Doctor: Food alone can cure patients with diabetes, other illnesses
HOUSTON (KTRK) -- As the holidays draw near, here's some food for thought: More than one-third of adults in America are considered obese by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention. But a Houston cardiologist is looking to change that. His patients have lost more than 50,000 pounds this year.
Gloria Williams' weight was rising and her health was failing.
"Twenty-three years of diabetes," Williams said. "Every time I went to the doctors, it was more and more medicine."
It was the same story for Jerry Dori.
"I was weighing 390 pounds, very diabetic," Dori said.
And Gary Shiflet.
"I kind of built up the reputation of being the fat boy," Shiflet said.
But finally, a change.
"In 90 days, most of them are losing 40 to 50 pounds by just following protocol, without exercise," said Houston cardiologist Dr. Kota J. Reddy.
Dr. Reddy says instead of writing prescriptions, he's getting his patients off medications -- for good!
"Food is thy medicine," he said.
Dr. Reddy says his diet program, laid out in his book "Eat This, Lose That," can reverse not just obesity but also diabetes, hypertension, and heart disease.
There are no supplements, injections or pills. But it's not easy. The plan requires you to cut all sugars, including fruit.
"An apple does not keep the doctor away. It keeps the doctor in the neighborhood," Dr. Reddy said.
Fruit contains fructose, which Reddy says causes damage to the liver, much like alcohol.
Next, say goodbye to caffeine.
"It makes you crave for comfort foods, it makes you crave for snacks," Dr. Reddy said.
So what can you have?
Before every meal, two glasses of water.
For breakfast, eat eggs, or plain Greek yogurt. Lunch and dinner, consume lots of vegetables and lean meat.
The only bread on the plan is Reddy bread.
"The bread is made from soy and flax. It's a very low carb bread and it's been shown to drop blood sugars if you follow the diet," Dr. Reddy said.
And Dr. Reddy believes the proof is in his patients.
Rick Brewton started six months ago.
"You can continue living your life the way you are and you'll have nine or 10 doctors seeing after you," Brewton said.
Brewton has dropped more than 30 pounds. So has William White.
"My cholesterol is actually lower now. It's at 130. It was at 150 with my meds. It's 130 without my meds," White said.
And remember Dori?
"Down here, I went from a size 54 to a 46," he said.
After losing 80 pounds, Dori got rid of his walker, and now he's taking Tai Chi.
Shiflet says he is down nearly 60 pounds.
"It's embarrassing when I look back. I thought I was happy then and felt good, I know now I wasn't," he said. "I was wearing a 52 waist. I've gone down to a 42 waist now."
And Williams no longer needs all those meds. In the past six months, she's lost 75 pounds.
"It has really changed my life. I am more positive, more outgoing," Williams said. "When you feel better, you're happier."
Not everyone agrees with Dr. Reddy's stance on cutting out all fruit. Nutritionists with whom we spoke say fruits are a great source of vitamins and antioxidants.
healthcheck, gina gaston
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