My 55th birthday ended with a few dear friends googling “diabetic vegan dessert” and then creating a birthday menu to share together. After the spinach/zucchini/black bean enchiladas, green salad, and corn on the cob, out came the “goodness in a small sphere.” Instead of birthday cake, we had ground nuts, bits of dried fruit, and organic peanut butter rolled into balls and topped with unsweetened coconut for a touch of loveliness. Yummm!
Had this event happened two months ago, it would have looked like a standard American birthday menu with one small substitution: brownies for the typical cake. Diagnoses like diabetes have a way of re-setting our normals. It takes a little getting used to, but with the help of thoughtful friends the transitions become easier.
I get asked regularly why I’m making the switch to a plant-based diet if it is not what the American Diabetes Association promotes. My answer is found in the book, The China Study, by T Colin Campbell. I’ll write a future post about this, but essentially a plant-based (aka ‘vegan’) diet has startling salubrious effects on many chronic diseases, from diabetes to heart disease to cancer.
My ultimate goal is not to co-exist with diabetes, but to reverse it with diet and exercise and other lifestyle choices. This, of course, requires a more extreme approach than the standard ADA one-size-fits-all regimen. Yes, I am taking an oral med which helps my pancreas with its insulin production; I’m also tackling this challenge with my typical gusto and passion, seeing it as an adventure in learning what my body can do if I give it my best effort.