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on January 11, 2000
This will be a short review. Simply put, this book laid the foundation seven years ago for my vegetarianism. I have found few if any sources in academic libraries to dispute McDougall's views on diet and health. I was 23 when I began using this book as the basis for my diet and recipes. Today, in 2000, I enjoy these recipes regularly (I do add some salt back, and take a cue from Andrew Weil's "Spontaneous Healing" with regard to olive oil) and review this information from time to time to gauge my progress. While so many of my contemporaries are swelling like ticks from their childhood diets, my one adult decision to become vegetarian has resulted in a slim body, constant comments from my friends about my youthful appearance, and a cleaner planet due to all the cows and pigs and chickens I did not consume. I cannot say that this book changed my life; my decision to change gave the consequence of searching for such a book. I believe anyone with the will to become a new person will find much inspiration and practical advice in "The McDougall Program." I'm ordering it for my mom today.
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on August 13, 2005
Last year I met Dr. Ruth Heidrich, an extraordinary athlete, author and breast cancer survivor on a week long cruise I went on to the Caribbean. She was a speaker for this special "vegetarian cruise" and was part of the reason I signed on. Long before the cruise I had read about her battle with the disease and had even corresponded with her about some health issues that she was very helpful with. Meeting her in the flesh was life changing. She is 70 years old, a pillar of health with a magnetic presence. Her words changed everything for me and introduced me to the world of Dr. John McDougall, the person she gives credit to for saving her life over twenty years ago from the cancer. After the cruise I bought this book, a set of pots and pans and began cooking the recipes from the book (much to the delight of my fiance!) A few short weeks later my cholesteral was down to 144 from 236. Ever since I have enthusiastically passed out several copies to friends and acquaintances with various health issues and have witnessed dramatic, life-altering results. Huge weight losses, drops in cholesteral, meds being discontinued (blood pressure, etc.). McDougall has taught me to take charge of my own health. My personal physician told me not to worry about my previous high cholesteral - something I found ironic with the long history of health problems on both sides of my family. With this book I was able to help myself and I continue to help others everytime I pass it on. This is a must read! Buy several copies to have on hand for your loved ones.
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on May 27, 1999
This is an excellent book, well-written, concise and with humor for anyone who wants to improve their health through diet. It provides a brief history of the "hows and whys" of Dr. McDougall's journey towards a vegan diet. The history is followed by a "how to get started plan", a 12 day suggested meal plan, easy to make and tasty recipes and lists of products by name brands that fit the diet. Finally, Dr. McDougall has included a general index as well as a recipe index which makes it easy to look up specific problems or recipes for favorite foods. This book is written in plain and simple English, but is thoroughly documented with pages and pages of scientific references. All in all, I would highly recommend this book, with the caveat that once you get on this diet, you will feel so great, you will not be able to (nor want to) go back to your old eating habits.
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on June 4, 1999
I bought the book and started the eating program on 1 April 1999. I found the recipes, shopping guide and principles set forth in the book to be just what I needed to change my terrible eating habits. I stuck strictly to the program for 60 days and went from 183 pounds to 165 and never felt like I was actually on a diet. In fact, I'm still following the program, using recipes from the two Support volumes written by Mrs. McDougall. I never would have been able to adhere to this program if it weren't for the nutritious and filling meals layed out in the book. My wife also follows the program and we both feel better than we have in years. I am anxious to order and try the two latest recipe books I hear are on the shelves now. Frankly, I was intimidated by the idea of giving up meat, coffee and processed foods; but I am now a true believer in this program and cannot see myself returning to the unhealthy eating style I practiced before I came upon the McDougall program. This book lays it all out for you and explains how to simplify your shopping and meal planning. My two-month old copy is becoming dogeared from daily use. It was the best investment I have made in a long time.
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on January 19, 2004
I have to admit that I was unsure and a bit afraid to start this program. I did not think I would be able to follow it. I am so glad I gave it a try. I can't think of anything that has been BETTER for me. I feel SOOO much better I have lost 26 lbs so far and my energy is great. My husband even loves the food and his cholesterol has dropped considerably. Thank you Dr. Mcdougall !!! You are the BEST !!!
UPDATE: I am down 36 lbs now and still going strong.
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on May 1, 2003
Prior to going on Dr. McDougall's diet I had been a lacto-ovo vegetarian for 23 years. When I became a vegetarian long ago I hoped it would help me stay healthier. Then decades later my colesterol was good (166) but I was over 100 lbs overweight and boarderline hypertensive. I noticed at vegetarian get togethers that there were plenty of overweight vegetarians but I don't remember ever seeing obese vegans. You'd think that after 23 years as a lacto-ovo vegetarian going vegan wouldn't be that hard but truth is that I needed some help to get started. This book helped me over that hurdle.
I've been on the diet for a month now. I've lost about 16 lbs. I'm still on blood pressure medication which I'm a little bummed about because Dr. McDougal says that after a short while on his program that your BP will come down. Perhaps after I loose more weight it will but so far I'm still taking BP pills. This is a diet I feel I could stay on for the rest of my life but after I get my weight down I do plan on adding some more fat in the form of avocados, nuts, and a little oil used when cooking. One of the problems with his diet is that with so low fat the food doesn't "stick to your ribs" for long. I feel pretty satesfied after a meal but an hour and a half later I'm hungry again. If I don't have snacks with me I'm starving by the next meal time. I do think that a diet can be too low fat and this one probably is.
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on March 20, 2007
I purchased this book after visiting Dr. McDougall's web site. Actually, almost all of the information in this book can be found at his web site, so if you are looking for new recipes or other information not posted on his site, this is not the book for you. You might want to buy something else, a newer book or DVD. This book outlines his recommended diet and lifestyle for optimal health including the rationale for avoiding certain foods and including others - basically avoiding all animal products and lowering fat intake. There is a 12-day diet plan included as well as various recipes and information on a number of health problems that can be helped by healthy eating. Overall, very interesting reading and a good start for anyone wanting to follow a low-fat vegan diet.
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on October 14, 2003
I have been on the plan since September 16th, interuppted by a few holidays (the program does allow for feasts periodically), and my cholesterol is down from 210 to 167.
The reviewer from Marietta, Georgia complains about this, saying it is only for people who want to loose weight. She is wrong, this book is a diety to heal people. While a regular vegan diet may be fine for healthy people, if they eat moderate amounts of fats, those with health issues such as heart disease need the ultra low fat program McDougall is teaching in this book. She seems to forget that Dr. McDougall is an MD with a great deal of experience in healing people with diet related illness. While the book she recomends "Becoming Vegan" is good, the authors do not deal with healing of diseases.
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McDougall tells it like it is. If you want the scientific FACTS about health and nutrition, this is it. If you want a Watered down version that will make you more "comfortable" (but WILL kill you), then go to your doctor or the ADA. If you have a chronic illness, it can probably be reversed through lifestyle changes. But since healing you is inexpensive and simple, there is no profit motive for anybody so prevention and healing is not really promoted.
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on June 5, 1999
Dr. McDougall and this book has changed our lives forever. His plan for a low-fat vegan lifestyle is explained thoroughly with Dr. McDougall's casual, easily understandable style and leaves the reader with little question about the benefits of the McDougall Program. Detailed explanation, case studies, menu plans and descriptions of common ailments combine to give the reader an in depth understanding of how diet effects our health, and how eating a low-fat, vegan diet can put an end to many ailments. We have lost weight, gained control over digestive problems and allergies by following the McDougall Program. If you want endless energy, good health, and to eat as much as you like and still lose weight (seriously!!) - join the thousands of people who have discovered that Dr. McDougall has found a way to break free from destructive eating habits and the illness that results.
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