Updated: Apr 25, 2021
Eating whole food, plant-based is like finding a magic pill. It works. When I began to eat this way I did so "cold turkey" (and literally ate no more turkey!) for self-preserving reasons. In short, I wanted to live disease-free, medication-free, and pain-free with sound mind for years and years to come. That is my why. It's not that I don't like animals. I do. But saving animals was not enough of a motivation for me to give up all the meat, fish, poultry, dairy, and eggs. And I'm guessing it's not enough motivation for most Americans.
Let's face it. We are a selfish lot. We are primarily concerned with ourselves and our families. If we are honest, we know that's true. So the "vegan is the compassionate thing for the animals and the planet" argument is, I think, lost on most people. But if I say to someone by eating a whole-food, plant-based diet you can prevent and reverse heart disease, type 2 diabetes and some cancers and often autoimmune disorders; you can control your weight without ever feeling hungry or deprived; you can look younger, have clearer skin, have more energy, sleep better, experience less pms, resolve infertility and avoid constipation, well, then I get their attention! And that's only a partial list of the benefits.
I personally have experienced many of these positive results. The biggest positive outcome for me was reversing my autoimmune disease - ulcerative colitis (UC). UC is a debilitating digestive disease and most people with it remain on medications for life or worse yet have disfiguring and life changing surgery. While it was not the reason I adopted a whole food, plant-based diet, I was literally stunned to find that I experienced a complete remission of symptoms within one month of eliminating ALL animal products from my diet. That was in 2008 and I have remained symptom free.
In addition, I now weigh what I wanted to weigh all my adult life since the age of 16 or 17. I don't even have to think about it. I eat whatever I want that is whole food and plant-based, am never hungry, love the taste of the food, and never feel deprived. No diet in the world ever did that for me or was one I could live on permanently. This way of eating has lowered my body weight set point, healed my disease, and is protecting me against a host of diseases and ailments that plague people as they age. I take no medications and do not visit doctors. My medication is whole plant foods. It's my magic pill and it can be yours too.