Let’s Get Serious

A Personal Story From Our Staff Member

Reacquainting ourselves with our doctors is a good place to begin the first issue of “Let’s Get Serious.” Many of you might immediately react by thinking, I’ve known my doctors for years so what are you talking about. It should be considered what we call, a new beginning, regardless of how long you have been under the care of your doctors or what stage of life you have achieved.

I was diagnosed with cancer in 1993 (Leukemia), I was 48 years old and recently remarried, four years before. I began contemplating the way I had treated my body for the past 48 years. I felt great physically, and felt complete emotionally. It turns out I got it wrong. Because I felt well physically, I didn’t change my lifestyle and let my doctors take care of the rest and they did their best. Daily medications and intensive Chemotherapy and surgeries and radiation kept things under control, until I began to explode inside. My Leukemia transformed into Large Cell Lymphoma, I developed lung cancer, then Bladder Cancer, a heart stent and pacemaker followed. I was told that I had three years to live and my doctors recommended that I have transplants, more Chemotherapy, and more surgeries. It was time to get serious!

I understood that I was the one responsible for my own lifestyle, past and present, not my doctors. My doctors did and still do a wonderful job in treatment and providing me with the physical means to enjoy life. Unfortunately, and as many physicians have told me, both young and old, Prevention is not a strong part of their curriculum. Like many of you, we got the following advice:

“We recommend diet and exercise.” That’s it.  What does this mean? I needed a new strategy. I saw a film recently, where the doctor gave his patient a prescription saying,”switch to a plant-based diet.” That was the treatment.

Ask your doctor for constructive critical guidance about what he or she means about diet change.  Reacquaint yourself. They might say more fruits and vegetables. Very true, but much more guidance is necessary. I was able to receive this guidance from Debbie Devore who specializes in plant-based cooking. Her research and advice really saved my life. I used a gradual approach to change my diet, which made my transition easier, many of my major health issues have been reversed and disappeared. Many of my daily medications have been eliminated and replaced with vegan options. I honestly have more energy at the age of 72 then I had ten years ago. Yes, Debbie Devore saved my life and helped me and many others create energetic longevity to longer living in a positive and healthy way.

When you are feeling good, that’s the time to develop your long-term strategy, just like when your job and your life are going well, that’s the time to save and think about the future, not when things are rough. We think about our children. We try to be a good example. If you can’t give up cheese, then don’t. Take one step at a time. Give up red meat and put your efforts into getting healthier gradually. Some people transition all at once. It  depends on you and what your situation calls for. In other words, if you want to reverse a life threatening ailment, 100% commitment is necessary. If you feel overwhelmed, at least do something good. Get serious about your health!

Here is an offer. We have permission from Kaiser Permanente, the health organization, to send you a copy of their study about plant-based diets and living longer. It is eye opening. Simply send us an email at debbie@almostvegancookingschool.com for a copy. If your physician wants a copy, we would be delighted to mail him or her a copy too. You can also read the study online.

This is a personal story from one of our staff members. He is not a physician so please don’t stop medications without reacquainting yourself with your own physician and having a discussion. His physicians laughed a little, until they witnessed his results. A few even said that maybe Debbie has something to offer. Living longer is a marathon, not a sprint. It does require our attention. On the other hand, you can also take the silver bullet approach, it’s up to you.

 

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