When people visit their doctor and find out they may have high blood pressure, high cholesterol, the beginning stages of diabetes, not to mention their weight has consistently been on the rise, the first thing the doctor will say is, "watch your diet and take this pill". Watch your diet? What does that mean?
Unfortunately, physicians are trained to diagnose a disease and "treat" it with a pill. Physicians spend years getting their education...however, 4-6 HOURS is dedicated to NUTRITIONAL EDUCATION. Four to six hours, not days, weeks or months, but hours. In the past, doctors did not know the impact that diet had on so many diseases....they thought one thing had nothing to do with the other. However, with all the years of scientific research and thousands of studies conducted, they now realize nutrition has everything to do with a person's health.
It was once thought that heart disease was a one-way street. Once you had it, you had it for good. Doctors prescribe medications and perform various surgical procedures postponing the inevitable for as long as possible. But, back in 1990, Dr. Dean Ornish, a pioneer in heart disease, was not satisfied with chronic medication use and extremely expensive surgeries that were only really treating symptoms, not CURING the disease. So, Dr. Ornish came up with a program that required a patient to follow four simple steps:
- Eat a vegetarian diet
- Start a mild exercise program (at least a 1/2 hour walk each day)
- Follow simple stress management techniques
- Quit smoking
That was it! No drugs, no angioplasty, no stents, none of the invasive methods that are now considered "routine" in cardiology today. The program was relatively simple....his patients FLOURISHED!!! They lost weight quickly and for the most part, permanently. Their chest pain was gone, and when their arteries were examined again by an angiogram,(baseline angiograms were performed as a baseline), the results made medical history. Arteries that were narrowed with plaque began to reopen, so much so that the changes were clearly evident in 82% of patients in the FIRST YEAR! THIS IS THE POWER OF NUTRITION!! Dr. Ornish's program proved to work so well, that several insurance companies now pay for patients to go through his program....that is unheard of! However, do you realize how much money Dr. Ornish saves the insurance companies? The cost of drugs are phenomenal, not to mention the cost of stress tests, angiograms, cardiac catheterizations, stents, bypass surgery, cardiac rehab after surgery.....this list just keeps on going.
Heart disease has been the #1 Killer in America and it continues to be. It doesn't have to be.....it is PREVENTABLE. By eating a Whole-Food Plant-Based diet, not only will you heart-attack proof yourself, but you will be protecting yourself from all kinds of illnesses and diseases....cancers, stroke, kidney disease, diabetes (which has now become an epidemic), obesity, allergies, GI issues, etc., etc., etc.
The way to optimal health is eating vegetables, fruits, beans, and whole-grains because they DO NOT CARRY THE LOAD OF FAT you were previously eating in animal products....meat, poultry, cheese, eggs, etc. Researchers have found that plant based diets reduce blood pressure quickly---most of the time in the FIRST WEEK, with significant improvement within 6 weeks, but in the majority of cases it's much sooner than that. Remember, high blood pressure is dangerous...it's important to have it checked and if you are currently on medication, do not stop them on your own. As your diet improves, your blood pressure will drop...however, your physician will tell you when it's safe to come off medication.
Being able to discontinue medication not only applies to blood pressure medication, it applies to medications for cholesterol and diabetes, along with all the other medications you may be taking. It really does sound too simple, but believe me, nutrition is the answer to most of our health issues today.
As I alway say, GIVE YOUR BODY WHAT IT NEEDS AND IT WILL HEAL ITSELF.....