Saturday, July 30, 2016

Fat Free Vegan in July 2016 McDougall Newsletter

Congrats go to Susan Voisin of Fat Free Vegan for being the contributing recipe author for the July 2016 newsletter.

Don't forget to visit her blog, Fat Free Vegan Kitchen, too.

And her Facebook site.

She's been one busy gal!

Good Bye Alice, Petey, and Grandma's Giant Dog Shirley

I just found out that the writer and artist of the comic strip Cul De Sac, Richard Thompson, has succumbed to his Parkinson's Disease.

I've been a lover of comic books and newspaper comic strips for the great majority of my 62+ years and was looking at them long before I learned to read. Richard's The Complete Cul De Sac books were the first I bought in almost 20 years and will probably be the last ever. Another book that features, nay, praises, him and his drawings is The Art of Richard Thompson, put together by his friends not long after he got his diagnosis. That one showcases his other artwork, including newspaper editorial cartoons and his other comic about life in Washington, D.C. Richard's Poor Almanac.

Another very important book out there is Team Cul De Sac: Artists Draw the Line at Parkinson's. All proceeds go to the Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson's Research.

I was so much like Alice (and Ruthy from One Big Happy) while growing up, and my son, especially when it came to picky eating, could pass for her brother Petey. And while my grandmother never threw eggs at passing cars, she did have a big scary dog for the longest time. We grew up in an urban setting, not a suburban cul se sac like all of these kids, but kids will be kids in any setting.

We'll miss you, Richard, but you can't tie down a banjo man. When you have to go, you go in peace.

Thursday, July 28, 2016

So Which IS It, Penn Jillette??

At the beginning of the year, Penn Jillette showed off his recent 100-plus pound weight loss and attributed it to the Eat to Live program and talked about all the salads he lived on. He said it here, and here, and Dr. Fuhrman said it here, too. He claimed Mr. Cronise introduced him to the Nutritarian diet.

Now his new book, 
Presto! How I Made Over 100 Pounds Disappear and Other Magical Tales", is about to come out and he credits Ray Conise for the starch based food plan he followed and tells tales about living off of only potatoes for only 2 weeks and how he continued to lose by eating them.

Um, so which is it? Did you lose 120 pounds on Fuhrman's program eating salad or Cronise's by eating starches. There is a big difference.

But how is he keeping his weight off? According to this article:

"These days, he subsists on just one meal a day: often a giant salad eaten at 5 p.m., plus enormous quantities of fruit."

So much for those potatoes.

If this is what it takes for a big guy like him to keep his weight off, what hope does a post-menopausal, hypothyroid, short and squat female have? Is that what it's going to take?

Wednesday, July 27, 2016

So Sad! Spuds No More!

This is me, after realizing I'm developing an allergy or some other adverse reaction to potatoes:

For the past few months we've been eating the super simple McDougall way. On weekends I would make soup for our dinners; Mondays and Thursdays would be rice and veg meals; Tuesdays and Fridays would be potato meals; and Wednesdays were sweet potato meals.

Once in a while I would cook up one of those mesh bags of tiny Gold potatoes and eat them with a veg and either ketchup, gravy, or a nutritional yeast-based cheese sauce for lunch. I even got my son in the habit of eating these delicious little gems.

But the past few weeks I noticed some weird things happening. While eating those tiny taters, or soon after, my throat would get this strange itchy and swollen feeling and my sinuses would get inflamed, and they would stay like that until I woke up the next morning. 

I was also eating russets at dinners once or twice a week but nothing happened after eating those, so I "knew" it wasn't potatoes themselves in general. Ha!

The first time it happened I assumed it was the sneezing spell I had during lunch and thought nothing of it. The second time there was no sneezing but the same thing happened. The third time I only ate 4 leftover tiny taters and by the third one the throat thing started so I stopped eating them. An allergic reaction to something that was sprayed on them, either in the field or the warehouse or stores? Or something in the potatoes themselves?

Now came the experimentation. I tried russets, whites, red, and yellow/Yukon Golds, in both conventional and organic versions. I also varied where I bought them, in case it was something happening in one store and not the others. At first the russets were fine, but then I started to react to those, too. Same thing was happening no matter which variety of potato I ate or where it came from. In fact, near the end of my trials the feeling was starting after the first few bites. 

What turned out to be my last day of experimentation really worried me. I saved testing the russets for last, because I had previously eaten them with no problems, even while reacting to the Yukon Golds. I guess something inside of me changed, because now I was getting the same reaction - the swollen sinuses, itchy and now swelling throat - after just 2 bites. I immediately spit out what was in my mouth.

For the next hour I hung around the house fully dressed, purse packed, ready to go to the ER if things got worse to get a shot of epinephrine if needed. My husband was ready to call 911 if things progressed too fast. Luckily the swelling started to subside a few hours afterwards and he and I started to relax.

So no more potatoes for me. My son already said he would finish up the few we still have in the house, especially now that he got into the habit.

But I don't dare eat another potato.

Hence the sobbing.

Now I don't know whether I should avoid all nightshades vegetables, too, like peppers and tomatoes. We eat the three of those foods at least daily, many times 2 or 3 times a day. I'd really go crazy if I can no longer have tomatoes, too!

Darn this auto-immune disease! I never know what's going to happen next!

Monday, July 25, 2016

An Evening with the Esselstyn's Video

Plant Based Nutrition Support Group (of Michigan?) meeting. Dr. Esselstyn is introduced at around 33 minutes, Ann and Jane start their talk and cooking demo - and exercise break with a song! - at 1:38.

Saturday, July 23, 2016

New Contest by Jill McKeever

Still don't have an Instant Pot or a copy of Jill's book, OMGee Good! Instant Pot Meals?

Lucky for you, Jill McKeever is currently running a contest with these items as the prizes in honor of hitting 17,000 subscribers.

Limited to residents of the USA and Canada only, she says, due to shipping costs.

It's a nice trivia contest and all the answers are in her previous YouTube videos. She even tells you which videos the answers are in, so it's super simple. She didn't say how many winners there will be, though. Winners will be announced Saturday July 30th.

Good luck, everyone.

And, "Woot! Woot!"

Jersey Rules!

"I suggest you not underestimate the staggering drawing power of the Garden State." - Dogma, 1999

Friday, July 22, 2016

Dr. McDougall Webinar: Stop the Insanity!

GASP! Cough, Cough!

A good stay to stay indoors with the air-conditioner and cook only with the Instant Pot or microwave. I was outside for less than 5 minutes bringing the garbage cans in and not only was I drenched but wheezing when I got back in. Inhaler to the rescue!

The McDougall MS Study Results Published

Low-fat, plant-based diet in multiple sclerosis: A randomized controlled trial

You can read the entire study at the above link. 


While a very-low fat, plant-based diet was well adhered to and tolerated, it resulted in no significant improvement on brain MRI, relapse rate or disability as assessed by EDSS scores in subjects with RRMS over one year. The diet group however showed significant improvements in measures of fatigue, BMI and metabolic biomarkers. The study was powered to detect only very large effects on MRI activity so smaller but clinically meaningful effects cannot be excluded. The diet intervention resulted in a beneficial effect on the self-reported outcome of fatigue but these results should be interpreted cautiously as a wait-list control group may not completely control for a placebo effect and there was a baseline imbalance on fatigue scores between the groups. If maintained, the improved lipid profile and BMI could yield long-term vascular health benefits. Longer studies with larger sample sizes are needed to better understand the long-term health benefits of this diet.

Saturday, July 16, 2016

Snack Hacks from the Nelson Twins

Just ignore #5 Smoothies, and you've got a bunch of great McDougall-safe snack ideas. Nothing complex or difficult to make, only a handful of ingredients each. Some are even MWLP safe!

If you just have to have a snack, try one of these!

Friday, July 15, 2016


The movie that started my love of computers: TRON . 

Click that link to see a video from Disney with some history on the movie that changed the world of computer animation.

Dr. Lisle Q&A

Dr. Lisle doesn't appear until 5 minutes in, so hang on.

For more on the subject of this talk (Getting Along Without Going Along), see this page on Dr. Lisle's site to see him give the more formal version of the lecture at a McDougall 10 Day program way back in 2004.

Thursday, July 14, 2016

Healthiest Foods with Jeff Novick - Part 2

Jeff Novick's monthly video for EHE is up, and this month it's Part 2 of his 10 Healthiest Foods list.

Remember, these videos only stay up for a week, so be sure to grab it by Tuesday July 19th.

Now, if you're reading this late, you can find the same list on his website.

Wednesday, July 13, 2016

Leftovers Lunch

This way of eating is just so simple.

Trying to clear the fridge out a bit I made the following meal for lunch today using nothing but leftovers:

The base is dry-fried sliced Japanese sweet potato (purple skin, white inside), each slice topped with a dollop of pizza hummus, then a blob of cooked spinach. On the side is also dry-fried leftover baby carrots, and some cold cut up beets and another plop of hummus for dunking.


Wednesday, July 6, 2016

Monday, July 4, 2016

Register for Mary McDougall Webinar

Thursday, July 7, 2016 at 11 a.m. PST
Title: Live Webinar with Dr. McDougall and Mary McDougall
Description: Mary McDougall talks about making easy meals, stocking your pantry, cookware, Mary’s Mini and more!
Presenter: Dr. McDougall and Mary McDougall
Host: Moderator, Gustavo Tolosa, DMA

Friday, July 1, 2016

Another Webinar - Instant Answers From Dr. McDougall

Starts out talking about the Alaskan cruise, the foods available ("eco-friendly"), and then the video stopped.

"Video was interrupted. The streamer stopped streaming."

Now we all sit and wait to see if they can get reconnected. Gustavo has us all try reconnecting, but that doesn't do it. It's on their end, not ours. People are joking it's big pharma or the meat and dairy industry sabotaging Dr. McDougall.

Gustavo just told us all to try back in 5 minutes, and if that doesn't help it'll be postponed for another week. It's happened before and will most likely happen again. It's the nature of the Internet to mess up.

At 20 after the hour it disconnected and the message pops on the screen that the webinar hasn't started yet. Ah! There it is! Gustavo makes sure we can all see and hear and we wait for Dr. McD to return.

Now it's finally starting, at 23 minutes after the hour. Gustavo wanted to do an abridged version, but Dr. McDougall insists on starting from the beginning again. The replay will be edited to start at this point instead of where we started almost a half hour ago. This time, instead of the grand-children and the bear story he's going on and on about the environment, global warming, and meat eaters ruining the planet, the topic of the June 2016 newsletter. Now Dr. McD is trying to show us something on his computer but he can't get it to work.

New book is dedicated to his grandchildren. Release date September 28, 2016. Pre-order now.

Says he spoke to interns and residents but was disappointed at their reaction (neutral, at best). Wants to speak with them again to try get through to them about the importance of preventative medicine.

Here comes the bear story. Let's see if we hear the end of it this time. National Geographic guides to the rescue in the original version, kind of dropped here.

Finally, the topic of the webinar - Instant Answers From Dr. McDougall. All about how to use the  official McDougall web site. He sounds like he's getting tired of people asking the same questions over and over again and they're already answered on his web site and encourages people to use the search and the discussion boards; where to sign up for the newsletters, and other features.

Conversation rolls around to the food guidelines again before coming back to the McDougall Message Board and how sometimes people get mean and obnoxious. But praise goes out to James Brown (f1jim), the moderator, and the great job he does keeping the peace. Yay, Jim!

Off to explore other parts of the web site, including Dr. McDougall's story in the About Us section. Next comes the MS study and the donation page. He needs $6 million to continue. Gustavo points out the recipe sections, including printable recipe cards.

At the end Gustavo finally gets to ask questions submitted by others. A dietitian asking about how to handle diabetic dietary instructions when docs at her hospital all insist on high protein/fat. Long answer. It's now an hour and 20 minutes since the webinar started and he's still working on it.

90 minutes and finally wrapping up. Talking about bringing Mary back for a talk (against her wishes). Yay, Mary! Let's see what happens. Dr. McD made it sound as if it would be more of a punishment for her than joy.

Ah, I see Gustavo changed the title of this to Dr. McDougall's Free Website Benefits.

I Want Me One of THESE!