FEATURE: Gary Whitaker

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It all started one day when I was cruising Netflix and I came across the documentary Food Inc. It all started to make sense why so many people in my family were sick and died way before their time. I had three uncles that died before the age of 65. That was young In my opinion. My grandma on my mother's side died at 64. My grandmother on my father's side also died before 65. After seeing those members of my family leaving the planet, I knew that I had to do something to change the direction that we were going in.

While I was in college, I took a nutrition course and this also gave me some basic knowledge about food. I started to develop an interest in people that were living beyond 100+ years old and I started to pay attention to their diets. So, since my goal was to live to 250+ I started to pay closer attention to what was going into my body and the impact it was having. From the day I watched Food Inc, it gave me enough data to realize that we don’t need meat to survive. I took it a step further because I realized that I get joy from seeing people in good health, so I created my own personal training business in Oakland, California called Plant-Based Fitness. I also found out that there are not a lot of trainers who know how to educate their clients on losing weight and gaining muscle on a plant-based diet. 

Social Justice

I worked in schools in east Oakland, California and I taught in an after-school program teaching 3rd, 4th and 5th-grade kids about exercise and nutrition. The kids would always request to come to my class. I had young black children eating raw pasta and coming back for seconds. That leads me to believe that the issue resides in the adults because there are no kids buying groceries at the store. So from a social justice standpoint, we need to change the adults and then the kids will receive the benefits of generational health. 

Racism

Dealing with race and food is an interesting topic. The one thing I see is that in almost every black community that has been economically depressed, there are large amounts of liquor stores and gas stations. This directly contributes to the lack of fresh and healthy foods in these communities. It should be a crime to have that many liquor stores in a square mile. 

Animal Oppression

I believe that we all can exist on the planet without looking at certain animals as food. I always say to people there are 250,000 edible plants on Earth. It is up to us to find new and flavorful ways to enjoy life.

Social Media

Instagram: Plantbfit1
Facebook Page: https://www.facebook.com/djwrecckdaplantbase?ref=bookmarks (you might need a FB account to see this)
Plant-Based Fitness Gym Page: https://www.facebook.com/pg/Plantbfitness/about/?ref=page_internal
 

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