pinterest Save

meet the esselstyns-they're a plant-based family

I just got home from one of the most inspiring, education, and delicious weekends ever! I attended the plant-based Forks Over Knives conference ( where I heard amazing speakers. I'm going to encourage you to attend a Forks Over Knives or Engine 2 Diet conference if they are ever in a city near you.

Dr. Esselstyn, author of How To Prevent and Reverse Heart Disease, Dr. Doug Lisle, author of The Pleasure Trap, Dr. Joel Kahn, author of Dead Execs Don't Get Bonuses, and Rip Esselstyn, from Engine 2 Diet all spoke about the benefits of a whole-food, plant-based diet. Dr. Esselstyn was the first speaker, following the introduction of his son, Rip. He spoke about How To Prevent And Reverse Heart Disease. His words, were so poiniont, given today's recent report from the World Health Organization's report linking both processed and red meat to increased cancer rates. Dr. Esselstyn also spoke about avoiding oils in the diet , and kept everyone captivated. If you haven't watched the documentary or read Dr. Esselstyn's book, I highly recommend both.

Dr. Lisle discussed the main reasons why we have food cravings and how to help others remove themselves from pleasure traps. His words were brilliant and delivered with humor. He spoke about how we all seek pleasure and avoid pain, all while conserving energy. These points focussed on why we are so inclined to reach for processed foods. I look forward to reading his book (which I got signed!)!
Next came Joel Kahn, who spoke about the links between diabetes and heart disease. Much like Dr. Barnard (from Physicians Committee For Responsible, he linked diabetes to fat in the diet. Both Dr. Lisle and Dr. Kahn reinforced the need to eat foods high in nutritional density, as opposed to how most Americans eat, a high caloric density diet.

Following the speakers, we had amazing cooking demonstrations from Jane, and Ann Esselstyn-authors of the Prevent and Reverse Heart Disease Cookbook, Chef AJ, of eatunproccessed and Chef Darshana Thacker, of DarshanasKitchen, and Chef Del Sroufe. Ann and Jane make plant-based cooking easy, and not threatening for the average person, along with providing hilarious entertainment and chemistry (Ann is Dr. Esselstyn's wife and Jane their daughter)!

Chef AJ added additional humor, powerful energy, and super clean recipe ideas (she even made up the Meet The Esselstyn's Song and others). Chef Darshana inspired us all with the beautiful spices from Indian and Mexican cuisine (shown below), and Chef Del Sroufe added his own humor and easily approachable style.

All speakers were very approachable, listening to many share their remarkable stories of healing and transformation. They inspired, gave hugs and so much of their time.

Ann and Jane Esselstyn

The lunches were outstanding. Not only was it phenomenal to be in a room to a sold-out crowd of 300+ people, but to be able to eat everything and not worry was beyond awesome!

Day one was a massaged kale salad with bean burritos, fresh tomato and mango salsas, and guacamole. The evening's dinner took us to Whole Foods where they made us a bean and rice stew, oil-free slaw, and a chocolate banana pudding.

Day two included at least 14 samples from the cooking demonstrations. If that wasn't enough-lunch was a different kale salad (eat those greens!!!!), along with sweet potato burgers and all the fixings, and a oil-free potato salad. The food did not stop coming! I was inspired to make many new oil-free dishes, as well as to up my intake of dark leafy greens.If you're new to plant-based living, I highly encourage you to check out the speakers I mentioned above. Links to their books and more resources can be found on the Garden Fresh Foodie resource page.

Share with others and spread the love! A huge thank you to all those who made my weekend, and 300+ others, one that inspired me to return home invigorated and ready to share more plant-based love to my community!

Until next week....happy eating! - Jessica from

Related Blog Posts

don't like what you see in the mirror? these 3 things are ruining your skin.

what do these celebrities have in common?

eating your way through diabetes

our favorite plant-based beauty products

5 best summer drinks

breaking up with caffeine

10 ingenious ways to cool your house without ac

debunked: 5 myths about veganism

what successful people eat for lunch

5 tips for plant-based eating while traveling

how to make the most of earth day

7 ways to beat allergies naturally

5 surprising benefits of coconut oil

mushrooms—the vegetable that never was

the 4 best food documentaries you can watch on netflix tonight

best meals of 2017 - blogger edition

how long do vegetables last?

holiday happiness checklist

how to trick your kids out of treats

make meatless monday a routine

mindful eating

5 organic oils for health and beauty

why participate in meatless monday?

american classics redux

four hacks for summer

3 plant-based bbq tips for july 4th

5 tips for traveling plant-based

7 tips for eating less meat

5 ways to care for the planet

10 tips for going plant-based

5 simple ways to cut out dairy

why eating less meat is better for the environment

5 things you might not know about meatless monday, but should.

the all ages cocktail hour

massage that kale

father's day for the earth friendly dad

this memorial day rock the meatless bbq

celebrating mom

8 weeks to summer: kickstart your weight loss

how to manage your allergies

earth day & passover-a day for celebration

attention all humans

meal replacement replacement meal

maple season-yum!

springtime holidays

leaders in plant-based nutrition

beat the spring forward blues

noodles, pasta, spaghetti, hoorah!

time to start your seeds

celebrating national frozen food month

why be meatless?

jane esselstyn on women's heart health

how to survive the super bowl binge

2016 resolution for health

how to stick with your resolutions

this holiday say yes to dessert

meet the esselstyns-they're a plant-based family

tips for busy back to school time

preserving the harvest

zucchini love

junk food day?

trucker takes vegan road to weight loss

lower your cholesterol the easy way. eat more fiber.

strawberries are jammin!

why are we overweight? duh, it's the food!

cool & hydrated as a cucumber

tips for avoiding high cholesterol when eating out

asparagus season

how to survive the summer bbq

pea it out!

it's cinco de mayo-get your bean on

sprouting 101

dine out much? you're increasing your chances of high blood pressure!

a smarter source of energy: geothermal

live long and chive on

get amped for national public health week!

maple sugaring

starting your garden

confused about the new food guidelines? veestro's got you covered!

good news: you control your health care

my thanksgiving secret...

do food labels make your head spin?

losing your mind? try these memory boosting superfoods!