– Hi, my name is Lilian Aguilar,and I would like to sharewith you my plant-based story. I grew up in a traditionalMexican householdeating a lot of the traditional disheswhich are very high in animal products. They’re very high in dairy products. They’re very high in fat overall. My family was not financially stable,my parents had to work a lot. I grew up eating a lot of fast foodjust because it was thecheapest thing availableand it was the easiest thingfor my parents to providefor us to a family of nine. So I was eating a lot ofpizza, a lot of fried tacos,a lot of hamburgers, justanything that my parentswould find easy to feed us. Because of this, I grewup pretty overweight. I had a lot of acne, I hadboth face and body acne. I was constantly getting sick. I had very low energy levels,and due to all this I alsoended up suffering from deep depression. At the age of 14, everything changed. I started volunteeringin an animal shelter,and that’s how I found outall of the terrible thingsthat happen to animalsin the factory farms,the dairy farm, the fur trade,and how we’re basically exploiting animalsfor our own benefits,and immediately I decided to eliminateall animal products out of my diet. I lost approximately 50 pounds. My acne completely went away. My hair started growing really fast,my nails started growing really fast. My energy levels improved, Ifelt so much better overallthat my depression endedup going away as well. And throughout a few years,I stayed with my dietand I was really healthy. Now at the age of 18, that’swhen I moved out on my own. I started college, andI started incorporatinga lot of other typesof foods into my diet. I started discovering new vegan foodsthat were not available to me before,a lot of vegan pizza, veganice cream, vegan hamburgers,vegan imitation chicken,vegan imitation cheese,and my body started changingthe more I startedconsuming these products. I started gaining a lot ofweight, my acne came back. My energy levels were going down. I just was not feeling good overall. I started getting sick constantly,and it wasn’t until I was 28 years oldthat I was just not happy with my bodyand I finally decided to make a change. And I decided to become a personal trainerso that I would be able to learnhow to get my body into shape. But even though I was a personal trainer,I was still not seeingthe results that I wanted,and at the age of 29 Itook a nutrition coursewhich happens to be thePlant-Based Nutrition Certificatethat Cornell University offers. It was then that I decidedto go back to consuminga whole foods plant-based diet,and my body just transformed. I lost all of the weight again. I started feeling so much better. I noticed that my recovery inthe gym was so much better. Overall, my health just improved. I haven’t been sick in over four years,and people started noticing these changes,especially in the gym, andthey would come up to meand make comments like,oh you should competein a body-building competition. Oh, but you’re vegan. Oh you should compete in this federation,oh but you don’t eat meat. And a lot of peoplestarted making commentssaying that I would not be ale to competein a body-building competitionbecause I was veganand because I was not eatingthe high amounts of proteinthat everybody was consuming. So to prove a point, I decided to competein my very firstbody-building competition,the NPC Las Vegas Classic,and I actually ended up placingtop five in that federation,which I think proves an even bigger point,not only that you can buildmuscle on a vegan dietbut you can also be competitive as a veganwhole-foods plant-basedand supplement-free. So I’m here to show youthat you can absolutelyreach the body of your dreams. You can build muscle, andyou can reach optimum healthon a whole-foods plant-baseddiet without any supplements.