Have you ever been inspired and motivated by reading the story of someone on a whole food, plant-based diet? If you have, please share YOUR story! Contact me —Jane
By: Judy Morse Thurber
My mother and I were alone for 3 1/2 years while my dad served in WWII. I remember rationing with stamps to limit purchases and eating pretty basic, low budget, comfort foods. We ate mac and cheese, chipped beef on toast, cream of chicken on toast, oatmeal, and toasted cheese sandwiches. Milk was always the drink with every meal. One distinct memory from my youth was when margarine was first introduced to the world. As a child, I loved adding the yellow color to make it look more like butter. After Dad returned from the war, we had roast beef on Sunday and used the leftovers to make sandwiches for Sunday dinner. I never felt deprived . . . until I got old enough to evaluate the fake butter. Then I began to rail against that and vowed that there would always be real butter on my table as an adult (little did I know!).
I was married and the mother of five children when my husband and I were involved in a business that purchased one of the first supplement companies in the nation. We had to quickly learn the importance and value of food supplements. This enlightened me to the fact that we were not getting the full value out of our food. At the time, I suffered with night blindness and complexion problems and a few other issues that were nutritionally based. The supplements helped me overcome those issues and started to direct my attention to the need for better nutrition. (I now love to help people eliminate supplements by eating whole food, plant-based!)
While raising a family, I was a music teacher, organist, choir director, and soloist. I kept very active as a mother (now seven children), business partner with my husband in the supplement business, and as a musician. In all of my busyness, and above all, I have been a “Truth Seeker,” which is what led me to The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints in my thirties.
The Word of Wisdom fit perfectly into my views of life. After we joined the Church, we refined our eating habits considerably, but not sufficiently. My first husband died at a young age of cancer. I cared for him for two years, trying to overcome the cancer naturally. This added to my knowledge and determination to know, understand, practice, and teach alternative, natural healthcare methods. I studied and became a Naturopath, and discovered special healing gifts.
I am still a practicing Naturopath. I spend hours daily helping others to regain their health and vitality. At the same time, I have had a simmering heart condition myself, and I finally gave in to accepting the fact that I needed to go beyond my own self-care and get assistance from a cardiologist. The diagnosis was a stiffening heart muscle with four leaky valves. This created a problem when I was trying to sleep. During the day, I had no problems, but it awakened me three to four times nightly with my heart struggling to beat. The cardiologist assured me that it was mild leakage, and that the blood was pooling when I was horizontal and not moving. I determined that if I got up and walked each time it aroused me, I could reset the beat and sleep another couple hours. I even raised my head with extra pillows and took blood-thinning supplements and resigned myself to this. Needless to say, I was living a fairly clean life, which meant that my arteries were clear and during normal daily activity, the problem was fairly unnoticeable. Stair steps left me breathing heavy, but that was the only problem during a normal day. I was resigned to my nightly walks to keep things functioning.
Then last summer (2016), My daughter (Kimberly Morse Smith) introduced me to whole food, plant-based nutrition. I watched Forks Over Knives in late July and joined the Discovering the Word of Wisdom Support Group on Facebook. I began my own WFPB adventure in August. Some time in October, after melting off a few pounds, I began to wake up less and less, and when I did wake-up, my heart was not struggling and was not so erratic. After three months, I was sleeping all night and waking up with an unnoticeable, faithfully beating heart! I know we are not supposed to make claims about healing, so just determine what you will from my story. I am elated to get on with my life, and I vow to never take my beating heart for granted.
I have a deep and abiding testimony of the Word of Wisdom. Like all of the scriptures and our spiritual perspectives, there are many layers in the Word of Wisdom. I am grateful to have my knowledge and experience added upon with whole food, plant-based nutrition. I am also one who cannot learn a great truth without sharing it with anyone who will listen. I am so grateful for the Discovering the Word of Wisdom community and the opportunity to learn and perfect my health, and then pass it on! I will continue to learn and share this wonderful version of the Word of Wisdom. I know it will BLESS YOUR HEART! It sure blessed mine!!!
Judy Morse Thurber (74) lives in Byron Center, Michigan. She raised 7 children, but between biological and stepchildren, she is now the grandmother of 89 grandchildren (8-10 serving missions at any given time!). Judy loves attending their concerts, productions, and sports events. She also loves sharing her knowledge and experience with her family, along with her love of the Gospel and our nation. Judy is a musician and a Naturopath. She loves to read and learn and write, especially poetry.