'The Power of Habit' - How to Make Lif... - Cholesterol Support

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'The Power of Habit' - How to Make Life-Saving Changes in your Diet and Lifestyle


March 5, 2015 - after an angiogram to assess the condition of my coronary arteries following a hospital admission 6 days earlier, the cardiologist came to my bedside and said - 'you have 2 arteries that are 95% blocked and one other artery containing 4 blockages' - stenting is too high-risk - you may die on the table - you are a ticking time bomb, your best option is a triple bypass'.

With that, my health odyssey began, from near death to near-perfect health.

Since that day, I had a triple bypass, which ultimately failed and required the high-risk stenting procedure they were trying to avoid.

After 9 months on a cocktail of drugs, including statins, I had so many bad side-effects that I swore to get off of all of them. After extensive reading on how to naturally reduce cholesterol, I decided to become a pesco-lacto-vegetarian and to start exercising more vigorously.

I had read a book called 'The Power of Habit' - charlesduhigg.com/the-power... just before my hospitalization - which convinced me that I could change the lifetime of deleterious dietary and lifestyle habits that eventually caught up with me.

I encourage everyone who is trying to overcome their cardiovascular and cholesterol issues, among other things, and who would like to get on the road to optimal health, to watch the video in the link and read the book.

In October 2016, 10 months after making the commitment to change - I took my last prescription medication and had achieved my optimal weight - 155 lbs.

From 195 lbs, clogged arteries, a poorly functioning heart, lethargy and fatigue as well as risky blood metrics, including high LDL cholesterol, I have modified my diet and lifestyle to the point where I no longer take ANY prescription medications, have lost all of my excess weight (40 lbs), and have obtained near-perfect blood metrics and virtually conquered my cardiovascular disease. Today I play ice-hockey once per week and skate as fast as those half my age - I perform HIIT (high intensity interval training) on a treadmill 3 days per week and resistance training 3 days per week. I walk 15,000 steps per day.

I have modified my diet and have re-introduced animal protein (usually lean chicken breast) for 2 meals per week.

Good health, OPTIMAL health, is a choice - everyone has the power within them to make positive changes. You just need to know 'how'.

First, read the book I recommended. While doing so, start making small incremental changes to your diet and lifestyle once per week. Hold yourself accountable by measuring your daily activity through a device such as a Fitbit, and get a blood test quarterly to measure the impact of your dietary changes.

You can learn what I do daily by reading one of my previous posts:


Start today - get off of sugar, and walk for 30 minutes as a starting point.

Good luck to all.

14 Replies

Magnificent - permission to repost?

sos007Ambassador in reply to Paul12

Thank you. Yes, please do so - I wish to help as many people as possible.

I think people here may well like this: ny30dayhabits.blogspot.co.uk/

Well done, I know you will keep up the good work. Did you also study Drs Esselstyn and Ornish. As you know from previous blogs I have been on the WFPB way of eating for over two years.

sos007Ambassador in reply to Whatagame77

Thank you. I have studied pretty much everything under the sun - I immersed myself into cardiovascular disease during my journey. What I have learned is that nothing can be proven definitively in terms of dietary, pharmaceutical or nutraceutical intervention.

There's a lot of trial and error, but the good thing is, the error is much less harmful with nutraceutical interventions than pharmaceutical.

In terms of diet, I think Esselstyn and Ornish are too extreme with the 'no oil' credo - yes I know they cite studies that 'prove' oil damages the endothelium but my personal experience proves otherwise. Any dietary and lifestyle regimen has to be both palatable and sustainable. I eat olives and olive oil daily as well as nuts. If you viewed my referenced post about my December blood test you will see that my HDL values are extremely good. Furthermore, I conduct regular endothelium function testing and my endothelium has been steadily improving.

If you have read the 'Blue Zones' book which documents 7 societies around the world with exceptional longevity, you will find that their diet does not restrict anything - but can be categorized as WFPB. This is effectively the Mediterranean Diet, which still permits animal protein but in much lower quantity and frequency than what we have become accustomed to in Western society.

Whereas I once craved red meat and sugary treats, I no longer feel deprived of them. I actually enjoy the WFPB diet with the light sprinkling of fish and lean chicken a few days per week. I especially enjoy legumes - as a native Greek, I grew up with beans, chick pea and lentil dishes - its all about the recipe in terms of enjoying these foods. Mediterranean cultures know how to cook these foods with much flavour.


One warning - avoid sugar, honey or other sweeteners in your daily diet as well as fried foods (oxidized oil damages your endothelium).

We have also found some other vegetarian recipes that are great here:


Good luck and thanks again for your comments.

Luckysugar in reply to sos007


I appreciate your ongoing of sharing personal experiences and health knowledge with this forum. I personally eat similar foods that you are talking about (Mediterranean diet) but with a limitation of CARBS daily intake as I am diabetic. After all eating the right, healthy and sustainable food that compatible with our health condition is what we should focus and apply.

Lean protein is the fastest way to deplete the liver of vitamin A (Weston A Price Foundation).

sos007Ambassador in reply to Concerned

Sorry, I'm not buying it...with all due respect.

As mentioned in my reply to Whatsagame77, you can find a study to support any view. I base my choices on the 'preponderance of evidence' and 'common sense' approach, along with my own personal results. The amount of vegetables and other foods I eat daily that are very high in Vitamin A are unlikely to be materially offset by having 2 servings of 3 oz. portions of lean chicken per week. Like I said, common sense.

I think you have also noted in your posts that skim milk raises blood glucose and you cited a study - once again, even if true, the amount of skim milk I consume per week in the form of Greek yogurt is more than offset by the fact that I consume virtually no other sugar or simple carbohydrates the rest of the time. My December blood test showed that I'm 'I.S.' - 'Insulin Sensitive' which means I don't have any issues with excessive blood glucose. My HBA1C and fasting glucose is also extremely low as are my triglycerides - so I will continue to consume 2% Greek yogurt daily without any concern.

All input is appreciated and spurs useful discussion.


Concerned in reply to sos007

It's insulin that skimmed milk spikes, not blood glucose.

What is your actual HbA1c reading please?

Dr. Kraft used insulin assays to find less than one in four of his patients had optimal insulin sensitivity, even though more looked normal from a glucose tolerance test.

sos007Ambassador in reply to Concerned

I can do better than the HbA1c - I actually had my insulin sensitivity directly measured.

For the record:

HbA1C - 4.7 mmol/l (October 2017)

Insulin Resistance Marker - LP-IR score - <25; this is in the <27 category (bottom quartile) - 'low risk' and classifies me as 'Insulin Sensitive'. (December 2017).

This measure was part of the NMR Lipoprofile test.

Concerned in reply to sos007

Those are excellent scores. Is that without any meds?

sos007Ambassador in reply to Concerned

Yes - as noted in my post, I stopped all meds in October 2016. Pharmaceuticals, in many cases, are band aid solutions when you have unresolved dietary and lifestyle habits. By addressing the underlying cause of illness and disease, you can throw away your meds.

Good luck!

sos007Ambassador in reply to Concerned

"In other words, eating lean meat or taking a protein powder sends a signal to the liver: “Send me vitamin A!” Protein consumed in the absence of fat, with its precious cargo of fat-soluble vitamins, including vitamin A, is an effective way of rapidly depleting your liver of vitamin A stores."


I note that your source says protein consumed in the absence of fat - fat does not have to be animal fat for the body to use as fuel - many plants and vegetables have fat, as do nuts and dairy products. Therefore, my daily intake of nuts, olives, olive oil, Greek feta and whole goat milk provide more than enough fat to assist the body in its nutritional requirements and avoid depletion of Vitamin A.

The rest of the article speaks of paleo societies that relied almost exclusively on animal protein in which case the argument for fatty meat over lean meat makes sense.

Everything must be viewed in context.

Concerned in reply to sos007

I agree.

Looking at the insulin index, lean protein stimulates higher levels of insulin though, so the fat should be eaten along with the protein.

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