Friday, July 27, 2012
Forks Over Knives
"The doctor of the future will give no medicine but will interest his patients in the care of the human frame, in diet and in the cause and prevention of disease."
My husband, who is a GI doc, is big into watching documentaries. Our latest Netflix delivery was a film titled Forks Over Knives. I may be out of touch, but I have never heard of it before. Surprisingly, the film was very good and brought up some important topics. We all remember the food pyramid from when we were growing up. The food pyramid has now been updated to what is seen below:
But the movie brings up a good idea: maybe this pyramid is full of biases- created by those who have ties with the various food industries. The film is not the most glamorous- which could be why it has mixed reviews, but that is not the point. The point is to inform the public on an important topic. Yes, it is full of stats and studies- but that is how medical decisions are made as well.
The film basically says this: "most, if not all, of the degenerative diseases that afflict us can be controlled, or even reversed, by rejecting our present menu of animal-based and processed foods." It is trying to say that we are in control of our own destiny. Just because our parents developed hypertension, diabetes, or high cholesterol - does not mean we have to be on the same track. What medical school fails to teach future physicians is about nutrition. We are taught hundreds of medications and side effects along with hundreds of more procedures. Prescribing drugs is profitable- and so is doing a procedure. Helping patients re-evaluate their food choices seems to cumbersome, which may be why it is not taught or done.
Forks over Knives features Caldwell, Esselstyn., M.D, who treated president Bill Clinton after his cardiac surgery. It also features T. Colin Campbell, Ph.D an American biochemist, and Professor Emeritus of Nutritional Biochemistry at Cornell University. The film has been hailed by medical celebrities like Dr. Sanjay Gupta from CNN as well as Dr. Oz.
The film suggests making drastic food changes - no meat, no fish, no dairy, no eggs etc. Being realistic, most of us probably won't follow this diet. However I am now encouraged to continue or work on good habits. Some of these include minimizing red meat intake, minimizing sugary foods, maximizing fruit and vegetable intake, avoiding soda, avoiding over eating etc.
If you are further interested in this topic, you should take a look at this film...