Rerun of Dr. Joel Fuhrman Talks About Regaining Your Power Through Nutrition, Episode 144

Thank you for listening to this episode from my archives. Stay tuned for a refreshed podcast theme, new guests, and even artwork soon! Send me a DM on Instagram @melissallarena – I would love to hear your thoughts on this “best of episode.”

Are you looking to lose weight? Let’s talk about this top New Year’s resolution, which is the desire to lose weight or increase exercise or just improve our overall diet. Sure, we want to improve our health. But how serious are we when it comes to making the changes necessary to turn our health around? Now, what would be possible if we actually got it right this year?

Today, we have Dr. Joel Fuhrman, a board-certified family physician, seven-time New York Times bestselling author, and nutritional researcher who specializes in preventing and reversing disease through nutritional and natural methods. He’s here to help us understand why we get diseases in this modern era when we’re supposed to be living longer than ever before. He shares how we can regain that power and how we can start leveraging nutritionally dense foods in our lives and that also taste delicious. 

Dr. Fuhrman gives me a sense of hope that despite some diseases being hereditary, they are not a fact in my life nor in future generations. ​​And so, we don’t need to live with the fear of disease if we just get our diet right. 

Many diseases are preventable, including heart disease, diabetes, and cancer. It’s really about changing our food habits, and the relationship we have with food so we can have healthy immune function. And I think a healthy immune function is a heck of a resolution above and beyond fitting into those skinny jeans. 

In this interview, Dr. Fuhrman and I talked about what’s behind the processed foods that are so addictive. Finally, he teaches us how we can feel empowered, that we have a say in what we eat, and ultimately feel successful that can actually achieve our New Year’s resolution of losing weight and feeling healthier. 

Share this episode with someone who is also trying to do better for their health and life. I hope this conversation inspires you to do the same for yourself and in your family as well! 

Dr. Joel Fuhrman’s Biography

Dr. Joel Fuhrman is the author of several books including Eat for Life, The End of Dieting, and Eat to Live, among others. He also has a retreat called Eat to Live, and he shares his lifesaving nutritional protocols with people around the world. Dr. Fuhrman’s work is cited in medical journals and he’s involved with multiple nutritional studies with major research institutions across the U.S. He also serves as the president of the Nutritional Research Foundation. His five PBS shows have raised over $70 million for PBS. 


Curiosity: Be curious about your history in terms of your health and wellbeing (physical, mental, and emotional) and think about what you need to avoid in your life. Take this opportunity to become your own advocate. 

Creativity: It takes so much creativity to whip something together in a kitchen that is not relying on salt, fat, or sugar to make the flavors vibrant and stand out. When it comes to food choices, be more creative with how you piece healthier items together.

Courage: It takes courage to eat differently than everyone around you. It also takes courage to just let everyone else live their lives because we are all able to make our own food choices. Be courageous enough to choose differently and change every generation in the future.

Nutrition: Nutrition has the ability to be much more effective than conventional medical care. When applied therapeutically, nutrition can help people get rid of high blood pressure, diabetes, chronic headaches, and heal autoimmune diseases.

Nutritarian: 90% of common cancers don’t have to happen if the whole population changed their diet to one that was nutrient-rich and phytochemicals. Dr. Fuhrman calls it a nutritarian diet. 

Disease: Conventional and popular medical care and all those medical interventions have almost an insignificant effect in extending human lifespan and preventing disease. But people can live longer and better without the fear of disease and if you are sick, you can even reverse it. 

Education: We have a blossoming obesity epidemic, making more diabetics and younger people getting strokes. Unfortunately, we’re not doing anything to curtail these needless deaths. That’s because we’re not teaching our population about the power of nutrition through reading, writing, arithmetic and nutritional science.

Genetics: Genetics do not play a role in heart disease, unless you eat unhealthily, then you will enable those genetic markers and defects to be expressed themselves. 

Educators: Most doctors are not eating healthy themselves, and they’re overweight and sickly, just like the rest of the population. They’re usually generally as ignorant about nutrition as your average truck driver or librarian because it’s not their job. Their job is to search for things they can treat with drugs and some are surgically trained to treat people. But they’re not really trained to motivate, educate, and inform people to change people’s nutritional eating habits. 

Addiction: Food is highly addictive and how fast the calories get into the bloodstream makes a food more or less addicting. Processed foods and fats have an addictive nature that’s why people emotionally overeat. Concentrated calories can take over dopamine receptors in the brain that makes you want to eat more food resulting in a buildup of toxicity.

Prevention: If doctors agree that people with heart disease shouldn’t have more than 1500 milligrams of sodium a day, then why shouldn’t the whole population do the same?

Health Crisis: We have a healthcare crisis across the modern world. Infectious diseases have climbed from 1990 to 2005 every year, and we’ve been seeing more infection-related deaths before this pandemic. We have an emerging crisis and we’re dying of these diseases of nutritional stupidity.

Awareness: It’s time for people to unravel all the misinformation they’ve learned their whole life and understand why it’s so difficult for people to change their diet and their food preferences. 

Processed Food Abstinence: You have to sometimes have enforced abstinence. But once you abstain long enough, then you start to like and enjoy and prefer this way of eating. Then you realize once you’re out of that addictive trap, you get back control of your brain. You take back control of your life and you’re back to being the creative and thoughtful person you always could have been. 

Self-destruction: The more you’re an addict, it makes people more narcissistic, more self-centered, more interested in instant gratification, and less concerned about other humans and humanity. They’re looking for excuses for why they’re okay to keep being with self-destructive behavior that’s also destroying the environment, the climate and the natural world. 

Knowledge: Our food system is devastating to the Earth’s environment, and we should be learning that in conjunction with our own personal wellbeing. Without the fear of disease means you can enjoy your later years.

Price: People living in a fairy tale think they can eat fried foods, fast foods, and commercial baked goods, but you pay a price for every mouthful that you do. It affects who you are and who you become. Unfortunately, people don’t like that message. 

Family: Parents are giving poisonous foods like donuts and soda pop to kids that are going to destroy their brain and cause depression and autoimmune conditions in their future. Work as a family to revamp your diet to get healthy and you can have a lot of fun. 

Anger and anxiety: Processed foods, fried foods, and commercial baked goods lead to more anger, anxiety, lack of patience, and poor ability to make good choices. They interfere with people’s ability to concentrate, be creative, and think logically because you’re weakening your brain when you eat so poorly.

The power of nutrition: You could eat healthfully for one or two weeks and your risk of having a heart attack could drop by 1000 fold, just because you changed your diet radically over the two-week period.

Links to continue to learn from:


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Melissa Llarena

Melissa Llarena is an author, imagination coach, consultant, speaker, and contributor to ForbesWomen articles that have garnered 4 million + views. She is also the host of Unimaginable Wellness, the podcast for entrepreneurs, founders, and creators who are also moms. Featured guests include GaryVee and Beth Comstock. Melissa holds a psychology degree from New York University, an MBA from the Tuck School of Business at Dartmouth, and a Transformational Coaching Academy certificate. She is training to become a meditation practitioner. Melissa lives in Austin, Texas, with her husband and three sons. Visit

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