April 18, 2023
297: Be A Plant-Based Woman Warrior: Live Fierce, Stay Bold, Eat Delicious | Ann & Jane Esselstyn

Anne and Jane Esselstyn, the dynamic mother-daughter duo leading the charge in empowering women through plant-based living. Ann Esselstyn, a trailblazer in the plant-based movement, has spent decades refining her culinary ski...

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Anne and Jane Esselstyn, the dynamic mother-daughter duo leading the charge in empowering women through plant-based living. Ann Esselstyn, a trailblazer in the plant-based movement, has spent decades refining her culinary skills and sharing her passion for delicious, health-promoting recipes. Her daughter, Jane Esselstyn, is a registered nurse with a wealth of experience helping women prevent and reverse chronic diseases through plant-based living. The pair have co-authored Be A Plant-Based Woman Warrior, combining their culinary talents to create a must-have guide for women seeking to improve their health and well-being.

In this episode, you will learn the following:

  • Discover the incredible impact of plant-based diets on women's health and well-being
  • Boost your confidence by learning about and embracing your sexuality
  • Grasp the significance of education and community support in promoting women's health
  • Master the art of preparing delectable and nutritious plant-based dishes




Visit Ann & Jane Esselstyn’s Social:

Website (Ann’s): http://www.dresselstyn.com/site/

Website (Jane’s): https://janeesselstyn.com/

Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/jane_esselstyn_rn/

Youtube: https://www.youtube.com/c/JaneEsselstyn/videos

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Jane Esselstyn 00:00

the way that we're eating, especially in the States and other cultures similar to ours is that we're having so much meat, grease and oil that is really leading us to have these lifestyle related diseases of pressure, diabetes, obesity is, you know, cancers and small cancers, and just heart disease, especially just terribly and these things are completely preventable and reversible. So I'm asking and trying to promote a we our message is, hey, just eat more veg, have more vegetables, have more fruit, have more greens, have more greens, have more berries have more just things that are going to make you not go this way with your health, but go this way with your health. And it is possible. We've seen it as you have time after time after time, things are preventable and reversible.

Maya Acosta 00:48

This is the healthy lifestyle solutions podcast and I'm your host Maya Acosta. If you're willing to go with me, together, we can discover how simple lifestyle choices can help improve our quality of life. Let's get started. All right. Welcome back, my friends. Welcome to the latest episode, where we are going to be speaking with the inspiring and in Jane s will Stan a mother and daughter duo. And their mission is to spread the message of plant based living for women from their best selling cookbooks, to their upcoming retreats and programs that they really have for women, we're going to dive in and learn about their story and explore the benefits of adopting a plant based lifestyle. So if you're interested in learning how plants can powerfully support your body and mind, join us for this episode and discover the secrets of the plant based Woman Warrior movement. Welcome and in Jane. Thank you. Hi. Hi, this is a pleasure. Thank you so much for making it on this show. Your family has played such a big role in our lives. And more specifically, I just before we get going, I want to share with you how really the work that your father has done Jane, your husband, and change the course of how my husband practices medicine today. He's a vascular surgeon. And today I'm going to hold up one of the books. I have about four books by your family. But the prevent and reverse heart disease is really the book that my husband started to learn from initially, but the person that actually convinced him to listen to this information was your brother rip Esselstyn. Goodness. Do you remember this book my deal with

Jane Esselstyn 02:38

a chap called plants wrong? Yeah.

Maya Acosta 02:41

Right. So I know there, there's been a rebrand now, right? So he's changed everything. He no longer references, engine two or anything like that. But when he wrote this book, I want to say was somewhere in 2013, or 14, he was touring. And that's when he had that partnership with whole foods. And he came right in front of our building where we lived, we had a whole foods. And I knew about that about him because I was already learning about this way of living. And so my husband says that I dragged him to the lecture. And food was included in this event. When my husband walked away in shock with his I mean, just could not believe it came home. And he shares in his story that he was sort of insulted to hear that a firefighter was telling him that the same disease that he was trained to treat could actually be reversed.

Ann Esselstyn 03:36

Well, that's amazing story. That's

Maya Acosta 03:39

so it is right to having your that rip, and then well rip changed our lives, led my husband to, you know, prevent a reverse disease. And then rip came around again a few years ago. And then I think he was promoting this one the seven day rescue diet,

Ann Esselstyn 03:58

Jane. And so this

Jane Esselstyn 04:00

I didn't rally recipes and plant strong recipes in that book. I did all the recipes. Yeah. Right.

Maya Acosta 04:05

Well, that's what we're going to talk about all of this. So it's an honor to have you both on the show because the reason I have a podcast is because I wanted to first make it easy for my husband's patients to be able to listen to the information in case they couldn't come to one of our in person events. Let's start with you. And I've heard you say that when you develop recipes you do so with the patients in mind, I feel

Ann Esselstyn 04:31

like you and I are very similar. In some ways, I was working with my husband on trying to do that end of the story. And when we started you know, it was back in the early 80s. And he decided that he would do this after research etc. And just we had to do it. No internet. No, no, no Oh 1000s of vegan or plant based cookbooks. So we just No,

Jane Esselstyn 05:05

no like, no like health food stores, if you will, in Cleveland, no Whole Foods for sure.

Ann Esselstyn 05:10

I mean, so. And actually, today, I feel we were so lucky, because we did not have the vegan junk food world out there to be so tempting. And right now today, that world is attracting people who are getting just as sick as people now used to get when before plant based,

Jane Esselstyn 05:39

standard American diet.

Maya Acosta 05:41

That's right, and what we say when it comes to that because I this month, in April, I will be seven years vegan, I am an ethical vegan, but I also am plant based. And when you say that, and one of the first mistakes that I made, which was why I'm happy that you have this cookbook, but one of the mistakes I made is that first year, we were traveling a lot, and I found the convenience foods in the frozen sections of the grocery stores. So I started incorporating the processed vegan foods into my diet. And that first year I gain weight. And then I said to my husband, I think I'm doing something wrong. I'm not eating enough salads, I'm not eating enough greens. And so I went back to the books to study and I share that often with my listeners because I always want to encourage especially most of my listeners who are women always want to encourage you to find ways to incorporate more plant based foods into your diet and move away from the processed foods. And we now say that vegan processed foods are like the standard American diet veganized because they can still be at risk. Jane and I

Ann Esselstyn 06:49

in 2014 14 wrote this book I mean, we did the recipes I don't know if it's reverse for

Jane Esselstyn 06:58

you but it's prevent and reverse heart disease cookbook is the company to my mom's was

Ann Esselstyn 07:02

totally into prevent and reverse heart disease preventing heart disease, my husband's and these recipes are just made for people with heart disease, vascular disease, you know, everything is

Jane Esselstyn 07:19

that all of our guidelines for all the folks who've done all of rips books, all of our books, we've done all you've done all the recipe books. Yeah, no meat, no oil, no dairy. Like that is the key of it. And you know, minimal salt when will sweet and having no nuts and no avocados, especially with heart disease patients. That's what makes the heart disease stuff we do different than some of the plants strong engine two stuff that we do, which has some avocado and some nuts and some people freak out. I thought your dad said no walnuts. How dare you have that? And I'm like, Well, if you dig a little deeper, it's because we're trying to prevent heart disease with these people. But just keep other people going on a plant based diet.

Maya Acosta 07:58

Yes, Jay, since you since you did contribute, you did write that cookbook for the prevent and reverse heart disease companion portion. Can you tell us a little bit about that. So as we covered in February, Heart Disease Awareness and my husband does counsel people about why it's important to adopt this you know, basically Dr. Esselstyn's Wilson's protocol is what we say. Well, we always say get a variety of greens but people are a little bit afraid of spinach and I'm not going to go into detail about that because I think

Jane Esselstyn 08:32

greens six times a day we have a we have a YouTube channel that we just like you we made it for for all of our disease patients. And it's ended up being more more folks than that but one of our videos is greens, greens, greens, how to eat them, you know, it's nighttime today as possible and you know, cooked raw chopped, steamed, baked however, just any kind of green nutrient dense actually has a wrap up of shirt. I got like a rap song wrap up all the greens. We'll get

Ann Esselstyn 08:59

out here to do it before you know he'd be afraid but you know what? I think here it is.

Jane Esselstyn 09:06

Bok choy was charged kale collards collard green beads, green mustard, green turnip greens, Napa cabbage, brussel sprouts, broccoli, cauliflower, cilantro, parsley, spinach, arugula, asparagus, and on and on. There's so many greens. That's when we mean six times a day spinach when

Ann Esselstyn 09:19

we wrote this book, prevent and reverse heart disease cookbook. We dedicated it to the greens, the greens. I

Maya Acosta 09:28

love it. That's wonderful. So I definitely wouldn't need to put a link to that book so that people can go out and buy it. So it's not just reading the research that Dr. Esselstyn writes in his book, but then we have to have the companion cookbook to know exactly what we need to eat to have to

Ann Esselstyn 09:44

seven years after that book. And so, certain things are different. But what I wanted to say is that my husband has a cereal that he eats. He eats every morning with lots of tons of fruit, but he doesn't have greens So every day when I cook my breakfast, which has grease in it, which just got greens, I always cook a side of kale for him. There are so many different kinds of kale. And so get your followers or your husband's movements to vary those greens and especially push on the kale. Yeah. Okay, thank you,

Jane Esselstyn 10:24

which makes indices, we don't need a lot of spinach. Yeah. So

Maya Acosta 10:27

it really is a scene. For example, hearing all the stories of the suffering that happens when it comes to my husband's patients who are very advanced. It's a driving force for us to continue to do this work. But really, you as the SSM family have been really role models in terms of how we can support our own community. Jane, I'd love for you to speak a little bit about how you both decided and I think you wrote this during the pandemic. How did you decide to write me a plant based Woman Warrior? Why? Why are we focusing on women?

Jane Esselstyn 11:01

All right, the name of the book is be

Ann Esselstyn 11:04

Plant Based Woman Warrior, Live Fierce,

Jane Esselstyn 11:07

stay bold, ie delicious. Whenever we have a chance to say, Oh, we love to say the title. Love it. No, yeah, we actually was March 7 2020, when we got the contract to do this project. And we thought, Hip hip hooray. Because we had all people from all over the country, we're at my parents house. And we all were saying hello like this can your elbow can your elbow. We were saying hello like this, we didn't really know what was going on. Remember that. And we had this live, you know, over 250 people this live our annual event for women, which is called you know, prevent reverse heart disease or whatever for women. Then the world shut down the next week. So yeah, we had this contract. Luckily, we got so lucky during COVID To have this project to work on. And we lived next door to each other not across the street, but like next door. So we would know, I would go to the store for parents cuz I didn't know what was going on. And then we chop and get what we could because you know, things were a little bit unavailable, kind of in Cleveland, at least. So we this book is actually a really simple to cook out of because there's not a lot of complicated ingredients. I mean, the most complicated thing, those foreign to people might be like, nutritional yeast,

Ann Esselstyn 12:19

baby. No, but not, nothing's more complex,

Jane Esselstyn 12:22

maybe some ramen black ramen noodles, which come from Lotus foods, by the way. And it was a ton of fun. And it gave us something to do during the pandemic.

Ann Esselstyn 12:32

Fun thing. So why is that? Because we live next door if Jane was making something, and this book is Jane has the power behind this, she would bring it over or vice versa. And I can remember because we started during the pandemic, we were watching TV. So at night when we'd be watching TV and I'd suddenly see the door open, and my eye would begin to salivate because I knew that she had another round of the brownies that she was trying how many about 10

Jane Esselstyn 13:05

or 12 rounds of this round. But you asked about how this powerful supports woman and the reason we made this book, you know be a plant based one warrior you've kind of already covered for us like we have made this is together my my fifth and her third cookbook. And our other ones have been you know, my mom wrote all the recipes in My Father's Book prevent reverse heart disease. So she kind of did this with heart disease in mind. And then she and I did this book with heart disease in mind. And then we've did somebody the engine to a description of plants strong seven day rescue engine to cookbook, all these things with being a firefighter in mind. Finally, finally, I

Ann Esselstyn 13:47

was like chain actually, all probably part of the recipes and every one of riffs first books and putting was just beginning were from me. Oh yeah. From

Jane Esselstyn 13:59

here. Yeah. Sorry, from an engine too. So this book is just like we want to just share our and our message. This is not necessarily about firefighting and this is not about heart disease, but about how to be a plant based one warrior, like like so I've three major reasons why we push for this book. First was I wanted this to be a tip of the hat to my mom, because as you heard earlier, she in Nigeria in the 80s when she had a full time job, her husband worked full time you know also obviously for kids all athletes and a dog she changed the way we all ate from being you know, kind of eating the standard American diet kind of not being weren't that extreme. But to don't no meat no dairy, no oil and and we all kind of going what's going on like because we were all athletes and division one athletes and on our way out of college, and she pulled it off and My parents today are on no lifestyle medication, they're just they're on. They're on plants. And they are active. They're interested, they're sharp. They you know, my mom does a yoga with me and you know she I find outside of running through the woods when I go up and running around the canal for hours and miles. And so this book is truly a tribute to my mom because I want to be like my mom, when I grow up, come on, come out and enhance that energy and vitality and interest and curiosity and just the capacity so much, Kathy. And the second reason I wrote it, we wrote it, I pushed for it. So that was to live fierce stabled is it most of the people in the world, not everybody, obviously. But the majority people in the world who think about plan, shop, prep, cook, and serve food, or women. Not all there's plenty of men out there doing a great job. But what's happened is the way that we're eating especially in the States and other cultures similar to ours is that we're having so much meat and grease and oil that is really leading us to have these lifestyle related diseases of pressure, diabetes, obesity, you know, cancers, Commons cars, small cars are common small cancers, and just heart disease especially just terribly and these things are completely preventable and reversible. So I'm asking and trying to promote a we our message is hey, just eat more veg, have more vegetables, have more fruit, have more greens, have more greens, have more berries have more just things that are going to make you not go this way with your health but go this way with your health. And it is possible we've seen it as you have time after time after time, things are preventable and reversible. And it's with food. And the third reason I wrote this is that I have three brothers, and they were all three all four of us are as I mentioned a little bit earlier, we're all athletes and we all were athletes growing up we all swam for our colleges in division one and so here I am swimming in Michigan I'm 18 years old and no maintenance double A's and train train training every morning every afternoon just you know your machine and I was didn't like what was happening to my body I was filling out and I thought what don't like this This doesn't feel like me and I didn't really connect with my body and I just felt like what is going on? I don't love this and I need to eat I need to train and that is exactly when my parents called and said hey just you know we're we're going on this diet we didn't have word PLANT BASE yet they were like we're not going to eat any meat or dairy or oil or sweet or salt or I thought oh my goodness, what are you guys eating? And you know, I was young enough that I still kind of felt like I lived at home with Jiten gone freshman fall to college. But it made sense and it slowly over time you know I got I figured out how to do it out of college and felt good and and I my body hasn't changed since then and I will and I say that just because I like to not have food head to not have this weight of concern this burden of being like an American female who's just feels like she's out you know her body is her message it's just it's so liberating MS feel so lucky to have these guys give us this the planet plant based diet from the get go

Maya Acosta 18:26

and you are so sharp. I so I've watched you like I said I learned a lot of my recipes. I've come from watching both of you especially during the holidays we do we make your mashed potatoes and your gravy. Jane, we make your one of the dresses. I think it's yours a three to one, something like that, though. It's the maple syrup, balsamic lemon and mustard yessing I don't know if he's Yeah, it's one of our favorites that we like for our salads. And, you know, I watch you and and I see your ability to recall information to tell stories. And I'm thinking, Oh my God, if only you know, most of us, I'm in my 50s and I take some time some you know, trying to recall information. It's really, it shows that this way of living can contribute to our quality of life as we age. So I really appreciate that. You know, and what I like about the dynamic between both of you is, you know, Jane, like for example, you might hear this a lot that I appreciate what you just said about women and as being the ones that mainly are the ones that are feeding our families. Many times in marriages especially you'll see that there's only one person on board and then the other spouse is still a little hesitant and we feel alone. We feel very alone that we don't have another family member on board. What you're showing us is what the what it looks like the beauty of having a family member especially another woman in the kitchen with you having fun developing these recipes and knowing that you're nourishing your loved ones. So it's a wonderful example of what all of us all women, on this journey would love to have in our own family. So I appreciate what you do with your channel.

Ann Esselstyn 20:10

That's wonderful. You say that. But I have to say we have four children and 10 grandchildren, and everybody is plant based. Yeah. And my idea of Heaven is to have them all here. And everybody cooking in the kitchen. Everybody, and because they all are amazing, and we get such crazy delicious food. Yeah, that's even infants. Even the little ones. I mean, we have some who are now as year nine. And they can cook. I mean, when we have all together, we put some of the killed little kids cooking. And it's cool.

Maya Acosta 20:55

Yeah, I love that. That's everybody's dream, right? Especially the little ones, they never have to develop heart disease or have traces of atherosclerosis. I mean, they start off on the right path very early on Vegas.

Ann Esselstyn 21:07

Yes, that any body can give to their family is to give them the power of plant based Yeah,

Jane Esselstyn 21:14

your health is your wealth.

Maya Acosta 21:17

Chain, something that is that I'm very passionate about as I dive into all of this women's health and understanding also lifestyle medicine, the importance of managing stress, exercising, especially as we get older, oh, my goodness. I mean, I didn't know how important all of that was. You talk a lot about health, sexual health.

Jane Esselstyn 21:37

When people say how do you talk about sex, I don't talk about sex, we're talking about being a sexual being. And these kids are going through puberty, which is for only one reason. So we all have gone through puberty, so we can some day reproduce. I mean, the ages stage of life, when you become physically capable of reproduction is what we that happens through puberty. And at the other end of that is, you know, menopause. And it's so it's all natural, going into coming out of you know, these pimples and never lack of lack of moisture in our skin at the other end. But what I like to talk about with whenever I present to adults about the benefits of a plant based diet is that it's amazing how plants powerfully support women. And our event we had on March 11th, this year, because we have an annual event for women. And this year, it was be a plant based one warrior, how plants powerfully support women. And we have every every lecture after which if they spoke, we would do the food to support what they were talking about. So we had we started out with Breast Health, Dr. Christy Fong, who I'm sure you know about and she's amazing. She's so dynamic and powerful. And he was 18 foods to prevent to 18 cancer, breast cancer crushing foods. And she just went boom, boom, boom, boom, boom, boom, boom, and like No, soy was number one. Number one, soy products, not no processed, but just the good ones. And then we cooked with them. And then I'm not gonna go through every lecture but the my point I'm gonna try to get to is we went through breast cancer. We went through heart to heart health, my dad, a woman, I'm very woman on that day. And then a gut health with Dr. Robin Shatkin and undercarriage health with Dr. Anne Bingham. My sister law and mental health with another doctor, Dr. Elizabeth windings and all of them talk about how plants powerfully support women in this way. So yes, with breast cancer, yes with mental health, but the undercarriage is where I think that women just we don't mean breast cancer though this pink ribbons awareness is out there and it's sort of we've normalized that we're using the word breast cancer in public. But the undercarriage health I say undercarriage because it's hard to just I don't like the word people choose to use otherwise it doesn't doesn't always match what you're thinking. So I like to talk about the specifics of what's going on down there below the belt and if you if I can talk about it here today with you I will please

Ann Esselstyn 24:04

This was revolutionary for so many people well no no. What I love this

Jane Esselstyn 24:10

as a middle school as a middle school and building it up too much money no as a middle school teacher, you know talking about all kinds of stuff with with the with the girls and boys you're talking about no male anatomy and everyone kind of knows you're talking about everyone has a sense they think either they babysat or they have brothers or cousins or so everyone knows the anatomy males have it's all external. It's out there. And everyone's you know, the boys especially laughing and like haha, the whole time, and there's comfort and jocularity, but then when the females it's really quiet because no one really knows what's going on, especially these middle school kids. So I talked with as adults whenever I have a chance to present because they don't know what this is starting in middle, you know, no one taught in middle school. So females the front view is you have to pay to have familiar the front view or female anatomy is really is really troubling, because it doesn't have this, like girls don't often know where it is or, you know, oh, that's in my body, we know, where's that stuff live? My mom's trying to find the page of it, and she just had it open. And here it is, well, I think it's a, you know, because like a female anatomy written like this, like people like what is this? Where does it live in my body, you just don't even really know. So I learned it early on, you have to turn women sideways when you're talking about them. Because then you have all the everything you need. In the cross section and the back there's a, a, and I want an A is actually women and men have this, this is the anus, this is the back end of that we have to have news and plant based eating benefits is so much, you don't have an issue with constipation, which means you don't have an issue with diverticulitis, you don't have if you have hemorrhoids, they just deflate because they're not think there's a pressure on those on those on those vessels, you have a decreased chance of colon cancer because everything's moving through. And you know, the grease, the meat, the cheese, things stay in there, and you just have to keep pushing, pushing, pushing, and you get these diverticula and all the complications that come there up. I'm gonna be quick about all this. So plant based diet completely benefits everything back there and a and then in front of the A. There is another whole this is the vaginal space, the vagina. The vagina. Whew, this if we venture up north area above angina, you have the cervix, the uterus and the endometrium, which is the lining of the sort of the of the uterus, the fallopian tubes and the ovaries. Everything benefits from running on a woman's own hormones and not running on hormones, from eggs, from dairy, from meat for the flesh of meat, especially these cows that think that they're still pregnant or have just nursing their babies. So getting off a chicken, especially off all that stuff and running on your own cholesterol, your own hormones. That is astounding.

Ann Esselstyn 27:02

We don't eat our chickens out there, there isn't a verse.

Jane Esselstyn 27:08

So what this what's so beautiful about this is that you have a decreased chance of, of, especially like kids getting in puberty, this gets much easier on ramp to puberty, and it's much easier off ramp into menopause, it's really a powerful place to be because I'm going to come back to this in a second for another reason. But above up in here, and your endometrium, the lining of the uterus is what is it that has the most dynamic behavior of any part of your body. The vagina is just a space. It's like a canal, it's a lobby, maybe it hosts a couple of things coming in and out. But it's just a lobby, and it's the goal of half of the population that might be heterosexual. So it's not a thing we should think about necessarily so much as everything around it. The endometrial lining is what kind of as a nest that grows every month, and it can you know, that's where the egg lands, and then it can be fertilized into a baby. Some women have issues with this and some women have their fertility is in the balance because of what's going on with the endometrial lining. They grow these things called fibroids, which just like to build up of all this tissue, it grows like a slag tight in a cave. It's just this tissue in her body. And this can drip drip, drip the blood out of the of the uterus, out of the lung of the uterus and down, you know, through the vagina, outside world and she thereby is getting anemic because she's losing all this blood, not just with her cycles. But in between and from these fibroids. The fibroids also tell the uterus that it's occupied and she can't get pregnant if it's occupied. So we've had many friends they've shared their story in us and as book starts this woman jority when they go off of eating meat and cheese and eggs, their fertility came back this when we young woman was told she had him hysterectomy right after her wedding at age 23. She went on a plant based diet. She got pregnant. I want her to call the baby FIV because it was like she over the fibroid but also it was the thin her doctor told her that she had me hysterectomy right after her wedding. I'm gonna come back to this space in a minute to the next. So what So from front to back, they have an A, they have a V to have a u the urethra This has nothing here. The uterus is above the vagina. This is the urethra. This is where we pee from and being a plant based diet. It's totally helps your kidneys which is your kidneys or if you go up here you've got your bladder and then your ears and your kidneys. Kidneys love a plant based diet because too much protein burns your kidneys they get exhausted you can get kidney failure. Just too much protein says too much of a burden on your kidneys as anyone who deals with with patients. They'll say oh yeah, kidneys tough on kidneys to have it rough with too much protein. Also, the eating of especially chicken seems to have an antibiotic resistant bacteria in it. It's hard to get it off not just your cutting board your knife your sink. and your faucets, but onto your body. And if you get it in your body, it's in there. And you know, you can get this UTI urinary tract infection that you cannot treat with antibiotics. It's frightening. And I just know that we have three kids and I'm like, Hey, you guys, please data vegan who doesn't eat chicken because you don't really want me around down there and get something I can't get rid of. And then by this time, the seventh grade boys are like, Oh my God, there's so many holes in a woman. Are you kidding me? How many holes do I have? And there's more, there's more. So the last thing the last. The last thing is the sea here in front and the sea is not a hole. This is not a hole. These are only nerves in the clitoris, clitoris, the clit whatever we want to call it designed for sexual pleasure. It's not a hole. It's a little little bundle of power, a little tissue of a pocket of flesh. That's astounding. This polka dot right right here. And this is not what was previously thought of 8000 nerve there are 10,000 nerves in the clitoris, all designed for sexual pleasure. And it is equivalent. And for this dancer this plane is the equivalent tissue of a penis. We're all made from the same Lego so many of nipples. Women have nipples. They just develop a little differently but in utero we have the same stuff with a men have a scrotum, women simply pin it up and call it labia. But this is powerful thing, this powerful tissue in the front, the clitoris is actually called the clitoris glands because G Al and as the glands is the head of the penis, so the head of the penis is the same tissue of this and then some all the all the real estate in the penis is then provided here and then some the penis only has 4000 nerve for sexual pleasure declares has 10 10k I'm having a 10k to celebrate the 10k in June. That's why being alright any more information on that, but this this 1000 there for sexual pleasure here is astounding because like I said we have the same tissue as the males males do externally. So where's all like what's in the shaft of the penis is called the corpus cavernosa we have that there in our bodies, I'm going to hold up this year. And this, this this that in the vagina separate separate separate that being a great job here with props, the blood flow when some when some is stimulated in a sexual way just like with in the male's body, blood flow comes down in their body and what happens is all the tissue that corpus cavernosa that goes from the clitoris to the vaginal space, it just is on the pelvic floor. This and gorgeous with blood and gorgeous blood. This gets a little bit aroused but like in the male's penis doesn't engage with blood too much just a little bit. But the blood flow comes over here and then gorgeous and these corpus cavernosum they're called Karana woman's body and that wraps around the vaginal space like a hippie hugging a tree and all this vasculature around the vaginal space creates lubrication and lubrication in the vaginal space is her sign of readiness you know an erection is a man sign for readiness. So, both the female body and the male body responded this their sexual messaging with blood flow vascular flow to make them function in a sexual way either going erection or with lubrication and you have to have all these fine capillaries open and to that single cell blood flow happens in the in those capillaries open to the message of interaction open to the message of creating lubrication because in the vaginal space it lubrication is made fun of plasma which comes from blood and female chemicals. So

Maya Acosta 33:35

incredible. Tuva Kuba Have you trademarked Kuba this has

Jane Esselstyn 33:41

told me to and I think I think I've been using it. legalese for so long that it would be an interesting battle. But anyway, I Yes, I have t shirts available on my website,

Maya Acosta 33:51

but I love that. Anyway, yeah,

Jane Esselstyn 33:54

I love it. When people like It's like Cleveland, United vegan Association. We're like now the Taurus urethra, vagina anus. And I love it from plant based diet.

Maya Acosta 34:03

Awesome. I should add to, for my listeners to know that you're a registered nurse. And you're just you know, along with your experience as a sex educator, and now teaching women these things is just so empowering. I love the details. I really appreciate that. Our listeners need to hear this. You know, like I said, I really want to help also empower my female listeners and what you know

Jane Esselstyn 34:26

what, together here, but it's hate and I don't want that assuming that anyone I don't

Ann Esselstyn 34:33

know about the hood. look good, then.

Jane Esselstyn 34:35

Hopefully. But what what it is, is it's you think you're empowering female listeners, but and if you're female molesters have female partners, hurray. But if you have heterosexual partner, it empowers your partner. And that's what's so interesting to keep talking about like, no rectal dysfunction. You know, being so hard for a man I'm like, It's hard on everyone involved, like the ownership and hopefully have a positive healthy sex life in your heart. ownership for your marriage. And so with this, you know, knowing where I mean everyone wants to share pleasure with their partner or that's just, you know, empty. Yeah.

Maya Acosta 35:09

And you know, Jane, you're so inclusive. And I really appreciate that. What what, what you're talking about when you teach this information to women is everything that in many ways I talk about when I have OB gens, for example, on the show to talk about preconception pre conceptual health, so everything a woman can do to optimize her body for pregnancy. So you're talking about minimizing risks for having PCOS, endometriosis, any sort of issue that can That's right, you know, the hormones, and then really just fertility optimizing your body for for healthy pregnancy. And then, you know, when I didn't even know about gestational diabetes, and how that could be a result of what we eat and lifestyle. And so we can reduce our risk for having I say, We but you know, in general, women who would like to have pregnancy, gestational diabetes, and then you're covering everything so that if we optimize our bodies early on, we can go through menopause without having so many complications as well. So you're, you're covering women's health throughout lifespan really?

Jane Esselstyn 36:20

Oh, yeah, we why not? It's no secret. And they we mess it up by like, here's some kid food, macaroni and cheese and chicken fingers and deep fried nonsense. And no vegetables, no fruit and just in milkshakes like, we. It's such a disservice. But, you know, we've we're eating from our eat. And if our ecology and our economy kind of match up, and we eat, we really can grow. Feels good. Like a friend of mine. She said, I'm buying your book, because you said to me, I'm 57. I'm a 57. Chevy. You're talking I was like, I guess I'm in menopause, I don't know, having a period for a couple years. And she was like, I she's been haunted. You know, every couple of hours with debilitating painful hot flashes. She's like, Are you kidding me? Like to not live? It's like having headaches or something. She's like, it's, so that's a live like, this would be life changing. So I was like, I don't know, I guess I'm in menopause.

Maya Acosta 37:22

Yeah, well, it's interesting. I have a sister who's a year younger than myself. And she's had some difficult pregnancies when she was younger. And she called me and she said, I'm calling each one of you. It's four sisters, four of us. And she says, What has been your experience with menopause because I wake up in the middle of the night sweating, I'm so uncomfortable. And I said to her, you know, I don't have that. I started to and then I realized right away, I no longer drink wine. I say that often. But I no longer since I've learned about that. It's just not healthy to have. So but that would be what would contribute to hot flashes from time to time. And so I said to my sister, who knows I'm on a plant based diet, this lifestyle works for me, I don't have and other things to Jane, you know, when it comes to what women battle with, I used to have acne, I've had thyroid problems. I've had weight issues, not significant, not a lot, but associated with my hypothyroidism. So all of those things clear and improve. When you're on this lifestyle. I want to go back to your book. Because you have a little section here. And I've seen you when you're doing both and both of you are doing your videos, you can't really show the recipe, there are some copyright issues in your own book at you and you're not allowed to reveal the recipes. You have a section here called the plant based Woman Warrior kitchen. And I just, you know, that's one of the skills that we learn when we go back to the kitchen, many people maybe were not raised by parents cooked. And so we've had to learn what we need to have in the kitchen. How important is that to you? To include all of this in your recipe book in your cookbook? You know, we just what are some of the essentials? Maybe that's why some of the things that we can mention. It's funny

Jane Esselstyn 39:08

you say that because we don't even know because this is only kitchen. We Yeah,

Ann Esselstyn 39:10

but it also, like, neither of us use the Instant Pot. But some people couldn't live without it.

Jane Esselstyn 39:19

Because we can't you don't want our cookbook to be like oh, you have all this important ski gear you know or like is this. This is exclusive. We have pots and pans and hopefully you have a stove or a fire you can cook over.

Maya Acosta 39:30

Yep, yep. You also mentioned bowls, which I learned about the bowls again, through all of you. And so when I talked to Buddha bowls, breakfast bowls, all kinds of things bowls related. When I talked to people I'd say use the bowl system that I learned from all of you, and you move away from relying on a recipe because as we know either we waste food because we can't think of a recipe. But if you want to just tell my listeners what is the foundation of say a dinner bowl for You

Jane Esselstyn 40:02

my mom is so funny she's like I never really cook bowls she's the original bowl maker and she's the reason she doesn't realize it. But because we always wanted to get greens into every meal like you're building your own bowl

Jane Esselstyn 40:20

builds your old bowl is this foundation. That literally, it isn't like here's your plate here's what was cooked for you. Here's your plate of food. It's here's a here's a bowl we're going to build it I want to read something about bowls. The word I got you can edit them if you want but here it goes. Yeah. Build your own bowls, your own handheld bowls. The word calvess means basin or bowl symbolically what is more womanly and powerful than the pelvis. What it creates what it holds family life, pleasure, vitality. Love it. So feels your will start with its foundation greens, dreaming arugula, kale, collards, maybe spinning maybe spinach, or spring greens or something cold kale, you name it beets, cauliflower, and broccoli. But greens are in there on the on the foundation and on top of that some sort of complex carbohydrate, brown rice never white. Whole wheat pasta never white barley, barley sweet potato, we potato, rice noodles like brown rice noodles, or black rice noodles. Jiaqi mwah up tricolour quinoa is just some complex carbohydrate. And those complex carbohydrates are filled with not just fiber and phytochemicals and micronutrients. But they also have so much good like essential fatty acids and things that we need and protein. And then on top of that, we have you have people choose like beans, lentils, some sort of lagoons some sort of pulses or tempeh or tofu whatever some mixture boogie woogie in that way, and there's a bazillion ways to prepare it. We have a whole tofu Tebay section and we always make our own beans or if you need to get from Kansas, make sure rinse them if it has enough salt, try to get yourself and then a Brazilian vegetables cooked raw shredded cubed defrosted we don't care how grow your own sprouts like my mom does. And then we have them when our our secret weapon is our sauces. And our most recent YouTube was this lime corn sauce, which is so good. If it Yeah, it just came up with last night. She didn't know because we make money as opposed to a couple days later. Anyway, the sauces just make, you know, imagine having whole wheat pasta without red sauce, like you need it. You know, imagine having a burrito without salsa, like, didn't eat it. So all these bowls were making. We have you know, the corn lime sauce, we have teriyaki sauce, we have Thai peanut sauce, again, the nuts usage is coming with people who don't have heart disease, or who are not struggling with trying to reverse their type two diabetes. And so our publisher was so funny. They were like, You guys talked about sauces. It all the time. I mean, hummus, sauces, gravies all these things. So they put they wanted to put our sauce section first. But my mom was like, Breakfast has to be first. And so it goes breakfast sauces in our book.

Maya Acosta 43:33

Yeah. Yeah. And then the

Ann Esselstyn 43:36

balls are just all around the book.

Maya Acosta 43:40

Yeah, that's true. sauces are so important to flavor the food, because we need the food to be delicious to continue to eat this way. So yes. So and you're sort of like one of the original plant base Woman Warrior. What continues to drive you today? You've been cooking this way for so long. But what drives you today?

Ann Esselstyn 44:03

I don't have any other way to do it. I mean, what do you mean?

Maya Acosta 44:08

I mean, what will you because when I see you, you're you're still you're alive? You're excited? Like I think of what drives me like, you know, yes. hearing the stories of people suffering every day, my husband's patients, and but also the people that come up to us from time to time and they say they're dealing with this and this and they seen an improvement. You know, when they adopt plant based foods. You still have this enthusiasm, this excitement, like a child almost trial likes

Jane Esselstyn 44:39

to say it but she feels great. She's active and she can't stop thinking about the herd. That's

Ann Esselstyn 44:44

the end of Jane's conference. Our daughter in law Paoli in the bar, spoke. She's a brilliant speaker. And one of the things she could she said in her little short talk at the end of Jane's conference was if you need it did take 40 days to make any changes. And so I had just gotten a peloton bike, which I hated. hated it because I felt like I wasn't too good at it. So I decided that I would go and ride the peloton bike before breakfast for 40 days. I am now on day 18. But what Polly said when I told her, she said text me every day. So I have done that texted her. And by having to text her every day, and then she will respond great or comments. I just I can't not do it. I can't not ride that peloton every day. And I want to show you because one day question I did.

Maya Acosta 45:52

I feel like you're answering it though. I know that's, I

Ann Esselstyn 45:56

understand. Because the My point is, if somebody thinks they can't do it, find a way to decide you're gonna do it and again, and vehicle get someone accountable to you. But what I wrote Polly, and I said, Polly, why did you choose 40 days? And Polly said it's based on both the science of habit formation and also several wisdom traditions, and mystical numbers. So if you do the 40 days, you're working with the power of the universe.

Maya Acosta 46:31

Hmm, that's beautiful.

Ann Esselstyn 46:33

I love it. Universe now and fired me to go out and I not only drive before breakfast, I pull a tire, drag a tire and then I do my sort of other things. So that's, that's one thing that started all that.

Maya Acosta 46:52

Yeah, that that seen, the physical strength that you have develop is amazing. And as you know, many of the people that come to this lifestyle are not necessarily athletic. And suddenly in their 50s they find themselves running by case. And by the way, Jane, you are going to tell us about a 10k. And please tell us about any other upcoming programs that you have for women.

Ann Esselstyn 47:15

So exciting.

Jane Esselstyn 47:16

But I want to say to women who said is is so it's so interesting. You said what keeps you going it's like, there isn't even the thought of not doing what they're doing. Like there's no for 3040 years. This is how they've shot like I can't imagine somebody say oh, how could Aren't you tired of going to church or something? Habit. This helps you in your life? I get you done enough. Like no part of the community that makes me who I am and, and I feel so good about it. So if

Ann Esselstyn 47:44

you stop making your bed every morning, you know. It's just part of who you are. Do Yeah, you suddenly don't.

Jane Esselstyn 47:51

Yeah, right. It's like throw it but anyway, um, so your quote

Maya Acosta 47:56

will be Oh, you are talking about a 10k. And it will be

Jane Esselstyn 47:59

we have coming up is Joe's for June 22 to 25th. We have a camp for plant based women warriors. It's called well now camp, and it's for plant based, wounded warriors. It's just for women now or people who identify as women. And it's on the Kenyon College campus and which is in Ohio. And it is a blast. We have no sitting down no as I listen to lectures, we have activity we have that it's optional, and that doesn't have to be I know you can always take a nap if you want to. But we have arts and crafts we have

Ann Esselstyn 48:35

amazing she has collected most crazy amazing staff.

Jane Esselstyn 48:41

So we have like our camp counselors if you will. So we have improv and we have writing and we have cooking demos lessons hands on that you know participation and and on and on. I just can't it's can't we have s'mores plenty s'mores that are so fun.

Ann Esselstyn 48:55

Amazing food and that yeah, Kenyan cannabis kitchen

Jane Esselstyn 48:58

the dining services really has worked with me for years to get this right and so the food is delicious.

Ann Esselstyn 49:06

And the cat Kenyan campus is spectacular. Anyway,

Jane Esselstyn 49:10

so it's we have it so camp well now. Well, no camp, it's on my website, Genesis and.com. Or if you follow on Instagram, you can see it in my link tree in the bio, but that's coming up. And I'm also speaking at a couple places coming up. We're at Kripalu. Why don't you have heard of Kupala it's a yoga health retreats in the Berkshires of Massachusetts. We're doing anything together there. I've been invited to Alaska to present in July and I've been invited to go to Montana in May. And my all these places need to fill up so people are wanting to come to these events please come to well now camp and if you want to go some of us in our whole fallen curriculum, or camp schedule, but it'd be great to have anybody join.

Maya Acosta 49:59

Yeah, how many parts Test serpents Can you have there at your camp?

Jane Esselstyn 50:02

Oh, we, you know, it's a college campus. So let's bring it Do we look like we like having between close to 32 Close to 50 like that, if it's too big, we did too big and it was too small, you know, small. So we'd like having that feel of like a camp group 20 is

Ann Esselstyn 50:18

nice, because you get to know

Jane Esselstyn 50:19

you get to know. And you know, we have had up to 50 and we've had live with with the cancel with COVID. But anyway, the 10k for the 10k is, it's going to be obviously we're into something at camp with that on June 24. But it's, it's going to be able to be run virtually also people can sign up to just basically just sign up get information, because what I want people to do is do 10k of something, I don't care if you drive a 10k put someone in your car with you and discuss these points on this. On this what you think I also have headbands with polka dots to represent the tourists, which is a spa not Not, not the vaginal space, which is the target. It is the power center. So you can get headbands and information you can drive 10k You can walk 10k You can do 10,000 steps, you can knit 10,000 knits and pearls while you talk about these things. You can what are your top writers like for you the list of like, where's this? This this is this is this is the conductor of pleasure in a woman's body and it is right here and you know, north of the of the of the

Ann Esselstyn 51:27

questions, you're gonna get them.

Jane Esselstyn 51:29

Yes, I get a list of discussion points, we're gonna have a video with the doctors, the researchers who discovered this or whatever came upon this research. So yeah, it's gonna be the 10k for the 10k.

Maya Acosta 51:40

All right, well, this is exciting. I'll put all your links in the show notes. I just really want to thank you for taking the time if you'd like if you have a final message for my women, female listeners, please saw please, what do you think? Feel free to share anything you'd like?

Jane Esselstyn 51:57

Jane Austen DICOM? We'll have it all go in there. And you can if someone wants to talk to my mom, and we do we do appointments? Phone calls?

Maya Acosta 52:04

Oh, I didn't know about that. Do you want to tell us more? Like? Do they just

Jane Esselstyn 52:08

people who are a plant based path? Sometimes they have questions they want to talk about just they want to talk about recipes or like what do you do about this? It's they're hilarious. They're always fun. They're always informative. And you can just sign up on our dance lesson.com

Maya Acosta 52:23

Okay, I Okay, I have one more question. And I just because it sounds fun about your YouTube videos, just your videos in general, I you know, give us a little bit of insight of what it's like when you both make a video. You know, you're cooking a recipe, how long does it take to make a video? And has it gotten easier over time? Because you do do you did say that you have a videographer that helps you out with these videos?

Jane Esselstyn 52:51

Oh, no, we have a whole set. We have a whole a whole set of five cameras and lights and all this stuff.

Ann Esselstyn 52:56

So we have and half the time. The recipes we make don't work the right way the way they should just just No, no, no, no. But I mean, like I can remember I'm putting in too much flour before isn't how I mean, it's nothing Do you know and

Maya Acosta 53:13

then other words, when you're when you're filming? It's it's different than where you're in by yourself in the kitchen because you probably this the guest

Jane Esselstyn 53:22

our videographer team, they're like family and we all we do is we have like eight recipes we're going to do in a day. So we have eight headbands and eight scarves and eight shirts. So we just change our talk, okay, we're the same aircraft, the same dead flower in the background for eight in a row. And we know because we don't know what do you care, and then we versal we're like, okay, man's driving, she's gonna make this greater and the Jane's driving, she's gonna make this sauce or whatever, whatever. The other, we're gonna go with oatmeal competition, like, whatever. There's zero planning, except we get the food we need. So if we bring something we're like, oh, we kind of scores at this time. Oops. Yeah. has ever happened before. We have if there's none, it's just completely live and real.

Ann Esselstyn 54:04

And I love it on the on the sauce that we just did the corn side, corn sauce. So good. I realized that what I put in the book was wrong. And I was so happy to have the YouTube to make the correction. Don't hold vinegar. At the end. It's just Oh, that's the line. What you have to actually know

Jane Esselstyn 54:25

acid Queen just said, yeah.

Maya Acosta 54:28

That's true. Well, thank you so much for joining me today.

Jane Esselstyn 54:32

You Thank you. You are wonderful. You are Thank you, Chairman, everything

Ann Esselstyn 54:39

in the world. Yes.

Maya Acosta 54:40

Yeah. And I definitely want to put that link for your account because I was one reason I wanted both of you to come on the show is to promote that I want my female listeners to have access and to hopefully join your camp and buy themselves a copy of this wonderful woman warrior book. Thank you. Thank you.

Ann Esselstyn 54:58

You're a warrior. You Yeah. Oh,

Maya Acosta 55:01

thank you. You've been listening to the healthy lifestyle solutions podcast with your host Maya Acosta. If you've enjoyed this podcast do us a favor and share with one friend who can benefit from this episode. Feel free to leave an honest review as well at rate this podcast.com forward slash HLS. This helps us to spread our message. And as always, thank you for being a listener.

Ann & Jane EsselstynProfile Photo

Ann & Jane Esselstyn


Ann and Jane Esselstyn, the dynamic mother-daughter duo leading the charge in empowering women through plant-based living. Ann Esselstyn, a trailblazer in the plant-based movement, has spent decades refining her culinary skills and sharing her passion for delicious, health-promoting recipes. Her daughter, Jane Esselstyn, is a registered nurse with a wealth of experience helping women prevent and reverse chronic diseases through plant-based living. The pair have co-authored Be A Plant-Based Woman Warrior, combining their culinary talents to create a must-have guide for women seeking to improve their health and well-being.