Wellness Wednesday Spotlight: Dementia, Aggression and High Blood Pressure

Today’s Wellness Wednesday Spotlight is from my friend and fellow activist, Heather Priddy.  Please read this amazing story about how a plant based diet helped heal her mom’s dementia-related aggression and high blood pressure.

 

Name: Heather Priddy and Barbara Priddy (Mom)

43009874_288274441781513_986696301632552960_n.jpg

“Mom and I were Vegan 3 years (I went vegan when I switched her diet). The health benefits were that she no longer had borderline diabetes. Her high blood pressure had been a problem that required medication for years but within no time her blood pressure was normal. She had actually almost entirely stopped eating before the switch. After 2 bites of her favorite foods she’d say she was full and refuse to eat, but after switching her to a Vegan diet her appetite returned and she’d even often want seconds.

The biggest change that I really didn’t expect was that her aggression associated with her dementia (sundowning and such) disappeared 100%! Before feeding her a plant based diet she would get very mean and aggressive any time, a few times a week. All episodes lasted anywhere between 1 and 3 hours and often happened when she started screaming in the middle of the night, including getting out of bed and throwing my tarantula’s cage on the floor and smashing it, biting, punching, kicking…….. ALL OF THAT WENT AWAY!!!

She went back to her sweet self. A few months in, I gave her 2 meals with chicken (she could only feed herself if it was hand held food) and her aggression came back.  I never gave her animal products again. After her death earlier this year, my sister told me that Mom was lucky I was her caregiver, because I switched her diet since “every time she ate eggs or meat she got aggressive again”. My sister watched Mom when I went to ComicCon and had decided since she was her daughter too she could feed her what her family was eating. The aggression came right back so she fed her a Vegan diet the rest of her stay!”

Do you have a Wellness Wednesday story about how a vegan diet impacted your life?!  Please contact me.  I would love to feature you!

How one cow changed the course of my life!

Do you ever get those wonderful memories that show up on Facebook?!  Although they can be kind of irritating sometimes, I love the one that showed up yesterday.  It was the memory of meeting Fatih, the cow that changed the course of my life!

IMG_2397.JPG

“How can a cow change your life?!” you may be asking yourself.  Well, before I tell you about Faith, let me give you a quick summary of my life at that moment.  At this point, I had lost my dog about a year prior and had become vegan because of the connection I had made (realizing that all animals felt pain, experienced fear, and wanted to live).  However, I hadn’t yet learned about the dairy industry and would still indulge in a giant pizza a few times a year.  I also knew that I loved animals, but until Faith, I had no idea what it felt like to love a cow!

My mom and I drove about an hour away to a beautiful animal sanctuary in Temecula, California.  The incredible owner, Jen, introduced us to all of the animals and told us a little about each of their stories.  She shared how and where they had been rescued from and also a bit more about the animal agriculture industry.  I was horrified and saddened by each of their stories, but also felt overjoyed when I saw how much they were loved and cared for at Sale Ranch Sanctuary.

After we met the horses, donkeys, goats, pigs and chickens, we came upon a giant cow and her best pig friend, Cherry.  I was so thrilled, and a little intimidated, to meet my first cow.  Jen invited us into the pasture with Fatih and encouraged us to get close to her.  I have to admit that I was hesitant to get near this enormous animal.  But as I did, I immediately felt comfortable and so incredibly happy.  Faith let me scratch her chin and then she kissed my face.  At this moment, I was in love!!!  I realized just then how similar Faith was to my big puppy who was at home.  She was incredibly docile and just wanted to be scratched.  I never wanted to leave the sanctuary and told my mom how badly I wanted my own cow rescue the entire drive home 🙂

IMG_2398

Like I said, the owner of Sale Ranch told us a bit about each of the animal’s stories and about the industry and I was shocked by Faith’s journey.  She was dumped at a sale lot along with her brother because they had “no value” to the industry.  Her brother didn’t survive but Faith was lucky enough to be rescued.  We also learned about the horrors of the dairy industry….

Quick Synopsis of the Dairy Industry:

Dairy cows are artificially inseminated on what the industry refers to as “rape racks.”  They will become pregnant for 9 months, just like a human, and when their baby is born he or she will be ripped away from their moms (they don’t want the baby calf drinking the milk intended for humans…).  The mom will bellow for days!  If the baby is a boy, he will most likely be killed for veal.  If it’s a female, she will have the same fate as her mother.  All dairy cows become “spent” at around 4-5 years and will be killed for beef.  For more information click here

images.jpeg

I had no idea that any of this torture existed and just like many, I thought that having cheese once in awhile was harmless.  The second I learned the truth and met Faith, I made the decision to never “cheat” with dairy again.  From that moment there would never again be any milk, cheese, yogurt, whey, cream cheese, ice cream, etc.  I was 100% vegan and was never looking back.

Faith also changed my life because I realized how badly we need to be fighting for these animals.  These sweet animals are being tortured and killed every day and for what???  At this point, I couldn’t be silent anymore.  I knew that I had to speak up.  I wasn’t quite sure how yet, but I wanted to scream it to the world……..  I suddenly realized my life’s purpose (this part of my life) was to be an animal activist.

My life had been given meaning and it was all because of meeting one magical cow!  I will truly be grateful for her and for this day for as long as I live.

***Have you ever had the opportunity to meet a cow in person?  Please comment below.  I would love to hear your story.

Why Do Vegans Always Talk About Being Vegan???

Hello everyone,

A few weeks ago I set up a little experiment on Facebook and asked my followers for the one question that they have for vegans.  Most of the questions were ones that I expected.  “Where do you get your protein?” “What supplements do you take?”  But one that I didn’t expect, and caught me a bit off guard, was …..“WHY DO VEGANS ALWAYS TALK ABOUT BEING VEGAN?”  

Here is a quick video with my answer.  I hope that you will take a few moments to watch it.

***Also, if you have a question for me, please make sure to leave it in the comments below.  I would love to hear from you. ❤

 

 

Why Being an Ethical Vegan Can Be the Worst Kind of Vegan

Hello all! I hope that you are having a wonderful day.  I want to warn everyone that the following blog isn’t like the others that I have posted.  However, I had to get this one out of my mind…that’s what blogs are for after all, right?!  Anyway, I hope that I don’t offend anyone and that this just gives you a little insight into who I really am.  Thank you for reading.

 

There are many different types of vegans and many different reasons why people choose this lifestyle.  Some do it for the animals, while others do it for health benefits.  Some do it because of the impending climate change while others do it to lose weight.  For me it was never a choice: I am an ethical vegan who does it to end the suffering of animals.  Over the last few months, I have thought about it and have realized that being an ethical vegan may just be the worst kind of vegan.

By this I don’t mean that ethical vegans are any less of vegans or that they are worse because they have chosen to omit meat because of ethics.  What I mean is that I think being an ethical vegan is the most difficult in terms of what we are able to endure with our own sensitivities, morals or emotions.

Let me give you an example.  While eating a meal with carnivorous family and friends, I look around on the plates and I don’t see meat next to their salads.  What I see is a voiceless animal who had been slaughtered and had his or her most precious life taken away so that my family and friends can enjoy the taste for a few seconds.  When they drink a glass of milk, truly believing that it will “do their body good”, I see a cow whose been artificially inseminated, has given birth and has had her child ripped away from her.  I hear her cries and can only imagine the pain she has endured.

Being an ethical vegan means that I cry during every animal documentary, after every Facebook video depicting the meat industry, and when non-vegans make bacon jokes.  It means that I spend sleepless nights trying to figure out how to save every animal in this world and feeling hopeless when realizing that there may never be an end to this inhumane treatment.  It means not wanting to be around others who eat animal products because you can no longer bare it.

Although I truly think that being an ethical vegan is difficult, I know that those of us who go by this title, were put on this planet right now for a reason.  Maybe it takes those of us with giant, empathetic, animal-loving hearts to help make a difference and I wouldn’t change it for the world.  However, on a day to day basis it can be hard to stomach (literally). 🙂

What do you think?  Do I have any other ethical vegans out there who feel the same way?  I would love to hear from you……