This is the book that started it all for me, Eat to Live by Dr. Joel Fuhrman. One evening I was watching a PBS show and there was a doctor talking about the occurrence of heart disease in America. According to the CDC, about 610,000 people die of heart disease in the United States every year, that’s 1 in every 4 deaths. Heart disease is the leading cause of death for both men and women with more than half of the deaths due to heart disease were in men. The speaker was Dr. Joel Fuhrman, author of Eat to Live.
Every year about 735,000 Americans have a heart attack. Of these, 525,000 are a first heart attack and 210,000 happen in people who have already had a heart attack. Why is this happening I thought to myself? After listening to Dr. Joel Fuhrman, Author of Eat To Live, I was thirsty for more. As a next step I bought the book and consumed it over the next few weeks. It has a lot of data, statistics, and references to studies that prove and reinforce key points about specific eating choices and the effect diet has on health.
One of the studies referenced in the guide is the China Study by Dr. T. Colin Campbell. The China Study examined the relationship between the consumption of animal products (including dairy) and chronic illnesses such as coronary heart disease, diabetes, breast cancer, and prostate cancer. The authors concluded that people who eat a whole-food, plant-based/vegan diet, avoiding all animal products, including beef, pork, poultry, fish, eggs, cheese and milk, and reducing their intake of processed foods and refined carbohydrates will reduce or reverse the development of numerous diseases.
Based on this study and the information provided in Eat to Live my nutritional plan was changed for the better. It is one thing to be told to eat more fruits and vegetables and a completely different thing to learn why a plant based foods have such a dramatic and lasting impact on your health and well-being. This book gives concrete information about the effect that foods are having on your body and how to make a change from a diet high in animal products and processed foods to one that focuses on real, natural foods that improve health.
One of the tips that Dr. Fuhrman gives in the book made a significant impact on my transition from eating meat to going largely Vegan. That is, instead of focusing on removing things from your eating, in the beginning, focus on adding more fruits and vegetables. What was so amazing for me is that once you do this, you being craving fresh foods instead of processed ones and you begin eating healthier with ease. This was a major win for me as someone who always loved sweets and processed foods. I had intense cravings that only went away when I begin introducing natural foods to my diet.
The other aspect of the book which I found incredibly helpful is to understand that salad should be the main meal, not a side dish. Keeping this one strategy in mind can help to transform your diet and make a dramatic improvement to your health. Since reading the book and applying some its suggestions, I’ve begun eating in a manner that has lowered my cholesterol, improved my energy and outlook on life.
I highly recommend Eat to Live as a staple in your educational nutrition transformation. I’ll write reviews on additional titles but this should be the mainstay of your resource library.