Wednesday, April 24, 2019

Easy Way to Lose Weight — Go Plant-Based

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While I don’t really like the word “lazy” I’ll just go with it, because so many people tell me that they are just too lazy to go plant-based or to lose weight. I think there are actually a lot of psychological reasons behind not losing weight or not going plant-based, none of which have anything to do with someone being lazy. Lazy is a convenient word to cover up a lot of emotion, but for the sake of this post, I’ll just stick with the term most people have come to use for themselves “lazy”.

The notion of going plant-based or having a lot of weight to lose can be daunting. Let’s take weight loss – we’ve been sadly taught through advertising and shows like “the biggest loser” that losing weight is going to be this horrible and difficult thing that we have to abuse our bodies, work out insane amounts, starve ourselves or drink some sort of shake or take some kind of pill to accomplish.

And as far as switching to a plant-based diet? People start looking at recipe books and see words that they have never heard of – I mean what the heck is “nutritional yeast?!”. And then you start throwing the word “vegan” around to friends and family and you get tons of negative responses to it, and you are left feeling overwhelmed and feeling like it’s just too much work.

Well, on both accounts, I’m here to help. It doesn’t have to be as hard as most people think of it, in fact, dare I say it can be a heck of a lot easier than whatever you are doing now.

Let’s start with changing to a healthier plant-based menu.

If you feel that you are lazy – I’m going to take you through the easiest way of getting this done.

1. Get a garbage bag. (or 2 or 3).

Go through your kitchen first. Plan about 30 minutes to do this. Get rid of ANYTHING that has ANY animal ingredient in it and while you are at it ANY oil (yes including olive oil or coconut oil) and anything with high amounts of sodium and next, SUGAR (except fruit of course).

So – toss the bad food out. I could go and explain why all animal foods are bad, why oil is horrible or why sodium and sugar are going to help you stay fat – but you want easy, so instead of me writing a 60 page post, just trust me and get rid of it.

Now that you have gotten rid of every thing you will need to shop.

2. SHOP

You will need a shopping list. That is what I am here for. This is very easy now – not a lot of thinking goes into this.

You can eat :

  • WHOLE grains (brown rice) or bread like Ezekiel bread.
  • Beans – find the no salt added kinds.
  • Veggies and fruit (as much as you’d like)
  • Non-dairy milks: Go for the no added sugar ones.
  • Oatmeal
  • Healthy cereal: Like unsweetened shredded wheat, just ones that only have like 2 ingredients.
  • Potato’s (including sweet potato’s of course).
  • Corn tortillas and whole wheat tortillas
  • Pomi chopped tomato’s (they are in a box rather than a can)
  • Spices – lots of spices.
  • Whole grain pasta or brown rice pasta

3. Make it even easier:

Buy frozen brown rice – most stores carry it and it’s super easy, pop it in the microwave and you have rice. I mean how easy is that?

Buy cans of beans – be sure there is no salt added.

Buy frozen veggies and fruits. Makes life easier.

Buy pre-cut veggies like mushrooms, greens, celery.

4. BUT WHAT ABOUT???

Read above – if you want this to be easy, just trust me, all the books I will recommend are going to say the same exact thing. I recently finished my Plant Based Certificate, I can tell you with out any doubt that there is mounds and mounds and MOUNDS of studies that can not be argued. If you’d like, I can send you all the books, documentaries, lectures and articles if you want to take the time to read it – I think that is great, but if you don’t have time, just go with it.

5. Meals:

Let’s make it super easy, ok?

  • Breakfast: cereal (one of the healthy kinds) or oatmeal.
  • Non Dairy Milk
  • Fruit – as much as you’d like.
  • want to get fancy? add some ground flax seed. (found in the baking section)
  • Snack: Fruit or cut up hard veggies. or a slice of Ezekiel bread with a sugar-less jam.
  • Lunch: Brown rice, beans, chopped tomato’s, frozen greens and lots of spices.
  • Snack: see above.
  • Dinner: big huge salad – whatever you have in the fridge with some balsamic vinegar is generally good. Throw some chick peas on it – go ahead, get wild.
  • Dessert: Fruit – or blend frozen banana and non dairy milk and some frozen cherries. It’s like ice cream.

The point is with meals is to make them simple and not that big of a deal. You can shake some spice onto anything and it will taste even better. You don’t have to think so hard about food. Have a simple grocery list, SIMPLE as in a few ingredients, and only a few places in the grocery store you have to bother with.

6. Get it delivered

You’d much rather be home watching the latest episode of Glee than out figuring out what you need to buy to eat. So many grocery stores do delivery. And it’s CHEAP like 7 bucks, that is way worth your time.

So get online while you are in the middle of a commercial or in the middle of work and make your grocery list and get it delivered. How much easier could that be?

AND

I just found out about this great service through Dr.Pam Poppers Wellness Forum! You can get healthy plant based meals DELIVERED to you. I mean, what else could you ask for? Skip the gym membership cost and get home delivery on amazing meals cooked by a celebrity chef and all!

7. Amazon Prime

We have a 79 dollar per year membership for Amazon Prime. It’s 2 day shipping on anything in the prime category (which is a lot). We have ordered cereal, pomi tomato’s, eden organic beans, you name it. It comes in 2 days, to the front door, even if you order 50 cans of beans.

8. Pre-make food

Buy a big huge bag of potato’s (sweet or whatever makes you happy) cook them all at once during American Idol or while you are working way too late at home or while the kid is napping. You now have a potato anytime you’d like – throw on some beans and greens and you have a meal.

9. Going out to eat.

Ok, you won’t be the envy of your friends on this, but who cares, you are getting healthy, avoiding things like getting a disease that will cause amputations – deal with it.

Going out can mean some hardship, but you can do it. Glance the menu find things like baked potato and steamed veggies or brown rice or beans. You don’t even have to look at the menu, ask the waiter “hey can I just get a plain baked potato, a side of veggies and beans?” chances are they will help you out. Or, maybe whole wheat pasta and veggies and a plain tomato sauce. Or corn tortillas, rice, veggies, beans and salsa. It’s not super fancy, but it is easy and it can be done.

Don’t let eating out get to you and don’t let it be a reason to slip into your previous habits.

10. Get it all of your system and then you don’t have to worry.

I have a ZERO tolerance when it comes to cheating. I have this because I know how the brain works and I know that if most people allow “ONE” thing, like ONE cookie, that’s it – change of behavior is over.  Plan on being grumpy for a few weeks, but once all of the addictions are out of your body, you won’t have all that temptation anyway. Be hard-core about the first 2 months, make it easy, but make it stick.

11. What about working out?

Well, you have a couple of options. First option – don’t work out. That’s right, I said it. The more you eat this way the more energy you will have and the more likely you will want to move. So, if you want to just wait for that – go ahead. Just be sure you are sitting out in the sun for about 15 minutes per day. But you can do that on a beach chair if you’d like while talking to your bff.

Second option: Work out for 5 minutes, 5 times per day. I’m not talking anything hard. Walk around the building for 5 minutes, walk up and down stairs, walk while you are on the phone. Move during commercials. It doesn’t have to be much – just something and in 5 minute bursts.

12. Watch Movies!

Want to just get all of the info out-of-the-way while snacking on some no butter popcorn? Watch some movies on all of this.

You can google (look on youtube) any of the following people:

  • Dr. Cadwell Esselstyn
  • Dr. McDougall in fact, here is a great one on dairy.
  • Rip Esselstyn
  • Dr. Jeff Novick
  • Dr. Pam Popper
  • Dr. Collin Campbell
  • *just to name a fe

Want to understand being vegan?
Watch Earthlings – and I suggest not eating during it, it’s the truth, but it’s hard to watch. You can even watch it for free online:http://www.unleashed.org.au/features/earthlings/

13. How do I deal with people in my life?

If you are reading this, it’s because you want to lose weight. I’m guessing the people in your life understand that you want to get healthy and lose weight. So just tell them you want to get healthy. If you want to go into more depth tell them that you are learning a lot about how to eat.

14. What if I get bored and actually want to make some fantastic meals?

You are in luck, I’ve already searched the internet for every healthy plant-based meal for you: cleanserecipes.com

There are hundreds and hundreds of plant-based healthy and tasty meals – if you want to go down that road, great, have at it! But if you want simple, you can do simple.

You just have to decide that this is it, you are not going to mess around with measuring or fancy stuff, or even gym memberships. You are just going to change the way you eat – and you are going to do that by making a shopping list that is short and doable.

15. But it doesn’t taste good.

Tastes change over time. Your taste buds have been screwed up with a lot of junk that you’ve been putting on them. So your idea of what tastes good and bad or bland or not bland is going to have to adjust. This will take about a month-six weeks. Just go through it, be bored with food if you have to, but know that in the end a baked potato will taste like that fancy meal you had out somewhere. Just let it happen and don’t mess with your brain or your taste buds while they are trying so hard to change.

16. This still seems hard.

I almost lost part of my leg to diabetes – that would have been hard. I had an impossible time getting up and down stairs, that was hard. I had to pay over 500 dollars per MONTH for diabetes medicines and treatments – that was HARD. I have people write to me who are widows with small children because their spouse dropped dead from a heart attack, leaving their family behind – that is hard. I know people who have suffered through treatable cancers with surgeries and radiation – that was hard. I have seen people on dialysis 4 hours per day every day because of diabetes – that was hard. I know people who have lost limbs because of diabetes – that is hard. I have seen friends lose their parents far to early because of obesity and heart disease, that is hard.

The word “hard” is something you tell yourself because you don’t believe in yourself, because you have been told that you are not capable. Chances are you have done things far harder than switching out a few foods. You have been in a bad relationship, moved, taken a college test, had a kid, raised a kid, broke a bone, had the flu. You have done those things without thinking that you can’t do them because they are ‘hard’.

Don’t wait to make these changes when you don’t have a choice. Don’t wait till you are sitting in a doctor’s office being told that they might have to amputate part of your leg. There is no food worth that, and no excuse great enough.

Going plant-based and losing weight does not have to be hard. We’ve been taught that it is hard, we’ve been taught that it’s going to take some magic or will power or something that we just don’t have. It takes ONE simple decision – do you really want to avoid things like type 2 diabetes, heart disease, obesity, and most cancers? Once you make that one decision the rest is up to you – are you the type of person that will be healthy or not? You can do this, there are thousands of people who are doing this very thing who have fought cancer with out drugs, who have reversed diabetes and who have lost 100′s of pounds. It is completely possible, it’s just a decision that you have to make.

In the end….

Why do I have so much confidence? Because my husband and I have been doing this, living this way, learning all we can and it hasn’t been all that difficult to make the changes – and together, we’re down 200 pounds.

Make it easy on yourself, go plant-based, and get healthy.

5 COMMENTS

  1. Donna
    Your comment is awaiting moderation

    I’m new to the vegan lifestyle, but have followed the diet for 1 week! Last night I ordered a tofu dish-my first! Would love have a cookbook that I could learn from. Thanks! Donna

  2. Cristy
    Your comment is awaiting moderation

    I love your blog. Love it! It makes me feel good in a way that I WANT to be better, change, eat good foods and make good choices. Your view is simple: plant-based. It might not be an easy change when fast food rules so many lives, but it’s so simple. And like you said, it is sooooo much easier than losing a leg, getting cancer, or not being able to walk. Maybe it’s not always fun, but life is more fun in general when you’re healthy than when you’re in pain (or worse). Anyone CAN do it if they CHOOSE to do it.

    so… Thank you… just for being you and sharing that will the world.

  3. Lisa

    Great, thorough, inspiring post! You continue to ROCK, dear Natala.

    Thank you for your ongoing energy and devotion to this process!

    One question: Can you help me understand your moratorium on oils? good fats? avocados?

    My husband and I consume all of the above, and are able to maintain healthy weights, live vibrantly, avoid illness, and have both lowered our cholesterol. (Him by over 100 points…and mine is now 136, down from 195.)

    Please advise…

  4. Nat

    So … on oils. and fats.. I think that some of the natural fats like in real olives, avocado, nuts and so on are just fine if you used sparingly especially for people who are not overweight or obese – adding fat on top of fat – is never a good idea for people who have tons of weight to lose or severe heart conditions. So if those things are part of your diet every so often – I don’t think it’s all that bad (if you don’t have any health problems) I also stay away from tofu and tempeh – because of the fat. My husband on the other hand will include some soy, but he has far less weight to lose than I do, so it works for him.

    I will add ground flax seed to cereal – but not use the oil since it is processed.

    For oil – it’s a processed food, and it’s 100% fat – there is no nutrient in it. The best people on oil are : Dr. Novick (he’s got an AWESOME DVD called From nuts to Oils). Dr. Esselstyn is also a great resource on the subject – his book “Preventing and Reversing Heart Disease” is also really great, Dr. Ornish has a lot to say on oil as well. Engine 2 is also a good diet and resource (but it covers a very wide view of health , including why to go plant based) 🙂

    My rule is to strive to eat ONLY whole foods, foods that are not processed and broken down. I stress this most of all for people who are obese, adding in processed fats is so detrimental to weight loss.

    Here is a bunch more 🙂

    Olive oil, which got its big “heart healthy” start with the Lyon
    Study, wasn’t even used in the study. The study volunteers didn’t like
    the taste of it, so canola oil was substituted for olive oil. All the
    benefit that we attributed to olive oil, was actually from Omega-3
    enriched canola oil.”

    *This is not to say canola oil is good – but if you are comparing bad things to bad things canola oil is actually healthier – AGAIN don’t go and get canola oil 🙂

    Attached is her compilation of the research that led to her to conclude (after much deliberation):
    “Olive oil–forget about it, except in tiny amounts.”

    Here’s Why You May Want to Think Twice About Olive Oil
    https://www.happyhealthylonglife.com/happy_healthy_long_life/olive-oil/

    From Dr. Ornish: It’s 100% fat and 14% of it is
    saturated. At 120 calories a tablespoon it’s very easy to eat too much
    of “a bad thing”. It won’t raise your LDL as much as butter or other
    saturated fats will, so it might look like it’s reducing your
    cholesterol, but it’s still raising it. It’s just not raising it as
    much other fats would! It’s the omega-3′s that reduce inflammation and
    are “heart healthy”, and olive oil has very little omega-3, maybe 1%.
    It’s mostly omega-9, which has been shown to impair blood vessel
    function. Canola and flax seed oil are much higher in omega-3′s–and
    are much healthier oils to use. Just go easy on them!

    From Dr. Vogel of the University of Maryland:
    This is the study that convinced me! Back in 2000 Vogel based his study
    on the Lyon Heart Study, which is the big-time study that got us all to
    eat the Mediterranean Diet. He wanted to see how olive oil, salmon
    (fish oil) and canola oil actually affect the blood vessels. Using the
    brachial artery tourniquet test he had 10 healthy volunteers with
    normal cholesterol ingest 50 grams of fat, in the form of olive oil
    & bread, canola oil & bread, and salmon. Measuring their
    arterial blood flow before & after each meal Vogel could tell
    whether or not a meal was causing damage to the endothelial lining of
    the brachial artery, based on how the blood was flowing through the
    artery after the meal was eaten. The results really surprised him. The
    olive oil constricted blood flow by a whopping 31% after the meal; the
    canola oil constricted it by 10%; and the salmon reduced it by only 2%.
    Why should we care? Because when the arteries constrict, the
    endothelium (the vessel’s lining) is injured, triggering plaque
    build-up, or atherosclerosis. Vogel RA. Corretti MC. Plotnick GD. The
    postprandial effect of components of the Mediterranean diet on
    endothelial function. Journal of the American College of Cardiology.
    36(5):1455-60, 2000 Nov 1. Similar results have been found it later
    studies. This isn’t just a one-hit wonder. Interestingly, walnuts,
    which have Omega-3′s have also been shown to improve blood flow by 24%
    using the brachial artery tourniquet test. Go omega 3′s!

    How does olive oil constrict blood vessels?: Dr. Vogel
    discovered back in 1999 that a high fat meal blocks the endothelium’s
    ability to produce that all important NITRIC OXIDE, which is a
    vasodilator and critical to preserving the tone & health of our
    blood vessels. When olive oil constricts the blood vessels it’s because
    it’s blocking the production of nitric oxide. Not a good thing!

    From Dr. Lawrence Rudel of Wake Forest University Baptist Medical Center:
    Rudel ran a five year study feeding olive oil and saturated fat to
    African Green monkeys. The monkeys metabolize fat in the same way as
    humans, so they’re good stand-ins.. At the end of five years, their
    autopsies showed that the monkeys who were fed olive oil had higher
    HDLs (the good cholesterol) and lower LDLs (the bad cholesterol) than
    the ones fed the saturated fat diet. The big surprise here: Both groups
    had exactly the same amount of coronary artery disease. The higher HDLs
    & lower LDLs of the olive oil group were meaningless. Rudel later
    repeated the study on rodents, and got the same results.

    From Dr. Esseltsyn: Dr. E tells a story in his
    book about Rev. William Valentine of North Carolina who had a quintuple
    bypass in 1990. Since his surgery he followed a strict plant-based
    diet, dropping from 210 pounds to 156 pounds. For 14 years he
    maintained his weight & his diet. But by 2004 he started to
    experience a recurrence of angina, especially when he exercised. He
    promptly contacted Dr. Esselstyn after reading about his success in
    reversing heart disease in a health newsletter. Valentine wanted no
    part of a repeat bypass or other intervention. He assured Dr. E that he
    only ate whole grains, legumes, vegetable & fruit. A baffled Dr. E
    prompted him to repeat once again everything he was eating, leaving
    nothing out.
    “He had forgotten to mention that he was consuming “heart healthy” olive oil at every lunch and dinner and in salads. It
    was what they call a Eureka moment. Immediately, I advised him to give
    up the olive oil. He did–and within seven weeks, his angina had
    completely disappeared.” Dr. Esselstyn

    What does Dr. Esselstyn advise?: When it comes to olive oil, canola or any oil–FORGET ABOUT IT.

  5. Cristy

    That is crazy about oil, and just goes to show how the media and “the new health craze” can become ingrained in everything. I never knew olive oil was so much worse than canola. But to see how bad any oil is, that’s crazy! It makes sense, but still contradicts what I’ve been “taught”.

    Thank you for the info!

  6. Nat

    Yeah – I was shocked about oil. I will say that taking it out hasn’t been a big deal – at all. I don’t miss it, and I found out I just didn’t need it in cooking. And – I don’t need MORE fat, I have plenty of that 🙂

  7. Barb
    Your comment is awaiting moderation

    Hi Nat,

    First, let me start by saying you are amazing. Sharing everything you’ve learned by talking the talk, and proving it works by walking the walk. Many have walked down the weight loss path(s) but you are the proof that or choices of food are what make the difference. Big food and big pharmaceuticals are making for a slow death for our fellow humans. Bravo to you and the others for getting the word out!

    Now for my question. I’ve cleaned my pantry and fridge of sugars and oils. But what about maple syrup, agave syrup, stevia etc? Should I get rid of those too?

    Your thoughts are most appreciated!

    Warm regards,

    Barb

  8. Eric

    Instead of throwing the animal products out, you should give them to a friend. That will actually save some lives! (bc this person won’t have to buy the foods you give them for awhile!).

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Nat
I went on a plant based diet after diabetes almost took my life. Now, almost 2 years later not only have I reduced my type 2 diabetes symptoms, I have lost close to 200 pounds (and still losing). This is a place where I write about my journey as I continue the quest for health, and living a good life for today, and long into the future. Get hold of me on [email protected]

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