Dr. Andrew Weil is a pioneer of integrative medicine which a blend of conventional and alternative medicine. He goes against the grain of most diets which endorse a quick weight loss. He believes a slow weight loss of 1 to 2 pounds a week is the healthiest way to lose weight and keep it off.
A big advocate of the Mediterranean diet, Weil encourages consumption of whole grains, fruits and vegetables along with lean protein and healthy fats. With Dr. Weil’s diet plan you will have more energy, sleep better, and feel less stressed while improving your mental outlook and experience fewer illnesses.
Dr. Weil’s diet plan emphasizes eating wholesome, good-quality preferably organic foods. Your daily caloric consumption is broken down into 50 to 60% coming from complex carbohydrates, about 30% from healthy fats, and 10 to 20% from lean protein sources.
Complex carbohydrates make up most of your meals and includes fruits, vegetables, legumes, and whole grains like quinoa, oats, and brown rice. Most of your fiber needs (40 grams per day) will come from this group of foods. Healthy fats are unsaturated omega-3 fatty acids which are typically found in oily fish such as sardines and mackerel, along with nuts, seeds, and olive oil. Plant-based protein sources are a better way to go, according to Weil.
He recommends substituting animal proteins with beans and tofu whenever you can. Other types of protein sources include fish which is prominent in the Mediterranean diet along with poultry. While red meat is not off-limits, Weil does encourage you to eat less of it.
Weil maintains you can get plenty of calcium from other foods not just dairy products which he suggests to cut back on because milk is not that easily digested. The foods he recommends are: sardines (bones and all!), leafy greens, broccoli, tofu, calcium-fortified orange juice, fortified soy milk and sea vegetables, such as nori, dulse, and kombu.
Drink 6 to 8 glasses of water a day while reducing your consumption of foods with sugar and wheat flour. Watch your saturated fat intake and avoid margarine, vegetable shortening, partially hydrogenated oils (trans fat) and fried foods. Weil recommends taking a multi-vitamin supplement that includes vitamin C, vitamin E, selenium, carotenoids, a B-complex vitamin and calcium.
In Dr. Weil’s book Eating Well For Optimum Health, he provides recipes such as:
- Tart Cherry Apple Crunch
- Almond Butter Cookies
- Lentil Walnut Spread
- Mushroom Barley Soup
- Sweet & Sour Stir-Fry Red Cabbage
- Carrot Nut Torte
- Dill Poached Fish Fillets
- Jicama Orange Salad
Exercise is recommended to help lose weight and maintain a weight loss.
- All your nutritional needs are met following Weil’s diet plan.
- His principles for healthy eating are supported by scientific research.
- You will lower your risk for developing diabetes, cancer and heart disease by eating a variety of fruits, vegetables, whole grains and foods high in omega-3 fatty acids recommended by Weil.
- Your digestive tract will thank you because of your increased fiber consumption and you will have better success at keeping your weight off by following this diet plan.
- Limiting dairy decreases your calcium and vitamin D intake which important for healthy bones. Even though Weil mentions other sources of calcium, most people are not going to eat things like sardines, bones and all.
- Weil is a big advocate of soy, but certain individuals need to be wary about soy’s estrogen-like effect on the body.
- Not all the supplements that Weil recommends have any real benefits such as vitamin C and E along with CoQ10.
- Supplements increase the costs of the program along with buying organic products.
- No detailed exercise plan to follow.
This is definitely one of the better diets around. Anyone can adopt this way of eating and it can be individualized to your specific tastes or needs such as vegetarianism or gluten-free. It is recommended that you add more of the right dairy foods than what he recommends so you can obtain your required calcium needs.
Dr. Weil has written several books on health and wellness that you can purchase. If you're looking to transition to a healthier lifestyle that will lead to weight loss, click now for copies of Eating Well for Optimum Health and Natural Health, Natural Medicine.