First Oprah, now Dr. Oz — the movement of the western world back to the natural diet for our species is beginning to gain some traction with the mainstream…albeit ever so slowly. With Dr. T. Colin Campbell, Dr. Caldwell Esselstyn and Dr. Neal Barnard as guests on his April 27 show, Dr. Mehmet Oz devoted much of the hour to a comprehensive review of the why and how questions around a whole foods, plant-based diet.
But as he said in the program, “Notice that I haven’t used the word diet here. That’s because we’re talking about a whole new way of looking at how we eat. Sure, you’ll lose weight, but that’s not what this is all about.”
With the new Forks Over Knives movie opening in theaters across the country next week, Dr. Oz promoted the movie by interviewing the two primary stars: Dr. T. Colin Campbell of Cornell and Dr. Caldwell Esselstyn of the Cleveland Clinic.
Dr. Campbell spoke very briefly about plant-based eating with regards to preventing or reversing cancer and Dr. Esselstyn (See book) did the same regarding heart disease. As usual, Dr. Esselstyn referred to our nation’s #1 killer as a “toothless paper tiger that need never exist.” Then the show shifted quickly to a review of the foods involved with author Rip Esselstyn (See photo) and Dr. Neal Barnard, both of whom were also in the movie.
Finally, about halfway through the show, Dr. Oz asked Dr. Neal Barnard the famous protein question, “If you’re not eating any meat, dairy or fish, where do we get our protein?” Now, maybe Dr. Oz knew the answer but was just asking it because he knew that millions of viewers were wondering about protein when they saw that the diet-style being proposed included ONLY plants. But after hearing more, I’m thinking that like over 90% of all Americans, even Dr. Oz was thinking that we really do “need” to eat some animal products in order to be healthy. (See protein page)
Dr. Oz went on to say that his wife was a vegetarian and that he eats no red meat but that seafood was very important to him and that they had featured the benefits of fish on the show many times. Dr. Barnard replied that while fish does have omega-3 fats, it also is loaded with other unhealthful fats and cholesterol and that it was missing the things that we need — key things like fiber, vitamin C and phytonutrients that are only found in plants. (See related post on fish)
Great show — good information — good promotion for the movie….BUT my question is this.
Where’s the urgency? Campbell and Esselstyn talked candidly about reversing heart disease and cancer, yet those comments were almost lost in the shuffle. We’re talking about the nation’s top two killers. We’re talking about a toxic diet that is driving up to 80% of our $2.7 trillion cost of health care. Yet there was no feeling of urgency.
My next question is: “Where does the Dr. Oz Show go from here? He featured a diet-style on Wednesday’s show that has the power to end most disease in this country. So what does he do on Thursday as a follow-up? Does he just go back to the endless discussions of a zillion medical problems? Or does he get real serious about the “big picture” root of 80% of our medical problems? Like a blinding flash of the obvious – it’s right under our noses. It’s what we put in our mouth everyday.
Does he get real serious about getting the truth about nutrition out to the millions of Americans who are about to be diagnosed with cancer or heart disease — are about to undergo serious procedures — and have not been told about the power of simple whole plants to either prevent, slow, arrest or completely reverse BOTH?
I just got a sad note this week from a reader who didn’t learn about the truth in The China Study until AFTER she was diagnosed with breast cancer AND had a double mastectomy. She now wants to know, “When is our government, mainstream medicine, and academia going to get serious about addressing the causes of our disease instead of just treating the symptoms?”
Sadly the answer to her question is up to us. We are forming the grassroots revolution that will demand change in the future. While taking charge of our own health, we plant the seeds of change that will enable millions to get the word – before it’s too late. Thank you Dr. Oz for opening the door, now we must keep telling the story.
Earlier in this blog, I stated that I wondered what Dr. Oz would do next; my concern was well-founded — as he went back to the same old garbage a few days later. The next week, he was almost like a huckster for the dangerous low carb, Dukan Diet. Take a look.
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—J. Morris Hicks…blogging daily at HealthyEatingHealthyWorld.com
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Thank you for calling him out on this with the Esselstyn/Campbell Diet. A friend just told me Dr. Oz had a show about using “red palm oil,” and that would lower cholesterol. So I asked her, “If so, then does it negate the cholesterol if I have a steak?” And she replied, “I guess so….” But I said it made no logical sense. And it seems that every show there’s a new “one shot deal” in “health.” I am currently doing the Esselstyn diet, although I good-naturedly call it the “Bill Clinton Diet,” because he’s on it. That’s how I learned about the diet was when Bill Clinton was being interviewed for something else and I hadn’t seen him for awhile on TV, so I noticed how his skin looked so clear and pink, and he seemed so healthy. I wondered what he was doing. In the middle of the interview he was asked, “I hear you’ve become a Vegan? How is that?” And Bill answered that he loved his grains, and beans and veggies and fruit. His whole purpose was to live longer. That’s the key and it should not be glossed over.
I just started on this diet and it IS hard because there are no oils, no fats, no nuts, no dairy (which I didn’t eat anyway, so that’s no so hard for me), no processed foods, no foods with any fat at all (which excludes many things), and you do pretty much have to make everything from scratch. I haven’t had my blood work done yet, so we’ll see. But it made a lot of sense, and the China Study is amazing, and I do not know why this seems to be such a secret. I had to look up what diet Bill Clinton was following and that’s how I discovered it. I am so glad you pointed out the folly of mentioning a remarkable diet that appears to work if followed correctly, and then the other tossed in “diets” or “health foods” of the day. It is sad, because had I known about the China Study years ago (ironically, I just returned from China and they are very Westernized now….), I would have changed then. You are doing a service keeping this post up and informing people. Thank you!
I wish I would have seen this show. I am a big proponent of real food. In fact, I insist my real children eat real food. My latest blog entry was on just this! Slowly, but surely, plant-based thinking will become more mainstream. Thanks for keeping the fire lit.
Dr. Oz recently had Dr. Fuhrman on his show, too. Dr. F. was introduced without fanfare. There was no mention of his giant fan base, nor was there a real feel for what he offers. Not once did Dr. Oz mention any of his book titles! The term “nutritarian” was glossed over. Dr. Oz even started the blender while Dr. F. was talking. The show tried to sensationalize everything else about what Dr. F. offered, as “GOMBBS” became “BOMBS” and the 6-week plan somehow morphed into a ___ -day-crash-diet-guaranteed-to-help-people-lose-weight. I still don’t know what that “diet” actually was (besides uncalled for) as it was so far from what Dr. F’s “Eat to Live” plan is. Dr. Fuhrman did a great job on the show and I am sure he won a few new fans, and Dr. Oz had a great opportunity to do something great, but flopped … in the meantime, Dr. Oz lost a fan in me.
Regarding your post above, I wonder how hard it is to stay true to your mission once Hollywood and Madison Avenue begin to dangle endorsements in front of you? Who knows, there might even be brawn from the dairy or meat or GMO people behind the information sourcing, too. I wonder if I could hold up to my convictions under the pressures of money, fame and muscle myself. Thanks for the insights and asking the questions!
Is doctor oz off the air? Can’t find him any more. Where did he go? I used to get him on Channel 4 in MIchigan. Is he ill?