In 2008, three weeks before my forty-fourth birthday, I had a heart attack. I was not really surprised, because of my family history and my lifestyle. My father died in his fifties from a massive heart attack; as did his parents. My mother suffered from heart problems as well and finally died from heart failure. My three siblings and I all have dealt with cholesterol and/or blood pressure problems in our adult lives. I always assumed an early death due to heart failure was just my destiny.
After my heart attack, a friend introduced me to The China Study. I was amazed at the research, and when I implemented the suggested lifestyle changes I had some success. I lost weight and my numbers improved but I wasn’t able to maintain them on my own without a real plan. I was on and off the whole-food, plant-based diet for the next few years until I finally gave up.
A couple of years ago my cardiologist brought the whole-food, plant-based diet to my attention again. He said that at my age I could easily make a significant change in my future health. At about the same time my wife came home with the movie Forks Over Knives. After watching it, I could see real-life changes achieved by eating this way. It took me another year until I was introduced to a plan to implement this lifestyle; again from my cardiologist. He said “You can do anything for 28 days” and said The Engine 2 Diet was something I should look into.
I told my wife how my doctor wanted me to try the 28-day challenge in The Engine 2 Diet. She graciously offered to make all the meals in the plan for me for the twenty-eight days if I wanted to do it. So with much prayer and a little trepidation I started eating the whole-food, plant-based way. Big changes began to happen almost immediately. Weight started coming off, and my blood pressure and cholesterol began to improve.
Here I am a year later, sixty pounds lighter and with numbers low enough to stop all medication. I have more energy than I have had in years. I ran my first 5k this past year and plan on running a 10k next year. I have friends who are amazed at the change in me, and some have even started to eat this way as well. Thanks to my cardiologist Trey Chandler, my wife Tammy, and of course Forks Over Knives for the encouragement I needed to change my life for the better … forever!
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