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Howard Jacobson on Staying True to My Mission: PYP 281

Yup, that's me, talking directly to you in this episode.

I wanted to take a break from the guest-interview format because I have a lot on my mind.

Yesterday was my 53rd birthday, and would have been my dad's 100th (he and my mom planned well ;).

I've been thinking about him a lot around this milestone. And I'm on day 3 of a planned 7-day water fast, so my mind is doing all sorts of deep dives that I normally miss because of eating and business.

I wanted to share a bit of my story that I've never shared publicly. It's not dramatic, or amazing, or even particularly unusual. It's just mine, and it's defined who I've become and what I've decided to devote my life to.

It's about my dad, and his early death, and John Robbins, and WellStart. It's about what's shaped my mission, and why WellStart is both a perfect vehicle and a huge challenge for me.

I hope you get something out of it. I'd love to hear your thoughts…

Warmly
Howard

Enjoy, add your voice to the conversation via the comment box below, and please share – that's how we spread our message and spread our roots.

Links

Webinar Replay: The 3 High Hurdles to Weight Loss and Health

Diet for a New America, by John Robbins

The China Study, by T. Colin Campbell, PhD, and Thomas Campbell II, MD

Prevent and Reverse Heart Disease, by Caldwell Esselstyn, MD

Transcript

Read a machine-generated (and therefore riddled with spelling and formatting errors) transcript here:

[spp-transcript]

Download PDF Transcript

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Announcements

The next WellStart Health cohort starts on August 13, 2018. Find out more and reverse your space at WellStartHealth.com.

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Music

The Plant Yourself Podcast theme music, “Dance of Peace (Sabali Don),” is generously provided by Will Ridenour, a kora player from North Carolina who has trained with top Senegalese musicians.

It can be found on his first CD, titled Will Ridenour.

You can learn about Will, listen to more tracks, and buy music on his website, WillRidenour.com.

Gratitudes

Thanks to Plant Yourself podcast patrons
– Kim Harrison
– Lynn McLellan
– Anthony Dissen
– Brittany Porter
– Dominic Marro
– Barbara Whitney
– Tammy Black
– Amy Good
– Amanda Hatherly
– Mary Jane Wheeler
– Ellen Kennelly
– Melissa Cobb
– Rachel Behrens
– Christine Nielsen
– Tina Scharf
– Tina Ahern
– Jen Vilkinofsky
– David Byczek
– Michele X
– Elspeth Feldman
– Viktoriya Dolomanova
– Leah Stolar
– Allan Kristensen
– Colleen Peck
– Michele Landry
– Jozina
– Julianne Rowland
– Stu Dolnick
– Sara Durkacs
– Kelly Cameron
– Wayne Pedersen
– Leanne Peterson
– Janet Selby
– Claire Adams
– Tom Fronczak
– Jeannette Benham
– Gila Lacerte
– David Donohue
– Blair Seibert
– Doron Avizov
– Gio and Carolyn Argentati
– Jodi Friesner
– RuthAnn Funderburk
– Mischa Rosen
– Michael Worobiec
– Alicia Lemus
– Val Linnemann
– Nick Harper
– Stephanie Halmes
– Bandana Chawla
– Martha Bergner
– Nikole Ramsay
– Susan Ahmad
– Molly Levine
– The Inscrutable Harry R
– Susan Laverty the Panda Vegan
– Craig Covic
– Adam Scharf
– Karen Bury
– Heather Morgan
– Ashley Corcoran
– Kelly Michiya
– DeAnne Norton
– Bonnie Lynch of Plant Happy Oregon
– Sabine Kurtzhals
– Nigel Davies
– Marian Blum
– Teresa Kopel
– Shell Routledge
– Julian Watkins
– Brid O'Connell
– Brian Sheridan
– Shannon Herschman
– Cate Rolls
– Linda Ayotte
– Julie Lang
– Holm Hedegaard
– Isa Tousignant
– Connie Haneline
– Erin Greer
– Alicia Davis
– AvIvA Lael
– Heather O'Connor
– Carollynne Jensen
– Sheri Orlekoski of Plant Powered for Health
– Karen Smith
– Scott Mirani
– Karen and Joe Crabtree
– Tanya Lewis
– Kirby Burton
– Theresa Carrell
– Kevin Macaulay
– Elizabeth Rothschild
– Kelly Baker Miracle
– Ann Jesse
– Sheryl Dwyer
– Jenny Hazelton
– Valerie Pelletier
– Peter W Evans
– Colleen Harrison
– Justine Divett
– Joshua Sommermeyer
– Dennis Bird
– Darby Kelly
– Lori Fanney
for your generous support of the podcast.

Disclosure

This post may contain amazon affiliate links. I may receive amazon gift certificates from your actions on such links.

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Music

The Plant Yourself Podcast theme music, “Dance of Peace (Sabali Don),” is generously provided by Will Ridenour, a kora player from North Carolina who has trained with top Senegalese musicians.

It can be found on his first CD, titled Will Ridenour.

You can learn about Will, listen to more tracks, and buy music on his website, WillRidenour.com.

Gratitudes

Thanks to Plant Yourself podcast patrons – Kim Harrison – Lynn McLellan – Anthony Dissen – Brittany Porter – Dominic Marro – Barbara Whitney – Tammy Black – Amy Good – Amanda Hatherly – Mary Jane Wheeler – Ellen Kennelly – Melissa Cobb – Rachel Behrens – Christine Nielsen – Tina Scharf – Tina Ahern – Jen Vilkinofsky – David Byczek – Michele X – Elspeth Feldman – Leah Stolar – Allan Kristensen – Colleen Peck – Michele Landry – Jozina – Sara Durkacs – Kelly Cameron – Wayne Pedersen – Janet Selby – Claire Adams – Tom Fronczak – Jeannette Benham – Gila Lacerte – David Donohue – Blair Seibert – Doron Avizov – Gio and Carolyn Argentati – Jodi Friesner – RuthAnn Funderburk – Mischa Rosen – Michael Worobiec – AvIvA Lael – Alicia Lemus – Val Linnemann – Nick Harper – Bandana Chawla – Martha Bergner – Susan Ahmad – Molly Levine – The Inscrutable Harry R – Susan Laverty the Panda Vegan – Craig Covic – Adam Scharf – Karen Bury – Heather Morgan – Kelly Michiya – DeAnne Norton – Bonnie Lynch of Plant Happy Oregon – Sabine Kurtzhals – Nigel Davies – Marian Blum – Teresa Kopel – Julian Watkins – Brid O'Connell – Shannon Herschman – Linda Ayotte – Holm Hedegaard – Isa Tousignant – Connie Haneline – Erin Greer – Alicia Davis – Heather O'Connor – Carollynne Jensen – Sheri Orlekoski of Plant Powered for Health – Karen Smith – Scott Mirani – Karen and Joe Crabtree – Tanya Lewis – Kirby Burton – Theresa Carrell – Kevin Macaulay – Elizabeth Rothschild – Ann Jesse – Sheryl Dwyer – Jenny Hazelton – Valerie Pelletier – Peter W Evans – Colleen Harrison – Justine Divett – Joshua Sommermeyer – Dennis Bird – Darby Kelly – Lori Fanney – Linnea Lundquist – Valarie Hummel – Emily Iaconelli – Levi Wallach – Rosamonde McAtee – Dan Pokorney – Stephen Leinin – Patty DeMartino – Mike and Donna Kartz – Deanne Bishop – Bilberry Elf – Günter Schmid – Marjorie Lewis – Kelly Moulden – Tricia Adams – Ian Cramer – Nancy Sheldon – Lindsey Bashore – Gunn Marit Hagen – Tracey Gulledge – Lara Hedin – Meg from Mamasezz – Rachelle Kennedy – Diana Goldman – Stacey Stokes – Ben Savage – Michael K – Hollie Butler – David Hughes -Coni Rodgers – Claire England – Sally Robertson – Parham Ganchi – Amy Dailey – Brian Tourville – Mark Jeffrey Johnson – Josie Dempsey – Caryn Schmitt – Pamela Hayden – Emily Perryman – Olga Szydarowska – Allison Corbett – Richard Stone – Lauren Vaught of Edible Musings – Erin Hastey – Sean Owens – Sagar Naik – Erika Piedra – Danielle Roberts – Michael Leuchten – Sarah Johnson – for your generous support of the podcast.

Disclosure

This post may contain amazon affiliate links. I may receive compensation from your actions on such links. It don't cost you a dime, tho.

13 comments on “Howard Jacobson on Staying True to My Mission: PYP 281

  1. Karin says:

    Felt I knew your Dad after this podcast. Hope you are doing well after fasting. Was unable to get on the app to hear your webinar for big change. Will you replay in in a different format?
    Be well, Howard

    1. Howard says:

      Sorry that the webinar didn’t let you in! You can listen/watch the replay here: https://wellstarthealth.com/posts/the-three-high-hurdles-to-weight-loss-and-health-webinar

  2. Shari A Schmidt says:

    I lost my dad just a couple of months ago. He was 77. He died after having open heart surgery (a triple bypass) having kidney issues and pneumonia. He also had Parkinson’s disease and Rheumatoid Arthritis and clots in his legs. He too was a paddleball, volleyball, handball, tennis player. Always ‘fit’. We also grew up eating lots of Jewish food including lots of meat and fat and the treats of Entemann’s products. You didn’t know back then how to help your dad, but I did. And I tried. So so hard. For 5 years I tried to get him to pay attention to his diet and change what he put in his mouth. But he refused to listen. So, don’t think that having the info back then would have saved your dad. He might have listened, but more than likely he either wouldn’t believe it (doctors know much more than we do) or wouldn’t give up his favorite delights. Sorry that your dad wasn’t around to be a grandfather for your children but it sounds like he was a wonderful man. Happy birthday to your dad and to you! Hope to see you soon. Know that even though you couldn’t help your dad, you are helping so many others.

  3. Harry says:

    This was an amazing episode, Howard! Thanks for sharing all those details about your dad and your experience of him. And thanks for spending an episode articulating your perspectives on and passion for a plant-based approach to health. I found it inspiring to hear it all at once as I move towards my own plant-based mission. And Happy Birthday! 😀

  4. Kathryn says:

    Happy Birthday Howard. Thank you for this raw, honest, and
    motivating episode. Hearing experts spew facts can get boring.
    Hearing someone speak from his heart is connecting and
    inspiring. Thank you for all you do. May you be blessed
    and may you prosper in all ways.

  5. Lori says:

    Great episode, Howard. I felt your sincerity in your voice and in your story. I lost me dad when I was 19, my mother when I was 29. Both to lifestyle disease. I watched them suffer. I watched them try to be good patients. With both we ended up just, “waiting to die”. I’d like to think that both of them would have been receptive if I knew then what I know now. But I don’t know. I have made choices in my ow
    n life to not pull the trigger to my genetic gun, but I watch my remaining family members proceed to kill themselves. I love them, but I’m terrified. You inspire me to keep trying, and to reach out to ANYONE who wants a better life. The power if whole plants!

  6. Robyn Chuter says:

    Thank you Howard. This episode was a tour de force. So many elements of your story echoed mine, that it was quite eerie. My Dad was also 47 when I was born. Like your father, he had a temper and struggled with emotional expression, but he had a rock-solid sense of social justice and raised me to do what was right, not what was popular. I lost him to a heart attack when he was just 11 days shy of his 75th birthday. Like Shari who commented above, I already knew what to do to help him (Diet for a New America had fallen into my hands when I was about 22, while I was studying naturopathy, and Dean Ornish’s Program for Reversing Heart Disease followed hard on its heels), but Dad wasn’t willing to change his ways. I too was left without closure and with a mountain of regrets that I had not figured out how to ‘sell’ him on the dietary change that almost certainly would have kept him alive for many more years, so he could enjoy being a grandfather to my 2 children, the first of whom was born 2 years after he died.
    Grief is an alchemical process. Our anger, guilt, regret, disappointment and sadness go into the fire, and are transformed into a vision for how we can best serve the world in the time that we have on earth, and the determination to realise that vision. I would not be the health practitioner that I am today if I had not suffered the crushing blow of losing my father, and you would not be the trail-blazing wellness warrior that you are, either.
    Happy birthday to you and Joel.

  7. Steve G says:

    Thanks Howard! I am a brand new listener and this was my first podcast listen. It was so awesome, to the point, honest and heartfelt. I had a similar relationship with my dad who passed at age 68 when I was 25. He passed away from emphysema but I could feel the emotions you were describing. It is very refreshing to listen to someone who doesn’t have an agenda and I will be listening to past and future podcasts with enthusiasm. thanks again!

    1. Howard says:

      Steve, thanks for your kind words, and welcome!

      I’m sorry about your dad – emphysema must have been an awful thing to live with and die from.

      Be well!

  8. Val Ferg says:

    Now 3 years into my plant based journey… this beautiful episode did SO much to reinvigorate me and inspire me to become the example I need to be in order to reach the people I love. Through your podcast interviews, you have already helped me in so many ways, Howard, but this episode was nothing short of heroic in my opinion. Your Dad would be bursting with pride right now if he could see how many people’s lives you are changing for the better. Happy Birthday, mentor extraordinaire.

  9. Ann Jesse says:

    Hi Howard,
    I just listened to episode 281 which was such a lovely tribute to your father, and it spoke to my heart.
    I have aspired to a vegan lifestyle for about a year and half now and have been an avid listener and supporter of PlantYourself for awhile now.
    Back in February of this year, I lost MY father, Buck, at the age of 73. He, like your dad, was an incredible athlete as well as a servant of his fellow man – helping people to earn their GEDs and feeding the homeless on Saturdays. Buck had a cycling accident in 2017 that he never seemed to recover from. After fighting cellulitis for several months with a battery of antibiotics, his immune system shut down. During the last week of his life, we discovered he also had a bone marrow disorder which contributed to his demise. That, combined with sepsis and pneumonia, was the cocktail of ails that took him.

    I too wonder what I could have done to educate him of my findings re: the benefits to myself and our planet thru a plant-based diet. But instead of wondering what could have been, I will work toward what CAN be done. My badges of honor are a sense of peace and control that I’ve never felt before.

    That peace and control was particularly pronounced earlier this week when I received lab results from my annual checkup. Absolutely every measurement was near perfect. I am 50 years old, and this is the first time in my adult life that I can boast an HDL/LDL ratio that is in the healthy range. I have always had high cholesterol and for years just chalked it up to genetics.

    So I guess what I’m saying is this. Though I can’t share my findings with my dad on this earth, I can honor his memory by sharing my findings and health wealth with the world around me. I know you are doing the same.

    Thank you for all you do, Howard! God Bless!

  10. Julie Bodnar says:

    Happy belated birthday Howard! I finally had time to listen to your podcast – it was great to hear more about you and how your mission was influenced by your father’s examples of courage & living his beliefs. His voice came through loud and clear through you – a beautiful legacy! This podcast was particularly helpful to me because the last few weeks I’ve been feeling like I’m spinning my wheels trying to build a nonprofit plant-based support community where I live. Your talk inspired me to get at it and keep spreading word about the lifestyle that I know is best in so many ways. Can’t give up. Thanks again!

    1. Howard says:

      Thanks, Julie! So great to hear about your community work. Little seeds everywhere 🙂

      One of the reasons I chose the name “Plant Yourself” 🙂

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