“Came from a plant, eat it; was made in a plant, don’t.” Michael Pollan

I don’t know about you, but I am tired of all the different social media influencers promoting what appear to be fad diets.  One theme is clear. However, there seem to be two very different camps:  the carnivore, high fat, with low carb, and the plant-based, high carb, with low protein.   

With all this confusion, I thought I’d check out my go-to researcher on food, the 68-year-old research scientist and host of the YouTube channel Plant Chompers, Chris MacAskill.  Chris has over 95,0000 subscribers, and his posts seem research-based and well-documented. 

In fact, in his recent 3-part series, How Long Do Health Influencers Live? MacAskill compares the lifespan of the various diets’ top researchers, influencers, and authors.  It’s worth watching. The first video was so successful that he created two more on this topic. 

In this 3-part series, he showcases The China Study (the longest food study in history), The Mediterranean Diet, Atkins, Dr. Kellog and his crusade against protein, the Fasting Diet, and much more. 

During this video series, MacAskill is building a chart of how long the health influencers he references lived or live (many are still living into their 80s, 90s, and beyond).  The overwhelming winners for life expectancy lean toward the plant-based diet.  This does not mean vegan or vegetarian, but plants comprise the biggest part of the diet.  For example:

  • Jeremiah Stamler, still researching at age 100, eats the Mediterranean diet.  The Mediterranean Diet was discovered by Ancel and Margaret Keys after their world-famous Seven Countries Study.
  • And 87-year-old T. Colin Campbell, who just published a new book called, The Future of Nutrition:  An Insider’s Guide to the Science, summarized that the closer we get to a plant-based diet, the healthier we will be. 

You will need to research to see what’s best for you, and this month’s guests and resources should give you a good start!

My first Smart Women Talk episode this month is a conversation with three super vibrant friends, Marla Pennington, Joanna Klein, and Colleen Kilpatrick, who all agreed to share openly what they eat and why they eat that way.  Marla, for example, grew up on a farm with cows, hogs, and chickens and regularly eats steak and a glass of wine.  She also walks nearly 4 miles daily, following the steps of her mother, who is in her 80s and still walks daily (her mom recently married a man in his 70s!).  You will enjoy hearing about their journeys.

Next, Vicki Brett-Gach, a Master-Certified Vegan Lifestyle Coach, Plant-Based Culinary Instructor, Certified Personal Chef, and author of The Plant-Based for Life Cookbook will join us. Her recipes have been featured in publications, including Forks Over Knives Magazine, Health Science, VegWorld Magazine, and Global Vegan Magazine. Connect with Vicki through her popular recipe blog Ann Arbor Vegan Kitchen.

I’ve learned so much from our guests and have been gluten-free for two years now, and at the beginning of the year, I decided to limit sugar, dairy, and meat.  I’m not a vegetarian, but we eat an organic, GMO-free diet, with most meals cooked from scratch and made up of mostly vegetables.  The more I eat this way, the better I feel! 

I hope this month’s issue helps you feel more confident about how to live a more vibrant, joyful, and healthy life!

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Katana Abbott, CFP®, is a Midlife Millionaires® Coach and Certified Social Security Claiming Specialist, and the host of Smart Women Talk. For over 35 years, Katana has helped Baby Boomers plan for retirement, including how to create lifetime income, how to optimize their Social Security benefits, launch an encore career, and prepare for long-term care.  She has written several books, created a financial literacy course, and is a popular speaker. Katana has been honored by NAWBO as one of Detroit’s Top 10 Businesswomen, receiving the Breakthrough Award. To download her new retirement guide, Three Smart Strategies to Maximize Your Retirement Income, visit www.katanaabbott.com.