HELPING without proselytizing: 4 words you should use often

“TAKE–THE–4LEAF–SURVEY!”

Embed jpg survey u rThere are 37 concise chapters in our new book and one of them, Chapter 34, deals with the challenge of helping your friends, family and co-workers learn to benefit from healthy eating without alienating them. It is entitled: Proselytizing NOT Recommended. Here is an excerpt:

My guidelines on proselytizing are similar to my thoughts about selling. No one likes to be “sold” anything. I prefer the word “marketing,” which can be described as a subtle process of cultivating a desire to purchase something. Here’s my list of behavioral guidelines on this delicate subject:

  1. Never offer unsolicited advice to anyone.
  2. Don’t make negative comments about an unhealthy looking meal someone else is eating.
  3. Never talk about health or diet with anyone unless they ask for your opinion.
  4. When people do ask for information, try to keep your initial response to a minimum. If they want to know more, they will ask.
  5. Try to keep delicate discussions one-on-one. If someone asks about your eating philosophy in front of a lot of people, try to offer a concise, courteous response–then offer to continue the conversation later, perhaps over a healthy meal.

So you might be thinking, if we can’t tell people about the powerful truths that we have learned, how can we make a difference?” For starters, we can follow this simple advice from Gandhi:

Be the change you want to see in the world.

Coming this summer to an online bookstore near you

Coming this summer to an online bookstore near you

But what else can you do? Now that we have our 4Leaf Survey up and running online, we want you to use it to help your friends, family and co-workers. Just ask them to “take the 4Leaf Survey” at 4leafsurvey.com to find out if they are eating better than you are. Try to make a lighthearted game out of the process.

We have found that people like to take surveys and see how they score in comparison to others. Our survey consists of twelve multiple choice questions and can be taken in two minutes.

Upon completion of the twelve questions, the individual will immediately see his/her score, of which there are six possibilities–ranging from the “Unhealthful Diet” level with under 10% of daily calories from whole plant-based foods to the “4Leaf” level, with over 80% of daily calories from those healthiest of foods.

After seeing their score and a concise description of their current eating level, they are also given the opportunity to get the FULL report for that level via email. So if your friend has an interest in learning more, they can have that FULL report in front of them in just a few seconds. And that’s when the learning process really begins.

617 jpeg 4Leaf LogoThat’s because we will now have their email addresses and will use them responsibly to gently guide them down the pathway to vibrant health. Here is a link to the FULL report for the “Better Than Most” level, which is the level where most of your more health-conscious friends are probably now eating. Better Than Most level- Survey Results.

We estimate that 25% of the people in the USA are eating at this “better than most” level and that 65% are currently eating at the lowest “Unhealthful Diet” level. That leaves only 10% that are eating at the 1Leaf level or higher.

We think our 4Leaf Survey is a great way for you to play a big part in getting the majority of humans up to at least the 2Leaf level, which would mean that the average person would then be eating almost ten times more whole plants than they are today. The collective positive impact of that significant dietary shift on human health, the cost of health care, the water crisis, climate change and animal suffering would be staggering.

Why is this a good way to help your friends, family and co-workers begin the journey toward plant-based without alienating them?

Here are my “Six from Hicks” reasons:

  1. It’s fun to take surveys and see how you scored compared to others.
  2. 4Leaf eating is not perceived as extreme or “all or nothing,” like vegan or vegetarian.
  3. The 4Leaf formula implies a little “wiggle room.”
  4. Everyone can continue their 4Leaf “self education” process at their own pace.
  5. It’s a way to “lead a horse to water,” then each individual must decide.
  6. The whole process takes “proselytizing” out of the equation; you’re just passing along a cool survey that they might find interesting.
T. Colin Campbell, PhD, Nutritional Biochemistry, Cornell

T. Colin Campbell, PhD, Nutritional Biochemistry, Cornell

One more thing about the survey and the 4Leaf model in general. Recently, I got an unsolicited endorsement in an email from T. Colin Campbell, PhD, the Cornell professor who led the most comprehensive study of human nutrition ever conducted.

He sent me the message while he was participating in a high level cancer conference featuring fifty of the world’s top cancer researchers. During that conference, in response to my 4Leaf “vital sign” newsletter, he compared our 4Leaf Survey model to the “very comprehensive survey models” that were being presented by the world’s top cancer specialists that week.

“Your 4Leaf model is one-hundredth the complexity but has real value that may exceed any of these.”

The Bottom Line. The 4Leaf Survey is a powerful tool that can be used sort of like a stealth bomber; subtly helping the people who you care about learn to take charge of their health AND do some wonderful things for the environment at the same time.

As Dr. Campbell implies above, our survey is not a gimmick, it is a serious tool–and it just may become the world’s most powerful vehicle for helping people everywhere begin the process of learning what they should be eating. Who knows? The 4Leaf Survey Score might also be  the next “Vital Sign” in the World of Medicine. So, in closing, I ask you to:

Use those “FOUR WORDS” often. We’ll take it from there.

You can lead the horse to water; we’ll try to get her to take a sip.

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. eCornell is now using our survey in their plant-based nutrition course. Check it out on your smartphone at eCornell.com/4Leaf-Survey.

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 Program and also enjoy some great recipes from Lisa’s 4Leaf Kitchen.

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

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

Nutrition Certificate

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A new “vital sign” in the field of medicine?

Could what we eat be more important to our health than not smoking?

Embed jpg survey u rThe CDC estimates that poor diet is as harmful to health as is smoking. Yet, while smoking status is routinely assessed at every patient visit, evaluation of dietary health is neglected because a quick tool to assess its status has been lacking. Until NOW.

The simple 4Leaf Survey can be completed by patients in less than three minutes. Their 4Leaf score generated serves as a dietary “vital” sign, assessing the healthfulness of each patient’s diet.

Without a doubt, the future of medicine will include a great deal of focus on what we put on our forks. And it has already begun–all over the world. In New York City, Arizona, Australia, Canada, Ireland and in the Finger Lakes Region of New York state–primary care, mainstream physicians who are fed up with “disease management,” are embracing a whole new way of practicing medicine. They are now harnessing the power of food to reverse disease and promote health.

Real doctors embracing the power of food. That’s right, we’re not talking about a bunch of “veggie-loving quacks,” we’re talking about top notch physicians with degrees from places like Yale, Columbia, NYU and Cornell–and practicing medicine at places like Bellevue Hospital in New York and Kaiser Permanente in California. And many of them have begun to use our 4Leaf Survey score as the new “vital sign” of healthful eating that trumps everything else when it comes to promoting health.

“When diet and exercise are not enough…” How many times have you heard this phrase during TV commercials advertising a never-ending stream of drugs?

“When diet and exercise aren’t enough, ask your doctor if our new drug is right for you.”

The problem is that, up until now, medical doctors rarely told patients anything at all about the most important word in that phrase: DIET, let alone what constitutes a healthy one. Like almost everyone else in the developed world, our medical professionals have never been taught what constitutes an optimal diet OR how crucial it is to human health. But that sad fact is about to change.

Dr. T. Colin Campbell, Professor Emeritus of Nutritional Biochemistry, Cornell University---author of The China Study

We used Dr. T. Colin Campbell’s definition of an optimal diet for humans.

Mainstream physicians around the globe are now learning that near optimal diets do indeed promote health– by preventing disease or reversing it if it already exists. So what is the optimal diet?

The healthiest people on Earth, the ones who live the longest and have the least disease, eat diets composed of mostly whole plants. According to Cornell’s Dr. T. Colin Campbell, the researcher who led the most comprehensive study on nutrition ever conducted:

“The closer we get to eating a diet of whole, plant-based foods, the better off we will be.”

The Origin of 4Leaf. The closest we could possibly get to Dr. Campbell’s definition would be to derive 100% of our daily calories from whole plants. As that would be nearly impossible in today’s world, we set the top bar at 80%, and called that the 4Leaf level of eating—the healthiest of six possible levels. The other five are:

  • If eating at the 2Leaf level, one is deriving between 40 and 60% of their daily calories from whole plants.

    If eating at the 2Leaf level, one is deriving between 40 and 60% of their daily calories from whole plants.

    Unhealthful Diet. Fewer than 10% of daily calories from whole plants. This is the Typical Western or the Standard American Diet (SAD).

  • Better than Most. 10% to 19% of daily calories from whole plants.
  • The 1Leaf level. Deriving 20% to 39% from whole plants.
  • The 2Leaf level. Deriving 40% to 59% from whole plants.
  • The 3Leaf level. Deriving 60% to 79% from whole plants.

So, how do the physicians know how well their patients are now eating? It all starts with the 4Leaf Survey. While waiting to see the doctor, the patient takes the one page survey. That’s when the average patient first realizes that he/she is eating nowhere near an optimal diet—with most of them scoring below the 1Leaf level. (Visit 4leafsurvey.com to take our 2-minute online survey now.)

Does your doctor know how to reverse heart disease?

Food is about to become a HUGE part of healthcare.

Reviewing with the provider. The patient then reviews the survey with the medical provider. They are given handouts to explain the various leaf levels and suggestions as to how to improve their score* and, more importantly, their health.

In addition, they are sent home with a daily version of the survey and a tracking form to use to monitor their progress. (All of these forms can be found in the “4Leaf Tool Kit” at 4leafprogram.com)

Engaging the patient in the process. This is the secret behind the use of the 4Leaf Survey. It is a simple tool that gets the patients actively engaged in the process of taking charge of their health. With the survey, they can easily see where they are losing points and can quickly begin replacing some of their “negative” points with “plus” points that accompany the whole, plant-based foods.

More calories from whole plants; less from everything else. How simple is that?

More calories from whole plants; less from everything else. How simple is that?

Next comes meal planning. The key is replacing animal-based and highly processed foods with whole plants. With the handy tools found on 4leafprogram.com, the patient begins by working on transforming all of their “routine” meals to the 4Leaf level.

4Leaf eating works FAST. Whenever someone at the 1Leaf level or lower begins to eat at the 3Leaf or 4Leaf level, he/she can expect to see rapid improvements, including weight loss, more energy and a sharp reduction in the requirement for prescription drugs–a fact that prompted us to include this statement in our book.

CAUTION. Eating the 4Leaf way may quickly decrease your need for medications. You should tell your physician what you’re doing. If he/she is not familiar with, or skeptical of, this eating-style, please direct him or her to plantrician.org and nutritionstudies.org.

Highly efficient. For the health-care professional who is more interested in promoting health than in managing disease, there is no more efficient process to evaluate diet and promote improvement than 4Leaf for Life. Simple + effective + low cost and fast = very high value.

By “prescribing” the 4Leaf Survey, the many helpful tools on the 4Leaf website and 4Leaf JPEG Guide Frontour new book, “4Leaf Guide to Vibrant Health,” physicians can facilitate HUGE improvements in the health of their patients with very little expense (or time) expended by the patient or the physician.

Special one-pager for all healthcare practitioners. Containing much of the above content, this special, printer-friendly, one-pager is entitled, “Guiding Your Patients to Vibrant Health.” You may want to share it with your doctor.

Like we said earlier, If your doctor is not familiar with, or skeptical of, this eating-style, please direct him or her to plantrician.org and nutritionstudies.org.

For more printer-friendly copies of 4Leaf Survey forms and other materials, look under the “4Leaf Tool Kit” at 4leafprogram.com.

Copyright © 2015, 4Leaf Global, LLC

For more information, visit our website at 4leafprogram.com and contact us about the use of our 4Leaf materials in your practice.

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. eCornell is now using our survey in their plant-based nutrition course. Check it out on your smartphone at eCornell.com/4Leaf-Survey.

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 Program and also enjoy some great recipes from Lisa’s 4Leaf Kitchen.

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

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

Nutrition Certificate

Posted in 4Leaf for Life, M.D.s---Health-Promoting, Medical Experts, Prevention, Vibrant health | 1 Comment

Is the media waking up to the POWER of our food choices?

Well, maybe a few of them are–here are three encouraging stories.

Nicholas Kristof

Nicholas Kristof

1. Let’s lead off with Nicholas Kristof’s column in the New York Times a few days ago–“Our Water-Guzzling Food factory.” He starts out with this question: “Which consumes the most water?” The choices are a ten-minute shower, a handful of 10 almonds, a quarter-pound hamburger patty or one washing machine load. From the article (See link below)

The answer? By far, it’s the hamburger patty. The shower might use 25 gallons. The almonds take up almost a gallon each, or close to 10 gallons for the handful. The washing machine uses about 35 gallons per load. And that beef patty, around 450 gallons.

According to my calculations, not only did the hamburger patty win, but it consumed over six times as much water as all of the other three combined. Later in the article he makes a lame attempt at suggesting we shouldn’t be eating so much meat:

Like most Americans, I eat meat, but it’s worth thinking hard about the inefficiency in that hamburger patty — and the small lake that has dried up to make it possible.

Maybe our industrial agriculture system is beginning to change, for we’re seeing some signs of a food revolution in America, with greater emphasis on organic food and animal rights. Just a week ago, Walmart called on suppliers to stop keeping calves in veal crates and hogs in gestation crates.

Timothy Egan

Timothy Egan

2. The second one is from Timothy Egan, also in the NY Times, “The Arrogance of Jeb Bush.” So what’s so arrogant about Bush? The same thing that is arrogant, or simply ignorant, about most elected Republicans across the nation–their almost universal denial of the role of human activity in driving climate change. Egan writes about Bush:

Bush the youngest believes the Earth is warming. No doubt, he’s willing to go further out on a limb and conclude that heat expands, cold contracts and a dolphin is not a fish.

That’s as far as he’ll go. He says the science is “convoluted,” even though the latest assessment from international climate scientists states with 95 percent confidence that humans are the cause of a sick planet. That obfuscation is also understandable. You simply cannot be a leader of the Republican Party without appearing to know less than a fifth grader about earth science.

The point here is that almost everyone over ten years old knows that human activity is driving climate change. They now need to learn that our food choices are driving more climate change than all other forms of human activity combined. Speaking of food choices, I should also point out that Timothy Egan seems to “getting it” to some extent. Later in the article, he states:

“And for the people to say the science is decided on, this is just really arrogant, to be honest with you,” said Bush. “It’s this intellectual arrogance that now you can’t have a conversation about it even.”

Is it arrogant to say that smoking causes lung cancer? That you shouldn’t text and drive? That the American diet and lifestyle cause Type 2 diabetes, which is killing people? There is some wiggle room in each of those assertions. But you test them at your peril.

Interestingly, he might be the first mainstream columnist to matter-of-factly mention the cause of Type 2 Diabetes.

Beyoncé, according to Forbes, the most powerful celebrity in the world

Beyoncé, according to Forbes, the most powerful celebrity in the world

3. Four of the world’s top five most powerful celebrities are either vegan or leaning that way. Beyoncé (#1) and Ellen DeGeneres (#5) are openly vegan. Dr. Dre (#3) says he “doesn’t eat meat, but occasionally fish.” Finally, Oprah at #4, has spoken many times about the many advantages of plant-based eating. See Forbes article below.

It’s time to leverage the incredible power that these people bring to the world table of SUSTAINABILITY.

The Bottom Line. I have been writing about the need for powerful leadership to step forward and form a global coalition that will invest billions of dollars in enlightening the world about the most important topic in the history of humanity–our food choices in the 21st century. And now is the time. It’s time for a few passionate leaders to leverage the science, the health benefits, the more accepting public opinion and the fact that four of the world’s five most powerful celebrities are aware of the world-changing advantages of plant-based eating.

Promoting health, hope and harmony on planet EarthIt’s time to bring all of that together into a globally-organized effort to urgently begin the process of taking the animal out of the equation when it comes to our food choices.

Less animals + more plants = healthy people and a sustainable ecosystem.

The time for change has never been better–and that is why my #1 priority is doing all that I can to identify, enlighten and influence one or more powerful leaders to accept the challenge. We need powerful leaders who will make this global coalition the single most important thing that they will do for the rest of their lives.

What can you do? You can start by getting the “animal out of the equation” in your own diet. You can also become a part of this discussion. You can ask other people to look at the simple arithmetic that any 3rd grader could understand. You can challenge the “leaders” that you know about the unsustainable nature of our lifestyle. You can ask them why no one in power ANYWHERE is talking about this crucial topic. Finally, you can invite me to speak at your company, church, university or club.

Source articles.

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. eCornell is now using our survey in their plant-based nutrition course. Check it out on your smartphone at eCornell.com/4Leaf-Survey.

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 Program and also enjoy some great recipes from Lisa’s 4Leaf Kitchen. Got a question? Let me hear from you at jmorrishicks@me.com. Or give me a call on my cell at 917-399-9700.

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

Nutrition Certificate

Posted in Activism & Leadership, Sustainability | Tagged | 4 Comments

Do your children know what we’re doing to our oceans?

Featuring a new 12-minute video from Philip Wollen

Philip Wollen, an enlightened former top corporate executive on a mission

Philip Wollen, an enlightened former top corporate executive on a mission

Not familiar with him? A former top Australian business executive, he now describes himself as a humanitarian philanthropist–dedicating the rest of his life to ending the despicable acts of our species when it comes to all other living things. A few excerpts from his Wikipedia page:

Philip Wollen OAM (born 1950) is an Australian philanthropist. He is a former Vice-President of Citibank and was also General Manager at Citicorp. At age 34, Australian Business Magazine named him in the top 40 headhunted executives in Australia.[2] In 2005 he received the Medal of the Order of Australia [3] and in 2007 he won the Australian of the Year (Victoria) award.[3][4] In 2012 he was made an Honorary Fellow of the Oxford Centre of Animal Ethics, UK. In 2014 he received the University of Adelaide Distinguished Alumni Award Wollen went to school at the Bishop Cotton Boys’ School, Bangalore. He lives with his wife Trix and his four dogs in Melbourne, Victoria.

In short, this is the kind of inspired leadership we so desperately need. After rising to the top of the corporate world, he became enlightened about the ecological horrors associated with how we humans choose to feed ourselves. And, like me, he has concluded that it will take powerful leadership to get us back on the right track. Yesterday, after reading my blog  about his fellow former business tycoon, Bill Gates, he weighed in with this comment:

Well said, Jim. . . . . If we could only get 5 people in a room and enlighten them to the truth of the animal industrial complex, this world would be on a fast track to sanity . . . . . Xi Jinping, Rupert Murdoch, Pope Francis, Bill Gates and Narendra Modi. (Of course, I could think of other attendees – but this is a fair start).

Pope FrancisI like Philip’s list of five and am actively working toward reaching those kinds of powerful leaders. Currently, I am preparing myself for an upcoming meeting that a colleague and I will soon be having with a very prominent and highly respected leader outside the USA. No he’s not the pope, but he could probably figure out a way to get us a hearing with him.

We believe that this particular man has the requisite combination of integrity, conviction, courage, resources, leadership skills and popularity–to organize and lead a global coalition aimed at urgently promoting the health of our ecosystem that gives us life. If that meeting is a success, you will hear all about it. Maybe he’ll even be able to get us that meeting with the Pope.

Now, sit back and take a listen to my friend, Philip Wollen, a powerful voice of enlightened leadership. As he states above, with a few more enlightened leaders, we might be able to get ourselves on a fast track to sanity. 

One more thing, I have gotten to know Philip through our mutual “enlightenment” regarding the unconscionable horrors and gross unsustainability of our food choices in the 21st century. And I am truly honored that he chose to provide this endorsement for our upcoming book, the “4Leaf Guide to Vibrant Health, Using the Power of Food to Heal Ourselves and Our Planet.”

“The thesis of this book is simple—and it provides solid, fact-based reasons for its conclusion: It is imperative for humans to get off the meat, egg and dairy drug. For me, these reasons also alluded to the petals of the four leaf clover: faith, hope, love and luck. Lucky people will find this book–ethical and wise people will take its message seriously.”–Philip Wollen, Humanitarian Philanthropist, Former General Manager of Citicorp in Australia

This powerful new book will soon be available on Amazon in paperback and Kindle format.

Available soon on Amazon in paperback and  Kindle format.

Philip’s famous video from down under. Just in case you’ve never seen this fiery speech that went viral and has been seen by millions, click here to take a look at the page on my website that he shares with my esteemed colleague, Dr. T. Colin Campbell.

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. eCornell is now using our survey in their plant-based nutrition course. Check it out on your smartphone at eCornell.com/4Leaf-Survey.

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 Program and also enjoy some great recipes from Lisa’s 4Leaf Kitchen.

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

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

Nutrition Certificate

Posted in Activism & Leadership, Sustainability | Tagged | Leave a comment

Bill Gates is way off base on MEAT!

As he casually hastens the end of our civilization

bill-gatesToward the end of his 4-21-15 blogpost, Bill Gates sums up the meat situation as follows:

How can we make enough meat without destroying the planet?—one solution would be to ask the biggest carnivores (Americans and others) to cut back, by as much as half. Although it might be possible to get people in richer countries to eat less or shift toward less-intensive meats like chicken, I don’t think it’s realistic to expect large numbers of people to make drastic reductions. Evolution turned us into omnivores.

But there are reasons to be optimistic. For one thing, the world’s appetite for meat may eventually level off. Consumption has plateaued and even declined a bit in many rich countries, including France, Germany, and the United States. I also believe that innovation will improve our ability to produce meat. Cheaper energy and better crop varieties will drive up agricultural productivity, especially in Africa, so we won’t have to choose as often between feeding animals and feeding people.

I’m also hopeful about the future of meat substitutes. I have invested in some companies working on this and am impressed with the results so far. Smil is skeptical that it will have a big impact—and it is true that today the best products are sold mostly in fancy grocery stores—but I think it has potential. 

With a little moderation and more innovation, I do believe the world can meet its need for meat.

My response to this disturbing conclusion by one of the most influential people in the world was posted on his blog-site this morning:

J. Morris Hicks, always trying to focus on the big picture.

J. Morris Hicks, always trying to focus on the big picture.

Dear Mr. Gates,

It’s a real tragedy when one of the most influential people in the world is so terribly misguided on such a crucial topic. To conclude that “with a little moderation and more innovation, I do believe the world can meet its need for meat” is shockingly irresponsible. First of all, the world has no “need” for meat, it only has “demand” because that’s what people want. And unless we drastically reduce that “demand” during the next few years, we’re going to soon render our fragile ecosystem incapable of sustaining us as a species.

I suggest that you seek the counsel of one of Microsoft’s employees on this most crucial of all topics. His name is Dr. Stephen Emmott and he runs “computational science” in the UK. I met with him there in 2013, shortly after his book, TEN BILLION, was published. In that book, he described a terrifying chain of events that is happening right now. And, as he says, unless we make some radical changes in the way we live, our civilization will most definitely collapse well before 2100. He also agreed with me that changing what we eat (specifically animal-based foods) is a HUGE part of the “radical” change that is needed.

You may disagree with Dr. Emmott, but you should at least seek his counsel before posting something that could have such a devastating effect on the future of our species. You must remember that, while you are no expert on this topic, you have the ability to influence the behavior of billions of people–because of your fame, reputation and your own billions of dollars.

Promoting health, hope and harmony on planet Earth

Promoting health, hope & harmony on planet Earth

Finally, I have been researching this topic since 2002 and have concluded that, without a doubt, the most important issue in the history of humanity is our food choices in the 21st century. It’s the only part of the way we live that we can change quickly.

We don’t have time to curb overpopulation, change the way our economy works or ease our dependence on fossil fuels. But we do have time to change what we eat–almost anyone in the developed world can do that overnight AND be a lot healthier for it. And by simply changing what we eat, we can buy the time we need to fix those other unsustainable aspects of the way we humans are living.

Best regards, J. Morris Hicks, author, “Healthy Eating, Healthy World.”

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. eCornell is now using our survey in their plant-based nutrition course. Check it out on your smartphone at eCornell.com/4Leaf-Survey.

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 Program and also enjoy some great recipes from Lisa’s 4Leaf Kitchen.

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

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

Nutrition Certificate

Posted in Activism & Leadership, Sustainability | Tagged | 4 Comments

My letter to a U. S. Senator. Subject: Food Choices

Searching for powerful leadership to address the all-important FOOD issue.

Senate SealThis past weekend, I saw a news item about a friend and former business colleague that I have known for over forty years. I had followed the campaign that led to his election and,  now that he’s completed his first 100 days as a member of one of the most exclusive groups in the world, I decided to send him a note.

I am providing this letter as a template for anyone who might want to send a similar letter to one of their own elected officials at any level. If you are successful in gaining an audience with some of those people, let me know if you’d like for me to join you for that all-important first meeting.

I am not mentioning the addressee by name, simply because he is a personal friend and his name is not relevant to the purpose of this letter–to help you reach out to your own elected officials.

May 16, 2015

Hi Dave,

First of all, congratulations on being elected to the U. S. Senate—and successfully completing your first 100 days in office. I am proud to call you my friend. Although I am not one of your constituents (reside in CT), I do have family and many friends in Georgia and I enjoy following your progress there in the Senate.

Just read your note about lack of urgency. That’s something that I write and/or speak about every day. The fact is that NONE of our world leaders are urgently addressing our most critical issues. On that topic, please take a minute to read this one pager regarding the most important issue in the history of humanity. As a Georgia Tech engineer and seasoned business executive, I am sure that you’ll quickly grasp the “big picture” disaster that we humans have on our hands.

One-page Recipe for Saving Our Ecosystem — an industrial engineer’s guide to saving our species; it describes the most important executive search assignment of my career.

To better understand our “big picture” global dilemma, I recommend that you take just one hour to read Dr. Stephen Emmott’s TEN BILLION. He runs computational science for Microsoft (based in the UK) and I met with him in late 2013. He doesn’t describe the solution in his book, but he does a superb job of describing the problem. And he agrees that what I am proposing would have “an incredibly huge positive impact on our ecosystem.”

Finally, I know that you’ve been elected to look after the needs of the people of Georgia, but I ask you, “What could be more important to them than the survival of our civilization?” Since you say you’re not going to become a Washington “insider,” perhaps you could lead a global coalition to start making a lot of noise about all of the above. I continue to reach out to powerful leaders everywhere on this URGENT topic–including Pope Francis. So far, no one has risen to the challenge.

I would be happy to come down to Washington or Georgia to discuss all of this with you in more detail at your convenience. Just let me know. 

Best regards, Jim

Do you know any prominent leaders? I am serious about attending a meeting with you if you think that it would help. Let me know if you have someone in mind.

Senate

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. eCornell is now using our survey in their plant-based nutrition course. Check it out on your smartphone at eCornell.com/4Leaf-Survey.

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 Program and also enjoy some great recipes from Lisa’s 4Leaf Kitchen.

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

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

Nutrition Certificate

Posted in Activism & Leadership, Sustainability | Tagged | 3 Comments

My relentless drum-beat continues.

Beginning today with the fact that our solar system is just one of 100 billion.

Planet Earth with moon

And scientists estimate that many of them could possibly support life. So, does that mean that, like in the movie Avatar, we can take over one of those planets after we’ve run out of natural resources here on planet Earth? No, it definitely does not.

While reading E.O. Wilson’s “The Meaning of Human Existence,” I learned that there are an estimated 100 billion star systems out there, with each of them having at least one planet in orbit around it. I also learned that, in order to support life, the planet must be in what scientists call the “Goldilocks” zone–meaning that its orbit is not to far away from its sun and not too close, but rather, “just right.”

So I got to wondering how many of those other 100 billion planets are in the Goldilocks Zone? According to Wikipedia data (see link below), there are a lot more of them than you might think–maybe as many as 40 billion. Surely, a few of them have intelligent life. E.O. Wilson estimates that maybe 4 or 5 of them do. If so, that brings up the prospect of building trading relationships with them or conquering them, right? Not very likely.

The nearest one is twelve light years away. So how long would it take us to travel there? I if we could travel at the speed of light, a round-trip would take 24 years. Light travels at 186,000 miles per second, or about 670 million miles per hour. By contrast, the satellites in orbit around the Earth travel at just 17,000 miles an hour.  Even if we could travel at just 1/10 the speed of light (67 million miles per hour), a round trip to that nearest Goldilocks planet would take 240 years.

How feasible is travel to other planets that can support life? Almost nil with today’s travel technology. And even if we could get there and back in 24 years, the likelihood of finding a complete biosphere there that could support us is also close to nil.

My conclusion that I will never quit talking about:

Our Biosphere

Our Biosphere

We only have one planet and we must learn to live in harmony with the overall ecosystem of that planet. That system of nature has four components and our future as a species depends on the harmonious interaction of all four:

  1. Atmosphere (the air we breathe)
  2. Hydrosphere (the water)
  3. Cryosphere (ice and glaciers)
  4. Biosphere (plants and animals)

Under the banner of more people leading a better quality of life, human activity has thrown this entire interconnected system seriously out of balance and it continues to get worse. Much worse. We’re heating and polluting the atmosphere, hydrosphere and cryosphere. And we continue to destroy many of the millions of species of plants and animals (our biosphere) with reckless abandon–leading to an unprecedented rate of species extinction, now running at over 1,000 times the normal rate.

We seem to have forgotten that all things are connected in nature as we seem hellbent on destroying our precious ecosystem that gives us life. What’s it going to take for us to return to living in harmony with nature? A lot more than recycling newspapers, taking shorter showers and driving electric cars.

Ten BillionAs Stephen Emmott points out in TEN BILLION, what is needed is a RADICAL change in human behavior. Yet, there are exactly ZERO world leaders who have even begun to talk about radical change. What we have is an overall “system” that is selfishly grabbing what’s left of our natural resources to support a grossly unsustainable way of life.

The Bottom Line.  I have concluded that the ONLY pragmatic way to get us moving in the right direction is to begin an URGENT effort to move rapidly in the direction of a plant-based diet for all humans. You see, our food choices determine how most of the world is being used and we ran out of available farmland many years ago.

It took 200,000 years for humans to get to reach a population of one billion. Since then, with the help of the agricultural and scientific revolutions, in just over 200 years, we’ve added 6.3 billion people and taken over the entire globe to produce our food and other “stuff” that we consume.

Since animal-based foods (on a per calorie basis) require over ten times as much land, water and energy as do plant-based foods, any move in the direction toward more plants and fewer animals will result in HUGE improvements to our ecosystem. And, it just might buy us enough time to work on other issues that continue to drive us away from living in harmony with nature: overpopulation, overconsumption and dependence on fossil fuels.

The cost of global depletion is a tough lesson to learn.

The cost of global depletion is a tough lesson to learn.

The people of Easter Island had a similar situation about one thousand years ago. After they squandered their natural resources, their ecosystem collapsed–followed closely by their civilization. The humans themselves were nearing extinction when the Dutch explorers discovered their island on Easter Sunday in 1722.

We can learn from those unfortunate souls. Like them, we only have one home. (For more on Easter Island, see my first blog on the list below.)

What can you do? Like I said in a recent post, you can start by getting the “animal out of the equation” in your own diet. You can also become a part of this discussion. You can ask other people to look at the simple arithmetic that any 3rd grader could understand. You can challenge the “leaders” that you know about the unsustainable nature of our lifestyle. You can ask them why no one in power ANYWHERE is talking about this most crucial of all topics. Finally, you can invite me to speak at your company, church, university or club.

Why do I continue to harp on this subject like a relentless drum beat every day? One reason is that I am preparing myself for an upcoming meeting that a colleague and I will soon be having with a very prominent and highly respected leader. We believe that this particular man has the requisite combination of integrity, conviction, courage, resources, leadership skills and popularity–to organize and lead a global coalition aimed at urgently promoting the health of our ecosystem that gives us life. If that meeting is a success, you will hear all about it. Maybe he’ll even be able to get us that meeting with the Pope.

Source Information. Here’s an excerpt from the Wikipedia page mentioned earlier. Below this information is a link to that page and a few links to some of my earlier blogs on the topic of sustainability.

Finding Earth-sized Goldilocks planets is a key part of the Kepler Mission, which uses a space telescope (launched on 7 March 2009 UTC) to survey and compile the characteristics of habitable-zone planets.[3] On 4 November 2013, astronomers reported, based on Kepler space mission data, that there could be as many as 40 billion Earth-sized planets orbiting in the habitable zones of sun-like stars and red dwarf stars within the Milky Way Galaxy.[4][5] 11 billion of these estimated planets may be orbiting sun-like stars.[6] The nearest such planet may be 12 light-years away, according to the scientists.[4][5]

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. eCornell is now using our survey in their plant-based nutrition course. Check it out on your smartphone at eCornell.com/4Leaf-Survey.

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 Program and also enjoy some great recipes from Lisa’s 4Leaf Kitchen.

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

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

Nutrition Certificate

Posted in Activism & Leadership, Sustainability | Tagged | 2 Comments