Heart Disease | Information and Education about Heart Disease and Strokes | Dr Fuhrman.com

Hundreds of people recover with Eat To Live:

John Pawlikoski is a typical patient I see everyday. I am reporting his case here because he has been my patient for 10 years now, so I can report on his long-term results. He first came to see me at the age of 65 with a history of steadily worsening angina. His chest pains interfered with his daily life, so he was unable to perform physical work. He had a stress thallium test which suggested multi-vessel coronary artery disease. He then underwent a cardiac catherization, which revealed a 95 percent stenosis of the left anterior descending artery and had diffuse blockages throughout the left circumflex. He had normal heart function. His cholesterol was 218, with an LDL of 144. He weighed 180 pounds. He was on two medications – one for high blood pressure and nitroglycerin to relieve chest pains.

Within a few weeks of following my dietary recommendations, his chest pains ceased, and he no longer required nitroglycerin. In two months, his weight dropped to 152, a loss of 28 pounds in eight weeks. He remains exactly at 152 pounds today, 10 years later. He has been entirely well these last ten years and is extremely physically active. He takes no medication, and his blood pressure is normal. His LDL cholesterol runs about 80, and his stress test has normalized too. He has no signs or symptoms of heart disease.


Researchers have compared a high vegetable and fruit diet, like the diet recommended in Eat To Live with a grain-based, low-fat diet. Study participants who ate the high vegetable and fruit diet experienced a 33 percent drop in their bad cholesterol (LDL) which is a reduction that is greater than most cholesterol lowering drugs. This reduction is dramatically greater than for subjects eating a grain-rich Mediterranean diet or the modern low-fat diet recommended by the AHA.

The conclusion of the nutrition committee of the AHA is something we all agree on:

“There is overwhelming evidence that reduction in saturated fat, dietary cholesterol and weight offer the most effective dietary strategies for reducing total cholesterol, LDL-C levels and cardiovascular risk. Decreases in saturated fat should come at the expense of total fat because there is no biological requirement for saturated fat.”

The main difference between my recommendations and those of the AHA is that I adhere more rigorously to these conclusions than they do. You must do what is necessary to achieve the results desired. The results I see with my patients are consistently more spectacular than other dietary interventions because my advice is generally more rigorous and takes into account the nutrient-per-calorie density of foods to devise a plant-based diet that is maximally effective.

Two things are necessary to predictably reverse heart disease: one is to become thin and superbly nourished with antioxidants and phytochemicals found in natural plant foods, and the other is to get your LDL below 100. Reversal of heart disease then predictably occurs. By following my Eat To Live diet plan, one can both safely and effectively improve their health, while enjoying the benefits of great tasting food.


Ramsey LE, Yeo WW, Jackson PR. Dietary reduction of serum cholesterol concentration: time to think again. BMJ 303:953-957.
Barnard ND, Scialli AR, Bertron P, et al. Effectiveness of a low-fat vegetarian diet in altering serum lipids in healthy premenopausal women. Am J Cardiol. 2000 Apr 15;85(8):969-72.
Jenkins DJ, Kendall CW, Popovich DG, et al. Effect of a very-high-fiber vegetable, fruit and nut diet on serum lipids and colonic function. Metabolism 2001;(4):494-503.
Esselstyn CB Jr. Updating a 12-year experience with arrest and reversal therapy for coronary heart disease (an overdue requiem for palliative cardiology). Am J Cardiol 1999;84:339-341.
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