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      Get "Waisted"

      A ccording to the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, an estimated two billion people live on a meat-based diet. In addition, Americans spend more than $50 billion on diet products.

      Dr. Mary Clifton, author of a plant-based diet cookbook, traveled to Northern Michigan University Wednesday to talk about these numbers and educate students on what they should be eating to maintain a healthy lifestyle.

      Plant-based diets with whole foods are what Dr. Mary Clifton says led her to success in the world of food and dieting.

      Dr. Mary did a presentation Wednesday for NMU, promoting her new cookbook, Waisting Away: How to joyfully lose weight and supercharge your life.

      "A lot of my friends are gluten-free now, so it's nice to be more educated so when people come over, you can cook gluten-free or dairy-free, and it's just healthy and better for you," said NMU student, Marah Dempsey.

      Dr. Mary is an internal medicine specialist with 17 years experience. But a routine physical six years ago turned into a wake-up call.

      Dr. Mary was diagnosed with pre-diabetes and elevated cholesterol. She researched pharmaceutical options and decided to modify her diet instead.

      "I personally reversed my own disease with diet, and I've reversed disease on two or three thousand of my private patients, but with this book and with these talks, I have the potential to help thousands more," said Dr. Mary Clifton.

      NMU has decided to adopt Dr. Mary's dietary ways by providing students with more plant-based, rather than meat-based, options for mealtimes.

      After the presentation, recipes from the cookbook were brought out for tasting, so everyone could try for themselves.

      Tips and recipes were shared by local good-health businesses as well, such as the Marquette Food Co-op.

      "I'm definitely thirsty for more knowledge. She answered questions fairly well and made it so I want to learn more," said NMU's Menu Development and Point of Sales, Sean Murray.

      Dr. Mary's cookbook is on sale at Snowbound Books and the Food Co-op in Marquette, and online.