The Daily Beet

13 Feb Meet Katherine!

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Hello Everyone!

My name is Katherine and I am thrilled to tell you that I am one of the new college interns for Engine 2! I am 19 years old and currently studying Business at The Ohio State University.  Adopting a whole foods plant-based lifestyle and becoming plant-strong has completely changed my life.  I went from dreading any physical activity to becoming a personal trainer, and a convenience food eater to finding my rightful place in the kitchen.  I’d like to share my personal journey to becoming plant-strong.

When I was young, I was diagnosed with multiple severe food allergies including dairy and eggs. On top of this, I had horrible environmental and seasonal allergies. This led to 16 years of taking a multitude of daily medications. I constantly felt horrible, and rarely, if ever, felt good. I missed so much school and I visited the doctor at least once a month. For the longest time, no one could find out what was wrong with me. If the solution wasn’t another doctor, it was another test. I ended up being on a minimum of 5-6 antibiotics a year. At age 16, I weighed well over 220 pounds.

Shortly after my 16th birthday, after biting into a raw piece of chicken at a popular Asian restaurant, I made the choice to become a vegetarian. I had always played with the idea of becoming a vegetarian, but never thought I could fully commit. Not even 3 months later, I became vegan, but a very unhealthy vegan. I remember walking the isles at Whole Foods Market and filling the cart with “healthy” vegan junk.  The following New Years Eve, my family and I brought in the New Year by watching the documentary Forks Over Knives. Even before the credits rolled, we immediately knew that we were going to change our diets forever. The next day, my parents and I switched to a whole-foods plant-based lifestyle.

Having grown up in the kitchen with my grandmother, I was immediately drawn to the cooking aspect. I loved how creative I could be in the kitchen!  My journey to becoming a healthier person just kept rolling. A desire grew within me to learn all I could about being plant-strong. I thoroughly researched any information I could get my hands on. I immersed myself in books, DVDs, blogs, newsletters, and documentaries.  The summer before my senior year in high school, I successfully completed T. Colin Campbell’s certification course in Plant-Based Nutrition. My interest simply kept growing. In the spring of my senior year, I became a NASM-Certified Personal Trainer. One month later, I successfully completed a NASM Weight Loss Specialist certification course.  Currently, I am in the process of becoming a Registered Vinyasa Yoga Instructor.

Thus far, my personal triumphs include losing over 100 pounds, eliminating 90% of my medication and most importantly feeling fantastic! I have also helped my mother lose nearly 100 pounds, my father has eliminated his blood pressure medication and is no longer pre-diabetic, and my grandparents have taken on the plant-strong lifestyle.

I am elated to have the opportunity to be an Engine 2 intern!  I’m looking forward to sharing my knowledge and bringing new ideas to the table!


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Engine 2 Team
Engine 2 Team

The Engine 2 Team is dedicated to helping you become plant-strong! Each of us are on the plant-strong journey right along side of you!

  • Alina Schintee
    Posted at 08:39h, 13 February

    That is so amazing! Congrats on your acomplishments. They will be a motivator for many including myself. God Bless!

  • Ami Mackey
    Posted at 08:43h, 13 February

    So glad to have you as part of our team Katherine! Welcome to E2!

  • Mattye Lee Thompson
    Posted at 08:48h, 13 February

    Welcome Katherine! What a journey you have had!! Brava! I look forward to your updates:)

  • TheDreadedWoodenSpoon
    Posted at 08:55h, 13 February

    Excellent! Well done, and thank you for sharing your inspirational story!

  • Tara :)
    Posted at 08:58h, 13 February

    Wow, awesome, Katherine!! I look forward to seeing what wonderful things you bring to the E2 community! 🙂

  • Coozoe
    Posted at 08:59h, 13 February

    Congratulations on a great success. It’s heartening to learn that you also motivated your family to whole foods plant based eating. I believe this will be the principal conversion method in the future.

  • BJ Swingle
    Posted at 09:10h, 13 February

    Very awesome and inspiring story.

  • Daniel Mendieta
    Posted at 09:18h, 13 February

    Amazing, awesome testimony! God bless:)

  • Nancy
    Posted at 09:25h, 13 February

    Hello and welcome aboard E2!

  • Kelsey Steele
    Posted at 10:13h, 13 February

    That’s really awesome and inspiring. Congratulations!

  • Elisa
    Posted at 10:21h, 13 February

    Wow! I’m so inspired by you (and your family’s) story! Thank you!

  • Alison
    Posted at 10:41h, 13 February

    I look forward to hearing more of your journey, you’re an inspiration to all!

  • Devin Barnes
    Posted at 10:43h, 13 February

    Wow! You are so inspiring! That’s awesome you are getting certified in so many different things, instead of planning to “one day get around to it” you are making your dreams a reality already. Very motivating to see another young person eating plant-based.

  • Leah
    Posted at 11:01h, 13 February

    Wow Katherine! Thank you for the lovely introduction: what an inspiration! I love that your family is now 3 generations plant strong! That is sooooo cool! How marvelous that now you are more and more in tune with your body each day and feeling great! Enjoy the vinyasa yoga journey, I’m on my own and it totally adds to the plant-based wonderfulness of a healthy life. 🙂

  • Isabel
    Posted at 11:02h, 13 February


  • Leah
    Posted at 11:04h, 13 February

    One more thing: you are GLOWING with health!

  • T-Bone Turiya
    Posted at 11:16h, 13 February

    You are amazing! Thanks for sharing your inspiring story!

  • James Straub
    Posted at 12:23h, 13 February

    Can’t wait to follow and hear more good news from you, Katherine. More importantly, I would love to see you get your extended family involved, too.

  • Hackchick
    Posted at 13:48h, 13 February

    You are amazing. I have been a vegetarian for 20 years and a vegan for the last 3 years. I am 60 but feel like 20.

  • Mike Lefevre
    Posted at 13:59h, 13 February

    Although I have read the ” Forks over Knives ” book, I am currently taking the Engine 2 cooking class & challenge! So Mz. Katherine YOU ARE MY TEACHER!!!!!!!!
    Good going & Congratulations on your success’s!

  • Harriet
    Posted at 14:53h, 13 February

    You go girl! I see a bright exciting future for you! 🙂

  • kittygirl
    Posted at 20:12h, 13 February

    That is an awesome life changing story! Good luck and stay Plant strong for the rest of us still working on it!

  • Jerry Aman
    Posted at 08:04h, 14 February

    I think it is really wonderful that your family is also going the Plant Strong way of life. You all are a model for the rest of us.

  • just me
    Posted at 13:15h, 14 February

    Hurray for you! I did a similar thing at 16, when I became a vegetarian. It is hard to be different, so I waffled back and forth for years. Please, stick with it; your health will thank you in the long run…especially if you are a healthy plant-centered vegan. You look fantastic!

  • Devin
    Posted at 05:04h, 23 February

    Such a great and inspiring story. I’m so proud of what you and your family accomplished!

  • Devin
    Posted at 05:04h, 23 February

    How does one become a college intern?

  • Ashley
    Posted at 12:38h, 21 May

    So inspiring!!! Thank you for sharing!

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