Tell us a little bit about you?
Hi! My name is Delight Tabesh.
What was your diagnosis and which health problems did you face?
Morbid obesity, Diabetes 2, High blood pressure, Nerve pain headaches, severe. I battled fatigue I often battled bad moods, Lacked energy, Sleepless nights…
How did you come to know about the plant-based diet?
My niece came to visit for 3 weeks in 2013. She had recently changed to WFPB diet. She showed me the Forks Over Knives video. My husband and I had stopped eating red meat 25-30 years ago. So it didn’t seem like a giant leap. I had Bariatric surgery the first time in 1978… Lost 98 pounds… From 232 down to 134. My body rejected surgery and I got diverticulitis within a few weeks and nearly died. Carried a fever of 106 while the hospital had me packed in ice. I encountered a near-death experience, which is another story in itself! After 6 days, I began to feel better and went home to face vomiting after 30% of my meals. Could never keep meat down easily if it was cooked the slightest bit dry. After about 3 years, I began gaining weight back and then some. In 2011, I was having severe “pace the floor, crying” pain in my stomach only to be referred back to the Bariatric surgeon after an enterologist had looked through a scope into my stomach and told me he had no idea what to do! He showed me the pics and it just looked black! inside as compared to pink on the other side of my stomach. The Bariatric surgeon explained to me that at some point the staples had opened and food was overflowing into the side of the stomach that had been stapled closed and since it had no way of leaving through the intestines, the food was rotting and causing my problems. He suggested a revision Bariatric surgery. I said, No way. I nearly died the first time! What’s the alternative? His answer was, you can go home and come back when you feel more desperate or we can schedule the surgery now. I had the surgery a month later. My highest weight was 270 but I was trying to lose weight. By the surgery date, I weighed 250. The doctor found that he was unable to simply clean out the damaged side of my stomach and it was necessary to remove it. This time, I HAD TO be compliant. Half my stomach was gone! I can’t afford to damage what I have left!
I went from 250 to 172. Within 10 days I was off all diabetic 2 meds (I was taking 5 pills a day just for diabetes 2) and after a few months, I was taken off my blood pressure meds also. I no longer needed to take Prilosec. However, the severe stinging headaches were still there and I took Gabapentin 3 times a day. Then 2 years later my niece introduced me to WFPB eating. I was ready, willing and able to go for it. Eating chicken, fish, turkey was still not comfortable for me anyway. The journey began. My husband was happy to support me in this. He is my greatest supporter. He eats and compliments every meal I make! BTW, we’ll celebrate 50 years this September. He says he is looking forward to many more now that we’re both on this way of eating.
What were the benefits of adopting a plant-based lifestyle for you?
It took me a while to learn to cook WFPB and even longer to find a starch-based diet that really works best for me because of zero oils/fats. Benefits… No more vomiting after eating, blood sugar controlled with food, much more energy, sleeping well, happy and laughing again, my skin looks so bright and I look much younger. I’ll be 70 years old in April 2020! I have been able to stop every one of the medicines and my severe headaches are few and far between and not nearly as strong and don’t look last but a few minutes now! Imagine me… ZERO meds. I never thought it possible.
What do you like the most about the plant-based diet?
The way I feel! I love cooking with all the colors and I actually TASTE the flavors. We both enjoy everything about being healthy. My husband is 78 and ZERO meds and Zero health problems! I look forward to soon being able to say I have TOTALLY reversed my diabetes 2.
What would you say to people that are facing similar health problems as you have?
Try it! What do you have to lose besides your health problems? You owe it to yourself and your loved ones to stay healthy! Don’t just take my word for it… Educate yourself and I guarantee you’ll see the light.
Are there any web resources you would suggest, that helped you the most when transitioning to a plant-based lifestyle?
The first year I purchased the FOK program so I could learn HOW to cook this way. That helped a lot. Then I took off on my own, educating myself online with many web resources such as Dr. McDougall, Dr. Barnard, Dr. Esselstyn, Chef AJ, and many many other doctors and researchers, along with WFPB recipe sites. When I came across a post from you, Zana, I really wanted to get to know you personally. I wanted to be friends with you. You seem well informed and I just clicked with the personality of your posts. Of course, I am willing to be interviewed by you. I wish you total success in your endeavors and I admire your ambitions! One day… Everyone will know your name, I’m sure!
Anything you would like to add?
This is the most fun, fulfilling, and successful journey I’ve ever taken. I love it. I’m proud of myself! My lowest weight after Bariatric surgery in 2011 was 172 and now 9 years later, in still weigh 179! I’m ready again to release pounds. I’m now following the Starch Solution way of eating and I’ll start losing again until I reach my naturally healthy body weight! It’s exciting. I want everyone to feel like this!