Hey, thanks for stopping by! I’m Olivia ~ The Vegan Zebra.
So, what’s that? Well, defined separately via Webster’s and Wikipedia respectively, they are as follows:
Ve•gan (n.) /ˈvēɡən/ : A person who does not eat or use animal products.
Ze•bra (n.) /ˈzēbrə/ : American medical slang for one who is diagnosed with a rare or exotic illness.
Together, however, I find this [self-proclaimed] definition to be quite fitting:
Wow, that’s a mouthful. Damn right it is. A mouth full of Kale, yeah! That’s the short and sweet explanation. Wanna hear more? I knew you would. Read on, friend, read on…
So, what makes me a Zebra? Long story short, I was benched out of the game of life for a time while things like Ehlers Danlos Syndrome, Hemachromatosis, Hypogammaglobulinemia (and several other unsavory things to have), threw curve balls at me. I’m sure I’ll eventually get around to telling the full story of how this all came about, and in my 30’s no less, but that’s a start.
Aside from being a Zebra, I am also a Registered Nurse, Certified Case Manager, Certified Managed Care Nurse, Certified Health and Wellness Coach, and Certified Yoga Instructor, just to name a few accomplishments 😉 . I have a Master’s degree in Nursing and have spent a great deal of my career, (and spare time) researching as much as I can about the human body, and the nutrition and movement it requires for optimal health.
Have I been a vegan my whole life? Nope. I don’t think it has even been two years at the start of this blog. Prior to my major health crises, I had tried every diet on the list in an effort to solve things like belly issues, weight issues, energy issues, skin issues, etc. We’re talking the whole shebang- Whole30, GAPS, AIP, Keto, Low-carb, and several other fads and brands, with very little success in consistently or fully alleviating my symptoms. One day while cooking chicken, I just looked at it and thought, ‘Nope. I can’t eat this..’. I don’t know why that thought occurred, or what about it made me not want it, but the meat door slammed right into my face and was soldered shut.
This struck everyone, including myself, as quite the odd occurrence, because if one were to look at my Facebook or speak to anyone who knew me before that time, all one would hear or see was that I was allllll about the bacon everything, the pork rind croutons, the weekend steak-fests, the ice cream…. Oh, the ice cream..
Who put a spell on me??
Whatever voodoo hex that chicken put on me, I’ve never been the same. After that, I switched gears in my extracurricular studies to those only which didn’t involve meat. Meat-free meals, vegan athletes, health benefits of veganism, plant-based diets doing this or that, etc. Selfishly, I was doing the vegan thing for health, but exposure to the things none of us think about, or even want to know, regarding the truths around how animal products actually make it to our plates, is virtually unavoidable. And that stuff is pretty messed up. If feeling as though I had just discovered the cure-all tonic for all that is shit in life wasn’t enough to compel me toward a vegan lifestyle, the knowledge of the repercussions of NOT living that lifestyle is certainly the straw that would’ve broken this omnivore’s back.
You will see a great deal of ‘research’ here, and my thoughts on that research, in an effort to help others better understand the jargon within it. With better understanding, my hope is to help others adopt a healthier lifestyle by making information available in an understandable, relatable, applicable way. You can tell people to do all sorts of things all day long, but until they know the whys and the hows, there will inevitably be a struggle to fully adopt the change.
My hope for this blog is that it serves to empower others toward health and personal growth. I will work to raise awareness about important issues regarding health, living beings, the Earth, and everything in between, as best I can. I am grateful to have such an opportunity and platform to do so. And, while this is a monetized blog, I hope to be able to generate enough revenue doing all of this, to put that money to good use by way of donations, education, and other deficits it could help fill. Please see the affiliate disclaimer and other policies here.
You will also see other helpful things such as recipes, coupons, product reviews, etc. Everyone should be an educated consumer, and I want to help accomplish that. Which brings us to…
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So, I thank you for indulging me and this little novella. If you have any feedback, questions, concerns, kudos, comments, etc. we’d love to hear from you! Just swing on over to here and hit us up!
Olivia | The Vegan Zebra