I have a friend I have known for about 4 years, who’s married with two beautiful daughters. Unfortunately he isn’t the healthy guy I have ever met. He is overweight (probably borderline obese on charts), has diabetes, high blood pressure, most likely high cholesterol (although I have not asked, just know his eating habits) and he is a smoker. As I wrote about him before, he would be a prime candidate for Dr. McDougall’s 12-day program as he reminded me of Sam Waterman, who saw outstanding results in just 12 days eating a plant-based, whole foods diet.
I probably got a bit pushy and preachy at times when it came to the success I was having by following Dr. McDougall and his ideas. Still not sure why it took 41 years to finally figure out where good nutrition begins, but it wasn’t with meat and dairy products as we have been lied to since early childhood. How could I not share the secret to my success when I was in the midst of dropping 44 pounds and improving my total cholesterol to 130? These results equate to nothing short of amazing for me! I am still surprised at how I have gone from poor health with headaches, foot and abdominal pains to where am I now, relying on no medication and the healthiest I have ever been.
It takes that “ah ha moment” when something clicks and you finally comes to that realization. For me, it was a combination of identifying my state of health when I went for a routine check up at the dentist and I could not remember all the medications I was prescribed. Thankfully I have a co-worker who follows a plant-based diet and she recommended the documentary, Forks Over Knives. It was that documentary that got me interested in nutrition and taking control of my health.
Last year my overweight and “sick” friend commented to me during a family barbeque, “man needs meat! as he stood over his grill that was full of chicken and beef. For him, it was seeing the changes I had gone through, losing the weight, improving my blood numbers and cooking foods that are both healthy for you and good to eat. He wasn’t convinced, as he continued his eating habits, which was not governed by portion control. If he continued down this road, early death was a distinct possibility.
About 2 weeks ago he and his wife watched Food Matters and Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead with Joe Cross. Her husband could have easily pass for Phil Staples, the truck drive Joe Cross meets in the documentary. While not as obese as Phil, he needed to make drastic changes in order to take control of his health. These two documentaries have opened his eyes in a way I have never seen. The guy who once subscribed to “man needs meat” has been plant-based for just over 2 weeks and has dropped about 20 pounds! He told me last night over Chef AJ’s Disappearing Lasagna (I also made him a doggy bag for lunch) that he was feeling ribs he had not felt in years! Talk about a positive change, this was such great news!
I see much jubilation and excitement in his step and the way he talks. His wife is quite excited over the changes he has made recently, as she too is now following this way of eating. He currently belongs to the same gym as I and has been going on a regular basis, using some of the machines and walking on the treadmill. This in itself is progress. Who knows, maybe in the coming weeks/months I can get him on my weight lifting routine. It thrills me to see a good friend take control of his health and make such positive changes.