I have never called myself a vegetarian. You know why? Because even before I gave up meat entirely, I had given up eggs and dairy products long before. When I was still eating meat I would tell people that even though I ate some meat I was actually closer to being a vegan than a vegetarian. I finally gave up eating meat in October of 2009 when I finished reading “The China Study.”
My name is Russ Marchewka and I grew up like almost everyone else. Typical childhood, played sports, got in trouble at school etc etc… We ate a typical American diet for the most part except we had a lot of home made meals. Didn’t eat out much because we were of pretty humble means. It’s possible that I may have gotten more vegetables than the average kid, but growing like a weed (I’m now 6’6”) I also ate more meat, sugar and salty foods than the other kids too. Thank God I don’t have diabetes. Anyway, ever since I was a kid I got sick a lot, when I hit puberty I got acne, had my tonsils removed in hopes that I wouldn’t get sick as much. That didn’t work. Then got an (internal) nose job to rework my sinus cavity, that didn’t work. Then I just gave up. Until…. I was 22 and I was fed up with my acne and I bought this e-book online as a last ditch effort to try and cure it. That’s when my life changed…
Looking back, some of the advice I don’t agree entirely with now, BUT the basic tenants still hold true. For the first time I was being told that my outside appearance was the result of what was happening internally in my body and that was the result of what I was putting into my mouth. This was where I started learning about better nutrition and that the foods I eat have a drastic effect on how I look and feel. I started by purchasing a bunch of supplements (sound familiar) and trying to take a bunch of pills to get better. That didn’t really work, but I did notice some improvements with added fiber and essential fatty acids. IMPROVEMENT! What I had been trying to get for years from lotions, potions, powders and pills!
Now I was hooked. I could never go back, I am officially addicted to feeling and looking as healthy as I can be. Fast forward a few years, dozens of movies, hundreds of books, thousands of articles and I have more information in my head about health, nutrition, living a long time and green living than I thought could fit. It took me a year to cut out beef and pork, and then another 18 months after that to cut out cheese (I’ve never liked eggs so that was easy). The last year wasn’t that hard with poultry and fish, getting down to fish pretty easily and then just cutting out fish for the most part. I rarely have sushi if ever and usually opt for the veggie rolls. The “mostly vegan” part now comes from a diet derived from plants and supplementing with a high quality fish oil. There are many benefits to fish oil that flax and other vegetable oils can’t provide. Oh by the way, I don’t get sick anymore! I don’t miss my tonsils, but I’m pretty sure they weren’t the problem.
I play professional volleyball and after the summer of 2010 having gone an entire summer being vegan, I must say that this is the best my body has ever felt after a long summer. In becoming a vegan and reading so much about health and nutrition I inevitably became concerned about the welfare of our planet and caught the green bug. So now all I do is play volleyball and promote taking better care of our bodies and the planet. Since neither of those pay nearly enough money, I also work at PF Chang’s to support the rest of my bills. Not the healthiest restaurant in the world, BUT it actually can be very healthy if you know how to order. So I actually enjoy getting to make suggestions to my guests to help them order healthy items if they are open to it. I am trying to work on something with their corporate team to partner and promote the healthy side of PFC to the world!
I started writing The Body Blog over a year ago, and got serious about it around 3 months ago in July. I strive to write about nutrition and eco-consciousness in a way that is easy to read, a little controversial and easy to digest (pun intended). Come on over and have a look sometime! www.worldhealthhub.com