Hello! I’m Mandy, a wife and stay-at-home mama who is addicted to tahini, dark chocolate, nut butters, and healthy living. I was born and raised in Illinois, lived four years in Southern California, and found my true home in Bend, OR with my husband (Josh) and daughter (Willow). I received my BA in Psychology in 2002, but after working for a few years in the field, I realized my true passion was found in cooking, writing, reading and exploring the great outdoors with my family. I have learned that better health starts from within, consciously wanting to make a change inside and out.
When I was 13, I made the decision to become a vegetarian after seeing a news segment on slaughterhouses. The cruelty horrified me and forever changed the way I looked at animals. For the next 16 years, I continued to consume dairy and eggs because I thought that since they’re not killing the chickens or the dairy cows, that it was OK. My health and well-being slowly declined over the years and the number of health issues increased. I battled chronic migraines, acne, depression, chronic fatigue, anxiety, digestive issues and was taking a few prescription medications. I was miserable and realized that something needed to change, that life could be better. Through my own research and with the help of a holistic practitioner, I was able to link all of my issues to food. By eliminating all animal products, gluten and soy, I was able to heal my body and stop all medications. My initial reason for going vegan was for health reasons, but I learned soon after about the cruelty within the dairy and egg industries. Twelve years later, I could never go back.
Be Sol-Ful was born seven years ago when I realized that my story might be able to help someone else. On my blog, you will find my personal journey of trial & error, what I’ve learned, how I’ve grown, cruelty-free products I love, along with plant-based recipes. I believe in being kind and rather than being forceful with information, I have found that taking the gentle approach to sharing about plant-based living is better received. I also believe in being transparent – to be open with both struggles and successes – to show that I am just as human as the next person.
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