I’m Yvonne Smith and my journey with food and weight loss began over 35 years ago. Every diet involved some form of calorie restriction. Time and again, I was able to lose weight but eventually food deprivation and cravings would take over and I would binge my way back—always adding a few extra pounds. After 25 years of the yo-yo syndrome, I began to lose all hope of ever getting back to my desirable weight.
I also had several progressive health issues, which included severe abdominal pain and bouts of incontinence. I really began to get concerned when I started to get unpredictable attacks of aching arms followed with a loss of muscle strength. During that time, I would have spells where my legs would give out and I couldn’t walk. After various tests for multiple sclerosis, nothing could be diagnosed.
To add to my concerning health issues, I also suffered from fibrocystic breasts with one cyst as large as a golf ball. I dreaded mammograms, as each year there were always more lumps and I feared the results.
I was 55 and scared. My prognosis to live an active carefree lifestyle was not looking good.
In February of 2012, I watched Forks Over Knives and read The China Study. This information intrigued me to do a 30-day elimination of meat, dairy, eggs as well as no processed oil. At this point I knew eliminating meat, dairy and eggs would not be difficult as I had weaned myself off those before. My real challenge would be to give up oil. I was an advocate for “healthy” oils. The first month went easier than I expected it to so I continued for a second month and I’m so glad I did.
After suffering for 30 years, within two months, I was completely healed from fibrocystic breasts. I was in shock. This was a miracle! I had absolutely no lumps left. Not even a pea size one was left!
My food cravings subsided. I no longer have heartburn, eczema or hemorrhoids. I no longer suffer from incontinence. Although it took a little longer for my legs to stop giving out, I am now able to do spurts of jogging, take long walks, and enjoy my bicycle. There is no longer a threat of leg braces and I no longer require expensive custom made orthotics. I’m also delighted to be able to wear dress shoes again.
Note, even though I am in recovery with my weight and improved health that does not mean I’m on easy street. I find I still have challenges but my peaks and valleys are no longer extreme highs and lows. When food cravings hit I’m in control. I now have the ability and confidence to get through it. When I need to travel or go to a food event I no longer panic with “what am I going to eat”.
I find it’s important to keep learning, that keeps me on board and I respect my improved health. Also teaching keeps me anchored as I cannot teach what I don’t live. I no longer live in shame with my food. I’m always glad to share my experience and give hope to help others.
Because eliminating oil from my diet has been so profound to my improved health I favour and follow a no-oil lifestyle. I’m not the food police. What you choose to do is up to you.
What we eat makes such a significant difference to our health. Because I recovered from several health ailments, it has made me very passionate to pass on this message and thus the beginning of Journey to Healthy Eating was formed. I now teach whole food plant based classes and this website has been developed to help my students with their journey. You are welcome to explore this site. I hope you will find some of these resources helpful to your journey to improved health.