ribbons.
Fortunately, in the past couple of years as the number of vegans in America has more than doubled, another option has begun spreading- thanks to Netflix documentaries and social media.
Turns out, your dad is one of those people who is attempting to positively (not narcissistically) set the record straight for anyone with sincere, curious questions; making myself a human Guinea pig for the world to see.
People who are like me believe there already is a cure for these cancers and diseases…but that the cure comes in a very inconvenient format:
Prevention (and reversal) through an exclusively plant-based diet of simply fruits, vegetables, beans, grains, nuts, and seeds.
It makes me think of the clever quote by Albert Einstein:
“Intellectuals solve problems, geniuses prevent them.”
Obviously, I won’t live forever in this body and I don’t believe that a 100% plant-based diet makes me invincible. Still, I don’t want my future years with you to include me having diabetes or cancer, knowing there might be something I could have done to keep it from happening.
But I suppose until a person watches Forks Over Knives on Netflix, it’s difficult for them to see the simple scientific and historical connection between animal product consumption and disease.
For me, it’s common knowledge that dairy consumption is linked to allergy and sinus issues, overproduction of mucus, osteoporosis and breast cancer.
(This is TMI, but I stopped producing white or any colored mucus the weekend I became a vegan. It has only been clear and minimal since my conversion last April; not to mention, no sinus pressure or infections since then, whereas I previously had those issues for 22 years straight.)
And that as a vegan, by default, I consume less than 1% of my daily allowance of cholestrol for each day, because there’s not enough cholesterol in plants to register more than 0.99%.
I’ve checked a lot of nutritional labels over the past year, and have yet to find anything I eat (even “fatty” avocados, cashews, and almonds) that registers as more than “0%,” even though plant-based food do contain some cholestrol.
Granted, I personally understand the skepticism…
I’ve mentioned that just a few weeks before becoming a vegan, I made the statement, “Vegan are idiots!” Now here I am, having consumed no animal products in over a year.
Still breathing, full of energy, with no more allergy and sinus problems, with a weaker prescription for my glasses, and am overall healthier than I’ve ever been in my life.
To some, I am a walking contradiction. How can a person who eats no meat, dairy, eggs, or animal bi-products (marshmallows, pudding, candy containing artificial food dyes, etc.) get enough protein, fat, and vitamins?
It could be easy to assume, if nothing else, I’m secretly hungry all the time. Yet I’m not. When I’m hungry, I eat- and then I’m not hungry anymore.
Once I nixed animal products from my diet, I was forced to get the “living” nutrition from the unprocessed fruits, vegetables, beans, grains, nuts, and seeds that I was previously neglecting because I was instead consuming animal products and pseudo “healthy snacks” like yogurt, granola bars, and diet soda.
As a new wave vegan, who chooses a plant-based diet not necessarily because of animals’ rights but instead because of the obvious health benefits, I want to be a positive, inviting example of our family’s lifestyle.
What I want to do is start making myself more available and present, in real life and on social media, for curious people who have honest, sincere questions about how we live.
In the process, you will learn more about why our family lives the way we do. After all, you and Mommy are almost completely plant-based as well.
I wonder what people will ask me, now that they know that a friendly, mostly sane vegan is giving an open platform to ask questions about our plant-based lifestyle… I’m ready.