the anti-cancer squad

Only plants produce phytochemicals, compounds that have been shown to help prevent the formation of potential cancer-causing substances (carcinogens) and block their action on target organs or tissue. Antioxidants, found abundantly in plants, help neutralize free-radical cellular damage and promote cell regeneration. The fountain of youth does indeed spring right from the Earth.

a delicate balance

Our bodies are designed to maintain a neutral pH balance. Whenever we ingest acid-forming foods, the body will immediately draw on its own alkaline reserves – including bone calcium – to neutralize the effect. This partly explains why higher dairy consumption has been associated with increased fracture risk. Again, Mother Nature knows best: a diet rich in whole, plant-based foods, unlike high acid-forming animal-based diets, creates an alkalizing effect in the body.

the heart of the matter

Animal-based foods, which contain saturated fat and cholesterol, are consistently linked to heart disease. Dr. Dean Ornish and his colleagues at the Preventive Medicine Research Institute in California have successfully reversed the progression of even severe coronary heart disease with comprehensive lifestyle changes including a low-fat, plant-based diet.

nature, nurture and nutrition

Animal products and processed foods are taxing on the digestive system and are relatively low in nutrient density. Migrant studies show that “diseases of affluence” such as cancer, heart disease and diabetes are closely tied to lifestyle factors, not genes. When Asian people migrate and adopt a western diet with a predominance of animal-based and refined foods, they start to exhibit the same obesity and disease patterns present in the west.

In what The New York Times called the “Grand Prix of Epidemiology”, Dr. T. Colin Campbell and fellow researchers found that people who ate the most animal-based foods got the most chronic disease, while those who ate the most plant-based foods were the healthiest and tended to avoid chronic disease. The China Study details Dr. Campbell’s extensive research.

a weighty factor

Clinical research studies have shown that adopting a low-fat, plant-based diet can help control blood-sugar levels, improve insulin sensitivity and facilitate weight loss – key factors in preventing and treating type 2 diabetes. Speaking of which, a key reason for today’s obesity crisis is not only the over-consumption of empty calories, rather the under-consumption of nutrient-dense foods. The body is constantly starved for the right nutrients, thus creating the need to eat more and more. When we consume nutrient-dense plant-based foods – especially those as close to their natural state as possible – the body is satisfied on much less and the excess weight stays off.