This post may contain affiliate links. Click here to read my affiliate policy.

It’s so cool to see that over 2 full weeks has gone by. It really does feel like an accomplishment. And something that I want to maintain for real, after I’m “finished”. Well, finished w/ the challenge at least.

I read a new book yesterday that I’ve been meaning to pick up for a while. It’s called Prevent and Reverse Heart Disease: The Revolutionary, Scientifically Proven, Nutrition-based Cure by Dr. Caldwell Esselstyn. My friend Sarah is always making recipes from both of the books I’ve mentioned and I’ve been meaning to pick it up.

If you know someone with heart disease, you and that person should definitely read it. I’ve already recommended it to a couple friends. The More You Know…

Prevent and Reverse Heart Disease book

Prevent and Reverse Heart Disease book

My Take on Prevent and Reverse Heart Disease

I really do like the book, even if I have not much of an internal connection with the heart disease message. Of course I know a lot of loved ones with heart disease, but my main focus has been centered around cancer since that’s what my Dad died of, finally.

But considering he had heart disease as well as many others I know, it still does hit close to home. My philosophy generates from the idea of preventing ALL types of disease, including cancer, heart disease, diabetes, etc. I’ve seen the effects of too many of these to be interested in even coming close to their effects personally.

And also I feel that the more educated I am, and the cleaner I eat, the more I influence others around me to walk a similar path. And making small changes in anyone’s lives can add up to big ones over the long run.

Comparing Esselstyn and Fuhrman

So I read the book with an eye towards Fuhrman’s Eat to Live as well, and compared the two. The recommendations from Esselstyn’s book are far more strict because it is intended mainly for people who already have heart disease. His plan is basically 100% no-oil vegan, limited salt and sugar.

So I’m doing that right now on my challenge anyhow, so that’s fine, but the benefit for me is that I can use a lot of his recipes (what attracted me to his message in the first place) and adapt them only slightly to fit Fuhrman’s style. Meaning no salt or sugar either. Though Furhman’s plan is 90% strict, and 10% whatever you want. And Fuhrman is for limiting grains to zero to one serving per day, while Esselstyn is a proponent of whole grains every day. And also Fuhrman is for limited fats from avocados and nuts, while Esselstyn is against those in general.

It’s refreshing to find another source of this kind of stuff. I guess lots of people consider it like…”radical” because it involves such a huge shift, and because our social lives are so entrenched in food and drink…but I love the quote by Dr. Dean Ornish:

I don’t understand why asking people to eat a well-balanced vegetarian diet is considered drastic, while is it medically conservative to cut people open.”

It’s this idea, “Yeah! Why is it crazy to eat vegan, but not crazy to transplant a vein from one part of the body and sew it to the heart?!” as in the case of a bypass surgery. It is crazy.

It’s Your Mindset and Awareness

I get the fact that the former is a complete lifestyle overhaul. But it’s kind of the same thing as saving for retirement. You know that you need to [eat healthy/save for retirement]. You hear the message in your ears countless times throughout your life, even in teenage years, even if your parents didn’t teach you. But yet you still choose to turn a deaf ear to it and act like it’s not real.

Well, until the moment that you finally realize it’s too late to start when you should have.

Awareness is the most powerful thing in your life. And until you allow yourself to become more aware and listen to that voice in your head that really does know what’s best for you, you will continue to reap the same results.

So when I read this concept in his book yesterday, “After twelve weeks of eating no animal foods, dairy, or added oils, you lose your craving for fat.” And I am inclined to believe it. What if you could get rid of that monkey on your back that is always “making you” get the donuts? What if he just wasn’t there anymore? Wouldn’t you feel free?

Like, the most free you’ve ever felt? I know I feel an extreme sense of freedom now with my choices. And that’s why I might even extend my challenge to 3 months instead of 1.5. It can’t hurt. Haha.

Deep thoughts for the day. :-)

Take charge of your own life! It’s the only one you get.

Had plain oatmeal with raisins, almonds and almond butter for breakfast

Had plain oatmeal with raisins, almonds and almond butter for breakfast

How I’m Feeling

So I definitely am feeling better. The cravings that spring up occasionally are controllable and I like feeling good 100% of the day instead of none of the day when I’m eating bad stuff. I’d rather eat well all the time than feel only mostly good most of the time.

I haven’t had enough to eat the past few days, since I was trying to like…lose weight faster. I know, I know…but that’s a thing we all want to do, I think. So today I took a deep breath and refocused on what is important to me…and it’s most certainly the health thing. And hey, I’ve lost 6 pounds, and am at a weight I haven’t seen for over a year, so I’m basking in that rather than wishing I was somewhere else.

Baby steps.