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Food Choices and Your Health

There is overwhelming scientific evidence that what we eat has a profound influence on our well-being. The medical community is in agreement: for optimal health, they recommend diets rich in whole grains, fruits, vegetables and legumes, and low in fat, especially animal fat. Despite this, millions of North Americans continue to eat in ways that severely compromise their health.

Consider these realities

Health & Nutrition


Diet and Disease

Disease Health Care Costs Americans with Disease Rate in Vegetarians
Heart $40.4 billion 6.2 million 50-75% lower
High blood pressure $12.5 billion 63 million 33-50% lower
Cancer $35.5 billion 1.2 million 25-50% lower
Diabetes $39.0 billion 7.3 million 90% lower
Gall Bladder surgery $3.2 billion 0.5 million 75% lower



The Good News About Cholesterol

Nutrition Education

Food Safety

Protein Requirements

Animal Protein

The Good News About Vegetable Protein

Percentage of Calories as Protein


Tofu 43%

Lentils 29%

Split peas 28%

Kidney beans 26%

Navy beans 26%

Chick peas 23%


Rye 20%

Wheat 17%

Oatmeal 16%

Buckwheat 15%

Barley 11%

Brown Rice 8%

Nuts & Seeds

Peanuts 18%

Sunflower 17%

Walnuts 13%

Almonds 12%


Lemon 16%

Cantaloupe 9%

Orange 8%

Grape 8%

Peach 6%

Pear 5%

Banana 5%


Spinach 49%

Broccoli 47%

Cauliflower 40%

Mushrooms 38%

Parsley 34%

Lettuce 34%

Green peas 30%

Zucchini 28%

Green beans 26%

Cucumbers 24%

Celery 21%

Tomatoes 18%

Onions 16%

Potatoes 11%

Source: USDA [32]

The Good News About Plant-Based Diets

Arthritis Diverticulosis Osteoporosis Obesity
Diabetes Impotence Kidney Disease Strokes
Hypoglycemia Prostate Cancer Salmonellosis Constipation
Peptic Ulcers Breast Cancer Colon Cancer High Blood Pressure
Asthma Gallstones Heart Disease Trichinosis


[1] The Surgeon General’s Report on Nutrition and Health, Pub. #88-50210, Washington, DC: US Dept. of Health and Human Services, 1988.

[2] President’s Council on Physical Fitness and Sports, as cited in Madu Dillingham, "Off the Scales," E Magazine, July/Aug 1995.

[3] Ibid.

[4] "Kids’ weight has ballooned since 1980, US survey says," Washington Post, Oct 3, 1995.

[5] Environmental Nutrition, Sep 1995.

[6] Attwood, Charles, MD, Dr. Attwood’s Low-Fat Prescription for Kids, Viking, New York, 1995, p. 48.

[7] Roy Walford, Maximum Life Span, New York: Norton, 1983, 8.

[8] Peggy Eastman, "Healthier Habits, Science Curbing Heart Disease," AARP Bulletin, Sep 1995.

[9] National Institutes of Health, National Cancer Institute, Annual Cancer Statistics Review, 1989.

[10] Preventive Medicine,1995, 24, p. 646-655; Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine, "Recommended Revisions for Dietary Guidelines for Americans," January 31, 1995.

[11] Jean Pennington, Food Values, 15th edition, Perennial Library Press, 1989.

[12] MJ Martin et al, "Serum cholesterol, blood pressure, and mortality, implications from a cohort of 361, 662 men," Lancet 1986; 2:933-6.

[13] S. Moncada, JF Martin, A. Higgs, Symposium on regression of atherosclerosis, European Journal of Clinical Investigation 1993; 23:385-98.

[14] Charles Attwood, op. cit. p. 156.

[15] Phillip Kapleau, To Cherish All Life, Harper and Row, San Francisco, 1981, p. 59.

[16] McDougall, The McDougall Plan, op. cit. p. 7.

[17] Fact Sheet from Lois Joy Galler Foundation, Melville, NY 1995.

[18] Susan Meeker-Lowry, "Challenging the Meat Monopoly," Z Magazine, March 1, 1995.

[19] Centers for Disease Control cited in "Is our Fish Fit to Eat?", Consumer Reports, Feb. 1992.

[20] Preventive Medicine, 1995, 24 p. 646-655.

[21] Food and Nutrition Board, Vegetarian Diets, National Academy of Sciences, Washington, DC, 1974, p. 2.

[22] G. Bell, Textbook of Physiology and Biochemistry, 4th ed. Williams and Wilkins, Balentine, 1954, p. 167-170.

[23] "Protein Requirements," Food and Agriculture Organization, World Health Organization Expert Group, United Nations Conference, Rome, 1965: C. Pfeiffer, Mental and Elemental Nutrients, New Canaan, CT: Keats, 1975.

[24] National Research Council, Recommended Dietary Allowances, 9th ed., Washington, DC, National Academy of Sciences, 1989.

[25] L. Allen, "Protein-induced Hypercalcuria: A Longer-term Study." American Journal of Clinical Nutrition,1979, 32:741; J. Brockis, "The Effects of Vegetable and Animal Proteins on Calcium, Urate, and Oxalate Excretion." BR J. Urology, 1982) 54:590; V. Barzel, Osteoporosis (New York: Grune and Stratton. 1970.

[26] B. Brenner, "Dietary Protein Intake and the Progressive Nature of Kidney Disease: The Role of Hemodynamically Mediated Glomerular Injury in the Pathogenesis of Progressive Glomerular Sclerosis in Aging, Renal Ablation and Intrinsic Renal Disease." New England Journal of Medicine,1980. 307:652; G. Maschio, "Effects of Dietary Protein and Phosphorus Restriction on the Progression of Early Renal Failure." Kidney Int., 1982, 22:371.

[27] Same as note 16.

[28] Same as note 17.

[29] Same as note 15.

[30] Ibid.

[31] Lappe, Frances Moore, Diet for a Small Planet, tenth anniversary edition, Ballantine Books, New York, 1982. 17, 162.

[32] For complete documentation, refer to: John McDougall, MD and Mary A. McDougall, The McDougall Plan (Piscataway, NJ: New Century, 1983); John McDougall, MD, McDougall’s Medicine, A Challenging Second Opinion (Clinton, NJ: New Win Publishing, 1985), 75; John Robbins, Diet for a New America, Walpole, NH: Stillpoint, 1987.

[33] For complete documentation, refer to: John Robbins, Diet for a New America, Walpole, NH: Stillpoint, 1987; John McDougall, MD and Mary A. McDougall, The McDougall Plan (Piscataway, NJ: New Century, 1983); John McDougall, MD, McDougall’s Medicine, A Challenging Second Opinion (Clinton, NJ: New Win Publishing, 1985), 75.

[34] Journal of National Cancer Institute, 1995, 87, p. 110-116.

[35] T. Colin Campbell, Nutrition Advocate 1995.

[36] Neuroepidemiology, 1993, 12, p. 28-36.

[37] Maggie Jackson, "Americans Flirt with Meatless Eating," Associated Press Business Extra, Aug. 8, 1995.

[38] British Medical Journal, v. 308 p. 1667-71, 1994.