Blogging this week from the collegiate trail

University of Kentucky today and Holy Cross on Wednesday

In a recent interview, I was asked this question by Gretchen Tseng of ChicVegan: In your wildest dreams, what will your life and the world look like in 5 years?

While the meat & dairy-laden Western diet will still be prevalent, many millions of people will have learned more about the health, environmental and other benefits of plant-based eating. Further, as the cost of energy and food continues to rise; more and more people will be choosing the cheaper, healthier and greener option of eating more plants.

As for me in 2017, I would like to be speaking on college campuses around the world at least ten times a month—sharing our message with the young people who will be the leaders of the “great food revolution of the 21st century.” Ever optimistic, J. Morris Hicks.

Optimistic? Why am I optimistic and why do I want to focus much of my effort on the young people? It’s because I have observed that bright young people get the message in our book very quickly and they usually begin to make positive changes in their diets  immediately. In our book, we reported that 18% of all college students in the USA describe themselves as vegetarian—this compares to a puny 3.2% of the nation as a whole. So, why is that?

It’s because the word is getting out there about the many compelling reasons for adopting a whole foods, plant-based diet. And the college kids are listening and they’re taking action. Two recent examples:

Dr. Shawn Lankton, my nephew and fellow 4Leaf health enthusiast

My nephew Shawn (27). While studying for his PhD at Georgia Tech six years ago, Shawn read Joel Fuhrman’s Eat to Live that I gave him—and stopped eating ALL animal products a few weeks later. Over the next few months, he lost twenty pounds that he didn’t even know he needed to lose. He has been eating at 4Leaf ever since and is now traveling the world out of New York, working with one of the most prominent consulting firms in the world.

My youngest friend in Stonington, Tim (29). Last summer, I shared a few sailing trips with Tim (a new member of our yacht club) and while sailing, we chatted about food and many other things. Even before reading our book, he then started trying some of the ideas that I shared with him. He now has our book on his iPhone (via iBooks), has lost 25 pounds (without trying), is eating 4Leaf for many of his meals and is still making improvements in his diet.

He has joined our 4Leaf Potluck Dinner Club in Stonington and is trying to learn how to cook. A scientist with Pfizer, he excitedly talks about the implications of the message in our book on the medical and pharmaceutical industry. He agrees that making drugs for food-borne illnesses is not a very gratifying career and he looks forward to being a part of the inevitable industry transformation to promoting health vs. just treating symptoms.

My lecture this evening at the University of Kentucky is entitled:

The “Big Picture”—How our food choices affect the promotion of health, hope and harmony on planet Earth

I will begin with a quote by a famous Kentuckian and UK graduate, Wendell Berry:

People are fed by the food industry, which pays no attention to health….and are treated by the health industry which pays no attention to food.

Toward the end of the lecture, which features much about the environmental damage caused by our rich Western diet, I include another thoughtful quote by Mr. Berry:

“Whether we and our politicians know it or not, Nature is party to all our deals and decisions…and she has more votes, a longer memory, and a sterner sense of justice than we do.”

Handy 5-piece take-charge-of-your-health kit—from

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 less than five 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

For help in your own quest to take charge of your health, visit our 4Leaf page and also enjoy some great recipes from Lisa’s 4Leaf Kitchen.

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, T. Colin Campbell Foundation

About J. Morris Hicks

A former strategic management consultant and senior corporate executive with Ralph Lauren in New York, J. Morris Hicks has always focused on the "big picture" when analyzing any issue. In 2002, after becoming curious about our "optimal diet," he began a study of what we eat from a global perspective ---- discovering many startling issues and opportunities along the way. In addition to an MBA and a BS in Industrial Engineering, he holds a certificate in plant-based nutrition from the T. Colin Campbell Center for Nutrition Studies, where he has also been a member of the board of directors since 2012. Having concluded that our food choices hold the key to the sustainability of our civilization, he has made this his #1 priority---exploring all avenues for influencing humans everywhere to move back to the natural plant-based diet for our species.
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