ngela Lovelace is a 24-year old young woman from Greenwood Arkansas who was born with Down Syndrome (DS). DS is a genetic condition affecting roughly one in one-thousand people (according to the CDC). The genetic anomaly characterizing the condition is referred to as trisomy meaning that DS individuals possess an extra chromosome (chromosome 21), which typically results in severe mental retardation and often a proneness to ill health, numerous challenges/limitations and shorter lifespans.
The fact is that most of us just sit around waiting for a bad diagnosis before we ever bother to take control of our health. Too often, we wait until the pain of the problem (i.e., diet and lifestyle) exceeds the pain of the solution. All too often, by then it’s too late.
Angela, on the other hand, did what most people never bother to do. She rather remarkably took charge of her own health and in doing so has exceeded many of her own limitations and has since inspired innumerable others.
Angela too was once similarly limited in her capacity to communicate with others. And while constantly craving unhealthy foods (lots of sugar and starch), she suffered significant weight and mood issues, particularly once she hit puberty. At under 5 feet tall, Angela weighed 149 lbs. She said: “all I enjoyed in life was eating, watching TV, listening to music and coloring…and I didn’t feel good about myself and I wasn’t very happy.” Her sister, Brianna said: “to us as her siblings she was more of a hassle than a sister because we always had to keep an eye on her and make sure she was, you know, not getting into stuff. She had a habit of wandering off sometimes. She did act shy around people, but I think she only acted like that because she couldn’t communicate with people.” Her mother, Trish, said: “She was just in a shell. Before all she wanted to do was watch TV and eat and now she was out running where before I couldn’t get her to walk!” Within a few months after implementing her original dietary plan, Angela lost 57 pounds and her self-esteem, mental abilities and self-confidence really began to improve.
But after a while the Lovelaces found that Angela’s improvement was beginning to slow down. They knew they needed to learn more but they didn’t know where to look. They studied a lot, but like so many others nowadays found that they were only becoming more confused. It was then that they were fortunate enough to be introduced to a gentlemen who was able to change all of that for Angela…a man named Jim Dooley – now the Executive Director for what has become (at Angela’s own insistence) the New Angela Foundation.
I have spoken personally with Angela and have been struck by her bright light, her irrepressible persona and her contagious determination. She is truly a remarkable young woman that I am honored to know.
A reporter in her video (which I strongly recommend viewing) speculated as to what might be possible for the rest of us if Angela could accomplish so much from just a few dietary changes ....