I first became aware of Dr. Fuhrman about three and a half years ago, when he made an appearance on the Dr. Oz Show. I had already lost a lot of weight but hadn't reached my goal yet.
I was searching for foods that would promote good health as I wanted to lower my blood pressure without prescription drugs. Dr. Fuhrman's nutritional plan provided foods that I incorporated in my diet everyday.
First, I'd like to get away from the word "diet". I think of a diet as a temporary fix, never a permanent solution to maintain a healthy weight. In order to sustain healthy weight loss, without risk of gaining it all back, you have to have a lifestyle change. For me, that meant giving up overly processed, sugary foods and replacing them with healthy foods like fruits and vegetables.
During my first few months of weight loss, I made small modifications. I researched foods that would lower blood pressure and incorporate them in my eating plan. I remember adding foods like pomegranates and lemons, while looking at food labels aggressively seeking foods with lower sodium. I was doing well, but I kept wanting to add more foods that promote good health. That's where Dr. Fuhrman's GBOMBS foods came in the picture.
Dr. Fuhrman created a meal plan based on vegetables and fruit with no or minimal animal products. He published his plan in a book I purchased called Eat To Live. The GBOMBS that I mentioned is an acronym. It stands for greens, beans, onions, mushrooms, berries and seeds. These are the fundamental foods of his meal plan. Those that follow his diet consider themselves nutritarians.
During the course of my weight loss, I never really considered myself a nutritarian or any other dieting label. I did my own research on what foods to eat for health. But I've realized something: the meal plan that mostly identifies with my eating plan is nutritarian. I eat the GBOMBS foods everyday; I have minimal animal products, having turkey a few times a week as a way to flavor the main dish, the veggies, just as Dr. Fuhrman advises. I always have a big meal of a salad for dinner, I mean a huge salad! I'm never hungry with his plan. I don't have the processed foods and I don't eat processed or red meats. I think that makes me a nutritarian more than any other nutritional plan.
Of course, what worked for my weight loss may not be for you. In my case, I was on a mission to find foods that would improve health along with sustain good health. I never missed having red meat, so it was an easy transition for me. Some people have said to me that I could start having grass fed beef as that's a healthy way to eat red meat. I figure, if I don't miss it, why bother? But it's a personal choice and if you have a lot of weight to lose, you need an eating plan that you can stick with. If you think there's no way you could ever give up meat, then maybe the paleo diet is for you instead. At least, you would be eliminating the processed sugary foods and will lose weight.
Even though I mostly identify with the nutritarian label, I do still have a few foods that are not on Dr. Fuhrman's list, but I don't eat them every day. For example, I do have eggs a few times a week. The reason? I don't want to have to rely on a supplement to get the nutrients I'm missing. Eggs have vitamin B12, and unfortunately, there is no way to get vitamin B12 from a vegetarian diet without supplementation. Also, as I said earlier, I also have turkey a few times a week. But the salad is always my biggest meal, never the turkey. I also have a smoothie everyday, with a variety of raw vegetables and berries.
All I know is that I feel great... high energy levels and have kept my weight off since I reached my goal weight three years ago. It worked for me, so I have a lot of respect for Dr. Fuhrman and his nutritarian eating plan!