Today, we want to introduce you to plant-strong firefighter, Joel. Joel took charge of his health and has started to change the way his department eats! We are going to ask Joel to guest blog from time to time, and hopefully share some of his tasty recipe creations!
My weight has always fluctuated as a child and well into my mid-twenties. I’m the youngest of four children and my mother was a single parent. I was fed a conventional diet with the traditional Sunday “brunch” special consisting of the oversized French bread stuffed with mayonnaise, ham, bacon, eggs, cheese and chocolate milk on the side. Growing up Hispanic, I was no stranger to fried foods, meat and dairy. After many attempts of failed diets and point counting I decided to watch “Forks Over Knives” and “Engine 2 Diet”. After watching the documentaries, it made complete health sense to transition to a Plant-Based Diet.
Within my department, I am viewed as physically fit and very active. I graduated from the Fire Academy at 175 pounds and managed to reach 214 pounds at my heaviest because I succumbed to traditional Firehouse meals and snacks. After transitioning to a Plant-Based diet, my dietary habits carried over into the firehouse. My shift mates progressively became interested in what I was eating. As I became much leaner, much more active and routinely cooked food for myself that