Tennis star Venus Williams has suffered silently for years with an unknown and painful disease. One month prior to dropping out of the U.S. Open, Venus was finally given a diagnosis of Sjogren's Syndrome.
Sjogren's is an incurable chronic autoimmune disease in which the body attacks itself. Symptoms include dry eyes, dry mouth, and may cause dysfunction of multiple organs including the kidneys, lungs, liver and central nervous system. Patients may also experience fatigue as well as joint pain.
Venus said, "I couldn't raise my arm over my head, the racket felt like concrete. I had no feelings in my hands. They were swollen and itchy. I realized it would be a miserable show", after dropping out of her second match with Sabine Lisicki.
Nearly four months after her diagnosis, discussions with her sister Serena, and much thought on the circumstances, Venus made the decision to take a holistic approach to resolving her health issues.
The solution? To start with a switch to a raw vegan diet. With the support of her sister Serena, Venus is on the path to healing in the healthiest way possible. Serena had this to say about her sister, "She has done a complete U-turn. She was devastated, but she is so positive now."
Both of the Williams sisters have committed to a vegan diet as they begin 2012.
As someone that switched to a vegan diet for health reasons similar to those of Venus Williams, I can personally say that this is the best step she can take towards recovery.
I think it's okay when I speak on behalf of the vegan community and say "woohoo another celeb has committed to a peaceful diet." And this time, not just one but two star athletes!
To learn more about Sjogren's, click here
Serena Williams Website