I began the transition to veganism in middle school. I simply made the connection that "meat" equaled "dead animal", and I no longer wanted to be a part of that system. Luckily, my parents were supportive, but it was not easy. Over 20 years ago, you can imagine my plant-based food options in rural Ohio were not plentiful. One type of soy milk and one type of veggie burger - that is what I was working with. How times have changed!

It was during high school that my interest in nutrition was sparked. Chronic disease began to rear its ugly head in family members. Everything I read at the time reflected that idea that indeed 'you are what you eat,' and this idea fascinated me. It was during this time I realized there was a vast amount of misinformation regarding a vegetarian diet.

Enter the college years. I took a basic nutrition course as an elective and eventually ended up switching my major. I knew it would be a challenge to enter a field which was heavily influenced by animal agriculture interests; however, I felt having the credentials and knowledge to support by beliefs of a vegan diet would be invaluable, especially to the animals.

If you are struggling with weight or chronic disease, I can happily assist you in transitioning to a vegan diet. If you are already vegan and are just looking to clean up your diet, look no further - I have been in your shoes.

Through a vegan diet, I have seen people lose weight, eliminate medication use, reverse chronic conditions, as well as just regain overall 'joie de vivre.' I know that breaking years of habits involved with the Standard American Diet can be overwhelming and a challenge, but I also know that transition is worth every ounce of effort.

Not all health professionals are well-versed on a vegan diet. I especially see this as an issue for pregnant women and families raising vegan children. There are countless stories about doctors essentially ordering vegan women and parents to consume animals in order to ensure healthy pregnancies and proper growth in their children. This is absolutely false, and I will work with you to ensure optimal nutrition thru these important life cycles.

Can science say without a doubt that a whole foods vegan diet is the 'end all, be all' diet? No, it cannot; however, a vegan diet has shown to be the best diet for the animals and the planet - and those are reasons enough for me.