How much would you pay to guarantee that you live a long, healthy, disease free life full of energy? Without worry of getting heart disease, cancer, stroke, diabetes, dementia, or auto-immune disorders? To be able to watch your grandchildren & great-grand children grow up into your 90’s and beyond?
Would you like to eat more, lose weight & prevent disease at the same time? That’s what the Nutritarian diet is all about. But it’s not a temporary diet. It’s a lifestyle choice.
Diet-created diseases have become the norm
Unfortunately, all these diseases have become the norm and we just expect that when we get into our 60s that we will be on some sort of blood pressure or cholesterol lowering drugs. 100 years ago heart disease affected less than 5% of the population. What makes this tragedy even worse is that these heart related deaths are preventable by superior nutrition.
With all the medical advancements for heart disease, cancer, surgery, and drugs, none of it has been shown to actually extend life because it does not address the root cause – a nutritionally poor diet. Drugs & procedures only address symptoms, and don’t do a good job at that.
As Dr. Fuhrman says in his “Nutritarian Handbook”, “This dangerously low intake of unrefined plant foods is what guarantees weakened immunity to infectious disease, frequent illnesses and a shorter lifespan. We will never win the war on cancer, heart disease, diabetes, and other degenerative illnesses unless we address this deficiency.”
On average, Americans weigh 30 pounds more than in the 60s and women are 40 pounds heavier than 100 years ago. I can attest to that and that’s even while trying to DIET!
Why diets don’t work
Diets don’t work and it doesn’t matter what kind you are on – low carb, low fat, high carb, high fat – they don’t work because they require you to deprive yourself and don’t address getting enough micronutrients. We have been inundated with information on some perfect ratio of macronutrients that must be achieved to lose weight, but there is no perfect ratio.
All vegetables, fruits, nuts, seeds, and beans contain protein, fat, and carbohydrates. Most animals are vegetarians! How do you think the gorilla, cow, or buffalo got so big and strong? By eating vegetables! Vegetables are packed with protein. 100 calories of broccoli has MORE protein than 100 calories of steak!
So those who think you have to have a lot of protein to be their healthiest are misled to think that vegetables are low in protein and the only way to get enough protein is by eating meat. This is FALSE and exactly what the meat and dairy industry wants you to believe.
Who do you think sits on the board that created the American Dietary Guidelines….that’s right….people who are in the meat & dairy industries.
Are you a food addict? All unhealthy food is addictive
Unhealthy food is addictive and created this way so you will keep eating and buy more. Follow the money. The processed food industry – yes, even those making those “healthier snack foods” – makes more money the more you eat. So they add salt, sugar, additives, artificial flavors, dyes, MSG, and oil to their foods to make them irresistible.
You end up eating a lot of calories and very little nutrients and never feeling full. Processed food literally rewires your brain to crave more and more. It is as addictive as smoking and drugs, yet socially acceptable.
If you have ever smelled pizza, burgers, fries, fried chicken cooking and tried to not eat it, you know what I’m talking about. It is near impossible. My weakness is popcorn at the movie theater…..the smell makes it darn near impossible to not buy it. I’ve learned to bring my own fat free popcorn and I literally have to run past the concessions…
Are you addicted to food? Most Americans are, but probably don’t realize it.
Lose weight without feeling hungry
You’re body does not achieve satiety (the feeling of fullness) by the number of calories (macronutrients) it consumes regardless of any arbitrary ratio. Satiety is achieved when the chemical AND stretch receptors have been activated. The stretch receptors are in your stomach and are activated when you eat a lot of bulk – so a large meal. The chemical receptors tell the brain that it has received a lot of micronutrients – vitamins, minerals, phytonutrients – and makes you not hungry.
You have to have both and the only way to get both the stretch and chemical receptors activated is by eating large amounts of vegetables, fruits, beans, nuts, and seeds. By doing so you feel full without consuming a large amount of calories, but flood your cells with health promoting micronutrients that can repair your body to prevent and even reverse disease.
You lose weight naturally without feeling hungry and being able to eat A LOT! Who doesn’t want to eat a lot AND lose weight?
Nutritarian diet is all about eating MORE not small portions or restricting
The nutritarian diet plan is all about FILLING our bodies with as many micronutrients as possible. Not just vitamins and minerals which we already know about, but the thousands of phytonutrients from plants most of which haven’t even been discovered yet! Could you imagine a pill that supplied all the thousands of phytonutrients needed? It would be ridiculous! Instead, just eat the rainbow of fruits, veggies, beans, and seeds and get all the nutrients for free with every bite.
Read “Eat to Live” – it just might save your life
I love all the science and research behind why this is the healthiest way of eating. It’s not a diet. It’s a lifestyle change you make forever to achieve your ideal weight and prevent disease. If you go back to eating SAD (Standard American Diet) you will just gain weight again and raise your disease risks with it.
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I highly encourage you to read “Eat to Live” by Dr. Fuhrman to learn about all the science and why this is the healthiest way to eat. But don’t be scared! It’s a really easy read and you don’t need some fancy degree to understand it. Education is the most important factor when it comes to success. You need to know why this works. It will make you excited, but also a little mad once you realize that this information is not mainstream!
There are so many other great books to teach you about the science-based eating.
Here are a few more of my favorite books:
So, what IS a Nutritarian?
Basically, a nutritarian is someone who strives to eat as many high nutrient foods as possible and very little low nutrient food. This is different from just being a vegan. Nutritarian’s can eat some animal products – about 1-2 servings of meat a week – but do not have to. Nutritarians can be vegan, but don’t have to be. Animal products become the condiment and plant food becomes the main course!
Not all vegans or vegetarians are healthy, if they consume a lot of processed foods, white flour, white potato, white rice, added oils, added salt, dairy, eggs, and processed soy products. Did you know Oreos are vegan? That is not healthy.
- primarily a high-nutrient, plant-based foods: fruits, vegetables, beans, seeds, and nuts.
- few animal products (if any) (1-2 servings a week) and chooses leaner options.
- almost no added sugar, added salt, oils, sweeteners, white flour, white rice, white potatoes, fast food and processed foods.
This way of eating basically flips the American diet on its head.
The average American gets LESS than 10% of calories from plants and over 90% comes from meat, dairy, sugar, added oils, and LOTS of processed foods. And OF that less than 10% of plant foods consumed it includes……french fries. Yikes! You take french fries out of the equation and Americans are getting less than 5% of foods from fruits and vegetables.
No wonder we are all so overweight and SICK!
Protein? How much do we really need?
But you say, don’t we need lots of protein? First of all, we don’t need as much protein as you have been told. Secondly, all plants have protein! In fact all plants have all 3 macronutrients – protein, carbohydrates, and even fat. There is little risk to becoming protein deficient as some would like to scare you into thinking.
Did you know that there are MANY professional and olympic athletes that are vegan??? EVEN, body builders! Plant protein provides you with plenty of protein without all the risks of disease that go along with too much animal protein.
Did you know Tom Brady consumes mostly a plant-based diet? Reportedly, 80% of his diet is from plants, not animal products. No wonder he has such longevity in a rough sport and still plays like he’s in his 20’s. He’s in his 40’s!!! There are many more NFL athletes going to a more plant-based to improve performance. Click here to learn more about why NFL players are going vegan.
If NFL players are going to mostly plant-based diets, I think we can pretty much assume that getting enough protein is not an issue for the average American or even athlete.
Related reading: Want to see my progress on my Nutritarian Journey? Click here to see what I ate Week 1!
Macronutrients vs. Micronutrients
There are 2 types of nutrients in food – Macronutrients & Micronutrients. Macronutrients consist of protein, carbohydrates, fat, and water. Excluding water, macronutrients are the calorie-containing parts of food.
Micronutrients are the vitamins, minerals, and phytochemicals (also called phytonutrients). Micronutrients do not contain calories.
Clearly, Americans get too many macronutrients and not enough micronutrients. I think because of the word micro it makes it seem as if they are not important, but this is not the case. They are most important!
By eating a diet rich in micronutrients, you will still get enough macronutrients without over-consuming them. From Dr. Fuhrman’s Nutritarian Handbook, “Eating foods that are naturally rich in micronutrients is the secret to achieving optimal health and super immunity. A micronutrient-heavy diet supplies your body with 14 different vitamins, 25 different minerals, and more than 10,000 phytochemicals, which are plant-based chemicals that have profound effects on human cell function and the immune system.” NONE of the 10,000 phytochemicals are found in animal products or processed foods…
Just within the past 15 years we have found that most of the micronutrient load comes from phytonutrients, NOT vitamins and minerals as originally thought 80 years ago. You can’t take a multi-vitamin and still eat a poor diet and expect to have good health. It is no where near enough. Vitamins and minerals are only a very tiny tip of an enormous iceberg that hasn’t even been fully discovered yet.
Phytochemicals are the fountain of youth
Phytochemicals work synergistically in your body to detoxify, remove and kill cancer cells, repair DNA, deactivate free radicals and so much more. Cells age much more rapidly without phytonutrients so they are literally the fountain of youth!
Dr. Fuhrman’s Nutritarian Health Equation
H=N/C or Health=Nutrients/Calories
You should seek the highest nutrient density food per calorie for greatest health and weight loss. Your body will lose weight easy and naturally to achieve your ideal weight.
Dr. Fuhrman created his ANDI (Aggregate Nutrient Density Index) scoring guide from 0-1000 to make it simple to see the foods with highest nutrient density. The higher the better.
Here is a sample of top ANDI scoring foods:
- 1000 – Kale, Collard Greens, Turnip Greens, Mustard Greens, Watercress
- 895 – Swiss Chard
- 865 – Bok Choy
- 434-715 – Cabbage (all varieties)
- 707 – Spinach
- 367-585 Lettuce (Green & Red Leaf, Boston, Romaine)
- 458 – Carrots
- 340 – Broccoli
- 315 – Cauliflower
- 207-224 – Bell, Green, & Red Peppers
- 238 – Mushrooms
- 186 – Tomatoes
- 132-182 – Berries (All)
- 119 – Grapes & Pomegranates
- 118 – Cantaloupe
- 109 – Onions
- 43-98 – Beans (All)
- 39-103 – Seeds
- 21-60 Nuts
Nutritarian Rules – What to Eat Every Day
- Large Salad – include raw onions & cruciferous veggies (no added oil, low sugar/low sodium dressing)
- Beans or Lentils – at least ½ cup – 1 cup daily
- Fresh Fruit – at least 3 servings – especially berries, oranges, cherries, pomegranates, plums.
- Raw Nuts & Seeds – 1 ounce unsalted (don’t go over 1 ounce if have a lot of weight to lose)
- Steamed Greens – Double-size serving – include onions and mushrooms in your dishes.
Related Reading: Check out this delicious fruit & greens smoothie recipe even my kids LOVE!
It’s important you don’t thwart your healthy food choices by adding oil to your food. Even olive oil – it is NOT a health promoting food. It is 120 calories per 1 tablespoon like ALL oils and does not have significant micronutrients. Limit oil consumption to 1-2 teaspoons max a day. If you need to lose a lot of weight, don’t add any oil at all. Use nuts, seeds, and avocado for healthy fats, but don’t overeat these as well if you need to lose weight because it can slow your progress.
What are your goals that you would like to achieve? Do you want to lose weight and end your food addiction? Are you worried about getting some disease that runs in your family like Diabetes, Heart Disease, Cancer, or Dementia? You can end those fears and lose weight with a superior diet by “Eating to Live” as a Nutritarian.