Two books & a tray of muffins

I’ve been reading a couple new books in keeping with my goals of learning everything I can about heart health. One is “My Beef with Meat” by Rip Esselstyn and the other is “Prevent a Second Heart Attack” by Janet Bond Brill.

Having read “The Engine 2 Diet” I found Esselstyn’s work to be on par with his previous writing. He takes a long path toward making convincing arguments for the benefits of a plant based diet. The recipe section of the book is arguably more important. At least in the sense that it shows the reader and home cook what he needs to know in order of ingredients that support all the authors claims. I’ve only made the pumpkin muffins so far but they were in fact pretty good. And with no fat or sugar added definitely on the nice list this Christmas.

Anne's Pumpkin Muffins
Anne’s Pumpkin Muffins
I found this section of Brill’s book to be particularly useful. (You see I’m very fond of lists and regimentation). She provides the following set of daily guidelines to promote a healthy cholesterol profile.

  • 1 cup of oatmeal.
  • A handful of almonds (1.5 ounces or about 30).
  • 2 Tbsp. of ground flaxseed.
  • 3 (to 10 as you work up to it) grams of psyllium husk.
  • 1/2 cup legumes.
  • 1 apple.
  • 2 to 3 grams of phytosterols per meal.
  • 20 to 25 grams of soy protein.
  • A clove of fresh garlic plus one Kyolic.
  • Exercise or walk for 30 minutes.

It bears mention that the lessons I picked up from “Dr Dean Ornish’s Program for Reversing Heart Disease” remain firmly in my daily routine. Heart health is literally holistic. At least in the sense that it is comprised of daily practices of a plant based diet, meditation, exercise, emotional support and connection and a commitment to yourself. To live well. Not to beat yourself up anymore but to experience things as they come and let them pass as all things do.

I’m finding both books to be helpful contrasts between the “Mediterannian Diet” and the full on Ornish/Esseltyn ways of thinking toward combating the number one killer in America.

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