The McDougall Plan

Maybe you caught the post at the end of October titled, ‘Live to Eat‘ where I mentioned the movie Forks Over Knives, Food Matters and Food, Inc. Some eye opening information contained in these three films that got me looking at the food I eat, what goes into it and why there is questionable regulation from the FDA. Much to my chagrin I too have been “eating to live” off the “standard American diet” or SAD. After looking at my diet, yes indeed it is sad, but that doesn’t even begin to describe just how bad it has been for 41 years.

Upon further research I ran across a book authored by Dr. John McDougall titled The McDougall Program. This book I found after reading up on his clinic he runs out of Napa in Northern California. While I don’t have the money to spend 2 weeks at his clinic, the $20 book provides a “Step-by-step guide for changing your diet and solving your health problems.” This has been the first step in changing my diet.

It’s been the last week of October that I had any turkey, chicken, pork or beef. I won’t give up fish as many varieties contain high amounts of omega 3 fatty acids, something the body does not produce. Plus it will allow me to share a wider varieties of meals with my wife, who hasn’t bought into the idea of a plant-base diet, but it’s of little concern to me right now. So far the book has presented a nice case study that I can relate with, as I have a number of health concerns I want to improve on or eliminate.

While I said purchasing the book was the first step, now that I am reading and digesting the information contained, I have slowly started to change how and what I eat. As mentioned I have given up meat with the exception of fish. I am working giving up on oils and butters to cook with, find alternatives when it comes to sauteing vegetables or adding to a recipe. I am also slowly giving up dairy products. Right now cheese is still a minor part of my diet, but it’s being used in moderation. Finally, sugar. Anything that is processed, it’s amazing to see just how many “healthy” products seem to have some sort of corn sugar derivative included.

Along the lines of Dr. McDougall’s plan, I have now made starch the main staple of my diet that includes, brown rice, quinoa, potatoes and beans. To the surprise of my wife the last two recipes I have made she has absolutely enjoyed eating, which included a Lentil Stew the other night with brown rice or a baked potato. All of these recipes can easily include chicken or turkey if she so desires.

I have seen some results already since modifying my eat habits. My weight has dropped from 213 to around 206 since October 30. That averages out to about 2.3 pounds a week, which is considered healthy. While weight loss wasn’t the top reason for making a change, it’s nice to know I am also working on getting back to a weight I feel better at (190 lbs).

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