Vegan, Jane Austen student, Minimalist, Reader, Librarian

Monday, November 22, 2010

Eat to Feel Well

Like most people nowadays, I am on both Facebook and Twitter. And sometimes I read my friends’ updates with a little sadness as I see my former self. I say sadness because so many of their updates are about things that used to be common for me but are no longer true: they complain about how bad they are feeling physically. Many of my friends and acquaintances are a lot younger than me, some almost twenty years or so. They complain about insomnia, food poisoning (mistakenly calling it a 24 hour flu), migraine headaches, lots of colds, and just a general feeling of malaise and pain.

All of that used to be common to me. But since going vegan, all of that is a thing of the past. It may sound cliche or trite and I’m sure many people are tired of me saying it, but I will say it anyway. Because it’s true. At forty-two years old, I feel better than I did at twenty-two. Where I used to have insomnia almost nightly, I now sleep all night long unless my cat wakes me up. Where I used to have almost daily stomachaches, I no longer remember what that even feels like. Where I used to feel so full I couldn’t even move or it felt like my food wasn’t digesting at all, that feeling has disappeared. Even my seasonal allergies (the ones I could keep at bay with Sudafed) seem to have disappeared. Leg cramps? Nope, not anymore.

My new neighbor, a woman in her late seventies who seems to be in quite a bit of pain from constant arthritis (not to mention many other ailments including allergies), has begun questioning me closely (I would say she’s almost being nosy) about being vegan, why I’m vegan, & how I’m vegan. She was shocked to learn that I take no supplements (except a weekly B-12) and that I take no prescription drugs. She was also surprised that I went vegan for my health and not just for the animals. She also wrote down the name of the book by T. Colin Campbell, The China Study, that I mentioned to her was the turning point of my being serious about going vegan for life.

I think people just have to be at a certain point in their lives where they are tired of not feeling well. I was there and I wanted it to change so I did WITHOUT DRUGS. I hope those who don’t feel well will eventually make that connection that is so vital to well-being: what you eat affects how your body feels. All the time. It also affects how you age; many people find it hard to believe my age (one neighbor, where I used to live shrieked, “Oh, my God! Where are your wrinkles?!”). Best compliment ever.

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