Personal Journeys with Gramma

Life adventures, inspiration and insight; shared in articles, advice, personal chats and pictures.

A Bean Tried to Kill Me! Adventures in Veggies

mean bean

The villain was a big, fat, dark red bean.  It was ugly.  It didn’t look like something an innocent young girl should eat, so I refused.  “You’ll try the beans, or you won’t leave the table,” my mother warned.

I think I’ve mentioned that I’m stubborn, so I sat…and sat…and sat.  The family adjourned to watch TV and still I sat.

“One bean.  You can eat at least one bean,” my mother relented slightly.

I isolated a single bean at the side of my plate and we exchanged stares.  (Yes, I felt like the bean was staring at me.)  I could hear the dialogue of an exciting TV program from the next room.  The bean and I were both cold.  This situation was growing serious.

“Do I have to eat it alone?”  I asked, formulating a rudimentary plan.

“Just as long as you eat it,” sighed my mother.

I took a dinner roll and pulled it open.  When I stuffed the single bean inside, it looked like it might be overwhelmed.  Maybe I wouldn’t taste it at all!  Just to give myself the best possible chance, I stuffed the entire “contaminated” roll into my mouth at once.

Egad!  I could still taste the bean.  And I was suffocating.  I chewed and swallowed as fast as I could, gasping for air and gagging in turn.  I’m happy to report I survived.  The bean was successfully—if not happily—dispatched.  But I had learned my lesson:  veggies are not to be trusted.

Many, if not most, people learned the same lesson at some point.  Veggies are boring.  All things sugary are good (better with chocolate), and fried things with sugar are better.  Meat is best with cheese or sauces or fried.  Bread (including all chips and rolls) is always good.  It’s the AMERICAN DIET!

I had already made friends with Chinese food (the sweet-and-sour stuff being my favorite) when a friend introduced Thai food to me.  My favorite was a red curry bowl with chicken and, eventually, hot tofu!  I could have it spicy, so it suited my Mexican food craves.  Then I tried Vietnamese food—especially with shrimp.  It could also be spicy.  Yum!  Then I tried East Indian food—love that curry!  Whole Mexican black beans with habanero salsa!  Cooked with different flavors, veggies are tasty.  I didn’t even notice that I was eating less and less meat.  My stomach loved me.

Then I did some research and figured out from several books* that my medical woes (issues with my heart and digestion) had been created by my previous eating habits.  What?  I could actually REVERSE my issues with a plant-based, low fat, no sugar, no white flour diet plus a little intentional motion.

Remember, if you will, that “diet” is a four-letter-word to me.  After years of failures, I don’t do it.  I love to eat delicious food, but now I can find veggie recipes that are to die for.  What strange new world is this?  When did they graduate from the killer kidney bean to these dishes?

I don’t believe in packaged veggie versions of high fat meals.  They don’t taste the same, and I resent hoping they will.  I eat only dishes that were ALWAYS based on veggies—dishes designed in cultures that didn’t choose to eat animals or didn’t always have extra animals to eat.  People all over the world want their food to taste great.  My tastes have broadened, as I had hoped they would.  My blood pressure has dropped over 20 points.  I’ll find out soon what else is going on inside me.  I feel very international.  The other day a clerk who is vegan spoke to me as a soul sister.  What fun!  I’ve accidentally aligned myself with a new club!  Give a sister applause!


*I’ll be referring to these books in future articles, but here are some of my recent favorites:  Spectrum by Dr. Dean Ornish; The End of Heart Disease by Dr. Joel Fuhrman, and How Not to Die by Dr. Michael Greger

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