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The Mother of All Diets!

By Dr. Peter W. Kujtan, B.Sc., M.D., Ph.D.

Article printed on page 17 in the April 2-3, 2005 issue,
Reprinted as "The Diet Season" on page 12 in the August 16-17, 2008 issue of The Mississauga News under the feature: Health & Wellness, Medicine Matters.
Portrait of Dr. Peter W. Kujtan, supplied 2005
Dr. Peter W. Kujtan

We must come to terms about how influential our diets are in many types of cancer. One of the most disturbing bits of information that I have encountered this year is the scientific suggestion that the average lifespan of our children may be shorter than our own. The difference is measured in months but the implication is horrendous. Poor eating habits resulting in childhood obesity will produce a great deal more illness when those kids become adults. How can this be reversed? Do we legislate change making it illegal to produce junk foods? Do we mandate parents taking nutrition courses? Perhaps we should dump this on the school system?

What is the optimum diet? To answer this question perhaps it is better to look at what is not. One of my favorite nutritional authors is Dr. Andrew Weil. The son of botanists, he is perhaps the original medicine man, and lives his lifestyle accordingly. In his Eating Well for Optimum Health, Dr. Weil takes on the task of describing a diet that is likely to lead to poor health and cancer.

What is the worst diet that one can imagine? It begins by taking an oath never to buy fresh foods and to use processed ready-to-eat items whenever possible. Foods consumed should contain hundreds more calories than we require so that excesses will get stored as fat. The diet should be overloaded with high glycemic index carbohydrates. These are foods that essentially dump their loads quickly into our system. The best sources are found in refined white flour items such as fluffy breads and pastries, but French fries, sweets and pop also meet the high glycemic index criteria. Dr. Weil suggests looking for items containing the ever more popular high-fructose corn syrup which can disrupt proper metabolism. The fat in this diet should be saturated fat such as cheese, butter and cream. For protein, copious amounts of beef and chicken with the skin on will not only help our progression of cardiovascular disease but also ensure the various hormones, feedlot chemicals and other items make it into the diet. Ignore fish and any type of vegetable protein. Instead, go for the processed hot dogs and luncheon meats which will add the necessary nitrites, salt and other chemicals to compromise your health. Snack foods should only be made from partially hydrogenated oils.

It is also vitally important to eliminate the micronutrients such as vitamins and co-factors by not allowing fresh fruits or green vegetables to be part of your diet. Canned fruit smothered in thick syrup is fine, as is a smidge of iceberg lettuce as long as it is made unrecognizable by drowning it in dressing. Ketchup is also acceptable since most youngsters consider it a vegetable by reading the ingredient listing backwards. If you get an irresistible urge to cheat on this diet, simply hop in the car and visit any of the plentiful fast-food outlets in your neighborhood. They can help you stick to this diet during weak will times. Refrain from exercising as this may increase metabolism and throw the whole process off. Besides, it aggravates a smoker's cough.

There you have it, a surefire way to accelerate the appearance of cancer, diabetes, hypertension and heart disease. What truly amazes me is how many youngsters actually know about this diet. I can only surmise that they have read his book. How close are you to this ideal?

Eating Well for Optimum Health:
The Essential Guide to Bringing
Health and Pleasure Back to Eating

Eating Well for Optimum Health: The Essential Guide to Bringing Health and Pleasure Back to Eating by Dr Andrew Weil

Related resources:

10 Food Combinations that Mess with Your Health by Rebecca Deczynski, Woman's Day, Healthy Living. Reasons are given for why eating the following 10 food combinations is not good for your health. Author also suggests healthier alternates. 1. White Bread with Jam. 2. Pizza with Pepperoni. 3. Corn Chips with Salsa. 4. Cereal with Milk. 5. Wine with Dessert. 6. A Burger with Fries. 7. Canned Tomato Soup with Grilled Cheese. 8. Meatloaf with Mashed Potatoes. 9. Salad with Lowfat or Fat-Free Dressing. 10. A Muffin with Orange Juice.

10 foods you should eat every day from Best Health Magazine. Stock your kitchen with these super foods to ensure your diet is packed with antioxidants, fibre and other healthy properties. 1. Blueberries. 2. Garlic. 3. Olive Oil. 4. Broccoli. 5. Yogurt. 6. Oats. 7. Flaxseeds. 8. Cinnamon. 9. Tea. 10. Beans.

Top 10 Everyday Super Foods by Kathleen Zelman, MPH, RD/LD. Reviewed By Louise Chang, MD. From WebMD Weight Loss Clinic. These easy-to-eat foods are packed with multiple nutrients to help you stay healthy. 1. Low fat or fat-free plain yogurt. 2. Skim milk. 3. Eggs. 4. Nuts. 5. Quinoa. 6. Beans. 7. Salmon. 8. Broccoli. 9. Sweet potatoes. 10. Berries.

10 Top Foods You Should Eat Every Day by Michelle Miley, eHow Contributor. Author states that it is important to eat a wide variety of beneficial foods as they all have something different to offer. She lists a variety of foods indicating their high Vitamin contents: Mangoes, Watermelon, Blueberries, Tomatoes, Sweet potatoes, Butternut squash, Pumpkin, Orange bell peppers, Carrots, Broccoli, Spinach, Kale, Turnip greens, Swiss chard, Beans, Fat-free and low-fat plain yogurt, Salmon, Oats, and Nuts.

10 foods that will help you lose weight by Kat Tancock and Helen Racanelli, Canadian Living. Includes recipes to try. 10 Foods: 1. Cucumbers. 2. Grapefruit. 3. Lentils. 4. Oats. 5. Foods with Shells (e.g. walnuts in shell, edamame in pod). 6. Apples. 7. Eggs. 8. Almonds. 9. Dark Chocolate. 10. Vegetable Soups.

Dr. Oz's 12 Best Diet Tips. "Your waist should be half of your height" says Dr. Oz.

Cancer Diet & Nutrition Manual: Cancer Diet during cancer treatments & Cancer Prevention Diet from Healthcastle.com.

The Anti-Cancer Diet: 12 Dietary Changes that Will Lower Your Cancer Risk, The Top Anti-Cancer Foods, and other topics from AskDrSears.

Can We Eat to Starve Cancer? Dr. William Li on Angiogenesis. TED Talk. YouTube video, 24:11 min. How cancer becomes dangerous. How Mother Nature can help to prevent cancer growth.

Cancer and Diet Getting Physical video from WN Network, 0:55 min.

Questions and Answers About Cancer, Diet and Fats from Internation Food Information Council (IFIC).

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