I struggled with my weight for nearly 30 years. First, it was from having children. Then, a few years ago, I began to experience that thickening of the midsection that often happens to women as they hit their 50s and approach menopause. My waist grew to 44 inches, about 10 inches too big for my 5-foot-8 frame. 

I dialed up my exercise routine and tried out different dietary approaches. Low-carb had been my diet of choice for many years, but it never felt sustainable, and my weight had always yo-yoed. I began researching the negative long-term effects of low-carb, meat-heavy diets, and I discovered several documentaries, including Forks Over Knives

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After watching the documentaries, my husband and I made the decision to go full kale and go all in on a vegan diet. We quickly found local support and realized that whole-food, plant-based was the way to go.

Surprising Results 

I shed 10 inches from my waistline in the first eight months of being plant-based. My husband and I had thought we were just a little bit overweight and needed to lose 20 pounds, but we were wrong. We’ve lost 35 pounds each. The best part was that never once did we feel deprived. Just by eating as many whole plant foods as we wanted, the weight came off naturally.

We’ve been thrilled with the results we’ve continued to see from this new lifestyle and have easily maintained the weight loss. We enjoy trying WFPB recipes. I frequent the Forks Over Knives Recipes app, and lately I’m obsessed with the Tamale Waffles! We also love the Forbidden Rice Bowls, Chickpea Noodle Soup, and the Vegan Queso Sauce. We love to snack on air-popped popcorn and air fried-edamame and chickpeas. Friends and family have been supportive. No one has gone full-blown whole-food, plant-based like us, but several have reduced their meat intake and now make plant-based meals once or twice a week.

Going WFPB has been one of the best decisions of our lives. I look and feel much better than I did in my 40s, and I have so much energy! I firmly believe that anyone, even people in a healthy weight range, can reap rewards from making this lifestyle change.

Ready to get started? Check out Forks Meal Planner, FOK’s easy weekly meal-planning tool to keep you on a healthy plant-based path. To learn more about a whole-food, plant-based diet, visit our Plant-Based Primer.

Husband and wife Diana and Eric Hansen shown in two photos, before and after they adopted a whole-food, plant-based diet for weight loss - on the left, they stand in front of a waterfall, on the right, they're in a backyard, having both lost 35 pounds
Brown ceramic saucepan full of cooked brown rice, with a wooden spoon nestled beneath the rice
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