Welcome to my happy and healthy vegan family
– by Anja Cass

… But it hasn’t always been that way!

In July of 2012 my husband, son and I returned from a 3 month European vacation, overweight and drained of energy.

Having reached my highest weight ever at 83.2kg, I decided it was time to take control of my constant yo-yoing weight.

Around the same time I also had health issues which took me to the doctor… and ultimately it was found that I had a heart aneurysm known as a “bulging ascending aorta”.

What the? I’m only 38, how can I have heart issues?

The reality of eating a crappy diet set in – Aneurysms result from weakening of the wall of an artery and can be fatal!

I started to research the internet and look at what options I had.

Low and behold, I found The China Study.

This changed my life in the best way ever!

Almost overnight I cut out all dairy, meat and eggs and started to eat a plant-based diet – I became… Vegan!

I started to lose weight (24 kilos/50 Pounds in 4 months), I had loads of energy and my blood tests showed that my bad cholesterol levels dropped BIG TIME! My doctor was happy and so was I 🙂

The hardest part of this was finding great recipes and foods that I could make taste great.

Always loving a challenge, I played in the kitchen every day, went to health food stores and learnt about new ingredients, and watched a lot of youtube to learn from others.

Since then I’ve been cooking up a storm for family and friends and always get asked for my recipes… so here they are 🙂

About a  month later I was still trying to convince my husband to cut out the animal products (he was still having meat when we went out for dinner and milk in his coffee and on his cereal).

Having suffered from severe allergies since being a teenager, my husband had tried numerous medicines and injections from France etc to get rid of them. Nothing helped! So I suggested he cut out all dairy for a week or two. And he finally agreed. Within a week his allergies were gone! Over 20 years worth of allergies – gone! The power of plant-based foods is AMAZING!!!

This was enough proof to make my husband go 100% vegan too.

But our 9 year was not so sure. I still made my son a meat based meal from time to time and he would eat a bit of cheese here and there. But overall, I offered him 95% plant-based meals – and he loved them!

The hard part was when he would go to his grandparent’s house and they would load him up on junk and animal products. About 6 months later, our son watched a documentary about animal cruelty and the way they are slaughtered for food. At the same time there was a tv campaign to stop eating animals. One day he just came up to us and cried… he said “I don’t want to eat piggies anymore”. He made a pledge online that day that he would not eat any more meat. It took about 2 months longer and he decided he didn’t want “cow puss” either – his way of saying no more dairy.

So that is how my family and I all became vegan.

Yours in cooking and eating,

Anja Cass
www.cookingwithplants.com