You need to know: Plant foods are the best foods for most people, unless one has a known allergy to a plant food. That’s the short answer.
So, here we go again. ANOTHER book emerged to assuage people’s guilt feelings about eating plenty of animal proteins. This recent work had a unique slant and became a best seller. People were hoping it made for a great argument to eat lots of animal protein.
It would have but for one thing. The real world, NATURE, stepped up and got in the way of the premise of that book.
This time the clever author selectively chooses information to argue that because plants make a poison to repel insects attacking its leaves, those very same, naturally-made insecticides are strongly correlated to the cause of chronic diseases in humans. That substance? It is called Lectins.
And for those who have an allergy to some plant foods, eating those allergy-triggering foods would definitely be a bad idea. But for most people, people who have no allergies to specific plant foods, eating plant foods is most likely the best diet for optimal health. So, let’s look at this new book, this emergent theory, through the eyes of one who has no allergy to plant foods.
There is no way to refute the real-world, often-proven, discovery that chronic diseases are highly correlated to a lifetime of eating animal proteins and that PLANT FOODS REMAIN YOUR HEALTHIEST CHOICE OF FOODS.
Bottom line: it remains true that if you want to live longer, healthier, with energy and vitality, and, if you want to minimize chances of contracting long-term, (chronic), diseases like heart attacks, high blood pressure, strokes, some forms of cancer, even some forms of arthritis, and more, a whole, fresh, plant-based foods diet is the best diet, based on the real-world results by doctors and researchers.
The following doctors have bent over backward to convince the world that their successes in stemming, even reversing, chronic disease results from reversing diets strongly correlated to consuming animal foods. In other words, optimal health comes from eating mostly whole plant foods. [In my End Note I provide only a sampling of some of the best works on this subject. But interested readers can dig deeper by reading more of the works of: Dr. Esselstyn, Dr. Mirkin, Dr. John A. McDougall, Dr. T. Colin Campbell, Dr. Dean Ornish, and many more.]
So, what of this recent book pretty much warning people to be wary of plant foods?
Common sense tells us that, since plant foods are the foods which are NUTRITIONALLY DENSE we NEED TO EAT PLENTY OF PLANT FOODS to get our daily requirements of vitamins, minerals and other nutrients. And, yes, plant foods do contain protein. We do get all the protein we need from plant foods. By comparison, we often get too much protein, (a known cause of osteoporosis), when we eat animal protein.
Two informed doctors stepped forward to severely critique the premise of that recent book that tries to convince the less-educated reader that plant Lectins are so dangerous as to cause long-term, (chronic) diseases. [See End Note #1 and #2.]
Who are these doctors?
- Colin Campbell, PhD, is THE PRE-EMMINENT RESEARCHER who built the science that strongly correlates chronic diseases to animal PROTEINS and longevity to a plant-based diet, something that would not emerge from the research if Lectins caused chronic disease and shortened lives.
- Dr, John A. McDougall, M.D., has been helping thousands of people, IN THE REAL WORLD WITH REAL-WORLD RESULTS, by moving them to a strict diet away from a lifetime of animal protein, to a whole plant-based food diet, (PLANTS!!). He witnessed the devolution of health as generations gravitated away from plant-based diets to animal-protein-heavy diets and helps people to course correct a their early-disease and early-death trajectory.
One of the most thrilling discoveries resulted from the work of another doctor, Dr. Caldwell Esselstyn, Jr., M.D, who has assembled hard, irrefutable, scientific proof that amazing results can happen by switching away from animal protein to a plant-based diet. He certainly does not worry about the Lectin in plants.
Dr. Caldwell Esselstyn, Jr., M.D., ALSO can prove with REAL-WORLD SCIENCE and real-world results, that artery and heart disease can be stopped and even reversed by switching away from animal proteins to a diet consisting strictly of whole-food, PLANTS…results that would be impossible if plant Lectins were truly the cause of the very chronic diseases being stopped and even “reversed” by switching to a 100% whole foods, plant-based diet. But Esselstyn insists on one more caveat in addition to 100% plant-based: “NO OILS!!”
Bottom line: unless you have a gluten, or other allergy, plant foods remain the healthy choice for most people.
- “‘The Plant Paradox’ by Steven Gundry MD– A Commentary.” By T. Colin Campbell, PhD and Thomas Campbell, MD. T. Colin Campbell Center for Nutrition Studies, August 23, 2017.
- “Lectins: Plants’ Self-Defense Circuitously Kills People.” By John McDougall, Dr., The McDougall Newsletter. May 2017, Vol. 16, Issue 5.
- “What do Centenarians Eat?” By Dr. Gabe Mirkin. Dr. Mirkin’s Fitness & Health Newsletter. Jan 31, 2016.
- Prevent and Reverse Heart Disease: The Revolutionary, Scientifically Proven, Nutrition-Based Cure by Caldwell B. Esselstyn Jr. M.D.