A Snapshot of the Year Gone By

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From the desk of Dr Nandita Shah

Anyone with a lifestyle disease can vouch for the fact that health is wealth. Even literally – given the steep cost of medicines, doctor and hospitalisation charges. And this is only because the current paradigm invites sickness with readymade foods, celebrations of gorging, various myths and even more medications.

At SHARAN, we are working to build a culture of health. We believe that each one of us is the author of our disease. So, all our events, retreats and consultations are thoughtfully designed to help you get started on changing your culture. Once changed, we hope that you will need us no more and you will then go on to inspire many more. It is only in this spirit – to spread the message far and wide – that we hold training programmes for doctors, nutritionists and facilitators. After all, it is said that if you want to learn something, teach it! Together we can spread health, help save the environment for future generations, and safeguard billions of animals from suffering.

For 2020, SHARAN has drawn up an interesting calendar to spread health and happiness. We look forward to having you join us at any of these events with the awareness that health is the only true wealth. May this year be your richest yet.

21 year old ultra-runner Navaal Rai talks about plant power…

I am an ultra-runner, an adventure enthusiast and most importantly a plant-based athlete. Having been someone who had experienced the joy of running marathons for a couple of years, I wanted to transition to running ultra-marathons. In my pursuit of understanding more about this extremely demanding sport, I came across two amazing books written by world famous ultra-endurance athletes- ‘Eat and Run’ by Scott Jurek and ‘Finding Ultra’ by Rich Roll. Both these books boasted of massive transformations in the authors over an astonishingly short period of time, all of it by simply going plant based. This sparked an interest in me and I wanted to know more.

I have since childhood been an admirer of nature and the creatures that we share this planet with. On researching more about a ‘vegan diet’, I came to understand that not only could I boost my athletic performance and improve my overall health, I could also do my part in conserving the biome. Further reading and research made me understand the cruelty towards animals that goes behind every single meal that has animal-based products in it. By going vegan, I could save over 200 animals a year. I would also be reducing my carbon footprint and conserving water at the same time. All of this was more than enough to convince me of the benefits of going vegan.

As a hardcore meat eater, all of this came as a shock to me and I wanted to immediately effect a change in my diet. At the age of 20, I finally took the step of going vegan. I have now been vegan for a little over a year and have never felt better. Since going vegan, I have completed numerous gruelling ultra-races ranging from distances of 50 to a 110kms in the mountains. I am also associated with Unived, a vegan sports nutrition brand as its ambassador, which has only gone on to prove to me that if athletes pushing their physical limits can be vegan, then no human needs to eat meat or use other animal based products for any reason.

Running over 20 hours in the mountains requires a special kind of fuel, and that fuel for me is completely plant-based.

Broccoli Soup 


  • 2 cloves of garlic, chopped
  • ¼ cup diced onion
  • 1 inch of fresh ginger chopped, to taste
  • 5 cups fresh broccoli, roughly cut
  • 3 cups unpeeled diced gold potatoes
  • fresh water, as needed
  • sea salt and ground pepper, to taste
  • a handful of fresh parsley, roughly chopped
  • 1 cup coconut milk to taste


Heat the pan over medium heat and stir in the garlic, onion and ginger. Add in the cut up broccoli and gold potatoes. Add just enough water to cover the vegetables- not too much. You can always thin the soup later, if you need to. Add the chopped parsley. Season with sea salt and fresh pepper, to taste. Bring the vegetables to a high, simmer. Cover the pot and reduce the heat to a medium, simmer. Cook for twenty minutes or so, until the potatoes are fork tender. Remove the pot from the heat. Use an immersion blender to puree the soup. Return the pot to the stove and add in the coconut milk. Stir and heat through gently (don’t boil the pureed soup). Test taste and adjust seasonings.

Serve with a sprinkle of fresh minced parsley.

Serves 4

Food for the mind


If you love Facebook, then join us to be supported on your plant based journey. we are offering three possibilities

1. SHARAN India This is SHARAN’s main Facebook page which you can like and follow for getting useful daily updates and news from the plant based health world. You will also get news about the latest SHARAN events, see testimonials, and more.

2. SHARAN’s Vegan Support Group This is an open support group to know more about vegan/plant-based lifestyle. Here you can ask questions and share inspiring stories, tips, recipes, etc.

3. SHARAN’s Plant Powered Health This is the new group only for the past attendees of SHARAN’s events: seminars, cooking classes, retreats or longer programs.

All our doctors and presenters will be here to answer your questions and give you tips. If you have attended our events join this group to be a part of our family.

Please like the main SHARAN page and join the group(s) applicable to you.

The year gone by

Each time we go on a long-distance drive, we tend to frequently check if we are on the right path. Life is the biggest and the best long-distance journey that we ever take, so it’s important that we pause just as often to reflect and assess that we are on the right path.

Our mission at SHARAN is to build a culture of health. It saddens us to see so many people fall into disease when it is so easy to stay healthy. What also motivates us to keep going is the plight of millions of innocent animals and the degenerating condition of our environment. Truly just by changing what we eat, we can build health, compassion and protect our planet. It really cannot get easier than that.

So our action plan is to bring awareness and provide support. This is how we did it in 2019:

1. Over 500 events

With the team growing, we were able to conduct an unprecedented number events, both free and paid. We truly believe ‘Alone we can do so little, Together so much more.’ A spec

2. Gujarati & Hindi recipe books

Taste is paramount but one needn’t forsake it by switching to a whole plant based diet. We already feature over 500 recipes on our website and a host of recipe videos on our YouTube channel. We also have our English recipe book. For the benefit of many more, we released the recipe book in Gujarati and Hindi too.

3.  Collaborations

In 2019, we joined hands with Dr Sailesh Rao of Climate Healers who are doing commendable work for the environment. We also thank the brilliant Sanjeev Kapoor and his team for putting together delicious vegan recipe videos. Eminent ophthalmologist Dr Bhujang Shetty also read Dr Nandita Shah’s 21 Days to Reversing Diabetes and has been spreading the word consistently.

4.  SHARAN Global Village

This is probably the biggest achievement of 2019. We always dreamed of a dedicated centre and now that dream is getting closer to reality. The bhoomi pujan has been conducted.

5.  Interesting events

We have had a line-up of interesting events to include a potluck every month, food pop-ups, kitty parties, book readings, detox programs, ecopreneur workshop and even a Breatherian talk! We also had our first 14 day retreat – Rejuvenate.

6. Restaurant & catering college training

With the world fast moving towards a vegan future, we identified the emerging demand for culinary experts and held intensive training sessions for potential chefs and existing chefs.

7. Free talks

For the first time we reached out to Hong Kong and Belgaum, apart from many hosting a series of free talks in the US.

8. SHARAN organic store

We opened our second store in Malad in Mumbai this year.

9. 100th SHARAN newsletter

Yes, we crossed the mark!

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This newsletter was compiled by SHARAN Head of Mumbai, Reyna K Rupani, She facilitates the Six Weeks to Health Gain & Weight Loss program and also conducts health talks for schools, groups, corporates and more.

Edited by Vasanti Sundaram, Bangalore who has also benefitted from the SHARAN programmes, and now spreads awareness of plant based lifestyle through her talks.

Sanctuary for Health and Re-connection to Animals and Nature (SHARAN) is a social enterprise with the goal of spreading awareness about holistic health and an ecologically sustainable compassionate lifestyle.

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