I often get asked why I have chosen a plant-based, whole foods diet.

The answer for me is simple: for my life and health.

There is a history of heart disease, cancer, stroke and diabetes in my family.

Animal products contribute to things like heart disease and stroke. Eating more whole foods and vegetables are said to help with cancer prevention. Eating well and exercise help me to keep diabetes at bay.

But my real motivation is this: I want to be around to watch my grandchildren grow up.

I lost my paternal grandfather when I was two – cancer.

I lost my maternal grandmother when I was in eighth grade – an accident.

I lost my paternal grandmother when I was a senior in high school – cancer.

I lost my maternal grandfather when I was a freshman in college – cancer.

I have many friends whose grandparents are still living and an active part of their lives. I loved my grandparents and loved the time I had with them, but it wasn’t enough.

My kids have already lost one of their grandparents.

My theory about my health is that if there is something I can do to keep myself healthy and even potentially prevent disease, it is worth it so I can be around for my kids and their kids.

Yes, there are always things that could still happen – accidents, cancer, and more – but I can do the things that are in my power to do for my overall health and longevity.

Not to mention, my body is the temple of the Lord and I am called to care for it.

Not everyone shares my philosophy of health. Some say whatever is gonna happen is gonna happen and they can’t do anything to stop it. And maybe that is true.

But if there is even a small chance that I can do something to keep me healthy for longer, I am going to do it.

What do you think?