Dean Ornish: Healing through diet

This session is on natural wonders, and the bigger conferenceis on the pursuit of happiness. I want to try to combine them all, because to me, salving is reallythe ultimate natural wonder. Your body has a remarkablecapacity to begin healing itself, and much more quicklythan parties has since realise, if you simply stop doingwhat’s causing the problem. And so, actually, so much of what we doin medicine and life in general is focused on mopping up the floorwithout too turning off the faucet. I cherish doing this work, because it actually establishes countless peoplenew hope and brand-new selects that they didn’t have before, and it allows us to talkabout things that — not just diet, but that happiness is not — we’re talking aboutthe pursuit of happiness, but when you really lookat all the spiritual knowledge, what Aldous Huxley calledthe “perennial wisdom, ” when you get past the reputations and formsand rituals that divide people, it’s really about –our nature is to be happy; our mood is to be amicable, our nature is to be healthy.And so merriment is not something you get, state is generally notsomething that you get, but instead, all of thesedifferent patterns — you know, the ancient swamis and rabbisand priests and friars and nuns didn’t develop these techniquesto time succeed stress or lower your blood pressureor unclog your veins, even though it can do all those things. They’re powerful tools for transformation, for quieting down our sentiment and forms to allow us to experiencewhat it feels like to be happy, to be harmonious, to be joyful and to realize that it’s notsomething that you engage and get, but preferably, it’s something that youhave already, until you ruffle it.I studied yoga for many yearswith a teacher worded Swami Satchidananda. People would say, “What are you, a Hindu? ” He’d say, “No, I’m an undo.”( Laughter) It’s about identify what’s causing us to disturbour innate state and happiness and then to allowthat natural healing to occur. To me, that’s the real natural wonder. So, within that larger context, we can talk about diet, stress management — which are reallythese spiritual patterns — moderate utilization, smoking cessation, support groups and community, which I’ll talk more about, and some vitamins and supplements.And it’s not a diet. When beings thinkabout the diet I recommend, they think it’s really strict. For reversing canker, that’s what it takes. But if you’re just trying to be healthy, you have a spectrum of preferences. To the degree that you can movein a health guidance, you’re going to live longer, feel right, lose weight, and so on. And in our studies, what we’ve been able to do is to use very expensive, high-tech, state-of-the-art measures to prove how potent these very simpleand low-tech and low-cost — and in many ways, ancient –interventions can be. We firstly began by lookingat heart disease. When I began doing this work2 6 or 27 year ago, it was thought that once you haveheart disease, it can only get worse. What we ascertained was, instead of getting worse and worse, in many cases, it could get better and better, and much more quicklythan people had once realized.This is a representative patientwho, at the time, was 73, told he needed to have a bypass, decided to do this instead. We utilized quantitative arteriography, registering the restricting. This is one of the main arteriesthat feeds the heart, and “youre seeing” the narrowing here. A years later, it’s not as clogged; normally, it proceeds the other direction.These child changes in blockages effected a 300 percentimprovement in blood flow, and using cardiac positron-emissiontomography, or PET, searches — blue-blooded and pitch-black is no blood flow, orange and white is maximal — huge differences can occurwithout dopes, without surgery. Clinically, he couldn’t walkacross the street without going severe chest pain. Within a month, like most people, he was pain-free, and within a year, descending morethan 100 storeys a period on a StairMaster. This is no longer singular, and it’s part of what enables peopleto maintain these kinds of changes, because it makes a big differencein their quality of life. If you looked at all the arteriesin all the patients, they came worse and worse from one yearto five years in the comparing radical. This is the natural historyof heart disease. But it’s really not natural; we foundit could get better and better, and much more quickly than beings considered. We too find the more people modified, the better they got. It wasn’t a functionof how old-fashioned or sick they were, but of how much they altered. The oldest patients improvedas much as the young ones.I came this Christmas card a few years agofrom patients in one of our programs. The younger brother is 86; the older one is 95. They wanted to show mehow much more flexible they were. The following year they transmitted this, which I thought was funny.( Laughter) You merely never know. And what we foundwas that 99 percentage of individual patients stopped or overruled the progressionof their cardiac infarction. Now, I recollected if we justdid good science, that would change medical rehearsal. But that was naive. It’s important, but not enough, since we are doctors dowhat we get paid to do and trained to do what we get paid to do, so if we change insurance, then we changemedical rule and medical education. Policy will comprise the bypassand angioplasty but won’t, until recently, cover diet and lifestyle. So we began, through our nonprofitinstitute, prepare infirmaries around the country, and we found that most peoplecould shun surgery. And not only was it medicallyeffective, it was also cost-effective. The insurance companies foundthat they began to save nearly 30,000 dollars individual patients, and Medicare is now in the middleof make a exhibition programme, paying for 1,800 peopleto go through the program in the places we train.The fortuneteller says, “I utter smokers a dismis, because there’s not so much better to tell.”( Laughter) I like this slither, because it’s a chance to talk aboutwhat really motivates beings to change and what doesn’t. What doesn’t work is fear of dying, and that’s what’s normally used. Everybody who smokesknows it’s not good for you. Still, 30 percentage of Americans fume, 80 percent in some parts of the world. Why do people do it? Well, because it helps themget through the day. I’ll talk more about this, but the real epidemic isn’t justheart disease or obesity or smoking, it’s loneliness and depression.One maid said, “I’ve got 20 friendsin this pack of cigarettes. They’re always there for me, and nobody else is. You’re going to take away my 20 friends? What are you going to give me? ” Or they feed when they get depressedor use booze to numb the tendernes or work too hard or watch too much TV. There are lots of ways we have of avoidingand listing and bypassing agony, but the detail of all of thisis to deal with the cause of the problem. The sorenes is not the problem, it’s the symptom. And telling beings they’re going to dieis too creepy to be considered, or that they’ll come emphysemaor a heart attack is too scary, and they don’t want to thinkabout it, so they don’t. The most effectiveanti-smoking ad was this one. You’ll notice the totter cigarettehanging out of his lip. And the headline is “Impotent, “it’s not “Emphysema.” What was the biggest-sellingdrug of all time, when it was introduced a few years ago? Viagra, right? Why? Because a lot of guys need it.It’s not like you say, “Joe, I’m havingerectile dysfunction. How about you? ” And hitherto, look at the numberof prescriptions that are being sold. It’s not so muchpsychological, it’s vascular, and nicotine makesyour routes constrict. So does cocaine, so does a high-fat diet, so does emotional stress. So the very behaviors that we think ofas being so sexy in our culture are the highly ones that leaveso many parties feeling tired, sleepy, depressed and impotent. And that’s not much entertaining. But when you modify those behaviours, your intelligence comes more blood, you think more clearly, have more vigor, your stomach gets more blood, as I’ve demo you. Your sexual run improves. These things occur within hours.This is a study: a high-fat meal, within one or two hours, blood spring is measurably less. And you’ve all experiencedthis at Thanksgiving. When you snack a big fatty meal, how do “youre feeling”? You feel kind of sleepy subsequentlies. On a low-fat meal, the blood flowdoesn’t go down — it even goes up. Many of you have girls, and you knowthat’s a big change in your lifestyle.People are not afraidto acquire big changes in lifestyle if they’re worth noting. And the mystery is that when you makebig changes, you get big benefits, and you feel so much better so quickly. For many beings, this really is selections worth seeing — not to live longer, but to live better. I want to talk a little bitabout the obesity epidemic, because it really is a problem. Two-thirds of adultsare overweight or obese, and diabetes in kids and 30 -year-olds has increased 70 percentin the last 10 years.It’s no joke, it’s real. And merely to show you this, “its from” the CDC. These are not election returns; these are the percentage of peoplewho are overweight. And if you is evident from’ 85 to’ 86 to’ 87,’ 88,’ 89,’ 90,’ 91 — you get a new category, 15 to 20 percentage;’ 92,’ 93,’ 94,’ 95,’ 96,’ 97 –you get a new list;’ 98,’ 99, 2000 and 2001. Mississippi, more than 25 percentof beings are overweight. Why is this? Well, this is one wayto lose weight that works is a good one –( Laughter) but it doesn’t last-place, which is the problem.( Laughter) Now, there’s no mysteryin how you lose weight; you either burn more calories by exert or you devour fewer calories. Now, one mode to eat fewer caloriesis to eat less menu, which is why you can lose weighton any nutrition if you snack less food, or if you restrictentire each category of meat. But the problem is, you get hungry, so it’s hard to keep it off. The other channel is to changethe type of menu. And overweight has nine calories per gram, whereas protein and carbs exclusively have four.So when you gobble less fat, you munched fewercalories without having to eat less nutrient. So you can eat the same amount of meat, but you’re getting fewer calories because the foodis less dense in calories. And it’s the capacity of meat that affectssatiety, rather than the type. I don’t like talking about the Atkinsdiet, but I get asked about it, so guessed I’d waste a few minutes on it.The superstition that you examine is, Americans have been told to eat less solid, the percent of calories from fat is down, Americans are fatter than ever, therefore solid doesn’t offset you fat. It’s a half-truth. Actually, Americans are eatingmore fatty than ever, and even more carbs. So the percentage is lower, but the actual amount is higher, so the goal is to reduce both. Dr. Atkins and I debated each othermany times before he was dead, and we agreed that Americans eattoo many simple carbs, the “bad carbs.” And these are things like –( Laughter) sugar, white flour, white-hot rice, booze. And you get a double whammy: you get all these caloriesthat don’t fill you up because you’ve removed the fiber, and they get absorbed quicklyso your blood sugar zooms up. Your pancreas shapes insulinto returning it back down, which is good, but insulin acceleratesthe conversion of calories into fat. So the goal is not to go to pork husks, bacon and sausages — these are not health foods — but to go from “bad carbs”to “good carbs.” These are things like entire foodsor unrefined carbs.Fruits, vegetables, whole wheat flour, brown rice, in their natural fleshes, are rich in fiber. The fiber replenishes you upbefore you get too many calories and it retards the absorption, so you don’t getthat rapid rise in blood sugar. And you get allthe disease-protective elements. It’s not just what you excludefrom your nutrition, but likewise what the hell are you includethat’s protective. Precisely as all carbs are not bad for you, all overweights are not bad; there are good paunches. These are predominantlywhat are called omega-3 fatty battery-acids. You find them, for example, in fish oil. Bad paunches are things liketrans-fatty battery-acids in processed food and saturated paunches, which we find in meat. If you recollect nothing elsefrom this talk: three grams per day of fish petroleum can reducethe risk of heart attack and sudden death by 50 to 80 percentage. Three grams a day. They come in one-gram sheaths; more than that really gives youextra overweight you don’t need.It too helps reduce the riskof the most common cancers, like tit, prostate and colon. The trouble with the Atkins diet is, everyone knows peoplewho’ve lost value on it, but you can lose weighton amphetamines and fen-phen; there are lots of ways of losing weightthat aren’t are you all right. You want to do itin a way that enhances your health , not one that harms it. The trouble is, it’s based on this half-truth: Americans dine too many simple carbs, so if you feed fewer, you’ll lose weight, and even more weightif you gobble whole menus and less solid, and you’ll enhance your healthrather than harming it. He says, “I’ve got good information. While your cholesterol levelhas remained the same, the research findings have changed.”( Laughter) Now what happens to your heartwhen you go on an Atkins diet? The red is good; at the beginningand a year later.This is from a study in a peer-reviewedjournal called “Angiology.” There’s more red after a yearon a diet like I would recommend, there’s less red, little blood flowafter a year on an Atkins-type diet. So, yes, you can lose weight, but your heart isn’t joyful. Now one of the studiesfunded by the Atkins Center found that 70 percentof the person or persons were constipated, 65 percent had bad breather, 54 percent had headaches — this is not a health channel to eat.So you might start to lose weightand start to attract parties towards you, but when they get too close, it’s going to be a problem.( Laughter) And more seriously, there is only casereports now of 16 -year-old girls who died after a few weekson the Atkins diet, of bone ailment, kidney malady, and so on. And that’s how your person ejects consume — through your sigh, bowels and perspiration.So when you go on these kindsof nutrition, they begin to smell bad. An optimal food is low in overweight, low-spirited in the bad carbs, high in the good carbsand enough of the very best solids. And then, again, it’s a spectrum: when you move in this direction, you’re going to lose weight, you’ll feel better, and you’ll gain health. There are ecological reasonsfor gobbling lower on the food chain more, whether it’s the deforestationin the Amazon or clearing more protein available to the four billion peoplewho live on a dollar per day , not to mention whateverethical concerns beings have. So there are lots of reasonsfor eating this way that go beyond only your state. Now, we’re about to publishthe firstly study looking at the effects of this programon prostate cancer, in collaborationwith Sloan Kettering and UCSF.We took 90 men who hadbiopsy-proven prostate cancer, who had elected, for rationales unrelatedto the study , not to have surgery. We could randomly segment theminto two groups, and then we could have one group that is a noninterventioncontrol group to compare to, which you can’t do with, say, breast cancer, because everybody gets given. We found that after a year , nothing of the experimental group patientswho constructed these lifestyle modifies needed care, while six members of the see radical patientsneeded surgery or radioactivity. When we looked at their PSA status, which is a marker for prostate cancer, they get worse in the command groupbut went better in the experimental group. And the differenceswere highly significant. I wondered — was there any closer relations between how much people changedtheir diet and life, whichever radical they were in, and the changes in PSA? And sure enough, we founda dose-response relationship, just like we did in the arterialblockages in our cardiac studies. And in order for the PSA to go down, they are required to move big changes. I then wonderedif they’re just changing their PSA, but it’s not really affectingthe tumor growth.So we took some of their bloodserum and send it to UCLA. They added it to a standard lineof prostate tumor cells growing in tissue culture, and it impeded the growthseven times bigger in the experimental group than in the ensure radical –7 0 versus 9 percent. Ultimately, I wonderedif there’s any closer relations between how much parties varied and how much it inhibitedtheir tumor growing, whichever group they were in. And this really got meexcited because again, we determined the same pattern: the more people deepen, the more it affectedthe growth of their tumors. Finally, we did MRI and MR spectroscopyscans on some of these patients. The tumor activityis shown in red in this patient, and “youre seeing” clearly it’s better a yearlater, along with the PSA going down. If it’s true for prostate cancer, it’ll almost certainly be truefor breast cancer. And whether or not you haveconventional treatment, in addition, if you establish these changes, it may help reduce the risk of recurrence.The last-place thing I would like to speak about, apropos of the issueof the pursuit of happiness, is that study after study has shown that people who are lonelyand chilled — and feeling is the otherreal epidemic in our culture — are many times more likelyto get sick and die prematurely, in part because, as we talked about, they’re more likely to smoke, overeat, drink too much, work too hard, and so on. But likewise, through mechanismsthat we don’t fully understand, people who are lonelyand depressed are many times — three to five to ten timesin some studies — more likely to get sickand die prematurely. And depression is treatable.We need to do something about that. Now on the other hand, anythingthat promotes intimacy is healing. It can be sexual intimacy — I happen to think healing energyand prurient force are just different formsof the same thing. Friendship, altruism, compassion, assistance — all the perennial truthsthat we talked about that are part of all religionand all cultures, once you stop tryingto see the differences — these are the thingsthat are in our own self-interest, since they are free usfrom our suffer and our disease.And it’s, in a sense, the most selfish thing that we can do. Just to look at one study, done by David Spiegel at Stanford. He took women with metastaticbreast cancer, haphazardly parted them into two groups. One group assemble for an hour and a halfonce a week in a aid radical. It was a nurturing, adoration environment, where they were encouragedto let down their psychological defenses and talk about how dreaded it isto have breast cancer with people who understoodbecause they were going through it too.They matched formerly a few weeks for a year. Five years later, those womenlived twice as long. And that was the only differencebetween different groups. It was a randomized verify studypublished in “The Lancet.” Other studies have shown this as well. So these simple thingsthat create intimacy are truly salving. Even the word “healing”comes from the beginning “to make whole.” The word “yoga” comesfrom the Sanskrit, representing “union, ” “to yoke, to bring together.” The last slip I want to show youis from — again, this swami that I studiedwith for so many years. I did a compounded oncologyand cardiology grandiose rounds at the University of Virginiamedical school a duo years ago. And following the adjournment of it, soul said, “Hey, Swami, what’s the differencebetween wellness and illness? ” So he went up on the boardand wrote the word “illness” and circled the first letter, then wrote the word “wellness, ” and clique the first two letters.To me, it’s just shorthandfor what we’re talking about: that anything that creates a senseof connection and community and cherish is really healing. And then we can enjoy “peoples lives” more fullywithout getting sick in the process. Thank you.( Applause ).

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