'Heart attack proof' diet worked for me
August 19th, 2011
10:42 AM ET

'Heart attack proof' diet worked for me

I remember the day as if it were yesterday. I was lying in my hospital bed anxiously waiting for another unwanted heart catheterization. I was questioning how this could be happening to me again.

After all, I was only 41 years old. I was in pretty good shape. I didn’t smoke. I ate pretty well. Bad luck, bad genes, what was causing me to need a fifth heart procedure? It was easy to start feeling sorry for myself.

Then I thought about the book that I just finished reading for the second time since my last heart procedure that was sadly and inexplicably preformed just five months prior. It inspired me to pick up my iPad and search for the book’s author Dr. Esselstyn.

Esselstyn's  'heart attack proof' diet

Within seconds I was watching a CNN video on YouTube with Wolf Blitzer interviewing President Bill Clinton, Dr. Esselstyn and Dr. Dean Ornish on how one might prevent and even reverse heart disease through diet and exercise. Motivated to go further, I then found Dr.Esselstyn’s office number on the internet and called without having any reasonable expectation that he could be reached.

Will you have a heart attack? These tests can tell

To my surprise, his assistant Jackie answered the phone and told me that she would have Dr. Esselstyn return my call as soon as possible. As I hung up the phone, I had to scratch my head and question whether a famous doctor and author in Cleveland who I had just watched on CNN, who didn’t know me from Adam, would return my call as I lay there helplessly in my hospital bed.

To my surprise he did.

I had been rolled into the waiting/recovery room for the catheterization lab when my cell phone rang, that I am pretty sure I was not supposed to be using in the hospital, with Dr. Esselstyn calling. He caringly asked about my health history, blood work results and current symptoms that had led me back to the hospital again that day.

Sadly, he admitted that there was only so much he could do as I was literally minutes from being rolled into the next room to have the catheterization performed, but he did promise that he was convinced there was a way that I could prevent this hospital visit from ever happening again and that I would be hearing from him soon.

Moments later, my heart catheterization had begun and three hours later I was back in my hospital room in tears realizing that I just had three more stents placed around my heart.

In the nine years that preceded that day, I had progressively lost hope. After my first of eight stents were placed at the age of 31, a friend had given me a book called  "Dr. Dean Ornish's Program for Reversing Heart Disease." After reading it I was inspired and confident that I could prevent this from ever happening again.

I then reached out to those that I thought I could trust - doctors, cardiologists, even a nutritionist to validate what I had read. It is safe to say that my confidence quickly turned to confusion. I remember stating, “If eating tree bark and water would keep me out of the hospital, then that is what I would do." Sadly, rather than confirmation, I instead was told that it was not necessary or even realistic that I commit to the lifestyle changes recommend by the book.

Nine years and eight stents later, I can’t help but think that the advice I received was well intentioned but nonetheless wrong.

After my fourth catheterization last June, I decided enough was enough and that there had to be a better way to go. I switched to a doctor that was part of the MDVIP program (focusing on  preventive, personalized health care) that had a nutritionist on staff. During my visit with the nutritionist, she recommended strongly that I read Dr. Esselstyn’s book "Prevent and Reverse Heart Disease." After immediately reading the book cover to cover, I once again visited with my doctor and cardiologist who were clearly more supportive than my experience from years before, but there still was a suggestion that what I had read was too extreme, unrealistic, and even unnecessary.

Still confused, I did eat much better and exercised regularly. However, I did not follow what was recommended in the book to the letter. I found myself back in the hospital again that November.

Since that day in the hospital, I have not allowed any professional’s opinion or excuse to deter me from implementing what Dr. Esselstyn recommends. I attended his one day program at the Cleveland Clinic in December. My diet has consisted exclusively of fruits, vegetables, grains and beans with no added oils, nuts, seeds or avocado.

What your cholesterol numbers really mean

I have lost 48 pounds. My blood work has gone from total cholesterol of 208, LDL of 93, HDL of 41, and triglycerides of 368 last June to most recent results of total cholesterol of 89, LDL of 19, HDL of 53, and triglycerides of 83. That transformation is nothing short of amazing.

My next challenge is where to go next with my heart medications, which would seem to be unnecessary based on the miraculous change in my blood work.

I don’t blame my doctors, my cardiologists or nutritionists over the years. I believe they had my best interest at heart. I do believe, however, that the world deserves better advice on how to live a long and happy life, free of heart and other diseases.

I know there are no guarantees in life, but I am convinced beyond belief that I am on the right track. If I can do it, I know that anyone else can. They just need to be given a chance by being pointed in the right direction. Hopefully those hearing about my life experiences will help them avoid taking nine years to figure it out as it did with me.

soundoff (1,261 Responses)
  1. red stag casino no deposit bonus

    big deal casino new york ny https://casinoxsbonus.com/ jackpot party casino

    March 26, 2021 at 15:17 | Report abuse | Reply
  2. FbshEncox

    https://thesisacloud.com/ – thesis writing online help with a thesis statement master thesis writing service thesis for dummies

    March 26, 2021 at 23:17 | Report abuse | Reply
  3. the best live sex cam

    Ugh the amount of willpower it takes to log on cam again after a week away.

    I'm not ready for a dead chatroom but if I don't get on today, it won't get better haha.

    Trying to mentally prepare myself for a dead shift in advance.

    March 27, 2021 at 19:59 | Report abuse | Reply
  4. sexy live Webcam

    RT @Free_cams_4: Join my … Welcome to Our room>

    March 28, 2021 at 05:45 | Report abuse | Reply
  5. dankwoods

    Thanks to my father who informed me concerning this webpage, this web site is actually

    March 28, 2021 at 13:32 | Report abuse | Reply
  6. https://baamardom.ir/181138/---/

    Hello mates, how is the whole thing, and what you would like to say on the
    topic of this post, in my view its in fact amazing in support of me.

    March 28, 2021 at 14:18 | Report abuse | Reply
  7. http://www.wikidot.com/user:info/rosihain8

    I always spent my half an hour to read this webpage's content
    everyday along with a cup of coffee.

    March 28, 2021 at 15:10 | Report abuse | Reply
  8. Kristie

    Try it today for yourself and experience what a chat room for adult
    fun can offer you. It really is a lot of fun to take part
    in all aspects of what Meet in Chat has to offer and we really cannot wait for
    you to sign up with us so we can join you on that
    journey. There were an awful lot of catfights,' she
    says. After careful consideration, we have given Adult
    Friend Finder a 4-star rating because it checks a lot of the boxes required to
    create a good dating experience. He noted defiantly in his Instagram apology: 'But I'm also not going to allow a person to have financial gain off
    of my mistakes and in this particular situation that was what
    was attempted. We're only going to get this chance
    once. This just waiting a move free adult chat roooms
    conversation going on your date, make sure you have enough.

    March 29, 2021 at 07:14 | Report abuse | Reply
  9. ggwpstore

    Ahaa, its fastidious discussion about this article at this place at this weblog, I have read all that, so
    now me also commenting at this place.

    Also visit my webpage :: ggwpstore

    March 29, 2021 at 09:23 | Report abuse | Reply
  10. free adult sex cams

    OMG! You have to see this. BIGOLIVE >Will be on chatrabate in 30.

    March 29, 2021 at 11:00 | Report abuse | Reply
  11. chaterba

    When you're ready to have sex during your menstruation, you
    should get your man to straddle you while you're lying on your
    back. Two of the arms of the platform had walls,
    creating a more secure space, while the other arms were wide open. We
    ran the business like this with no more than three total
    workers including both of us for about five years.
    Meanwhile, in South Korea, two sets of parents of alleged rape victims launched a civil suit against the three accused who fled,
    but the courts dismissed the suit in April. HBO announced as far back as April
    that it had begun work on a film on the topic. This film
    will focus on the efforts of Catherine Oxenberg whose daughter, India, was snared in the cult.
    In a press release, Lifetime said the movie will feature "a mother who will stop at nothing to get her daughter back and exposes the intricate seductive power of Allison and Keith and the mental and physical abuse India fell victim to."
    The project will star Andrea Roth as Catherin Oxenberg, Peter Facinelli
    as Raniere, Jasper Polish as India, and Sara Fletcher as Allison Mack.
    Battlestar Galactica star Nicki Clyne and Smallville actor Allison Mack
    were reportedly with Keith Raniere when he was arrested.

    March 30, 2021 at 03:04 | Report abuse | Reply
  12. GrvCrulk

    https://kloviagrli.com/ – mexican viagra brands https://vigedon.com/ – viagra without presc https://llecialisjaw.com/ – who makes cialis https://jwcialislrt.com/ – cialis manufacturer coupon 2019 https://jecialisbn.com/ – cialis daily dosage

    March 30, 2021 at 12:10 | Report abuse | Reply
  13. FbshEncox

    https://thesisacloud.com/ – thesis literature review thesis assistance phd no thesis good thesis statements

    April 1, 2021 at 04:42 | Report abuse | Reply
  14. AbgcEncox

    https://thesiswritingtob.com/ – doctoral thesis writing good thesis writing how to write thesis proposal thesis topics in education

    April 2, 2021 at 03:49 | Report abuse | Reply
  15. Buy diet pills

    Our experts first start with an exhaustive analysis of each and every ingredient comparing and researching clinical studies, known effective doses, then comparing what they learned to what the diet pill companies are putting into the diet pills. Not only that but they also conduct a careful safety analysis looking for indications of possible side-effects and other safety issues that may come from the use of different diet pills. Then they combine their painstaking analysis with the analysis of ordinary consumer like you that may or may not have had success using the process. Then we share what they discovered with you.


    April 2, 2021 at 03:55 | Report abuse | Reply
  16. Https://Publicsexgif.Com

    estaba en omegle y lo vi, yo estaba súper emocionado (no grité, solo dije “ruben, eres tu?”) y de ahí pasó otro>cha> sin siquiera
    hablarme. Creo que mi>cámar> no le cargó.
    yo juraba que me había topado era una fancam falsa, pero cuando vi la foto me di
    cuenta que fue el real

    April 3, 2021 at 15:57 | Report abuse | Reply
  17. chatturbatt

    Finally focus cam やんちゃBOY やんちゃGIRL of
    my favorite boy can be watch on youtube

    Let's streaming

    April 4, 2021 at 11:56 | Report abuse | Reply
  18. https://unsplash.com/@jossyu7

    Hello Dear, are you truly visiting this web site regularly, if so afterward you
    will without doubt get fastidious knowledge.

    April 5, 2021 at 12:46 | Report abuse | Reply
  19. Energia solar en colombia

    Thank you, I have recently been searching for info approximately this subject for a while and yours is the best I have found out till now. But, what concerning the conclusion? Are you sure in regards to the supply?


    April 5, 2021 at 12:56 | Report abuse | Reply
  20. http://ufotech.com.vn/members/kiaanamin8.698280/

    Wow! In the end I got a webpage from where I be capable of truly get useful data concerning my study and knowledge.

    April 5, 2021 at 13:49 | Report abuse | Reply
  21. https://www.openlearning.com/u/tomarise-qp9kr8/

    Howdy! Do you know if they make any plugins to assist with Search Engine
    Optimization? I'm trying to get my blog to rank for
    some targeted keywords but I'm not seeing very good gains.
    If you know of any please share. Thanks!

    April 5, 2021 at 14:16 | Report abuse | Reply
  22. free live nude chat

    The school's sense of community was important for her, and she remains working there today.
    Potentially my favourite opening line of an article ever right there.
    They never cross the line or mention anything excessively vulgar.
    But the judge was unconvinced, ordering Decker to be held
    in jail without bail until his next court appearance in November on the grounds that he presented a danger to the community.
    "In my view, there is a pattern of unlawful conduct that presents a danger to the community in the actions of Richard Decker,"
    Conforti stated. The list of charges that Decker faces includes second-degree possession of explosives; second-degree
    possession of a destructive device to use unlawfully; fourth-degree procuring an animal in any
    kind of sexual manner or initiate any sexual conduct with an animal; fourth-degree threatening to commit aggravated assault; fourth-degree knowingly manufacturing firearms;
    and multiple cyber harassment charges, the Herald reported.

    April 5, 2021 at 16:29 | Report abuse | Reply
  23. tadalafil 40

    tadalis sx https://elitadalafill.com/ tadalafil 40

    April 5, 2021 at 17:27 | Report abuse | Reply
  24. Bell

    We understand the need of the other, and meet that need the
    best we can. If you meet somebody new, don't bring your fears with you.
    How do I find my answers? It is so refreshing
    to find a REAL Superior Female who knows it and can teach it while we all look on in awe.
    I lost someone very close to me how can I find peace in life?

    I could talk to someone about this. It's a combination of these things that is why your ex won't talk to
    you. Your ex's rampant emotions are why your ex won't talk to
    you right now. There are very good reasons why your ex won't talk to you, and there are definitely things that you can do that will solve this problem.
    The sincerity of your message will help to
    make the pain and anger disappear, and there will
    be no more reasons as to why your ex won't talk to you. It
    is very likely that your message will win.

    April 6, 2021 at 03:34 | Report abuse | Reply
  25. Free cam to cam sex

    THIS IS MY FAVORITE. I even came to this room twice and still got amazed by it.
    Not only because it talks about sex, which actually is very interesting, but also because—

    April 6, 2021 at 07:40 | Report abuse | Reply
  26. https://community.linksys.com/t5/user/viewprofilepage/user-id/1265807

    I think the admin of this web site is in fact working hard
    in favor of his web site, for the reason that here every material is quality based

    April 6, 2021 at 07:41 | Report abuse | Reply
  27. how do you take vardenafil 20 mg?

    vardenafil 20mg tablets https://vegavardenafil.com/ vardenafil, dapoxetine)

    April 6, 2021 at 14:16 | Report abuse | Reply
  28. cheapest sildenafil india

    sildenafil 100mg price comparison https://eunicesildenafilcitrate.com/ sildenafil 50

    April 6, 2021 at 18:36 | Report abuse | Reply
  29. ช่างกุญแจนอกสถานที่

    Sweet blog! I found it while surfing around on Yahoo News. Do you have any tips on how to get listed in Yahoo News?
    I've been trying for a while but I never seem to get there!
    Thank you

    April 7, 2021 at 10:22 | Report abuse | Reply
  30. Amelie

    I never thought I’d be this excited to buy a Bose home theater for our room, I’m
    about to annoy my girl w some loud surround sound soon

    April 8, 2021 at 17:48 | Report abuse | Reply
  31. FbshEncox

    https://thesisacloud.com/ – thesisacloud.com help me write a thesis thesisacloud.com writing thesis

    April 8, 2021 at 21:52 | Report abuse | Reply
  32. flat stomach diet plan

    Great post. I'm experiencing some of these issues as well..

    April 9, 2021 at 07:07 | Report abuse | Reply
  33. dairymen

    I think the admin of this web page is in fact working hard for his site,
    since here every information is quality based information.

    April 9, 2021 at 09:09 | Report abuse | Reply
  34. 비트코인믹싱

    Fine way of explaining, and nice article to take data regarding my presentation subject, which i am
    going to convey in college.

    April 9, 2021 at 10:21 | Report abuse | Reply
  35. https://camchatadult.com/

    Naked girls, snakes and forbidden fruitsdurianemoji Photos do this bandana no justice Come see it in person this weekend @renegadecraft booth 133.
    ONLY 100 made! Use code HAPPYBIRTHDAY for an event…

    April 9, 2021 at 10:52 | Report abuse | Reply
  36. https://www.delgarm.com/sporta/fitness/233070-two-sports-simple-for-having-physical-and-ready-made

    I'm more than happy to find this site. I wanted to thank you for your time
    just for this wonderful read!! I definitely appreciated every part of it and i also
    have you bookmarked to look at new stuff on your site.

    April 9, 2021 at 12:28 | Report abuse | Reply
  37. dabwood carts

    It's actually a nice and useful piece of information. I'm
    happy that you simply shared this helpful info with
    us. Please stay us up to date like this. Thanks for sharing.

    April 9, 2021 at 12:41 | Report abuse | Reply
  38. AbgcEncox

    https://thesiswritingtob.com/ – thesiswritingtob.com thesis for phd thesiswritingtob.com thesis search

    April 9, 2021 at 20:25 | Report abuse | Reply
  39. http://acva2010.cs.drexel.edu/forum/index.php?u=/topic/9692/

    This is very interesting, You're a very skilled blogger.
    I've joined your rss feed and look forward to seeking more of your fantastic post.

    Also, I have shared your website in my social networks!

    April 10, 2021 at 08:17 | Report abuse | Reply
  40. http://euryka.rdi.uoc.edu/forums/user/Elina-Rosa/

    Hurrah! After all I got a web site from where I be able to genuinely take helpful facts concerning my study and knowledge.

    April 10, 2021 at 10:29 | Report abuse | Reply
  41. buy lsd tabs online

    After I initially left a comment I appear to have clicked the -Notify me when new comments are added- checkbox
    and from now on each time a comment is added I get four emails with the exact same comment.

    There has to be a way you can remove me from that service?
    Appreciate it!

    April 10, 2021 at 12:05 | Report abuse | Reply
  42. online sex cam chat

    I'm live on webcam now! Come & join me! xx

    April 11, 2021 at 03:07 | Report abuse | Reply
  43. free webcam sex chat

    I already beat the game and I'm almost done with the dex so I've just been trying to complete the shiny dex.
    Me and my buddy have a 20$ bet on if I'll complete it.

    April 11, 2021 at 19:36 | Report abuse | Reply
  44. alprostadil injection online

    alprostadil injection demonstration video https://alprostadildrugs.com/ iilegal sales of alprostadil

    April 12, 2021 at 12:09 | Report abuse | Reply
  45. zithromax 500

    can zithromax be used for uti https://zithromaxes.com/ zithromax 500 mg

    April 12, 2021 at 21:53 | Report abuse | Reply
  46. nudecamsites.Com

    Apparently there has been a viral tik tok about findom and now we're flooded with underage, unaware and absolutely outrageous girls thinking
    that findom is not sex work, but snapping fingers
    in order to get free stuffs.

    Well, technically it's both to me...but you get the point

    April 13, 2021 at 00:29 | Report abuse | Reply
  47. chattrube

    Why did twitter decide that people want what other like on their timeline?

    I don't want to see half naked girls and I'm 100% certain people don't want to see
    all the tweets I like related to Animal Crossing.

    April 13, 2021 at 15:00 | Report abuse | Reply
  48. canadian pharmacies ed pills

    canadian pills online https://canadapillstorex.com/ average perscription pills taken by 65 year old canadian?

    April 13, 2021 at 16:25 | Report abuse | Reply
  49. caranddriver

    always i used to read smaller posts which also clear their motive, and that is also
    happening with this article which I am reading here.

    My web-site – caranddriver

    April 14, 2021 at 11:13 | Report abuse | Reply
  50. rent a santa

    Hi there I am so delighted I found your weblog, I really found you
    by accident, while I was researching on Yahoo for something else,
    Anyhow I am here now and would just like to say thank you
    for a incredible post and a all round thrilling blog (I also love the theme/design), I don't have time to go through it all at
    the moment but I have saved it and also added in your RSS feeds, so when I have time I will be back to read a lot more, Please
    do keep up the great job.

    April 15, 2021 at 04:59 | Report abuse | Reply
1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 18 19 20 21 22 23 24 25

Leave a Reply to Mercedes Winnebago Sprinter Repair


CNN welcomes a lively and courteous discussion as long as you follow the Rules of Conduct set forth in our Terms of Service. Comments are not pre-screened before they post. You agree that anything you post may be used, along with your name and profile picture, in accordance with our Privacy Policy and the license you have granted pursuant to our Terms of Service.

About this blog

Get a behind-the-scenes look at the latest stories from CNN Chief Medical Correspondent, Dr. Sanjay Gupta, Senior Medical Correspondent Elizabeth Cohen and the CNN Medical Unit producers. They'll share news and views on health and medical trends - info that will help you take better care of yourself and the people you love.