Imagine the Revolution!

Are you sick and tired of a medical industry that's influenced by drug reps trained in communication skills, sales, and profit margins; and with research funded and designed to benefit pharmaceutical companies?

Are you fed up with a health care system, including dietitians and nurse educators who encourage diabetics to eat dangerously or serve pizza, fried chicken, and beef 'n noodles to severely ill patients?

Are you disappointed that our educational system puts no value in instructing students in optimal health and longevity?  How fulfilling and productive is a career intermingled with food addiction, hangovers, and disease?  What enjoyment and satisfaction is there in a beautiful home and nice car mixed with alcoholism, eating disorders, heart disease, pain meds, chemo treatments, diabetes, and broken relationships?

Are you saddened by a culture that models, by example, and promotes gluttonous pleasures and indulgences?  What will happen to a society in which eating for disease has run rampant? 

Are you disturbed by the fact that a quarter of a million dollars can be spent on a heart surgery that would have been easy to avoid with a proper diet-style?  Are you equally disturbed that $110 can be spent on a small vial of insulin for type 2 diabetes, when eating healthfully would've resolved it ~ while entire families go to bed hungry?  Is it even ethical to squander such financial resources?   Do we need more medical care or more health education?

  • Imagine the revolution.

  • Imagine medical care and treatments that get people well based on scientific nutritional research instead of unsuccessfully managing diseases based on financial gains and losses.

  • Imagine an education system that values instruction in optimal health and longevity as a top priority for all students; no child left behind.

  • Imagine an entire society that has eradicated food addiction and nearly 80% of its diseases.

  • Imagine the financial and emotional burdens lifted as a result of no more heart bypass surgeries, cancers, dementia, chemical restraints, and vials of insulin.

The change of one is a transformation.

The change of many is a revolution.

Change begins with you and me.

Let’s all be that change.

It's time for the revolution!

 

NutritionalResearch.org

 

Painting credit: “Washington Crossing the Delaware” by Emanuel Leutze; 1851; oil on canvas; Metropolitan Museum of Art

Photography credit:  (c) by Emily Boller

 

Healthy Inside and Out

Congratulations to all who have committed to following Dr. Fuhrman’s Holiday Challenge! We tend to think of giving tangible gifts and purchasing presents for others this time of year, but if you have been sticking to the pledge to eat only healthful foods and avoid junk foods, you have been granting yourself the greatest gift of all: the gift of health. That is something to be proud of. The gift of health will stay with you for the rest of your life, a life that will be set free from the waves of chronic diseases and health problems that beset most Americans.  

Most whom embark on Dr. Fuhrman’s Holiday Challenge probably do not contemplate how eating heaping salads, hearty vegetable and bean dishes, and other satisfying natural plant foods effects our skin. Hence, this post is a reminder that following this powerfully disease preventative and figure slimming lifestyle enhances the beauty and clarity of our skin as well.    

In a blog post I wrote last year, I explained the science behind how food is an enormous contributor to whether or not we will attain healthy, blemish free complexions. Here I will summarize that article as a reminder of why politely declining that homemade, yet sugar loaded cookie your co-worker urges you to sample or resisting the saturated fat laden eggnog at a holiday party will result in gorgeous skin and prepare you for any spontaneous holiday picture taking that comes your way. 

The beauty of our skin is remarkably influenced by the amount of hormones circulating inside of our bodies. Insulin, in particular, is associated with the health of our skin. Insulin is most commonly known as the hormone for regulating blood sugar and is associated with diabetes, yet it also happens to increase oils that appear on the surface of our skin. Insulin levels fluctuate based on what we eat, and these fluctuations can affect other hormones such as testosterone that also promote acne and dull skin.

 

Processed foods made with white flour and sugar lead to blood sugar spikes, causing insulin levels to go into the dreaded “pimple-producing zone”. Sugar and processed foods are awful for our skin!

 

Dairy products are just as noxious skin foes as processed foods and sugar.  Research conducted at Harvard University School of Public Health showed that milk contains bioactive molecules that act on the glands where blackheads are formed. William Danby MD, a dermatologist at Dartmouth, noted in an editorial accompanying this study that 70 to 90 percent of all milk comes from pregnant cows and that the milk contains hormones such as progesterone, testosterone precursors and insulin-like growth factor releasing hormones, all linked to acne. High levels of these hormones are linked to breast cancer and prostate cancer so avoiding foods that lead to breakouts and dull skin also helps us prevent these cancers.

 

The foods you should eat for radiant skin? Green vegetables, fruit, beans, nuts, seeds, avocadoes, starchy vegetables, and whole grains- all of the foods that are associated with longevity, disease prevention and succeeding on Dr. Fuhrman’s Holiday Challenge. These foods are loaded with thousands of potent phytochemicals like carotenoids and lycopene, substances that help our skin repair damage and remove and detoxify waste products and toxic compounds.  Skin damage occurs due to exposure to free radicals, which results in oxidative damage to our cells. By eating plenty of antioxidant loaded fruits and vegetables, our body becomes equipped with tiny chemical warriors that continuously fight free radical damage. The result is glowing, healthy looking skin. Now that is something worth being jolly about. 

 

Cheers to good health and I wish you much success and joy into the New Year!

 

The image at the top of the post is Talia a few years ago.  The second picture is Talia with her mother, Lisa Fuhrman, taken this past Thanksgiving. 

Diabetes alert

Today, March 23, 2010 is the 22nd annual American Diabetes Association Alert Day, and the American Diabetes Association reports sobering statistics:

Over 20 million people in the United States have type 2 diabetes. That doesn’t count the 6 million who have diabetes and don’t know it yet.1 Type 2 diabetes has been called the most challenging health problem of the 21st century. The dangerously high prevalence of overweight and obesity is at the heart of this problem.

Testing blood glucose

In the last five months, over 600,000 people have been diagnosed with diabetes. That's one person every 20 seconds.2  The ADA is correct – it is time to stop diabetes. The problem is they have no idea how to do this. They have no idea that in over 90% of patients, type 2 diabetes can be effectively and relatively quickly reversed through my nutritarian diet-style and exercise. 

Diabetes is the 7th leading cause of death in the United States. Diabetes is the leading cause of blindness in adults and the leading cause of kidney failure. Sixty to 70 percent of diabetics have nervous system damage. Diabetes doubles risk of heart attack and stroke.1 This suffering is tragic because excellent nutrition and exercise can reverse diabetes, and are much safer than conventional care. Taking glucose-lowering medications does not prevent diabetes complications. In fact, they often cause weight gain, exacerbating insulin resistance. Some of these medications even increase the risk of heart failure. Diabetics who take medications and continue to remain overweight and consume their disease-causing diet continue to damage their organs, develop complications, and die prematurely.

Did you know that type 2 diabetes also increases the risk of cancer?  Scientists believe that this is at least in part due to insulin therapy. A new review that analyzed data from several studies found that diabetic patients are 30% more likely to develop colorectal cancer, 20% more likely to develop breast cancer, and 82% more likely to develop pancreatic cancer.3  It is time to stop diabetes. So how do we stop it?

Simple. The ADA may encourage you to make small changes, afraid that you will give up if it looks difficult. But the truth is, a radical improvement in your health will require a radical improvement in your lifestyle. Some physicians may assume that patients will not be willing to adopt a diet that is based on unrefined plant foods, but they are wrong – a study comparing the American Diabetes Association guidelines to a whole-food, plant-based diet found exactly the opposite. Subjects assigned to the ADA diet reported that they felt more restricted in their dietary choices, and the rate of adherence was greater in the plant-based diet.4 Once people start to see positive changes in their health, they are enthusiastic about sticking to their plan.  The nutritarian diet-style I teach to my diabetic patients is even more effective. In fact, we just completed a study, soon to be published,which demonstrated that 9 out of 10 diabetics were able to come off all medications and have normal glucose readings. That essentially means they became non-diabetic. 

My Eat For Health dietary protocol is simply the most effective remedy for those with all types of diabetes. The type II can get completely well and the type I diabetics reduce their insulin by about half and stop the huge swings in glucose and prevent the devastating complications of diabetes.

The best diet for longevity, heart disease and cancer prevention, and a high level of overall health is also the best diet to prevent or reverse diabetes. It is a diet with a high nutrient per calorie ratio:

  • lots of non-starchy vegetables like greens, eggplant, tomatoes, mushrooms, onions, and garlic

  • beans

  • raw nuts and seeds

  • limited fresh fruit

  • limited animal products

  • no sweeteners

  • no white flour

When those with diabetes follow my recommendations, it becomes relatively easy for them to eat liberally – not feeling deprived or restricted – and still lose their excess weight easily. Their diabetes will melt away astonishingly quickly, reducing or eliminating their need for medications.

Tony is no longer diabetic. He succeeded in restoring his health despite the failures of conventional diabetes care. Read his incredible story below.

“I am 57 years old. I have always had a weight problem like everyone in my family. In December of last year, after feeling strange for several months, my sister (who has been diabetic for 25 years) tested me with her meter & my blood sugar was 491. 

She dragged me to the ER where I got 2 shots of insulin & a meal that included turkey, gravy, a box of sweetened cranberry juice & chocolate pudding which my sister advised me not to eat. After paying the $2,400.00 tab, I was instructed to make an appointment with an endocrinologist & sent home with a prescription for Metformin, daily aspirin & NO dietary advice. My sister suggested buying a meter on the way home. None of the two doctors or RN’s suggested getting a meter & testing. I started taking the Metformin as instructed.

My appointment with an endocrinologist a few days later was another eye opener. As soon as he walked into the room, without even looking at me or my meter which I brought with me with 80 stored blood sugar readings, he said “You need insulin.” Then he started to do a physical & said “You need to be hospitalized with an IV because you’re dehydrated; do you have medical insurance?” When I said “no,” he said “Get some Pedialyte and Gatorade & drink 6 glasses of each per day.” I asked “Don’t those drinks have sugar in them?” He said “Not really.” He gave me a prescription for “Januvia” ($400.00 for 100 tablets) & directed me to take two/day. He then handed me an 1800 calorie/day diet & disappeared. 

After paying the $1,200.00 for the visit & labs, I started taking the medication as directed. After two weeks, the medication made me too ill to drive or exercise & somehow caused my intestines to become obstructed (gas or something) & I spent all night trying to go to the bathroom. Only being low on cash kept me from going to the E.R. again. I also had to get up 3 or 4 times each night to eat. I phoned the doctor several times over the next week to get a different medication but he never returned one single call so I stopped taking the medication. 

Naturally, I was afraid to eat anything because I was afraid my blood sugar would climb. At my next visit, when I told him the medication was making me sick, he said “Just keep taking it, the symptoms will subside when your body gets used to it.” He said my A1C was 8.9%. One week later, I found a different doctor but my new doctor wasn’t interested in seeing me unless I paid him another $1,200.00 to repeat the physical & labs from two weeks ago even though I had a copy of my labs & he could consult with the other doctor. 

I was running out of money after spending $4,000.00 in two weeks. I’m not insurable due to “preexisting conditions” – diabetes and carpal tunnel. Here in CA, an HMO has the right to deny coverage to anyone with an illness. You can imagine how stressed I was, having to choose between constant expensive medication & the illness it caused or high blood sugar with its consequences. 

While doing research on the web, I came across Dr. Fuhrman’s website and ordered Eat to Live and Eat For Health and started the program. With all the weight loss/nutrition books out there from Atkins & a bunch of others, I was skeptical. 

I started following the recommendations in the section “Advice for the Diabetic Patient” weighing 220 lbs on 1-8-09 – the same day I stopped taking all diabetes medication. Within 3 months, I weighed 195. I had new blood work completed on 4-8-09 with a new doctor. She downloaded my blood sugar numbers from my meter & said “Whatever you’re doing, keep doing it because it’s working." I explained Eat to Live, my typical meals & snacks & told her I stopped taking medication on my own three months ago. She later phoned me with my lab results: A1C: 6.0% which she said was in a non-diabetic range (4 - 6%) The improvement from 8.9% to 6.0% in 3 months on “Eat to Live” was far better than I expected. I would have been happy with 7.0%.

I have even found it easy to maintain these guidelines while eating out – even though my diabetes class educators said “If you’re diabetic, it is impossible to eat right at restaurants so try to avoid eating out altogether.” Yesterday, my family took me out to our favorite Mexican restaurant for my birthday. I had grilled vegetarian fajitas with tofu and black beans. Remembering the information in Eat to Live about fiber, I left the pasty processed rice alone, I had ONE tortilla chip, ate the whole cup of Salsa & left the flour tortillas alone. Just as you stated in Eat to Live, by doing that, I had room for the grilled vegetables, mushrooms & tofu. I tested my blood sugar two hours later, expecting it to be around 180 because I overate. It was 124. 

The next morning, after your suggested breakfast without processed cereal, substituting raw nuts & a diced, unpeeled apple, I was shocked to test at 78 two hours after breakfast & 30 minutes of exercise (NordicTrack cross-country skier). I was so astounded that I re-tested with another meter & it indicated 90. The biggest revelation was the fact that I HAD NEVER ACHIEVED THESE RESULTS WITH MEDICATION - Metformin and Januvia (which made me ill). 

I have attended five diabetes “education” classes & I am appalled that the “Certified Diabetes Educators” constantly hand out suggested meals with eggs & toast or processed cereal & milk for breakfast, daily roast beef or turkey sandwiches for lunch & more chicken or other meat at dinner & limiting fruit to 1-2/day. They also teach that protein stabilizes blood sugar so it’s important to eat meat & dairy at each meal. After those dietary recommendations, she then spoke at great length about the evils of high cholesterol, high blood pressure & high blood sugar, then she spent two hours talking about the various drugs available to treat them. I have always wondered about the notion that if you are eating the right foods, why would you need drugs to protect yourself from the damage they cause? I now weigh 188 pounds. 

When I chat on WebMD’s diabetes message boards, some people with Type 2 Diabetes want to know how I’m managing my blood sugar without medication & I always tell them about www.drfuhrman.com !”

The human body has an amazing capacity to heal, even from diabetes. All we have to do is establish the optimal nutritional environment for healing with nutrient-rich foods and let the body do its work. A long, healthy life, free of diabetes and its tragic complications is possible, and it can be yours. 

You are the one who chooses whether you are going to live with your diabetes or get rid of it.

 

References:

1. American Diabetes Association: Diabetes statistics http://www.diabetes.org/diabetes-basics/diabetes-statistics/

2. American Diabetes Association: Stop Diabetes http://stopdiabetes.diabetes.org/site/PageServer?pagename=SD_homepage

3. Eurekalert: Experts call for further research into the relationship between insulin therapy and cancer

http://www.eurekalert.org/pub_releases/2010-03/w-ecf030210.php

Pollak M, Russell-Jones D. Insulin analogues and cancer risk: cause for concern or cause célèbre? Int J Clin Pract. 2010 Feb 26. [Epub ahead of print]

4. Barnard ND, Gloede L, Cohen J, et al. A low-fat vegan diet elicits greater macronutrient changes, but is comparable in adherence and acceptability, compared with a more conventional diabetes diet among individuals with type 2 diabetes. J Am Diet Assoc. 2009 Feb;109(2):263-72.

Insulin May Pose Increased Cancer Risk for Diabetics

Image of a hand holding a insulin needle with a yellow tip.

Diabetics who take insulin-type drugs appear to be more prone to increased rates of cancer diagnosis, according to several prominent researchers who spoke at a press conference at the annual meeting of the European Association for the Study of Diabetes. The concerns were first raised by German researchers in a data base analysis submitted in 2008, which linked an insulin-based medication to increased cancer risk. The researchers generally agreed that insulins may promote cancer through their actions as growth factors.

The message here is that when you follow my nutritarian diet-style and protocols for diabetes, a Type 2 diabetic would not need an insulin-based medication. In fact, over 60% of diabetics who follow my protocol no longer need any medication at all. A Type 1 diabetic following my nutritarian diet-style would only have half the insulin requirements, without the highs and lows, which would signifacantly extend their lifespan and reduce complications.

Further reading: http://drfuhrman.com/disease/Diabetes.aspx

Diabetes and Insulin; the New Baseball and Apple Pie of America

Image of a shot of insulin going into a piece of apple pie, there is a baseball propping the needle up.

With the current epidemic of 40% of adults living in the US having diabetes or pre-diabetes, diabetes and insulin have become household words; almost as common and all-American as baseball and apple pie.

Obesity.  Diabetes.  Metabolic Syndrome.  Insulin resistance.  Blaah.  Blaah.  Blaah.  Yawn.

Ten percent of those with diabetes have type I or juvenile diabetes.  It’s an auto-immune disease where the body attacks and destroys its own islet cells that produce insulin.  Most often it appears in childhood and the child is totally dependent upon insulin 24/7 for the rest of his or her life.

The remaining ninety percent have type II or adult onset diabetes.  (Some call it insulin resistant diabetes.)  The pancreas makes insulin, but due to layers of excess fat surrounding the cells, they become insulin resistant, thus resulting in high blood sugar.

Diabetes, whether it is type I or type II, is a nasty disease that eventually produces life threatening complications such as heart disease, heart failure, blindness, kidney disease, circulatory problems and amputations; not to mention daily micromanagement of blood sugars, and astronomical costs of diabetic supplies, insulin, doctor and hospital bills, and high insurance premiums as a result of the disease.  On top of all that, with the best of care and self-management, one can still feel miserable when blood sugars fluctuate. 

The type I diabetics can utilize less insulin, stop hypoglycemic events and protect their future health with a nutritarian diet.  However, almost everyone with type II diabetes can get completely rid of it through embracing Dr. Fuhrman’s diet-style.  Dr. Fuhrman’s results in this arena are remarkable.  Imagine if the majority of type II diabetics took the challenge to get totally well.  That translates into almost 90% of those with diabetes; resulting in nearly 40% of the adult US population completely free from a life of diabetes and diabetes related complications!

Ask any kid who lives day-in-and-day-out with type I diabetes if he or she would consider committing to the nutritarian way of eating in exchange for the privilege of getting completely rid of diabetes for the rest of his/her life.  Hands down every child and teen would gladly embrace the opportunity.

As a nation, let’s all get healthy and eradicate type II diabetes from our vocabulary.  May diabetes no longer be an all-American, household word for generations to come!

Drugs for diabetes can perpetuate type II diabetes, and often cause more weight gain and worse disease outcomes.  Let’s get real and expose this nasty disease called diabetes.  Do you know someone suffering from it?  Without revealing the person’s identity, how has it affected his or her life?  If they knew for sure they could get rid of it, with excellent nutrition and daily exercise, would they?

http://drfuhrman.com/library/diabetes_epidemic.aspx

Citrus Nutrient May Help Stop Obesity

In college, the only citrus I got was the lime in my beer bottle, but now I know better. Citrus fruits are loaded with health-promoting nutrients, like vitamin C.

Kiwi fruit, watermelon, strawberries, mangos and raspberries are all packed with vitamin C. And in May, vitamin C was found to stave off age-related vision loss.

Now, new findings in the journal Diabetes claims another fruit nutrient, naringenin—a flavonoid in citrus fruits—halts the development of metabolic syndrome, which leads to diabetes, heart disease and obesity.

For the study, scientists fed mice a high-fat diet—to simulate a western diet—in order to induce symptoms of metabolic syndrome and discovered mice fed a fatty diet plus naringenin had “corrected” levels of triglycerides and cholesterol.

Naringenin also protected against insulin resistance. Experts say naringenin reprogrammed the liver to burn up excess fat, instead of storing it. However, more research is needed to determined naringenin’s exact effect on heart disease.

In related news, pomegranates were found to reduce inflammation associated with cardiovascular disease.

Via EurekAlert!

Image credit: adamjtaylor

Scientists Find the Link Between Obesity and Diabetes

Published in the journal Cell Metabolism, researchers have determined fat cells in obese people release a protein, called pigment epithelium-derived factor or PEDF, and when let into the blood stream PEDF causes muscles and the liver to become desensitized to insulin. In response, the pancreas produces more and more insulin to counteract the problem, but eventually the pancreas craps out, leading to the development of type-2 diabetes; ScienceDaily reports.

Diabetes and obesity are major problems in the United States. In January, a report revealed 24 million Americans now have diabetes. But don’t despair! You don’t have to be another statistic. A diet based on fruits and vegetables offers amazing protection against type-2 diabetes and keeps you thin.

In related news, obesity was found to increase the risk of endometrial cancer—adding nearly 22 times more risk—and obesity has also been linked to poor ovary health and impaired fertility.

Image credit: füthart

Vegetable Diets Better for Diabetes

Appearing in the journal Nutrition Reviews, new findings suggest vegetarian and vegan diets offer significant benefits for diabetes control, more so than non-vegetarian. Clinical trials show individuals with type-2 diabetes on low-fat vegan diets had improved glycemic control, compared to conventional diets. Weight-loss is part of the explanation why, but reduced consumption of saturated fat and increased intake of fiber and plant nutrients offer additional advantages; Unbound Medline reports.

Plant foods, like green veggies, garlic and nuts, are potent diabetes-fighters, helping to keep glucose levels within normal range and eventually allowing people to kick their diabetes for good, unlike taking insulin, which can actually make things worse!

And last month, a report claimed Hispanic teenagers who started eating more fruits and vegetables and less sugar, lowered their risk of type-2 diabetes.

Image credit: Lars Odemark

Diabetes: Brits Get Drugs Before Better Diet

In the United Kingdom 1 in 3 people with diabetes are given medication too soon, instead of being encouraged to eat better and exercise. The study, presented at a Diabetes UK conference, revealed 36% of the 650 people studied were put on medication within 1 month of being diagnosed, despite medical guidelines recommending lifestyle changes be tried first. Startling when you consider 400 people a day are diagnosed with type-2 diabetes in the United Kingdom; BBC News investigates.

This is sad, especially in light of all the research linking diet to diabetes, such as the dangers of drinking soda and the benefits of eating vegetables. Consuming a lot of high-fiber, high-nutrient foods, i.e. fruits and veggies, improves pancreatic function and lowers insulin resistance, allowing glucose levels to return to normal range without medications.

The UK’s had a rough go of it. Health officials recently urged people to buy less saturated fat and Prince Charles blasted junk food for children’s disconnect with nature, but luckily they’ve enlisted Wallace and Gromit to help fight obesity and improve health!

Image credit: palestrina55

Surprise! Weight-Loss Helps Diabetics...

Reported in The Journal of the American Medical Association researchers reveal weight-loss and lifestyle changes are more effective than insulin therapy for overweight individuals with insulin-resistant type-2 diabetes. High insulin levels overload tissues with fatty molecules, leading to insulin-resistance. And treating people with MORE insulin does not overpower the resistance, but can cause organ damage. Losing weight and improving diet is much safer; Medical News Today explains.

An estimated 24 million Americans now have diabetes. And drugs are not answer. According to Dr. Fuhrman, a diet rich in healthy foods, such as green vegetables, beans, tomatoes, mushrooms, onions, garlic, raw nuts, seeds and some fruit, in combination with weight-loss and exercise can help you kick insulin and reverse diabetes.

America needs to take the hint! More and more of us have chronic conditions, like heart disease, cancer and diabetes, than ever before. And all this extra fat isn’t helping.

Image credit: Insnay