Diet is a Touchy Subject. I discovered long ago that diet beliefs can be very divisive indeed. Together with the hot topics of politics and religion, our food choices can rank quite high as a personal issue to be handled with care. I realize that most ...

Addressing Biblical Objections to a Plant-Based Diet

Diet is a Touchy Subject.

I discovered long ago that diet beliefs can be very divisive indeed. Together with the hot topics of politics and religion, our food choices can rank quite high as a personal issue to be handled with care.

I realize that most of you have preconceived beliefs about what constitutes a healthy diet, and I’ve heard some doozies in my day. But because The ‘Plan A’ Diet combines the two tenets of “diet and religion” into one conversation, many of you will write to me about passages that seem to promote or endorse meat eating.

Here I address some of the passages I hear most often, along with my response.

See how good and pleasant it is when brothers,
and sisters live together in harmony! (Psalm 133:1, GW)

 

Pear Spice Upside-Down Cake

Do you like spice cake? Then you’ll love this easy-peasy, oil-free version by Susan Voisin at the Fat Free Vegan website!

Pear Spice Upside-Down Cake has turned out to be one of our favorites.  Susan’s cake turned out much prettier than mine (her sliced pears on top resembled a Christmas tree, mine resembled ……well, nothing but randomly sliced pears!)

You can see her pretty design on the above link.  But here’s a photo of how mine turned out:

The only thing I noted is that the recipe calls for 3 LARGE bosc pears, and apparently the pears I used weren’t large enough. I would recommend buying at least 5 pears since you’re going to need 1-2/3 cups of pear sauce in addition to the sliced pears on top. You may even want to buy SIX pears – you can always have the extra as a snack! In any case, if you come up short on the required pear sauce, you can add applesauce until you have enough.

If you give this a try, let me know how you liked it!

May you be encouraged today by God’s promise as you trust Him in all things:

But I will bless the person who puts his trust in me. 

He is like a tree growing near a stream and sending out roots to the water.

It is not afraid when hot weather comes, because its leaves stay green;

it has no worries when there is no rain; it keeps on bearing fruit. (Jeremiah 17:7-8, GNT)

 

What is The ‘Plan A’ Diet?

And why should you consider it?

Why shouldn’t we eat oils?

 

 

 

What I learned at the SWFL Veg Fest!

Friends and I recently attended the 2nd annual SWFL Veg Fest held in Bonita Springs, FL.  It was a well-organized and well-attended event (estimated 15,000-18,000 people), which was about 10,000 more people than last year!  Here were a few of my personal highlights

Dr. Scott Stoll (& Cyd)

The first speaker we heard was Dr. Scott Stoll, author of “Alive! A Physician’s Biblical and Scientific Guide to Nutrition”.  I enjoyed reading Dr. Stoll’s book a few years ago and so it was truly a pleasure to hear him speak about how a whole food, plant-based diet affects our bodies on a molecular, cellular and genetic level.  He explained angiogenesis (the formation of new blood vessels) and how a plant-based diet can prevent those blood vessels which feed cancer cells. He also explained how we can CHANGE not only our own genetic make up in real time with the right diet, but how we also affect TWO generations that follow (for example, a pregnant woman can change her own genes, plus that of her child and grandchild). I’ve only touched the surface of what he covered. So much great information in a one-hour session!

As part of the Plantrician Project, Dr. Stoll is on a mission to transform the world of health and health care through the message of plant based nutrition and lifestyle medicine. He and his team equip leading physicians and health care practitioners worldwide with the education and resources they can use to empower their patients to prevent and reverse the most common diseases.

And for those of you who are truly ready to tackle those weight and health issues, Dr. Stoll offers a Total Health Immersion week-long retreat where you will receive education and the practical skills to adopt a healthy lifestyle for good.  I highly recommend Dr. Stoll’s book as well as the many admirable projects he’s undertaken to spread the word on the benefits of a plant-based diet and healthy lifestyle! Look him up.

I also ran into Christopher Carnrick, a fellow “Certified Starch Solution Trainer” who offered a really great cooking demonstration on how to prepare dinner in 20 minutes. The main dish was Moroccan Stew and it was fabulous.  His business, called Pirate Palms, is a plant-based Bed and Breakfast located in Naples FL, which also offers themed dinner parties and cooking classes.

 

Lastly, but certainly not least, I had the chance to speak with Chef AJ and listen to her presentation on weight loss. Calorie Density is the key! Calorie density is the number of calories in a specific weight of food (usually a pound).  You can find more about Calorie Density in my blog titled How is it Possible to Weigh Less by Eating More.

 

The event offered many other great speakers, a fitness stage, kids events and a big variety of vendors.  The predicted thunderstorms held off and it was a great day all in all!  For information on next year’s event, visit the SWFL Veg Fest website or find them on social media.   One of these years I would like to offer a cooking demo too!

 

 

FREE Forks over Knives Movie!

Have you seen the award-winning documentary “Forks Over Knives”?  If not, here’s your chance to watch it FREE in the comfort of your home all weekend long on January 26-28, 2018.  This movie has changed countless lives and I highly recommend it!  Follow the link below to get your free streaming access.  (Oh, you’ll also be automatically entered into a really cool sweepstakes!)

Invite your friends and family, make a batch of healthy nachos (here’s a fat-free version) and get ready to be enlightened!

Forks Over Knives Free Movie Giveaway

 

Why exercise?

I had the pleasure of catching up with a friend over the holidays. She’s a slender woman in her 60’s who has always been very physically active (running, biking, treadmill, etc.). But she mentioned that she is no longer motivated to exercise because she really doesn’t need to lose any weight.

I can certainly relate to losing the motivation to exercise from time to time. But as I later reflected on her comments, I made a list of reasons to exercise (OTHER THAN WEIGHT LOSS) that will be good reminders for all of us and help keep our motivation strong.

So here goes……

Aerobic Exercise (brisk walking, running, dancing, step aerobics, tennis, elliptical trainer) gets your heart pumping  – which improves your cardiac fitness by strengthening the heart and lungs, reduces cancer risk, lowers your blood sugar, can help lower cholesterol, improves immune function, widens the arteries to carry away waste products, lowers the heart rate and lowers the risk of Type 2 Diabetes and stroke; plus, the increased vascular benefits also protect your brain from cognitive decline.

Resistance Exercise (weight lifting, using a stretch band, push ups, sit-ups, lunges, body squats) builds muscles. When it comes to muscles, we either use it or lose it. We’re not talking about becoming another Arnold…..you can merely use your own body weight to create the resistance needed to strengthen your muscles.  The benefits include increased muscle mass (which helps prevent frailty and reduces the risk of falling), strengthens bones and improves bone density (this is a BIG benefit in my view), reduces risk of age-related sarcopenia, improves posture and decreases arthritic pain.

Flexibility Exercise (yoga, pilates, stretching) is a great way to prevent injuries and back pain, reduce muscle soreness, improve balance, increase your freedom of movement, and easily accomplish those daily tasks of reaching, bending and stooping. Stretching also increases the blood flow to the muscles.

One more exercise we shouldn’t overlook:

BRAIN exercise.  Give your brain a workout with mental exercises which optimize brain connectivity, help grow new neurons and prevent memory loss. Our brains want to learn and be active! Word games, puzzles, Sudoku are all great options, as well as taking a class, learning a new language, drawing maps from memory, or joining a choir. Some experts suggest that real-world activities are better than the on-line brain training software.

OVERALL benefits:  Even when we eliminate weight loss/maintenance from the list, you can see that the reasons to exercise are incredibly convincing.  In addition to the above, we’re in a better mood (endorphin release), we have a boosted metabolism, a much lower risk of many diseases, we handle stress better, have more energy, sleep better and live longer!  What’s not to love?

HOW OFTEN?  Depending on the intensity of your workouts, the suggested time to spend exercising varies from 30 minutes a day to 180 minutes a week.  I like the 180 minutes a week idea.  That way I can do three one-hour sessions, or four 45-minute session.  The best exercise to do……is the one you will do! So schedule it in your planner and keep it regular.

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(All photos from Visual Hunt)

 
 
   
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