J. Morris Hicks, trying to make healthy eating easy, fun, delicious and powerful in so many ways.

Eating 4Leaf in a Toxic World

Not being much of a cook myself, we did not include any recipes in our book. But we knew that people would need them, so we’re bringing them to you here. For the latest in 4Leaf recipes, take a look at the dropdown list under the “Recipes” tab at:

While there, take a look around the site as we’ve virtually transformed it during the last six months. You will also appreciate the meal planning and other helpful tools under the new “Go 4Leaf” tab.

For tips on tweaking traditional recipes to make them healthier, continue reading…

Meal Engineering 101 — turning average meals into great meals

As you begin to embrace the concept of taking charge of your health by maximizing your daily intake of the health promoting whole plant foods, you will soon learn that the vast majority of the menu meals (and recipe meals) come up way short when you compute the percent of their calories from whole plants.

Our target here on the 4Leaf Program is 80% — we try to derive at least 80% of our daily calories from whole plants – in nature’s package. We call the process meal engineering — simple, easy, fun and capable of doing some great things for your health.

The process oftentimes begins with a fairly decent meal and then turning it into something great. Years ago, I noticed an attractive dish on our yacht club menu called Tiger Shrimp with grains, seaweed, and a medley of vegetables.

My meal engineering process was simple as I said to the waiter, “I’ll have the Tiger Shrimp, hold the shrimp, double up on the grains, vegetables and seaweed…and just have the chef adjust the price accordingly.” After years of eating this way at my club, they now have the following entree on the printed menu, priced at $15, well below ALL the other entrees:

The Hicks Special

a selection of whole grains & fresh vegetables

Like to save money? My “engineered” meal at most restaurants turns out to be about half the price of the other entrees. And the meal usually looks great and tastes great — often prompting the person next to me at the bar to say, “I’m gonna have what he’s having.”

What about recipes? Like menu items, most fall way short on calories from whole plants — even many of the ones in vegetarian or vegan cookbooks. But they are easy to re-engineer. As we run across great looking recipes – with pictures; we will share them with you here. A few examples are posted below.

For vibrant health; whole plants, in nature’s package, are highly recommended – like this Adirondack Breakfast

Before we posted them, we reviewed the ingredients and estimated their score on our proprietary “4Leaf” system.  In our system, a “3-Leaf meal” derives over 60% of its calories from whole plants – in nature’s package. For the “4Leaf” level, that kicks in at 80%. This is compared to less than 10% for the typical western diet.

Most published recipes contain some oil or cheese, while we recommend none. All oil is 100% fat and is not recommended.  Ann Esselstyn says you can stir-fry or cook in ANY liquid, including wine or beer. Note that anything posted here will be cholesterol free and we recommend NO added salt or sugar for any of the dishes.

Finally, here are two links to new pages on our 4Leaf website that you might find helpful: 4Leaf Meal Planning and 4Leaf Kitchen & Shopping.

The following five books and one DVD can be purchased on Amazon for a grand total of less than $60—and will enable you to understand the overwhelming challenges we face—along with the single most-powerful solution of all.

Six-Pack from Hicks—for health, hope & harmony on planet Earth

  1. Healthy Eating, Healthy WorldThe “big picture” about food (our book)
  2. A life changer for millions, including James Cameron. Forks Over Knives DVD 
  3. An essential scientific resource: The China Study by Dr. T. Colin Campbell; the primary book that influenced Bill Clinton to adopt a whole food, plant-based diet.
  4. What have we done to our planet? Full Planet, Empty Plates by Lester Brown
  5. A horrifying wake-up call for leaders. TEN BILLION by Dr. Stephen Emmott
  6. Food choices are the primary cause of our environmental problems, yet our world leaders, scientists & experts are Comfortably Unawareby Richard Oppenlander.

Why should we be eating mostly plants? The “big picture” in 4 minutes.

Want to find out how healthy your family is eating? Take our free 4Leaf Survey. It takes 2 or 3 minutes and you can score it yourself. After taking the survey, please give me your feedback as it will be helpful in the development of our future 4Leaf app for smartphones. Send feedback to

International. We’re now reaching people in over 100 countries. Follow us on Facebook and Twitter or get daily blog notices by “following” us in the top of the right-hand column. For occasional updates, join our periodic mailing list.

J. Morris Hicks, working daily to promote health, hope and harmony on planet Earth.

To order more of my favorite books—visit our online BookStore now

Got a question? Let me hear from you at Or give me a call on my cell at 917-399-9700.

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—J. Morris Hicks, board member since 2012; click banner for more info:

Nutrition Certificate

2 Responses to Recipes

  1. Ben says:

    First of all thank you for posting all of this wonderful, eye opening information. My wife and I are now fully set on a plant based diet thanks to your efforts and the recipes are very helpful and great tasting. A suggestion that I am sure someone has already thought of and who knows may even be working on at this very moment is the creation of an ingredient/food app. While there are plenty of apps for Vegan this and that, it is hard to know which ingredients are not only vegan, but shall we say “Forks over Knives” friendly. While out shopping it would be immensely helpful to pull up the app enter the food or ingredient and get a thumbs up or a thumbs down. You could even have a details link for more information. I know it is a lot of work and trust me I would do it if I had the know-how, and most importantly the time, but alas I am only a convert and a mathematician.

  2. Stephanie says:

    Thank you for the link to the quinoa recipes. I especially love red quinoa and I am excited to have new ways to use it. I found out earlier today that you are speaking here next month. Can’t wait!

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