Just before Game 7 of the World Series, Dr. Oz hits a home run in the studio.
And It’s time to give credit where credit is due; and, today, my hat’s off to Dr. Oz. His “prehistoric diet” segment, that led off the 10-28-11 airing of his show, was one of the most powerful twenty minutes that I have ever seen on television. He called it his “most extreme experiment ever” in an effort to find the answer to this question:
Could a “prehistoric diet” save your life?
With an objective of lowering blood pressure, cholesterol and weight; they recruited three complete strangers (all female) and had them reside in a zoo and consume Dr. Oz’s “prehistoric diet” for 48 hours. Checking into their tent quarters at the Turtle Back Zoo in New Jersey, Dr. Oz himself delivered their rations: ten pounds of raw vegetables and fruit per day.
The good news is that they all survived — the bad news is that they missed their favorite foods and all agreed that they wouldn’t be able to stick with that diet in the real world. Even though Oz called it the diet that our ancestors lived on; hence (in other words, the natural diet for our species), they all agreed (including Oz) that it was too extreme for most Americans.
The even better news is that the next half of the segment was all about turning that near 100% whole plant-based eating into a reasonable, delicious and sustainable diet-style — one that they could easily maintain for the rest of their life.
The numbers. VERY impressive. In just 48 hours, here are the average results for the three women living in that tent at the zoo:
- Blood pressure: 128/91 was lowered to 115/72
- Triglycerides: 138 down to 88
- LDL cholesterol: down an average of 37 points
- Weight: average loss was 4 pounds.
With numbers like these, the three women AND the studio audience were all amazed — yet probably no one there would have wanted to be in their shoes while eating the raw veggies at the zoo. Great results, but too tough to sustain. What to do?
Enter Julieanna Hever. ”The Plant-based Dietitian” joyfully demonstrated how one could easily get all the protein and other nutrients from whole, plant-based foods. Looking like a million bucks, she congratulated the group and acknowledged how difficult it must have been; then quickly shifted to the positive, saying cheerfully:
That is so not how it has to be. It is vastly easier in the real world to follow a whole foods, plant-based diet and still reap those phenomenal benefits that you guys saw in such a short amount of time. I see it every day.
Of course, they began with the “Where do you get your protein?” question and quickly moved through a list of other vital nutrients — all of which are conveniently found in whole plant foods. Then she went through a huge chart on the wall showing many nutritious fruits and vegetables grouped by color:
- Brown. Whole grain pasta, whole grain breads, and quinoa
- Blue/purple. Blueberries, plums, and beets
- Green. String beans, limes and pears
- Yellow. Bananas, squash and lemons
- Orange. Oranges, carrots and mangoes
- Red. Strawberries, apples and tomatoes.
Food prep & tasting. Answering two key questions:
- How do you prepare the foods conveniently?
- How do you make this wonderfully healthy food taste great?
Once again, Julieanna takes them one at a time, preparing a healthy breakfast, lunch and dinner along with each of the three women. I picked up a few tips myself, such as adding frozen bananas to a breakfast smoothie that also included lots of leafy green vegetables. As she said, the addition of the bananas makes it impossible to detect the green veggies in the smoothie.
The Big Question. This is where the rubber meets the road — and Dr. Oz handled it perfectly. Acknowledging the life-saving benefits on the chart behind him, he looked all three of them in the eye and asked the $64,000 question very slowly:
Do – you – think – that – you – could – stay – on – these – kind – of – foods – for – the – rest – of - your – life?
The answer. A unanimous chorus of ABSOLUTELY along with big smiles and thumbs up all around. What more do we need to know? The benefits are amazing, the foods can be delicious and it will cost far less money in the long run — particularly if you factor in the vast array of “disease care” costs that you’ll be avoiding. This is very important information that people everywhere need to know.
As such, this is the message that Dr. Oz should be leading off every program with FOR — THE — REST — OF — HIS — LIFE. This is life-saving and world-changing information that should be shared by every health care provider on every visit with every patient. Then maybe someday this crucial information will even be taught in our schools. What a novel idea that would be.
You can do this.These three women proved that anybody can do this. After understanding the awesome power of eating this way and seeing the dramatic results, they then learned just how delicious and enjoyable this way of eating can be. Want to get this process started in your company, church or school? Give everybody two books for starters:
Our book, Healthy Eating — Health World, for all the powerful reasons (beyond health benefits) for shifting to a whole foods, plant-based diet. A compelling read that helps people decide that that they can and will take action NOW.
Julieanna’s book, The Complete Idiot’s Guide to Plant-based Nutrition. Since getting my copy a few weeks ago, I began promoting this book as the ideal companion to our book. A great guide to making this diet-style happen in your life with a plethora of great recipes along with critical information about every vitamin, mineral and nutrient known to man. Everyone should have this book in their house.
Both of these books can be ordered easily though Amazon by visiting our Store on this site. For a combined price of $21.15, you can take charge of your own health, help your children become “disease-proof,” and make incredible contributions to the health and harmony of our planet.
Video. You can now view this program on the Dr. Oz website; there are a series of four videos totaling about 2o minutes. Click here to begin with the first video. Or, if you just have a minute, you can meet Julieanna right now.
Want to see the recipes for the three meals that Julieanna prepared on the show?
What’s up next for Dr. Oz? After this phenomenally powerful program, what will he tell his audience next week? Earlier this year, he followed up a powerful show with Campbell, Esselstyn and Barnard with a program featuring the “Atkins-style” Dukan weight-loss diet the next week. Solid health-promoting information one week; y0-yo dieting the next.
But in his defense, and recognizing that he is in the entertainment business; maybe his contract won’t permit him to “tell the truth about nutrition” every week. If that is the case, then he should re-negotiate his contract. This same powerful message needs to be repeated many times before people will take it seriously — and before we can tame the health-care monster that is destroying our health and our planet.
I plan to record the Dr. Oz Show for the next few weeks, and I am hoping that he will continue to make us all proud — taking a firm and consistent stand on the health-promoting principles in which he personally believes. I’m hoping that he has more great shows like this one. We don’t need any more shows like the one he did a few months ago featuring the HCG Diet below. Those kinds of shows are not helping anyone — they’re just adding to the confusion.
Speaking of confusion. Here is an example of one of Dr. Oz’s confusing segments earlier this year. If he flip-flops, how will the casual viewer know when to believe him?
One more thing. If Dr. Oz actually starts consistently taking a stand, I will become his biggest fan. But, no matter what he does, I will be telling this exciting zoo story every chance I get. Here are a few more earlier blogs that are relevant to this one:
- Oz takes “confusion over clarity” to a new level – TIME
- Dr. Oz – back to the same old fad diets…
- Oz shares colon story; “cancer screening $$ business” gets bigger
If you like what you see here, you may wish to join our periodic mailing list. Also, for help in your own quest to take charge of your health, you might find some useful information at our 4-Leaf page. From the seaside village of Stonington, Connecticut – Be well and have a great day.
If you’d like to order our book on Amazon, visit our BookStore now.
—J. Morris Hicks…blogging daily at HealthyEatingHealthyWorld.com
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