Healthy Cooking and Healthy Recipes
Plant Based Cooking • Plant Based Recipes
Once upon a time in Kodiak, Alaska, I was a healthy cooking mama, using healthy recipes. Or so I thought. Wild salmon, olive oil, organic greens from the garden, whole grain bread, Greek yogurt, fragrant cheese. All was well in our little house on the cliff above the ocean. Plant-based cooking and following plant-based recipes was as far from my mind as walking on the moon.
Then in the fall of 2016, during an RV trip in rural Utah, my husband Marty had a mini-stroke. He was sitting across the dining table from me, talking on the phone, when suddenly he couldn’t sound out words. His episode last five minutes.
The next morning, we drove to the nearest hospital, 40 miles away. Confused and scared, I prayed the whole way. What did I do wrong? What does this mean about our future?
Back home, we talked to our doctor. “Diet plays a huge role in how well you live, and how well you die,” he told us. “I suggest you watch the documentary, ‘Forks Over Knives.’”
In Forks Over Knives (forks being a dinner fork and the knife is a surgeon’s knife) we learned that “heart disease, cancer and stroke are the country’s three leading causes of death, even though billions are spent each year to ‘battle’ these very conditions.”
Forks Over Knives examines that there is a single solution to all of these problems, saying that most, if not all, of the degenerative diseases that afflict us can be controlled, or even reversed, by rejecting our present menu of animal-based and processed foods.
When the movie ended, I sat on the couch, and stared at the blank screen, stunned.
“What do you think, Marty?
“I think we need to change our diet,” he replied.
In November 2016, we switched to a whole food, plant-based (WFPB) diet. Cold turkey, LOL.
What is a whole food, plant-based eating plan?
Here’s a definition from the Forks Over Knives blog:
“A whole-food, plant-based diet is centered on whole, unrefined, or minimally refined plants. It’s a diet based on fruits, vegetables, tubers, whole grains, and legumes; and it excludes or minimizes meat (including chicken and fish), dairy products, and eggs, as well as highly refined foods like bleached flour, refined sugar, and oil.”
At first, I felt lost without my favorite cookbooks. We missed cheese and butter. It took 6 months for my pallet to accept that there wasn’t going to be any more roasted chicken, Parmesan cheese and popcorn cooked in olive oil.
Since then, I’ve tested recipes, found new cookbook buddies, and shared our story with friends, family, and at service group meetings and conferences. Did I mention that we’ve both lost weight? Read these amazing success stories.
For decades, the studies have been mounting: One of the fastest ways to stop heart disease in its tracks is by adopting a plant-based diet. In the Harvard Medical School’s Heart Health Letter the article, Halt heart disease with a plant-based, oil-free diet supports that eating more plants is the key to optimum health. “Diets that emphasize vegetables, whole grains, and legumes can even reverse the amount of cholesterol-clogged plaque in your arteries.”
You can’t be an environmentalist if you’re not eating a plant-based diet. And you can’t walk the walk in the world of the future, the world ahead of us, the world of our children, not eating a plant-based diet. — James Cameron, film director
The evidence over the last 25 years supporting a low-fat, plant-based diet is overwhelming. Just ask former President Bill Clinton who, after undergoing quadruple bypass surgery in 2004 and another surgery in 2010 to insert a pair of stents, regained his health and lost 24 pounds after adopting a plant-based diet.
So as you sit down to your Thanksgiving dinner remember to give thanks. Then ponder what you’re eating. If you’re inwardly flustered and confused, consider what Bill Clinton shared in his interview with AARP…
“I wanted to live to be a grandfather. So I decided to pick the diet that I thought would maximize my chances of long-term survival.” — Bill Clinton
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