Tuesday, 11 July 2017

What The Health!


Around 6 months ago I made the decision to go and see a gastroenterologist as I was sick and tired of the crippling stomach pains I'd get after eating most regular foods. It was making me miserable and gave me major anxiety that I've had to live with since I was 13 onwards. I've been to the doctors numerous times for blood tests and all kinds of examinations/scans but in the end they just send you away with leaflets, tell you it's allergies, this, that and the other, or it'll pass eventually, but it never did!

After lots of disappointment, I simply learnt to live with my stomach issues but it made me so anxious to go anywhere socially that involved food, as I was always dreading these awful stomach pains and the anxiety just seemed to intensify them. I started avoiding going out to most places as much as possible so that I could just be in the comfort of my own home! Those that know me probably have an idea that I've been feeling this way for a while and to others, it may come as a complete surprise, I can come across very confident yet this issue has been eating away at me on a daily basis for a long time. I don't think anyone knew how deep seeded this issue was for me, it was becoming a serious mental battle! I wish I'd have done something about it a long time ago as I am completely back to normal now (if not better) and feel the best I have ever felt!

In this programme, it shows that most doctors only get around 7 hours of nutrition and diet education a year. A YEAR! No wonder the majority don't have a clue about the huge benefits of eating a plant-based diet and how it can reverse so many medical issues for people. I really wanted to do this blog post to help others who may want to change their diets for health reasons however big or small, you never know how amazing you can feel until you try!

'70% OF DEATHS AND MORBIDITY ARE LARGELY LIFESTYLE RELATED & PREVENTABLE'
You may or may not have heard about this relatively new programme on Netflix called What The Health. It's being talked about by millions of people who have been completely moved by its findings. Now, this isn't something I'd typically watch on a day to day basis but when you can't sleep at 1 am, anything will suffice. I got about 10 minutes in and was absolutely floored by the information about the animal products that the majority of us eat on a day to day basis, I had absolutely no idea that we were eating all of these antibiotics and medications (they use over 450+ different ones in the livestock we eat to stop disease/infections/bacteria etc) due to consuming meat and dairy. 

Thankfully, I've never really been a huge meat eater and I'd usually go for the vegetarian or meat-free option when going out for dinner. The veins in chicken would always make me want to gag and red meat always seems to have gristly bits in it but that doesn't mean that I didn't occasionally eat it. When it came to dairy products like cheese and yoghurts, however, I was obsessed! Anything smothered in cheese (I blame Dutch genes) would go down a treat and I would happily wolf down a slab of brie with a pack of crackers, no problem. Although I was eating a 'relatively' healthy diet with loads of fruit and veg etc. my snacking and the occasional binge on a whole host of processed foods was letting me down big time.

'WITHIN MINUTES OF EATING DEAD MEAT BACTERIA, THE BODY GETS A BURST OF INFLAMMATION, STIFFENING OR PARALYZING THE ARTERIES'

After watching What The Health (what's in our animal products), Forks Over Knives (scientific programme showing results of eating animal products) and another called Earthlings (very disturbing animal abuse programme but it's sadly reality) it really hit home for me about what we actually put into our bodies. We've become a world where no one doubts anything, we take vaccinations into our veins and put food into our bodies with no questions asked whatsoever. We trust that nothing bad is being given to us yet we're very very wrong.

Most leading cancer, heart disease and diabetes associations are sponsored by the very companies that are making us ill! Cancer associations have been found to have recipes and advice to eating red meat as part of a healthy diet, yet it's considered a group 2 carcinogenic (plutonium and asbestos are group 1 carcinogens just to put it into perspective). Scary stuff, no? Yes, it is, however, I'm not telling you that to scare you, I'm telling you that so you now have a choice. Without knowing the dangers and facts about our food, we aren't given the choice to decide as we're none the wiser.

I haven't drank cows milk or eaten many dairy products for a while now so that was already something I'd changed but after watching these I'd immediately bagged up all the animal products I had left in the fridge and cupboards. The programme is so in depth about what is actually in our food (eggs, meat, fish, dairy etc) that I'm almost certain not one person could watch that and not want to change something about their diet. It just hits home that maybe our bodies are really not that happy on the inside and that they're just ticking time bombs waiting for a health issue to arise. Even if you suffer from any mental health issues like anxiety or depression, the hormones in these animal products really do affect them without you even realising it! Yet doctors just give us antidepressants to 'change our chemical balance' so we feel better, but what if the hormones in food were to blame in the first place?



'THERE IS A STRONG LINK BETWEEN DAIRY FOODS AND AUTOIMMUNE DISEASES'

At one point in the programme, it even shows a lady who suffered from thyroid cancer and declined medication and chemo to try a fully plant based diet and her thyroid cancer has disappeared! I've been eating a fully plant-based diet for just over a week now and have never felt better, my skin has improved, my hair and nails are stronger and growing quicker, my energy levels are sky high and guess what.. not one single ounce of stomach pain! If you've lived with any type of pain or discomfort for long you can imagine how AMAZING it feels to feel normal again! I'm absolutely certain that I'll never eat animal based food again (which is funny because two weeks ago I said I could never go vegan), plus the vegan substitutes I've tried so far are THAT good that you wouldn't ever know the difference anyway! It's opened my mind to being truly healthier and being a lot more mindful about what I'm really putting into my body.

I've already had a lot of people saying 'so you only eat nuts and salad now?' or 'where do you get your protein from though?' and that's exactly the same stereotype I used to give vegans but now I've researched and tried the different foods, my opinion is completely different. Plus we don't need to eat ANY animal based products to give us protein, this is completely scientifically explained and proven in the programme so if you're interested in that then watch it! The programme shows plenty of athletes such as an NFL player, body builder and Iron man competitors who live off a completely plant based diet and have no issue with 'protein' whatsoever! If anything, it's been enhancing their performance like never before! Even the likes of Venus Williams, Beyonce, Jay-Z and Ellen Degeneres are converted vegans!



'COUNTRIES WITH THE HIGHEST RATES OF DAIRY CONSUMPTION HAVE THE HIGHEST RATES OF OSTEOPOROSIS'

If this blog post inspired just one person to even think about their animal product intake for one second, then that would be amazing in itself! I didn't write this to preach or persuade anyone to change or do anything they don't want to do, but I do wish someone had educated me on these things a long time ago so that I could have felt healthier and eradicated any health issues. A few months ago I'd have laughed if you told me I'd be going vegan but now I can't imagine ever going back to how I was before. If you've read all this and watched the programmes but feel no different then that's absolutely fine, but if you feel a light bulb has finally come on for you to change something then I've done my bit.

'We live in a world where we get treated once we're sick, not taught how to prevent the sickness in the first place.'



WATCH EARTHLINGS (VIEWER DISCRETION ADVISED)

If you have any questions or want to recommend any good vegan products then please leave them in the comment box :)
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