Review: Dean Ornish's 'The Spectrum'
What It Is
Dean Ornish, MD, is known around the world as the pioneer whose research
heart disease could be reversed through a strict low-fat, low-sodium
vegetarian diet and healthy lifestyle. His latest book, The
Spectrum, is a lifestyle and diet program that can be tailored to suit
almost everyone. Whether you want to reduce your risk of
lose weight, or maintain your waistline, you figure out where you fit on
the spectrum, (hence the book title) and make changes accordingly. Along with
eating more nutritious foods, The Spectrum lifestyle plan also calls for
exercise, stress reduction,
The Spectrum has no rules, no forbidden foods, no guilt -- just a
blueprint for determining where you fall on the continuum, and encouragement to
make healthful changes.
"Diets don't work" has been a mantra of many dietitians for years,
and that's why The Spectrum works. While sticking to a "diet"
can be difficult, a gradual approach to healthier lifestyle choices is much
more doable in the long run.
The Spectrum is meant to be personalized to your own genes, needs,
and preferences. If your goal is to lower your
blood pressure, you choose foods closer to the most healthful end of the
spectrum, do it for about a month, then get your blood pressure checked and
re-evaluate. Trial and error will help you figure out where on the spectrum you
need to be. But the further you move toward the healthier end, the more likely
you are to look and feel better.
Ornish realizes that pleasure works better than guilt as a motivator, and
has built a sustainable program using the joy that comes from feeling and
looking better -- not fear of dying.
A bonus DVD on guided meditations by Anne Ornish (Dean Ornish's wife) is
included with the book.