At 14 years old, I decided food was “bad”. I did anything I could to avoid it, get rid of it, and fool myself into thinking I didn’t need it.

Melinda_Nelson.JPGMy battle with my eating disorder went on for years. Throughout that time, I learned about nutrition, but I never felt connected to food. Eventually, I began eating enough food to restore my physical health, but continued to struggle to build my relationship with food.

At 21, I watched Food Inc. and immediately stopped eating meat. It felt like I was seeing the world clearly for the first time. I remember thinking, “This decision makes absolute sense. How could I have eaten meat before? I love animals so much.”  I started paying more attention to what I was putting in (and on) my body, and I finally started to enjoy eating again.

I headed out on a journey of self discovery in 2013 and relocated to Thailand. I lived in Chiang Rai teaching English at a Montessori school, traveling, and practicing yoga on a regular basis. After a year and a half, I decided to take all the lessons I learned with me back to the US.

Soon after returning, I moved to Austin, Texas and felt inspired to try out a raw vegan lifestyle (Earthlings was a large source of that inspiration).

I have been a high raw vegan since November 2014. Through a combination of yoga/exercise, veganism, and support from many beautiful people in my life,  I have been able to heal from my eating disorder. Not only do I love food again, I also have a very positive relationship with food and my body.

I know I’m not done learning yet, but I am so thankful to be where I am today- physically, mentally, and spiritually. I created this space as a way for me to share my journey and help people become more aware of our connection- to ourselves, to our food, and to each other.