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  1. Dee
    February 28, 2018 @ 5:46 pm

    There is one thing that vegans tend to overlook and that is not everyone thrives on a vegan diet. I became a vegan because I hated the “production” of animals. I maintained the lifestyle for three years. Unfortunately, I’m also a Celiac sensitive to most grains (even those without gluten) and legumes so I was severely restricted from much of the vegan food choices.

    No matter how I tried to “dink” with the vegan diet or how much food I ate, I kept losing weight until I was down to 92 lbs. My hair began falling out in clumps and I hardly had energy to get through a day. I consulted all the nutritional information, followed all the suggestions put forth by the Forks Over Knives community, consulted a nutritionist, took supplements, and still continued to slowly decline. After having a day when all I could think about was eating a piece of meat, I realized the diet had become a religion and identity for me rather than a healthy lifestyle. My body was telling me what it needed and it wasn’t another plant.

    Do I wish veganism had worked for me? Sure I do, but it simply didn’t no matter how hard I tried. As many passionate vegans who have had to returned to eating meat due to declining health…some who have built their brands and fame on being vegan… it simply doesn’t work for everyone. (My friend was certified by T. Colin Campbell’s Plant-Based Nutrition program at Cornell. It was her brand and business. She and her family eventually had to reintroduce animal protein back into their diets due to declining health.) Maybe plant protein isn’t metabolized the same and through animal sources? Maybe there are macronutrients only available through meat? Maybe genetics? I don’t know. I do know I couldn’t survive any longer eating this way.

    Fortunately there are ethical ways to get meat/fish/seafood/eggs other than from feedlots and factory farms. I buy local and know the actual farmers. A year later my weight is finally back to normal, my hair grew back, the color came back to my face, my energy levels are so back, and I only take one supplement (Vitamin D3). If it works for you, I am delighted. But please think before shaming those who simply cannot maintain their health on this lifestyle no matter how much we wish otherwise.


  2. Caroline
    February 28, 2018 @ 5:53 pm

    I care too. Keep on keeping on, VEB. You are my kind of hero.


  3. Laurie (Lucy's mom)
    February 28, 2018 @ 6:59 pm

    Thank you, Victoria. I have followed a plant based diet (vegan) for four months now. I am so happy and relieved to have made the change in my diet. Your posts have contributed to releasing the switch within me that allowed me to make this change. So much pressure is placed upon us to remain carnivore. I thank you and everyone else who make it easier for those of us who wish to break through the negativity.


  4. Nat
    February 28, 2018 @ 7:40 pm

    You lost me somewhere between complaining about moving to Hawaii and FLUFFMUNCHKINS…….


  5. Liz
    February 28, 2018 @ 7:49 pm

    This is just heartbreaking. Keep banging your drum, VEB.


  6. Melanie
    February 28, 2018 @ 8:07 pm

    Thank you!


  7. Mindy
    February 28, 2018 @ 8:31 pm

    This post was exhausting to read, im sure it was more so to write. I agree with you, our love affair with meat and the way we get it is truly vile. I am however, a meat eater that believes in eating meat that has been ethically raised and ethically slaughtered. Its ok to eat meat, its not ok to torture animals or force them to live in substandard conditions for any reason — this absolutely is a grave problem facing our society today. Also, its ok to be broken, and to be sad that you cant fix everything. I feel the same way about gun culture and all the needless horrible deaths of innocents. I encourage you to relax in hawaii, be in the moment, try not to let the world crush you (its my number one priority everyday, it doesnt always happen). Love to you.


    • Melanie
      February 28, 2018 @ 9:51 pm

      How can slaughter be ethical? You are murdering and animal!


  8. Mrs. Hollingsworth
    February 28, 2018 @ 8:31 pm

    Lord, please help us……


  9. Vivienne
    February 28, 2018 @ 9:24 pm

    I’d really like practical advice on how to diminish our meat intake. But meat + veg + starch is beautifully simple & easy to do. How do I replace the meat with something veg but “meaty” and hearty enough to be the main course? We aren’t a pasta family at all. I’ve really struggled in going meatless even one day a week (usually breakfast) when I’d really like to go meatless 3-4 times a week. If any of VEB’s readers have any suggestions, I’d be very happy to read them.


    • Loran Watkins
      March 15, 2018 @ 2:07 pm

      Check out avantgardevegan on youtube. EASY and yummy!


  10. Laura Elizabeth
    February 28, 2018 @ 9:38 pm

    Thank you for putting this information out there. What they do to those cows is horrific. I don’t eat beef or pork or drink milk and very little cheese but now will cut that out for good, too. BTW Kansas wasn’t open to settlers until the mid 1850s.


  11. Franziska, Stephanie, Victoria and Isabelle Edwards
    March 1, 2018 @ 2:49 am

    Bless you, Victoria Elizabeth Barnes. I don’t know if your foster sweethearts worked their magic on you and not only was it suddenly clear that, in all the ways that matter, a kitten is a cow, or whether loving them suddenly made it impossible to be politically silent about things so monstrously important….whatever it was, I am filled with gratitude. I cried. We, my three daughters and I, are all cheering for you. You Did Good, deciding you cannot be silent. No matter what anyone says.
    And I know it wasn’t a new post, just new to me, and you have recovered from giving up your sweeties to other homes, but you will do it again. And I wanted to tell you, because you wondered so heartbrokenly if you had made any difference at all, that there is no doubt whatsoever in my mind: YES. Real differences don’t have to be measured in buildings named after you or magazine articles or bank accounts or cars or even , even…number of animals snatched from the jaws of death. A difference can be someone small who because of you grows up with confidence and a sense of being loved bottomlessly every day, and thus will forever more walk cheerfully in the world. A difference can also be giving someone who has never known anything good in a whole lifetime the feeling that for a short period, not every human is bad, and that they can relax their heart and lean into you and Not Fear. A difference is every moment of love you give an animal. How to measure that? No act of kindness, no matter how small, is ever wasted, said Aesop. Just because you can’t see it doesn’t mean it isn’t there.
    Keep Fighting the Good Fight, VEB.


  12. sarah
    March 1, 2018 @ 8:05 am

    Victoria, Your words on your baby kittens and how you understand and adore the special sweetness of each one really touched me. I know you have instilled in their new families that they are beyond special and need to have the gentlest, kindest and most loving care for their whole lives. You did good. In fact you did exactly what those little balls of fluff needed. Hopefully you will get another “set” to nuture and love.

    And I read with sadness the long and detailed words on the meat and dairy industry. I have a lot to think about.

    I admire your honesty and the way you that so clearly into words. I hope you find some solace in know you ARE the best kitty Mom in the world


  13. Waneta Dunn
    March 1, 2018 @ 8:55 am

    Victoria-You are such a good speaker and advocate. You should send your information over and over to Congress and anyone else that could stop this. The public needs to know. I’d never heard of all this and I’m 65! Thank you for this information. Wish I could share on social media.


  14. Suzanne
    March 1, 2018 @ 9:50 am

    I adopted a tiny girl kitty about five years ago. She is special needs- has chronic FHV-1. I’ve often thought about her original owners, and wished I could write to them. Lili is so sweet and spoiled that I know they had to have loved her so much. I wish I could tell them that she’s well-loved and continues to be spoiled rotten.


  15. Katy
    March 1, 2018 @ 10:23 am

    I swear to you…I am going vegan!!! You made a difference!


  16. Kat Croxton
    March 1, 2018 @ 10:53 am

    Please delete me from your what ever the hell this has become. Seriously. And as I wait for the confirmation, I shall wrap myself in my REINDEER HIDE and maybe I will even put on my BABY SEAL mittens. And snuggle with my dogs.
    Seeing what your kitchen turns out like is not worth it. And remember, you pumped Elvis full of toxic chemicals to prolong his life you your PLEASURE.


    • paula
      March 1, 2018 @ 2:51 pm

      “Delete” yourself by simply *unsubscribing*. Just like you chose to subscribe – you can unsubscribe.
      Less dramatic, but then you won’t have to “wait for your confirmation”.


    • cece
      March 1, 2018 @ 8:56 pm

      Yes, I have to say good bye also. This is not what I signed up for and you are way over the top.


  17. judy
    March 1, 2018 @ 11:25 am

    I agree with everything you say and here comes the but-I don’t like meat,when I do take a bite of meat the thought that I am chewing the flesh of an animal is unappetizing and I have to stop. We humans seem to divide into either a wolf mentality or a more evolved creature that must engage in critical thinking.
    The wolves will have slave labor,huge wealth sucking war machines,the right to own machine guns at the expense of child slaughter and government for greed by greed and without integrity,honor ,or noble purpose.
    money(note the stock market) is false-a piece of paper that never invented ,created, built, devised etc. It represents,poorly,the labor of us all- but is held in its trillions by the scheming self aggrandisement of those who will have the last coin on the table or die trying. We humans have been extant for millennia and seem doomed to a constant state of war that fights for peace?-love v war,mindless hatreds ,and generations that yearn for giving peace a chance. There are billions of children in the world abused and brutalized in every way that food animals are and we ignore their plight or feel baffled and impotent to change it. There are few products that we buy today that are not infused with human suffering and yet we accept it as intractable. The only way I can hope for change is to strive for better leaders, kinder laws.
    We are a worthy species,we can shine in this Universe on this magnificently beautiful World but we must take action in our millions. We the People can prevail-Our kindness must overwhelm the brutality of the few who now hold undeserved power. It is the single step on the thousand mile journey but without a collective effort what the destiny of our children? Grim…..or Grand? Don’t let it break you Victoria you are the voice crying in the wilderness but we are the people who hear you and bring others to hear you and that must make you strong enough to persevere. Thank you and enjoy the sunshine of Hawaii and be at Peace.


  18. Chelle Ellis
    March 1, 2018 @ 12:18 pm

    You make a difference. In the fluffermonsters you foster and because of your very valuable words, I’m trying to go vegan.

    Others who made a difference in my feed this morning:


  19. Marlena
    March 1, 2018 @ 4:00 pm

    I wish I could just give you a giant hug!!! I feel like you are the sister I wouand choose!!! I loved your posts about the house and stuff but I see that you have grown and that growing has opened your eyes to these issues in a way that just does not allow for you to stay silent. And not should you!!! Also I just recently did a cleanse and discovered I had parasites. Revolting!! And that the CDC estimates that 70 to 80. % of Americans do as well. Mostly from eating meat or fish. Cooking kills the live worms or parasites but not the eggs already laid in the meat, soooo eating meat and sugar and refined foods sets you up for parasitic infection which then causes inflammation which leads to cancer and other illnesses. Hence I have gone back to a vegetarian diet and without even trying lost weight. Also we should be eating to live, mot living to eat. I think many people have forgotten this concept. Hawaii is a wonderful place, my honey and I spent our honeymoon there and we went back 5 years ago with our daughter for a family reunion. Be in the moment and enjoy the beauty of the place and celebrate your relationship. Bon Voyage,


  20. Melissa
    March 1, 2018 @ 8:16 pm

    Aloha Victoria! I hope you spend many moments enjoying Hawaii. The happiest moments of my life were spent on Oahu and Kauai. It is a wonderful place to call home, and a great place for those who don’t to spend time soaking in aloha and trade winds, both which are shared from the islands and island people with you. It will be soothing to your spirit to let Hawaii minister to your spirit for sure.

    Since this is a public comment on a public post, I hope it comes across as intended. I comment frequently here on your blog while giggling about the latest Craig’s List find, stammering in awe and wonder at how you can rally your sweet husband to bring things up a ladder to the roof, through the window and in to the house, and crying honest, sad tears because saying good-bye to Elvis hurt. You have naturally grown in to a blogger-friend-in-my-inbox.

    I usually love the community you have around comments. Remarks are usually positive and respectful.

    Reading this post you made was hard, and I am like minded.

    A vegan since I was 12…I now have children in high school and college so it’s been my life for a long time. I am vegan in a family that is not, but tries new dishes I make, ideas I share, volunteering for things along with me in their time. I find that they take ownership in these natural evolving steps and it becomes authentic. I practice much of what you preach.

    This was still very difficult to read.

    Reading the comments here was harder, but probably not for reasons you may think.

    Some of the remarks to you have been pretty harsh, but what I like about you is the fact you don’t just wear your big girl pants, you dance in them. I am fairly certain you knew this could be a hot topic and thought “Come what may, I am putting my thoughts out there and let the chips fall where they may.” I know you are creative and tough along with being thoughtful.

    So the remarks people write regarding this post are expected, and I think you want the dialogue. Communication eventually will bring understanding. Maybe not full agreement, but it will begin the conversation.

    I think it must be hard for many people to see and hear a lot of what you shared; again it was a brutal contrast seeing abused animals towards the middle and end of the post to soft sweet kitties of the start. I think the shock they felt, coupled with angle that if you eat meat and drink milk you share responsibility for this, fed in to the comments directed at you that weren’t like minded. It is a hard, terrible thing to have given to you in your inbox when you wake up on a Wednesday morning (the real or perceived fault of horrible animal mistreatment). I practice living without eating meat and drinking milk and it was a very difficult and depressing moment to share with you.

    But you have the right to post it.

    As subscribers and followers and folks that love and enjoy you, we have a right to post a response. For agreement or disagreement, for questions and even for struggling through trying to understand.

    As subscribers invested in this blog, we have had an established history of being able to respond and not be bullied or shut down by others. As hard as comments may be to read against your stance, I think it has been all the more difficult to see such bitter things that follow in replies. In both directions.

    I realize that as I write this to post I may not have the “Atta Girl” comments following me. But still I feel this should be said. We need to treat animals with kindness. We need to treat humans with kindness.

    I hope once you have all the positive vibes from Hawaii filling your heart and spirit that you will come back to the blog and share an encouraging word and re-establish your community here as welcoming, upbeat and filled with hope wether it be for furry kittens, better animal practices, or induction ranges in any colour other than black.

    With love and aloha to you


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