Name: Alona Beasley
Age: 35
Occupation: Copyright Coordinator at XanEdu Publishing and Culinary Arts Student, Sullivan University
Location: Louisville, KY
Website: LaLa’s Land

How long have you been vegetarian? And what inspired your journey?

I went vegetarian on April 13, 2011 for several reasons.  One, as of this year, I had reached the largest I have ever weighed. Two, my cholesterol was around 315 the first part of this year. Three, overall health reasons. Not only were my weight and cholesterol a factor, but I am an avid believer that your overall health can be reversed due to proper diet and exercise. My mother and all of my maternal grandparents have passed away from cancer and I do not want to be that statistic.

Has vegetarianism enhanced your health? Why or why not?

It has tremendously! Not only have I shed 21.5 pounds as of June 2011 but my energy level has increased drastically and at my last doctor’s visit (June 2011) my cholesterol went from 315 to 245

In retrospect, how do you feel about meat? Or do you have any thoughts on America’s meat industry?

I don’t have a problem with meat, it’s just the way its processed, from the birth of the animal to its slaughter and the processing. Reading Tracye Lynn McQuirter’s book By Any Greens Necessary: A Revolutionary Guide for Black Women Who Want to Eat Great, Get Healthy, Lose Weight, and Look Phat really opened my eyes to the processing of meat in the U.S. Not only is it inhumane but very unhealthy to our nation overall.

Was there a community of black women that helped you along your meatless journey? And if not, what are you doing to change this for others?

There wasn’t a community but there was one good online friend of mine, Ms. Melody Walker that not only inspired me along with Ms. Tracye McQuirter but has been my motivator and cheerleader thus far.  I’m so thankful for these two strong women.  And I am also proud to say that since my becoming vegetarian, I started a Vegetarian and Vegan Recipe Swap group out on Natural Sunshine ( ) where one of the main carnies (She liked to call herself that) has transitioned to a full-fledged vegetarian as of June 2011!  I have been told that I have inspired and motivated so many ladies out there on the site for my stance on health and dedication.  It makes me feel quite humble and honored. I have also since changed career goals.  I now desire to become a certified Nutritionist and Dietician.

Note: You can check out Alona’s vegetarian “testimony” out on YouTube!

Are you a vegan, vegetarian, or pescatarian? Email if you’d like to be featured in the Black Female Vegetarian Series. Check back every Tuesday and Friday for a new profile! Click to read past profiles here.


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