Author: Rip Esselstyn
Publisher: Grand Central Life & Style, 2016
First Lines: "Back in 2005 the Austin American-Statesman ran an article called 'Tofu Outmuscles Red Meat at Firehouse.' At the time I was helping my fellow firefighters at the Engine 2 firehouse become fire-breathing, dragon-slaying, plant-based demigods. That tofu comment made for a catchy headline, and the article made our firehouse famous, but it's more than catchy. It's true. Tofu does outmuscle red meat." (From Chapter 1).
I had previously read Rip's two previous books, The Engine 2 Diet and My Beef With Meat (now called Plant-Strong) and found both to be informative and engaging. Rip is the son of Caldwell B. Esselstyn, a cardiac surgeon who, along with T. Colin Campbell, is well-known for his association with the Forks Over Knives documentary. You can watch the trailer for that here.
If the research is true, there are good reasons to avoid animal protein. As I read, I was concerned that there were no footnotes to back up the research Rip was quoting. At the conclusion of Part I, however, he directs readers to a weblink where all of the footnotes are listed so we can examine the science for ourselves.
The book is very easy to read. Rip has a conversational style that can border on cocky, but don't let that put you off. Our health is at stake and that is too important. According to the author, if you follow the seven-day plan, you can look forward to better triglyceride, LDL and HDL cholesterol numbers, lose weight and feel much better.
Part I of the book explains why we
- love plants
- love whole foods
- don't drink our food
- care about calorie density
- limit protein
- limit salt, sugar, and fat
My husband and I used to follow a more vegan diet than we do now, and are planning to give this diet a try to recapture better eating habits. First, we have asked our doctor for a lipid panel test (blood-work), so we can see what affect the diet has on our cholesterol, etc. We are waiting for a call-back from our doctor's office to find out if she needs to see us in person or if we can just pick up a requisition. Hopefully we can start the plan on February 2.
We will use the seven-day menu provided by Esselstyn because it is easier than creating our own at this time. When we have concluded the seven days, we will have our blood retested and I will report back to you our results.
My Rating: 4 stars (prior to implementation)