• Why take time to thoroughly study Eat to Live and Eat for Health?
  • Why read Dr. Fuhrman’s newsletters?
  • Why listen to his teleconferences?
  • Why ask Dr. Fuhrman medical or weight loss questions when they arise?
  • Why post struggles/victories and receive encouragement from others?
  • Why seek extra help through the withdrawal phase?
  • Why persevere through the toxic cravings?
  • Why learn true hunger signals?
  • Why get up and keep going when a slip-up happens?
  • Why stock a cooler with high nutrient foods when away from home?
  • Why learn to make delicious bean soups, smoothies and homemade ice-creams?
  • Why go to the gym in January when it’s below zero and dark outside?
  • Why ask family and friends for their support?
  • Why eat differently than 99.9% of the rest of the population?
  • Why put forth the effort to earn health back?
  • Why even bother when one can take meds for just about anything?

Sleeping Bear Dunes, one of the largest sand dunes in the world; located on the northwestern shore of Lake Michigan. Many from the Midwest make their annual trek up its steep slopes to see the breathtaking views from the various summits. I’m no exception. It’s become a part of my summer tradition since childhood. 

However, as food addiction and resulting malnutrition took over, I felt like the ‘real’ me became trapped in a body that I no longer recognized. I became a stranger to myself and climbing the dunes was a thing of the past. I became a lawn chair spectator of others from the distant island of captivity. Obesity and poor health robbed me of so much, and truly, only in hindsight, do I now realize how much I missed for twenty years of my life and my family’s life. Unfortunately, the food addict and his/her family adjust to the many handicaps of poor health, and both parties become accustomed to the negative changes. 

female on sand duneLast week, not only did I make the 3.5 hour round-trip hike up and down sandy dunes out to Lake Michigan and back, but it was exhilarating and I did it with much ease!  [The picture on the left was taken at the bottom of the final descent.]  I was finally a participant in my family’s life at Sleeping Bear, and someday I hope to be an active participant in my future grandchildren’s life also, if/when that time comes.  I refuse to be found sitting on a lawn chair by myself at the parking lot . . . . .

  • testing blood sugars and adjusting food and/or medications accordingly
  • out-of-breath due to physical exertion
  • fatigued from sleep apnea and the non-stop burden of carrying around excess weight
  • nursing achy joints, feet, and chronic back pain
  • experiencing muscle weakness from heart meds
  • living in constant fear of an impending heart attack
  • depressed and feeling hopeless due to all of the above


So why do the things that have successfully proven to get many out of food addiction and restore health? 

As I was leaping down the final descent, a Dad and Mom with four children were attempting to climb up. Both parents were morbidly obese and the late morning sun was starting to pelt down on them. They looked exhausted and their energetic children were ready to explore the great outdoors. It was in that moment that I realized once again, the reason why I’m committed to doing those things that Dr. Fuhrman recommends to live in optimal health!        

Tell us your reasons for choosing optimal health



image credits: personal.umich.edu; tripadvisor.co.uk

Trackbacks (0) Links to blogs that reference this article Trackback URL
Comments (12) Read through and enter the discussion with the form at the end
Kevin - June 29, 2010 12:43 PM

- Because I feel more energetic when I feed myself high-nutrient foods!
- Because I always break out with acne a few days after eating foods high in refined sugar!
- Because I remember the terrible overfull and lifeless feelings I got after bingeing on chocolate bars :(
- Because ever since I started eating healthy, I can taste new tastes and appreciate food more!

Greg - June 29, 2010 1:38 PM

Not to nitpick, but we got a good giggle out of the "largest dunes in the world". Maybe you meant largest in North America, or some of the largest.

Good post though!

shels - June 29, 2010 7:48 PM

I am struggling with choosing optimal health. I have read Dr. Fuhrman's books, I understand the ideas, but putting into practice seems impossible. I have a major addiction to PEPSI that I just can't shake. I go to bed at night telling myself I will do better in the morning and at lunch time I find myself leaving on my break to go buy an ice cold fountain Pepsi, then on the way home, I find myself stopping, yet again, for the same thing. It is so frustrating. I am in a rut and can't seem to get out.

us - June 29, 2010 8:25 PM

Did anyone see the breaking headlines on the evening news that America is getting fatter and that the weight of 28 states have increased. Folks, this is a national obesity epidemic and the problem is only getting worse. It seems the more money that is spent on dieting the fatter people get.

Horsecrazy - June 29, 2010 8:45 PM

Because at the age of 61 I want to maintain a healthy body.

I don't want to end up in a nursing home when I am old!

I want to get the most enjoyment from life that I possibly can!

I love seeing the look on peoples faces when I tell them how old I am and they say "no way"!! :)

Molly - June 30, 2010 12:18 AM

• to escape the grip of junk foods
• to save my health, today and in the future
• to give myself a new lease on life
• my choices also include veganism for the sake of animal welfare
• I didn't know it then, but choosing this way of life has given me more than I ever thought possible!

Zach - June 30, 2010 8:42 AM

I can't believe that's Lake Michigan! That's certainly NOT what I thought it was when I saw the picture. I was thinking Tahiti or Bora Bora.

Ginger - June 30, 2010 11:32 AM

Because I don't want to simply exist; I want to LIVE!

Kristi - June 30, 2010 11:45 AM


I had an addiction to diet soda, 52 oz. per day at least. Someone suggested to me that my addiction was not only the soda but also that it was a ritual that I performed every day to make myself feel "safe."

I have been soda free since 4/15/10 using the "tapping technique" for cravings (google it)and mediation for a healthy ritual I perform everyday to feel grounded and safe.

Cindy - June 30, 2010 3:09 PM

Why? To maintain health, set a good example to others, but mostly . . . because I hate being fat!!! It's vanity, true, but I'm being honest. Thanks, Emily!

Emily Boller - June 30, 2010 8:21 PM

shels -

Accountability is so important. Do you have those in your life who you can share your struggles with and they can hold you accountable; at least thru the cravings/withdrawal phase? You need others to help you overcome the pull back to Pepsi.

It's going to take focus and commitment; and there are no shortcuts, but many, many, many have overcome, and you can also!

Complete freedom from Pepsi addiction is for you - go after it!

Cheering for you ~ cheering for everyone to freedom!


shels - July 1, 2010 12:12 AM

Kristi, Thank you so much for your kindness for responding to my comment. The tapping technique sounds a bit confusing and also having to hum Happy Birthday outloud and counting out loud may be a bit inappropriate at work. Just curious how you made it work for yourself? Thank you so much again for taking the time to respond to me, I greatly appreciate your considerate input.

Post A Comment / Question Use this form to add a comment to this entry.

Remember personal info?