Dr. Dean Ornish talks with me about his new book The Spectrum
Before I left for vacation last weekend, I teased you when I revealed there would be a special 4-part interview with someone in the realm of diet, health and nutrition beginning this past week and continuing into next week. Now that I'm back, I guess you've discovered who it was already--low-fat diet advocate Dr. Dean Ornish. He contacted me about a month ago and asked if I would like to interview him again about his new book entitled The Spectrum: A Scientifically Proven Program to Feel Better, Live Longer, Lose Weight, and Gain Health. As my regular readers will recall, that previous 4-part interview in October 2006 was pretty much an open invitation for Dr. Ornish to share what he believes without any challenge whatsoever. Listen to Part 1 and Part 2 of that interview to hear what he had to say.
But in Episode 115 and Episode 116 of "The Livin' La Vida Low-Carb Show with Jimmy Moore", you'll notice a decidedly different tone this time around by design. Even Dr. Ornish requested me to feel free to challenge and question him on areas where we disagreed. And boy did I ever! Although Dr. Ornish continually tried to say we agreed with each other about various concepts, it was very evident that we clearly DO NOT agree as much as he thinks. You'll hear the frustration in my voice when he claims "we all agree" on this and that when we obviously don't. The back and forth exchange was fiery at times, but that sure makes for an entertaining podcast interview to listen to, though! :D
Click on the "LISTEN NOW" link below or download Part 1 to your iPod to hear Episode 115:
Click on the "LISTEN NOW" link below or download Part 2 to your iPod to hear Episode 116:
Dr. Dean Ornish is very polished in his presentation of what he believes about a healthy diet. The only problem is he is so deep into his own philosophical views and talking points that he forgets to answer the questions that are presented to him in black and white. Several times I asked him questions that merited a direct answer and he breezed right over them with something tee-totally different. Why is that? Is it so difficult to give a direct answer to a direct question, Dr. Ornish?
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We've got two more segments of my 100-minute interview with Dr. Dean Ornish, but tell us what you think about what you've heard so far. Leave your comments in the show notes section of Part 1 in Episode 115 as well as Part 2 in Episode 116 to share your thoughts about what you have heard from Dr. Ornish and his new book The Spectrum.
Incidentally, here is the breakdown of the five groups in The Spectrum from "most healthy" to "least healthy" according to Dr. Ornish (I OBVIOUSLY disagree with his definition of "healthy" and categorization of what that constitutes):
These are the most healthful foods, predominantly fruits, vegetables, whole grains, legumes, soy products, nonfat dairy, and egg whites in their natural forms, as well as some good fats that contain omega‑3 fatty acids.
These are also predominantly plant-based but somewhat higher in fat (predominantly monounsaturated fat and polyunsaturated fat) such as avocados, seeds, nuts. Oils are included but in small amounts, since they are so dense in calories. Group 2 also includes foods canned in water (rather than sugary syrup or oil), canned vegetables (if sodium is not too high), low-fat dairy products (1%), decaffeinated beverages, low-sodium soy sauce, and so on.
These foods include some seafood, some refined carbohydrates (Dr. Ornish has an interesting explanation in Part 2 of my interview about why these were not listed in Group 5) and concentrated sweeteners (in moderation), some oils that are higher in saturated fat, some reduced fat (2%) dairy products, margarines free of trans fatty acids, sweeteners containing high fructose corn syrup, and higher sodium.
In this group foods contain additional fat, higher animal protein and fewer protective nutrients. These include poultry, fish that are higher in mercury, whole milk/dairy products, margarine, mayonnaise, pastries, cakes, cookies, and pies.
In general, these foods are considered the least healthful. They are the lowest in protective substances and are highest in “bad fats.” Some food included in this group are red meat, egg yolks, fried poultry, fried fish, hot dogs, organ meats, butter, cream, and tropical oils like coconut oil.
UGH! As you can see, he's just about got the Groups backwards! When you see that refined carbohydrates are middle of the road "healthy" and egg yolks, butter and coconut oil are considered "least healthy," then you know we have a very clear difference of opinion regarding what is healthy and what is not. Keep listening to the rest of the interview to hear more about why Dr. Ornish thinks The Spectrum is far superior to anything he has ever written about nutrition before and why I think it is nothing more than the same old, same old we've always heard from him. I'll let YOU decide who to believe after listening to the final two segments of the interview on "The Livin' La Vida Low-Carb Show with Jimmy Moore."