Last night Doug and I watched the documentary “Forks Over Knives”. I tell you the reason we did it though, we knew what they were going to say, but we needed inspiration because Doug and I are extremists and we need passion to achieve anything. Diet and lifestyle is a much argued subject and it gets confusing traversing all the information out there. Most of the time we just don’t want to think about it. Our ancestors just ate, can’t we too? There is also much discrepancy on what our ancestors ate! Meat was a rarity no matter what the Paleo movement tells us. It was seasonal, or small, or for rich people. And those rich people were sick and fat.
We knew this when we ordered bacon at a restaurant after being vegetarian, I for twenty-seven years, Doug for eight, and staunch vegans for two years. All our friends ate meat. They were fine. My friend that convinced us to eat meat died of cancer shortly after. I watch cancer come through my shop door almost daily. I can see illnesses. It is a somewhat rare clairvoyant gift that helps me be an effective herbalist. I see heart disease, circulatory problems, I see problems in me and Doug now. We need a change.
In the past two and a half years since we began eating meat we have both obtained a lovely array of issues. When we went vegan the first time Doug lost thirty-five pounds. We had just started our rigorous farmers market season (eight markets a week) and we felt great.
We had convinced ourselves that it is a natural process, that farm animals are to be eaten, that we kill animals when we clear farmland for vegetables, that my body needed meat and B12! Then I read the back of a bottle of kombucha. 20% of my daily B12. There are a lot of sources of B12. The meat and dairy industry make the guidelines that we all use for health, for our children’s health, for what we believe to be true. We listened, and then we saw for ourselves.
We were invited to go to a pig harvest and barbeque. I had my freezer full of heritage pork from a local farmer. We can do this! We chickened out. Turns out Doug and I would just sit there babbling like idiots, crying over the pig, or worse, try to wrestle him into our truck to kidnap. I must admit that Doug and I are lousy meat eaters. But we can’t blindly buy packaged, red tinted slabs of faceless meat either. I know what goes on in slaughterhouses, even the grass fed, sustainable, local, blah, blah, blah cows go there. Pretty horrific.
Anyways, I promise not to be preachy with the veganism, I wasn’t when we were before either. But I will keep you up to date on how we feel and what we are doing.
To start this process, Doug and I assessed how we feel. Doug has gained almost half of his weight back. He has chronic sinus and breathing issues since we began eating meat. His energy levels are nil, his umbilical hernia is getting worse, he has digestive issues again, his memory is his most concerning factor.
I have gained weight in my stomach, uneven, not necessarily noticeable to the vast majority, but I know it is either bloating or fat which is not supposed to be there. I have extensive swelling, my rings don’t fit, I get sharp pains in my chest, have breathing problems sometimes, and my knee and lower back often hurt. I also am having problems with my teeth. Doug and I both know that dairy leaches calcium from the bones but that cheese…ooh it calls to us. Loudly. My face is breaking out. I have circulatory issues, frequent blues, and even more frequent headaches. About 2-6 migraines a month.
This is a lot of really personal information but I know that it will only get worse if we do not wake up. We see folks all around us with dietary and lifestyle related illnesses, issues, things we just call “getting old”, but I ain’t going out like that. I still have a lot of life ahead of me and I want to keep my husband here too, both of us nice and healthy. So, if you are curious or want to join in, follow along each week and see how we are doing! Maybe it will inspire you to adopt a plant based diet as well. Or, we’ll all go out for bacon. We’ll see!
Use food as medicine. Check out the documentaries Forks Over Knives and Food Inc. It will change your life and your health.