Sunday, October 27, 2013


A few years back I had some health issues.  Heart related.  Reading, research and a great doctor had me reassess my eating and health habits.  This was not as straight forward as it sounds.  I had no history of high cholesterol, no high blood pressure.  None of the typical warning flags that go along with heart problems.  Life stresses like everyone yes. At first I moderated what I ate excluded red meat and cut back on dairy.  After a year I had another scare and when I came out of the hospital my wife and I took a look again at what I was doing right and wrong.  Since the first incident we moved to a country farm house and began growing our own food to help defray the cost of the fresh produce that became more and more a centerpiece of our diet.  I say "our" because to my  wife's credit she changed her diet to reflect mine.  She didn't have to, but being supportive and from both our research we found that it could only help her health too. So we began our journey down the road to vegetarianism.  We both look back now and say it truly wasn't as hard as it seemed at first look. We are not vegan, we still eat eggs(we have our own flock) but we eat very little dairy and the only meat in our diet is fish typically once a week.  In some ways we are more vegetarian than most vegetarians.  Many recipes in most vegetarian cookbooks bury the dishes in cheese.  We are virtually cheese free except some hard cheeses like pecorino romano and fat free feta.  The hard cheeses we use a bit on our pasta dishes for flavor no more than a tablespoon.  Fat free feta is used in some of our salads.  Our Sunday mornings are omelet day and we typically have mushroom omelets with a fake cheese called "Rice Shreds".  It melts just enough in an omelet to be convincing and to make us not feel too deprived.  Actually that is the amazing thing we don't feel deprived.  We have found so many new dishes that we felt like we eat like royalty.  Our cooking skills and exposure to other cuisines has increased dramatically.  Our independence from fast food, and prepared foods has been a benefit to our health and our wallets.
My purpose in writing here is to chart our progress from carnivores to herbivores, from medically damaged to healthy.  From just consuming to self sustaining.

2 comments:

Tony said...

I srongly suggest you go 100% Whole Food Plant Based. No Oil as Dr. Esselstyn recommends. I eat a similar diet to your's and my CVD progress slowed, but got too the point open heart surgery was recommended. I went 100% on Esselstyn's program and in year, it reversed from severe to moderate and surgery was no longer recommended.

Doug Schmidt said...

Thanks for the comment. I eventually did go WFPB no Oil per Esselstyn. now 9 years after my heart issues I am off of all medications even a daily aspirin, lost 60 pounds and am running my first marathon at age 58. Talk about the fountain of youth.