“My plant-based diet helps me feel closer to my Heavenly Father”

Brecklyn Ferrin and FamilyBy: Brecklyn Ferrin

A year ago my life changed completely. My first child, a son, was born. During my pregnancy I was very nauseous, and not very many foods appealed to me. I ate a ton of pizza and crackers because they were the only things that sounded good. By the end of my pregnancy I gained about 50 lbs. I had already gained about 20 lbs due to the stress of a miscarriage and graduate school. I had no energy, and I was lost in the throes of depression.

Shortly after my son’s birth, my Dad read Eat to Live by Dr. Joel Fuhrman. He lost a ton of weight and felt fantastic. I was anxious to lose the extra 70 lbs I was carting around, so I borrowed it. The things I learned about how diet affects disease both scared and encouraged me. My family has a history of heart disease, and I just expected that to be my fate. If there is something that I can do to increase the time I have to spend with my son and husband here on earth, that is what I am going to do!

What started as a means of losing weight for superficial reasons became a tool to increase my quality of life. In discussions with my dad, we marveled at the similarities between the “Eat to Live” diet and the parameters outlined in the Word of Wisdom.

As I studied Doctrine & Covenants 89, I kept thinking about the word “famine.” The Word of Wisdom says that meat is to be used sparingly, in times of famine. As my personal situation is not one of famine, it just makes sense for me not to eat meat. I can’t speak for anyone else about that.

I also began to think about the love God must have for the animals here on earth, and how saddened he must be at their mistreatment under current factory farming conditions.

As time went on, I struggled to cut out processed and sugary foods. I couldn’t control myself. If I had one cookie, I had to have five cookies (or more). I told myself I’d just have one slice of pizza, but then ate half of the pie. I couldn’t seem to control myself. I realized that I was addicted. Sugar and fat-laden foods are my addictions.

I had already removed meat from my diet, so I decided to cut out sugar, dairy, refined grains, and processed foods completely for six weeks. At the end of six weeks (January 2014), I felt better than I ever have in my life. I had more energy, and my depression was better controlled than ever before. I gained momentum, and each day I was successful made the next day even easier.

Every day is a battle not to go back to my old ways, and sometimes I falter, but with the Lord’s help I keep trying and keep improving. I am so much happier and healthier now. My depression is easier to manage, and I feel so much closer to my Heavenly Father, and more in control of my body. I still struggle with my food addictions, but I know that I have been given the tools to overcome and rise above them.

Brecklyn lives in Kaysville, Utah with her husband and one-year-old son. She completed her Bachelors in Violin Performance at Indiana University, and her Masters in Music at the University of Utah. She chronicles her plant-based journey at www.veggiestrongmom.com.

Comments

  1. I”m so glad you got a handle on your addictions through following the Word of Wisdom. I’m like you in some ways. If I eat a tiny bit, I want more and more and more. So, I just don’t go there anymore. It’s hard when those around us eat our drugs right in front of us, but…I feel so empowered, when I overcome. God gave us free agency. Using it properly brings many blessings.

  2. Brecklyn, I was very pleased to learn from what you wrote that you have come to recognize that addictions to the foods that are harmful to us can be overcome by letting our Lord’s words he gave us in Section 89 of the Doctrine and Covenants motivate and even compel us to undo those addictions! I really enjoyed what you wrote and I predict that you are going to continue with great success, with the continuing help from the Lord you have invited to bless you, in handling those addictions as they most likely raise their ugly heads on a continuing basis. I pray the Lord will continue to bless you! Neil Birch

  3. I really enjoyed your post, Brecklyn. I know my sis is having a lot of problems with the people eating her drug of choice in front of her, too. I am going to send this article to her. She is vegan, but her family ridicules her for it and they eat a lot of meat and high sugar foods. Their salads are of the iceberg lettuce variety and my sis tries so hard to keep to her vegan lifestyle, but sometimes she caves in and feels terrible about it. She so wants to lose weight. In fact, she is the person who first introduced me to Dr. Joel Fuhrman’s The End of Diabetes book which uses the Eat to Live plan with a focus of eliminating diabetic symptoms from our lives. This changed my life! Keep it up, Brecklyn. You have a handsome husband and darling little boy who will need to have you around for many, many years to come!

  4. Brecklyn really appreciate you sharing your story. It’s great to know the dietary changes are having such a positive impact on your life. You are a great example of what a little study, an open mind and determination can do. Must check out your blog : ) Kevin

  5. Thank you all so much for the kind comments. I have been feeling discouraged lately, but your words have inspired me and lifted me. Thank you so much. I am so grateful for Jane for creating this space where we can encourage and lift each other.

    • Thanks, Brecklyn! It is not easy to do this on your own. All of us need to feel we are part of a larger community of people who love this way of eating and the blessings we see doing this. Many more need this message, they just don’t know it yet. If we each do our part, many more will experience the blessings we are seeing. Thanks so much for sharing your story!

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