Robin Quivers on health and nutrition -Huffington Post

I just watched two documentaries on health and nutrition. Stop it. I can hear you already: “borrrrrrrrrrring”. If you’re willing to stay with me for just a moment, it could change your life.

For those who need a scientific approach to determining whether the nutritional information you’re getting is valid, there’s Forks Over Knives about two pioneering doctors who realized that conventional medical treatments for heart disease were not producing cures or preventing heart attacks.

The other documentary is for those who find experiential information more to their liking. It’s called Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead. This documentary was shot by an Australian businessman who was suffering from all the side effects of the good life that came along with financial success. He takes us along as he travels across the US and juices for sixty days.

The first documentary is serious and speaks to the changes in the eating habits of Americans of the last sixty years and what has happened to the health and waistlines of the population in the process. They make a compelling argument for a plant-based diet for good health and disease prevention and for the treatment of disease. It also explains the relationship between processed food and the food addiction that has gripped the country.

What is surprising is that most people completely accept the nutritional information they get from food manufacturers. They don’t realize that this information is coming to them through advertisements designed to make them want to buy the food. Also, most people also believe their fat is completely their fault, convinced they cold lose it if they could only control themselves and just stop eating so much. They don’t realize that processed foods are designed to fool the body’s mechanism for recognizing that it has consumed enough calories.

In both documentaries, you can watch people naturally reverse the conditions for which doctors have prescribed them medication. The conditions reversed include heart disease, diabetes, and cancer — the big three — as well as autoimmune diseases, arthritis, migraines and allergies.

I always wonder why people would prefer to keep their discomforts. I can’t tell you how many people say to me, “It runs in my family.” It never occurs to them that their family generally eats the same way, so they eventually suffer from the same diseases. My mother became a diabetic in her fifties. She and my father were both diagnosed with high blood pressure. My mother has had two different kinds of cancer and my father had heart disease and died of Alzheimer’s. My oldest brother didn’t heed the warnings either and he has been diagnosed with diabetes too.

I’ve changed my eating habits over the years. The first changes came in my late twenties when a doctor told me my blood pressure was high. He gave me a month to change my diet and lose weight. If I didn’t, he said he would have to put me on medication. At the time I thought, I don’t want to have to start taking pills for the rest of my life this early. So I lost twenty pounds through diet and exercise. When I returned to the doctor’s office he was shocked. He said no one ever listened. They always opted for the pills.

Today we have become far too reliant on science to get us out of the messes we create. We expect the magic pill will be developed to reverse the course of all of our bad behavior. When someone advises a plant based diet, the usual response is that it seems extreme. Having to give oneself a shot every morning, open heart surgery and gastric banding are considered reasonable.

Please, get your hands on one of these documentaries or any of the others out there that talk about the relationship between food and health. Don’t wait until you need open heart surgery.

Former President Clinton has access to the best health care this country can provide. For him, all that resulted in was repeated episodes of chest pain and cardiac procedures. Clinton is now a vegan. He finally had enough of conventional health care and decided to do something extreme to get healthy.

Don’t assume you’re healthy because you’re thin and continue to ply yourself with cheeseburgers and 16 oz coffee drinks either. One of the biggest myths is that just being thin will save you. One of my best friends is fighting cancer right now. She turned to me when we last spoke and said, “How did this happen? I did everything right.”

All of us process food differently. Just because the food doesn’t make you fat doesn’t mean you’re getting the nutrients you need or expelling the things in food that will make you sick.

Obamacare is not about health; it’s about whether or not you will be able to get some kind of treatment for the disease you’ll eventually contract. Come on people, let’s not be the fat nation. Let’s be the fit, healthy nation. What do you say?

Robin Quivers article for the Huffington Post “Weight a Minute!”

Can you believe it? Something said on the Howard Stern Show created a controversy.

We were talking about how Precious star Gabourey Sidibe’s weight will negatively affect her health and career. I guess by stating the obvious we hit a nerve because the mainstream media went wild calling us mean. The reaction of the African American community has been even more confounding, calling Howard racist and me a sellout and a House Negro. What no one wanted to confront was the validity of our argument.

To say there won’t be a lot of leading roles in the future for Gabourey is hardly some kind of giant, racist leap. Precious is not your average film. The filmmakers had to go out and find an actress who looked the part. Most working actors start out thin and contort themselves to fit a role. Robert De Niro won acclaim for gaining weight to play Jake LaMotta in Raging Bull, but quickly slimmed down again so he could continue to qualify for the many different parts he would be offered. The same can be said for actresses Rene Zellwegger and Charlize Theron.

But what about when an actor is already overweight? When was the last time you saw Kirstie Alley in a movie? Once a leading lady, she is now hounded by paparazzi trying to catch her shoving something into her mouth and doing show after show about her efforts to slim down so she can work again. Oh, but, our critics point out, look at Kathy Bates and Queen Latifah. Let’s be real: both these women have gained and lost weight over the years. They continue to struggle to lose weight because they know it’s important to their careers, and while neither of them will ever be Zoe Saldano, they are not Gabourey Sidibe either.

I wonder why nobody except me and Howard Stern are willing to say that Gabourey needs help. She is not just overweight, she is dangerously obese. I understand that she was discovered this way, but after the film someone should have said, “Hey Gabby, it would be great if you slimmed down so that you can capitalize on the opportunities that will be coming your way.”

When you’re in the public eye, like it or not, you become a role model. Precious is the kind of film that speaks to people. I, for one, am afraid of what is being said to African American girls about the movie’s star by the media. Is it really okay for Gabourey to be looking forward to another fast food orgy at the Chick fil-A? Does she really look great on the red carpet? Is she really a part of Hollywood, or just its latest victim?

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention 50% of black women are obese. Obesity is a risk factor for every major disease including heart disease, stroke and diabetes. Two of Gabourey’s co-stars in Precious have openly talked about struggling to control their weight now that they have been diagnosed as diabetic–and neither was ever the size of Gabourey.

We can’t be for Gabourey continuing to eat out of control and for the First Lady’s campaign to stamp out childhood obesity at the same time. We have to start being honest about how deadly this health crisis is, particularly in the black community. We have to be able to say that Gabourey is fat.

I know the deal; I’ve been there. I was clinically obese. I never thought it was cool, nor did I want anyone encouraging me to eat more. I was devastated by the way I felt and the way I looked. I feared that because no one commented on my condition people thought I wanted to look that way. Everyone says Gabourey has a good attitude. Well, what is she suppose to do? When I was going through it I didn’t say anything either. I even stopped talking about dieting because I was tired of failing publicly.

I never gave up though, and I eventually found my way back to sanity around food. As a result of all I’ve learned, I believe we need a Food Bill of Rights in the Constitution to help us make informed choices about what we eat and how our food got to our plates. This is a right as much as clean, drinkable water. I’m going to let you know how my food bill progresses and I want your input. We’re all in this health crisis together and it will take all of us to get out. The first step in solving any problem is being able to identify it. Let’s start telling each other the truth about weight. It’s killing us.