My Clean Bill of Health

I went to see the doctor today for my scheduled annual checkup.

My blood was taken a couple of weeks ago and the results had come back in. I’ve been feeling healthy lately and hoped my results reflected how great I felt. Before the doctor came into the room, the nurse weighed me and my weight was perfect—smack dab in the middle of the ‘normal’ range on the BMI chart on the wall next to me. Then she took my blood pressure and commented, “Wow. You have the blood pressure of a teenager!”

A few minutes later, the doctor came in with my chart and informed me that my cholesterol levels were in an above optimal range. He said my bad cholesterol, LDL was very low and my good cholesterol, HDL was very high. As he went on with the results he said that my liver and kidneys were good and my hormone levels were perfectly balanced. “In other words, you have a clean bill of health,” he said.

The doctor was impressed by the numbers on my test results and said they were the best he’d seen in a while. “What are you doing?” he asked. I told him how I eat – oatmeal for breakfast nearly every morning with a little sugar and a bit of butter. For lunch I usually have a chunk of whole grain bread with some soup or a sandwich made with whole grain bread if I’m on the go. Dinner varies, but consists of more whole grains, and vegetables with meat used as a ‘garnish’ rather than the main course.

I explained the basics of The Benjamin Franklin Diet where I keep my meals small–no larger than one pint in volume and I try to get about 75% of my daily calories from complex carbohydrates, mainly in the form of whole grains and vegetables. Then I have small amounts of protein and  a little fat. I admitted that I sometimes eat sweets and occasionally have a glass of red wine, but always in moderation.

The doctor was intrigued. He said that so many of his patients are sick and overweight—many of them have diabetes. “They all want a ‘magic pill’ to make it go away,” he said with a sad shake of his head.

We talked about how it takes work and vigilance just to stay normal. I know it’s that way for me. I have to get out and exercise every day, whether I feel like it or not. More importantly, I have to watch what I eat and practice temperance to avoid overeating. But those are small sacrifices in the big picture.

When I discovered the Benjamin Franklin Diet, I was looking for a road to long-term good health. Now that the test results are in, I know I’m headed the right way to health and longevity.

Kelly Wright