Monthly Archives

May 2017

Organizing LexVeg Fest | Lexington for Health, Lexington, KY

By | Group Leader Articles, Pod News, VegFest | No Comments

May 16, 2017

Today, PPC’s Katya Trent, Director of Pod Operations & Development Support, is here to share her VegFest experience. Katya organized the first VegFest in Lexington, Kentucky in 2016. Since then, her Pod, Lexington for Health, merged with the Plant Medicine/Mindful Medicine Pod.

Organizing the first LexVegFest was a great honor and opportunity. I met and worked with many wonderful people, some of whom became my close friends. We invited our community to come together and celebrate a plant-based lifestyle. We offered delicious plant-based foods, educational presentations, exhibits, yoga, and guided meditation. The day of the event was like a dream come true.

As one of our organizers noted, “It is all connected. When you eat calming food, you have calming thoughts.” I absolutely agree with that statement. Eight years ago, when my husband and I embraced a plant-based diet, we felt a sense of joy and liberation. For the first VegFest in Lexington, KY, I found initial support from our local Vegan Society and scheduled the first meeting for January 14, 2016.

As it often happens, the excitement and enthusiasm of the first couple of meetings faded and only a handful of people continued working with me till the end. We had a number of “moments of truth” where doubt and discouragement threatened to postpone and even cancel the event. Overall, a positive energy and genuine desire to share the knowledge of the benefits of a plant-based lifestyle carried us through.

Our local LexVegFest arrived at an opportune time in an air of curiosity about the plant-based lifestyle. On October 1st, 2016, World Vegetarian Day, Lexington was ready for a VegFest. With over 2000 people interested on FaceBook, the community enthusiasm exceeded my expectations. We had over 1500 people attend the event. Most vendors either sold out or nearly sold out. Dr. Debora Tallio, our keynote speaker, held an audience so captivated that after her presentation, she was invited to speak at a number of other events about the benefits of the whole foods plant-based diet.

Organizing the first LexVegFest was an amazing and humbling experience. With the support of our community, we plan to make it an annual affair. We hope it will grow and reach more people in Kentucky and beyond to help improve our health, as well as the health of the planet and animals. We also hope to inspire local entrepreneurs to look into offering more plant-based options. I look forward to a day when my husband and I can go out to eat at a 100% plant-based restaurant in Lexington, KY.

The plant-based support groups launched by Dr. Tallio and myself after the PlantPure Nation premier merged into one group and continue to meet. Every month there is a potluck and discussion on practical steps and ideas around the concept of plant-based nutrition. The support group’s focus is on sharing experiences and supporting members. Community is incredibly important when embracing and sustaining new habits.

  Our meeting in November 2016 was very special because Dr. John McDougall joined the group via a video call. It was exciting to have an opportunity to learn directly from Dr. John McDougall, a pioneer in the field of plant-based nutrition as it relates to health!

For more information about the Lexington for Health & Plant Medicine/Mindful Medicine Pods, visit their Facebook page and Facebook group.


To contact Katya, please email:

We love seeing the ways you are creating PlantPure communities in your area! Send an email to if you would like to share news, updates and events.

By Katya Trent, Director of Pod Operations & Development Support
Edited by Kristyn Helm, Digital Marketing & Communications Manager

Dentist Advocates Systemic Health | Plant Empowered Redding, Redding, CA

By | Doctors, Group Leader Articles, Pod News | No Comments

May 9, 2017 

The PlantPure Pod group, Plant Empowered Redding, held a screening of the new documentary film, What The Health, on March 21st this year. The event was attended by 55 members and is just one example of how the Pod is leading the way in their community of Redding, CA, in a movement group leader Dr. Mike Nelson, DDS, calls, “systemic health.”

Dr. Nelson is a local dentist who began his journey into the whole food, plant-based lifestyle after watching Forks Over Knives and reading The China Study by Dr. T. Colin Campbell, recommended to him by a friend, Dr. James Bennie. After experiencing the immense benefits of the lifestyle and witnessing its ability to help his patients suffering from oral health issues, Dr. Nelson started a group called McDougall Mondays with Dr. Nelson in 2012.

“My purpose is to empower people to own their oral health and it has grown to become a mission of empowering people to own their total health,” Dr. Nelson says. “Through dentistry and an understanding of the consequences, the oral connection to systemic health, we have an opportunity to see, diagnose, teach, and ultimately change people’s lives.”

Now, Dr. Nelson offers an evening extension of the group through the Pod, Plant Empowered Redding. The group is very active, hosting a variety of fun and informative events biweekly. In the past, the group has held potlucks, visited a local grocery store, screened PlantPure Nation, and even Skyped with Dr. Klaper.

Both Dr. Nelson and Dr. Shanhong Lu, an internist practicing in Mt. Shasta, spoke at the March 21st event. Dr. Lu, who leads the Mt. Shasta Integrative Medicine Pod, shared her personal journey from China 25 years ago to the U.S. Both doctors were available for a question and answer period for those attending.

Plant Empowered Redding benefits and supports many local residents dealing with chronic health conditions by providing information and resources through the Pod meetings.

“We have people with MS who have benefited from referrals to the McDougall 10 day program,” Dr. Nelson explains. “Others with RA, GERD, cancer, high cholesterol, and afib attend, as well.”

Dr. Nelson says participants are seeing improvements in their health. He is adamant about providing people with proper nutrition education.

Since the movie screening in March, Plant Empowered Redding has hosted a Taco Tuesday potluck and a presentation of Dr. McDougall’s book, The Starch Solution.

If you live in or near Redding, CA, and would like to join this group or find out about an upcoming event, you can do so by visiting the Plant Empowered Redding Facebook page or contacting Dr. Mike Nelson:

To find out more about Dr. Nelson’s practice, visit his website:

We love seeing the ways you are creating PlantPure communities in your area! Send an email to if you would like to share news, updates and events.

By Kristyn Helm, Digital Marketing & Communications Manager