Energy to the Max with Whole Foods

Michele DeFilippo Finds Vitality and Diet Can’t be Separated

As the owner of 1106 Design, and an active player in the creation of book covers, interiors, and business logos, Michele DeFilippo

The creative tasks at 1106 Design demand Michele's full energy

draws on physical and mental energy through long days and tight timelines. I met Michele when, impressed by 1106’s strong portfolio, I worked with her and her team on the cover and interior for The Perfect Formula Diet.

Several months later, Michele shared with me that she had decided to try the Perfect Formula Diet eating plan. This diet, based on whole plant foods, includes vegetables, fruit, beans, potatoes, whole grains, herbs, spices, nuts, and seeds. There are no artificial portion sizes. Instead, the diet balances the proportions of the different food types so you can eat whenever you are hungry and stop when you are full. The benefits for both health and permanent weight loss are impressive.

Here is Michele’s account of her experience with the Perfect Formula Diet.

Janice: What kinds of foods did you grow up eating?

Michele: I’m of Italian descent, so our diet was typically American with a lot of pasta and beef. Much of the Italian diet is very healthy…peas and macaroni, chick peas and macaroni, lentils and pasta, escarole and beans were all served regularly when I was growing up, so eating whole foods as specified in The Perfect Formula Diet has in many ways been a trip back to the past.

Janice: What kinds of foods do you eat now?

Michele: All of the above foods plus far more vegetables and fruit. I used to joke that I didn’t eat five servings of vegetables a month, let alone a day, as recommended.

Janice: When did you change your diet?

Michele: Almost three months ago.

Janice: What made you change your diet?

Michele: I wasn’t feeling “sick” but I wasn’t feeling “good” either. When the doctor prescribed medicine for high blood pressure, I realized I had been taking my good health for granted, and now needed to pay more attention.

Plug into energy and vitality with whole plant foods

Janice: What changes have you seen in your health and weight after you changed your diet?

Michele: My energy level has gone through the roof. I don’t feel sluggish and tired after eating anymore, and I’m not exhausted by 9 p.m. I’m losing weight slowly and steadily. I probably would lose weight faster if I were better at limiting grains to 25% of the diet, as specified in the book. I find this the most difficult part. Did I mention I’m Italian?

Janice: How much do you enjoy a diet based on whole plant foods?

Michele: Honestly, this diet is far more varied than the way I was eating before. I thought I would miss eating meat, but I don’t even think about it anymore. I’m discovering fruits and vegetables and new ways to cook them all the time, so I’m not at all bored, as was often the case with other diets I have tried.

Janice: What keeps you going with your current food choices?

Michele: I’ve “fallen off the wagon” a few times, and I immediately feel sluggish and tired — the way I used to feel all the time before following the Perfect Formula Diet. I used to accept that feeling as “normal” but now I know better, so it’s easy to stay motivated.

Janice: Why is it important for people to eat a diet based on whole plant foods?

Michele: The Perfect Formula Diet backed up its recommendations with interesting facts. I used to think that vegetarian and vegan diets and the people who followed them were “odd”, but now I see the value of eating this way.

Janice: Anything else you’d like to add?

Michele: Just that I can’t recommend this book enough. It truly did change my life, and I don’t make that statement lightly. We work on a lot of books at 1106 Design, and I can honestly say that this book rises above the norm in terms of the research and also in the quality of the writing that keeps the reader engaged.

Janice: Is it ok to share your age?

Michele: Sure. I’m 57.

For Michele, virtue is its own reward. The contrast between the energy level generated by whole plant foods and the sluggish inertia from eating animal foods keeps her happy with her new eating choices.

This is how much energy I had when eating animal and manufactured foods every day

I recall this same rocketing vitality myself when I changed my diet in 2000. On a diet filled with animal foods, I often felt I was pushing my way through sludge just to move, and couldn’t stay awake even on my morning bus ride to work. Now I can out-work and out-play people decades younger than I am.

The main reason for this improvement is that animal protein can provoke the immune system, which is designed to protect you against potential threats. If frequent dietary animal protein irritates your immune system, you will be in a near-constant state of chronic inflammation.

Fatigue and low energy are symptoms of inflammation. Think about how you feel when you have the flu. All you want to do is sleep. Just getting out of bed to get a glass of water may seem impossible. The fatigue is protective, designed to make sure you rest while your body puts all its energy into healing. Inflammation from other sources, including poor food choices, will lead to similar symptoms.

Michele’s inspiring example shows the way to a fuller, more intense life. Put your vitality into work or put it into having fun, or a little bit of both. Isn’t it great to have that choice?

Intrigued? Now you can use our Whole Foods Blog Finder to target informative, fun postings on plant-based nutrition. Quick information at no cost!

Blog posting by Janice Stanger, Ph.D. Janice authored The Perfect Formula Diet, a nutrition book built on sustainable food choices. Enjoy six kinds of whole foods for permanent, hunger-free weight loss and health.

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