Do you follow your own eating plan?
Yes. I think modeling is underestimated in medicine. I think doctors increasingly have an important role to play by showing patients that they themselves are invested in eating healthfully, exercising, and becoming fit.
How did you come to culinary medicine?
Two things: my own weight gain and my private medical practice. The trigger was when I appeared on the cover of a magazine, and I found I had three chins. I thought, "That's just too many." Since I had an uncle who died of diabetes at age 48, that too was in the back of my mind. Then, in my medical practice, I was seeing patients like those near the end of life but 50 years younger, who were just beginning to have high cholesterol, high blood pressure, joint pain, or bouts of depression. I said, "I have to learn how to make a healthy diet taste good because it's obvious it's missing for these younger people."
What do you hope people take away from all this?
That people have the power to reverse disease processes with what they eat, along with exercise and medication. And that it should taste good.