You are here
(note: the studies below were not funded by the NRF)
Diabetes, obesity, heart disease, stroke and dementia are ravaging our health in the 21st century. The statistics are staggering: 72% of Americans are either overweight (38%) or obese (34%). 90 million Americans have either diabetes or pre-diabetes. More than 1 in 3 U.S. adults (81 million) currently live with one or more types of cardiovascular disease. Cancer is also a preventable cause of death significantly linked to diet and environmental factors.
What is the answer to these epidemics?
Interventional cardiology and cardiovascular surgery have not been found to extend the lifespan of patients with atherosclerotic heart disease. Drugs offer only mild benefit in some diseases but do not alter significantly the trajectory of chronic degenerative disease. Furthermore, prescription medicines have been shown to be a leading cause of morbidity and mortality in the United States. 1, 2, 3, 4, 5
We propose to study diet styles ideally designed to maximize the potential for disease prevention and disease reversal. Dr. Fuhrman has elaborated, tested and described the features of a diet-style and supplemental requirements designed for maximizing disease reversal and longevity. The salient features of this program have already been investigated in small preliminary scientific studies with dramatic results. Such a diet has the following specific features:
- High nutrient density
A micronutrient-dense diet provides not just adequate vitamins and minerals but also thousands of phytochemicals that profoundly impact cell signaling and function, which enables the body to maximize healing and repair. Consumption of adequate raw greens and cooked green vegetables in conjunction with beans, seeds, onions, mushrooms, and a more limited amount of starchy vegetables, whole grains and fresh fruit all together supply at least 90 percent of caloric intake.
- Vegetable-based, without processed foods.
A plant-based diet means little or no animal products or refined foods to maximize consumption of the phytochemical-rich plant foods to reduce cellular toxicity, DNA damage, and immune system dysfunction.
- Reduced calorie intake
Consumption of plant foods with low caloric density enables satiation with fewer calories. Animal studies have demonstrated that caloric restriction is associated with increased longevity. A diet with high micronutrient content and reduced calories affords powerful protection against disease.
When this type of diet is applied clinically, remarkable results occur. A strong need to evaluate and document the efficacy of this diet style in controlled scientific studies currently exists. Our goal is to initiate and support research that will investigate the impact of an optimally healing diet in the treatment of chronic disease states. Research on the the therapeutic implications of juice fasting and water fasting are also of interest to the mission of the Nutrititional Research Foundation.
- Flegal KM et al. Prevalence and trends in obesity among US adults, 1999-2008. JAMA 2010; 303(3)
- Van Cleave J, Gortmaker SL, Perrin JM. Dynamics of obesity and chronic health conditions among children and youth. JAMA 2010; 303(7): 623-630.
- de la Monte SM et al. Review of insulin, insulin-like growth factor expression, signaling and malfunction in the CNS: Relevance to Alzheimer’s disease. J Alzheimer’s Dis 2005 Feb 7(1): 45-61.
- Ogden CL, Carroll MD, McDowell MA, Flegal KM. Obesity among adults in the United States-no change since 2003-2004. NCHS data brief no 1. National Center for Health Statistic; 2007