100 doctors to hold integrative medicine congress Sept. 29
A growing number of physicians are evolving from treating acute illnesses to proactively preventing them.
Some examples are members of the 150,000-strong Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine (PCRM), a nonprofit research and advocacy organization based in Washington, DC, which promotes a whole food, plant-based diet (devoid of animals) to prevent, or even reverse lifestyle diseases, and encourages a higher standard of ethics and effectiveness in research.
Late in July, PCRM held its international conference on nutrition and medicine in which founding president Neal Barnard, MD, and 100 doctors marched to the White House to deliver this message to the seat of the world’s most powerful government: Break the meat habit.
PCRM thus declared, in no uncertain terms, that “eating meat can increase the risk for heart disease, stroke, type 2 diabetes, certain types of cancer, and kidney failure. Preventable, diet-related diseases now account for seven in 10 US deaths and 86 percent of the country’s healthcare costs.”
In the Philippines, there is a group of doctors who are about to take a similar stance. The Preventive, Regenerative, and Integrative Medical Alliance of the Philippines (Prima Philippines), a SEC-registered, nonstock, nonprofit medical society, will hold the second Integrative Medicine Congress on Sept. 29 and 30 at the Grand Ballroom of the City Club, Alphaland Makati Place.
Last year, Prima highlighted the paradigm shift in the practice of medicine in the country—from the disease-oriented, symptom-relieving concept to the more proactive and preventive approach.
This second congress will focus on the application of the fast-evolving medical technology in integrative medicine that gives the country an edge not only in diagnostics but in evidence-based treatments as well.
Prima aims to bring this year’s attendees a glimpse of predictive medicine with the theme “Back to the Future: Merging Age-Old Practice with Cutting-Edge Technology.”
According to Prima, it is committed to share advanced evidence-based medical information among medical practitioners and the public alike. The organization pegs its advocacy on global health practices that can prevent illnesses associated with lifestyle habits and patterns, proactively avoid the development of genetically predisposed conditions through lifestyle modifications, and promote regeneration of diseased tissues and organs through cellular and biochemical technology.
Prima member Dr. Omar Arabia, MD, disclosed that Prima members—doctors—are already taking this plant-based approach even more seriously.
He also quipped that there would be “plenty of buffet salads and veggies in the convention.”
Globally, doctors are taking an even closer look at preventive healthcare, particularly in lifestyle medicine and evidence-based prevention of chronic diseases.
What to eat
Michael Greger, MD, founder of NutritionFacts.org, discussed in his book “How Not to Die” what to eat to help treat the top 15 causes of death, and also focused on his checklist of the foods and activities people should try to incorporate into their daily routines. Greger is just one of the doctors who are advocating this emerging cutting-edge nutritional science for patients to live longer and healthier lives.
Dr. Caldwell Blakeman Esselstyn Jr., an American cardiologist and surgeon, and a former Olympic rowing champion and author of “Prevent and Reverse Heart Disease” (2007), in which he argued for a low-fat, whole foods, plant-based diet that avoids all animal products, and nutrition scientist T. Colin Campbell (author of “The China Study”), and Dean Ornish, MD (author of “Program for Reversing Heart Disease”) are known to have helped former US President Bill Clinton recover from heart disease by convincing him to go vegan.
Ornish became controversial when he helped patients reverse their cardiovascular diseases through his program of healing through diet. In fact, his book included hundreds of pages of recipes from Shirley Elizabeth Brown, MD, and Martha Rose Shulman. The backbone of the recipes are vegetables, grains and dried beans. It was also cited that this was not a diet of deprivation, but on the contrary, a diet vibrant with color and rich with the flavors and textures of many different foods—fresh vegetables, tangy herbs and pungent spices, chewy, wholesome grains, savory beans, elegant pastas and sweet-enticing fruit dishes.
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