During a whistle-stop visit to South Africa, Dr. Partha Nandi joined local, holistic health champion and campaigner, Stacey Holland, host of REAL HEATH, at a viewer event with The Home Channel in Johannesburg.

In an open discussion about the impact of living a holistic lifestyle as a preventative measure against disease, Dr. Nandi and Stacey unpacked some of the benefits of nutrition, exercise and mental wellbeing as a means of not only preventing disease but also aiding in the recovery process. Some of the regular guests from REAL HEALTH also joined Dr. Nandi and Stacey to take the discussion further, talking about the importance of repairing and maintaining a healthy gut. From food to stress and an active lifestyle, Dr. Nandi and the team offered up indispensable advice to the audience, some of whom shared their own health stories.

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Speaker 1:We’re feeling better.

 

Dr. Nandi:I live and practice in Detroit, and I believe our city and the people that live here represent the best of America. I wanted to create a place that folks can go to that not only delivers health information, but also helps us share inspirational stories to help all of us grow, with real problems discussed in-depth with real solutions.

 

Speaker 3:You are right.

 

Dr. Nandi:You’re the most important person. You’re the patient. This is “Ask Dr. Nandi”.

 

Thank you.

 

Stacey Holland:Thank you all of you for joining us today as well, but mostly thank you to you, Dr. Nandi.

 

Dr. Nandi:Oh, it’s my pleasure. Thanks for having me.

 

Stacey Holland:What has been your first impression of South Africa? Because it’s a whirlwind trip, right?

 

Dr. Nandi:It really is. It’s delightful. The country visually is spectacular, but what’s really struck me are how warm the people are. It really is. I was in Durban, and I went from the downtown Convention Center to the Township, and from the downtown Center, to the people that helped me, to the Township. We visited some orphans from HIV with an organization called Key of Hope, and they were so … They had very little but they wanted to give everything they had. It was unbelievable. It was just, you love the visuals, the spectacular visual view but at the end of the day, the humanity that you touch, and when people give of themselves and they have very little, that’s when it really plays into your heart, so I love that.

 

Stacey Holland:That’s why you do what you do.

 

Dr. Nandi:Exactly. We call it having a purpose driven life and so many people have a purpose driven life, like yourself, in this country that are doing so much to help their citizens, it’s unbelievable. I was at the AIDS Conference, I told you, and it was a historic time because it was the second time that it was held in South Africa in Durban. This time they said, “We’re going to eradicate the disease by 2030,” and people, it was a positive vibe. There wasn’t this doom and gloom that, “We’re failing.” The country’s efforts are so monumental that we can learn so much in North America from the efforts of texting people to take their medications, having the majority of the world’s patients getting the medicine from the government. I mean there’s, you can talk about the failures, right?

 

Stacey Holland:Yeah, which is easy to do.

 

Dr. Nandi:Always look at the glass half empty, but the glass is quite full as well and we can learn from South Africa, and that’s what was great about it.

 

Stacey Holland:Is that something that you think we can achieve as a country?

 

Dr. Nandi:Absolutely.

 

Stacey Holland:To eradicate it by 2030?

 

Dr. Nandi:I did some filming of international leaders and experts in HIV and AIDS and I highlighted that, so we’re going to take it back to the States. We talked to some activists, and bring it back and create a film showing what’s really going on.

 

Stacey Holland:Awesome.

 

Dr. Nandi:The world knows very little about South Africa. They have some, they know that it’s by the Indian Ocean and there’s some spectacular views but the people and what it’s about and what’s actually going on, the spirit of the people, it’s invigorating.

 

Stacey Holland:Yeah. I often get asked when I say I’m from South Africa, people say, “But where?” I say, “No, South Africa.” “Yeah, but which country in Africa?” “No, it’s a country. It’s called South Africa.”

 

Dr. Nandi:Unfortunate, isn’t it?

 

Stacey Holland:It is. You didn’t get to try out bunny chow in Durban, which is so disappointing. I cannot get over that.

 

Dr. Nandi:I go there and they said there’s something called a bunny chow. I said, “A bunny chow, is this food for bunnies?” They said, “No.” They said-

 

Stacey Holland:I’m cutting this segment out, don’t worry.

 

Dr. Nandi:Because I’m Indian and I came and I was nine to the U.S., and they said this was developed by Mr. Patel, I guess, in Durban many, many years ago, right? Scooping up … You know what it is but I was, I said, “I want to have a bunny chow,” but nobody in Durban could give it to me so apparently, they are going to treat me to bunny chow, which I’m excited about.

 

Stacey Holland:We’re bringing you back to South Africa just so that you can have a bunny chow.

 

Dr. Nandi:Now, it’s not part of health and wellness but-

 

Stacey Holland:You got to try it.

 

Dr. Nandi:You got to live, sometimes, right?

 

Stacey Holland:Well, you actually have an 80-20 rule. Tell us a little bit about that, because I’m sure the bunny chow would fit into the 20 percent, right?

 

Dr. Nandi:Yeah, and so you asked me before, said, “What do you do with your … Why do you do this program?” I do this program called “Ask Dr. Nandi” because we want to empower people with tools that are easy that people can follow, and one of them is nutrition.

 

The word “diet” to me is a swear word because, right? Because diet is to me … It’s because it actually means failure to me. When you have diet, it means you’re going to fail, so I don’t like the word “diet.” I like lifestyle, and a whole approach to eating. One of the rules I have is 80-20. Do well with your diet at least 80 percent of the time, but you got to live 20 percent of the time.

 

Stacey Holland:Yes.

 

Dr. Nandi:Right?

 

Stacey Holland:Yes.

 

Dr. Nandi:When you’re on vacation, when you’re out with your friends once in a while, you shouldn’t be paralyzed that, “If I eat that piece of cake, I’ll explode.” That happens. There are people, there are friends of mine that, “I don’t know …” They’re thinking 20 minutes about eating a little sweet. That can’t happen. Because food should be enjoyed.

 

The other thing is food needs to enjoyed and you can do that and still have a healthy lifestyle. They key is, are you looking for a six pack so you can lift up your shirt and people can admire you, or are you looking for a healthy body? That to me is the key. You’re looking for a healthy body and a healthy weight, not one that’s an Instagram, right?

 

Stacey Holland:Yeah.

 

Dr. Nandi:Instagram, photoshopped, body.

 

Stacey Holland:Photos, certain poses, you have to pose a certain way.

 

Dr. Nandi:Exactly. Or Snaps. I Snapped. I looked and I photoshopped myself with, there’s a beauty, a program that makes your face slimmer, et cetera.

 

Stacey Holland:It cinches your nose in, it gives you a facelift.

 

Dr. Nandi:Yeah, and young people in the United States, around the world are trying to embody that. My 80-20 rule, and then I try to have people eat what they like. Make sure you eat a rainbow of vegetables. What I mean by that is pick vegetables, a rainbow of colors, go outside, kind of your comfort zone.

 

Like my son loves broccoli, that’s his favorite food. He loves it, but I want him to also try a little bit of eggplant. I want him to try a little bit of other types of food, and that’s the idea, but eat what you like, just don’t eat a hundred pounds of it every day, and try to restrict yourself.

 

I mean so we give them diet habit as well as fitness and a purpose driven life. I think the key is the “why,” right?

 

Stacey Holland:Yeah.

 

Dr. Nandi:In order to make any changes, and you guys know this, you have to have a purpose. If you have no purpose, then you’re just wandering aimlessly about, like if you get stuck in Durban traffic, you could be sitting there for hours, right? If you have no purpose, you can just drive around and go nowhere, and people do that all the time.

 

You have to develop in your mind, “Why am I doing this?” For me it’s we have a television show and a brand and we have this purpose. For you, it could be just being the best parent or being the best teacher. Whatever it is that drives you to have a healthier lifestyle and then the health follows. Kids cannot remember their school work but they know every line of their favorite song, right?

 

Stacey Holland:Jam.

 

Dr. Nandi:They’re like bopping around with their headphones. (singing) You can’t even understand what they’re saying but they could speak it, why? Because they have a purpose, they love it, it’s no effort. Imagine doing that with our bodies and with our life. It’s not easy to do. It takes 15 to 20 minutes. I’m writing a book about it, I told you called “Be Your Own Health Hero,” and finding out ways to … Once you have the purpose, you can go forward.

 

Stacey Holland:We’ll be right back with Dr. Nandi after this.

 

Speaker 1:We’re feeling better. We’re feeling better.

 

Stacey Holland:Thanks again for joining us on “Real Health.” It’s a special edition of “Real Health.” We have Dr. Nandi with us in studio. Dr. Nandi, I want to take a step back.

 

Dr. Nandi:Yes.

 

Stacey Holland:We see the show, Dr. Nandi. You’re a TV host, you’re an author, you’re a practicing gastroenterologist, you’re a husband, you’re a dad. At the end of the day, how do you manage to just keep it all together?

 

Dr. Nandi:I’m very blessed. I have faith and spirituality and I feel the center of my world is my family. What that does is that it gives you the energy and the efficiency to do what you want. Obviously, there are time limits so you can’t do everything all the time but what I remember at the end of the day, why am I doing this? I’m doing this so my kids can have a better life than I have, or at least the same life.

 

What’s happening now is that with all the stuff that’s happening in the world, I am almost sure that if we don’t do something, they’ll have a much worse life experience than I will. That drives me. I want to leave the planet a better place, so when you have those things driving you, you don’t just roll out of bed, you jump out of bed. When you jump out of bed, you can’t wait to see what happens.

 

Like today, Annie picked me up. Annie is our, works with us, with this organization. I was excited because I wanted to see what the world had to … What I could do differently. Then you make time for everything, you don’t waste time. I get into less trouble also because I have so much to do, you know what I mean?

 

Sometimes you’re the most efficient when you’re the most busy. Again, I wouldn’t recommend people doing what I’m doing, it’s what works for me, it’s what drives me. If for you, being the best parent or the best teacher or the best worker is your goal, then do it. Yes, I do a lot because I really want people to have the tools, as many tools in their toolbox to be able to live the healthiest life.

 

Stacey Holland:It seems like we’re in a world where it’s hard to formulate one’s purpose because it feels like we just survive on a daily basis. I don’t know if you get that sense as well. You think to yourself, “I want to have a vision for my life. I want to have a plan every day,” but it’s just so hard to get there. You know, “The journey of 1,000 miles often begins with one step.”

 

Dr. Nandi:Yes.

 

Stacey Holland:Often people struggle with that first step, so how do we start finding our purpose?

 

Dr. Nandi:What I tell people is, “Listen, what is it that makes you the happiest? Tell me …” Just when they come and talk to me, my patients. “What makes you the happiest?” They tell me whatever. Somebody will say, “I love watching the soccer match, and I love it in that moment.” Or whatever it is. I say, “Well, what are you doing in your life to make that happen?” They often, they’re shocked because they’ve never stopped to think about it.

 

In fact, most people in the Western world, in modern 2016, don’t even stop for a minute to even think about anything, right? When’s the last time you just stopped and did nothing? You can’t remember, can you? That is what it takes, to actually stop-

 

Stacey Holland:It’s difficult to do that, actually.

 

Dr. Nandi:Well, it is …

 

Stacey Holland:I think about-

 

Dr. Nandi:Here’s what I tell people. “Stop looking at that thing in your hand.”

 

Stacey Holland:Yes, you’re right.

 

Dr. Nandi:“Stop looking at that thing in your hand.” It’s our new prison. Some people have to keep up with their Facebook feed. “What just happened? What did I miss 10 seconds ago?”

 

Stacey Holland:Yeah.

 

Dr. Nandi:Right? Our kids are on Instagram all the time. I have a 13-year-old daughter and I have to convince her that, “You know what? This is the amount of hours you can be on the phone.” I don’t want them to be technologically deprived but, again, going back, the amount of wasted hours we have doing ridiculous things that don’t really help you, just stop. I say even stop for a minute.

 

My mom taught me this a long time ago. I was born in India and she said, “Just spend once an hour,” said, “Just for 60 seconds, just close your eyes. Breathe and do nothing.” It is amazing what happens. The things that bug the crap out of you stop bugging the crap out of you because you have perspective.

 

I was on the plane ride. It’s 17 hours to go from here to the U.S., right? I had a couple moments to do that. I continue to kind of learn and do that. The first step, and to answer your question is, is stepping back and say, “What is it all about?” Because really, you can’t take your 10 cars with you. You can’t take your giant house with you. You can’t take your bags of money with you, right?

 

What do you want to leave on this planet as your legacy? What do you want to do for yourself? That’s the first step. Is it easy to do? No. It took me months. I didn’t come to this conclusion overnight, it took me months. Once you get there, I’ll tell you, it’s an amazing thing. There’s a cliché, they say, “Find out what you love, and then find out how you can make a living doing it,” right?

 

Stacey Holland:Yeah.

 

Dr. Nandi:It may mean that you do two jobs for a little while. It may mean that you do some sacrifices, that you may not have that three bedroom house with tile floors for a while, right? What satisfies you is amazing.

 

I have a little story. I was in India at age 16. I was riding the bus and Calcutta has almost the same traffic pattern as Durban, can you believe that? You go nowhere quickly. I had a lot of time-

 

Stacey Holland:It’s not that bad, Dr. Nandi.

 

Dr. Nandi:This morning, let me tell you, let me tell you …

 

Stacey Holland:It is that bad.

 

Dr. Nandi:I know every inch of that street, every … “Oh, there it goes, yes. Oh, there it goes, another centimeter.”

 

Stacey Holland:You’re knowledge of Durban increased tenfold, right?

 

Dr. Nandi:It increased because I know every little part. In all seriousness, I was sitting on a public bus and I looked out the window. India, because it was a colonial region, Calcutta had these broad avenues. In the center was a little boulevard. There was a family, there was a family in the street, living on the street.

 

They had something that you don’t always see in Detroit, which is a smile on their face. There was a father teaching his kids, on the street, teaching his kids schoolwork, going through and writing and whatnot, two kids. In the other corner, in the middle of the street was a mother cooking with a little kerosene. It hit me, “They’re actually happy and content with nothing.”

 

The key is purpose driven life is not about materialistic things. I don’t mean to say that, “Listen, you don’t need any money to live.” I’m not crazy. You need, right, you need to be real but at the end of the day, when does it stop? What promotion will it take for you to finally get there? What house, what car? It’s all ephemeral, it’s transient and you can never reach it. When you have a purpose driven life, you feel satisfied. I call it holistic living. People say, “What do you mean about holistic living, Doc? What ‘ya talking about, man? Telling me holistic living, man.” Because I’m in Detroit, they go, “Come on, man. Give me this hol- … I got a real disease, Doc. Come on man, let’s get to it.”

 

Stacey Holland:Yeah. It seems like it sits up here and they want you to bring it down, yeah.

 

Dr. Nandi:Correct. What I tell them is that holistic living means how to become whole. Because there’s a void in all of us. One of the tremendous things that’s happening to us is we’re losing our family unit. Our family unit, there’s so many one parent families around the world and individualism is worshiped now. Throughout our history as humankind, we have always been in communities, that’s what made us thrive. We’re going away from that. The only community we have is with our phone. Our phone and us are really …

 

Stacey Holland:With people that we don’t know, yeah.

 

Dr. Nandi:With people, and we are interested in their lives. Again, we talk about spirituality and say listen, you know what? If you have spirituality and you’re home-centered, it helps you, that’s intuitive. Now, guess what? Western medicine’s doing research to show you live longer. Guess what? You go to your doctors more often. You do screening tests that save your life when you have spirituality in the home. Then once you have a purpose driven life and you know if you have a purpose driven life, you have to fuel this body so you can achieve that purpose. Well, how do you fuel it? You don’t put kerosene in your gasoline powered car, do you? You don’t. Yet, we will put crap in our bodies all day long, all day long. Kerosine equivalents every single day. Things that you’d find in a toxic waste dump, in your food.

 

I tell people, “If I give you six pills with no labels, would you take them?” “Of course not, Doc, you crazy.” I said, “Okay. Well, if I give you six morsels of food with little containers with no labels, would you eat them?” 100 percent you would. No idea what it is. No idea what the companies that are only interested in making money, that’s it. Zero interest in your health. You would do that so, again, the first step is understanding what’s in your body, what you need, and then preparing your own food. Very simple. Prepare your own food instead of having somebody else prepare it. It may not take … In modern day, it may not take more than 15 minutes to prepare. If you do simple things, you fuel your body.

 

Then lastly, get off the couch, man. Get off the couch, get your rear-end off the couch. I can’t say what I normally say because we’re on television. Because they’re so busy either watching television … You should watch “Real Health” and Dr. Nandi, but aside from that, don’t watch any television.

 

Stacey Holland:Yeah, I like that.

 

Dr. Nandi:Right? No on the show. Then, our kids, right? They’re on the phone, they don’t want to move, and the only time they want to move is “Pokémon Go.” Looking for things that don’t exist. I mean it’s a travesty. If you just move, what I say is, “If you could even move five minutes a day, Mr. Jones.” Says, “I’ve got no time for this doctor. Tell me something I can do. I can’t move, I’m too busy. I’m too busy for my health.” I said, “Well, can you just move five minutes?”

 

Even if you can walk five minutes a day, that will change your numbers. “Now, what do you mean, numbers?” I said, “Well, changes your heart rate, changes your blood pressure.” Guess what? Reduces heart disease and stroke. Reduces this little enzyme, this little product called cortisol that ravages your body. “You have five minutes?” “Well, I have five minutes.” That’s the idea. Simple things, big, big results. People say, “Well, this is simple.”

 

I actually went to a television conference. I was at a television conference, this network executive said, “So Doctor, tell me the secret of longevity and wellness.” I said, “Well, I think you have to eat a little less and move a little more.” “That’s all you’ve got?”

 

Stacey Holland:It’s that simple?

 

Dr. Nandi:I said, “That’s all everybody’s got. Everyone else is lying to you and giving you all these bag of tricks, which don’t exist.” Because one of the things people say, “Well, how does Rebecca stay thin? She’s always eating.” You ever heard that? “How does this person … She should be 500 pounds.”

 

Stacey Holland:They eat whatever they want and they stay skinny, right?

 

Dr. Nandi:They don’t eat 500 pounds of it. They eat small amounts all day long. You eat when you’re hungry. If you want to eat five times, that’s great. Just don’t eat the entire restaurant.

 

Stacey Holland:Is it as simple …

 

Dr. Nandi:In America, there’s a buffet, right? “It’s me against the buffet, and I’m going to win. I’m going to get my money’s worth. I’m going to eat everything on that buffet,” and so guess what? You lose as an individual. People think they will win because it’s 9.99 in the U.S., 9.99, it’s never 10. 9.99 and you can eat the buffet. You think, “I have to eat every Chinese dish there,” and that’s the problem, and everything is supersized, right? I mean the Cocoa-Cola is about the size of my … I mean this big, so that’s the problem. Rebecca eats, but she eats small amounts, so it’s easy things we can do.

 

Stacey Holland:Is it as simple as calories in, calories out, though?

 

Dr. Nandi:I think so. It’s the simple thing as you have to eat what you need and not more. I have a rule that says, “Eat until you’re two-thirds full.” By the time that little brain of yours figures out that it’s full, it’s too late, because it doesn’t catch up. Ever been there when you think, “I got a little bit more room”? You eat there and then later you said, “Oh my gosh.”

 

Stacey Holland:Yeah.

 

Dr. Nandi:I mean you think if you put a pin in there it’s going to just pop out, right? For two-thirds full.

 

Stacey Holland:I know, that’s right, I’ve tried that. I’ll be honest with you. I’ve tried stopping when I feel satiated, it’s never worked. I’ve tried to be the type that eats one block of chocolate. I always end up finishing the entire bar or entire bag of whatever it is. I don’t know if it’s partly-

 

Dr. Nandi:Make containers then.

 

Stacey Holland:Okay.

 

Dr. Nandi:What I would do is … Some people will say, “I can’t do it.” I say, just put the food that you want into a container. The Okinawans have an idea, Okinawa, Japan. They said, “Don’t eat more than your fist.”

 

Stacey Holland:Just that, yeah, yeah.

 

Dr. Nandi:They do this. They eat until they’re about 75 percent full, and they have one of the largest group of centenarians, the people that live over 100, but not 100 in a nursing home not knowing what’s going on.

 

Stacey Holland:Vibrant and healthy.

 

Dr. Nandi:Vibrant life with their grandchildren, with their family, so enjoying themselves and actually living longer, if you want to work longer, whatever else. These are simple things you can do, but people have told me that, they go, “I can’t do it.” I said, “Well, you’ve got to try and not have … If you can’t eat more than two blocks of chocolate, well don’t have that in front of you, right? Just portion out.” One of the anchors in ABC, what he does is he brings little containers of food and he doesn’t eat anything besides that, and that’s what he does. The other thing is the ultimate electron acceptor, water. We have stopped drinking water.

 

Stacey Holland:That is true.

 

Dr. Nandi:We think that water is something that’s not in style. We’ll drink colas, we’ll drink this, we’ll drink fizzy that, fizzy that, everything that’s not healthful, that dehydrates you. The key component is that water, and the last one is sleep. Sleep is brain food. If you don’t sleep … In North America, 25 percent of people sleep adequately. If you don’t sleep, the reparative processes don’t work, including the reparative process that lead to not being obese. One of the things people say is that if you don’t sleep well enough, we don’t have adequate sleep, you have increased chance of obesity. What a concept. People say, “I don’t get it,” but what happens, your body’s idea of repairing itself happens when you sleep and we don’t do it anymore.

 

Stacey Holland:Stay tuned for more with Dr. Nandi after the break.

 

Speaker 1:We’re feeling better. We’re feeling better.

 

Stacey Holland:Thanks again for joining us on “Real Health.” It’s a special edition of “Real Health.” We have Dr. Nandi with us in studio. I actually have a viewer question, since we’re talking about that naughty word “diet.” Carolyn says, she asks, “What are your thoughts around the Blood Type Diet?” Since we’re talking about individuality and what works for me may not work for you, what’s your opinion on it?

 

Dr. Nandi:I don’t like diets that are restrictive in any way. I think they don’t, they’re not sustained and so …

 

Stacey Holland:Doesn’t the paleolithic, the Paleo Diet, Atkins-

 

Dr. Nandi:All of it. All of it.

 

Stacey Holland:All, okay. Just throwing everything in there.

 

Dr. Nandi:It’s just, well, the thing is, I know it works for people. I don’t want to discount it, if it works for you and you can stay on it, you’re special.

 

Stacey Holland:That’s the question.

 

Dr. Nandi:You’re special, because most people can’t. They can’t keep up with it. Patients of mine have all these diets. They see me in six months like, “Oh, I’m fantastic.” It’s the Oprah Winfrey syndrome, like you used to see Oprah, right? When you see Oprah, “Wow! You’re size two,” or whatever it is. Then you lose it. It’s the idea that you have to make is sustaining. That’s why the word “diet” has to be taken out, the word “lifestyle” has to be brought in, lifestyle. Not just what you put in your mouth, but like you said, calories out. It has to include movement. You can’t sit on your couch and have the blood type diet, the Atkins diet, the bula, bula diet, the shula, shula diet, the flower eating diet, the whole grain diet, the vegetable only diet, the meat only diet-

 

Stacey Holland:The [crosstalk 00:23:37].

 

Dr. Nandi:Meat on Tuesdays, not on Thursdays diet. Look at the sky and then drink water diet. None of that is sustainable, right? Because, “What if it’s a cloudy day? What do I do? I’m done,” right? “I’m cloudy, I’m going to get fat. I’m done.” The idea is that make it a lifestyle that you enjoy. If you’re in Mumbai, India, the food type that you eat is going to be different than you are in the Townships of Durban, South Africa. You find yourself saying, “What can I do that’s commonalities? What are the commonalities?” Have complex carbohydrates.

 

People say, “I don’t need no sugar, Doc. I heard on the television that sugar is bad for you.” I said, “Well, tell me what you mean by that.” “Well, I just said it, Doc. No sugar. Tell me something more.” I said, “Well, there’s sugar that’s complex and sugar that’s simple, both are sugar. Complex carbohydrates are like a vegetable.” “Why is that different, Doc?” I said, “Well, this complex carbohydrate is surrounded by nutrients. A piece of bread is not. A piece of candy definitely is not, sugar yes, complex carbohydrate, no.”

 

You want to get complex carbohydrates. I say 40 to 45 percent of your diet. My son, favorite food is broccoli, over meat. Why? Because that is what his natural tendencies are.

 

Stacey Holland:Wasn’t it because he sees you and mom eating that at home and so …

 

Dr. Nandi:He eats less meat than we do.

 

Stacey Holland:Okay.

 

Dr. Nandi:We eat chicken, we probably eat red meat once a month. He won’t even like that. He prefers vegetables, because we’ve given him those choices. Again, so what it is is that you want to give them complex carbohydrates and lean protein. Some people say, “Okay, low carb, high protein, yeah, let me get me some juicy steaks.”

 

Stacey Holland:Oh, we’re going to have some questions for you.

 

Dr. Nandi:All marble with fat. That ain’t it. Lean sources of protein, which by the way-

 

Stacey Holland:Have you heard about Banting? Have you heard about Banting in South Africa?

 

Dr. Nandi:Yeah, absolutely. People just simplify it.

 

Stacey Holland:I don’t want to criticize it but, again, this is the thing is that we’re so confused because on the one hand you hear lean meats and the other hand you hear, “No, it’s fine as long as it’s grass fed, organic meat.” On the other hand-

 

Dr. Nandi:Fat is still fat.

 

Stacey Holland:Okay.

 

Dr. Nandi:Grass fed fat, organic fat is still F-A-T, fat. It doesn’t matter what kind of … How they’re raised. If you have all these nice marbled meats, ain’t going to do it.

 

Stacey Holland:Okay.

 

Dr. Nandi:I say, “Have lean sources of protein,” including a revolutionary thing called vegetable sources of protein, right? Unbelievable. All the vegetarians in India must be collapsing because they have no protein. People tell me, “Don’t tell me to be vegetarian, Doc. I got to have my protein, man. I’m a strong man here.” I said, “Well, have you ever tried soybeans?” “What’s that?” They don’t understand. They don’t know that broccoli has protein. The lack of knowledge is tremendous, and that’s the reason why we’re doing the show. Because if you don’t know better, you can’t do better.

 

Stacey Holland:I’m glad that you touched on the lack of knowledge because it seems as if the less we know about, number one, how our bodies function and what we should be putting inside our bodies, the more we are aligned, and the plethora of information that is available to us, and that’s when it becomes difficult to make decisions.

 

Dr. Nandi:Including your gardener who can blog, right?

 

Stacey Holland:Yeah, anyone can blog. That’s true, that’s true.

 

Dr. Nandi:A person that is fixing your car can blog and say they’re an expert. Anybody’s an expert now on social media because they all know it. Everybody knows everything.

 

Stacey Holland:On the one hand, it’s not a bad thing because I feel like people are taking responsibility for their own health. I don’t know if any of you agree, and if there’s a question that you want to ask at this point in time, please feel free to ask at any point in time. This is one thing that I’m beginning to see is that I get what you’re saying is that anyone can be an expert. The positivity that I gain from it is that we’re no longer sitting back and saying, “Well, I’m unhealthy because of this reason, that reason, and the next reason.”

 

We’re saying, “If I want to live a healthy lifestyle, if I want to see my kids until a ripe, old experience, my family and enjoy my family until a ripe, old age, I need to do something about it.” Because you mentioned this mindset that we need to have around health, and I was going to touch on it earlier that the reason why I struggle to eat portions is because when I was younger, I was told, “You don’t leave this table until you finish everything on your plate.”

 

Dr. Nandi:That’s right.

 

Stacey Holland:That messed me up.

 

Dr. Nandi:It does.

 

Stacey Holland:Because even if it’s unhealthy and even if I’m full-

 

Dr. Nandi:You want to finish it.

 

Stacey Holland:I feel guilty that I’m leaving all this food on my plate. It’s taken me years to try and get out of that mindset.

 

Dr. Nandi:You’ve done well. I think the whole idea …

 

Stacey Holland:Why thank you Doctor.

 

Dr. Nandi:She’s done well. She looks great, doesn’t she? Stacey does not have a problem. Here’s the thing, when you talk about social media and all the experts, the thing is that is why it’s so important to have your show and, I think, also my show is because we need guides now. Because there’s so much information for the layperson to understand what is going on. It’s tremendously difficult because everybody sounds like they know what they’re doing. The problem is that there’s a lot of misinformation out there. Then you get lost in it because it’s so confusing. Just like you said, “Well, somebody tells me this diet’s fine, and you’re telling me it’s not, and so how do I filter it?”

 

Because people just don’t have fundamental knowledge, and so what we’re trying to do is just give them building blocks. Fundamental knowledge so that when they see something, you kind of know what’s going on and you can make your own judgment. Because of your show, because you’re discerning, you’re not just throwing information out there saying, “This is what I think and this is why we think that,” and you’re bringing experts on. That’s very different than what happens on social media. On Instagram, Kim Kardashian can say whatever she wants and she’s an expert. You and I’d agree that her credentials are far from being an expert.

 

Stacey Holland:Yeah.

 

Dr. Nandi:Her advice is taken full on and that’s what I worry about, is the Kim Kardashian methodology … Listen, she’s doing what she needs to do and that’s how she’s living her life, that’s fine, but what’s happening is our young kids are following that mantra, that’s what I worry about. We need guides like yourself and your show to be able to say, “Could I just give you a little bit of a guiding light? A little bit of a road so that you can then discern what to do.” Because it’s very confusing. I know because I Google it every day I say, “Let me just Google and see, how do I get thin today?” Whoa! I mean the stuff that’s out there is unbelievable.

 

Stacey Holland:Yeah. Well, I think, I’d throw it back at you and say that’s why we need doctors like you.

 

Dr. Nandi:True.

 

Stacey Holland:Number one, you’re empathetic to what we’re going through and number two, you have an integrative mindset. Because one of my favorite books, and I always mention it on the show is GAPS Diet or “Gut and Psychology Syndrome” by Dr. Natasha Campbell-McBride. She says that in an effort to understand and learn more about the body, we’ve compartmentalized the body, hence we have specialists.

 

Dr. Nandi:Correct.

 

Stacey Holland:At the end of the day, the body doesn’t function like that.

 

Dr. Nandi:Correct.

 

Stacey Holland:I think we’ve also gotten tired of saying, “I have a problem in my eye, and I think it may be connected to my big toe,” and being laughed at.

 

Dr. Nandi:Correct.

 

Stacey Holland:Because that’s an intuitive feeling that many of us have had, and now we have doctors like yourself and physicians like yourselves that are saying, “I do agree that there’s an integrative approach.” What are you doing to empower your peers and your colleagues to start thinking more like that?

 

Dr. Nandi:That’s a good question because to me, because I’ve been lucky because of my upbringing. My parents taught me at a very young age that these ideas exist, so I was already empowered and educated, even before I started medicine. The problem is medical school doesn’t teach these things, so these doctors … I mean, I don’t want to blame them too much because they don’t really know. Again, it doesn’t mean the general public, even doctors, if you don’t know better, you can’t do better. What happens is that you get into your world of being so busy and seeing patients, you don’t get educated.

 

What I try to do is tell them, “This is the scientific evidence,” because now, whether you talk about earthing, whether you talk about purpose driven life, whether you talk about … Even have an attitude of … I talked to Annie driving here and I said, “You have an amazingly positive attitude.” Now, science is showing that matters.

 

Stacey Holland:Yeah.

 

Dr. Nandi:Imagine that. It used to be voodoo before, but science is showing you can live with a purpose driven life, seven years longer of a meaningful life, that you actually heal quicker. Amazing. If you’re a person who believes in earthing or grounding, then you actually heal quicker, you sleep better, you function better. Research is still preliminary but what I try to do to them is, “Listen, this is what you know to be true, Western medicine. This is what your dogma is, right? It’s your proof.”

 

What I tell them is that the stuff that integrative medicine doctors talk about, whether it’s herbal medicine, whether it’s acupuncture, whether it’s even yoga, I consider that part of integrative medicine, it actually shows scientifically that it works. It actually helps you to repair things. It actually helps your heart not to have the number one cause of disease in the Western world, which is having a heart attack. That’s what I give them, I give them the proof that this actually works, and that is the key. It’s not just to say, “Well, I heard my grandma talk about it, and she said this is a good thing.” It’s like showing them the proof.

 

Stacey Holland:Yeah, I actually wish … My grandmother died a few years ago, and I actually wish that I could tell her now, “Ma, you were right, actually.” Because so many years we looked at her and thought, “Euch.” She was always picking herbs out of the garden and giving them to us and, yeah, we thought she was wrong. It would have brought her so much pleasure to have said to her, “Ma, for all these years, you were right.”

 

We’ll be right back with Dr. Nandi after this.

 

Speaker 1:We’re feeling better. We’re feeling better.

 

Stacey Holland:How are you incorporating Eastern medicine into your practice?

 

Dr. Nandi:I gave an example, it was in the morning lecture this morning and I gave an example of what I did with my Hepatitis C patients. When I treated them, sometimes the medicines were worse than the disease. People hated the medicine more than the disease and so I told them, “Talk to your herbalist doctor, acupuncturist and see if we can get some solutions to take away the side effects,” right? It’s a beautiful concert. It’s like you got the strings playing and your horns playing together. You take away one, it doesn’t quite work, and so my other point is that some of the people that are holistic practitioners outright reject Western medicine. That’s not good either, that doesn’t work for me either. Because I think we’ve made some tremendous advances in modern medicine. What I think is that how do we go the rest of the way?

 

For example, there’s a disease called Crohn’s disease that ravages a lot of people. The medicines are great, but they only get about 60 percent, so what else can we do? What else can we do? Is organic living help? Absolutely. Do probiotics help? Absolutely it does. These things that we’ve had for thousands of years now are being taken away. We didn’t have Monsanto a thousand years ago. Didn’t come and take our seeds and engineer them, but now we do. Again, it’s to tell people it’s a beautiful concert of ideas, and one can’t isolate the other because if you do, that’s a recipe for failure.

 

Stacey Holland:I believe the intention once upon a time started out being pure and good. We wanted to feed the world, we wanted to get rid of hunger and somewhere along, it morphed into what it is today. I love the idea that there are those that are joining hands. There are many physicians that are saying, “There’s something that the naturopathic world is on to.”

 

Dr. Nandi:Absolutely.

 

Stacey Holland:They’re staring to incorporate that as well.

 

Dr. Nandi:I think the gut is an incredibly smart organ. All this time, the gut has been just taken for granted, nobody paid attention to it. You just ate and you didn’t know anything more about it. Now the gut is finally getting its respect because now we know that the nervous system within the enteric system, the gut system, is actually even more complex than the central nervous system. Well, think about it, right? As you develop as a child, the first thing you get, and it’s not very clean, is food, and so your immune system has to really be on par.

 

Here’s where the connection actually happens is that once your immune system in the gut sees what is right and what is not, it sends signals to all its little friends throughout the body. “Hey, Bill, this is normal, this is not normal. Hey, Robert, this is …” Guess what? Then they know normalcy. One of the things that we’ve done, it’s called the Hygiene Hypothesis of having autoimmune disease. It’s that we cleanse ourselves so much, especially in the U.S. I don’t know how you guys are in South Africa, but antibacterial soap for everything. Every minute, you’re cleansing yourself. In fact, you’re so clean-

 

Stacey Holland:We have it in all our supermarkets.

 

Dr. Nandi:You do that, right?

 

Stacey Holland:Yeah, yeah.

 

Dr. Nandi:I encourage people to use something called soap and water, imagine that. Soap and water, 20 seconds, right? You do that, and what happens is that, I think, you need to introduce, have your gut introduce some normal stuff that’s been around for thousands of years. It’s almost like if you had your child and stuck him in a closet for 18 years and then released them to the public. I think there’d be some problems, right? They would think everybody’s a monster.

 

The immune system’s the same way. You shelter it to such a degree that when it wakes up at age 18 and you release it to the public, it’s going to go crazy, hence autoimmune disease. It’s a simplistic theory, but there is some truth to it, so absolutely, I believe, I think the gut is an amazing organ. That’s why I believe probiotics are so important. I really, really empower all of you and encourage you not to please ask your doctor for antibiotics when you have a cold. Please.

 

Stacey Holland:Yeah, that’s a good one. Yeah.

 

Dr. Nandi:Because if you have a cold, they say, they go, they come to me and I say, “What’s wrong with you?” “Oh, I need an antibiotic.” I say, “Well, let me ask you, what’s wrong with you?” “No, no. I really need an antibiotic. I’ve been through this, Doc. I know, I know. Let’s just cut to the chase. Let’s save you and me some time.”

 

Stacey Holland:“Give me the antibiotics.”

 

Dr. Nandi:“Thank you so much,” but let’s ask what’s going on … It’s a viral infection, so if it’s a viral infection, you give antibiotics, guess what? You kill those good bugs, and it takes forever to get them back. Then you say, “I don’t understand why I feel bloated all the time.”

 

Stacey Holland:How long does it take to repopulate the gut after you’ve taken a course of antibiotics?

 

Dr. Nandi:It depends on the individual, but it can take weeks, months afterwards. It depends on what your diet is. Some people who have a diet that’s completely processed, they may not recover at all. The thing is that, but then they say to themselves, “Why am I bloated and feel low no energy? I have no idea. Doctor, will you …” We do this thing called copays in America. Do you have copays here? When you have to pay a little bit of money to see your doctor besides insurance.

 

They go, “I want my copay back because I’m still bloated. You’ve got nothing for me.” I say, “Well, have you taken some antibiotics since it started?” “Yeah. What’s that have to do with anything?” I said, “Well, you’ve destroyed your gut flora,” so you’re absolutely right. The immune system of the gut and the nervous system, absolutely critical.

 

Stacey Holland:After the break, our audience has some questions for Dr. Nandi.

 

Speaker 1:We’re feeling better. We’re feeling better.

 

Stacey Holland:I just have a question and it touches, or it links back to what you were talking about in terms of purpose, I think. You can let me know what you think. It’s from [Tusselum Chetty 00:38:52]. She says, “My question is about my aunt. She has starved herself. I feel it’s because she lost her husband 10 years ago. Therefore, she’s extremely thin. All you would feel is her bones on her body. Her immune system is very weak and sensitive and it seems she has a mental health issue because of the tantrums and the stories she makes up in her mind. How can we help her or cure her of these problems?”

 

Dr. Nandi:It’s an important question, because what happens is throughout the world, mental health is really, really undertreated. People say, “Well, how can me having depression lead to my physical health being deprived?” Because the mind-body connection is unbelievably strong. What happens is that if your mind is not functioning properly, every signal it gives is disordered. The one advice I give is you have to find a good psychologist or psychiatrist to help this … It’s her aunt, right?

 

To help her aunt, because once you can give therapy, and that doesn’t mean throwing a pill at them. Far too often, we have people that have real disorders, real disease … I’ll say this. People say, “Well, she’s just crazy” or “He’s just crazy.” I think that’s one of the most over-utilized and pejorative statements, because it’s insulting and it makes people who are depressed not go see the doctor because they feel like they’re judged, that’s there’s nothing, people think there’s nothing wrong with them. I think one of the keys is that understanding she’s got a very serious disorder that leads to death in millions of people throughout the world, and so the number one thing is to treat the depression. Once you treat the depression then what happens is that … I think somebody passed away, right?

 

Stacey Holland:Yeah. Husband, yeah.

 

Dr. Nandi:That insult is so tremendous for her that she cannot cope with it. Just like, for example, if you have a diabetic that is in crisis, you can’t just tell them to get over it and say, “Well, if you just kind of think about it your sugar will get better.” Same with this. She’s in a crisis situation so you have to give them medicine and cognitive therapy. We cannot forget the other techniques of depression and just keep taking a pill that can have side effects. I would say see a psychologist, a psychiatrist if you can find one in your area and really emphasize in addition to medicine, cognitive therapy.

 

Also, I’d say even some of the folks that practice meditation and yoga, huge. Meditation, in one session … I did it with the Detroit Police Department. We took a mobile meditation unit to their precinct in the heart of downtown Detroit, which is stressful, downtown Detroit. Anybody that’s been to Detroit, stressful. These police officers are stressed, we went there. In one session their heart rate and blood pressure went down, in one session, 15 minutes, unbelievable.

 

In addition to all the tools we have in our toolbox of medication and therapy, meditation is huge. Huge because what it does is it centers yourself and your body’s sympathetic response. Remember, forever we were being chased by animals or chasing them, right? That was our history. We either had lunch, and we did not want to be lunch.

 

Stacey Holland:Or we were lunch.

 

Dr. Nandi:That’s what it was, right?

 

Stacey Holland:Yeah.

 

Dr. Nandi:You wanted to have lunch and not be lunch, so that response is still there. When you are not centered, when you don’t have these techniques like meditation, your body is constantly in a cycle of what? Right? Fight or flight.

 

Stacey Holland:Flight, yeah.

 

Dr. Nandi:Those responses actually increases cortisol and in a microscopic level, increase inflammation. Imagine if we could reverse that. Because we no longer, most of us are not being chased by animals, right? Hopefully.

 

Stacey Holland:We hope so, yeah.

 

Dr. Nandi:Exactly. You have the same responses. This woman, in response to her stress, that’s what’s happening to her body, so she’s losing weight, not eating.

 

Stacey Holland:Do any of you have questions? Especially regarding meditation or the mental … There we go. Yeshantha, Dr. Yashantha’s one of our homeopaths, our regular homeopaths on the show.

 

Dr. Nandi:Excellent.

 

Dr. Yashantha:Hi, nice to meet you.

 

Dr. Nandi:It’s my pleasure.

 

Dr. Yashantha:I wanted to ask, how do you incorporate a spiritual mindset into your patients? Because we live in a world where there’s a lot of stigma attached to being spiritual because I think in South Africa, people are very closed minded. When you say the word “spiritual,” it’s like, “No. This religion or that religion, I don’t do this.” How do you incorporate it in such a general way that everyone gets the concept?

 

Dr. Nandi:It’s an epidemic. It’s not just South Africa, it’s the whole world. Whether I go to Dubai, whether I go to Mumbai, whether I go to any country in the world, it’s the same story.

 

Stacey Holland:Only because it’s so personal as well. People feel it’s so personal.

 

Dr. Nandi:It is, but it seems like it’s not fashionable [crosstalk 00:43:22] to believe in anything. You got to believe in nothing to be cool. You got to be Justin Bieber, right? Bieber believes in nothing, right? Bieber fever, so you got to be Justin Bieber. You have to urinate on objects that are holy to people, right? That’s how you’re cool. What happens is that people have a negative … Once you say you’re spiritual they go, “Oh boy, here it goes. Do, do, do, do. Do, do do. He’s talking but no words are coming out of his mouth. He’s going to sit cross-legged and start chanting. I’m running away,” right?

 

Stacey Holland:Yeah.

 

Dr. Nandi:Or they think, “The big R,” religion. We’ve had many religious leaders let us down. Whether it be the Catholic church, the Hindu religion, the Muslim religion, everywhere, so people are afraid of it. What I tell them is that spirituality can be you going in the garden and planting, so you know that there’s something besides yourself. At a very young age I was told that, “You know what? It’s not just about you. There’s a community that’s bigger than you, there’s a country that’s bigger than you, there’s a planet that’s bigger than you, and a whole cosmos, and a spirit that’s bigger than you.”

 

I was told at a young age, so I was lucky. What I try to tell them is that spirituality doesn’t have to be religious. It doesn’t have to be yoga “Ohm.” It doesn’t have to be any of that. It can just be what you think is important that makes you feel part of the planet. It could be as just simple as going out into the beach and watching the waves come in. Because guess what that does? It helps you pause, it helps you reflect and understand what’s going on. That will improve your health. That’s what I tell them.

 

I mean, you got this guy who watches baseball games and chops wood. I’m not going to tell him to do something that I would do, maybe a woman who already does yoga, so I try to make it personal, but I let them know it’s not religion and it’s not voodoo, and that, “Guess what? You may have to take one less pill if you do it.” That’s what the motivation is. They got their bag of pills, a walking pharmaceutical factory.

 

I tell them, “Guess what? You can take a couple less pills if you do it.” Okay, now you’re interested. Or you tell the athlete that, the teenager that wants to be the best footballer or the best … “If you do the mindfulness meditation, guess what? You may be able to throw like …” We got a guy named, older guy named Brett Favre. “You’ll be able to throw like Brett Favre.” Or whatever, cricket, you get the idea. You let them know, and I tell them sports teams do that now, professional sports teams hire people to be spiritual. There’s a guy named Michael Jordan. You’ve heard of him?

 

Stacey Holland:Yes.

 

Dr. Nandi:He won a few championships.

 

Stacey Holland:Just a few.

 

Dr. Nandi:Did a couple things. He had a coach, Coach Phil taught them meditation and yoga and spirituality. Told Michael, “You have to score six less points a game.” Michael said, “What are you talking about? Six less points a game, that ain’t happening, Coach. I’m done.” Over time, with spirituality, he realizes in order for him to succeed, he had to go beyond himself and think about his community, his team.

 

Stacey Holland:How often do you meditate?

 

Dr. Nandi:Every day. I try to do it [crosstalk 00:46:27] once an hour. I even, for example, I’m seeing patients all day. I’ll just, all I do is, it’s not something miraculous. I sit in my chair, I close my eyes. I just sit for 60 seconds and I’m back at it.

 

Stacey Holland:Yeah.

 

Dr. Nandi:Even that is enough but I mean, obviously, if you can do it for an hour it’s better, but most of us don’t have that time. If you do, that’s great. Even if you do it for a few minutes. It’s just stopping and breathing and reflecting and saying this is what’s going on. I even, for my goals, I actually have it written down, I look at it every … I have short-term goals I look at every day. I write it down so I don’t forget it. Then I have long-term goals that I look at weekly. If I don’t have goals, if you don’t have goals, you don’t know what to try to achieve.

 

Any good athlete, any person who’s successful will tell you they have goals and they try to follow it. Then they have a sheet that says what their progress is. I write, I’m writing, whenever I’m not working. On the plane, I was writing my book, so I have a goal for that. Like I want to be able to finish this in a certain period of time. Why? Because I want to get this kind of information to people who don’t have television, who like to read print. I try to meditate as much as I can. Like I told you, my mom taught me at a very young age to just stop.

 

Stacey Holland:It’s something that’s been instilled, yeah.

 

Dr. Nandi:She didn’t say, “This is meditation.” She said, “Just stop and do nothing for a little while.”

 

Stacey Holland:Yeah. Well, Dr. Nandi, since we’re talking about meditation and spirituality, you can end off for us with a beautiful namaste.

 

Dr. Nandi:Yeah, and I always end my shows namaste. Many of you may know what it is, but I define it for people who don’t, which is that, “The light in me honors the light in you,” so namaste to you. Thank you for helping me, and thank you for joining us. I appreciate it.

 

Speaker 1:I’m Feeling better now. I’m feeling better. I’m feeling better. Feeling … (singing) I’m feeling better.

 

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Speaker 1:(singing) This week in the second of our two special episodes of Real Health with Doctor Nandi, we’re going to be talking gut health, nutrition, and how to live a life of purpose. We’ll be joined by Doctors Sine Dlamini, Nicci Robertson, and Nicole Allen. We’ll also be taking some questions from our audience.

 

Stacey Holland:So Doctor Nandi, a few years ago I discovered the importance of gut health. I often refer to it as I sort of followed this, it seemed like a wild goose chase at that point in time, but it was such a profound discovery because it made sense of my entire life actually, from birth. From a baby I struggled with oral thrush, with eczema, with mood swings, which got worse as I got older as well. When I was finally able to link it all to the state of my gut, it’s amazing. I often refer to it as a monkey being lifted, a weight being lifted off my back because finally I knew where the cause or the source of the problem was. Before we get into all the questions and we’ll come around gut health, why did you choose to specialize in gastroenterology?

 

Partha Nandi:‘Cause I’m smart.

 

Stacey Holland:Because you’re dealing with the seat of people’s emotions.

 

Partha Nandi:Because I like the smartest organ, that’s why. But in all serious, I love the field where you could do medicine as well as surgery. Way back when I was a student because I love the fact that, I think it was in the US the first seven complaints are gastrointestinal, so if you look at that. So I love the fact that you could help a lot of people, but I like to do things. I wanted to be able to fix somebody who was bleeding from their intestines from a bleeding ulcer. I mean it’s such a privilege that, you’re seeing this on endoscopy, you’re seeing the artery pouring out and be able to stop it and literally you can save a life. So I love that part of it, that you could have a procedure that helps. At the same time, I could be a hepatologist and talk to someone about how to help with their liver disease. I like the nice combination of it.

 

As I learned more about the field I realized how intricate, I knew about the symptoms, but how intricate the gut was to the rest of the body. The reality is that we’re all connected, all the organs are connected. The kidney, if your kidneys are not doing well, your whole entire body doesn’t do well. If your heart’s not doing well it’s not just, “Oh, my heart’s doing poorly. The rest of my body’s okay.” It’s the fact that we’re all connected.

 

The gut’s especially important because it’s such an organ that gets insulted at such a young age. Like you talked about, if you eat crap when you’re young then what happens is that you get crap all over your body. It’s unexplainable. People say, “Oh, I don’t get it.” The people that are feeding you often have limited knowledge of what they’re doing. So they just keep doing what’s been told to them and for some people they get away with it but for you they couldn’t. What I love about that is that you can make changes. It’s not just about knowing it and then sitting back saying, “Oh, I hope I do okay.” It’s you can make changes in your diet that can actually lead to changes relatively rapidly. Including probiotics, including what you put in your body.

 

One of the authors that I really like is Doctor Hyman. He’s written a book, I don’t know if you’ve heard of him in South Africa but in the US we have. He says the most important tool in fixing your health is your fork. If you take your fork and put it in the wrong thing, big problems. You put it in the right things, it’s a great help. So gut health, and gut immune system, and the gut nervous system. I treat diseases like Irritable Bowel Syndrome. So what happens is far too often doctors say, “You’ve got IBS, you must be crazy.” Doctors say this because they cannot pinpoint the reason.

 

What they don’t understand is that the gut’s nervous system is so intricate that when you see people that have Irritable Bowel Syndrome and do PET scans and functional scans in their brain, they light up like a Christmas tree compared to people who don’t. That means that there’s signals being sent from your gut, objectively, this is not just people talking and postulating. It’s evidence. I love that because then you can say this is what’s happened, this is why your gut is so important. I think there’s tremendous research now talk about the gut immune system, the gut nervous system, and how it actually incorporates with the rest of your body. It’s amazing.

 

Stacey Holland:Nicki, when you see people is this where you start?

 

Nicci Robertson:Absolutely. You know if people come to us looking for weight loss or migraines or just wanting to get in shape or if they’re depressed, the first place you start is with the gut. Typically, a person will come in and we do a thorough assessment. You ask the question, “How’s your digestion?” They go, “Oh, I get bloated.” They didn’t think that, no one puts that back to this is where it all started. Just about everybody’s got some kind of gut issue. That is where we start 100% of the time and we get 100% results.

 

The problem is now it’s become quite mainstream and people realize they should take a probiotic and they go off to a chain store and they get a probiotic and it doesn’t work because it’s not specific to them. So there are protocols and there are ways to get down to the nitty gritty but you’ve got to know what you’re dealing with as well ’cause the gut is so complex. It’s not just a case of taking too many probiotics. There’s so much that goes on with gut health. I think our gut is a reflection of the environment. It’s almost like a hologram. It’s like a fingerprint of what’s going on out there is reflecting in here. We throw the word around, “gut instinct.” Anybody who’s had anxiety is going to have a gut issue because the neurotransmitters are made in the gut. We don’t realize the length and breadth of how far, I mean we’re just scraping the surface.

 

Just, if you can do anything is look after what’s going in, what are you putting down your throat that is becoming you, that is translating into inflammation in that gut. You will eradicate most, most, not all, most disease. If you’re looking at autoimmune you start with the gut. If you’re looking at hormone problems you start with the gut. Insulin, it comes down to what’s going on with the bacteria in your system. There’s possibly more bacteria in your gut than we have cells in our body. So it’s complex but it is fundamentally the place to start.

 

Stacey Holland:So now I think what we were seeing before is that we were previously told you’ve got to learn to manage something, you’ve got to learn to just deal with it. Now finally, our understanding of gut health, we can actually see that certain things can be cured. It’s not just a case of managing it anymore, especially when it comes to autoimmune conditions. Is that the type of mindset that you have with your patients, especially as being a general practitioner?

 

Sine Dlamini:Yes, you know, being a general practitioner, and I’m just going to touch on what Doctor Nandi said, especially with IBS is that people will come to you and they’ll be suffering with this condition. They’ve been told before that they’re gonna be fine. “Oh you’re gonna be fine. Just take this, you’ll be alright. Just take that, you’ll be alright. Take this. Eat that. Eat this.” But they’re never really actually taught that the problem starts from the gut. That if you don’t fix your gut, if you don’t repair it, if you don’t remove what is the insult, if you don’t replace what needs to be replaced, then the problem will just keep continuing.

 

Then you get conditions like leaky gut which actually can lead to autoimmune disorders because when you have a leaky gut it basically means that the lining of your digestive tract has been compromised. What that happens it will not absorb food properly as it should, but also, because it is leaky between the spaces of the cells, you might get some intruders coming in there that shouldn’t be. Then they land up in your blood system, which then can trigger, as you were saying, it can trigger a lot of problems within the rest of the body, especially within the immune system. So with a lot of diseases, not just your autoimmune or diseases of immunity but also, as we touched on, diseases of the nervous system, everything really does stem back to the gut. If your gut is healthy then the rest of you will be healthy.

 

Stacey Holland:Your body will be healthy. When it comes to leaky gut, a lot of people have asked where do you even start because there’s the GAPS Protocol which is extremely difficult to follow because you’re warming up your food on a stove. You can’t warm it up in a microwave, for example. There’s the SED Protocol. How are you taking patients through that healing system, specifically for leaky guy? I’m gonna give it to you, Doctor Nandi.

 

Partha Nandi:So here’s the thing. I’ll tell you it’s not mainstream that everybody believes that Leaky Gut Syndrome is a problem. Remember, the idea is the difference between what’s in your poop, is that what we call it here in South Africa? Poop?

 

Stacey Holland:Yeah. We get that.

 

Partha Nandi:Poop versus blood is one cell thick. So the idea if that if you’ve got these tight junctions that are supposed to be, basically you’ve got every law enforcement agency at those junctions to stop people from coming through. If there’s even a slight space there then you could have a problem. Well, it’s difficult to prove that there is a space there that’s causing the inflammation. There’s putative mechanisms, meaning that there’s preliminary research shows that but people will disagree left and right. So what I tell them is this, I think that it goes back to not having these really difficult systems to follow but rather, we talked about probiotics, but I like natural probiotics too. I like them to eat yogurt. I like them to eat sauerkraut. I like kimchi. Be able to get the foods that we normally have in our system. I think when you do that then what happens is as a result then these problems that you have with your immune system correct themselves. I don’t believe in getting these systems where people cannot even follow it or have difficulties following it to repair it.

 

I think if you go back to doing a couple of thing. Number one is changing your diet, changing your diet to have foods that are whole foods that are not processed. Foods that have probiotics in them, along with doing something else that’s revolutionary, getting rest. Getting rest that repairs your body, getting sleep and stopping. That will help you. That will help you to repair it.

 

The other thing I want to say is that I do believe the gut’s important. I don’t want people to come away with the feeling that this will solve everything. Because people come and tell me, “I have this problem and I heard that my gut health, if I change that it will change everything.” I think that’s part of the solution. Absolutely everything you’ve said is true. But it has to be coupled with other things. You have to also exercise. You also have to be able to say, “This is what I do with a purpose-driven life.” It can’t happen in isolation. And you can’t just take care of your gut and not take care of your heart. You can’t take care of your gut and also not take care of your brain. I mean you have to do it all. So the gut is just as important as your kidneys are.

 

Stacey Holland:Don’t you believe it starts there though?

 

Partha Nandi:It does but it doesn’t end there. So it is the inciting process but most of us are not two anymore. So lots has happened. So it’s almost like saying well, the initial event in the intruder coming is breaking down the door. Well, if you fix the door you can’t fix the damage that’s done in your house already. So you have to fix the door, clearly, but you also have to take care of the damage that’s been there in all the other organs. That is an integrative approach with not just saying that I’m going to go to a gut specialist and solve everything. It will definitely help but you’ve got to follow through with everything else otherwise you will have a solution that’s transient and will not follow.

 

It’s like the diets we talked about. Diets will give you the solution for a while but it won’t solve everything. So I agree with both of what’s been said but I also think that we have to do more and we can’t just count on one thing. There will be people who talk about, “You know what? If you do this cleansing system for your liver you’ll be fine.” There are people who purport that. They have evidence to show that. I tell them listen, do that, but also do others. I want to make sure that’s importantly said as well.

 

The other thing is that we have to understand that food allergies may play a huge role in this. I would say that if people feel like there are foods that they can’t eat, see an allergist. Get tested so we know what foods. Don’t just say, “Well my aunt something said this food is bad for you.” Find out. There are certain foods that people can’t tolerate. That’s also an important part of this because there are certain foods that we’ve eaten for generations that we can’t tolerate. The most common one that people understand is gluten, for example. If you’re somebody who is gluten-intolerant, not having Celiac disease, there’s a difference. But even having gluten intolerance-

 

Stacey Holland:Just highlight the difference for us for those of us that don’t know.

 

Partha Nandi:Yeah, so Celiac disease is a disease where this substance called gluten, which is normally taken by people, in some people the body thinks it’s actually a foreign substance like a bacteria so it attacks it. Well there’s nothing to attack so it damages your body, damages the intestine to the point where it damages the lining where it can no longer absorb food. It can be that extreme. Then when food goes into your colon, your large intestine, the nice bacteria eat it up, produce bloating, diarrhea. It can cause a multitude of problems. That’s the disease.

 

However, people can be gluten intolerant or gluten sensitive. That means that you may not have the disease. When I, as a gastroenterologist, go in and take biopsies it may be negative but you may actually be sensitive, have reactions to that gluten and then be intolerant. That also is important. I think the key, what I’m trying to say is that see an allergist if you can. Get tested so you make sure that the damage that she’s talking about is being done. So you know what foods, we know in general to avoid processed foods but there are specific foods to avoid. That’s also important to know.

 

Sine Dlamini:What is amazing, without even having to go have you to get tested for allergies, it is amazing how people ignore their own bodies. They ignore the, we’re talking about bloating, I think recently. People will come to you and they say, “Well you know, after I eat bread or every time I have a sandwich with cheese on it or everything time I have this and that I feel bad or I get diarrhea and they’ll continue-”

 

Partha Nandi:Stop eating cheese!

 

Sine Dlamini:To eat cheese sandwiches. [crosstalk 00:14:55] They start owning the symptoms though. People say, “When I have that this happens to me.” They’ll be indulging in it.

 

Partha Nandi:Every time I hit my hand with a hammer it hurts.

 

Sine Dlamini:Yeah. Exactly.

 

Stacey Holland:Well this is the thing though is I was gonna ask Nicci if we’ve become, we’ve sort of normalized-

 

Sine Dlamini:Owning issues.

 

Stacey Holland:The abnormal.

 

Nicci Robertson:And yeah, you’ll eat cheese because you can’t think of an alternative.

 

Partha Nandi:You love cheese.

 

Stacey Holland:Yeah you just love cheese. It’s addictive, actually.

 

Nicci Robertson:And we do get addicted to the things that don’t serve us because allergens do that. But it’s also a case of, one reason why people don’t make nutritional changes is because firstly, they don’t plan and prepare. So they don’t know how to do that. So it’s a bit of an education. How to actually work up what you’re gonna eat and then pack those little containers and what you’re gonna put in them. There’s an education component there. Then, what should I be eating? That’s another education component. So what’s the alternative? If you haven’t explored the alternatives or sat down with somebody who said, “Well try this,” it won’t occur to you.

 

So you don’t eat, you don’t plan, you’re starving hungry. There’s some cheese. Okay, I’ll just eat it today. But it’s fine because then I’ll just take this pill and it’ll get rid of the symptoms and I’ll continue until something really goes wrong. Then you start looking. But also, as human beings I think we come in to go to the doctor or go to a nutritionist and go, “I want to lose weight,” and don’t look at the whole picture of your stress levels, the fact that you’re not training, the fact that you’re not sleeping. Not sleeping is the most, single most fattening thing you can do because you’re gonna be playing catch-up the whole day trying to stay awake. So yeah, that whole body, that whole life system is the most important thing you can do.

 

Stacey Holland:So don’t go away because when we come back the discussion continues with our panel and Dr. Nandi … Thanks again for joining us on Real Health. It’s a special edition of Real Health. We have Doctor Nandi with us in studio. Doctor Nandi, what do you think is the underlying cause of disease? Is it a lack of oxygen on a cellular level? Is it chronic inflammation? Because it seems like we’re in search of that holy grail of medicine. We’re looking for the one thing that we can say, “Okay, fine, this is where I know disease emanates from.” I know it’s a very simplistic question to ask-

 

Partha Nandi:No, it’s a very complex question. [crosstalk 00:17:42] It’s an extremely complex question.

 

Stacey Holland:I’d love to hear, it sounds like we’re looking at one answer. That’s the reason why I say it seems like it’s simplistic but I know it is quite complex. But what are your thoughts around that?

 

Partha Nandi:I think genetically you’re predisposed. So first thing is that you’re born with certain tendencies. So I was born with a tendency for high blood pressure. So I have it. So you are born with certain tendencies and then the environment that you have, the food that you eat, that air that you breathe, the chemicals that you ingest voluntarily.

 

Stacey Holland:Voluntarily.

 

Partha Nandi:Voluntarily. It’s not, nobody’s forcing you. So you eat those things and you get those insults. So it’s almost like you’re set up. You’re set up. It’s like a one-two punch in boxing. So you’re set up, the boxer sets you up with the body, that’s your genetics. Then bam, comes to the face, another one goes to your left hook, and you come down. So the key is that you’re not gonna be able to change your genetics yet. We’re starting to get there but you can’t change your genetics. So find out as much as you can about your family’s history and your natural history. Secondly, then, do everything you can to reduce that risk. On a microscopic level, inflammation is the key. The inflammation is the key. What you said was absolutely right but it’s a combination of both. When you lack oxygen you cause inflammation. But that’s not the only cause of inflammation. There are multitudes of cause. Even having that fight or flight will be able to increase the amount of cortisol, increase the stress hormones that also cause inflammation.

 

So to me, it’s a combination of your genetic predisposition. No matter what you do your cholesterol is 500 in some people. So they’re gonna have more risk of heart disease. For them, they have to do everything to reduce their risk of heart disease. Others will have risk of liver disease or gut disease, history of Crohn’s disease, history of Celiac disease. To me it’s a combination of that. But we can control our environment and we’re not doing it. She’s absolutely right. You know what, we know we can’t eat that cheese and she’s absolutely right, but we won’t go to the step of going to our fridge and walking there and making the conscious decision of opening it and actually looking behind the milk carton to see what’s behind there so we can find something to eat.

 

It’s just pure, we’ve been trained to be lazy. We’ve been trained to have creature comforts and making everything convenient. It’s the fast food of life. It’s the drive-through. You guys have drive-throughs, right? It’s the drive-through of life. You go through, you don’t even have to get out of your car. Pretty soon you can go in a bathroom in your car. You don’t have to get out to even do that. So it’s becoming so portable that you can’t even get out of your couch to go to the fridge because there’s a piece of cheese right there. I’ll be okay. You’re right. Because I have an anti-bloating medicine in my left hand. So why walk? That’s the problem.

 

Stacey Holland:Do we have any questions yet guys? Thank you. Yes.

 

Audience:Good morning everyone. My question is what is the role of antioxidants play in relation to having a healthy gut? If you could maybe elaborate on that?

 

Stacey Holland:Thanks for that good question.

 

Partha Nandi:Yeah, that’s a great question. So I think it’s reparative, reparative mechanism. You can add antioxidants. The most revolutionary antioxidants I know of is a vegetable. So people think, “I need to take a pill made by Bula Bula Pharmaceutical. I put it in my mouth and it will solve everything.” But one of the best antioxidants are foods. For example, one of my favorite foods are blueberries. Packed with antioxidants, taste delicious. I put it in this thing called a smoothie.

 

Stacey Holland:Pomegranates.

 

Partha Nandi:yeah. It’s revolutionary. It’s like I use this revolutionary probiotic called yogurt and this revolutionary antioxidant called blueberries and then eat it with a revolutionary spinach and a revolutionary antioxidant called kale. My goal is that those antioxidants can be part of your diet in the supermarket. I would rather you do that than go find a pill made by somebody because, I’m not saying you shouldn’t if it doesn’t work, but the first step should be what can we incorporate into your diet. Maybe you hate blueberries but there will be something you like in the fruit family, in the vegetable family. With my sons every night I make a smoothie. So I trained them at a young age to love this stuff and know it, not to be foreign, but to be something that’s part of their life. That’s what I would say about antioxidants.

 

I think it’s critical in healing, not just the gut, but the entire body. Studies show Alzheimer’s disease, you can reduce it by doing something revolutionary, by eating vegetables. Like Popeye eats his spinach and he gets powerful, well you can do that as human beings as well. So not just that but autoimmune disease, diseases of kidneys and liver, everything. Because at the end of the day your body can only heal so much without some help. You gotta do something she talked about, that I talked about, and you talked about is sleeping. Another revolutionary idea is that you gotta sleep. You gotta close your eyes and actually not do something for a while. If you sleep, take some vegetables in every meal and fruits in every meal.

 

Stacey Holland:Organic vegetables as far as possible.

 

Partha Nandi:Yeah, if you can afford it. Listen. Here’s the thing I tell people is that if you can afford organic vegetables, all day long, please do it. But if you can’t, I’d rather have you ate vegetables than no vegetables at all. My rule is-

 

Stacey Holland:[inaudible 00:22:50]

 

Partha Nandi:The thicker the skin the less the importance of organic. So we have watermelons that have skin, not as worried about it. Blueberries, more worried about it. Grapes, more worried about it. Apples, more worried about it. Thin skin, pesticides get right on it. You’re right where the action is. When you have a nice thick coat like with an orange, less worried about it. Ideal world, if we all had organic foods all the time, absolutely. But certain people can’t afford it. It’s just the reality. Where I live, an organic milk is literally three times the price of regular milk. I do it because I can but people cannot. That’s my long answer to your short question.

 

Stacey Holland:Okay. We had one more question.

 

Audience:I’m gluten intolerant. Before I knew that I went to the doctors and I couldn’t receive help until I got help from a homeopather. They told me to stop all the foods that contain gluten. I wanted answers and I went for the biopsy and I was treated. I tried eating accordingly. But I know that there are things that trigger so I need assistance in that.

 

Partha Nandi:So there are two separate problems. So the stomach ulcers are not caused by the gluten. Stomach ulcers are caused by mainly two things is acid or a bacteria called H. Pylori. It’s a bacteria that can infect your gut and the resultant infection can cause an ulcer. There other things medicines, there are certain medicines. I don’t know if you have ibuprofen, if it’s called Brufen, there’s lots of names around the world. But that will also cause ulcers. Also aspirin will cause ulcers.

 

Sine Dlamini:Asprin, yes, very common.

 

Partha Nandi:So two problems. You have two problems. One is the ulcer. The ulcer, when you do the biopsies they look for a bacteria called Helicobacter or H. Pylori. Once you treat that, in most cases, the ulcer doesn’t come back. In countries like South Africa you can have up to 90% of ulcers can be caused by that. So your doctor should look for that. Secondly is that you have to make sure that you don’t take those medicines. For the gluten, if you avoid the gluten and you don’t have the disease, really your body will repair itself because no longer, it’s almost like you’re having the military attack your body every single day. Once you take away the military, which is the gluten, no more attacks, your body repairs itself. Obviously you have fruits and vegetables as much as you can. Have if you can have yogurt, if you can have sauerkraut, your normal probiotics. I don’t know how much kimchi is available in country but kimchi is another one that’s really a good source. [crosstalk 00:25:28] But that’s all you really need.

 

Stacey Holland:You can make your own actually, that’s the best.

 

Partha Nandi:Oh yeah. Just make sure you have your windows open ’cause it will smell up your house for a long time. But it’s worth it.

 

Stacey Holland:You’re speaking from experience, Doctor Nandi.

 

Partha Nandi:Oh yeah.

 

Stacey Holland:So now before we let you go, just to, I think, add to what I think you’re asking. With the GAPS Protocol, Doctor McBride recommends being off these foods that trigger for a period of two years, up to two years, and then start to introduce those sort of your glutens. She gives a staged approach so she recommends starting off with sourdough breads. She says she doesn’t think that most people would ever want to include gluten into their diets ever again after that.

 

Sine Dlamini:Ever again, exactly.

 

Stacey Holland:But how long should you be off those because that’s a difficult thing for people. They say, “Well I’ve been off it for six months. I don’t know whether my gut has been healed or not.”

 

Sine Dlamini:That’s the thing, we’re not all the same. So some people may be off it for six months and when they reintroduce it doesn’t affect them as much. Some people may be off it for two years and when they do reintroduce they’ll be right back where they started. So I mean the key thing is probably just take it in limited quantities up until your body tells you whether it can withstand having that onslaught back again. As he said, you’ll have an army and then you eradicate it and then you kind of bring that army back. But before you bring that army back you have to make sure that you arm yourself.

 

Stacey Holland:Your forces are strong enough.

 

Sine Dlamini:Yes, your forces are strong enough. As we go back to that, the foods you eat, and I always say let food be your medicine. As he says, let food be your medicine and medicine be your food.

 

Partha Nandi:Hippocrates, right?

 

Sine Dlamini:Yeah. Exactly, exactly.

 

Stacey Holland:Yes, please.

 

Nicci Robertson:A little bit of poison is still poison. So if you’ve got a sensitivity to something there are so many alternatives nowadays. Well you don’t have to eat gluten but you can still enjoy your food and you can have, not miss it if you know what you’re doing. So I don’t really think, I mean, it depends on the severity.

 

Partha Nandi:If you have the disease you avoid it completely. If you have intolerance, sensitivity you can cheat a little bit. You can cheat a little bit and have a normal life.

 

Stacey Holland:All right. Don’t go away because when we come back Nicole Allen, our holistic health coach, also joins us … While Nicole is joining us I’m gonna ask you another question that came through from Roger. He asked, “Do you believe that aging is actually a disease?”

 

Partha Nandi:I think the answer to that is life is a fatal disease. So unfortunately, no matter what you do, something’s gonna get you. Your best goal is that, I think it’s a nice question to ask what can you do to optimize your health. There are certain culture that people live way over 100 and they live well. Let’s look at the feature that they have. It’s not very dramatic. They eat not very much, they move, and they have family and spirituality. That’s the commonality. That’s how simple it is. Now, we can get into the nitty gritty and talk about what’s happening on a cellular level. But the problem is that it’s difficult to go and, we don’t have nanotechnology which means that it’s technology that’s so tiny that you go in your cells and you can inject it. We can’t live forever yet. But what you can do is try to take away and minimize your tendencies as much as possible.

 

So like I said, for me, controlling my high blood pressure is an important thing. My grandfather died at age 47 of a heart attack so I know what, knowledge is really important. Ask your family what things run in your family genetically so you know what you’re disposed, and then, obviously, do everything you can to prevent it. I don’t think aging is a disease. I think every organism in the planet has a certain lifespan and you can’t live forever. Your best goal is to optimize that body, that engine, by giving it good stuff, making it work enough but not overdoing it.

 

I mean I think the people who run these ultra marathons, the people who do the Crossfit crazy, lifting chairs and tires and throwing it across the room. [crosstalk 00:29:54] Until you could have rhabdomyolysis. What that means in English is that your darn muscles have broken down and causing kidney failure. That doesn’t sound right. It doesn’t sound like a healthy thing to do. Now, if it works for you it’s great. The idea is that, I think that aging is not a disease, it’s a part of life. What you try to do is optimize that so you can live the best life you can.

 

Stacey Holland:I think also part of it would be changing your mindset, one’s mindset. You’re gonna come back to this over and over. So Nic, I’m gonna bring you in here because I completely agree with Doctor Nandi but on the other end of the spectrum you have people that will say well, they sort of resign themselves to the fact that this is what happens to my body because I’m aging, I’m getting older. You can see people that live well, beautiful, long lives. They look amazing. They look 20 years younger than their chronological age. It’s a mindset change at the end of the day.

 

Nicole Allen:100%. There’s that saying what the mind believes the body perceives. Like Doctor Nandi said earlier, the mind-body connection is so strong. It’s a huge mistake to ignore it, to assume. The mind is so powerful. The subconscious mind is so powerful. We send messages to our body everyday, often without even being aware of it. But the things we tell ourselves, our fundamental beliefs, “I can’t do that, it’s too hard,” or “I don’t really wanna walk around the block, I’m too tired,” all of this. If you say it, your body believes it. It becomes true. It becomes your reality. So a lot of, you touched on countries where you have really healthy people living to over 100. A lot of what they have is a positive mindset. It’s just, “Of course I can get up today,” “Of course I can do my gardening or make a meal or do some gentle exercise.”

 

I think we put so much pressure on ourselves. We’ve spoken about this before, people have such an all or nothing attitude. It’s like you either go for it 100% or it’s actually not worth doing. But small changes matter. Small steps get you to your goal. The advantage of small changes is you can sustain small changes. When we try to go big or go home the failure is so much greater when you can’t get there.

 

Stacey Holland:It’s devastating.

 

Nicole Allen:It’s devastating and it puts you off trying again. But if you just make small lifestyle changes each day, if you just think to yourself, if you tell yourself you can do it, “I can just get off the couch for five minutes.” Then tomorrow it’ll be six minutes or seven, or eight, or nine, or 10. You gradually make changes, positive changes. You will see great results without setting yourself back so many times.

 

Stacey Holland:It’s about starting somewhere at the end of the day.

 

Nicole Allen:Absolutely.

 

Stacey Holland:Doctor Nandi and Nicci, I want to touch on a question that I actually thought about just now ’cause it came through, you mentioned running. From [inaudible 00:33:00] actually. She says, “Are there any dangers associated with running, especially when a person does several marathons and ultra marathons during the year? A typical example would be training for Conrad’s, a 90 kilometer ultra marathon. It’s training involves running between 60 and 150 kilometers per week for a period of about six month, which includes running several 42 kilometers, 50 kilometers, and 60 kilometer races, usually-”

 

Partha Nandi:Several.

 

Stacey Holland:… “a week apart.”

 

Partha Nandi:So you start to wonder what the goal is. So it goes back to your purpose-driven life. What is your purpose? Is your purpose to be an Olympic athlete or is your purpose to be a healthy person? If it works for you to do that you have to really be careful. You have to be hydrated, optimal nutrition, I mean calorie intakes much higher than what’s recommended, foods that are reparative much higher than what we’d recommend. But I just, I think for the average person it’s just not healthy because-

 

Stacey Holland:It’s a bucket list item, right? I don’t know how many of you have Conrad’s Marathon on your, okay not many. Okay. Clearly not.

 

Partha Nandi:But seriously, several in a week. I mean.

 

Stacey Holland:I think what she’s saying is that’s what it takes in order to prepare for Conrad’s Marathon.

 

Partha Nandi:It is but if you do these ultra exercises I think, listen, I think it can work for individuals but I think as a generalization, I mean for people who are being healthy you have to look at your body and say what do you want? Do you want a healthy body or do you want something that is ultra fit and ultra, and that’s a whole different conversation. You need to have a group of people that assist you in making sure that happens. You need help to make sure that your body doesn’t go down because you could have a number of health conditions starting from rhabdomyolysis, to kidney failure, to injuries all over your body. You have to make sure that you’re ready for it. People just think, “Oh, I’m in good shape. I feel good,” and they jump on it. You wouldn’t believe how many people come to our emergency rooms because of those injuries.

 

I’ll go back to one other point that we made is the business of fear. Fear is a huge factor. I tell my kids, imagine not failing and what you could accomplish if you didn’t fail. This is what she touched on is that instead of saying, “I’m afraid that when I come out and speak that I’ll say something stupid,” imagine that you’ll say something smart. Imagine that when you come out you actually look good or that somebody doesn’t care if you look fat or thin. It’s the business of fear. Fear has been ingrained in our humanity because that’s what’s kept us alive. I like her. Can I take her back home?

 

Stacey Holland:[inaudible 00:35:39]

 

Partha Nandi:Oh yeah. This is what it’s all about.

 

Stacey Holland:Don’t go away because when we come back the discussion continues with our panel and Doctor Nandi … Then on the other end of the spectrum you say well you should live a life of balance, you should live a life where you find what works for you. That seems like it’s easier said that done. You know, we have a panel discussion with three experts here and we ask you questions. At the end of the day you say diet is not good, it’s a lifestyle that you need to find, you need to find the balance. But the truth is how? How do you, I mean it almost sounds like I’m at a loss for words here but does balance actually exist nowadays? Isn’t a balance for me a completely different-

 

Nicole Allen:80/20.

 

Partha Nandi:Well you have to have a purpose though. This is a thing, we’re walking on aimlessly. We’re in Johannesburg traffic driving to nowhere and if you do that nothing works. I promise you, if you think that you have no idea where you’re gonna go, you will definitely go nowhere. That’s what’s happening. People have no purpose. It’s fundamentally, you have to go way back. Our children and not being taught that there’s a purpose to what they’re doing. They’re wandering around aimlessly. I don’t want to pick on the phone but that’s currently the victim of choice. That phone is taking away our communication skills. It’s taking away all that we’ve done in humanity.

 

Stacey Holland:Our interpersonal skills, yes.

 

Partha Nandi:Interpersonal skills, movement, diet, everything. It’s taken over and it’s not accidental. It’s happening. It’s being pushed in every direction because people can make money from this device. So what’s happening it’s being pushed. I would take a step back and say, you’re saying, “Well it’s not that easy, Doc.” I would say it is that easy. Here’s what we have to do as parents is that we have to start at a young age and say this is what I’m doing. What you’re doing in your life, you clearly are doing things that are right. If you have children or if you don’t, when you have them, teach them at a young age and say, “This is what’s important.” Once you get that, once you know what your destination is, things follow. Otherwise it will never follow.

 

If you don’t have a purpose of why you’re doing something it will never work. If you just go to school and you’re being forced to, will you do well? Hardly ever. But if you have a goal of why you’re going to school you will study with intent and you’ll ace every exam. Most of my students, and my patients that are adult students, “You know I wish I knew this when I was a kid because it motivates.” I would say take a step back and find your purpose. You have to do some soul-searching. When it’s not working for you there’s a reason. It’s because you don’t have a fundamental purpose. We have relationships that are caustic. We have lack of any communications and we’ve lost our family unit. That is where it starts. If we don’t have that, everything else will fail.

 

You have a physician talking about that. It’s not just about a prescription but we have to look at our society and say, “What can I do?” It is true, it starts with me. There’s all these cliches, “It starts with me.” You know the famous Michael Jackson song that I adore it’s Looking at the Man in the Mirror. Listen, f you don’t like you’re doing and you look at the mirror and then ignoring that and saying, “I don’t know what to do,” I mean it just doesn’t work.

 

I was talking to one of the directors from Home Channel. He said, “You have these people in America that are 300 pounds yet they go to a restaurant and have a portion that’s made for four people.” Well you can’t tell me you don’t know what to do. You just can’t tell me that. That doesn’t wash. I’m sorry. What is when you hold up that red card, right? You’re red card, you’re out of here because it doesn’t follow. You can’t tell me that you are 200 pounds overweight that you want to have a Big Mac. Come on. You tell me that you can’t do it. Of course you can. You know the problem. So just say to yourself, what do I want to do? Do I want to live long enough to see my kids graduate from varsity? Yeah, if that’s a goal, then stop eating it. But it starts with the why. I don’t mean this to sound harsh. It’s that we have to go back beyond the diets and what plan Doctor X or Doctor Y or Doctor Nandi’s saying. You have to go back to yourself and say, “What makes me tick?”

 

Stacey Holland:I think that deserves … another round of applause. I think it’s also the reason why it’s a fundamental flaw in our education system because we stigmatize mistakes. We’re scared, from a young age, to get things wrong and yet that’s how we learn in life.

 

Partha Nandi:Correct.

 

Stacey Holland:I know that you had a question earlier on so I want to give you an opportunity to ask it now.

 

Audience:You’ve mentioned organic milk and that sparked the idea. I’m always drinking, what is it? [crosstalk 00:40:38] milk. Is that bad or is it okay?

 

Partha Nandi:What kind of milk is that by the way? [crosstalk 00:40:46] It’s pasteurized milk but it’s not [crosstalk 00:40:49] That’s fine but it’s not organic is it? You know, listen, I think that it’s okay to take that. I think it’s okay if you can afford it. If you can’t afford organic milk I think it’s okay. People there are a lot of people that feel-

 

Audience:But by choice would one drink fresh milk over that?

 

Partha Nandi:I actually believe that pasteurized milk, I actually believe that I would prefer that over non-pasteurized milk because for generations, I mean there’s a reason why it’s named after Louis Pasteur because we used to die of certain diseases before we did that. I would prefer pasteurized milk but I’ll tell you there’s no evidence to show either way. As far as organic versus non-organic, I think it’s, to me it’s important because I think I want to give my children the best shot that they can have. It may be too late for me because you know I’ve been drinking all kinds of stuff for a long time. I’m being a little bit tongue-in-cheek here. I’m being facetious. But I think for them at a young age, their immune system, their brain is really functioning and expanding rapidly so I want to give them all the tools I can. But if somebody can’t afford it, I say please give them milk.

 

I am a huge proponent of milk. I think it’s one of the best absorbable sources of protein out there. I think that it’s great that we can drink milk. I don’t think everybody’s gonna explode if they drink milk like is being advocated. I don’t like almond milk. I think almond milk is like no milk. You shouldn’t even call it milk. There’s no protein in the darn thing. I mean look at almond milk, it’s one gram of protein. It’s nothing. Versus nine grams. How can they call it milk?

 

Stacey Holland:Nicci do you agree with this?

 

Nicci Robertson:Yes and no. I’d want to know how much you’re drinking. I want to know are you experiencing any weird symptoms? Then you’re fine.

 

Audience:No. I’ve just an honest question whether it’s-

 

Stacey Holland:Good or bad?

 

Audience:Something to be using. Has it got any value whatsoever is the first question.

 

Nicci Robertson:It’s got a protein value, that’s about it. I wouldn’t say it’s a super food by any stretch of the imagination.

 

Audience:But what is better?

 

Nicci Robertson:Organic.

 

Audience:Pasteurized fresh milk or?

 

Nicci Robertson:Even your organic milk is a pasteurized milk.

 

Partha Nandi:It’s pasteurized.

 

Nicci Robertson:The different is a cow that eats organic grass and doesn’t have hormones injected into it and growth hormones and isn’t subject to so much chemical. That’s what you’re gonna find in your organic milk. So your chemical component is going to be that much lower. That’s-

 

Partha Nandi:But that’s organic versus non, that’s not pasteurized versus non-pasteurized. Pasteurized is a process, you know, it’s different. But organic versus non-organic, pick organic if you can but if you can’t, I still think milk is a great source of nutrients. I think that, and we are starting to poo-poo that but I give it to my kids and I think it’s very healthy to do it.

 

Stacey Holland:So are we saying organic first, second if she had to choose between the long-life and fresh milk you’d choose the fresh milk?

 

Partha Nandi:Pasteurized.

 

Stacey Holland:Pasteurized milk and then long-life-

 

Partha Nandi:But there’s no evidence to back up what I’m saying. It’s just that I believe pasteurized is better. But there’s no evidence to say that milk she’s drinking is actually harmful in any way.

 

Stacey Holland:Is milk not one of these trigger foods though that we should be avoiding? [crosstalk 00:43:43]

 

Partha Nandi:For not everybody. That’s the thing, it’s being generalized, that the whole population’s gonna explode because they drink milk. At least in our country they say, “Oh, milk, milk. Doctor, I’m sure I’m lactose intolerant.” I say well what evidence is there? They have none. Because they’ve read some brochure.

 

Stacey Holland:It’s a buzzword now and so yeah.

 

Partha Nandi:There’s a whole industry trying to have people have lactose-free and almond this and coconut that. I think it’s okay but you shouldn’t call it milk. It’s not the same thing.

 

Stacey Holland:We’ll be right back with Doctor Nandi after this …

 

Audience:I have another milk question actually.

 

Stacey Holland:Okay. Another milk question.

 

Audience:Sorry. Because I was always told that no, you’re probably lactose intolerant because you’ve got sinus problems and it turned out that it was actually from gluten. But the whole thing with milk is is that everybody is kind of like going organic this, that, and the other. As far as I’m concerned anything that actually grows is organic should we should be saying rather natural. But the milk thing is not so much of whether you’re going for the UHT long-life or pasteurized, it’s about the homogenization. Trying to stay away from homogenized milk I believe what people should be doing because when it gets homogenized all the fat cells are broken down which makes it easier for the fat to get into your system and mess up your arteries. Would you agree with that?

 

Partha Nandi:I would but you know here’s the thing, I actually believe fat’s not always bad. I think that you need some fat in your diet. I think that obviously milk doesn’t have all the good fat in it but I think that fat is a bad word for most people. They think if they have fat that something bad’s gonna happen immediately.

 

Stacey Holland:Carbs, carbs is, that’s not a bad word right-

 

Partha Nandi:The problem is sugar and fat. “Oh doc, don’t give me no sugar. Don’t give me no fat, man. That’s all I need.” But you need 25% of your body to have fat because that’s a building block of your body. No fat, no cells. So that’s the other part that I think is a misnomer. We need to let people know they can’t drink a gallon at a time. You see, I see teenagers in America, they drink it no glass needed. One of my partners, his son, and I couldn’t believe it. They’re drinking four gallons of milk. So again, it’s moderation and it’s not about any absolute statements.

 

I think that but if you look at volume concentration, you have very few foods that give the same nutrient concentration in that volume. It’s hard to find it. Where are you gonna find the amount of protein, the amount of fat, the amount of carbs in a container? It’s difficult, that’s not manufactured by somebody. Obviously people will disagree but I think it’s an alternative as long as you don’t have sensitivity to it or an allergic reaction I think it’s okay.

 

Stacey Holland:I’m gonna take one final question before we close. Yes.

 

Partha Nandi:Thank you.

 

Audience:It’s a different question. It’s regarding spices.

 

Partha Nandi:Ah, I like it. Oh yes. I like my spices.

 

Audience:Are all the spices are good for our health or not because I experienced that when we have functions, most old people will say, “I don’t want food with a lot of spices.” When I grew up, years back, our parents would grow their own vegetables. When they cook it they would only cook it with salt. Meat, everything, no spice, no nothing. They never had diseases like diabetes, cancer, and all that. So since we started eating spices and spicy food we started experiencing all these diseases. Thank you.

 

Stacey Holland:Are you referring to condiments or is it the type of chili-

 

Audience:Type of spices of whatever.

 

Stacey Holland:Okay, okay.

 

Partha Nandi:First of all, I would not use a bunch of salt. I do think that harms your body. A bunch of salt, especially for people who are hypertensive like myself, is not great. Limit your salt, for sure. That is definitely, there’s no bias about that or conjecture. You have to avoid, not avoid it completely but limit it so you’re not pouring it on. Secondly-

 

Stacey Holland:And would you recommend, sorry to break in Doctor Nandi, Himalayan salt versus-

 

Partha Nandi:No, I don’t. I don’t try to make it difficult. I just think iodized salt, that’s it. I think iodized salt is okay I just, I would not have a ton of it. You see people, they just pour it on like there’s nothing else. You can actually adjust your food accordingly. You can make your taste buds better. The question about spices, it’s not all or none. It clearly is helpful, so I’ll give you some examples. Turmeric is clearly to be one of the super spices. It doesn’t change the taste of your food, which is great. It just changes the color. Cumin, on the other hand, will change the taste of your food. So it’s an acquired taste for those of you who don’t use it. But both of those are incredible autoimmune system repairers, rather. It helps you with inflammation. It helps control sugar, glucose, metabolism. It helps with a variety of diseases. Exactly so cinnamon also can help you with hypertension. That’s actually been shown in studies.

 

The idea is that spices can be a part, not the whole thing. What I don’t want to talk about too much is that we used to use spices and we didn’t have any of these problems. I think it’s a multifold factors that caused those problems. Spices will help to heal them and try to repair it but alone, it has to be part of a diet and lifestyle. But you’re absolutely right, I would encourage using spices as long as you can tolerate it. Even for older folks, it doesn’t matter. You just have to do it slowly over time. We give it to our children. We use turmeric and cumin in almost anything that we can. And absolutely cinnamon. And we use honey instead of sugar if we can. These are tried and true things that have been there for a lifetime.

 

Garlic, also. Garlic used to be a super food for centuries. I mean the amount of nutrient content with no calories at all in this little tiny thing is unbelievable. So please go spice it up as much as possible but I want to warn you, it’s not the whole thing. That we have to do more. There is so much more that’s going on in South Africa and outside that’s causing us to have this problem. The number one thing is no movement whatsoever and eating crap.

 

Stacey Holland:And the quality of our food, the quality of our ingredients-

 

Partha Nandi:Yeah, crap. Exactly. You can put spice on crap, it’s still crap.

 

Stacey Holland:Nicole-

 

Partha Nandi:People have this, so-

 

Stacey Holland:Sorry. Sorry, Doctor Nandi. We’re running short on time. I’m gonna give you the final question. It comes from Dalen and he says, “I’ve recently come off caffeine and coffee. I miss the kick but I know that too much is not good for me. What natural alternatives are there and will they give me that kick?”

 

Nicole Allen:Green tea has caffeine in it. It so depends. So many people, chocolate yes but it’s not really. Well yes, raw cacao-

 

Stacey Holland:Raw cacao.

 

Nicole Allen:… is absolutely a natural alternative. Absolutely. I think it depends. A lot of people miss coffee because they like the taste of coffee-

 

Stacey Holland:That stimulant effect, yeah.

 

Nicole Allen:A lot of people drink it for the stimulant effect. Other people drink it just because they really like the taste. If it’s the caffeine that you’re missing, raw cacao like we said, green tea. But really once it’s worked it’s way out of your system you’ll be fine.

 

Partha Nandi:Some revolutionary sleep. Guys, sleep. Please sleep.

 

Stacey Holland:Okay we do have to wrap it up. Although my eye has just caught one final question which I’m gonna give to you guys ’cause I actually think it’s a good question and she’s posted it more than once. It’s from Juliette Suarez-Gonsalves and she said, “Life after gallbladder removal, I’ve had mine removed 16 years ago and battle everyday with diet and nutrient absorption.” It’s a question that I’ve heard other people ask as well. What can she do?

 

Partha Nandi:So the gallbladder is responsible for something like fat absorption mainly. So what happens is that because you don’t have a storage mechanism the biology shoots through. So a lot of people have problems with diarrhea because what’s happening is that the bile salts that are secreted, it stimulates the intestinal system. So the bile shoots through. Normally there’s a little bag that collects it and then your body’s nervous system says that it’s time to release it when there’s fat and need digestion, it squeezes it through. You don’t have that so it’s constantly coming through. In some people that’s a massive problem. So there’s many things you can do. You can obviously avoid fat in your diet as much as possible. Secondly, there’s medicines that absorb that. One that’s called cholestyramine that you can use that absorb the bile salts and that almost, in the majority of patients, take care of it. Take care of that, because you still have the digestive enzymes and the digestive material that the bile cells contain. However, you just have too much and it’s not regulated. It’s going all the time.

 

Stacey Holland:Okay. Nicci, any final closing thoughts from you regarding that question?

 

Nicci Robertson:Yeah. When you’re looking at gallbladder your food choices are so limited. Digestion is impeded. It’s not, very often when you’ve got a problem where you’ve had a gallbladder taken out there’s other issues as well. Very often low digestive enzymes or low stomach acid. So you’ve got to be very careful about green vegetables. Very often people with no gallbladder find it very difficult to eat green vegetables. That doesn’t mean don’t eat them, it means there’s another way around that you can still get them in whether it’s smoothies or juices. So you can still get that nutrition down. In fact, just even going back to the antioxidant question, that just came up for me again was you know when somethings working for you when you feel it working. So if you have a smoothie with organic vegetables, or not even organic, but you’ll feel a difference so fast. It’s almost like something switches on in your body and you don’t get that from a pill. So yeah, there’s always a way to get the nutrition into the body. Not just the traditional ways.

 

Partha Nandi:But I will say though, one thing I will say is that the reason why green vegetables are a problem is because it stimulates the intestinal system. So that vegetables we use to get bowel movements because it stimulates the intestinal system. When it stimulates the intestinal system you have bile there. That’s what causes the lack of digestion. If you can absorb the bile cells you can eat those green vegetables. So the doctors have to give them that solution to absorb the bile cells, this medicine cholestyramine, then you should be able to eat the vegetables. It’s the reason why is because of the stimulation of the intestinal tract and that’s what results in the quote unquote digestion. It’s not really digestion but the abnormal movement of your intestinal tract that makes somebody feel like they’re not absorbing anything.

 

Stacey Holland:So the [inaudible 00:54:03] motility.

 

Partha Nandi:That’s exactly it. That the bile cells, if you put bile cells in an intestinal muscle it starts moving.

 

Stacey Holland:Yeah, okay.

 

Partha Nandi:It’s an irritant.

 

Stacey Holland:I wish we had more time. There’s really so many other questions that have come through. I know you guys would love to ask some more questions as well but unfortunately we do have to wrap it up. So let’s give our panel another round of applause … And Doctor Nandi, it’s so amazing having you in South Africa.

 

Partha Nandi:Oh, it’s my pleasure.

 

Stacey Holland:It’s so amazing having you come and share your knowledge, your insights, your experience with us as well. Please plan another trip very soon.

 

Partha Nandi:Absolutely. I will, thank you.

 

Stacey Holland:Because we have so much more to draw from you. Ladies, thanks again for joining us again. And thank you, to all of you, for coming through. You deserve a round of applause … I end each episode with a health mantra so we’re gonna end it off today as well. It’s basically you’re healthy, vibrant, and lean, loved, and take care of your being. That’s it. Namaste.

 

Partha Nandi:Namaste.