The final report on whether or not healthy eating and increased exercise could make a significant impact on my cholesterol levels is in. After three weeks of eating a plant-based, whole food diet and making a concerted effort to exercise more, I went back to the Owatonna Clinic to get my blood checked. Less than three hours after the technician drew the blood from my arm the results were available. Yes, my three week eating and exercising experiment did have in impact on my cholesterol.
My total cholesterol dropped by almost 12 percent and my triglycerides dropped by over 28 percent. My total cholesterol is still slightly above what they say is healthy. So this experiment was not a slam dunk but a step in the right direction.
The good news for me is that I can keep my cholesterol at a safe level without having to take medication.
There was no “I feel so much better moment.” I did lose a little weight but it did seem like I had a slight drop in my energy level. The diet did improve some other health issues I had been having but did not have an effect on other ones.
One of the biggest challenges with a plant-based whole foods diet for me was the flavors. Food just doesn’t taste the same when meat is out of the picture. It definitely helped having another family member go on the diet with me, especially one who is a great cook and is always looking for new recipes to try.
Another big challenge is traveling and eating out. Hardly any restaurants in our area or the places we typically visit make much of an effort to cater to plant-based eaters.
It helped having a goal to look forward to and now that my goal has been reached I want to maintain what I have achieved. My plan is to stay the course for now. I think the longer I stay on this plan the easier it will be.