Choose Health Over Heart Disease


If you’ve been diagnosed with heart disease, or worse, have suffered a heart attack, I feel for you, my friend.

When my husband, W, experienced his chest pains, and as I rushed him to the hospital, all I could think about wasEmergency Room how my life was changing right before my eyes at warp speed.  I didn’t like it.  I found myself wishing that it wasn’t happening to me.  In reality, it wasn’t happening to me, but W was clearly scared to the point of panic because his life was surely over.  I’ve had that feeling before.  I hate that feeling of impending doom.


“I’m not ready to leave the world yet”


W told me that he just wasn’t ready to leave the world yet, and I know I certainly wasn’t ready for him to go either!  We had to do something to fix “it” and we had to do it fast.

W is a research junkie.  He loves to look things up on Google and then read all he can about his current topic of interest.  So, W immersed himself in researching everything he could find out about heart disease.

W soon found that, amazingly, heart disease can actually be reversed!  What?!!  Well, sign me up right now!  But wait…how do we change decades of lifestyle abuse?  Especially overnight?

Well, it didn’t happen overnight, but with medical intervention, W was given more time to make significant changes to his lifestyle.  Wow, more time…what a gift!  It took about 3 months, but after adopting a plant-based diet and moderating his lifestyle, W started to see improvements in his health scores.  His cholesterol was coming down, his blood sugar was down, his weight was down, his waist size was down, and his libido was up!  Ok, TMI, sorry about that.

That was in 2011, so 6 years later, here we are, still dedicated to living a healthier lifestyle.

Apparently, heart disease can occur in anyone at any age.  So, with that terrible outlook, let’s get started right now on learning how to cut out the garbage fast food in our diet and embrace all the naturally occurring benefits that are found by eating a plant-based diet.


It’s time to make changes


You won’t be starving yourself if you choose to eat this way.  Actually, you’ll never really get overly hungry because Healthy Foodsyou can pretty much eat as much as you want.  You just have to make good choices.  It’s not hard to do once you get past the food cravings.  That, in my opinion, is the hardest part of changing your eating habits.  Food cravings are a sign that you are pretty much addicted to sugar, salt, and fat.  It takes a few weeks to break the cycle, but once you do it, you’ll be amazed at how much better you feel.

Just a heads up:  you might get cranky while you go through the withdrawl phase, so warn everyone in your family and all of your friends about what you are doing.  Even better, invite them to join you on your journey!  Then you can all be cranky together for a few weeks and get it out of the way so you can all move on to the joys of healthy eating.


Choose Health over Heart Disease


I hope you’ve made the commitment to choose health over heart disease, and I hope you’ll be joining me here frequently where I will share everything I know about how to adopt and thrive on a plant-based diet and heart-healthy lifestyle.

Feel free to click on my pages at the top of this page.  I’ll be adding posts on the reality of heart disease, ways to save money by cooking at home, how to order a healthy meal when you’re at a restaurant, exercising and fun activities, recipes, helpful kitchen gadgets, and other resources to help you on your journey.

I also welcome your insights and feedback.  If we work together, we can all help each other to Choose Health Over Heart Disease.

If you ever have a question, I’ll be right here.  Just type in a comment below and I’ll do my best to answer your questions.

Think I’ll go get a snack now.

Talk to you soon,


9 comments on

  1. I am curious. Without going further into your web page, is W still on the plant based diet or has his heart disease improved to where he is on a more Mediterranean based diet with essential fatty acids that improve HDL levels and lowers Triglycerides and increases LDL size? Does W exercise much? I am having a hard time exercising without fear. If he does, how did he get to that point. Did he have a heart attack or was it an event caught early enough to prevent one. Thanks!

    1. Hi, Mark:
      Yes, he is. We’ve added fish to the diet and egg whites, but always coupled with lots of veggies and no dairy. Have you tried the plant-based approach yet? W was found to have a 75% blockage so they inserted a stent. He did not have a heart attack. Yes, he does exercise now, but was very fearful at first. They should have put him through cardiac rehab, but that was not offered at the time. His doctors, especially the cardiologist, were finally able to convince him that it was ok to exercise. He started out slowly, and is now riding 100 mile rides on his bicycle. The key is to get your doctor’s approval before starting out exercising, and then be sure to do it!!

      1. Thank you Susan. Are you going to add things on exercise or maybe online support groups or something? I have been on a plant base diet but not to the extreme. I am more of a vegetarian. I will check back in. Can you also make your sight respond with an email when you respond to questions?

        Thanks again and I look forward to more from your site.


        1. Hi, Mark:
          I will definitely be adding in more content on exercise, as well as vegan, vegetarian, and pescatarian recipe options. As far as online support groups, I’ll add a post about cardiac rehab. It’s a wonderful service offered by your hospital. W wasn’t offered cardiac rehab, which is a shame, because he had to overcome his fear of exercising all on his own. Going through cardiac rehab would have helped him get back into exercising much quicker than he did. Also, I’ll take a look at your suggestion of an email notification when posting a response. I’m sure there is a way, I just need to find it!

  2. Susan,
    I am what you call a “foodie”, I love to eat food. I am one of those people who like to eat what they want and when they want. I mean why do I care, I’m still skinny after three kids and almost 40, right? I never thought about the heart or anything else, but my figure…until my son’s MD told us his cholesterol is high. After that I started making the necesary changes in my life. The fact is we have to foster good healthy habits, because our children will do what we do.
    I am looking forward to checking out your healthy recipes because this is a struggle for me

    1. Thank you for your comment. I agree, we just never think about our heart when we are in our younger years. It seems to take a wake-up call to get us actively thinking about eating right. And I agree, our kids are watching what we do (and eat) so it is up to us to show them the best choices. I hope to have some recipes up soon!

  3. What a heart breaking story and terrible thing to happen to you and your husband. I am glad that things have been turned around thanks to a healthy diet.

    I must admit that I do eat the odd junk food, but I do eat some healthy food too. Although it is not as much as I like. I just need to try and cut out the junk altogether to become more healthy.

    I have tried a few times to cut sugar out of my diet, but that hasn’t lasted for a couple of weeks. I will just keep trying.

    1. Hi, Owain: good for you for trying to cut back on sugar! I’m learning that sugar, salt, and fat (aka bacon) are the 3 worst things we can eat. I, too, still struggle with the occasional junk food binge; I guess we’ve been around it for so long that it’s really hard to give up. But I did find that replacing white sugar (which has zero benefits) with honey or even maple syrup has helped bring my blood sugar levels down. I also found that using honey that is collected in the area where I live (Colorado) has also helped reduce my allergies in the spring. Maybe because it’s produced by local bees from the pollen of local wildflowers?

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