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Excerpt: 'The Maker's Diet'



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In The Maker's Diet, Jordan Rubin outlines a holistic approach to health that includes a biblically inspired diet rich in whole foods from organically grown resources.

Here is an excerpt from the book: Chapter 7: Seven Victims Find Victory Disappointment in modern conventional medicine is the hard reality experienced by millions of Americans. Some maintain they were lied to and even discarded by healthcare systems and providers. Others simply exhausted all of their options in a search for health that was forever lost to disease, accidents, or nutrition-related health problems.

While personal testimonies cannot take the place of scientifically controlled studies or independent research, neither should they be ignored or set aside. They are a vital part of the process of scientific inquiry and discovery.

I have selected seven people who experienced significant results on the Maker's Diet. They represent a cross-section of people who first sought help through standard medical healthcare without success and were desperate to recover their health, as God intended them to enjoy. Some had been disappointed with the conventional and alternative medical community. Others received life-saving procedures but discovered that to regain their total health required more than was available from the conventional medical system. Suffering the "System" Let me affirm again that I understand that most doctors, nurses, and other healthcare providers are sincere, highly gifted, and dedicated in their work. However, they are part of a larger healthcare system in this country that is motivated by goals that may not have the public's best interest at heart. Some for-profit health maintenance organizations (HMOs), for instance, have won nationwide disdain for their tendency to maximize profits while minimizing healthcare services and expenditures to protect those profits.1 Some hospitals and medical clinics, largely underwritten by private insurance and Medicare, are quickly earning the same questionable reputation. Far too often, government bureaucrats and insurance underwriters, along with pharmaceutical companies, are influencing key medical treatment decisions, rather than the patients and their healthcare providers.

Since Medicare and most insurance companies refuse to pay for many advanced diagnostic tests or any treatment not listed as a standard medical procedure, many doctors simply follow the status quo. They avoid many proven alternatives, including virtually everything in the realm of proper nutrition and genuine health maintenance. A typical scenario The story is all too familiar, beginning with the long delays in crowded waiting rooms packed with sick people who are sneezing, coughing, and hacking uncontrollably. After being whisked into an antiseptic white room, you wait another thirty minutes before seeing the doctor, who finally appears for a rushed ninety-second interview and to prescribe medications. The result is predictable: you take your prescription with you on the way out past the small receptionist window, and then you make the weary run to your friendly hometown pharmacist for the promised "cure in a bottle."

Add to that the ever-increasing problems of incorrect prescribing, overprescribing of antibiotics, missed diagnoses, late diagnoses, and understaffed and underpaid hospital workers existing in a fog of fatigue, often working in overcrowded conditions in buildings housing a host of deadly microbes, communicable diseases, and infectious staph infestations. Taken together, you have a prescription for disaster! As my mother says, "The worst place for a sick person to be is in the hospital." Each of the individuals introduced below came to me in desperation after every other medical promise had failed. Feeling helpless and almost hopeless, they agreed to try the Maker's Diet. The first testimonial is from my grandmother, which I'm telling from my viewpoint with her permission. Rose Menlowe "Jordan, are you OK? Can I get you anything? Do you need your IV changed?" The voice was very familiar to me. I heard that voice night after night as I came in and out of delirium in the hospital - it was the loving voice of Rose, my tough, full-of-life, Jewish grandmother.

This matriarchal champion stood by me in my battle to survive Crohn's disease. Just three years after my full recovery, as I was enjoying life again and launching into my life's mission in addition to planning my wedding, which was only three months away, Grandma Rose found herself in a life-and-death battle with cancer. According to her doctor, things weren't looking good.

In late spring of 1999, she began experiencing excruciating stomach pain and threw up constantly. Laboratory tests conducted in Florida kept coming back normal, and doctors wrote it off as a tough virus.

Grandma Rose went to Atlanta for a visit with my aunt and uncle but almost immediately began feeling even worse. She had to be lifted out of bed and helped in and out of the shower. Days turned into weeks of pain and nausea, difficulty in keeping food down, dry heaves, and excruciating abdominal pain.

The pain became so unbearable that Grandma fell into despair. She even asked my uncle to give her pills so she could "end it all." When he refused, she asked to be taken to the emergency room. Desperate to end the pain, she agreed to follow the gut instinct of a surgeon she had never met. He was certain something dangerous was going on that could only be found through exploratory surgery. Facing the facts My mother heard about it and was furious. (She shares the natural distrust of "knife-happy" surgeons common to many in the natural health community.) But this time the doctor was right. When Grandma emerged from the anesthesia, the surgeon confirmed what she secretly suspected - she was dying.

He had found multiple malignancies hidden beneath the larger internal organs (which helps explain why they escaped detection earlier). The malignancies included a goblet cell carcinoid in her appendix and stage IV ovarian cancer that had spread to her lymph nodes and portions of her small and large intestines. Ovarian cancer cells were also found in the pleural fluid (located in the cavity surrounding the lungs).

The surgeon removed all of the cancer he found, removing both ovaries, the appendix, some of the lymph nodes, and portions of the small and large intestines. But the ovarian malignancy was extremely advanced, and the cancer had spread to other sites.

Since Grandma Rose was in her late seventies and in a weakened state, chemotherapy and radiation were out of the question. The doctor told Rose she had two years to live at most. He told her family it was closer to six months - if that long.

Grandma Rose called me and said, "Jordan, you were my first grandchild. I want to do something so I might live to see you married. Maybe you can help me. Maybe you can find something for me." I had never heard her voice sound so weak before.

As we talked, I realized just how similar her trial was to my own. Her condition was extremely painful, and no one seemed to believe her description of the symptoms at first. She didn't know what was wrong, and the unrelenting suffering had stolen her hope - and her smile. (My aunt and uncle used to sneak my baby cousin Ethan past the hospital staff to visit Grandma Rose in her room - he was the only one who could get a smile out of her.) Immediately after her surgery, my grandmother became very depressed, sensing that she was going to die. "I was praying that I would live long enough to go to your wedding," she confided to me later.

She had lost thirty pounds, felt terrible, and had lost her will to live - except for one remaining hope she really wanted to somehow attend my wedding in Florida just a few months away. A painful challenge Though the stakes were almost unbearable, I had no choice but to meet the challenge of my grandmother's terminal illness. All of her conventional medical options were exhausted.

I understood that I had to find a way to strengthen Grandma's immune system to suppress her cancer cells and promote healthy cells. She needed more than an increase in white blood cells and cytokines in her body - these components needed to be highly activated as well.

Tumor cells secrete "transforming growth factor-beta" (TGF-b), which renders immune cells inactive or ineffectual-even in large numbers. This factor also inhibits proliferation of T-cells, reduces the cancer cell-killing power of tumor necrosis factor-alpha, and inhibits the ability of macrophages, our immune system's first line of defense, to destroy invaders. The result: the body believes its defense system is effectively attacking cancer cells when it isn't.

In addition to putting Grandma on the Maker's Diet, my research led me to particular polysaccharide peptides or glycoproteins that enhance macrophage and natural killer cell production and efficacy. They are found in greatest abundance in edible fungi and germinated grains and seeds. These compounds enhance production of cytokines, which facilitate cell-to-cell communication and optimize immune function. I had a hunch that these glyconutrients might overcome some of the deceptive methods of TGF-b. Glyconutrient compounds were abundant in most primitive diets, but they are virtually absent from modern Western diets heavy in refined foods. Edible mushrooms are the richest source of these compounds (the healing powers of mushrooms have been known for more than five thousand years). However, positive research findings on the medicinal powers of mushrooms have become prominent in research literature only in the last twenty years.2 Several varieties (not including the popular button mushroom from the grocery store) offer immunomodulatory, lipid-lowering, antitumor, and other beneficial or therapeutic health effects without any significant toxicity.3 These benefits are so promising that some of the most potent anticancer drugs under development by pharmaceutical scientists are based on the glyconutrient compounds found in these mushrooms.

Mushrooms are too fibrous and difficult for the body to easily break down, so I had to overcome this problem if I hoped to tap into the healing powers of these natural fungi. Grandma Rose needed an effective delivery system to help her benefit from the prototype formula I had prepared for her.

In the process of my own healing from Crohn's disease, I had pioneered the use of a fermentation process using more than fourteen species of homeostatic soil organisms and other lactic-acid producing microorganisms. I used this probiotic "starter" to ferment or "predigest" the ten mushrooms, aloe vera, and the herb cat's claw in the formula and unlock the active ingredients.

By applying what I now call the "Poten-Zyme" process, Grandma Rose's body was able to utilize all of the "body ready" phytochemicals and phytonutrients available in my herb and mushroom compound without placing stress on the digestive tract. My grandmother began taking my prototype formula, combined with the Maker's Diet, immediately following her surgery.

Rose: blooming again! "Not only did I gain my weight back," Grandma Rose says, "but my energy level and physical appearance improved to the point that I feel and look better than I can recall in the last thirty years! My digestion improved dramatically. But most importantly, according to my regular follow-up CAT scans, I am cancer free! Even the fatty liver that I developed (probably due to metabolic imbalance) is gone now." Only three months after radical abdominal surgery, Grandma Rose attended my wedding. She was still moving slowly at that time, but she was able to dance with me to a song I had recorded and that I sang especially for her. What a special victory it was for us.

On Labor Day 2001, Grandma Rose described her victorious battle with cancer before the Cancer Control Society's twenty-sixth annual convention in Universal City, California. "Four years after the discovery of my cancer, my CAT scans show no evidence of cancer. My energy levels are that of a twenty-year-old. With help from my grandson, I hope to see my great-grandchildren grow up." She received a standing ovation. Bob N. On September 26, 2002, I was given the life-changing news that I had stage III lymphoma cancer. Immediately, I started researching the available treatments and diet changes that would give me the best chance for a quality life and help me live the longest possible amount of time.

After consulting with my doctor and praying about what God wanted me to do, I chose to go with chemotherapy. After receiving five treatments, my hair fell out, and I was fighting nausea and fatigue. When my son called to tell me about Jordan Rubin's incredible story and his health program called the Maker's Diet, I immediately jumped on a plane and flew down to West Palm Beach to get the facts "straight from the horse's mouth." After meeting with Jordan personally and being introduced to the Maker's Diet, I decided to continue chemotherapy while following the diet, food supplement, and lifestyle program very diligently.

My oncologist warned that after my next series of treatments for stage III lymphoma cancer I would feel extremely weak and nauseated ... much more than the initial five treatments.

On November 8, my doctor insisted that I go on disability because my energy level and blood count would drastically drop in the next few weeks.

On November 28, I began the Maker's Diet, including the food supplements recommended to me. I also followed Dr. Rubin's suggestion to observe a seven-day juice fast to detoxify and cleanse my system. I was sixty-five pounds overweight and had little energy to do anything at the time.

On December 3, I took my next chemotherapy treatment and waited for my energy level to hit the bottom as predicted. To my delight and surprise, the nausea and fatigue were almost nonexistent! According to the doctor, my blood counts never dropped. What a difference the diet change and food supplements made! The nurses at the doctor's office asked how I was feeling-they couldn't believe I was feeling so good! I told them about the Maker's Diet, and they noted it on my chart. On December 23, I received the toughest chemotherapy treatment yet (five separate drugs), and the results were the same-very little side effects. My son and his family flew up to Tennessee on Christmas Day to visit with us. Would you believe that we had nine people in the house for one week and that I did the grocery shopping for everyone, cooked most of the meals, and entertained four grandchildren (all under five years of age)? Where did I get the energy I wasn't supposed to have? I am convinced I owe it to the Maker's Diet.

On January 8, I stopped the program for about three days, just to see how I would do. Without the nutrients from the Maker's Diet, I found myself extremely weak and hardly able to get up off the couch. I started back on the program again on January 12 and regained my strength the next day! That convinced me more than ever that the Maker's Diet was what made the difference!

"The lymph nodes have shrunk back to normal, and there is no sign of cancer anywhere!" (Bob's doctor)

On January 15, 2003, my cancer was restaged by CAT and PET scans. The doctor, who is normally very low key, came bouncing energetically into the examination room and shouted, "This is incredible. In my fifteen years of practice, this is the best lymphoma scan report I have ever seen. The lymph nodes have shrunk back to normal, and there is no sign of cancer anywhere!"

My wife and I were overcome with joy and excitement at the awesome report and answer to so many prayers. Not only was I progressing better than anyone expected, but also I had lost twenty-five pounds and was feeling better than I had in years! Now that my cancer is in remission, I will continue following the Maker's Diet, expecting it to keep the cancer away for good! Doug M. My journey began when I decided to make one last-ditch desperation attempt to correct a deteriorating physical condition that had plagued me for five long years. During the winter of 1998, I experienced recurring symptoms of heartburn that rapidly progressed into a chronic acid reflux condition. I was unable to digest my food (regardless of what I ate) without bringing it back up repeatedly. This took place over and over for forty-five minutes to an hour after each meal.

This painful condition began to wreak havoc on me physically, emotionally, and socially, as my eating habits became increasingly erratic. I often ate in seclusion to avoid any embarrassment associated with this condition, which I later learned was called GERD (gastroesophageal reflux disease).

I did some research and learned that GERD is a generic term applied to any common acid reflux or heartburn condition. I soon learned that my particular case of GERD was anything but common when I went to my doctor seeking a diagnosis and a conventional medical remedy. That doctor's visit began an eighteen-month barrage of seemingly endless paperwork and referrals as I bounced from one "specialist" to the next within my HMO health insurance plan. After running a number of diagnostic procedures (upper GI series, upper endoscopy, stomach-emptying study, manometry tests, etc.), my gastroenterologist finally determined that I had a severe case of GERD. It was complicated by a gaping hiatal hernia, a duodenal ulcer, and an abnormally slow-emptying stomach, which emptied at a rate 75 percent slower than normal for a male my age. The prognosis wasn't good. These complications, combined with the substantial reflux I was experiencing, made it very difficult to treat my GERD symptoms. It seemed that each health practitioner I sought for medical advice told me that GERD symptoms as complex and severe as mine were the leading cause of esophageal cancer. I was ready to exhaust every effort to combat this disorder.

So began a three-year search during which I tried three conventional prescription remedies, two mail-order prescriptions from Canada (not approved yet in the U.S.), and one prescription from Europe. Each "remedy" provided a host of side effects such as constant nausea, sleeplessness, and headaches-but none of them alleviated the reflux.

My desperation and hopelessness grew with each futile attempt at a cure. Finally, a specialist at the University of Miami Hospital told me my last remaining option was an uncommon surgical procedure called a Laparoscopic Nissen. It would require the removal of the upper third of my stomach so it could be tied around the bottom of my esophagus. I avoided this grisly procedure by ignoring my problem for the next two years. When I could no longer stand the constant burning sensation in my throat and the haunting fear of life-threatening throat cancer, I contacted the specialist.

One day in early December of 2002, I finally caved in and agreed to my doctor's constant plea that immediate Laparoscopic Nissen surgery was the only solution. Reluctantly, I scheduled a preoperative appointment with the hospital.

On the very same day that I scheduled my preoperative appointment, fate took a lucky turn. I just "happened" to share the details of my circumstances with a co-worker whom I really didn't know. That conversation became a life-altering moment. The guy's next sentence was, "Have you ever heard of a doctor named Jordan Rubin?" I said no without showing a shred of interest, and my attention faded even further when he described Dr. Rubin as some kind of holistic health practitioner. I thought, If conventional modern medicine can't provide an answer, what chance would a holistic approach provide? The co-worker was so persistent that he persuaded me to look at Jordan's Web site.

That is when I was introduced to Jordan's amazing personal chronicle of his own life-and-death battle with Crohn's disease. I felt a newfound inspiration budding inside me. I knew this could be my last opportunity to avoid being butchered like a guinea pig. What happened next was nothing short of miraculous.

I excitedly called the contact number on the Web site, and the customer service representative on the other end sounded strangely familiar. He was an old friend and co-worker of mine who was also a childhood friend of Jordan Rubin. He arranged a consultation for me with Dr. Rubin. Every day since this meeting has been nothing short of amazing.

The day I began the Maker's Diet was my last day with GERD!

Jordan's confidence impressed me immediately during my initial consultation. I distinctly remember the kind and determined look in his eyes as I described my symptoms and mentioned that I had already booked a preoperative appointment for esophageal surgery. His confidence radiated from what he had overcome personally, and he had an absolute belief in his program. Yet, all he said was, "If you're willing, I think I can help." The reassuring way he made this simple statement gave me a sense of optimism and hope I hadn't felt since my troubles began.

Jordan familiarized me with the Maker's Diet, recommending a dietary program and whole-food nutritional supplements, going to great lengths to describe the synergistic effect his program would have on my prevailing symptoms and on my overall health as well. This was extremely exciting to me because for months I had been experiencing a number of other symptoms that alarmed me. I was almost embarrassed to discuss these "other" symptoms with Jordan, fearing he would consider me to be some kind of hypochondriac. Yet, I felt I needed to make the most of this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity.

I went on to describe the strange malaise spells I'd get every three to four weeks that lasted two or three days. The achy, bone-tired lethargic feeling rendered me almost nonfunctional for days at a time. (I realize now that it may have been chronic fatigue syndrome.)

Surprisingly, Jordan was able to relate and empathize with everything I described to him because he had been down that road himself - and he had emerged triumphant. Our conversation that day marked a turning point for me. I knew I was on the right path, and I fervently began the Maker's Diet. I was unwaveringly determined to finally restore the most vital asset I possessed - my health.

I began the protocol on December 16, 2002, and - God is my witness - that was the last day I ever experienced GERD! I can still hardly believe it's true. I haven't had one iota of regurgitation from the very first dose of Omega-Zyme (a digestive enzyme product formulated by Dr. Rubin).

December 16 also marked the first day I began keeping a health/food journal to religiously document my progress by briefly describing how I feel every day and recording what I eat. The protocol Jordan put me on included Omega-Zyme, Primal Defense, RM-10, FYI, Springs of Life, Acid Defense, Perfect Food, Extra-Virgin Coconut Oil, Olde World Icelandic Cod Liver Oil, and lastly (yet most importantly) my strict adherence to the Maker's Diet.

Today I still have absolutely no sign of the GERD or any of the related heartburn symptoms, and my energy levels continue to even out and become more and more consistent with each passing day. There's really no way to appropriately thank someone who has given you so much of your life back and I don't exaggerate when I say that. However, there's one thing that I can do - I can simply pass along the miraculous results I've enjoyed with Jordan's program. And I pray that many of you who are suffering will read my story and hold on to the hope that your prayers can be answered, beginning with the belief in Jordan's simple statement, "If you're willing, I think I can help." Christian S. January 5, 2001 was a day that drastically altered the course of my life forever. It was a cool Florida winter day, with a temperature of 65 degrees, slightly overcast skies, and strong prevailing winds. And there I was, lying on the ground in agonizing pain. This can't be happening! I thought to myself.

Only split seconds earlier, while on patrol as a security guard for a luxury community, I was struck by a rather large SUV. The incident happened at lightning speed, but the moment seemed to last for an eternity.

Life throws a curve ball once in a while, and this was a doozy. I was on top of the world at the time. I had just ended my service with the United States Air Force and was looking forward to serving the community as a deputy sheriff in West Palm Beach, Florida. Even more exciting at the time, my amateur boxing career was on the verge of exploding. After the accident, my self-esteem hit a downward spiral, and I found comfort in a lot of things - but my favorite was food. I could no longer train, and my future plans just went up in flames. I couldn't get out of bed for weeks, plenty of time for me to get well acquainted with two very good friends of mine - Ben amp Jerry (ice cream). As time went on, so did the pounds. In two years I ballooned from a muscular six foot, 200-pound physique to a marshmallow body shape type weighing in at 270 pounds. I didn't even recognize the person I saw in the mirror.

The more depressed I felt, the more I ate. It was a vicious cycle I didn't know how to break. I kept my natural defense mechanism on the alert for any possible fat joke that came my way so I could beat people to the punch line and make the joke on myself before others had the chance. That was the way I handled the feeling of rejection from all of my fit and thin friends.

I tried other ways to lose weight, but as a former athlete, the only effective method I had ever known was working out. The two herniated disks in my lower back and my bum left knee, along with the additional weight gain, removed that exercise option. (Despite repeated attempts, problems with my insurance prevented me from getting the surgery I desperately needed.) The "decision" Life is all about decisions. This was one decision I had to make: Would I keep living in this overweight, achy, tired, and depressed body? Or would I take back the control of my health I had forfeited and decide to do something about it? I was introduced to a health program called the Maker's Diet shortly thereafter. At first I dismissed it as just another diet, but I couldn't get it out of my mind. Fed up with my predicament and facing my upcoming wedding, the choice was simple. I don't believe in coincidences; I believe God gave me the unique opportunity to follow the Maker's Diet. Just from the name I knew that God was in complete control and had heard my cries for help. If you are reading this today, it is not by coincidence; this diet may very well be your answer as well. Feeling good and back in the gym! I saw results immediately. Losing five pounds my first week only excited me and furthered the faith I had in the diet. The funny thing was that I thought that being on a diet meant limiting the amount of food I was eating. With the Maker's Diet, I felt as if I was eating more than I ever had before.

When I started the program, my back and knee were still bothering me, so I wasn't even able to exercise. After the second week, people started noticing and commenting on how good I was looking. Trust me, with my low self-esteem, I was sopping it up like a sponge in water.

The weight kept pouring off as I adhered to the diet and nutritional supplements, but my health wasn't the only thing that was improving. My self-worth was increasing as well. I woke up excited about life again, and I wasn't afraid to walk in front of the mirror without my shirt on. My knee and back pain decreased more and more over a period of time, and my energy level skyrocketed from where it was before. Within twelve weeks I had dropped forty pounds and was down to 230 pounds. Another fantastic result is that my back and knee pain has improved so much I am back in the gym and playing basketball. Simple Conclusion One by one, desperate people just like Rose, Bob, Christian, and Doug contact me for help. While I do not consider myself a miracle worker, I do have great confidence in my Teacher, affectionately called "the Great Physician," who heals all our diseases (Ps. 103:3). Nothing matches His wisdom concerning His creation, including the ideal human diet and natural treatments for our most common ailments.

Before you examine the "nuts and bolts" of the Maker's Diet, I wanted you to consider its effect on these people who were desperate for any glimmer of hope in their health situation - including my own grandmother, who prayed for just a few more months of life! They represent a great number of people who enjoy restored health today as a result of making the decision to try the Maker's Diet. In fact, just a few months before publication of this book, many of the staff members at our local church finished the Maker's Diet 40-Day Health Experience. They are looking and feeling better, and many are experiencing a level of health they never thought possible. Isn't God awesome!

I want to end this chapter with three of their "before" and "after" stories. JoAnn D. "Before" I am sick and tired of being sick and tired. I think that pretty well sums it up. I guess I have had minor health problems all my life, and I got used to them. As you get older, though, they seem to become more noticeable. All through my married life, my husband has had his share "in sickness" and very little "in health." I can't say they have been major issues, but they are enough for him to start his day with, "How are you feeling today?" I appreciate his love and concern, and I know he really wants to know. After thirty years he even measures the pause between the time he asks the question and the time it takes me to answer. My number one goal for this forty-day experience is to look like I feel so wonderful that my husband's first question every day is not, "How are you feeling today?"

An important goal is to spend more time with the Lord and really relax. Other goals are to not go to bed and wake up with a headache; my blood pressure to stabilize throughout the month; migraines to go away; nails to grow; and hair to quit falling out. "After" I am still in shock. I never thought I would win! I never win, and I won the biggest prize! WOW! Go figure, me, a winner!

Now let me tell you what I won- my health. I did reach my goal. I feel wonderful inside and out. I feel younger and more alive. I don't feel sick and tired all the time, and I find myself smiling more. I have been a PR person for quite sometime, and I found myself having to force myself to sound happy. Now it just comes bursting out. I guess now I will have to train myself to control it. As for my other goals:

1. Not to go to bed and wake up with a headache: the headaches have stopped. 2. For my blood pressure to stabilize throughout the forty days: I had one elevation, and it was not even "that" time of the month. (Speaking of "that" time of the month, we never knew it was coming. I had no BP elevations or mood swings, and it was a lighter, more normal flow.) 3. Migraines to go away: I did not have one the whole forty days! 4. Nails to grow: they did not grow healthy 5. Hair to quit falling out: still falling out, but then it started from blood pressure medication many years ago. I knew it would not stop falling out overnight. I have never guessed myself to be a selfish person, but I have to admit I did not think about what these forty days would do for my husband or our marriage. My husband has needed to lose weight for quite sometime, and I knew he would feel better once he did. I never gave thought to how "we" would feel.

My heart melted when he came home from work one night and announced, "I feel great!" He has lost a significant amount of weight (he started dieting in the middle of July) and knows he has more yet to lose. He is not depressed over that fact. He sees it as a challenge now and eagerly exercises and is careful to eat correctly (since beginning the Maker's Diet). He has not been tempted by candies or goodies at work. I am so proud and pleased for him. But I also think the Lord softened his heart to be open to this opportunity.

And the grand prize-that happened November 1, 2003. We were invited by a special couple to attend the fiftieth anniversary ball at our local Elk's club. I was wearing the evening gown I wore to our daughter's wedding rehearsal dinner. My husband was wearing the same white dinner jacket and tuxedo pants. I cannot remember my husband ever looking so handsome - nothing too tight, nothing uncomfortable. He looked at me and said, "You are looking real sexy!" And I felt it. I was so happy inside and out. I may have taken a little longer than most to feel well, but I sure do!

"You are looking real sexy!" sure outclasses "How are you feeling today?" As I stated earlier, all through my married life, my husband has had more than his share "in sickness" and very little "in health." I think that is about to change! Carolyn G. "Before" In 1994 I became very ill with mononucleosis, which I never seemed to recover from. I spent months at a time during the following two years taking antibiotics and penicillin. I eventually had a tonsillectomy done and saw some improvement, but never complete healing. I still suffer from fatigue on a daily basis. I never wake up refreshed and find it difficult to get through the day without enough energy. I also get sick very easily; if I am around someone who is ill, I am sure to get what they have.

I have also been diagnosed as having a spastic colon, now called IBS (irritable bowel syndrome), suffering from severe bloating, constipation, irregular bowel movements, distension, and cramping. This has been a chronic, difficult thing to deal with over the years.

A year ago I was engaged in a regimented exercise and eating routine with a personal trainer, which produced excellent results for a time. I toned up and ate only low-sodium and low-sugar foods. I was feeling well physically and had more energy during the day, but I knew it wasn't actually a program that would heal my body or that I could do long term. The food choices were extremely limited, and I lost the drive to put in the amount of time it took to be in that program.

Unfortunately, over the last year, I have become so busy with my job and master's degree course load that I have neglected my health greatly. I have doubled my dress size, going from a size 6 or 8 to a size 12 or 14. Currently, I am quite unhappy with my physical health. I feel unfit and unsatisfied, yet I haven't made sufficient time in my daily schedule to prioritize my health. I look forward to the forty days as a time set aside to concentrate on healing and learning how to eat well. I am specifically targeting my physical health, hoping to both lose weight and cleanse my bowels of any disease. I believe by faith that God is truly going to use the Maker's Diet to bring healing to my body. I hope to gain self-discipline in eating and exercising well, and I hope to make the Maker's Diet a priority in my life practices. "After" I cannot say enough about my journey through the Maker's Diet 40-Day Health Experience. I have been challenged and blessed beyond measure by my involvement. I have seen critical changes in my overall health, which I have been praying for desperately over the years.

I believe that I finally got some answers about what foods I need to avoid for optimal health. It is amazing how getting educated about proper nutrition - removing toxins, hormone-enhanced, chemically altered food, and introducing food in its natural form as our Maker created it-can change one's complete perspective about food and enhance well-being.

For the first time in my life I have begun to recognize how my body actually responds to foods not on the Maker's Diet. I had three difficult days where I ate foods off the diet, and each day I was able to see and feel the negative results of those choices within hours. My stomach cramped up and became distended. I got headaches and felt foggy and fatigued. It is almost like these foods are toxic to my body; my body wanted to repel them immediately. I am now certain that I am literally "allergic" to particular foods I had been eating on a frequent basis before starting this diet. My body just can't process them. I have more energy than before. Typically, I used to require a nap on both Saturday and Sunday afternoons to get myself ready physically for another week of labor. I can honestly tell you that I only took one nap on the whole diet! There were some days where I thought, I should lie down and rest, only to find that I was not tired! This is truly amazing for me. It has made me far more productive at work as well. I have an intense job researching and writing all day, and I have found that I concentrate better, process more quickly, and am more efficient. Much of the reason I am sure I have had more energy is that my sleep has been more restful. My gut and my brain are working together! The three or so times I ate food off the diet, I didn't sleep nearly as well... there is definitely a connection. I'm sure my bowels are being cleansed as well. This has been a huge prayer concern for me. I believe with all my heart that the Super Seed and Living Multi combined with the whole foods have helped my body learn how to absorb good bacteria and expel bad bacteria.

I've also found that my skin has become very clear and clean. This is the biggest area that I have gotten comments from others. They have noticed a glow in my skin and a reduction in tiny lines around my eyes. I attribute this to removing chemicals, hormones, and pesticides from my foods and from using the hygiene kit. I have not missed one single opportunity to use the hygiene system. It has changed my life. In the past I have always gotten sick from flying on a plane. I have had two round-trip flights since being on this diet, and I have not had a sniffle - let alone the ear infections and bronchial infections I typically get. I refuse to give up the hygiene system - it is a total jewel that I treasure. It has been wonderful to do this diet with my boyfriend. We have prayed about targeting particular areas such as diet before we commit in marriage. It has been wonderful to support one another, get educated together, and cook together. We've spent a lot more time at home because this diet has simplified our life perspective; it's been invaluable for us. He said to me, "We are starting a legacy of health for our family." And we have. I am excited to work with him as one to build a family on God's wisdom and provisions. Proverbs 24:3-4 says, "Through wisdom a house is built, and by understanding it is established; by knowledge the rooms are filled with all precious and pleasant treasures." God has provided us with this wisdom through the Maker's Diet.

There is so much to say about how the Maker's Diet has impacted me. I could write my own book! I am so thankful for the opportunity I've had to take part in this diet. It has changed my life forever. Kim V. "Before"

My incentive about getting serious about my weight problem has begun with the start of this diet. For the last several years, I have been at my heaviest weight ever. I was always active in high school and college, and since hitting my mid-thirties, I have not changed my diet. I wouldn't say I'm a bad eater. I don't snack a lot, and I drink lots of water. I just tend to eat two big meals a day, sometimes not even breakfast. Only within the last three weeks have I begun an exercise program. I have been a children's pastor for thirteen years, and it is a very rewarding and fulfilling ministry for me. But it does come with a lot of stress. I moved here two and a half years ago having no family and knowing only two people, and they have moved within this last year. It's been an adjustment for me - adjusting to the weather (I'm a Tennessee girl), people, and large church dynamics. That has had and still has an effect on my mental and emotional health, which I believe has affected my physical health. I do see how stress affects your weight. The only thing I feel I have going for me is my spiritual health, and as with everyone, during difficult times the enemy tries to use it against me.

From past experiences, I know how good I feel about myself when I am in shape. I do not feel good about my appearance now. I hide my weight very well. Plus, I am constantly tired when leaving work and sometimes have to work hard at making myself work out. But I am committed to that as I will be committed to the forty days of the Maker's Diet. My goal is that this will jump-start my metabolism, give me more energy, and change my lifestyle of eating habits. I don't just want this to be a forty-day fad and then go back to putting in the "old tapes." I'm ready for new tapes. I'm ready to start feeling good about myself again and having a body-a temple-to reflect a healthy image. I desire balance in the areas of physical, mental, spiritual, and emotional health. "After" Wow! It's been an unbelievable forty days! Words can only briefly touch on how I feel. As stated in my "before" essay, I was not liking the way my body looked, and that affected many areas in my life. But I can definitely say today that I feel like a new person.

I have been totally committed to this plan and faithfully working out three times a week. I have seen and felt a significant difference. My overall attitude is becoming healthier. I was determined to stick with the Maker's Diet even through the detox and occasional cravings for "bad" foods.

I gave up all caffeine, and I am only drinking water. I ate the foods that were recommended and came up with some new recipes. I have not spent this much time thinking about the foods to eat and preparing them as I have these last forty days. Now it has become part of my daily ritual - a habit. As I stated in my "before" essay, this is not going to be a forty-day only plan; my goal is to make it a lifestyle. My whole being - spiritual, mental, physical, and emotional - is healthier and happier. I'm beginning to see the in-shape Kim that I used to know years ago. I started out with a goal of losing a certain amount of weight, and I'm halfway there. For more information on the book, go to www.makersdiet.com Excerpted from The Maker's Diet by Jordan Rubin, copyright 2004.

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