the lively show: talking plant-based eating with jessica murnane



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The second episode is here!

First of all, thank you so much for the outpouring of support for the first episode with Erin last week!

It was so wonderful to see how well received the show was, and I cannot thank you enough for spreading the word about the show, particularly via Twitter.

In today’s show, I interview Jessica Murnane, a Chicago-based blogger and plant-based eating coach over at, whom I’ve had the privilege to befriend over the past six months.

I will say right away: this episode is not intended to “push” a plant-based eating agenda.

I simply find Jessica’s health story inspiring, her resulting career shift fascinating, and I think her journey is an amazing example of someone turning their ‘mess into their message,’ as Joyce Meyer says.

So whether you are interested in eating a plant-based diet or not, I hope you join us!


In this episode you’ll find out about


  • How Jessica’s avoided a hysterectomy due to severe endometriosis by switching to a plant-based diet.
  • The emotional toll and reaction to making a positive shift from friends and family. How to deal with naysayers.
  • How Jessica started a plant-based movement among the top restaurants in Chicago and beyond.
  • What resistance she faced internally to making this shift in her life.
  • How to get enough protein on a plant-based diet.
  • How to handle having selective eating choices in a group setting.
  • What to do if you have an overzealous friend on a new eating plan.
  • What Jessica would advise someone considering a plant-based diet.


Show Notes

Isa Does It


Listen to the show


Want more? Listen to more Lively Shows here.


PS – Please leave a review on iTunes!

Now that The Lively Show is on iTunes, I would really appreciate it if you can leave an honest review.

As the show gains more reviews, it may qualify for the new and noteworthy category… which means more awesome listeners will be able to discover the show!


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  1. stef

    This could not have come at a better time. I recently eliminated grains, dairy, and sugar (essentially “paleo” but I don’t love being associated with that term) and feel pretty great. Like Jessica, I’ve tried diet changes before but they never stuck because it wasn’t the right time for some reason. I have no interest eliminating meat from my life but still relate to a lot of what Jessica has to say. I’m only half way through and can’t stop myself from commenting already. I love these podcasts so much.

    1. Jess Lively

      Very nice! Mr. Lively is eating mostly paleo-type foods now and feeling great, too! I’m glad you were able to relate to a lot of the universal experiences we can have with food whether we choose to eat meat or not. : )

  2. Anne E. McGraw

    Loved this podcast. I have tried to eat more whole and healthy foods and love the results. I must admit that it’s hard to completely eliminate some of my favorite foods or dairy. But just like in Jessica’s talk, once she finally took the plunge it payed off. And that is just the kick in the pants I needed. Thanks!

  3. I really love The JL Show. 🙂 I just downloaded this to listen to on my train ride home today. I am starting a new regime on Monday, so plant based eating…not 100%, but partly, will be a goal in the upcoming weeks.

    1. Jess Lively

      Aw, that’s great to hear, Kimberly!

      I’m excited to hear how the PB eating goes for you!

  4. Emi

    Loved this podcast! I have been in a food rut recently and it was so helpful to hear about her experiences to have some perspective into my own potential! Thank you so much for starting The Lively Show! I’m a subscriber 🙂

  5. Michelle Robertson

    A little eerie how timely this episode is for me, I just decided to try a plant-based diet about a week ago. Like Jessica it’s not political I just want to see if it makes me feel better. Having a really hard time getting started and sticking to it, having a husband and two small kids who aren’t ready/able to commit with me makes it extra hard. This was just the extra motivation I needed. Once again Jess, you always know the right thing to say!

    Headed to iTunes to add a review, love the new podcasts!

    1. Jess Lively

      That is so great to hear, Michelle! Congrats on your experiment with plant-based eating!

      Also, thank you for adding the review, I really appreciate it!

  6. Kaly Sullivan

    Great discussion – I loved hearing Jessica’s story. And So, How Was Your Day? is one of my favorite web sites. I also had a medical issues that my doctors wanted to solve with surgery. By changing my diet significantly (cutting out corn, gluten, dairy and sugar) I was able to heal my body without medical intervention.

    I understand that feeling of being desperate to try anything, and I totally relate to mourning your former identity. It has been a tough road but I have also seen a huge uptick in my mood and much less anxiety and depression overall. My skin totally cleared up and my periods got significantly more manageable.

    I did leave behind friends who weren’t interested in my new lifestyle and were very threatened by the changes that I was making. Sad at the time but part of the mourning – so now we make new traditions and try new recipes. Thanks for sharing this story – it’s nice to know I’m not the only one facing these challenges.

    1. Jess Lively

      Thank you so much for sharing, Kaly! I am so happy to hear you were able to avoid surgery based on your eating, too!!

      Thank you for showing us that we can do hard things. : )

  7. Jessica

    Thanks so much for having me, Jess! All of these comments are so inspiring! Thanks for sharing your story Kaly. I love your outlook “now we make new traditions” – couldn’t have said it better. Thanks everyone for listening.

  8. Chloe

    Oh, this is absolutely wonderful. I am struggling, struggling, struggling with tons of severe eczema. It just gets worse with each day. I have been changing my (honestly generally clean) diet to see if that helps and this may be just the kick in the pants that my system needs. I’m so glad to find another non-crazy healthy eater, and such an incredible story that proves that healthy eating is worth every bit of extra effort!

    1. Jess Lively

      I’m so glad this one hit home for you, Chloe! I hope you find a way to help soothe your eczema (my best friend has a bad case of it, too). I know that can be such a tricky thing to address.

      Best wishes with your non-crazy healthy eating adventures!

  9. Incredibly insightful, and very well-spoken. Thank you Jessica, for opening up about your health condition and your journey. I’m so glad that you’re better now! I have been vegetarian for about 10 years for various reasons (preference, health, loving animals, energy), and it’s hard to not sound “preachy” when people ask me why. I think it’s very smart to simply say “plant based” and avoid the stigma and associations we have with the words vegetarian/vegan. I try to not make my diet a big deal in the same way that you do, and it makes a difference! I also love that you spoke about how food affects so much of our lives beyond simply weight. Energy levels and emotions are impacted so much by ones’ diet, and it’s time that society pays more attention to that. Thanks Jess for the great interview!

    1. Thank you so much for sharing, Merissa! I’m so happy to hear you resonated with Jessica’s thoughts on plant-based eating. : )

  10. Rachel LC

    I loved this interview! Thanks so much for sharing your story, Jessica. It completely spoke to my heart — I’ve been feeling unwell for some time now and my typical get plenty of sleep-meditation-acupuncture routine isn’t helping me much. As someone interested in nutrition, I can’t believe I never considered that food could heal my body. This holistic approach to self care is a great inspiration.

    1. I’m glad Jessica’s story spoke to you, Rachel! I hope you find a path to wellness that works for you and your body!! : )

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