BThe Food Revolution Summit just wrapped up this past weekend. In case you did not get a chance to listen, you can tune into the re-broadcast here. Mindy and I have listened to this event every year for the last five years. The speakers are visionary and engaging experts in their respective fields. Most are doctors that have bucked the traditional medical system and are helping their patients heal through the power of food choices. The program always gets me motivated to help people understand the power of diet to harm and heal. If you listened to all nine days, you get the sense that the medical community is FINALLY embracing the most important aspect of healing: The food you eat every day. How could you NOT be motivated to lean into a plant-based diet after listening to these medical thought leaders describe how their patients bring themselves back to health and off drugs simply by transitioning to a plant-based diet. These patients are going into remission and being CURED of heart disease and diabetes. Cancer is more problematic, but a plant-based can even start the healing process of this most dreaded disease.
In juxtaposition, I also subscribe to the daily JAMA Online First newsletter, and I get an update in my inbox daily. Over the last eight days of the FRN summit, there was not one single published paper or article from JAMA that addresses the most critical issue related to chronic illness in our country: The food you eat every day. Not one single article, mention or link on food or nutrition from either.
Here are the highlights from the JAMA Cardiology newsletter from April 28th of this year:
- Assessment of Catheter Ablation or Antiarrhythmic Drugs for First-line Therapy of Atrial Fibrillation: A Meta-analysis of Randomized Clinical Trials
- Performance of the American Heart Association/American College of Cardiology Pooled Cohort Equations to Estimate Atherosclerotic Cardiovascular Disease Risk by Self-reported Physical Activity Levels
- Statin Prescribing and Dosing—Failure Has Become an Option
- Weight Gain After Smoking Cessation and Risk of Major Chronic Diseases and Mortality
- Electrocardiogram Alarm for Mediastinum Metastasis in a Patient With Lung Cancer
It’s like this every single day. Heart disease is a diet disease, and no one in the heart disease medical community seems to care much. After all, how can you get a juicy sponsorship from a drug company if you don’t talk up drugs? Big Broccoli is NOT going to step in!
We now know that the vast majority of heart disease and cancer that plague the wealthiest country in the world is directly related to diet. (You may have noticed that the link is to a JAMA paper from 2017). The vast majority of medical professionals are busy addressing these diet-related chronic illnesses without the critical education and understanding of the diet/disease connection. Think about it. Our entire medical system completely ignores the most crucial prescription anyone with a chronic disease should get: Change to an evidence-based diet that addresses the root cause of the issue. There is nothing about diet in my daily updates from the most prestigious medical journal in the world. It is a giant embarrassing black hole in our broken medical system, and this void exists primarily because of one component: Money. Money is the primary driver in our health care system, not health. We have created a care system that cares more about corporate profits for pharmaceutical and medical device companies than about people’s health.
Our rates of heart disease, cancer, diabetes, and obesity continue to rise. Our life expectancy continues to head down. And corporate medical profits continue to soar. Make no mistake, the motivation is money, not health. It’s just ridiculous, and it drives me crazy.
As long as profit is the primary motivator in our medical system, we will continue cultivating a robust disease management system instead of a health care system.
I’m ten days or so into hormone therapy for advanced prostate cancer, and I don’t feel any different. No hot flashes (which I consistently had on my two previous regimes with Lupron), and my energy and mental state are about the same as before (which is pretty darn good). I even had great sex this weekend with my wonderful wife with a nice woody! Blood test when we get back from Hawaii- I’ll post the results!