Another Sunday New York Times, another maddening article and study surrounding the very high cost of medical treatment in the US and the failure of the “free market” to provide better services at lower costs to the population. This time around it was an analysis on the cost of colonoscopy procedures to detect colorectal cancer. I am a firm believer that a lot more government intervention is needed to control costs, but I also like to point out that a lot of effort on behalf of individuals could come a long way to solve this problem. Not even once in the article was it mentioned that there are plenty of studies that show a large decrease in colorectal cancers when dietary fiber is increased. And I mean dietary fiber as in beans, fruits, vegetables and whole grains, and not in dietary supplements, shakes or powders (those don’t work, sorry).
You will be doing yourself a grand favor by cutting down on any kind of meats, eggs and dairy that you usually consume and which contain no fiber at all, and load up on more whole plants (and yes, all are loaded with protein so don’t start me up on that!). And if you missed Michael Pollan’s NYT article on bacteria a few Sundays ago, the availability of lots of dietary fiber (soluble and insoluble) is a key fuel for these beneficial bacteria to thrive in your gut and that will make you thrive. So by all means, let’s complain loudly to fix the mess of the healthcare system we have in place in America, but don’t complain while you eat highly processed cheeseburgers, pizzas and the like. Do it while you chomp a handful of carrots and apples.
Think it’s boring adding fiber to your diet? I can help you do it in fun, tasty ways either one-on-one or in my small group classes. And I’ve got a surprise for you if you take my Veggie Burger Fest class–there are delicious ways to add veggies and whole grains to even your favorite summer cookout plans. Will I see you there?