Do you want to eat better, feel better, look better, sleep better, lose weight, etc? I do, so I’m trying the Plant Paradox diet. It was created by a doctor based on his patients’ reactions do different foods, those containing lectins and those that don’t.
The allowed ( and disallowed ) foods are chosen based on how his patients respond to them. Not just on what they say, but by doing actual blood tests and seeing how the foods affect their bodies internally. That sounds like real science.
A few years ago my wife came home from work with a book called The Plant Paradox by Dr. Steven Gundry. She had some food allergies and the owner of the resort she works at thought it might help her. He was also hoping that she’d be willing to go on the diet with him so that they could encourage each other.
I wasn’t interested in the diet back then because I thought there was no way that I could survive on it. The Plant Paradox diet didn’t allow any of the foods that I ate, and I wouldn’t eat any of the things that I saw my wife eating.
I didn’t bother to learn anything more about the program.
What Changed My Mind
Fast forward three years or so and my views have changed.
First, my wife feels a whole lot better. Most of her food allergy issues have gone away, she’s lost the weight she wanted to lose, and she looks great.
Second, I haven’t lost any weight. I’ve probably gained actually, but the scale and I aren’t exactly on speaking terms right now. And I got to the point where I felt like crap most of the time.
So perhaps it’s time to take a look at this Plant Paradox diet after all.
The Challenge with the Plant Paradox Diet
As I said, none of the foods that I eat are allowed. Not a single one that I can think of.
- Cooked carrots
- 100% fruit juices
- Meat (chicken or beef) raised on GMO corn
- Not even home-made chocolate chip cookies
I know that a lot of nutritionists agree that some of those foods are less than ideal, but you would think carrots, peas and potatoes would be OK, right?
Fruits are out because they have too much sugar. Fruit juices are just sugar. They appear in the fall and animals eat them to fatten up for the winter. Dr. Gundry calls them candy and says you might as well just eat Skittles. They’ll have the same effect.
I think cooking turns the starches to sugar in carrots and potatoes. That might be why they are out.
He says that meat; like cows, chickens, and fish; contain the proteins from what they ate. So cows, chickens, and fish raised on factory farms all eat corn and soy (usually GMO), and eating them is the same as eating the corn and soy directly.
If left to their own devices, none of those animals would eat corn or soybeans. Cows eat grass. Chickens eat bugs. And how would a fish ever encounter corn in the wild? But that’s what we feed them. It turns out that corn and soy aren’t actually good for them, or us either.
I Also Have Kids
My wife had it easier when she started the diet. She had a job in another city and was living on her own while we were looking for a place to live so that the rest of us could move there too. She only had to feed herself, so she could make all the changes she wanted to her own diet.
And she’s getting the results.
I on the other hand have two kids to feed too. I don’t want to spend all day in the kitchen making three distinct meals three times a day. Ideally, I would like to get them both on board with me so that all four of us could share a meal together from time to time.
My daughter is open to at least trying a few things, but my son won’t have any of it. I think it would be easier if they were still 3 and 5 years old, but they aren’t. Their tastes are established and my son is no more adventurous with foods than I am.
Signs of Success with the Diet
Still, I at least eat something from the Plant Paradox Diet menu for lunch and greatly reduce the portion of non-approved foods I eat for dinner and I’m seeing benefits.
I sleep better and feel better and I have more energy. That’s really all that everyone wants, right?
I don’t know if I’ve actually lost any weight or not because, as I said before, the scale and I don’t talk. My jeans are a little looser though, and my belt comes a little farther past the buckle.
Oh, and it’s only been three weeks since I started, so no, the evidence isn’t as strong (yet) as in the picture above.
Addicted to Carbohydrates
Here’s an interesting thing I have learned. Carbohydrates – pasta, bread and cookies – are very addictive. They must be. Because after eating approved foods for a couple days you feel really good and you don’t feel so hungry all the time.
Then you decide that you can handle a small plate of spaghetti, or a warm fresh-from-the-oven chocolate chip cookie. After you eat, it sits like a rock in your belly and you don’t feel well. And before too long you’re hungry again and craving more carbohydrates.
It has to be an addiction if you know that it will make you sick but you want it anyway.
Plant Paradox Diet Approved Foods
I said that one of the issues I had was the food. Nothing I currently ate was approved and I wouldn’t eat anything I saw my wife eating. Soups and salads don’t excite me and I gag on smoothies. And there’s no way I’m going to eat an avocado!
I have a food consistency issue. My food has to either be a drink with the consistency of water, or solid so that I can eat it with a fork. I can’t do shakes, smoothies, avocados, or anything else that has that really soft consistency. Except for mashed potatoes. I can eat them just fine as long as they are thick enough. And wouldn’t you know it, they aren’t on the approved foods list!
Foods That Are On the List
It turns out that I love cauliflower, broccoli, and onions. Yummy!
And there is a smoothie recipe that is thin enough for me to drink easily, and it has half an avocado in it too!
Just about all real vegetables are on the approved foods list, things like cauliflower, broccoli, onions, leafy greens, etc.
Certain meats are OK as long as they ate their natural diet and were raised in a healthy way. That pretty much excludes any meat that you are likely to get at a regular grocery store other than wild-caught fish. Wild-caught salmon is pretty easy to find and easy to cook in a few minutes.
Nuts are good, as are most spices and herbs so that you can flavor up your food. Olive oil, coconut oil, avocado oil, and algae oil are all approved for cooking with too.
And one fruit is approved – the avocado, of course.
So there really are a lot of things that I can eat, that are very satisfying, other than the things I saw my wife eating.
Now I just have to convince my son that they are good too.
It’s one thing to know that a diet works, but getting it to work for you is another question. You have to like it for it to work long term. You aren’t going to stick with anything you don’t like for very long. And your diet is a long term thing. You aren’t going to change to healthy foods for a few months then go back to unhealthy foods and expect to stay healthy.
Based on my wife’s results I already knew that the Plant Paradox diet worked. The question was if I could make it work for me, and it looks like I can. There are enough foods that I enjoy and I feel better even after just a few weeks.
Dr. Gundry has a cookbook for the diet too. I’m going to take a look at it the next time I get to a bookstore. There are several recipes in the main Plant Paradox book to get started with and I’m hoping for some ideas from the cookbook for a little more variety, and maybe something my son will like too.
Find Out More about the Plant Paradox Diet
Check out the Plant Paradox book and see what you think. Dr. Gundry makes an excellent argument about why certain foods are not approved and what they do to you.
( Disclaimer: The links above are affiliate links. If you order the book through one of my links I may earn a small commission. It won’t affect the price you pay. )
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