We will allow this TESTIMONIAL to tell the story…..
Jill’s “Walk on the Beach” vegan retreat was truly a life changing experience for me! My daughter and I attended her retreat in September of 2020 and it was just the inspiration I needed to change my way of eating and change my life!! My daughter had been following a plant-based, vegan lifestyle for a few months already and she found Vegan Gal’s Michigan retreat on line. She wanted to learn even more about a whole food, plant based way of eating/cooking and she knew I needed to make some healthy changes in order to improve my overall health, lower my blood sugars and lose weight.
My A1C was 10.1 and my doctor had threatened me with insulin if I wasn’t able to bring my A1C down to a healthier level on my own. My daughter and I decided to attend Jill’s retreat together. In addition to it being a wonderful mother/daughter get-away, it was just what I needed to rejuvenate, relax, learn, take time for myself, eat healthy and get my life and eating back on track. I knew in my heart that whole food, plant-based eating was the healthiest way to go, but I definitely needed a jump start!
Jill provided all of our meals and snacks on this five day retreat and everything was delicious and filling. We had no worries about buying food or groceries and were just told to bring ourselves! All of the food was healthy, tasty and satisfying! We never went away hungry and, at times, Iwas so full, I couldn’t eat the next meal I was served! That was a rare experience for me! I discovered that when I ate high fiber, low fat, nutritious foods, my body became more satisfied.
I wasn’t hungry between meals and my cravings disappeared. We enjoyed quality time with like-minded people and all of us in attendance received valuable educational information about whole food, plant-based eating as we relaxed around Jill’s kitchen table. We discussed mindfulness, spirituality, and watched educational and entertaining documentaries about the health benefits of whole food, plant-based eating. We had cooking classes and participated in preparing some of our own meals. We learned recipes for easy sauces, foods, desserts and more about ingredients/equipment that would help make our food preparation and planning easier.
It lessened the overwhelm I had always felt when it came to making changes in my eating habits and preparing new kinds of food. It wasn’t so hard as I had imagined once I had done it for myself with Jill’s help and encouragement! We made tasty meals, snacks, sauces and desserts that were unprocessed, oil free, dairy free, meat free, egg free and contained no fat or added refined sugar. We ate lots of veggies, beans, leafy greens, rice, potatoes, pasta, fruits, nuts, seeds and whole grains. I couldn’t believe how totally full I always felt while watching my blood sugar numbers and my weight go down! It was unbelievable! I could eat potatoes and still lose weight! Wow! That was life changing in itself! We walked every single day, watched gorgeous sunsets on the beach, laughed, even sang together and enjoyed field trips to a Farmer’s Market and health food store. I felt better, happy, energized and rested. Our accommodations in beautiful South Haven were beautiful and Jill was a gracious and lovely hostess in every way.
I have lost 20 lbs in the last 4 months and my A1C was 8.0 at my last doctor visit in December. It came down 2 whole points in three months! No insulin for this girl! Most importantly, this is the first time I’ve been able to change my bad habits and stick with a healthy eating plan for so long without being miserable. I’m so happy to have discovered Jill and the opportunity to learn about Dr. McDougall’s “Starch Solution” life plan and a way of eating that I actually enjoy! My daughter told me honestly that she doubted I would stick with this way of eating, and both she and I are pleasantly surprised! It’s a great feeling! I weigh less than i have weighed in 30 years and my journey is ongoing!
Jill continues to check in on me, sends me great recipes and I even send her some of my own. I feel I have made a friend as well as a mentor. I’m ready to go back to Michigan again soon! Thank you, Jill, for your inspiration and information! I highly recommend this amazing retreat! It will definitely inspire you to “change your food, change your life”!