Friday, March 30, 2012


A friend who is a physician told me about The Plant Based Diet.  The premis is that most of your calories come from plant foods without resorting to sugars and oils.  My husband and I decided to try this Monday through Friday and to relax and have the animal products on weekends.  After three days on the plant foods, the animal foods were not pleasant in large quantities as they had been.  What's more, I longed for Monday.

Today a woman came from a life insurance company to take blood, urine, etc.  Here's what 10 days on plant based diet has done.
  • lowered my blood pressure from 140/90 to 126/80
  • lost over 7 pounds
  • made it easier for her to find a vein 
  • decreased appearance of varicose veins and the pain of them
  • doubled bowel movements
  • lowered my need for sleep by 2 hours/night
  • made routine physical activity much easier
 Why such a fast change in my health.   The endothelium, the lining of my blood vessels, has had a chance to heal.  When I get the results from cholesterol and other tests the nurse did today, I'll let you know the result.  This is the most hopeful I've been in years.  

May 13 update: The bloodwork that was taken by the nurse finally got back to me.  Here are some key numbers.  Even though I am updating this in May, the blood that was tested was 10 days after I began plant based eating.  The purple numbers were taken in 2010, I got the blood report from my records. 
Chemical: ##  (normal-range)
Glucose: 79  (60-109)
Cholestorol: 149 (140-199) This range is high.  Dr. McDougall would insist that the range should be 90-160)
HDL Cholesterol: 48 (35-100)
LDL Cholestorol: 71 (0-129)
Cholesterol/HDL 3.1 (<5.0)
LDL/HDL  1.48 (0.6-4.3)
Triglycerides: 150 (0-150) This number bothers me. 
Fructosamine: 1.6 (1.2-2.0) measures ave. blood sugar concentration over past 2-3 weeks
HGBAIC  5.7 (3.0-6.0)  another indication of blood sugar over past several weeks
BUN 9 (7-22) 15 Blood urea nitrogen, the end product of protein metabolism.
Creatine . 0.7 (0.6-1.3) .76 A product released from muscle tissue and excreted from kidneys
Alkaline Phosphatase 74 (30-125) Enzyme primarily in liver and bones.  Elevated levels signal problems with bones and/or liver.  Levels naturally high following bone fracture, in growing children, and in pregnant women.
Bilirubin Total 0.5 (0.2-1.2) is a breakdown product of red blood cells.  Abnormally high levels may occur in individuals with liver and gallbladder disease.
AST: 13 (0-33) 22 is an enzyme found in the liver and in cardiac and skeletal muscle.  AST may rise in liver, heart, and muscle disorders or following strenuous or prolonged exercise. 
ALT: 12 (0-45) 26 a liver enzime that rises with liver disease
GGT: 14 (0-45) is a liver enzyme.  It may rise with alcohol consumption, certain medications, and liver disease)
Total Protein: 6.8  (6.1-8.2) Protein in blood includes two major  components, albumin and globulin.  Protein levels fall in chronic disease, malnutrition, and cancer. 
Albumin 4.0 (3.8-5.2) Decreased blood albumin may indicate many disorders including poor nutrition and advanced liver disease.
Globulin 2.8 (2.1-3.9) Abnormal levels, both elevated and decreased, may indicate infections, allergic states, immune disorders and other diseases.
No sugar in urine (there never was because I've never been diabetic) 
Protein in urine: 22