Monday, September 5, 2016

Eat for Health by Joel Fuhrman, M.D. - Book Review #160


A while back I watched a movie called, Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead by Joe Cross.  In the movie Cross regains his health by going on a fresh juice fast for 60 days.  It was so inspiring that I went out and bought a juicer of my own.

I made maybe a dozen juices but kept thinking to myself that I would rather eat all that good food than drink it.  I went back to the movie and found an interview that caught my attention, it was with Dr. Joel Fuhrman who is the author of a best-selling book called Eat To Live.  Through exploring his bibliography I found the book that has changed my life: Eat for Health.

Instead of being a diet book, it is more a eating lifestyle manual.

I have tried many diets before and always kept thinking that there simply must be a better way to eat.  But with all the conflicting information out there it is easy to run onto the wrong track and simply gain weight year after year.

Like Joe Cross of the film, I was getting sick; overweight, a high-normal blood pressure, elevated cholesterol, sleep apnea and sore joints, I was well on my way to a life of pharmaceutical solutions.  I didn't want to have a bunch of pill bottles in my life.

It was in Fuhrman's book that he laid out a simple mind-set to food choice; what delivers the most nutrients per calorie?  If you look at the vitamins, minerals and other nutrients the body needs you need to choose the ones that provide the most for the least calories.  Natural foods tend to be low in calories as a matter of course so the calorie side of the decision making really does not enter into it.

I did not jump right into his eating plan but gradually introduced more and more nutrient rich foods while scaling back, and eventually eliminating, the nutrient poor ones.  He even has a three step plan on how to slowly move away from the traditional North American diet to one rich with plant-based foods.

It is in no way a vegetarian diet but you'd be surprised at just how much vegetarian foods go into this healthy way of eating.  To be honest it feels like I get to eat way more food than before.  However, it is a lot more work.  I have never spent so much time in front of my cutting board preparing fruits and veggies and making meals from scratch.

I've been working on this eating plan for six or seven weeks now and have dropped 25 pounds; from 243 lbs to 218 as of this writing.  ( Saturday, August 20, 2016 )  I don't feel deprived and I can indulge in a pizza and beer night once in a while without feeling guilty about it.  And that is the key to this kind of thing; don't beat yourself up if you fall off the wagon once in a while, just get back on the next day.

I borrowed the book from the public library and will soon by purchasing a copy of my own.  My wife is impressed with my progress and is thinking about following the plan too.

Highly recommended.

Dr. Joel Fuhrman

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