We would like to support our friend’s daughter Mikayla in her journey back to health as she prepares for a life saving kidney donor operation. Mikayla has taken as much of her health into her own hands as possible by switching completely to a plant based diet with some remarkable results, as she has outlined in her story below. We would like to invite our audience to read her brief story and hopefully support her efforts in raising some modest funds to help offset the cost of her uncle donating his kidney for this life saving operation.
Diet has been a very prominent part of my life for the last two years, ever since my kidneys stopped working in February 2016. The “kidney friendly diet” is high protein, low phosphorous, low potassium, and low sodium. Dairy isn’t recommended, and I have to keep track of my daily fluid intake (usually it’s under 2 liters a day). And, because of my blood thinners, I have to also keep track of my Vitamin K intake, with things like spinach and kale. On top of that, the recommendations for managing my lupus with diet are cutting out sugar and gluten. All added up that leaves me with: eggs. Which I have hated since I was a kid.
I did not think that there were a lot of options for me with my diet. I was monitored so closely at dialysis that I thought I should just stick to what they tell me to eat as best as I can, even if it meant cutting out some of my favorite foods like quinoa, hummus, grapefruit, kale, and salty snacks like pretzels.
“I had organ failure, high blood pressure, seizures, blood clots…” as she continued describing her symptoms, I perked up. These were all the same symptoms that I had been experiencing, too.
“And after I switched to a vegan diet, I didn’t have a flare up for months. When I got retested for the lupus indicators, they weren’t there.”
I swear I almost passed out. That very moment, I became vegan. I have now been eating a plant based diet for almost a year, and the improvement in my life has been amazing. One year ago, my blood pressure was severely unstable. I would either pass out or go into a seizure. Now, it’s so under control that I have stopped taking half of the amount of blood pressure medication, and I am exercising daily. One year ago, I was in so much pain that I was taking Oxycodone daily. Now, I haven’t refilled my prescription in months. One year ago I was complaining about the restrictions of my diet and the lack of flavor, and how I didn’t enjoy food anymore. Now, I am constantly looking up new recipes to try and to make for my friends and family, and I enjoy every meal. It has absolutely been a life-changing experience, and I plan to continue it, even after I receive my transplant.