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by
Helen Smith

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August 3, 2011 - 9:48 am

I recently went to my gastroenterologist who seemed appalled when I told him I was eating bacon everyday. “You need some fruits and vegetables,” he stated. I assured him that I had tried that diet. It didn’t work for me. I ended up with a heart attack while I was a vegetarian and later found out I was allergic to a number of fruits and vegetables. Yes, I realize that fruits and vegetables do not cause heart attacks, but frankly, I sometimes wonder if they prevent them. They also make me sick and kill my stomach so forgive me if I can’t see the benefit of large amounts of them in my diet.

However, masochist that I am, I decided to read up on some healthier alternatives to bacon (are there any?). So I picked up the new book The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Plant-Based Nutrition off my shelf that a publicist had sent me and decided to see if I could find some compromise between no plant foods and a few. I’m glad I did.

The book is written by dietician Julieanna Hever who seems up-to date on most of her research about food. For example, there is a lot of controversy surrounding tofu and soy products and its link to cancer or possible interference with thyroid function. In a section called, “Is Soy Safe?” the author makes a case for how soy can be part of one’s diet. Eating it in moderation, avoiding processed soy products, and using only organic soy products are suggestions. Okay, at least she addresses it.

After reading about the joys of a plant-based diet from the book, I am re-thinking my boycott of almost all fruits and veggies and might give a few a try. But there is no way I am giving up my bacon.

Helen Smith is a psychologist specializing in forensic issues in Knoxville, Tennessee, and blogs at Dr. Helen.
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