Let the food revolution begin!

Four years ago I was obese and my blood pressure was averaging 155/95, and now it's consistently around 105/65 . . .without medication.

My 86-year-old mother, Helen, gave herself injections of insulin four times a day for over twenty years, and today she’s no longer taking it.

Pam, having ovarian cancer, and told by a couple of physicians that she only had a few months to live, decided not to accept that fate -  and that was fourteen years ago. Today she glows with a vibrant radiance seldom seen in women her age. (Pam's interview will be featured on Disease Proof in the near future; stay tuned.) 

Elisa, in her late 20’s, was bedridden and unable to function due to the devastation of lupus symptoms. She was put on nearly thirty medications to no avail. Today, in her early 30’s, her blood tests are normal, and she’s off all medications, except one as needed. She has her life back and shines with exuberant health.

Anthony, a young high school graduate was obese and heading down a dangerous path. Today he is slender and buff, and most importantly bypassing a future of obesity related diseases.

Bonnie was a young woman who had cystic acne so bad that it was painful to smile, and the blemishes eroded her self esteem. Her dermatologist said that diet wouldn’t help, and she was put on several prescription drugs over the years. Nothing worked. However, today she no longer has acne flare ups and is medication free.

Augie, at the age of 83, takes no medications, feels great, and has run in 40 marathons since his 70th birthday. His youthfulness is evident to all.      

Barb was succumbing to the typical symptoms of middle age women; increase in PMS, bloating and fatigue that led to inactivity. Today she’s trim and active; hiking mountainous terrain and riding her bike to work.

Scott, having lost 333 lbs without gastric bypass surgery is no longer homebound and today is a serious cyclist.

Jodi, having suffered with incapacitating psoriasis for over 30 years and the terrible side effects of meds to alleviate the rashes finally is symptom free without medication. Today her skin glows with radiant beauty.

Mark was on four prescriptions for asthma, and used an inhaler every morning upon waking up. Being a middle aged man who lost his father to heart disease, Mark lived in fear of experiencing a heart attack. Today he no longer has asthma, is medication-free, and is off the radar screen for heart disease. 

I’ve personally interacted with each person named above. They are the real deal. And they are just the tip of the iceberg of people all over America and beyond who are getting their health restored by following Dr. Fuhrman’s high-nutrient eating style. 

 

For years we've been led to believe that disease is just a part of the aging process; lulled to sleep by scribble marks on a prescription pad.

Perhaps some doctors and pharmaceutical companies have been misleading us. 

Perhaps in the past we didn’t know any better, but now that we know the truth we will choose to no longer live in ignorance. 

Enough is enough. It’s time to get smart.

The time has come for all of us to wake-up and jump on board the food revolution; and I’m not talking about the Jamie Oliver Food Revolution that adds butter and cheese to cream sauces, or grass fed beef to homemade noodles, or campaigns relentlessly for the removal of chocolate flavored milk from school lunches.

I’m talking about the kind of food revolution that eradicates unnecessary and expensive diseases from our bodies; the kind that prevents and reverses diabetes, hypertension and heart disease, and kills cancer . . . .the nutritarian food revolution!

The change of one person is a transformation. 

The change of many is a revolution.

Let the real food revolution begin ~ the nutritarian revolution!   

 

 

Related posts: 

Jamie Oliver Food Revolution

Dr. Fuhrman's thoughts on Emily's 'Jamie Oliver Food Revolution' post

 

Blood pressure control with medication does not prevent heart attack, stroke, or death

One in 3 adults in the U.S. has hypertension. In those over the age of 55, more than 50% have hypertension, which is a significant risk factor for heart attack and stroke. Sixty-nine percent heart attack sufferers and 77% of stroke sufferers have blood pressure higher than 140/90 mm Hg.1 Many organizations recommend that blood pressure be kept below 130/80 in order to prevent heart attack and stroke. However, a meta-analysis of 61 studies has concluded that risk for heart attack and stroke begins to increase when blood pressure is elevated above 115/75.2

The INVEST study involved 22,576 hypertensive participants aged 50 years or older. This particular portion of the study focused on participants that had both diabetes and coronary artery disease, in addition to hypertension . Subjects were given anti-hypertensive drugs (either a calcium channel blocker or a beta-blocker), and were placed in one of three groups according to their level of blood pressure control: tight control (<130), usual control (130-139), or uncontrolled (>139). Incidences of heart attack, stroke, and death were recorded over an 8-year period. Scientists found no differences in any of these outcomes between tight and usual control groups.3,4

This is a classic example of treating the symptom rather than the cause. Of course heart attacks and strokes were not prevented – one specific symptom, blood pressure, was addressed with medication, but the patients already had heart disease and diabetes, and they did not eliminate the toxic diet style that was the initial cause of these conditions. Therefore, their heart disease continued to progress.

Blood pressure can be kept under control naturally. High blood pressure is almost non-existent in non-Westernized populations.5-7 Salt and added sugars are significant contributors to elevated blood pressure, and these must be minimized. Reducing salt consumption alone has the potential to save millions of lives.8 A diet of whole plant foods also provides a favorable ratio of potassium to sodium. another important factor in blood pressure regulation.9

Most importantly, a diet based on natural plant foods does not merely address the problem with blood pressure; by maximizing protective nutrients, it reduces every risk factor for heart disease – LDL cholesterol, inflammation, insulin resistance, oxidative stress, etc. – a high nutrient diet is the most comprehensive preventive measure.

Also remember that anti-hypertension medications have plenty of side effects, including fatigue, headaches, and lightheadedness, plus increased risk of developing cardiac arrhythmias and diabetes. 10-12 In fact, excessive blood pressure lowering with medication can be dangerous, especially for the elderly, because it can prevent adequate blood flow to the heart leading to cardiac arrthymias and sudden cardiac death.13 Dietary modifications and exercise can radically prolong your life, not only are they much safer than drugs, but they also prevent dementia, cancer and other diseases simultaneously. If you have not read it already, please read my book Eat For Health, so you can more fully understand some of these basic concepts to take back control of your health destiny. Drugs don’t do it.

 

References:
1. American Heart Association. High Blood Pressure - Statistics. Statistical Fact Sheets - Disease/Risk Factors 2010 August 26, 2010]; Available from: http://www.americanheart.org/downloadable/heart/1261003279882FS14HBP10.pdf.
2. Lewington, S., et al., Age-specific relevance of usual blood pressure to vascular mortality: a meta-analysis of individual data for one million adults in 61 prospective studies. Lancet, 2002. 360(9349): p. 1903-13.
3. Cooper-DeHoff, R.M., et al., Tight blood pressure control and cardiovascular outcomes among hypertensive patients with diabetes and coronary artery disease. JAMA, 2010. 304(1): p. 61-8.
4. Schwenk, T., Blood Pressure Control in Patients with Diabetes and Coronary Artery Disease: No benefit for lowering BP to <130/80 mm Hg, in Journal Watch General Medicine. 2010.
5. Murphy, H.B., Blood pressure and culture. The contribution of cross-cultural comparisons to psychosomatics. Psychother Psychosom, 1982. 38(1): p. 244-55.
6. Cooper, R., et al., The prevalence of hypertension in seven populations of west African origin. Am J Public Health, 1997. 87(2): p. 160-8.
7. He, J., et al., Body mass and blood pressure in a lean population in southwestern China. Am J Epidemiol, 1994. 139(4): p. 380-9.
8. He, F.J. and G.A. MacGregor, Reducing population salt intake worldwide: from evidence to implementation. Prog Cardiovasc Dis, 2010. 52(5): p. 363-82.
9. Cook, N.R., et al., Joint effects of sodium and potassium intake on subsequent cardiovascular disease: the Trials of Hypertension Prevention follow-up study. Arch Intern Med, 2009. 169(1): p. 32-40.
10. Swaminathan, R.V. and K.P. Alexander, Pulse pressure and vascular risk in the elderly: associations and clinical implications. Am J Geriatr Cardiol, 2006. 15(4): p. 226-32; quiz 133-4.
11. Mitchell, G.F., et al., Pulse pressure and risk of new-onset atrial fibrillation. JAMA, 2007. 297(7): p. 709-15.
12. Elliott, W.J. and P.M. Meyer, Incident diabetes in clinical trials of antihypertensive drugs: a network meta-analysis. Lancet, 2007. 369(9557): p. 201-7.
13. Messerli, F.H., et al., Dogma disputed: can aggressively lowering blood pressure in hypertensive patients with coronary artery disease be dangerous? Ann Intern Med, 2006. 144(12): p. 884-93.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Drugs used to treat preventable diseases carry serious risks (Part 2 - ARBs)

Part 2:

Angiotensin receptor blockers - anti-hypertensive drugs – linked to lung cancer and heart-related deaths

lungs

Angiotensin-receptor blockers (ARBs) are used to to treat hypertension, heart failure, and diabetic nephropathy (kidney dysfunction). They work by blocking a hormone system that regulates vascular tone and water and salt balance to control blood pressure.

Because angiotensin can affect cell survival and angiogenesis (formation of new blood vessels), two important factors in tumor growth, angiotensin is thought to play a role in cancer progression.1 To determine whether taking ARBs affected cancer risk, scientists performed a meta-analysis of several studies to uncover any possible links between ARBs and cancers. They determined that ARBs carry a increased risk of new diagnosis of any cancer (8%), and a significantly higher risk of lung cancer (25%).2

One ARB in particular, olmesartan (Benicar), is now under scrutiny by the FDA for potential cardiovascular risks. In a clinical trial testing olmesartan’s efficacy for slowing kidney damage in diabetics, there were increased rates of sudden cardiac death and death from heart attack and stroke in the subjects taking the drug compared to those taking placebo.3

In my practice, and from results recorded from members at DrFuhrman.com, even people with dramatically high blood pressure readings and dramatically high cholesterol levels have successfully returned their levels to normal without medications. In fact, as published in the medical journal Metabolism, the nutritarian diet is the most effective method to lower high cholesterol, even more effective than drugs.4 If people were very informed of these results and the risks involved with taking medications many more would certainly embrace nutritional excellence as therapy. High cholesterol and high blood pressure are lifestyle-created conditions, and the safest and most effective treatment is a high nutrient diet and exercise.

 

 

References:

1. Li H, Qi Y, Li C, et al. Angiotensin type 2 receptor-mediated apoptosis of human prostate cancer cells.Mol Cancer Ther. 2009 Dec;8(12):3255-65.

Feng Y, Wan H, Liu J, et al. The angiotensin-converting enzyme 2 in tumor growth and tumor-associated angiogenesis in non-small cell lung cancer. Oncol Rep. 2010 Apr;23(4):941-8.

Zhao Y, Chen X, Cai1 L, et al. Angiotensin II / Angiotensin II type I receptor (AT1R) signaling promotes MCF-7 breast cancer cells survival via PI3-kinase/Akt pathway. J Cell Physiol. 2010 May 10. [Epub ahead of print]

2. Sipahi I, Debanne SM, Rowland DY, et al. Angiotensin-receptor blockade and risk of cancer: meta-analysis of randomised controlled trials. Lancet Oncol. 2010 Jun 11. [Epub ahead of print]

3. Reuters: UPDATE 2 – FDA looking into death risk from Daiichi’s Benicar. http://www.reuters.com/article/idUSN1113920620100611

4. Jenkins DJ, Kendall CW, Popovich DG, et al. Effect of a very-high-fiber vegetable, fruit, and nut diet on serum lipids and colonic function. Metabolism. 2001 Apr;50(4):494-503.

Interview with a Nutritarian: Jessica

I first read Jessica’s story on the Member Center of DrFuhrman.com. I was thrilled to read it, because many of us wait until we are well into our middle age years or beyond to consider getting our health back. She sought the path early on as a young mother in her twenties, and is not only setting a great example for her family, but is now a role model for many others. Welcome to Disease Proof, Jessica.   

young mother who lost weight

Tell about yourself and the events that led up to getting your health back.

I am a 26-year-old mother of one, military wife and homemaker. Since childhood, I’ve always had an issue with my weight, self-image, nutrition, and energy levels. I was always fatigued, and regularly woke up more exhausted than when I went to bed the night before. Over time my allergies grew worse, and asthma induced by activity dominated my desire to exercise. I felt like a shell of a person.

In my early twenties I had a laundry list of prescription meds for everything: depression, migraine headaches, allergies (including 2 allergy shots/week and an inhaler); and a medication to wake me up in the morning and one to put me to sleep at night. I had the resume of a hypochondriac, only I wasn't one. Western medicine just kept throwing meds my way instead of looking at causes for the ailments. Doctors had me believing that, "These things just happen" for no apparent reason. They wanted me to take meds for the rest of my life.

After I had my son, the extra weight really hurt so I began seeking a different path. In my search, I thankfully discovered Eat to Live. The book was my inspiration, and helped guide me to lose 43 lbs in five months. [158 lbs to 115 lbs] I am now off all meds except for one allergy medication, which is being used less frequently. I have no migraines, acne, depression, and best of all the sleep disorder has completely vanished! 

 

How did you feel before starting ETL?

I felt empty. I was disgusted at myself for being so unhealthy at my young age. My life was out-of-control and I felt helpless. One minute I would have the strength to eat healthy, and the next minute I would cave in and eat junk food. The food addiction set me up for a ritualistic "try and fail" dance that chipped away at my self-worth.

 

How do you feel now? 

I’m jubilant now that I’m in control of my life! I’m in the driver’s seat instead of being the hijacked victim of food cravings. I can feel the difference immediately when I eat something that is full of nutrients, like romaine lettuce or a green smoothie. My skin even glows instead of being plagued with blemishes. I also go out more, because I don’t have to try on fifty different outfits; looking fat in all of them. 

Becoming a nutritarian has changed me from being sad, angry, and wishing I were somebody else to loving myself. I feel alive. I’m in tune with my body now, and I feel like I’ve been born into a whole new life that’s full of possibilities!

before and after portraits of female

Do you have any success tip(s) to share?

Yes, read Eat To Live, and then take the six-week challenge to see how much your toxic addictions have been running (and ruining) your life. In fact, keep learning and read all of Dr. Fuhrman’s books and articles. You will never regret it!

 

Congratulations Jessica! 

Interview with a Nutritarian: Ronnie

Ronnie is an amazing example of the dramatic results that nutritarian eating can have on the body.  Not only did he lose over 140lbs in one year and get his precarious health restored, but is now completely off $600 a month of medications!  You will be astounded by his remarkable recovery. Welcome to Disease Proof, Ronnie.

formerly obese male with his wife (before and after pics)

Tell us about yourself and the events that led up to getting your health back?

In 2005 I had open heart bypass surgery, and two years later I had three stents put into an artery. Soon after being released from the second hospitalization, I was still experiencing chest pain.  I typed “reverse heart disease” into an on-line search engine and discovered the web site of Joel Fuhrman, M.D.

At that time I weighed over 300 lbs and couldn’t perform even the simplest of tasks without shortness of breath and chest pain. I was getting affairs in order for my impending death, including preparing my wife to take over our business.   

 

How did you feel before committing to nutritarian eating?

I was always hungry and I felt lethargic all the time. My brain seemed to be in a continual cloud of confusion, and every joint in my body ached.

    

What’s happened to your body and how do you feel now?

I committed to Dr. Fuhrman's high nutrient diet-style on July 10, 2008.  During the first seven months I lost 110 lbs.  By July 2009, I had arrived at my ideal weight; a total weight loss of 140 lbs! 

After a couple weeks of nutritarian eating I had renewed energy and hope. I gradually lost all aches and pains, and toxic hunger completely disappeared. Each morning I woke up with vitality for the day.

My chest pains have completely ceased. High blood pressure, high cholesterol, high triglycerides have all been reversed to a healthy range. With Dr. Fuhrman’s careful oversight through Ask the Doctor on the Member Center of DrFuhrman.com, I’ve been able to completely stop all medications. (Medications for blood pressure, high cholesterol, blood thinners and more.) As a result I’ve been able to save over $600.00 a month in out-of-pocket pharmaceutical expenses!    

Now I can:

  •         do heavy weight strength training 4 x week
  •         do interval cardio training
  •         play tennis
  •         ride a bike 

These are all activities I couldn’t even dream of doing two years ago! 

I’m no longer a patient that needs medications; I’m fit, healthy and well!

fit and healthy male

Ronnie, do you have any success tip(s) you’d like to share with others in their journey to health?

I highly recommend joining the Member Center of DrFuhrman.com. I couldn’t have done it without the lifesaving and valuable support from Dr. Fuhrman. He personally answered every question that I had along the way, and his continual guidance and oversight was always reassuring.

Also, don’t just read Dr. Fuhrman’s books, put them into practice!

 

Is there a final thought that you would like to share with anyone who is discouraged or has given up hope?

It’s always the darkest before the dawn. There is life in all of us if we will make the choice to live it! Nutritarian eating works! Don’t live your life always looking in the rearview mirror. Let the past be just that; the past. 

Our journey to optimal health is always in front of our eyes, and we sit at that intersection every new day. Go forward to freedom! Forget past failures and always keep your eyes on the prize of great health and vitality through excellent nutrition. 

 

I asked Ronnie’s wife, Peggy, if she had anything to add. She responded with the following note written directly to Dr. Fuhrman:

Dr. Fuhrman,

I want to add my note of appreciation to you for your hard work and devotion. I now have a new husband! 

Who can ever know how life can change? Over a year ago I was sure that Ronnie would not be with me much longer. Through his own doing, he was a prime candidate for a stroke or heart attack. Now, through his dedication and hard work, and the knowledge that you have given to him, he is not only (hopefully) going to live a long life, but he is living it to its fullest! His commitment to nutritarian eating is an inspiration to all of us.

None of this could have been possible without you.

Peggy 

 

  July 2008 July 2009
weight 300 lbs * 160 lbs
blood pressure

161/110 (on meds) *

115/70 (no meds)
waist 58" 34" *

BMI

41.5 (morbidly obese) 21.7 (healthy)
cholesterol 228 * 132
triglycerides 312 63
LDL 148 75
HDL   44

                                *Ronnie weighed more, but 300 lbs was his scale's limit.

                                * He now wears a size smaller in pants (30) than he did in high school (31)!

                                *300mg of Avapro and 200mg of Toprol for high blood pressure

                                * 20 mg of Lipitor for high cholesterol

                                     

Congratulations Ronnie!

 

image credits: capturedimage.net

Introducing Stephanie

 

 before portrait of obese female

Preface:  Over the next year or two, I'll be following the weight loss journey of Stephanie, age 39, who is 200% committed to getting her health back.  Her husband died recently and she’s currently raising four young children under the ages of nine, plus attending nursing school.  Stephanie has courageously volunteered to share her thoughts and medical stats with DiseaseProof readers as she undertakes the journey to optimal health.  Welcome Stephanie!

 

Why have you chosen to commit to nutritarian eating?  I currently weigh 398 lbs (5’10”) and I’m tired all the time.  I cry a lot and get easily irritated and aggravated.  My knees hurt, I have constant headaches and acid reflux.  My local doctor feels that I’m unable to lose weight on my own and is urging me to have gastric bypass surgery.  I want to play at the park, ride bikes and be a fit and healthy mother for my children.  Most importantly, I want to BE HERE for them.

What are some of the events in your life that have led you to this point?  I’ve been overweight my entire life, but have steadily added more pounds each year; especially after having babies.  Last year my husband died after a battle with congestive heart failure and a failed heart transplant.  In an instant, I became a 38-year-old widowed mother of four children ages eight to three, and the stress has been overwhelming.  During this past year I have been diagnosed with premature osteoarthritis in both knees, high blood pressure, ADHD, and major depression. 

Describe a typical day for you:  My alarm goes off at 6:45 am, but I hit the snooze button four times before I drag myself out of bed.  I struggle to pull myself together and prepare the kids’ breakfasts and get them off to school.  I plan my day by prioritizing how much energy and/or steps it will take to do an activity.  It’s difficult to do much with my children, because I’m unable to move fast due to my size. 

                                           I feel like I’m a prisoner in my own body. 

                                     front and side profile pic of obese female

  • Weight  398 lbs.
  • BMI  57.1
  • Blood pressure  140/100
  • Waist measurement  58”
  • Cholesterol  180
  • Triglycerides  98
  • HDL  48
  • LDL  112
  • Fasting blood sugar  87
  • currently taking anti-depressants, amphetamines for ADHD, and medication for urinary incontinence

Stephanie’s “official” starting date is November 1,  2009, and I’ll be posting her progress updates the first week of every month.  We are cheering for Stephanie and wish her all the best as she takes this courageous step to get her health and life back!