As I got older my cholesterol went up, I eventually had high blood pressure and I had a bad case of acid reflux....so I was on medication for all three. I wasn't really over weight. A few pounds more than I would have liked, but that just comes with aging and less exercise than I used to do. I didn't really think it was a big deal until last year when I experienced the death of several friends and watched my Dad try and recover from a major stroke and slip into vascular dementia. I have to give credit to my brother Bob, here. He was the one that sort of threw down the gauntlet. He considered my dad one of his best friends, and watching him slip away was a kick in the ass that he needed to find a better route of living.
Bob started watching some of the movies that have been around, "Forks Over Knives", "Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead", "Food Inc." and then he read the book by Caldwell Esselstyn "Preventing and Reversing Heart Disease" and T. Colin Campbell "The China Study". He passed these on to me and I read them as well. Before I even finished the Esselstyn book, I started eating a 100% whole food, plant based diet and I eliminated cooking or adding additional oil to my food. That was April of 2012.
Three weeks after I started the new "nutrition plan" (I don't call it a diet as I wasn't trying to lose weight) I lost 15 pounds. I felt amazing. Depression that had hung over me for years seemed to be lifting. I had a ton of energy and clothes that had been starting to feel tight, now fit (or were really loose). Three months after I started, I weaned myself (with doctor's permission) off of my blood pressure medicine, stopped taking my statin medicine for cholesterol, and, with the help of Apple Cider Vinegar and water, stopped taking Prilosec after about 10 years.
My brother, his wife Janet (who was a vegetarian for years but has now adopted this program) and I are having fun figuring out how to cook and eat all over again. Even Janet's mother, who was a huge skeptic, has gotten on board. We make our own whole wheat bread, hummus, potato chips, tortilla chips, mayonnaise, refried beans, burgers, onion rings...even pesto, all oil free and 100% plant based.
By the fact that I'm not cooking for my friends the way I used to, and how different my brother and I look, we get asked a lot how we did and continue to do it. I don't proselytize about my new way of eating....I only talk about it if asked. But for those that ask, I'll try and blog some of our discoveries or thoughts as I go along.
PS -FEEL FREE TO LEAVE COMMENTS, QUESTIONS AND SUGGESTIONS IN THE COMMENT SECTION BELOW. I WILL ANSWER THEM AS FAST AS I CAN.