Toni Okamoto was trying to make her family healthier when she started the blog that would become Plant Based on a Budget, a website for meal planning, recipe sharing, and education about the affordability of a vegan diet.
By the time she first posted vegan recipes on her family blog in 2012, she had seen her grandfather pass away due to complications from heart surgery and an aunt amputate a toe and foot due to Type 2 diabetes.
“I had just started learning more about food issues, so in my early 20s, I thought, ‘OK, this is really frustrating and sad for me to sit here and do nothing while my family is suffering,” Okamoto told NBC News.
But over the past five years, Plant Based on a Budget has built a growing reader base, with more than 120,000 followers on Facebook.
The success has allowed, Okamoto, now 30, to author a cookbook, “The Super Easy Vegan Slow Cooker Cookbook,” which highlights 100 healthy, low-maintenance recipes, as well as co-author “The Friendly Vegan Cookbook.” She was also featured in “What the Health,” a documentary…