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    ufatbasted posted:

    I've been on the Ornish diet with the exception of grilled fish once or twice a week and a handful of nuts daily for close to 7 months now. And I've never felt better. I've also had steamed clams and mussels a couple times when I ate out.

    I'm curious if folks following the strict way of eating cheat when on vacations or functions where it's not possible to find Ornish approved foods?

    Also curious if you did cheat and have a cheeseburger or whatever how did your body react? I feel if I ever ate red meat again I may be ill!

    The most I've cheated to date is to have some white rice maybe once or twice and a veggie dish that had oil in it about a month ago. Also the mussels and clams I mentioned above.
    I guess I should consider the fish as cheating even though my Dr. and nutritionist recommend salmon/tuna once or twice a week.

    I would really like to eliminate all animal products from my diet.

    Looking forward to your responses!
    EngineerGuy responded:
    Hi ufb,

    You're doing great. Dr. Esselstyn, with the best results ever published for heart disease, was absolutely a complete vegan. Dr. Esselstyn, Ornish, Pritikin, Fuhrman and McDougall all have said that the best results comes for those who are strictest.

    How are you doing with the veggies? Are you having the goal of a pound of raw and pound of cooked veggies daily? A cup of beans, also? The mega-nutrition from these foods, is just as important as having a low cholesterol level, and minimizing animal products.

    When left to my own devices, I am a total vegan. But I do take the B12 supplements, although it usually takes years before B12 deficiency sets in.

    Breaking the diet, for one meal, is generally fun, for me. That is, unless the cheat meal is packed with salt. After 2 or more meals, I can't wait to get back to the diet. You just feel it, the grease and low nutrition dragging you down. Ideally, I like to keep the cheats to once a month. Sometimes social situations make the cheats come much more frequently. Then I try to do the best I can, usually taking salads, etc.

    Best regards, EngineerGuy
    jc3737 replied to EngineerGuy's response:
    A pound of cooked vegetables is OK but I don't know very many people whose digestive system can handle a quarter pound of raw vegetables much less a whole pound.

    It would seem that a few oz of raw vegetables would be all the digestive system could handle....even for 20 yr olds a half pound every day might be a strain.

    You must have a cast iron stomach that still produces lots of stomach acid.

    One small salad is about all I can handle on a daily basis.The rest is cooked.
    EngineerGuy replied to jc3737's response:
    Hi jc,

    Re: One small salad is about all I can handle on a daily basis.The rest is cooked.

    One large tomato is almost a pound.

    You are correct to only eat what you can comfortably digest.

    The green smoothies are an easy way to take in a lot of veggies (romaine lettuce, spinach, kale, fruit, nuts, seeds, etc), in an easily digested, well absorbed way.

    Cooked veggies are very nutritious, also, of course.

    Best regards, EngineerGuy
    jc3737 replied to EngineerGuy's response:
    I might try to eat more raw vegetables if I could find one shred of scientific evidence they are better than steamed or cooked veges.If you know of any data or if Dr Fuhrman knows of any data would you please post it.I can find some data that points to small (very small)advantages in bioavailability for raw over cooked in some cases but then in the case of some vegetables(like tomatoes and carrots)the advantage is with cooked.Blending does not help me with digestion and I am unable to find any data suggesting blended is any more nutritious than cooked.

    The evidence may be there but I have yet to find it.
    EngineerGuy replied to jc3737's response:
    Hi jc,

    A few months ago, Dr. Fuhrman mentioned a "feather in the cap" for raw foodists, about a nutrient in raw tomatoes that was effective preventing cancer, in animal experiments. Cooking destroyed the nutrient.

    We've known for decades that cruciferous vegetables (broccoli, kale, collards, cauliflower, etc) reduce cancer incidence. For broccoli, for example, the anti-cancer ingredients are created when the raw cell walls are broken, releasing glucoraphanin, which mixes with other cell contents and reacts into an anti-cancer compound sulforaphane. The glucoraphanin would be destroyed by cooling, but the sulfaoraphane survives cooking. So, chop or blend broccoli and let it sit a few minutes, before cooking.

    Actually, I've taken Dr. Fuhrman's word for it, that raw and cooked both have valuable properties. Fuhrman says raw is generally better, but few people can digest a lot of raw veggies, so adding cooked veggies increases nutrition overall, plus some improvements in some cases. It's not an either-or competition.

    If I find something especially interesting, I'll forward it to you. If you can't digest more raw, though, don't stress over it. You're doing great with the cooked veggies. :-)

    Best regards, EngineerGuy
    ufatbasted replied to EngineerGuy's response:
    Thanks EG for the response.

    I'm eating over ton of vegetables a day. Mostly raw though.
    I eat a huge salad for lunch which is well over a pound. I start my day with a green smoothie and also have one before dinner most days.

    I'm eating a ton of beans. Most of the food I eat for dinner consists of some sort of whole grain pasta or rice with cooked veggies or beans.

    I do eat grilled fish once a week as I stated but have not had any red meat/chicken/pork in 7 months and do not see myself eating those foods every again. I've had minimal if any processed pasta and breads.

    My next goal would be to eliminate the once a week grilled fish. That's going to be a hard one as that is my social situation food!

    Thanks again for the response. If I do ever cheat it will be good to know that I'm not the only one.
    dtms1 replied to ufatbasted's response:
    dear ufat, I emailed Campbell and asked about fish consumption in china. There is a foot note in The China Study referring to a chart which gives the amount of animal protein eaten in china. The footnote says non-fish protein which made me think the results in his book may have been different for fish eaters as opposed to meat eaters. He wrote back and said that different amounts of fish are eaten in different parts of china. Lots for those living near the Yangtze and Yellow rivers and none elsewhere. He did not answer my question since I wanted to know how fish consumption as opposed to meat consumption affected the incidence of heart disease and cancer. I also wondered if those who ate fish also ate meat. While he replied with the answer I have indicated, he did not reply when I asked about the result of those who ate fish along with their vegetables.

    Quite a while ago I read about a study done among africans some of whom were vegetarians (and were healthy) and some of whom ate fish and the fish eaters were healthier. I do not remember the details or if there could have been other reasons for the superior health of the fish eaters and the slightly inferior health of the vegetarians. However, I guess I will think fish is beneficial to health until Campbell writes back and tells me otherwise. Am I the only one who wonders about that footnote?

    ufatbasted replied to dtms1's response:

    Thanks for the input and for contacting Colin Campbell. I'm almost finished with the China Study. Reading the China Study and the Omnivores Dilemma I've become convinced processed foods and animal fat are poisons. True or not that is how I now feel.

    The African study you mention is interesting. I started off my new way of eating without fish buy my nutritionist suggest I have it once or twice a week. I will say I do feel better having the fish than I did when I first started taking control of my diet.


    dtms1 replied to ufatbasted's response:
    ufat, if you still have the China Study, the chart and footnote I was referring to are at the bottom of page 358, chart B2. Campbell promptly answered that fish is eaten in some areas of china but it has been a while and he hasn't replied to my question of how fish affects health of those who are otherwise vegan.

    EngineerGuy replied to ufatbasted's response:
    Hi Ufatbasted,

    I'd say grilled fish once a week, is spectacular !!

    Your program sounds terrific.

    My thoughts of pros and cons to consider:

    For the best heart disease reversal, Esselstyn would say to be perfectly vegan.

    Before worrying about the weekly fish, I'd check if you're keeping the sodium low; if you have checked your blood level of vitamin D, in the range 35 to 55 ng/ml (90 to 140 mmol/l)(multiply by 2.5 to get metric units).

    Are you maximizing your nutrient density? I would say that you absolutely are doing a great job of maximizing your nutrient density. :-)

    Are you lean? Yes, you are quite lean.

    Do you exercise daily, or most days? Don't need bone crusher workouts.

    Rather than worry about the weekly fish, I would respectfully suggest that you cut your meals to 3 daily, no snacks. In my opinion, a full night's sleep, and including nuts and seeds, and practice, help the body develop the ability to go without snacks. The benefit is that drawing from your reserves is very healthy. That's why most people's health improve, while they are losing weight, even those on a terrible diet.

    Those are my thoughts. Hope it's helpful.

    Best regards, EngineerGuy
    ufatbasted replied to EngineerGuy's response:
    Thanks EG

    I'm having my blood tested every 3-4 months and my levels are all normal.

    I average 8-10 hrs a week of exercise so I'm good there.

    Interesting doing without snacks. I'm not sure if I can do that.
    My snacks are usually fruit or a handful of nuts. Maybe a smoothie with soy milk and frozen fruits, Nothing bad really.

    My weight is down so low now I'm worried about becoming too lean. I'm 6'2" and am down to 164 lbs. My weight has been at this level pretty steady for the past 3 months.
    I have almost no body fat. Feel pretty darn good too. That all said I do not want me weight to go any lower.

    I guess I'll know for sure if the plan is working when I get my next CT angiogram 16 months from now.

    Thanks for the advice!!!!
    Hanawaiman6358 replied to EngineerGuy's response:
    Hi I have read many times your reasons for no snacks. Dang, I bet I know the answer to my question but here goes anyway. By "no snacks" does that include even veggies? If so, I sure bet fruit is out.
    dtms1 replied to Hanawaiman6358's response:
    I have read nothing in esselstyn or mcdougall or pritikin that requires anyone to be so spartan with their diets that they can't enjoy a simple whole food snack. They all seem to have patients who experienced reversal without going to draconian measures. Of course it goes without saying that if the wholesome snacks are consumed in quantities that would cause weight gain or prevent weight loss then you would be eating too much.

    EngineerGuy replied to Hanawaiman6358's response:
    Hi Hanawaiman6358,

    You guessed it. Not even veggies.

    Hi UFB,

    Great results. Yes, don't lose any more weight. I don't believe cutting out snacks will lower your weight. I guess it might, depending on each person. But that's not the purpose. It didn't change my weight. I don't work out 8-10 hours a week, though. I spend that much time working out, but that includes stopping jogging to feed treats to the dogs along my route, or taking to folks in the gym.

    I have been quite surprised that I've adjusted very well to this. I eat a big smoothie for breakfast, with probably 3 oz nuts and seeds, for about 550 calories right there. Add the raisins, 1/2 banana, 2 prunes, and the veggies, it's near a 1000 calories. Anyway, the first year on Fuhrman, I didn't understand about the snacks. So I would have a normal 10am snack. That was normal for me, for 30 years on the Pritikin diet, to eat 6 little meals.

    Now I don't get hungry until about 2pm or so. Eating at 10am or even noon, would seem like a little shock to the digestive system, very strangely.

    When people lose weight, their health almost always improves, no matter what crazy diet they may be on. The time spent drawing from your reserves, is very healthy.

    Dolores is correct, that people have had wonderful reversal of atherosclerosis while snacking 6 times a day. I believe this is one of the improvements the Fuhrman has created. (The high nutrient density is the biggest improvement.)

    I found a pretty cool link, so I started a new discussion No Snacks "Intermittent Feeding" IF

    Thanks for the question.

    Best regards,

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