When I first heard the term ‘Engine 2’ Diet, I immediately thought of fire engines and big, burly firemen and lots of beefcake. I mean beef. Sorry, the mind wanders at times.
At any rate, I was quite surprised to see that the Engine 2 Diet is a plant based diet, in other words no beef or meat of any kind.
The Engine 2 Diet was created by firefighter Rip Esselstyn to assist members of his Austin, Texas fire department to get back into shape. Vegetarians don’t normally impress me much, as I see a lot of vegetarian junk food being eaten. Coke and fries may not have meat, but that is not a meal!
But this is different in that it is whole foods based (no processed junk) and also low fat. Dieters are encouraged to cut out vegetable oils and anything that has more than 2.5 grams of fat per 100 calories.
There are two phases of the program, you can do the ‘firefighter’ version and go all in, or you can do the ‘fire cadet’ version and ease into this new way of eating. Either way, the dieter is encouraged to have their bloodwork checked and go on their 28 day challenge and then recheck the bloodwork.
Pros and Cons of The Engine 2 Diet
A low fat, plant based diet can lower cholesterol and prevent diabetes and heart disease
This is not a weigh & measure diet (but certain foods are off the menu.)
Promotes a long term way of eating for the whole family as opposed to a diet.
Unless you are really committed to a vegan or vegetarian lifestyle, this is hard to stick to.
Might be too low fat to stave off hunger
Interestingly, my own son has been a vegetarian for 7 years and he is strong and healthy. He is an air cadet and goes on weekend survival trips and just does not eat meat for ethical reasons. I could definitely see him advocating The Engine 2 Diet!
The book outlines the 28 Day Challenge and has many recipes. There are also some online resources out there on Facebook and Pinterest to keep you motivated.