FAMILY/ Marriage

Two Books To Strengthen My Marriage 2012-Part 3 – Purposeful Living

These posts are written by Todd (Amy’s husband) designed to model a system of purposeful living.  At least once a month, I spend time setting meaningful goals around one of seventeen core priorities. 
If you missed it, consider reading the foundation post – Purposeful Living #1.
Correct Priority
Priority #4 – Social Health – Immediate Family-Spouse(Social & Emotional Health)
Goal Setting & Reflection Date
Sunday, February 26
Invest in the social and emotional helath of my wife and strengthen my marraige by reading and discussing two books with Amy in 2012.  The first book must be a mutually agreed up marriage book.  The second book may be any book of Amy’s choice.  Specific goals include:
  • Mutually choose a marriage book.
  • Amy chooses a book of her choice.
  • Decide how often to read and discuss each book.
  • Develop a plan to ensure relevant discussion and dialogue.
Goal Status
Partially Completed
Instead of a book, Amy asked if we could watch 2 documentaries that were important to her.  On the first Saturday of May Amy and I ordered in some super yummy Indian food and watched the documentary Fat, Sick, & Nearly Dead on Netflix. 
Film Summary
Fat, Sick, & Nearly Dead is a documentary about Joe Cross who overcame obesity and a variety of serious chronic illnesses by going on a primarily plant-based diet.
Project Reflection
My thoughts on the film are below, but most important are my thoughts on my relationship with Amy and why we watched this film together.
Fat, Sick, & Nearly Dead is not a film I would have chosen to watch on my own.  I watched it because it was important to Amy.  I watched it because what is important to her is important to me.
While I watched this film I really tried to view it through Amy’s eyes.  She is a breast cancer survivor and is fighting to prevent recurrence.
In addition to traditional medicine, Amy has chosen to fight recurrence through a radical change to her diet.  She has embraced a “plant-based” diet and was at least partially inspired by this film.
Overall, I am incredibly proud of how Amy has approached her fight against cancer.  The decisions she has made related to diet I support and agree with 100%.
I don’t know if her cancer will return, but I know she is doing everything possible to prevent that from happening.  For nearly two years she has faithfully maintained a diet consisting of the most healthy foods a person can possibly eat. 
It is inspirational to me and I’m super proud of her.
She wants to see her girls grow up.  She wants to be a good mom and eventually a good grandma.  She wants to deepen her relationship with me and invest in the lives of others.
And I need her.  I would be lost without her.
Film Ideas & Statistics That Stood Out To Me
The film promotes eating foods rich in micronutrients.  Fruits, vegetables, nuts, and beans are all rich in micronutrients.
The typical American diet has less than 10% of our calories coming from nutrient rich foods.  The other 90% of our calories come from nutrient deficient foods.
The closer food is to its natural state the more rich it is in nutrients.
The major problem with processed food is that the micronutrients have been processed right out of them.
Dr. Fuhrman is highlighted in this documentary.  He developed his own food pyramid called the Nutrient Dense Food Pyramid.  
I have never heard of Dr. Fuhrman before, nor have I heard about his alternative food pyramid.  I am very interested in learning more about his background in nutrition and will spend some time on his website over the next couple of weeks.
Film Reflection
There are a million different diets.  A trip to the bookstore or an internet search will reveal hundreds if not thousands of experts in nutrition all claiming that their diet is the best.
But I have never thought food was all that complicated.  Back in college I read a book written by vegetarians and decided that eating fruits and vegetables was the way to go.
It seemed common sense to me that an orange would be more healthy than a hamburger.  It seeemed common sense to me that a carrot would be more healthy than a ho-ho.
Over the past year Amy has pushed my thinking further by personally embracing a plant-based diet – a diet which consists of eating foods which come from plants as close to their natural state as possible.  These foods are rich in disease fighting micronutrients.
Before I go any further, I want to make it clear that I am far from a healthy eater.  I like my junk food.  I like my McDonalds.  I like my diet pop.  While I believe fruits and vegetables are the way to go, I don’t personally eat a lot of fruit and veggies.
But I am fully aware a day will come when I will need to make a permanent change and embrace healthy eating habits.  And when that day comes I will choose a plant-based diet.
The challenge to any diet, however, is finding healthy foods you actually like to eat.  I like to eat.  I want to enjoy my food.
Lucky for me Amy has been traveling this plant-based foods journey for a while now and has developed some great recipes.  She has already hooked me up with all kinds of healthy, but tasty, foods. When I am ready to fully walk that path, I will be more than set!
Maybe when I turn 50?
Link To Foundation Post
Outline Of All Purposeful Living Posts
Purposeful Living Series

Links To Additional Posts In This Series

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  • Melissa
    June 13, 2012 at 1:23 pm

    I’ve been plant strong since 9/2011. I too was inspired by a documentary, but this one was called “Forks over Knives”. Just don’t forget that embracing a plant-strong diet now (instead of when you have a more important reason to) can be PREVENTATIVE! That is one of the major reasons I made the switch. My whole family suffers from high cholesterol and high blood pressure. After my father saw me make the switch (and drop 15 pounds in 4 months) he decided to commit to a three month trial. He dropped 30 pounds (and finally changed his label as “morbidly obese” with his doctor) lowered his cholesterol by 20 points. His doctor is just so impressed with these immediate changes… all by cutting out meat and dairy. He feels great and is continuing with these changes. He does have an occasional “cheat”, but he won’t ever go back to eating the way he did before. His goal is to get off Lipitor (he’s been on it for 8 years!) and I know he’ll be able to do it if he continues eating this way.

    Sending Amy wishes of continued health and wellness from her diagnosis. Tell her to watch Forks over Knives – she’d love it!

  • erin
    June 11, 2012 at 12:05 pm

    great post. you sound like my husband. I know veggies are good for me but…..

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