How long have you been a vegan? Well I was a vegetarian for 4 years and then transitioned to vegan. I have now been vegan 4 years as well and loving every minute of it.
What made you decide to embrace a plant-based diet? It started during my graduate school days when I started my first master’s degree. I had just moved to south Florida and I was starting to notice a change in my body that was hard to ignore. Basically, I was a little too “regular” if you know what I mean. So I took a visit to the doctor to have a check up and see what may be the problem. He asked me a question that I will never forget… “John, do you eat a lot of meat?” I responded, “Sure, but I don’t think it is out of the ordinary, look at how big I am.” The doctor told me that he wanted me to try not eating meat for 30 days and see how I felt after that 30 days. Well let’s just say that would not have been my first choice (I was a fan of a good philly cheessteak). I did figure that he was the doctor though so I would try it.
Even though the doctor suggested that I complete 30 days of this meat fast, I did not make it to the full 30 days. I noticed that only after 2 weeks of avoiding the meat that I had become completely regulate and that my stomach felt a million times better. At first I was torn between the fact that I loved meat so much and the fact that I had healed myself by avoiding meat. So I had to make a call, and my health won that battle. Even though I gave up the meat, I still did not give up the cheese, milk & eggs.
My career in health and fitness was taking a turn for the better and my research into the human body and nutrition made me look more and more at my own health. I was a vegetarian for 4 years before I finally realized that I was in an “unfaithful relationship” to my health and finally made the commitment to drop the dairy and eggs. Even though I had felt so much better I was shocked at how much growth my body and mind was able to show when I went all out vegan. I was so impressed at how well I felt, I wanted to share with the world.
What was the hardest food to move away from? I would have to say it was my cheese. I was a happy cheese eater ignoring the gar that 75% of all humans are lactose intolerant and that I was one of them. lol
Any advice to new vegans? Don't listen to the masses....listen to your body! Pay attention to the way your body reacts to every piece of food that you put into your mouth. Just like a finely tuned engine, your body will only run the best when it's full of premium fuel.
What are some of your favorite books/websites on veganism. I would have to say any book by Anil Phyo (she's a raw vegan chef). I also love and live by the The China Study as well as the The 80/10/10 Diet
Please share a recipe you enjoy. One of my favorite recipes is my Bad Ass Dates and Nanners
Slice 3 bananas and place in a bowl
6 dates (pitted)
Place dates in blender with 1/3 cup water and blend until smooth
Pour mixture over sliced bananas
Facebook: Bad Ass Vegan
You can email me at John@badassvegan.com