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Hi, its Heather


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I am about to make a confession: yes, a confession to a whole forum of vegans, so i do hope this is read with an open mind. Please keep in mind that the reason I am here is because I have made a conscious decision to become vegan again, so please do not hate me!


I was vegan for three years before I got sick. Not just sick, but I came down with a case of shingles on my back. I was twenty two at the time and I thought I was doing all of the right things wiht my diet. It was sumemrtime so I wasnt stressed out, but I was living "on the go" a lot. I had always been a healthy vegan and was appalled with my doctor informed me that I should include some animal protein in my diet, as an amino acid deficiency had caused my shingles.


At the time my boyfriend had also gone vegan, and I swear he looked exactaly like a cancer patient. He looked horrible- far too skinny, sallow, dark circles, tirec, cranky, low sex drive, everything. It was awful. It was then that I decided we should both add some animal protein to our diet. I resolved to eat fish here and there, but otherwise stay vegan.


The first time my boyfriend took me out for a fish dinner I put on my brave face and let him order. However, as soon as the waiter put to food on the table, I lost control of my brave facade and ran crying to the bathroom. I eventually became braver, and for the past 6 months have been eating raw fish and sometimes eggs.


However, I feel different. I do not feel as healthy as I did when I was a "healthy" vegan. I had been trying to accept that since I was a human being with type "O" blood, etc, that this was okay for me...but it feels wrong. I hate not feeling like I am making a positive difference in the world. Without my health as a vegan I was no longer influencing people in positive ways. My boyfriend did a complete 360 and now is an avid steak eater.


I am sad to say that I believed that was all okay.


I WANT TO BE VEGAN AGAIN. I want to do it healthily, and not end up with some weird freaky illness. I am here for support, advice, and encouragement. I am also here to learn ways to get in shape and still be vegan. I need to revamp my shopping list. I need to think of better things to make for myself when I am "on the go".


I think that living in this small town really disconnected me with all of the vegan friends I once had at college. I do not know of one vegan anymore in my area.


I also have some athletic goals- one of them is to run a marathon. I can't wait to get started. Your advice (no guilt trips, please) is soooooo accepted. I love you all, and as of today I can call myself a true vegan again

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Hello, Heather


First, change your doctor. He didn't care to at least tell you that he doesn't know why you got the shingles. Didn't they swear 'to help, or at least to do no harm?'

Apart from that, all of the 8 amino acids which are essential for humans are available in plant sources. What meat eaters mean is that you can't find all of them in one plant - which is also wrong - soy has all of the 8 essentials (not advertising soy here, just an example). Anyway, if you combine different plant sources, you will get all of the aminos. And most people combine food sources naturally, you don't have to worry about that. If you eat ONLY rice - well, then you are going to lack some aminos. But I think it's worse to eat ONLY meat - scurvy will get you quicker.

I have no idea why shingles appear but I'm 101% sure your doctor wasn't right.

Being a vegan is healthier than meat eating because you avoid the saturated fats and the cholesterol in meat. Meat is also full of toxins and harder to digest.

With that said, being a vegan doesn't necessarily mean living healthy - it just means living healthier. The chemicals in the food are still there, there are chemicals in the water we drink, there's the radiation, the air we breathe is polluted.

Also, we might get all nutrients from our food but are we sure they are utilized by the body or just thrown out?

And yes, vegan food is harder to come by and sometimes not having cooked means starving But that can easily be taken care of - just cook more.

So don't worry about being vegan - it is a step towards good health. Welcome back:)

This is my 'motivational article', hope it's useful:


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What ever makes you happy.

I don't think you will find to many judgemental people around here, unless you want to venture into the political forum. It would be interesting to know your doctors answer to why omnis get Shingles. Probably tells them too much meat and suggest a vegan diet.

Ask him to show you were in the medical journals it say to eat a big fat steak instead of antiviral drugs drug treatments.

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Hi Heather,


Welcome to the forums. I wish you the best of luck with moving back to a vegan diet. There is a lot of great information here and I hope you can use it to help you to find the right balance.


Good luck with your marathon too!



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Some great advice by Duncan; love the time he took to help you with that. As for the Type "O" and blood diet belief, one big story and nothing more than that. Btw, type O positive and I do just fine on my raw food diet for past 2 years and vegan for 5 1/2.


Well anyhow, I hope you do browse around and ask specific questions that put you on track with your desire to transition back to being 100% vegan. You'll be happy you did.


Hope the shingles are ok.

Heartfelt intro, loved to read it.


see ya

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