There are so many diets out there it can easily become overwhelming. Sometimes my patients mention new diets to me that I have never even heard off. New ones just keep popping up. I’ve often toyed with the idea of creating my own diet. But what would I call it? The DKD (Dr Kathy Diet), kind of catchy. But seriously, there really isn’t a need for a new diet because the evidence is overwhelming for the absolute best diet to promote health. Any guesses? The Mediterranean diet is a popular one with fairly good evidence to support long lasting health. The emphasis is often drawn to its fish and olive oil component when actually what makes that diet so healthy is its strong emphasis on whole foods, fruits and vegetables. It also strongly encourages enjoying meals in a positive social setting with family and friends. Something that’s missing in our fast paced society.
The whole food plant based diet (WFPB) is the best diet for health. The WFPB diet has astonishing data for preventing and reversing chronic illnesses like heart disease and diabetes. What about the Paleo and Keto diet? I have had patients see good short term results on these diets but the long term data for maintaining wellness is not available. There is tons of research evidence available and mounting for a WFPB diet. Evidence that this diet is ideal for health in the short and long term. So if you start today you have a higher chance of staying healthy for decades to come. A higher chance of avoiding cancer, heart attack, stroke and diabetes.
What’s even more fascinating is that this type of eating not only helps heart disease, hypertension and diabetes but it also is effective in helping arthritis, acne, obesity, depression, irritable bowel disease and a whole lot more.
When you review the evidence it makes sense that this dietary recommendation should be the standard of care in our medical profession. The healing effects are greater than any one pill and the side effect profile are all pleasant ones (weight loss, clear skin, sharpened thinking, increase energy… not bad huh).
What can you eat on a WFBP diet.. a whole lot really. All vegetables, fruits, nuts, seeds, grains, beans and peas. The combinations and mixtures of these foods are endless. When you eat these foods in an unprocessed form you will find yourself full for longer and shedding those extra pounds.
Give it a try. Take it one meal at a time. Remember that change isn’t easy but this one may just be the healthiest decision of your life.
Healthy Plant based diets are associated with lower risk of all-cause mortality in US Adults. Hyunju Kim et al. The Journal of Nutrition, Volume 148, Issue 4, 1. April 2018, Pages 624-631
Health and nutrition aspects of sustainable diet strategies and there association with environmental impacts: a global modeling analysis with country-level detail. Lancet 2018