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John Bradshaw - Anti-Aging Secrets


John Bradshaw - Anti-Aging Secrets
John Bradshaw - Anti-Aging Secrets
TOPICS: Longevity, Health

John Bradshaw: Thanks for joining me today. This is It Is Written. I'm John Bradshaw. When you open up the Bible, particularly the early chapters of the Bible, you discover that, way back then, some individuals lived a very long time. Methuselah, we know, lived to be 969. Yet in todays society, when somebody gets to 80, 85, 90, we get excited and think theyve lived a long time. A hundred, more common today than it was a generation ago, is an outstanding achievement. But compare that to the Bible, and its, not really so long at all. Today were going to talk about anti-aging secrets. How you can live longer, healthier, happier, and holier from a biblical perspective. My guest today is Dr. John Westerdahl. He is a nutritionist from the Bragg Health Institute in Santa Barbara, California. Dr. Westerdahl, thanks for joining me. Welcome to It Is Written.

Dr. John Westerdahl: Thank you, John. Its good to be with you today.

John Bradshaw: Now, Im fascinated to know that you are a board-certified anti-aging health practitioner.

Dr. John Westerdahl: Yes.

John Bradshaw: Whats that?

Dr. John Westerdahl: Theres a organization called the American Academy of Anti-Aging Medicine. And theres thousands of doctors who are members of this organization, and their specialty is into learning how we can promote anti-aging, live longer and healthier lives. And, uh, so what they have is they have certifications for both medical doctors, board certifications, as well as healthcare practitioners. Im a nutritionist, so Ive taken the exams and become board certified in that area as well. Because thats a big interest of mine.

John Bradshaw: Anti-aging. You cant stop a person getting old. The only way to not get old is to die.

Dr. John Westerdahl: Yeah.

John Bradshaw: The longer you live, the further back in time your birthday gets. But Im expecting that this idea of anti-aging is, is warding off the ravages of Father Time. Is that right?

Dr. John Westerdahl: Yes, it is. And, uh, its not that were against aging.

John Bradshaw: Oh, no.

Dr. John Westerdahl: Were going to age. Were going to get a year older every year. But theres things that we can do to slow the aging process down and, in some cases, even reverse some of that process, by a healthy lifestyle and some of the new technologies in the anti-aging field.

John Bradshaw: Ive heard of this thing, you look at your birth certificate; it says youre 20, 30, 40, 50, 60. But then you can do these little tests and it will tell you your, your health age, and you might be older than your birth certificate says, or doing better. Your bodys younger than that piece of paper might suggest.

Dr. John Westerdahl: Yes. Thats the different between chronological age versus biological age. Chronologically, we get a year, every year we get older. But if you are living a healthy lifestyle, youre taking good care of your health, you dont have the health problems and so forth that a lot of average Americans do, you, uh, can be potentially younger than your chronological age, just by the way you live.

John Bradshaw: Now, if you look at the average age for an individual in a Western society, its not that bad. And the average lifespan that is, is a whole lot longer than it was, say, a generation or a hundred years ago. Now, much of that is due to improvements in healthcare; uh, infant mortality rates are down.

Dr. John Westerdahl: Yes.

John Bradshaw: So those figures dont really give a very accurate picture of how much better were doing today than we were some years ago. Perhaps the numbers overstate the fact.

Dr. John Westerdahl: Yes.

John Bradshaw: So, where are we today with healthcare? How well are we doing as a society?

Dr. John Westerdahl: Were doing very poorly, and I think a lot of people see that today. Uh, the problem is that, from healthcare standpoint, is theres so much emphasis put on cheaper health insurance, or cheaper drugs, uh, less expensive, uh, treatments that we can have, and so forth. Some of those, uh, technologies are miraculous. Its amazing what we are doing today in the science of medicine. However, were not getting to the root cause of the healthcare crisis problem, and that has to do with the way we are living, our lifestyle. Because for 90 percent of the cases, its our lifestyle thats causing the health problems that we have today.

John Bradshaw: A few changes in the way were living our lives would affect our outcomes dramatically.

Dr. John Westerdahl: Yes. And thats why, in addition to the field of anti-aging medicine, this whole area of lifestyle medicine is also emerging for doctors who see, theyre beginning to see the light that we cant spend all this money in healthcare that we are today, and all these exotic treatments in medicines and technologies, that we need to do things that can be less expensive, and thats like simple things: eating healthier, getting regular exercise, learning to control your stress. Lifestyle things.

John Bradshaw: So tell me, then, I go to the doctor, Im a diabetic, I have, um, some kind of, uh, cardiac issue. I might have rheumatoid arthritis. One thing I could do is say, write me some prescriptions, Doctor. And the doctors in many, or most, cases will do just that. But a lifestyle medicine physician might do what?

Dr. John Westerdahl: A lifestyle medicine doctor would sit down with you and take a look at your diet, and say, well, what kind of foods do you eat? Of course, they would do some tests, blood tests, and do the weight, height and weight, all those tests, to get an assessment. But they will look at your diet, theyll look at your exercise and activity habits, all the things related to your lifestyle, really, and see where those may be the causes of the health condition you may have. And, as I said, in the majority of health problems today are diet and lifestyle related. In fact, 70 percent of the patients that we have in our hospitals today are there as a result of diet and lifestyle-related causes.

John Bradshaw: The old saying is, "you are what you eat". So what are some good foods that can, uh, help, uh, perhaps, uh, ward off sickness, or reverse diseases, or, or are anti-aging?

Dr. John Westerdahl: Well, theres one message that I want to get clear to you, and to our listeners today, is that foods from plants prevent the diseases that are killing us. Foods from plants promote health, longevity, and beauty.

John Bradshaw: So, what are some foods? List some quickly, and say, well, these ones are really good for you.

Dr. John Westerdahl: The, uh, research is showing now, eating more fruits and vegetables, particularly colorful fruits and vegetables, can significantly reduce your risk of having stroke and, and, uh, heart disease, and cancer. There are wonderful compounds that we find in these fruits and vegetables that God has put into nature for us to eat, besides just the nutrients, the vitamins and minerals, but the, we call them phytochemicals, which are, include antioxidants. Uh, these are compounds that actually prevent or slow the process of aging. They prevent our cells from rusting, you could say. And, uh, they actually block some of the carcinogens doing their damage to these cells as well.

John Bradshaw: Im excited about that.

Dr. John Westerdahl: Yes.

John Bradshaw: What are the good antioxidant foods?

Dr. John Westerdahl: Colorful fruits and vegetables are the best ones.

John Bradshaw: Carrots.

Dr. John Westerdahl: Carrots. Those have bright yellow colors. Thats beta-carotene, the carotinoids. Your green has carotinoids, including lutein. Your purple colors have these proanthocyanins, they call them.

John Bradshaw: Ive heard that blueberries are good antioxidants.

Dr. John Westerdahl: Blueberries are an excellent antioxidant. And thats why I recommend eating a rainbow of colors, because youre going to get a variety of these wonderful compounds that you find in foods, when you do that.

John Bradshaw: Today, anti-aging foods from the Bible. Before were done, well even share with you a recipe, and well show you some food, and maybe even sample some food, that has definite anti-aging qualities and properties. Anti-aging: living longer, living healthier, living holier, in preparation for the return of Jesus. Well be back with more in just a moment.

John Bradshaw: This is It Is Written. Im John Bradshaw. Thank you for joining me today. Being joined today by Dr. John Westerdahl, a nutritionist and a board-certified anti-aging health practitioner. Today, how you can live longer, how you can even turn back the clock. Thats true, isnt it, turning back the clock?

Dr. John Westerdahl: Yes it is. Uh, through things that you can do in your own lifestyle and the food you eat, your exercise, your lifestyle habits, you can actually slow the aging process and, in some cases, you can actually reverse it.

John Bradshaw: Is anti-aging only for older people? Are you supposed to start this when youre 70, 80, 85 years old?

Dr. John Westerdahl: Its interesting you talk about that, because, um, my daughter, when she was six years old, Id tell people, Shes on an anti-aging diet.

John Bradshaw: And I bet they said, well, looking at her, it seems to be working.

Dr. John Westerdahl: Well, I have to tell you that this is an important thing, because its really sad to see whats happening with our youth today. Actually, we need to get people on anti-aging lifestyles when theyre young. Thats when we should start. Uh, you know, today we have seven-year-old children with adult-onset diabetes. We have young kids who have adult, uh, diseases. I was talking to a nurse the other day. Her 13-year-old son, said she didnt know what to do because her son, the doctor said his arteries are all clogged up.

John Bradshaw: How old?

Dr. John Westerdahl: Only 13 years of age. And I was in the room when the surgeon general said that, based on the way things are going today with obesity and the health problems that were facing with our children today, that it is in this generation, that parents will outlive their own children.

John Bradshaw: Yeah, thats shocking. Ive heard in the last few years some talk about blue zones. These are places around the world, various communities or locations, where people seem to live much longer than populations outside these zones. Can you tell me about those?

Dr. John Westerdahl: Yes, thats actually a term that was developed by Dan Buettner, who is with National Geographic Magazine, where a few years ago they had a special on the secrets of living longer. And they identified these blue zones. These blue zones are areas in the world where people or populations have exceptional health and longevity. In that issue of National Geographic, they identified three different cultures. One is in Okinawa, Japan, where theres a high level of centenarians in that area who follow the traditional Okinawa lifestyle and diet and so forth. The second area was in Sardinia, Italy. And the third, the blue zone of America, was in Loma Linda, California, which is the high population of Seventh-day Adventists.

John Bradshaw: And yet, theyre living long lives in spite of the fact that theyre not living in a bucolic little paradise. So lets talk about these places.

Dr. John Westerdahl: Okay.

John Bradshaw: Sardinia, Okinawa, Loma Linda: what are the factors that contribute to this longevity?

Dr. John Westerdahl: Well, when they look at those different populations, they find some similar patterns. First of all, a lot of them eat a lot of fruits and vegetables. They eat a, predominantly a plant-based diet. So theyre getting a lot of those antioxidants and health properties we talked about earlier. Uh, they have a, uh, culture where theres a lot of socialization with each other. They have, uh, their friends; in the Seventh-day Adventist population they worship together; the community has a similar philosophy of, of life. In, um, Okinawa its the same way. These populations are also, uh, tend to be more active than other parts, their counterparts in their areas where they live. And, um, so theres a number of factors that contribute to their health and longevity.

John Bradshaw: Hmm. Now, you mentioned the Hunza people.

Dr. John Westerdahl: Yes.

John Bradshaw: It Is Written, when George Vandeman was the director and the speaker of It Is Written some years ago, It Is Written traveled to that part of the world and met with the Hunza people, and explored some of the, the health secrets of these people that live long. What can you tell us about the, the Hunzas?

Dr. John Westerdahl: Well, the Hunzas are up in the Himalayan Mountains, very high, used to be northern Pakistan; now it is part of Pakistan. And, uh, they have a very unique lifestyle in that they live a totally natural way of living. They eat all organic food. They eat predominantly a plant-based diet; actually, only 13 days of the year do they eat some meat. The rest of the time they follow a vegetarian diet. Um, theyre amongst the longest living people in the world. Uh, reports of ages up to 120 to 130 years of age, uh, that have been reported in the Journal of the American Medical Association. And I know when Pastor Vandeman went over there, he had a picture of an individual that was 120 years old and was really in good health. They have a, uh, a lifestyle that is similar to these other blue zones in that it contributes to a population that has a lot of centenarians in their population.

John Bradshaw: Now, how do we define aging? What are some of the different theories about aging?

Dr. John Westerdahl: Well, theres a lot of ways of defining it. People think of wrinkles. Youre losing your hair. The typical things we think of aging.

John Bradshaw: I guess Im aging.

Dr. John Westerdahl: And, and we all are aging to some degree, right?

John Bradshaw: Um-hmm. Anti-aging, building healthy cells, and something that you can eat and enjoy. Dont go away. Well be right back.

John Bradshaw: Thanks for joining me today on It Is Written. Today, anti-aging secrets from the Word of God. And when we stop to think about this, we realize that, back near the beginning, it was through eating that which she shouldnt have eaten that Eve lost her life and plunged, along with Adam, the world into sin and shortness of life. Were told in the Bible that we should eat for strength. Dr. John Westerdahl, what do we have here? I said a moment ago that we were going to share something that would be an anti-aging secret, so please explain.

Dr. John Westerdahl: Well, were going to make an anti-aging smoothy for you today thats going to add years to your life and life to your years.

John Bradshaw: All right.

Dr. John Westerdahl: And its going to be based on building healthy cells, so you have a good cell wall, and keep that moisture within the cell, so that keeps us younger.

John Bradshaw: If I need more intracellular water, shouldnt I just drink more water?

Dr. John Westerdahl: You know, thats kind of a, a fallacy. Because if youre drinking all this water all day long, whats going to be happening?

John Bradshaw: Im going to be going to the bathroom all day long.

Dr. John Westerdahl: Youre going to be going, so, youre losing that water. You want to have water thats going to keep within the cells and retained in there to keep them healthy. So really, the best thing to get your water is to eat your water. And thats another reason for eating a plant-based diet: eating the raw fruits, particularly raw fruits and vegetables, have a water within their cells thats going to be much easier to get within your cell.

John Bradshaw: Now, convince me that this isnt cranky. I mean, I can imagine my friend in Tupelo, Mississippi, or in Sedro-Woolley, Washington, or in Billings, Montana, going, ugh, the guy wants to eat his water, he wants to turn me into a rabbit. Help me understand that this is good, solid, healthy, level, mainstream stuff.

Dr. John Westerdahl: Yeah, this is, this is good science, based on what we call the science of cellular water, and is one of the concepts of aging: that we lose our water. As we get older, theres no question, our body water in the body cells, the water within our cells are lost as we get older. So were trying to build healthy cells to keep that water within.

John Bradshaw: All right. Im a believer; Im not a skeptic. All right, what have we got here, and what are we going to put into this machine?

Dr. John Westerdahl: Okay, so, in order to build healthy cells and, were going to start with putting some antioxidants in. This is pomegranate juice.

John Bradshaw: All right.

Dr. John Westerdahl: Pomegranate juice is loaded with antioxidants that...

John Bradshaw: Pomegranate juice.

Dr. John Westerdahl: ...that, uh, help protect cells from damage.

John Bradshaw: All right. Thats good and red. You mentioned before the red, the reds and purples are good stuff.

Dr. John Westerdahl: Thats right.

John Bradshaw: Okay.

Dr. John Westerdahl: And then were going to put a vegetable protein in here. This is soy, soy milk.

John Bradshaw: All right.

Dr. John Westerdahl: So thats going to provide you with good-quality vegetable protein.

John Bradshaw: All right, and you get soy milk at the supermarket, right?

Dr. John Westerdahl: Yes. And thats also part of the cell walls, good protein. And then blueberries.

John Bradshaw: All right.

Dr. John Westerdahl: Probably my favorite fruit. Blueberries are loaded with those antioxidants that protect cells from, um, being damaged.

John Bradshaw: I love blueberries. Some of the best things you can get.

Dr. John Westerdahl: So pour all the blueberries in there.

John Bradshaw: I enjoy growing blueberries.

Dr. John Westerdahl: And then were going to add something that a lot of people may not know about. This is whats called soy lecithin. Now, people dont realize that every cell wall in your body is made of lecithin. So by contributing this, kind of supplementing to this drink some lecithin that will go into your body, so you can absorb it to build those healthy, healthy, uh, cells as well.

John Bradshaw: Where do I get this from? Can I buy it at the supermarket, or...

Dr. John Westerdahl: You can buy that at the health food store. Its usually in a canister or in the bulk bin, and it comes from soybean oil, actually made from soybean oil. Its a type of fat, a healthy fat.

John Bradshaw: Thats good for you.

Dr. John Westerdahl: Thats good for you.

John Bradshaw: All right.

Dr. John Westerdahl: And then were going to add ground flax seed. And flax seeds today are known as like the new fish oil. Those are a plant-based, Omega-3 fatty acid.

John Bradshaw: Now, why are Omega-3s good? They do what?

Dr. John Westerdahl: Omega-3 fatty acids are essential fatty acids that we need in our diet every day for good health. And its the type of fat that helps build that cell wall.

John Bradshaw: Has cancer-fighting properties too.

Dr. John Westerdahl: Has cancer-fighting properties, and theres heart-health properties as well.

John Bradshaw: By the way, if you can, if you can eat food thats going to fight cancer, you might as well.

Dr. John Westerdahl: Thats right.

John Bradshaw: Thats just good common sense.

Dr. John Westerdahl: And then were going to add something thats unique to probably some of our viewers today, and thats goji berries. These are one of the most nutrient-dense foods on the face of the earth. Goji berries grow in China and the Himalaya areas, and theyre very rich in antioxidants as well.

John Bradshaw: Okay.

Dr. John Westerdahl: So theyre like the new superfood that everyones talking about.

John Bradshaw: Oh, yeah. Goji berries.

Dr. John Westerdahl: So put those in. You get those at the health food store.

John Bradshaw: Okay.

Dr. John Westerdahl: Okay. And I think what were going to do to sweeten this, we dont want to add sugar. And Im going to add an herbal sweetener called Stevia. This is an interesting sweetener. It comes from a green leaf grown in Paraguay, and, uh, its hundreds of times sweeter than sugar, but theres no calories. So were going to put just a little bit of that in as a sweetener. Its not an artificial sweetener; its a natural sweetener.

John Bradshaw: Okay.

Dr. John Westerdahl: And I think well blend this up before we put the ice in.

John Bradshaw: Let me ask you a question.

Dr. John Westerdahl: Yes.

John Bradshaw: If you cant find Stevia at a grocery store near you, I dont know if they have that at Piggly-Wiggly or Vons, or just where they have it. What do I use in place of it?

Dr. John Westerdahl: Well, Stevias an optional ingredient, if you want to make it sweeter.

John Bradshaw: All right, all right. You dont have to.

Dr. John Westerdahl: You dont have to add it. So weve added it. You bet. Okay, and were going to, uh, are you going to turn it on now for me?

John Bradshaw: Well, why not? Here we go.

Dr. John Westerdahl: And the Vitamix mixer/blender here. And well blend that up. And thats going to blend all the ingredients. Turn that off. Well add the crushed ice. Now, crushed ice will just make it cooler. So we'll add some uh, this in here. Thats good. So you want to turn that on again, John?

John Bradshaw: Sure.

Dr. John Westerdahl: Okay.

John Bradshaw: All right, what have we got? What are the...

Dr. John Westerdahl: And we have the anti-aging smoothy here for you. See what you think. Here you go.

John Bradshaw: All right. All right, Ill take your word, Ill take your word for it. Do I have to stop, or can I keep drinking?

Dr. John Westerdahl: Oh. Go ahead!

John Bradshaw: I feel younger all ready.

Dr. John Westerdahl: Good. You look younger.

John Bradshaw: You know, thats good. And if it means Im going to live longer and healthier and more prosperously, Im all for it. But thats pretty simple.

Dr. John Westerdahl: It is. Very simple.

John Bradshaw: Foods that you can buy in most any supermarket. If its not at the supermarket, its at the health food store. And if you dont have a health food store in town near you, drive to one, or move. Thats not bad.

Dr. John Westerdahl: Good.

John Bradshaw: And the idea of this is, this is going to promote healthier cells that will retain intracellular water.

Dr. John Westerdahl: Yes.

John Bradshaw: And youll do better.

Dr. John Westerdahl: Thats right.

John Bradshaw: Thats not bad! Now, let me ask you another question. Can I ask you about other smoothies that are pretty popular today?

Dr. John Westerdahl: Sure.

John Bradshaw: How about the idea of, like, juicing kale and celery and carrots and that stuff?

Dr. John Westerdahl: Those are anti-aging smoothies too.

John Bradshaw: They are?

Dr. John Westerdahl: Yes, because youre getting the benefits of those plant foods. Those green foods are very important. Most people dont get enough greens in their diet, and has those antioxidants and lutein and these other phytochemicals, because most people dont eat a lot of greens.

John Bradshaw: Hmm.

Dr. John Westerdahl: So its a great way of getting vegetables into the diet in these, in these types of smoothies.

John Bradshaw: Is there anything that you dont want to be putting into them? Are there any foods that you should just stay away from as pro-aging?

Dr. John Westerdahl: If you're adding ice cream to it and some of these rich dairy products and so forth, a lot of people do that. Or theyll add a ton of sugar in it. That, that really takes away from the health benefits.

John Bradshaw: Okay. And why is chocolate cake not an anti-aging food? Serious question.

Dr. John Westerdahl: Chocolate cake, of course, is loaded with sugar, fat, and, uh, its just, uh, eggs, and all types of things that they put into chocolate cake that, uh, is going to promote aging. And actually, those ingredients will damage the cell walls. So thats the thing: we want to get away from these foods that promote the damage to our cells, and eat foods that build healthy cells, which build healthy bodies.

John Bradshaw: Now, how about when people go out to eat? What should they be looking out for?

Dr. John Westerdahl: First of all, eating out, theres a lot of things that you dont know youre getting in your diet, because they add a lot of additives in their cooking, sometimes. Um, you want to stay away from foods that are very rich in cholesterol and saturated fat, lots of cheese, lots of deep-fat-fried foods and so forth. But you can go out to eat and eat healthy, too. You can eat anti-aging: going for the salads, going for the vegetables, lean proteins. Uh, thats a better way to go.

John Bradshaw: I read where one of the, where one of the top chefs in New York City said, very openly, that one of the great inside secrets is, to make the food taste better, just add salt and fat.

Dr. John Westerdahl: Well, theres a whole book written about that: fat, salt and sugar. And those are the things that are addictive substances to our, to wanting to eat more of those types of foods. So we need to learn how to eat closer to Gods original plan, eating those natural foods, those natural flavors that Hes put in all these foods right here.

John Bradshaw: Dr. Westerdahl, thank you.

Dr. John Westerdahl: Thank you! Thanks for joining us today. Its been wonderful having you here on It Is Written.

Dr. John Westerdahl: Great to be here.

John Bradshaw: Well, lets pray that that day comes soon. And we want to pray that you will enjoy a closeness with Jesus that will assure you of eternal life. Lets pray. Our Father in Heaven, we thank You today for the greatest anti-aging secret of all: faith in You through Your Son, Jesus Christ. We thank You that Your plan is to give us a more abundant life, that Your plan is for us to live eternally and to live closely with You. While we are here on this earth, give us grace to maximize the opportunities You give us, to lengthen the time You give us, to make the most of the years that we have, so that our lives will reflect Your character and bring glory to You. We look forward to the day when Jesus returns and says, Well done, thou good and faithful servant. Let that day come soon. Thank You for the hope that we have in You, and for the greatest anti-aging secret of all: eternal life. Bless us, we pray, in Jesus name, Amen.
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