Dietary Problems in the Real World
Bios of vegetarians, ex-vegetarians, and others
in search of health, not dogma...
Note: This section of the site presents the stories of people who have had significant problems on vegetarian, vegan, raw-food, or other alternative or "natural" diets, and how they solved them, whether by modifying the diet in some "unapproved" way while remaining vegetarian, or by moving on to a non-vegetarian one. We acknowledge and are aware of the stories of vegetarian successes that get plenty of publicity elsewhere. Given the focus of this site, however, and the fact the failures are usually hushed up, the latter are the case histories we are interested in documenting here for others to learn from.
If you fit the profile of an ex-rawist, ex-vegetarian, vegetarian, or someone else who has had to seriously rethink their "ideal" diet, or know of someone who has, we invite you to send us your information or story for consideration.
Please be aware that the inclusion of information about the occupations, dietary beliefs, or avocations of contributors here does not necessarily represent endorsement. Dietary bios, in particular, are presented on the site primarily for a look at the actual effects experienced, but given the personal nature of such narratives, no judgment on the part of Beyond Veg editors one way or the other about the individuals' personal beliefs or vocations should be implied.
|Vegetarians still... but with a difference
- Tom Billings: 30 years of transitions: from fruitarian to living foods to lacto-vegetarian. Computer consultant, yoga teacher, and San Francisco LiFE [a raw foods group] organizer.
- Kate Finn: Finding balance between the extremes of denial and indulgence. Massage therapist and yoga instructor [Updated: passed away in 2003].
- Sandy Warf: To balance compassion for animals with nutritional needs. Schoolteacher, former chair of EarthSave Orange County.
|Ex-vegetarians and non-veggies step forward
- Dean Esmay: From failure on conventional high-carb, low-fat diet to low-carb, high-protein, no-problem. PALEODIET listgroup host/moderator, and coordinator of several other internet lists including LOWCARB.
- Ward Nicholson: Attrition after fasting, raw foods, and conventional veganism. Founder and former coordinator of The Natural Hygiene Many-to-Many from 1992-1996; graphic designer and writer.
- Kirt Nieft: From Fit for Life, to Instincto, to Paleo. Schoolteacher in Hawaii; previously taught special and regular education classes in the U.S. and abroad in Peru, Thailand, and New Zealand.
- Sharrhan Williamson: My search for friendly dietary fuel: from low-carb to all-raw and back again after 20 years. Musician, painter, and long-time meditation practitioner.
|Others rethinking their "ideal diet"
- Roy Holman: Back from the brink of an eating disorder after raw foods. Roy was previously a human-rights activist doing work in Central America and is presently a yoga and meditation teacher in the (U.S.) Pacific Nothwest [Updated 2007].
|Editorials from individuals who have changed their diets
Note: these are not complete dietary bios, but links are included
here because the articles may interest those seeking stories of
failure-to-thrive on alternative diets, and/or stories of people who
have found a change of diet to be beneficial.
- Why An Expectant Mom Rejected a Raw Vegan Diet (Offsite link)
A woman shares her experience with raw vegan diets and pregnancy. Topics
include cravings, the dismal failure of 100% raw food diets in the long run,
and our attitudes regarding food.
- Risks of Raw Vegan Diets for Expectant Moms, Children, and Others, by Chet Day (Offsite link)
Chet Day, a former long-time raw vegan and promoter of raw food diets,
explains why he feels raw vegan diets are risky for some people. Chet's
views are based on 8 years of active correspondence with, and coaching of,
individuals attempting to follow a variety of raw
- Hallelujah Acres Research Casts Doubt On "Ideal Diet" (Offsite link)
Trouble in Hallelujah Diet land.
- Hallelujah Diet Crash: Losing Your Mind to the Genesis 1:29/Vegan Diet (Offsite link)
Greg Westbrook, former health minister for the Hallelujah Diet, details his family's road to health ruin.
- When Hallelujah Becomes "What Happened?" Crashing on the Vegan Diet. Book review by Chet Day (Offsite link)
Trouble in Hallelujah Diet land.