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« Plant-Based Eating Confusion! Omega-3s, Omega-6s, Glycemic Index, ORAC Index and More. A Picture, a Chart, and the ANDI Rankings Help Clear the Confusion. | Main | My Esselstyn Plant-Based Diet Trial Results Are In. Understanding the Numbers and Why No Oil or Nuts Makes Sense. Think Weight Loss, Lowering the Omega-6s, Healthy Arteries, and Energy »

July 20, 2010



Thanks for all the updates and recipe suggestions. Because of your posts I've gotten one of Dr. Esselstyn's books from the library and am slowly attempting to go fat-free (I'm already vegan). I'm curious - what is your favorite green smoothie combination(s)? I've tried a few and haven't found one I would make everyday.


Thank you for your very informative blog. I would be interested to hear your views on Dr. Richard Feinman, who has been in the news a lot recently, and who argues rather convincingly, I think, in favour of a carbohydrate restricted diet.

Healthy Librarian

Hi Linda,

Thanks for sharing Feinman's research. Will look at Feinman's article in more depth later--but after a quick look (from my non-scientist eye) it seems that his "low fat diet" is like comparing apples to oranges to the Esselstyn diet. I'm getting getting on average 10% or less of fat in my diet, and over 45 grams of fiber (fills me up, keeps blood sugar steady, and helps remove cholesterol). Feinman's low-fat group was eating about 24% of fat a day, and about 17% of fiber. A diet so low in fiber indicates lots of fast-digesting refined carbs--exactly what contributes to metabolic syndrome.

Sure fats slow down digestion, but a diet so high in fat (59%) has to be bereft of all the nutrients one needs for excellent health. Good health isn't just about weight loss!

And lastly, looking closely (with my non-scientist eye), Feinman's, so-called consistently greater improvements in atherogenic dyslipidemia need to be analyzed more closely by an expert. I'll see if I can find someone to do that.

Both groups improved--but the improvements in triglycerides of the high fat group would be attributed to the low-carb intake---and the lesser improvements of the "low-fat" group would be consistent with eating low-fiber, more refined carbs---not a high quality whole grain carb diet.

Could go on--but I don't have the time right now. But, last point---this was a 12 week study---the most important piece would be looking at the blood vessel health of the "high fat" group 1 year down the road.

Looks similar to the Atkin's results--good weight loss, short term good lipids, but no long-term arterial health--and constipation. Bottom line the goal is healthy endothelial lining, and no inflammation!


Neat spice rack. Is that built in?


Thanks for taking the time for your detailed reply regarding Dr. Richard Feinman. I have been following Drs. Joel Fuhrman and Caldwell Esselstyn's dietary guidelines for some time now, while trying not to overdo it with fruit and grains, and was rewarded with excellent results for recent blood cholesterol tests. However, I am intrigued by the reasoning of low carb advocates, which began when I read about research done by Cynthia Kenyon with C.elegans worms and how the outcome so dramatically influenced her personal diet.

Ann D.

My husband and I started the whole plants diet after watching the documentary, "Forks Over Knives'. After 4 weeks we had our cholesterol checked and were amazed by the results. My husband's cholesterol before the diet was 200, after 4 weeks it was 107, and mine went down to 129 from 220! I never felt hungry, we ate plenty and had no cravings for "bad" food, however we did feel like social pariahs. If this diet can keep me from the list of diseases associated with high fat, animal & dairy diets, I'm up for the challenge.

The Healthy Librarian

Ann D.,

Way to go! Mega-congrats to you & your husband.

My sister-in-law is now doing her own 100% trial--and I hope her results will be as good as yours.

You did it the best way--jumping right into it, so you can really see the results.

I'm glad that Dr. E. challenged me to do it that way too--and now 14 months later I just keep on keeping on. The longer you're at it--the more your friends & family will understand that this is how you eat--it's not a fad--it's you. And believe me--many will be interested in making changes along with you.

I think of it the same way as keeping Kosher. Absolutely 100% in my own home. And the "non-Kosher" food has been removed. Would only go to the restaurants where I knew I could get "kosher" food--and I might make a few exceptions when necessary at other people's homes so I wouldn't offend anyone. But very few--and not so many that I'd cross into the slippery slope territory.

My husband & I still go out with friends as much as before--and eat at other people's houses--but you work out a way to make this work. Choosing the healthier options when you're at a restaurant (picking the best restaurant choices) or when going to someone's house--bringing a dish to share--bringing your own salad dressing in a small container.

I don't preach or try to convince anyone that my way is the right way--but within my circle of friends, relatives, & co-workers--some have made a major switch--some have made smaller changes--but no one now makes me feel like an odd-ball. They all get it.

They can see how fit, slim, healthy & active my husband & I are--and there's no argument against that!

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