When something out of our control happens to us - like a cancer diagnosis - it’s reassuring to take what we can into our own hands. Holistic nutritionist and wellness coach Dr. Ruby Lathon did just that by successfully treating her thyroid cancer with a plant-based diet. Now, she teaches others to do the same through her holistic coaching business, Roadmap to Holistic Health.
0:00 - Introduction
1:30 - What brought her to veganism
A diagnosis of thyroid cancer in 2007 first inspired Dr. Lathon to adopt a plant-based diet. Faced with the unappealing options to remove her thyroid - which would require being on medications forever - or use hormones derived from pigs, she opted for neither.
Having heard stories of others healing from cancer on their own, Dr. Lathon decided to investigate what she could do to take her health into her own hands. In her research, the most evidence-based solution that kept surfacing over and over was adopting a plant-based lifestyle.
3:00 - Learning the truth about dairy and eggs
Having grown up as an ethical vegetarian, she was accustomed to eating large amounts of cheese and eggs, as these are common substitutions for meat. To her horror, she learned in her research that these products were not, in fact, cruelty-free.
6:40 - You can and do stop craving cheese on a plant-based diet
Like many people, Dr. Lathod loved the taste of cheese. But after quitting cheese for a month, she lost her appetite for it. She even tried it again after thirty days and felt it did not taste the same.
She determined that what ultimately cured her cheese craving was the knowledge of what cheese really is: cow’s breast milk, mixed with pus, which causes inflammation and cancers and is the product of a cruel system. When she looks at cheese and goes through that mental list, she has no desire to eat it.
9:00 - How she uses her engineering PhD in her business, Roadmap to Holistic Health
Before beginning her work in holistic nutrition, Dr. Lathon had a background in engineering and computer science. But when she was diagnosed with cancer, she used that as an impetus to step back and reevaluate what she wanted in life.
So, she “re-engineered her life” to align with what she truly desired. Mustering the courage to leave her career in engineering, she moved to Washington, D.C. to work for the nonprofit Physicians’ Committee for Responsible Medicine (PCRM). There, she teaches people how to use medicine to heal and prevent disease.
12:10 - What is a holistic nutritionist and wellness coach?
As a holistic nutritionist and wellness coach, Dr. Lathon looks at all factors that affect people’s wellbeing - beyond nutrition - such as sleep, relationships, and exercise.
As part of her business, Dr. Lathon both makes recipe videos and even delivers meals to clients who are in cancer recovery, aim to lose weight or just stay healthy.
19:10 Featured in the 2017 documentary, What the Health
Her prominence in the field of holistic nutrition and wellness coaching even led her to be featured in the well-known 2017 documentary What the Health. In the documentary, she was featured explaining how her plant-based diet helped reduce pain and inflammation after major surgery. This hard-hitting, poignant and controversial documentary went on to inspire many more people to adopt healthy plant-based diets.
21:40 - How federal dietary guidelines are formed by big money interests
Although she works for healthier eating at the individual level now, Dr. Lathon is no stranger to the policy-level fight. Previously, she worked in government, lobbying for healthier lunches in the National School Lunch Program. There, she was frustrated to find that the scientific integrity of the Federal Dietary Guidelines for Americans is corrupted by massive conflicts of interest.
As a result of this corrupted food system, the US spends hundreds of billions of dollars treating preventable conditions like obesity, type 2 diabetes, and heart disease.
As Dr. Lathon asserted, “Our food system is the way it is because of capitalism and greed. We don't live in a true democratic government.”
26:30 - What strategies have been successful in helping people commit to a plant-based lifestyle?
Dr. Lathon’s tips for helping people transition to a plant-based lifestyle include:
1. Plan what you're going to eat to avoid relying on willpower.
2. Educate yourself on nutrition. Be sure to “eat the rainbow” and expand your diet by trying new foods.
3. Focus on green foods!
#vegan #plantbased #crueltyfree #holistichealth #healcancer #cancerprevention #wholefoodplantbased
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