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A late-stage ovarian cancer survivor has spoken out about the role a plant-based diet has played in her long-term recovery from the illness.

Sally A. Lipsky, a plant-based educator, speaker, and author of Beyond Cancer: The Powerful Effect of Plant-Based Eating, shared her story in a video shared by advocacy organization Million Dollar Vegan (MDV), which encourages and supports people to sign its 31-day pledge and give a plant-based diet a go, giving them a free Vegan Starter Kit.

Lipsky made a video with the organization talking about her diagnosis, treatment, and how finding plant-based nutrition changed her life.

‘A wake-up call’

She says: “12 years ago is I got a very rude wake-up call. I was shockingly diagnosed with late-stage ovarian cancer. And I’d always tell women, this was one month after a clean bill of health. As we know, it’s not a good diagnosis, late-stage ovarian, because it’s often, it comes back and it’s often resistant to chemotherapy.

“So I immediately had surgery and chemotherapy, but I did feel like a time bomb waiting for the cancer to return. I felt I had no control over my body.”

‘The power of food’

Lipsky then found the book Anticancer: The New Way of Life by David Servan-Schreiber, which she says ‘opened her’ eyes to the power of food’. This led to her doing more reading and research, attending conferences and workshops, and getting a certificate in plant-based nutrition.

“All of which gave me a continued sense of empowerment,” says Lipski. “I started to feel like I had some control and I wasn’t so, so anxious before each test and each scan.

“So it’s been 12 years and I have not had a recurrence. I have certainly outlived the survival rate for late-stage cancer.”

Your ‘why’

According to Lipsky, you have to have a sense of a ‘why’; she highlights the importance of plant-based eating and how it helps physical, emotional, and cognitive health, as well as how a plant-based diet is better for the planet and animals.

She adds: “Don’t wait until a health crisis, number one but that’s hard to tell people to do but number two is if you’re in a health crisis, you can do it.

“Because I am here to help others, not just cancer patients but other people who want the information ’cause you’re not gonna get it from your healthcare providers. I had to dig for it. I tell ya, I did to dig for this and other people shouldn’t have to dig.”