By Molly Patrick
Aug 1, 2020,
Carole grew up eating a vegetable-heavy diet without even realizing it. When she got married in her 20s, she began cooking more meat and dairy. After 30 years, she was in chronic pain from inflammation. She had thyroid, liver, and cholesterol problems, and had been diagnosed with type 2 diabetes along with diverticulitis.
When a friend suggested she try eating Whole Food Plant Based, Carole was skeptical. But, she gave it a shot and committed to one month. At the end of the month, she felt great and her labs came back much improved. After three months, she knew that plants had changed her life.
Here’s a little about Carole in her own words before you watch the video:
I’m the middle daughter of a career Marine, and we were always moving. When it came to food, we ate meat three, maybe four times a week. Certainly not every meal. Both my parents were from the northeastern part of the US, so some meals were tradition: Boston Baked Beans and hot dogs with coleslaw and B & M brown bread on Saturday nights; a roast or whole chicken for Sunday evening dinner and Cream of Wheat for breakfast. Momma didn’t know how to fry so everything was baked.
Marrying my southern born and bred sweetheart changed my world in more ways than I can count. While I grew up traversing the United States as a military brat (an endearing term), he was born and raised in the small, southern, Florida county with a true southern mom, seven sisters and five brothers. After our first four nights, post-wedding, of meatless meals, he asked if I knew how to cook meat. To which I replied, “Why, of course. We’ll have a roast on Sunday.” The once a week meat dinners didn’t last long as I quickly adapted to his meat-heavy way of eating. After 27 years of marriage, I had become, literally, twice the woman I was when I married him.
Fast forward to 2018 when many health issues plagued me. My bestie and CFDG cheerleader would quietly mention diet and how changing mine might help. Meanwhile, all my lab numbers were going in the wrong direction, and I knew I had to make a change before I became a walking pharmacy. I decided to give CFDG Meal Plans a try for ONE month to prove to her that my ill health was NOT, in any way, the result of my diet. My health was due to an auto-immune disease (I have Grave’s) and not diet.
Was I ever wrong! Not only was I eating my words, I was now eating the best food I have ever eaten in my whole life. AND even better…I was making it myself! My doctor (in Jan 2018) wanted to start me on cholesterol medication, but I begged him to give me one month to “fix” it with diet. He dryly said to me, “You may not have one month.” I dove in, feet first and haven’t looked back.
When I grocery shop, my cart is filled with colorful, vibrant veggies and fruits. That is my new FARMacy! The cashier usually responds with, “Wow, eating healthy is really expensive.” To which I reply, “But have you seen the high cost of not eating healthy?” I’m extremely excited that many, many more friends and now my older sister have joined in on this plant-based way of life. Sometimes, as the only plant-based person in my own home, I feel all alone and want to give up on this journey. But then I remember that this is for me. My health is better, I feel better, I have more energy, and life is better. All the batching? Worth it. Giving up meat and a heavy gut? Worth it. Being happy and finding new joy in life? Priceless.
Closed captioning available.
Check out our weekly Plant Fueled Meal Plans to see what all the hype is about.
- 2 cups corn kernels, cut fresh off the cob (directions below) (270 g)
- 1 cup green zucchini, chopped (135 g)
- 1 cup yellow, orange, or red bell pepper, chopped (135 g)
- 2 tablespoons jalapeno, stem and seeds removed, then minced (20 g)
- 1 tablespoon garlic, minced (10 g)
- 2 teaspoons dried basil
- ⅛ teaspoon cayenne powder (omit if you don't like spicy)
- 1 cup canned lima beans, drained and rinsed (may be called butter beans) (200 g)
- 1 cup cucumber, unpeeled, seeds removed, chopped (145 g)
- 1 cup cherry or grape tomatoes, halved or quartered, your choice (170 g)
- ¼ cup green onion, thinly sliced (green and white parts / discard root end) (25 g)
- 1 cup sweet white onion, chopped (130 g)
- ¼ cup parsley, chopped (10 g)
- 2 tablespoons lime juice
- 1 tablespoon fresh dill, chopped
- ½ teaspoon salt
- ⅛ teaspoon black pepper (about 5 turns)
- First, you must shuck your corn (remove the husk and silk). Next, using a sharp knife, carefully cut the kernels off each cob and transfer them to a medium-sized bowl, along with any of the juice from the cobs that was released while cutting. To the same bowl, add the zucchini, bell pepper, jalapeno, garlic, basil and cayenne.
- To a separate smaller bowl, add the lima beans, cucumber, tomatoes and green onion.
- Heat a large skillet over medium heat for 2 minutes, then add the sweet onion and a pinch of salt and cook for about 3 minutes, until the onion begins to lightly brown. Add a little splash of water if the onion sticks to the skillet or looks dry.
- Transfer the first bowl of ingredients to the skillet (corn, zucchini, bell pepper, jalapeno, garlic, basil and cayenne) and cook for 5 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the zucchini begins to soften, but still has some crunch to it.
- Add the second bowl of ingredients to the skillet (beans, cucumber, tomatoes and green onion) and cook for an additional 3 minutes, stirring occasionally, until the tomatoes just begin to soften.
- Remove skillet from heat and add the parsley, lime juice, dill, salt and pepper. Gently stir until well combined. Serve warm or chilled, it's delicious either way.
Wishing you a happy week. May it be filled with making choices that support your beautiful body.