Learning to Find Happiness in Things Other Than Food

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plant based diet weight loss before and after

By Kassi LaJaunie Harrington

A Plant-Based Diet Weight Loss Success Story

After battling weight my entire life, I have finally found my answer to permanent weight loss and happiness.

Ever since I was a little girl, I always had a goal/resolution to lose weight. There has never been a time in my life that I can remember where I was happy with my size. Even at a very young age, I began cutting calories, working out, and trying the next fad diet. Of course, none of it ever worked!

Sure, I would see some results and then I would get tired of it, quit, and the pounds would find their way back. However, I had never addressed the real issue –my addiction to food!

Food was my escape. It was my go-to when I was glad, sad, mad, hurt, etc. Being from an overweight family, our lives revolved around food. Every holiday, family function, birthday, or just a regular Saturday was a reason to get together to prepare a huge spread of all sorts of delicious dishes with no regard for health or nutrition.

When we celebrated, we did it with food. When we were down in the dumps, food was our healer. I never realized how unhealthy my relationship with food was until a few years ago.

Fast forward to spring 2013…

My brother, also overweight, introduced the Whole Food Plant-Based (WFPB) diet/lifestyle to my family and me. I wasn’t convinced at first, but after seeing the success he was having, I couldn’t deny the results.

I jumped on board and began to make changes, slowly. I kept an open mind and continued to learn more about this way of eating.

I began to see food for what it should be, nutrition and/or fuel for the body. Looking at food this way encouraged me to make better choices.

I learned to find happiness in other things like running (the better I ate, the better I could perform), going for a bike ride, being able to fit in outfit that I liked, painting my own toenails (something that I could no longer do at my heaviest), just being active without feeling burnt out, etc.

I have been plant-based for over 4 years now, and I am still learning and cleaning up my diet more and more every day. I have lost approximately 96 lbs and counting.

I ran my first half-marathon in 2017—and have already signed up for 3 more in 2018– and I’ve gained my health back. I feel better than ever and at 32, I feel younger than I did ten years ago.

And the best part is, I am doing it without the aid of any pills or crazy diet plans!

Our plant-based starter kits are a great way to begin this new healthy lifestyle because they include a book, a set of DVD lectures from Dr. Neal Barnard, and a folder full of helpful literature from the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine.

Other Plant-Based Diet Success Stories:

Want more amazing encouragement? Check out these other Whole Food Plant-Based Diet (WFPB) Success Stories.



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  1. Congratulations Cassie. What a great testimonial to the Power of example and the benefits of a whole food plant-based diet. Best to you and yours!

  2. Dear Cassie: your story is soooooo amazing, and I am so happy for you. You go girl! I’m still working at losing my weight. But your story is an inspiration to me. You are a beautiful lady. It takes hard work and dedication to reach your goal. Congratulations! ๐Ÿ™‚

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