Krista Watts Trades In Her Cat Allergies and Inhalers for Veggie Sandwiches
For nine years, Krista Watts needed to use an inhaler several times a day just to breathe. Her asthma overshadowed her life. Exercising was difficult, often leading to wheezing and a flushed face.
Krista’s asthma ordeal began after she adopted two cats. Tests led to the conclusion she was allergic to her new furry family. Unwilling to give up her much-loved pets, she resigned herself to living with a condition that was unpleasant at best, and life-threatening if it got out of hand.
For the last two and half years, though, Krista has not used her inhaler – not even once. She still has her cats, and plays with and pets them every day. Now age 38, she is amazed at her vigorous health and plummeting cholesterol, which fell from 255 to 173 as she regained control of her breathing.
The day Krista adopted an animal-free diet was the day she said good riddance to asthma. Recently I enjoyed the opportunity to interview Krista about her dietary transformation.
Growing up, Krista ate mostly meat, dairy, eggs, and processed foods. Ironically, her mother’s aim was to serve low sodium, low fat foods, but the family’s meals did not meet this goal. Krista got stomach aches. To get her to eat, Krista’s mom made such “fun foods” as bologna and cheese sandwiches cut into kid-friendly shapes with a cookie cutter. She felt controlled by food addictions – to sugar as a child and to a daily cheese habit as an adult
Krista was inspired to choose a plant-based diet when she read the book Skinny Bitch. Her reaction: “I felt like I had been woken up, as if I had been sleep walking through my dietary choices with no real idea of the impact of my individual choices on my body, the environment and the animals I was eating.”
Her new diet is liberating and fun. Krista observes “now I enjoy every meal. I crave fresh crunchy organic veggies. I enjoy veggie sandwiches, beans, potatoes, nuts, seeds, brown rice and my new favorite quinoa. I have a great recipe for quinoa salad with black
beans, mango, red pepper and cilantro. Every time I take it to an event I am asked for the recipe! My husband and I have really taken to juicing as well. He makes us his specialty “green juice” every other morning using organic veggies and a high quality juicer.”
These wonderful foods are made even more enjoyable because they are in line with Krista’s belief system. She says “I feel I am living a more authentic life and I am so grateful for the people and organizations who tried to reach me through books, movies, investigations and websites. I only wish I had made these changes earlier in life.”
Two forces keep Krista strongly committed to a plant-based diet. First is her own health. She feels noticeably lighter, enjoys vastly improved health and freedom from asthma, takes pleasure in every moment with her cats, and thinks more clearly on an animal-free diet. Just as important is her empathy for animals and desire to take a stand against “the unspeakable treatment of animals raised for food.” She recognizes that a compassionate diet is the foundation of a life that is compassionate in all ways.
When she first adopted a plant-based diet, Krista was anxious about how her family would respond. At first, she was not sure how to talk to others about her new choices. She discovered “that when I spoke from my heart about why I no longer would be consuming animals and animal products I found a good deal of support and even admiration. I have become a positive role model for my husband and others which feels pretty amazing. I am grateful to be able to share my story. If I can do it you can too!”
Krista so vividly demonstrates that a plant-based diet is not a deprivation. Instead, this way of eating is exciting and liberating on just about every level – health, compassion, and even relationships. Getting rid of asthma, with its scary wheezing and harmful drug side-effects, is only the beginning of the wonderful changes.
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Blog posting by Janice Stanger, Ph.D. Janice authored The Perfect Formula Diet, a nutrition book built on sustainable food choices. Enjoy six kinds of whole foods for permanent, hunger-free weight loss and health.