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Why We Say YES or NO to Plants


7 snapshot-stories about stumbling blocks / 15 obstacles for learning about plants / 10 smart reasons to embrace WPF education

The more I listen to people's stories of transitioning from a standard Western diet towards whole plant foods and Food + Fitness as Medicine, the more I've learned about how our WHY can be clear, strong, murky, or weak. These lists can support your transition towards a possible hospital-free life. Bonus: food animals and the planet will thank you.

Here are seven real-life examples of what a stumbling block can look like:


  • One WPF beginner... is no longer welcome at her in-laws home because they think her new WPF diet and lifestyle are a direct, personal, and political attack on dairy farmers and ranchers (BTW: they share the same political views)!

  • One WPF beginner... talked about his food addiction that he denied for most of his life; his ability to say this out loud and the stigma attached kept him sick and in and out of hospitals for years! 

  • One WPF beginner... is bombarded with debunking friends and relatives who send her articles that "prove" how butter, beef, and beer are nutritious options; she isn't yet ready to talk about things like the unfortunate reality regarding Accolades vs Evidence, or how to navigate and then talk about clinical research studies!

  • One WPF beginner... is given faux-vegan, highly processed foods by friends and family, in order to show him that his new plant-powered choices are accepted and that he is loved; he can't figure out a way to show gratitude for their efforts, while at the same time saying a polite no, thanks without offending them! 

  • One WPF beginner... is ostracized in their community because of eating and living in a different way than their culture and cultural heritage; one friend called them "not black enough" because they no longer eat fried foods or the nutrient-poor and overly fatty-sugary-salty foods brought to their church and celebrations, which they don't eat! 

  • One WPF beginner... shared his frustration with marketing manipulations that are not only misleading, they're completely untrue; he is frustrated with all the lies and disinformation campaigns that his friends and family still believe, just like he used to! 

  • One WPF beginner... says she can't imagine how to get her kids to eat less junk food, especially because she was the person who bought it for them in the first place and devoured these processed foods as much as her kids!

My advice? Stay the course. Never give up. Every try counts. You are not alone. No, really! The truth is the truth, no matter the amount of peer-pressure, false-marketing manipulation, or obstacles we might have to slay. In this moment, we all don't know what we don't know... until we do, right? It's a process, not a race. This is the essence of education.

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“And people who were seen dancing are thought to be insane

by those who can't hear the music."

- Anonymous

7 obstacles for learning about plants

  • Our reptilian brain thinks we're living in caves and almost starving, so it wants us to overeat calorie-dense food. 

  • It's confusing to know whom to trust due to industry-funded studies, media click-bait, and conflicting info. 

  • It pushes up against addictions we might not even know we have (addiction is far more common than we realize).

  • It's less effort to take a pill prescribed by someone in a white jacket and paid for via insurance companies.

  • It's difficult for people to change unhealthy habits, go grocery shopping, and cook plant-powered meals at home. 

  • It's contrary to some cultural realities, self/cultural identities, religious practices, and friends + family traditions. 

  • It's inconceivable for many people to realize and then accept that we're being deceived on purpose for profit.

And if these hurdles weren't hard enough to overcome... here are 8 more:

  • Financially-backed lobbyists

  • Manipulative marketing tactics + so-called research

  • Nutritionally inexperienced healthcare providers

  • Politically motivated dietary guidelines

  • Carb-fearing celebrities + media-craving doctors

  • Supplement/snake-oil gurus + athletes

  • Worrying about farmers' + ranchers' livelihoods

  • Sexy restaurants + happy hours + bartenders

10 smart reasons to embrace WPF education

  • Engaging in more dialogues with farmers and ranchers with Big Hearts and Big Brains wide open (on all sides).

  • Empowering and inspiring young people to learn about food science, food gardening, and food systems.

  • Educating healthcare professionals and institutions, medical students, you, me, and everyone else. Everywhere.

  • Shedding light on cultural realities such as food insecurity, food deserts, peer pressure, and limiting beliefs.

  • Addressing healthcare costs, insurance billing fraud, misclassification of drugs, and food-system monopolies.

  • Protecting food animals and eco-systems, including land, air, and water creatures becoming extinct.

  • Taking care of our planet, and collectively recognizing it's a closed and finite system.

  • Saving human lives every year via WPF that have shown to prevent and reverse a slew of chronic diseases.

  • Exposing lobbies, corporations (food, beverage, agriculture, pharma, media, academia), marketing campaigns, law firms, public institutions, schools, hospitals, misreported research, and misinformed doctors and celebrities.

  • Providing eight billion people nutrient-dense plants, because we're capable of feeding the world... right now. 

"In any given moment, we have two options: to step forward into growth or step back into safety."

-  Abraham Maslow, American Founder of Humanistic Psychology (died 1970)

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