Sid Roth - 95 Pound Weight Loss Transformation
Sid Roth: Hello. Sid Roth here. Welcome to my world where it's naturally supernatural. My guest believes that 99 percent of all sicknesses and diseases can be reversed if you change your eating habits. Would you like to find out? Now I'm with my good friend, Dr. Michael Brown. Mike, how long have we known each other?
Michael Brown: We became friends in 1984.
Sid Roth: That's a long time.
Michael Brown: Thirty-three years.
Sid Roth: And I remember your wife saying, "I'm so worried about my husband. He could eat pizza three meals a day". Could you?
Michael Brown: Listen, I taught at a Bible school on Long Island from '83 to '87, and two miles from the school was one of the best New York pizzas I ever ate at in my life. We estimated at that pizzeria I had 3000 slices of pizza in four years at one pizzeria.
Sid Roth: Now if someone had walked up to you back then, and your wife probably did, and said, "Mike, are you addicted to food, what would you have said?
Michael Brown: No, of course not. I was addicted to drugs. I was shooting heroin, using LSD, a crazy lifestyle. I was addicted to the needle. But no, I wasn't addicted to food. Although if you pressed me about and said don't have pizza for a week I probably would have gotten the shakes. And if you said you can't have chocolate, listen, I used to have Oreos for breakfast when I was boy growing up. I had chocolate almost every day of my life for years, and if I went without it, it would be withdrawal. But I didn't connect it to be addicted, a chocoholic, because I'm a man of God.
Sid Roth: Were you addicted?
Michael Brown: Of course I was addicted. I was a slave to it.
Sid Roth: Three years ago, describe what your health and weight was.
Michael Brown: All right. I was pushing hard in ministry. I was going for it, I was working out, but I weighed 275 pounds. My blood pressure was 149/103. My cholesterol was as high as 230, the good was low, the bad was high. I had three to four headaches a week, constant lower back pain, drained, tired all the time, severe sleep apnea. I needed a breathing machine, anywhere I traveled around the world, had to have that. And I was getting worn out. And I remember sitting with Nancy for the first time in my life, because at this time I was 59 years old, for the first time I said, "I'm getting tired about the future". I couldn't wait for tomorrow. I couldn't wait for next year. I was getting worn out and it was all due to years of unhealthy eating.
Sid Roth: What would you say pushed this dramatic, I mean, I still can't get over, 33 years I've known him. I saw him sitting in the back, here, I wouldn't have even recognized him, really. Now if he opened his mouth and talked I would have. How much weight did you lose?
Michael Brown: I lost 95 pounds in less than eight months, not by dieting, but by changing my lifestyle dramatically. Blood pressure went from 149/103 down to 100/65. Cholesterol went down from 230 to 123. The good is now to where it's supposed to be, the bad is where it's supposed to be. Haven't had a headache in two and half-plus years, no more back pain, no more breathing machine. My immune system is strong, energy level totally off the charts, and this was by God's grace. God broke through. God helped me to make a radical change. And Sid, if he can help me, trust me, he can help anybody.
Sid Roth: This is hard for me to believe. When I think of my friend Dr. Brown I see him as a champion of standing up for the Word of God. And yet he reached a breaking point in which he cried like a baby. We'll be right back.
Sid Roth: Okay Mike, I'm going to take you to that day, September 9, 2014.
Michael Brown: All right. Let me give you the background. I had been crying out to God. Nancy had been crying out to God. We didn't know it, but we were both praying about my diet, my health. And I said, you know, I'm a man of God. I'm a serious servant of the Lord and yet I'm overweight, I'm obese. This is not right. I got to that breaking point. August 24, we started a new lifestyle. Nancy said, "Just eat what I give you". That meant getting rid of all the foods I had eaten all my life, getting rid of the addictions. And then it meant eating foods I would have paid you money to avoid in the past. But the amazing thing is when you change what you feed your taste buds they change as well. So I make the break. Three days of miserable withdrawal. It was harder for me to give up chocolate than to give up heroin. I remember on the third night I was crying out to God. I said, "Jesus, you were so real for me. You set me free from heroin. I didn't need it". I said, "Surely the powerful of the Spirit is more powerful than the power of peanut M&Ms". And that's when I broke through, the third night. Okay, so I'm doing good now. I'm eating the new food. I'm starting to feel different. I'm starting to lose weight. I'm doing well. I'm into this two and half weeks now, Sid. I'm not feeling deprived anymore because dealing with our diets we mess up because we just cut back on the bad stuff instead of cutting out. So the addictions are still there and we're craving all the time, and we're always wanting, our body is programmed to want more. I'm free from that. I came home from the radio one day, took a nap and then had to go teach a night class at our Bible school. And somehow I really wanted something sweet, and I thought that's good. Fruit, that's what the sweet tooth is for, fruits, and I was now loving fruits. And in the old days Nancy would send me to the store and say, can you get some stuff, and she'd have to describe the fruit to me because I didn't know what it was.
Sid Roth: I got a new way to pepperoni pizza.
Michael Brown: I would have had a pepperoni with extra cheese, you bet. And I knew what Ben and Jerry's Super Fudge New York Ice Cream was. That I knew. But when I started eating healthily, I'd send her pictures, and she said, "What are these"? She says, "These are blackberries. They're good to eat them". I said, "Okay, great, I'll eat them". So I'd eat fruit. That's it. Well there's no fruit in the house for some reason. But I was craving. So I go to the store, just a convenient store at a gas station, maybe they have them. No, they don't have any fruit. What am I going to do? The fruit juices there have sugar and I don't want to have any sugar. I finally find something that looks healthy and I think, okay, I'm going to have this. But I thought, I can't live like this. You're never going to have a slice of pizza the rest of your life, you're never going to have chocolate the rest of your life. You're going to have fruits the rest of your life. I hit my breaking point, Sid. I am here, literally, I'm about to teach a night class and I feel the weight of this coming down. I can't do it. And literally I'm sitting in my car and I start crying like a baby, literally two minutes before the class, I can't, God, I can't live like this the rest of my life, no pizza, no chocolate. I can't do it. Crying like a baby. And two things were happening, one, I was at the end of myself. I was literally going through this and I thought this is good because this means grace is kicking in because you can't do it. On the other side, the flip side, I was watching myself laughing as it was happening. I wiped the tears from my eyes. I got into teach and that was last night I had a struggle. It has been easy. There has been... And there's a supernatural anointing. Listen, why do we think of it in other areas? Why do we think of it as just getting free from pornography or free from drug addiction, or free from alcoholism, even free from depression? Why can't we get free from bad habits and strongholds, and addictions? And Sid, I honestly believe for every one person who receives a miracle of healing by God's grace, a hundred can receive a miracle of healing if they change their lifestyles. God put healthy stuff and he gave it to us, and if we eat it, it's life-transforming.
Sid Roth: Why would you say food is so addictive?
Michael Brown: All right, listen, we need food to live. That's the first thing. So I was on a plane the other day and they come and offer me this, no, I don't want it. I'm sitting there. Right in my face, do you want, how about this? They come with the best looking chocolate cake I've ever seen on a plane. And they put it right in my nose. Would you like this? Are you sure? Well you don't have that. When I got free from drugs people weren't coming up to me with cocaine and putting it in my nose, would you like this? So there's a difference. So we need food to live and our standard American diet is deadly. It has all kinds of junk in it. You know when you have those potato chips the salt makes you want to have another one. Oreos actually have addicted qualities in them. A study was done by research, I read the study, where they addicted rats to Oreo cookies and to cocaine to see which was the more powerful addiction, which they would crave, and they wanted both equally. So there's stuff in the food that's addictive. And then we have a lifestyle that's just built around us. We have a gluttonous lifestyle. You go to the restaurants and what do they serve? Would you like death by chocolate for dessert? The portions are massive and we're much more sedentary. So it's kind of a perfect storm of bad things coming together. And a lot of us have not learned good eating habits over our lives, and then the fast food lifestyle. And then as Christians, what do we do? Well we don't submit to the sins of the world. We don't get drunk, we don't get enough sleep, but we eat. Everything we do is around food.
Sid Roth: It's gluttony.
Michael Brown: It's gluttony.
Sid Roth: Okay. How about your wife, how did she go along with this? She had her own problems.
Michael Brown: She changed first. Overweight, parallelized, Nancy. And listen, women lose weight differently. They relate differently. They go through pregnancy, different things. And some women, they say, I look at food and I gain five pounds just when I look at.
Sid Roth: I've heard that.
Michael Brown: So she was parallelized by being overweight. She hated it. She didn't want to leave the house. She was just embarrassed. And here she was probably a little over 200 pounds and just not even 5-foot-3-inches tall. So it bothered her all the time. She had aches and pains, was tired, and she thought something is seriously the matter. And she had binged dieted before. She'd do a radical diet and lose 60, 70 pounds, and then her hair would start to fall out, and she'd feel terrible, and then she'd panic and she'd start to eat again. And for her, she just said she was a glutton. She loved to eat and she would just eat more and eat more, and eat more. And she had different tastes than I did, but she'd just pour it in. So she realized I have to change. Something has to change. And she cried out to God. And she read about nutrition for years and years, and years, and understood things and knew that if she just vegetables always, something was missing. And she began to read one doctor, read his stuff and thought, this makes sense. And she made the change herself, and when she made the change it was dramatic. Her whole life changed dramatically.
Sid Roth: How much weight did she lose?
Michael Brown: She went from a little over 200 pounds to 115 pounds. This was thinner than when I met her when we were both 19 years old.
Sid Roth: You know, I found out about what you were doing and I decided that I would do the same thing. I didn't do it to lose weight. That was not my personal objective, although it wouldn't hurt. But I did it for health reasons. My blood pressure was sky high and I was taking a blood pressure pill, and I was praying for all it was worth it, trust me. But it kept going up after the maximum dosage of pills. So I had to take another pill. I didn't take it, but I knew I had to because it just kept inching up and up, and up. And so I did what Mike did, and would you believe, in one week my blood pressure went to normal. I didn't need the second pill. And would you believe in one month I was taking that one pill, I cut it in half. And would you believe, I'm believing that in another month I won't have to even have to have half of that pill. So you made me a believer in one week. You're getting letters of people that are weeping when they get this revelation you got. Their whole lives are being transformed. Do you get many of these?
Michael Brown: It's amazing. On a regular basis Nancy and I are hearing from people. Some of them have been desperate and they're changing. One woman said, "Look, I was not going to be here for my four kids. I'm a type 2 diabetic. I have all these health issues. My mother died young and I was going to die young, and you have given me back my life". And they're off diabetes medication. It's just amazing, amazing story, Sid.
Sid Roth: Okay, I'll tell you what, when we come back I want to get some clues how to get rid of those strongholds, because guess what, just about everyone I'm speaking to is dealing with it.
Sid Roth: Okay. Dr. Mike, you did not know you were addicted to food. In fact, you would have challenged anyone to the limit if they said you're a food addict. How can someone know if they're a food addict?
Michael Brown: There are a number of things you can look at. One is if you know that you'll be healthier, more vibrant, live longer if you change your diet and yet you won't, that shows you're a food addict. If you have secret stashes where you hide food or you eat things when no one is watching you, the unhealthy things, that's an indication. If you don't have a certain food for several days or a week that you actually go through some kind of withdrawal, headaches or something like that, or just the thought if I say, hey, how about cutting this out of your diet, the thought of that makes you shake, I mean, those are signs that you're addicted. And it's a good place to start to say, God, I confess to you that I'm a food addict. And see, when I used to hear people say I'm a recovering drug addict, I thought, I don't buy that. I'm free. I didn't relate to it. I probably judged them. But I live as if I'm a recovering food addict because I know if I open the door, if I play with the thing it could just pull me back in. I was in Israel doing a tour recently and a woman told me that she had been completely free from chocolate for six years. That was an issue in her life and sugar in general. And someone persuaded her, it won't hurt you to have one piece of dark chocolate. She did it and she's been addicted ever since. So we start, God, I confess to you that I'm a food addict. We make it plain. And then we come up with a plan. It's not just a matter of resolve and willpower. We ask God for his grace and then we come up with a plan. We've got to look at all the bad stuff we're eating and cut it out of our diet. Some say, okay, just reduce it and reduce it until you get rid of it. For me, it was a matter of just get rid of it in one day. But either way, you've got get rid of the bad. Don't cut it bad, cut it out and then you eat super healthy foods. I have massive salads every day and they are great.
Sid Roth: I have seen your salad, and trust me, it looks so big, I don't know how you get it down.
Michael Brown: Yes, it's massive, it's wonderful.
Sid Roth: Yes, but a salad. You don't like that. You like pizza.
Michael Brown: Yeah, well it's I love, I thoroughly enjoy a massive salad every day.
Sid Roth: You're not just saying that. I know you.
Michael Brown: I thoroughly enjoy it.
Sid Roth: I know you do, because I have the same.
Michael Brown: It takes a half hour, 45 minutes to eat. You get to enjoy it.
Sid Roth: I haven't mastered that. I still eat mine fast.
Michael Brown: All right, you're getting it. You're getting it. The thing is though you don't feel stuffed afterwards. It's amazing. I have good portions of fruit, especially berries, which I never ate before. Those are super healthy. I have a little grilled meat once a week, but I don't even need it. Some weeks I completely forget about it. And then there are all kinds of healthy recipes. I'm the kind of person that can enjoy the same foods day after day. A lot of people aren't like that. There is amazingly healthy soups you can make. There are amazingly healthy veggie burgers you can make. There is something called pasta made from beans, bean pasta and organic red sauce. I had that and it's delicious to me. I used to pray, God, help me to love broccoli as much as the way I love chocolate. And as I ate the chocolate nothing happened. But when I got rid of the chocolate and started eating the broccoli things changed. It's really amazing. And there are online recipes, there are websites, Youtube where folks show you how to cook in a healthy way. If folks will do it, they come up with a plan and they pray for grace they can be transformed.
Sid Roth: Well it's wonderful that it transformed you physically. It's wonderful that you're going to be around longer, but how did this affect you spiritually?
Michael Brown: First, it's amazing to be free. Every day it's a revelation. And then, look, people come to me and attack me for being overweight. I was a big guy. I worked out. Maybe I got away with it, but I felt lousy about it. It bothered me all the time. It bothered me when I was praying. I just felt this is not right. It literally weighed me down. Now I have wings. You know what I'm saying? You just want to fly. You want to run. And that's how you feel spiritually. And then with your mind sharper, with your energy more, it's just you're much more vibrant in God. And I feel like whatever I'm coming up against there's nothing that stands in the way because of this new lifestyle, and I know I'm living the way God created us to live. So spiritually it's energizing, and then again, I'm not bound. I'm not a slave. My stomach is not my God. It's a wonderful way to live. It's a wonderful way to feel.
Sid Roth: You and your wife firmly believe that 99 percent of diseases can be reversed on this type of a lifestyle. What are specifics you're aware that have been reversed, and what would you call this, a plant-based?
Michael Brown: Yes, plant-based, right, so that you're relying on nature plant, fruit-based and things like that, healthy nuts and seeds in moderation. So for sure, this is documented. Don't listen to me on this. Listen to the nutritionists and the scientists on this. But heart disease can be reversed. Hardening of the arteries, that can be reversed.
Sid Roth: So you don't have to have Alzheimer's when you're older.
Michael Brown: Okay. So something else. It's been demonstrated that a healthy diet like this, a healthy plant-based diet and then exercise with it, that's a great anecdote for mental diseases as you get older, as well. I'm just reading a whole book about that, just about the mind and the brain. I thought because I'm reading the book, what it can do to your brain, make it sharper and clearer as you're getting older. I thought, I'm doing everything in the book for the first time in my life. Type 2 diabetes can be completely reversed. And look, let's be frank, so much of our back pains, so much of our knee pain is from being overweight and God's grace it may heal, but a lifestyle change can just alleviate so much.
Sid Roth: Our time is slipping away and people say when they hear you speak on this subject that there is a supernatural presence when you teach on this subject. Would you pray, not a natural prayer, a supernatural prayer against these strongholds that people have with food addiction.
Michael Brown: Amen. Father, in the name of Jesus, I pray right now for a Holy Spirit of resolve to rise up in people, your people, to say I'm an overcomer. I'm not a slave to food. My stomach is not my God. I'm a child of God. I'm free. I'm liberated. Lord, I pray you'll give them vision and hope that they can change. I pray you put long-term determination within them that they can live differently. I pray, O God, that all the grace you've given to me that has so transformed me in the resolve and determination that you would give to them, and we declare freedom, freedom from unhealthy living, freedom from unhealthy eating, freedom from food addiction, lasting life-long freedom in the name of Jesus.
Sid Roth: As Dr. Michael Brown would tell you, if he can do it, but I'm going to add to it, and if I can do it, you can do it, too.