Magdalena Chávez

Magdalena describes “a lucky encounter with cancer many years ago” as setting the scene for a seismic shift in eating.

Magdalena describes “a lucky encounter with cancer many years ago” as setting the scene for a seismic shift in eating.

She says,

When we have cancer the earth shifts beneath our feet. Nothing looks the same or ever will again. So with everything in the air, why not through food up in the air too? At least those were my thoughts when introducing a wholly vegan diet to my determined recovery.”

 In 1997 she founded EL PIANO as a vegetarian eaterie and by 2004 had gone “the whole hog” as she calls it, tongue in cheek, eschewing all animal products and all gluten from the restaurant's medieval premises.

 A vegan diet always sounds alien to me, like a diet from outer space, something that the characters from STARTREK might eat (the Vulcans of course!) I prefer to call it more accurately a 'plant-based' diet...no rotting flesh decomposing in our gut, no cholesterol building up in our arteries and much cheaper shopping list...

She is rarely comfortable with the statement I AM A VEGAN preferring instead, I EAT A PLANT BASED DIET.

I want to get away from the 'religion' aspect of veganism and the divisiveness that it can generate.” she says. “Saying I AM is powerful stuff about identity whereas saying I EAT is information about what I put in my mouth."

A plant based diet also speaks to many about animal welfare and climate change. She acknowledges the importance that has in how we eat but she also knows that when one is fighting for one's life, or for improvement to its quality, sometimes it is best just to salute the big themes yet focus on 'one-day-at-a-time'.

BEAUTY DESPITE CANCER stands for how we may meet cancer on the outside. Our approach to food and cooking complements BEAUTY DESPITE CANCER by managing better what goes on on the inside.” she says. “We are looking forward to contributing to and learning from BEAUTY DESPITE CANCER.”

Recipes will appear soon with easy steps for fast food based on what so many of us already eat, plus our hopefully fun blog 'a day in the life of an EL PIANO diner'...and we await your comments...

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