At 248 pounds, I decided to adopt a ketogenic diet: low on carbohydrates and high on protein. I lost about 60 pounds, so at first I thought I had the whole diet thing figured out. However, I felt terrible. Knowing something wasn’t right, I went to the doctor for a physical.
Hair-Raising Blood Work
The doctor was impressed that I had lost weight (at that time I was 185 pounds) and that I seemed to be in good physical condition. A few days after my physical, my doctor’s office called and told me to come in immediately. Once I arrived my doctor showed me the results of my blood work. We were both appalled. My total cholesterol was 323 and my triglycerides were 800. This was after fasting for almost 24 hours. My doctor told me that I was potentially only months away from a heart attack or stroke. He immediately tried to prescribe a few different medications for cholesterol and high blood pressure. I asked if there was any way that I could reverse this naturally, and he told me that it was genetic and that I needed to take the meds.
A Natural Solution
I left the office and decided to do some research myself. I was determined to reverse course without using medication if I could. I quickly found that lowering my cholesterol had everything to do with eating fewer animal products and more plants. I then watched every plant-based/vegan documentary there was, including Forks Over Knives, and made the switch immediately. I went from a low-carb, ketogenic diet one day to a 100 percent whole-food, plant-based diet the next. My kids were pretty confused; I had been on a low-carb diet for so long they’d never seen me eat fruit or rice and grains.
Within a few months, I was down to 165 pounds and, more importantly, my cholesterol was at 120 and my triglycerides were less than 100. All of this happened without any medication! My wife, who is now plant-based, too, has been my biggest supporter and my chef. We enjoy a wider variety of foods than we did before going plant-based, and we feel great after eating.
My friends have said that they can see a huge difference in my appearance and energy levels. I’m enjoying life more than ever and have found two new passions: fantastic plant-based foods and distance running. I’m 37 years old and feel like I’m 20 again!
Ready to get started? Check out Forks Meal Planner, FOK’s easy weekly meal-planning tool to keep you on a healthy plant-based path.