I Love Nutritional Science: Dr. Joel Fuhrman at TEDxCharlottesville 2013

I Love Nutritional Science: Dr. Joel Fuhrman at TEDxCharlottesville 2013

November 9, 2019 100 By Jose Scott


Translator: Hélène Vernet
Reviewer: Peter van de Ven Thank you. I love nutritional science. I’ve had a passion about nutrition
since I was young. I remember that my father suffered
with medical problems and pains, conditions the medical profession
couldn’t help him with, and he searched for answers. Finally, he changed his diet,
lost 50 pounds and got well. In the process of seeing him
suffering and searching, I found excitement and developed
interest in the subject. He’d brought 50 nutritional books
into the home, and I read them all. Then, in the early 1970s, I was on the United States
world figure skating team, and I got hurt, and I couldn’t
walk for over a year. I spent some time in a natural health, in a kind of natural health retreat watching people get well
who changed their diet styles, and I got excited about what I saw. I remember at my sister’s
graduation party from college, I met an attractive young woman who told me she applied
to go to medical school. And I debated with her. I said, “What do you want go
to medical school for? Doctors mostly prescribe
medications for conditions that are a result of the toxic diet
Americans are eating.” It’s like hitting yourself
with a hammer every day and giving your hand a big smash;
then it gets swollen and full of pain. Then you go to a doctor
and get pain medications for it, and the next day you take
a big hammer and smack it again! It’s the toxic American lifestyle that’s resulting in all these diseases
driving people into the doctors’ offices. The toxic foods we’re eating
are the hammer. You don’t want to go to a doctor if you’ve breathing problems
from smoking cigarettes, and he gives you a drug
to help you breathe better and you still continue to smoke;
that’s what Americans are doing. So this young woman said to me, “If you’re so passionate
about this subject, why don’t you go to medical school? Why don’t you change things?
Why don’t you help people?” I obviously thought about that and said,
“You know, I’ve got to do that.” I quit my job as an executive
in my family’s chain of shoe stores. I went back to the postgraduate
premedical program at Columbia after college. I went to medical school,
and I’m here to tell you about the excitement,
the rewarding experience, and to give you a taste of the things
I’ve seen and the fun I’ve had. I want to show you six representative cases
of people who changed their life, to show you the power
of a “nutriterian diet.” But before I do, let me give you maybe a two-minute overview
of what a nutriterian diet is, because a nutriterian diet
is a diet style that’s designed to be rich in nutrients and full
of antioxidants and phytochemicals. It’s a diet style with a high
nutrient-per-calorie density. Your healthy life expectancy is determined on the foods
you choose to eat. You have to get sufficient nutrient
bang for each caloric buck. But you know, when you do so, when you flood your body
with the nutrients it needs, it doesn’t just make you healthy
and live long or prevent disease, it stops food addictions
and food cravings, normalizes your appetite, and makes your body gravitate
towards your ideal weight, effortlessly. It’s the secret for most of what ails us. A nutriterian diet, sure,
it’s rich in nutrients, with an adequate amount
of what we need nutrient-wise, but it is also very different from the style Americans
are eating right now. Americans are eating a diet that’s dramatically
nutritionally deficient. Americans are eating a diet with 55% of calories
from processed and refined foods that don’t contain vitamins,
minerals and phytochemicals, and 30% of animal products. A diet with less than 5% of calories
from fruits and vegetables and natural, nutrient-rich produce
aside from white potato – we’re only eating about 5%
of vegetation and produce – couldn’t be better designed
to create a nation full of diseases like heart attacks, strokes,
dementia and cancer, had it be designed by Al-Qaeda. (Laughter) Besides the fact of what it’s lacking, a “nutritarian” diet is also designed to be low in those hormones
that promote cancer and aging, hormones like excessive amounts of insulin
and excessive amounts of IGF-1, that’s Insulin-like Growth factor-1,
the primary hormone that promotes cancers like breast cancer and prostate cancer. I say, “The whiter the bread,
the sooner you’re dead,” (Laughter) because the more you eat
sooths like sugar and white flour, the more it promotes
weight gain and cancer. And I say, “The more you eat green,
the more you get lean,” because if you eat more greens
and beans and less meat, it lowers IGF-1, which stops
cancer in its tracks and doesn’t promote
the progression of fat on your body and cancer-cell proliferation. We have a unique opportunity
in human History, today, with the exponential advances
in nutritional science that have given us the power,
the power of G-bombs – G-B-O-M-B-S – these foods I call our
“Immune System Special Forces” – greens, beans, onions,
mushrooms, berries and seeds – these foods that inhibit
fat storage on the body, foods that prevent cancer,
foods that prolong our lifespan. The details of that is not my message
or the purpose of this presentation. These people are. Let me show you the power
of what a nutritarian diet can do. Here’s Robert. I never met Robert;
he just read one of my books. Robert was in a wheelchair. Today, not only is he not in a wheelchair,
he can work all day on his feet. Robert had rheumatoid arthritis
and was on four highly toxic drugs to reduce his pain
from rheumatoid arthritis. Today, he has no rheumatoid arthritis.
He’s off all his toxic medications. He no longer has diabetes,
heart disease and high blood pressure. He’s off those medications too. The main story here is not merely
that he lost 200 pounds, the story is that Robert
no longer has medical conditions. He no longer has rheumatoid arthritis
like millions of Americans do. The point here is you don’t have
to be sick and be suffering and be tied to medications
for the rest of your life. Take Heather. Heather is another person
who suffered most of her life. She suffered with terrible, horrible
headaches and migraines most of her life. She even took pills that cost $100
for each single individual pill, and she still had headaches all day long. She suffered of course with allergies
and insomnia and anxiety and was also on multiple medications. Heather lost 75 pounds. She wrote me a letter,
an email, and she said, “You know, I’m all better. It’s the greatest feeling in the world,
never to suffer of headaches anymore. I don’t have insomnia; I don’t need pills
for depression and anxiety anymore. I’m well. I don’t have menstrual pain.” She said, “The wonderful thing
is when you fix the whole body, everything gets taken care of
simultaneously.” It makes you think of all the people
that are suffering and have been told they have to be on medication for the rest
of their life with no way out. Then, there’s Donna from Kentucky. Stories like this,
I hear a hundred times a month. She was in so much pain, she couldn’t
get out of bed or off the couch. When she was diagnosed with fibromyalgia,
her rheumatologist told her that she’d have to take these medications
for pain for the rest of her life. Of course, Donna Depp got well.
She lost 62 pounds in the process. She is feeling well,
and she made the effort to take the drive from Kentucky
up to New Jersey where I was having one
of my weekend immersion programs, she came up specifically to meet me
and to talk to me and thank me. It is so rewarding, wonderful and warm to meet these people
who have recovered their health. She said to me, “I was a food addict. You know, for 20 years
I tried one diet after another, and I knew I was in a downward spiral
I couldn’t get out of.” Her life was unhappy and she felt
completely hopeless with it. She said she felt like
she was a failure, and I said, “Donna, you’re not a failure. It’s the information you were given
that has failed you. With the right information,
you have the ability to be set free, to take control of your life,
to get rid of your food addictions.” It’s wonderful to meet these people. You see their happiness
and their gratitude. Sometimes, you can almost feel
like your tears come to the eyes when you hear some of these stories. Here is Ronnie from Texas,
a perfect example. Ronnie had a heart disease and had a bypass surgery
about six years ago. Within four years
after his bypass surgery, his vessels clogged up again
and got fully occluded with plaque. Then he proceeded to have angioplasty. Within a few months after angioplasty,
he could develop restenosis and now he all couldn’t walk,
had tremendous chest pain, was on multiple medications;
he was literally sent home to die. I’d never met Ronnie either. He read my books and he communicated
with me through the website. Ronnie lost 140 pounds in one year,
which isn’t the story. The story is that
his chest pains went away, he’s now fit, healthy,
has no heart disease. He doesn’t have high cholesterol
but great cholesterol and no drugs. He has normal blood pressure. He’s not on three medications
like he used to be, but on no blood pressure medications. His weight is normal. He is feeling well. He achieved these numbers
to protect himself without the use of medications,
that’s how we know now he’s protected. He truly reversed his condition
and knows he’s protected for his future. The message here
is that scientific studies show that angioplasty and bypass surgery
don’t enable people to live longer. Those who go through those procedures
don’t live longer than those who don’t, with the same degree of disease. They don’t prevent future heart attacks,
they’re just a temporary band-aid to make people feel better
for a temporary period of time. Why aren’t people told this?
Why don’t people know? Why doesn’t everyone know
they don’t have to have heart attacks, they don’t have to have strokes, that these diseases
are reversible relatively easily? Ronnie was set free. Jodie from nearby here,
right in North Carolina. Jodie suffered with psoriasis
for many years. Actually, she suffered
from psoriatic arthritis, which is like a mixture of psoriasis
and rheumatoid arthritis that could involve itchy rash
over your whole body plus joint pains. By the time Jodie was 50 years old,
she had the rash over her whole body, including an itchy rash
inside her ears, from head to toe. She was on multiple medications, including
Prednisone, Plaquenil, Methotrexate, to try to suppress
the autoimmune conditions. Autoimmune diseases like this
affect 24 million Americans. The most prevalent one is psoriasis, which affects more
than 7.5 million Americans. Jodie has been well for the last 12 years. She doesn’t have psoriatic arthritis
nor psoriasis anymore, her skin is clear. By the time she first got diagnosed
with psoriasis when she was a teenager, soon after, she got diagnosed
with lupus, Sjogren’s syndrome, and eventually, the joint pain
of psoriatic arthritis. After being in pain
for more than 25 years, being on medications
that hardly gave her any relief, she found out how she could
finally get well, and she did. I remember we have these health getaways where I take a lot of people
on these vacations. We eat healthy and teach
them about nutrition. Jodie came with us to Utah
to climb the Red Mountains. We took a bunch of people,
and we walked up this huge mountain. We got to the top,
and it was like a thrill to see the beautiful countryside
at the top of this mountain. Jodi got to the highest point of that peak
and put her arms up in the air like a “V” for Victory, and she said,
“Look at me, I’m a medical miracle!” I said to Jodie, “You know Jodie,
I’m so proud of you, but it’s not a medical miracle. It’s the inherent
self-repairing, miraculous, protective self-healing machine
the human body is already when it is fed optimally. Your body takes care of itself,
just like when you cut yourself. It’s the health that you
always had the right to that was taken away from you.” And number six, the last person
we will talk about, is John Polikowski. And I bring him up, John from New Jersey, because my office
is in New Jersey, and again, I saw him as a patient more than
20 years ago when he was 72 years old. He too had triple vessel
disease in his heart and chest pain where he couldn’t walk
without significant pain. He actually had worked
with a cardiologist, and the cardiologist set him up
for a stress test, a cardiac catheterization, and he was scheduled for angioplasty
and stent placement. I pleaded with him and I convinced him. I said, “John, give me
12 weeks of your life to show you that you can get back
in good health again, because once you put those stents in,
you’re never going to be the same. It’s going to be a source of inflammation, it’s going to promote more stenosis
and more plaque in your heart. Let’s get rid of it, here’s our chance!
Give me 12 weeks.” In 12 weeks time,
his chest pains were gone; he lost 40 pounds; he didn’t have high blood pressure
and his three medications had dropped too. He went back to see his cardiologist. The cardiologist says to him,
“Oh my goodness, John, I’ve never seen anybody reverse
heart disease nutritionally, and have it melt away like this,
this is amazing!” Can you imagine a cardiologist, who does nothing except
see patients with heart conditions, never once ever saw a patient reverse
their heart disease with nutrition? When that’s all I see: every patient
gets better relatively quickly. You know … What’s the story
here with John? The story is, now, 20 years later,
John is 92 years old. Over the years, he’s gotten
healthier and healthier. He doesn’t have any heart disease now. He chops wood. He climbs up
and fixes his roof. He enjoys his life. He doesn’t take medications in his 90’s
that he needed in his 60’s and 70’s. You follow that? He has normal blood
pressure now, normal cholesterol. He’s earned these things.
He hasn’t been well for 90 years. My point is that water runs off
the waterfall and hits a rock. Then after 20,000 years,
the rock breaks in two. But the rock didn’t age. It got hit by water
day after day for 20,000 years. When you develop the problems
that most Americans get, you get those problems
because day after day, you’ve put stresses on your tissues from eating the wrong foods
that we shouldn’t be eating, from living a diet style
and a lifestyle of stresses that impact you negatively
day after day, year after year. This is not the natural
consequence of ageing. Heart attacks, strokes and dementia
doesn’t have to happen. We don’t have to have heart disease. All of us could be free of that
if we so choose. As a matter of fact,
most cardiologists can then become lawyers, electricians and plumbers! (Laughter) Nevertheless, here’s the point. My message to you today is that, sure, nutritional science has made
exponential advances in recent years – I love nutritional science – but the point is it’s not just preventive. Sure, we don’t have
to have heart attacks, we don’t have to have strokes
or get demented. And yes, we can win the war on cancer:
we have the information right now in the studies that show
the body is protective against cancer. We can make these choices
and have better health than ever before possible
in human History. And my point for today is that nutritional excellence,
a “nutriterian” diet, is therapeutically more effective
than medications for almost every medical condition, and the results can literally
touch your heart. And that’s my message for today. And you know? That woman, that pretty young woman who spurred me on to go
to medical school, back 35 years ago? Well, I married her. (Laughter) Now, I am married for 32 years. I’ve four wonderful children. And I am on a mission to share
the power of nutritional excellence. So I’m wishing you all you reach
your dreams and pursue your passions, and have much happiness
and great health always because it can be yours. Thank you. (Applause)