My recent trip started in Santa Rosa, California, where I spent one month at the True North Health Center, learning to keep to a strict SOS vegan diet: no Salt, no Oil, no Sugar, and no animal products (meat, fish or fowl, eggs or dairy). Just vegetables and fruit, and for starch, potatoes, rice, and other grains.

I went there to get rid of my high blood pressure. I have succeeded in the past with this diet, also losing lots of weight, but each time, I eventually went back to my bad habits. This time, I was planning to become “addicted” to this diet.

From there, I went to Moscow. Instead of flying from San Francisco to Los Angeles and then taking a direct flight to Moscow on the Russian airline, this time I flew to Houston and took Singapore Airlines to Moscow. The flight was uneventful. It took longer to get there, but the seats on Singapore Airlines are wider and the service is impeccable.

I was there for one week, spending long days leading more than thirty Russian managers through a problem-solving session, communicating in Russian by using a simultaneous translator.

Afterward, I flew to Mexico, to the Adizes conference in Guadalajara. Now, this is not a simple trip. I had just flown from the American continent, and had to return there only a week later. You would expect that my jet lag would be severe, right? But this time, for the first time in my life (and I have been flying regularly for forty years), I had no jet lag. I arrived in Mexico and went to work right away.

I also slept very well for eight hours each night. Usually with jet lag, you sleep badly, waking up every two to three hours, and you are disoriented for several days.

I wondered what had made the difference. Was it the comfort of the Singapore Airlines seating?

After a week working every day at the convention in Guadalajara, I flew on to Monterrey, Mexico, to work with a multinational billion-dollar company. Now I had thirty Mexican executives whose problems I was helping to solve, for which I had to make the transition to communicating in Spanish.

More work. More stress. Still not tired. Still full of energy. What was going on?

When I finished up in Monterey, I flew to New Delhi, India. This was a long trip. First I flew to Houston, Texas, waited a few hours there, then took another flight to Newark, New Jersey. After waiting some more hours, I boarded the thirteen-hour flight to India.

I should have been half dead by then, right? Not at all. I was still full of energy; I was ready to work immediately upon landing, and slept a full eight hours.

What the heck is going on, I wondered. Then I realized: It is the diet! It’s eating vegetables, lots of green vegetables.

Wow!!! If you ask the man in the street what gives you more energy, meat or vegetables, the answer would be “meat.” People expect meat to create more energy because it has more concentrated calories than vegetables. But if you think like a businessman, you’ll realize that what counts is not just revenues but also profits, which means you must take costs into account.

This is the same principle: Meat gives you lots of energy, granted, but consider how much energy it consumes being processed and digested. What is left for you to use? Very, very little. That is why, after a heavy meat-based meal, you feel sleepy.

Vegetables, on the other hand, have few calories, but also consume very few calories in the digestion process, leaving lots of energy that you can use.

Whoa! What a discovery! I fly more than 200 days a year across multi time zones, rarely staying in one time zone for more than few days. I have been chronically tired for as long as I can remember. And now, at age 73, I have found the spring of youth, the source of energy. Hello, everyone! It is vegetables! With no dressing, no oil, no salt, no sugar, and no animal products.

Is the diet easy to sustain? The first twenty-one days are very difficult; to be honest, it’s like purgatory. But after those three weeks, when your taste buds have adjusted, you find heaven. The food tastes delicious; there is nothing more tasty than the true taste of nature.

But watch it: If you take one bite of any of the forbidden foods, you’ll go straight back to purgatory for another twenty-one days.

I wish you all well and hope you find this blog helpful.

Sincerely,

Dr. Ichak Kalderon Adizes