Food as Medicine

ladies and gentlemen please turn your attention to the stage as we begin our session we all make decisions every day that affect our health and well-being especially when it comes to food the time has come for us to start thinking about what we eat in a new way science is giving us the hard evidence that what we eat can indeed help us live longer healthier lives but when it comes to food and our health it's not just about the food it's about how our body responds to what we put in it good health is not just the absence of disease it's an active state maintained by our body's natural health defense systems systems that are hard at work from the day we are born until our very last breath the foods that we choose to eat every day can either activate our defenses or damage them what are the health defense systems they are angiogenesis our blood vessels that bring oxygen and nutrients to every cell in our body our stem cells that repair and regenerate our organs even as we age our microbiome the healthy bacteria in our gut our DNA that can protect and repair itself when it's damaged and our immune system which is more powerful than we ever imagined when these defenses fail our health fails and when we support them with foods that boost our defenses our bodies become stronger healthier and more able to resist in fight the diseases that we fear the most more than 2-hundred foods have been discovered to improve our circulation activator stem cells feed our microbiome protect our DNA and bolster our immunity and what this means is that we can eat to defend ourselves against conditions like diabetes heart disease obesity autoimmune conditions dementia and even cancer what's important is that we can now focus our attention on what to add to our diet and not just what to cut out as a physician and a scientist I've seen the power of medicine in treating disease but foods are even more powerful because they can prevent disease in the first place so when it comes to food in our health there are no paradoxes it's clear science tells us which foods boost our health defenses food as medicine is not just an idea whose time has come it's an idea that's absolutely essential to our health for each and every one of us so whether you're trying to stay well or need to take back your health whether you're fighting a chronic disease or trying to prevent one in the first place the great news is that we can all eat to beat disease good morning thank you for joining us for this food as medicine discussion food is medicine is a hot topic these days and it's a really important topic we know that food and diet-related disease is now a leading cause of death in many places around the globe outpacing tobacco in many countries including here in the United States obesity rates are skyrocketing we're now predicted to have at least half of our adult population with obesity by the year 2050 that means skyrocketing rates of obesity related chronic diseases and and more than that we now have a body of emerging science showing us that we need to look at food not just for its ability to prevent us from getting sick but also for the power it might hold to treat illness when we are sick so we have an all-star panel I mean that actually today truly we've got some rock stars on the panel I will start here on my left representative Tim Ryan rock star rock star representing Ohio's 13th district in our United States Congress serving since 2003 and also you may not know he is the author of the book the real food revolution healthy eating green groceries and the return of the American family farm the rock star dr. William Lee a physician a scientist a leader of the angiogenesis foundation and also author of eat to beat disease which you just released and has now achieved New York Times bestseller status congratulations and I guess you're a rock star the one and only edge member of the rock band u2 he's won 22 Grammy Awards has campaigned for human rights and philanthropic causes around the world it also serves on the board of the angiogenesis foundation yeah so edge I'm going to start with you I'm going to ask the big question many people may be wondering what the hell are you doing here talking about food well I have to admit there's inside this Rockstar outer is a science geek and I'm fascinated science but but what led me to get involved in in this particular area of science was a family crisis as often happens my seven-year-old developed leukemia and my response to that was to do a deep dive into the science the medical science everything related to her illness and that led me to William Lee in the angiogenesis foundation and when I discovered this new area of scientific research called angiogenesis I was equally intrigued and fascinated but also I was surprised that I hadn't heard about it and when I started to really figure it out I realized that there's an awful lot that we still don't know information that's out there that has not really filtered through to the point where we can benefit from it so I decided to join the board to help spread the news of angiogenesis and what it can mean to personal health and public health and your daughter is my daughter-in that twenty-one and she is she's beautiful and totally healthy so this big word we're using angiogenesis dr. Lee can you help explain to those of us who aren't doctors what that means right well angiogenesis is how our body grows blood vessels we've got 60,000 miles worth of blood vessels and every single one of us and it brings oxygen and nutrients to every single cell so it's in fact something that when we feed ourselves our blood vessels bring that neut those nutrients to everywhere else in our body when those blood vessels are perfectly in balance where health is imbalance when they're deficient our organs starve and we need to feed them more and if they're hijacked or the blood vessels a hijacked by diseases like cancer it can actually feed the cancer too the disease so this is one of a number of different of a health defense systems that we've actually discovered not only can biotechnology deliver breakthrough treatments but we actually now believe after 25 years of working in this field that our food is an important activator of our defenses like angiogenesis as well and you I know in your 25 years you've studied a lot of diseases and a lot of different strategies for beating those diseases what is it that has made you focus on food well so one of the privileges that we've had as a nonprofit organization is to serve as a nexus with industry government and academia and we looked at common denominators of disease as a way of having economies of scale so rather than just focus on one disease and one target and dive really deeply we were very interested in seeing how blood vessels as an example could cut across multiple diseases and if you could actually you know hit one successfully could you pull the bow back and send an arrow through many different diseases and that's what led us to help develop treatments for cancer complications of diabetes and also vision loss as our successes started to keep pouring out one of the things that we realized is that you know as we know in our health care system we only have so much resource to be able to dedicate to sick people and new medicines are indeed expensive and so I switched our thinking into what if we were to prevent disease so that we could have enough more resources in a pot for the people that couldn't avoid it and if you're going to talk about prevention you can't talk about drugs you have to talk about health and you have to talk about an intervention like food and that's what led me to use really the same serious sights that we have used for drug development to really begin looking at food as medicine so it sounds like this is again not a doctor so bear with me but it sounds like what you're saying is we have researchers and doctors that sit in different trenches studying heart disease diseases of the eye and we but what you have done is lift up and tried to find the common the commonality and that's what you're going for we are very interested in common denominators and and I think food is a uniter and a common denominator for all of us and all of our health which is why this topic is so important an edge what is what's the hope with an angiogenesis foundation are you seeking to raise money for research are you lobbying for new policies are you trying to activate a grassroots of consumers what's what's the hope there's there's so many different areas where we think there could be benefit and improvement communication we've been to Washington a few times and Tim is doing great work with his book and his platform that he's developing to make food an important political issue but we we wanted to try and foster more communication between the different government agencies because there's so much low-hanging fruit there in terms of knowledge and information that has not been tapped into fully we want to encourage more education for people in medical school because this scant education for for doctors in terms of diet and virtually like nothing for angiogenesis but also there's other things that may be on down the road I think we're frustrated a little bit that foods that are known to have medical benefits cannot advertise that on the labels when they're when they're for sale for good reasons because they yeah the FDA want to prevent exploitation of the public and it's an understandable resistance to to allowing medical claims on food packaging but I think there's so much evidence now from population studies particularly to show that certain foods really have health benefits that it's I think it's time to to look at that again and may possibly find some accommodation for for these foods that have known impact and before we turn to representative Ryan just to put a finer point on what you just said we've got a chart which is how you convinced me to show what you're finding we explained to us that this is right so this is a an actual set of experiments that my organization conducted and on the vertical axis is really a set of different medicines that have been tested against healthy blood vessels and in this particular case the top black line are the number of blood vessels that might be feeding a cancer for example and testing normal drugs whether they're cancer drugs or common drugs like statins or an antibiotic or a non ventilatory non-steroidal inflammatory medicine you can kind of see that even common medicines in our medicine cabinet can actually have cancer starving effects by cutting off the blood supply feeding tumors well we decided to take an agnostic look I've labeled the drugs here if what happens if we use the same system to study food for example you can order a chemical and send it to a cancer research lab and within a few days know exactly what the effect is but if you were to actually take a food and give it to the same researcher they traditionally using traditional medical research wouldn't know how to actually test that so we hacked into that to say well what happens if we treat everything the same and here is what we actually find if I could have it back up in the screen a second this is actually comparing a head-to-head foods against the medicines and this is again I could take away the labels for everything and if you were with a Pfizer Eli Lilly Genentech and you just saw these bar charts you would find it's remarkable to have these activities but you can see when you actually look examine the foods as medicines the potential that's actually there so this is one of the things that we really desperately need to move forward in is to really peel back the layers of the onion and try to take a look at what the potential benefits actually this is an opportunity for agencies to collaborate academia to collaborate amongst each other and ready to form a new field to study exactly this I love that you just took a picture of this we can I'm gonna send it to the Italian side of my family and say look at it down there I thought you guys told me it was like at the table this one struck a chord with me I have loved ones who are on tamoxifen and and so I looked at wait she could eat red grapes I mean what dosage are we talking about how many red grapes would you need to eat to have the same effect as tamoxifen well as edge actually implied that you know there are public health studies that are out there and as a physician one of the things that and I and I've been quite involved with products that have gone through development and gone through the FDA so evidence is really the key thing I mean in medicine the medical research if we don't have evidence we have nothing else and so in developing the evidence we take a look at public health studies we look at clinical trials we look at some of them are small we look at animal studies we look at what's happening in the cell of the demic image and a genetic level with public health studies one of the unsung opportunities is to be able to take a look at the actual data and when you see that for example soy is correlated not with increasing breast cancer but decreasing it and there is a study of 5000 women who already have breast cancer that show that those who ate more soy actually had lower risk and better mortality outcome so you let science kind of surprise us with the facts and we even know what the molecules might be there's phytochemicals and just genistein we even know the dose from the public health studies because you can calculate and back calculate what that would be which is about 10 grams of soy a day which calculate which which is about the amount of so you get in a cup of soy milk okay so again we can kind of boil it all down to concrete things that people can use right all right Tim tell us that you wrote a book the real food revolution what motivated you to write a food book I wrote a book about mindfulness meditation I was of course every congressman does and and and I was as I was doing the research I was really starting to understand the effects of stress on the body wasn't just stress it was always stress and diet stress and food stress in nutrition or lack of nutrition so the second kind of part of the presentation really is food and my wife has a gluten allergy our daughter does and so I became very sensitive to her and what we were trying to we were trying to have a baby and we I met dark dr. Mark Hyman and Mark got my wife healthy primarily addressing the issue around food and supplements and the kind of things that she was missing because our food doesn't have what it used to have and so I just became very passionate about it and I you know as I sit on the Appropriations Committee in Congress and that's the committee that spends money and you start watching really the long-term trajectory of our budget trillion-dollar year deficits as far as the eye can see you start understanding how we spent two and a half times as much on our health care as every other industrialized country and get worst results and then the real kicker is 75% of our health care cost goes to chronic diseases that are largely preventable and so to me it's like okay where are we gonna get the money to do all the other things we need to do to be a competitive country and you look at this seventy five percent to two three trillion dollars a year as we move out into the future and then you you meet the the researchers and the scientists and to me was like okay we've really got to have a national conversation around food is medicine and really prevention and how do we realign the health care system to pay for your soy milk if we have to because we're gonna save a lot of money in the long run right I'm glad you raised that cuz there's there was Milken Institute research published last year about the cost of the obesity crisis and diet-related disease which as you just mentioned our leading driver of healthcare costs so just in the year 2016 the indirect cost of obesity in the u.s. were one point to four trillion which added to the direct cost of 481 billion we had about 1.7 trillion and health costs associated with diet-related disease what in the world what more convincing does the Congress need to help invest us in prevention and better diets why are we focusing on sick care yeah you know it just I think that's where the argument is right now and that's where money is I mean people are making a lot of money off of a disease care system and so I'm trying to have a broader conversation like you can't talk about health care without talking about health and you can't talk about health without talking about food and you can't talk about food without talking about agriculture and moving to regenerative agriculture and actually great title of my book is the real food revolution and I love how all the scientists and doctors come up with like fake food and you know Frank and food and all this stuff that we're eating now but it's like about real food and and so I think we have to talk to the American people again not being a prude around food no I mean I call myself like a 80 percenter like 80 percent of the time we my family we try to you know do it the right way then there's a Cleveland Browns football game on and I think it doesn't happen but that's okay you know I think if we all just recognize that if we can get to 80% you know we're gonna have the money to reinvest back into our communities reinvest back in the prevention reinvest back into you know decarbonizing the economy helping farmers I mean all of these things that are really important can come from the money we would save if we just have leaders in the country saying okay this is the way we're gonna go and just quit lastly how do we give rebates and refunds to patients how do we reverse the incentives for doctors where they can actually make a little bit of money keeping us healthy as opposed to only making money when they're dealing with us being sick what are some of the concrete policy proposals that you think have could have traction well it starts with some simple things I you know and I have bills on all of these that I'm proposing is to have a solid bar in every school you know have a school garden in every school so we begin the long term educational process of actually tying healthy food how to grow it how to plan it how to grow it how to cook it I would love to see a you know I told you I'm half Italian so I'd love to see a kitchen in every school where we're actually teaching kids how to prepare food and get back to the old home ech days where we're teaching these really important skill sets so it starts with some simple things like that I have a bill that puts a food coordinator in every school so you can really utilize the exact amount that goes in per kid it's like a dollar twelve or dollar seventeen for a school lunch but if you put a school coordinator in the schools that can actually like not just get food and put it in a microwave and heat it up that's highly processed but have someone like look at the in holistic way of how a school system feeds its kids that you can start drawing on the local food market and you can do healthier food and it doesn't cost any more other than that position of having somebody look at it so I have a bill on that and then we you know we have an in the enriched act which teaches helps medical schools fund nutrition education in our medical schools most medical schools don't need the national standard that they need to meet in order to teach nutrition those Doc's and health care professionals should be out in the world as educators to the public I mean if we're gonna penetrate change the culture I was talking with edge about earlier we need rock stars I mean not that I'm not a rock star but we need rock stars we need athletes we need musicians we need people who are out there that can help influence the culture so there's those things and including doctors the last piece is really then we have a bill that creates a National Institute for nutrition let's that that will actually take the knowledge and figure out how to leverage food as medicine how do we really understand the microbiome I mean when I first learned about gut bacteria my staff's that don't ever say that in public you're gonna scare the crap out of people but how do we understand a microbiome and how do we understand what's going on in our gut and how that relates to mental health issues depression cognitive functioning so just to put a bow on it we have got to be a competitive country we're his brutally global competitive market we only have 330 million people in the country so we have all got to be functioning at peak levels and so to feed our kids 70 grams of sugar in the morning which some schools do with a chocolate milk and a rice krispies treat you are you're setting them up for failure and we pay the subsidized a lot of those foods and then we pay for the Medicaid that's going to cover them with diabetes you'll wonder why the American taxpayer is like I'm done with all of you I'm not voting I don't want to talk to you no one knows what they're talking about you're not addressing the real problems so the Institute can help us like really define and dial in on what the real solutions are yeah can I get your reactions to I think it's a great idea and one of the things that struck us at the angiogenesis foundation is that we don't have enough knowledge about the state we call healthy and what we and will and the scientists that he is talking to advocate would be a search for biomarkers for health which are elements in your blood that you can test and it can give you some indication of your level of disease resistance and an example would be cholesterol we get cholesterol levels which indicates our chances of getting cardiovascular disease in later life well how about if we had another 4 or 5 that would tell us well this is your cancer resistance level this is Alzheimer's resistance level there's no one looking for those right now and I think if we if we put a lot of effort in and we found those it would be an amazing feedback because I think what we're about is empowering people I think this is the age of personalized medicine on two fronts people actually taking control of their own health and if you have the tools to understand your current state and your future state I think it would give people so much more a sense of power and control and well you've said to me that we're literally flushing valuable biomarkers we say more about what that means definitely don't talk about this we need to understand about our health and you know I think that there's been so much of the conversation about what to cut out of our lives including unhealthy foods I'd like to flip that conversation around and say what do we need to lean into then we can embrace so if we wanted to be informed of what healthy foods to add to our system it would sure be nice to know if there's something that we could measure whether it's through a wearable whether it's through something that's a home monitoring system whether it's through telemedicine Sur or whether it's through a blood blood test in the doctor's office but the one sort of I was asked once by a an investor so what's missing today that would change the game and ice about food and health and I said you know every single day the toilet flushes away all these markers that we are not measuring you can imagine anybody who is a saltwater aquarium knows that there's a floating gauge that she's measuring everything in the water and if you bluetooth that back to a person you could actually begin to monitor our health at home so that's just an example of how technology the science is advanced to help us understand the body in ways coming out of biotechnology right we can apply to nutrition technology itself has advanced for us to be able to learn more about ourselves and I think that's what we all need to be able to connect those dots can I ask you because this will if I don't other people will line up to ask you what do you eat well it's most important for us to incorporate it right diet so I will say right now for disclosure that I believe that diversity is really important so I like to eat very diverse ly there is no such thing as a single superfood or a super diet there are certain foods that are beneficial and I write about more than 200 of my book and there are certain diet dietary patterns that are really healthy we know the Mediterranean diet pattern is very healthy we know that there's certain Asian dietary patterns that are healthy what's really interesting is now thinking about what we should add to our dies so with my knowledge I navigate my day sort of in my head recognizing things on menus I will reach for green tea I'll have coffee because we know the coffee actually actually slows cellular aging perfect these are good things right [Laughter] you know the the response I've gotten to my bookie to beat disease has been so overwhelming positive because there's no shame there's no guilt there's only science and science tells us mother nature's laced our foods with things that are potentially healthful for us edge given all that you've learned you go how do I apply it well like will green teas now part of my life which it wasn't before fresh berries every morning and I suppose lots of universe green vegetables and then balance yeah because this is all about balance in the end and trying to find good quality food I think this is something that Tim's really right to be concerned about is that industrial food production has slowly degraded the quality of food and so finding really good quality food is part of the the thing the tragedy is that in certain parts of the world it's hard to find there are what are called food deserts in America zones where it's almost impossible to find fresh fruits and vegetables so there's a lot of it's not a level playing field for everybody it's it's and that's I think part of also what the Foundation's interested in is democratizing health finding ways that it's accessible to everybody and with medical insurance becomes so expensive and pharmaceutical speaking coming so expensive prevention is really a much better approach thank you for saying that and I know that's close to your heart affordability and accessibility because too often in these food conversations or talking about diets that are really only achievable and affordable for an economic elite do you feel like well the guidelines that you lay out in your book are achievable for somebody on a budget right so there's no diet in my book it's really a framework and a list of information that helps people make their own best decisions based on their preferences regardless of their economic status and regardless of their culture as well because I think that the wonderful thing about America that we all come from different cultural backgrounds and we can all choose from our own value system foods that are actually good for us the key is really to remove conjecture remove mythology remove urban legends and really you know marketeering which occurs as well about foods and and and try to just make that science that's available surfaced and then really invest in doing more that work and it requires collaboration we talk politics for a second we have to trust me but you're not a naive freshman congressman this is your eighth term right yeah so how which of these ideas that have been surfaced already today or other ideas do you think might have the most traction where can we reach across the aisle and make some progress I think some of the probably of some of the smaller ones you know but that's where you start in politics you start taking steps in the direction of salad bars in our schools I think really focusing around our kids and and helping understand what we're feeding them in our schools and how to make that environment not just a place of learning around reading writing and arithmetic but also around food and health and and and being a vibrant you know vital member of your family in your society so I think those are some easy steps that we can take I actually think there's an opportunity around urban agriculture I think you know we have a lot of these older communities that have a lot of blight in them so Youngstown Ohio which is the city out one of the cities I represent Akron Ohio they went from a hundred and sixty thousand people now down the lake 60,000 and so there's a lot of blight in these in these communities so Tate having a national initiative where we take the blight down and we build up a robust urban agriculture initiative in the United States I think is something that is really doable and it injects healthy food it tries to take care of the food desert issue but it's also economically viable and there you know again there's also affordable housing issues to that that need to be addressed but being healthy food in these communities is something that I would think we can do the National Institutes of nutrition is going to end up being a battle because you're gonna start pooling agencies from different areas and that turns into a bloodbath all the time but I think here's the key around politics which is why I think edge and others who are into this stuff is really important there are a lot of people in the country millions and millions of people who get what doc is saying here they understand it they know about it they know the science behind it and if they don't they know it intuitively and those people aren't politically active around a food agenda there is no food agenda in in Washington or in the nation so having a food agenda and using the power of all of these books that you see around veganism and being in a vegetarian and paleo and kido and all this stuff it's millions and millions and millions of people how do we activate them and is that a Democrat issue or a Republican issue I have no clue I mean I don't know is it is it I just that's always confounded me I mean we might disagree on our particular diets and we certainly are divided by a lot in this country but the one thing that unites us and all humans on the planet we all eat we're all eaters we are making multiple food choices a day and it always surprises me that talking about good food then some child becomes politicized it seems like it would be a win for a politician you would reach every voter issue that applies to every voter I'm thinking of the political shows right now one side saying this side is for food in this other side they're not food vote against them and well on this topic you have now announced your candidacy for the office of President I'd states and have grown your hat in the ring for 2020 can we expect food to be a part of your platform it's gonna be a major part of the platform I'm gonna give a big policy speech in June early June at Tufts University with dari who runs their nutrition school there who's another genius sorry yeah we're gonna outline moving the discussion from disease care sick care to health and food in agriculture and you you know that's gonna be a big part of my agenda it's gonna be an industrial policy in the United States health and education and taking care of our vets in the health and education piece directly tie into food and saving this money so that we can invest into the future economy and electric vehicles not too clearly not part of this gut discussion but how do we dominate the electric vehicle market how do we dominate AI how do we dominate additive we're gonna get the money and are we gonna have a workforce that's vital and ready are we gonna be creative and innovative and healthy to dominate the world as they said we only have 330 million people we better all be operating at peak performance and if we're gonna make sure we're influencing the world in appropriate ways so yeah I mean I'm excited about talking about it and since I announced like three weeks ago the support around food like I go on the normal political show it it's so funny to watch the the people interviewing me they asked me about health care and they want me to get in this big fight about you know the disease care system and I shift and start talking about food and they they're confused at first and then about a minute in there you know they're not in their head and that's the national conversation I think we need to have and I think we can really move the needle if we can energize these millions of people telling you we all eat we all have a political advisor to my knowledge this would make you I believe the first presidential candidate from from either major party to ever have a make a food policy speech you know running for office that's the plan and you mentioned something I think is also important I think policy and politics is important can be a morass sometimes sorry it feels but having folks like edge use his platform I mean I applaud you for you there are likely folks in this room who don't know jack about food but are here because they like your music well and that's okay by but you've probably helped shift some Minds how do we activate more people with different platforms outside of nerd world like this to talk about food it's it's an interesting issue as Tim was saying and well that there's a lot of information out there there's just being lost and that's that's part of the problem is quality information and so the the Internet is is a wonderful resource but my problem with it is no one's taking out the garbage it's like so much disinformation so I think we need to have sources that we really can trust and that means more research probably probably population studies because it is difficult to do a similar type of you know double-blind placebo trial on cabbage you know it's not it's just that it's difficult so population studies are very helpful because you might not be able to talk about the individual but you can talk about the mass trend that a certain lifestyle imparts in terms of health benefits and I think things like this you know spreading the word through these type of events you know I read that if you hadn't decided to pursue this little band with your high school buddies you would have become a doctor is that true I have no idea it's one of those imponderable questions but I certainly have found myself very interested in fascinated by this world and it's a wonderful thing that there's so much that's going right I think it's it be wrong to paint a bleak picture about medical science because you know we need pharmaceuticals and NIH is doing incredible work not just for America but for the globe in developing new drugs I suppose what we're advocating is is completing the picture you know we feel like this this part of the of the house that has not been decorated you know it's like it's been left idle and the food has the potential to really move the needle and I'm glad you raised sex I think there's an important clarifying point that we need to make critics of just even the term food as medicine have said it's unsettled science it's a dangerous idea to to mislead people into believing that food can cure a disease you are not you are not saying food in lieu of pharmaceuticals no no I'm not one of these physicians that have left my own playing field right to you know do woo science I Oracle products I don't sell supplements or anything like that I can tell you that I think we're at a inflection point where the investment in life sciences that has been in both the public and private sectors and the NIH is a great kind of crucible for the basic sciences that allowed us to develop all these really tremendous treatments like immune therapies for cancer are wiping out cancers and patients with metastatic disease things that we didn't think possible I think we're at this inflection point we can take the fruits of some of that knowledge and begin bringing in the right type of focus to be able to examine our food and so I don't think food is a replacement for medicine by any means I think food is actually a tool in the toolbox but it's been long been missing and that's really I think the the opportunity that everybody can rally behind because everybody understands when you're sick I mean one of the reasons I got into another reason I got into this is because when I was taking care of patients at the VA hospital you know something struck me that these men who were often overweight had terrible lung disease and other chronic diseases I realized that when they were in their 20s they were that cut buff defenders of our country they couldn't even serve unless they were perfectly fit and now I see them in a completely different state and it made me ask the question what happened and when they would actually put their coats on and leave my my medical office they'd always turn around and asked me hey Doc what should I do for myself and I realized as as I was never educated about that in med school or in training and hence you know what congressman Ryan's talking about an edge mention is that the need to be able to develop trust within our system of good information that doctors the medical community can rally behind and I think that will then really start to move the needle for this country and I want you each to have an opportunity to clarify to you same position you're not advocating food and Lua pharmaceuticals it food is an additional tool and it's that's the great thing about it it's an additional tool it's not in competition with with conventional protocols of treatment it's an addition to those but it as a preventative that's nothing altogether and it's a very powerful disease prevention tool saint-pierre and I'm doing this because there'll be somebody will quotes this out of context [Laughter] yeah no I mean it's the preventative piece I mean it's just it's funny cuz I'm on the side of you and I'm watching this confirmation no it's fine it's just interesting because I'm I'm like in the catbird seat and he's in there we're talking about teaching doctors about nutrition and like that's like a big thing like doctors don't know about nutrition and they don't talk to their patients about nutrition it's like help bizarre that sounds when you're over here have listening to the conversation but they don't so we have to do something about it and I think that that that pause right now is what we need so yeah like there's people writing probably bogus you know analyses of what we're talking about here and well wait a minute food they're trying to diminish the impact of food healthy food on our bodies it's like how did we survive 69 thousand years without you know pharmaceutical companies I mean it was our food and that's how we got here and and so we know that and it's just like when you stop and you pause which is why you know we collectively have to shift the conversation because once you shift the conversation I think this whole thing is about asking other questions so you say how do we fix healthcare as opposed to how do we get healthy if we ask the question how do we get healthy it totally shifts the paradigm yeah of with a conversation and then if you add edge and you look at like Tom Brady and LeBron James and high-performing peak athletes and what they eat it's like those people can influence the culture of what to eat and so this has got to be an American family conversation that you know I mean like Mike my great-grandparents came to America from Italy and I was fortunate because I grew up I would go to family parties and people would have you know talking broken English I mean that was my family but they had huge gardens they had that chicken coop out back you know and I asked my mother ask my grandma who killed the chicken she was like I did you know and then made the best chicken soup she would say and so like that we've lost that in the last however many years that that generational information that gets passed along about how to eat and some of the stuff tumeric and garlic and all these things like you know I mean the it's sad it really is because that was such that's such a beautiful way to live and I think when you look at like the blue zones in these communities it's not just about the food it's about the connection it's about gardening it's about having your own place plot of land to grow your own food it's about sitting after you cook it you cook the food and then you eat the food and then you have a little glass of wine with your family and it's that that connection that comes with food and so it's bigger than just the prevention it's a cultural thing that we have to get back and that's why I think the urban the urban Marshall Plan that we're going to be proposing with a lot of urban AG initiatives in it is more about than more about just food it's about building communities again and we're really disconnected today we think we're more connected because of these monsters that we carry around with us but the reality of it is we're not and food can really be an item that can help connect us to agree I'm not I'm going to connect us to the audience and see if there are folks who would like to ask a question if you don't mind the mic is coming around talk to us about the power of big AG that sells sugar and a lot of things that aren't helpful and and do you think get over that in Congress big AG so there's a huge consolidation in agriculture right now I mean it it looks smells and feels a lot like monopolistic behavior around seed and around chemicals that go on to the land and it's it's the soil is is depleting as I said there's 220 thousand metric tons of fish that get killed every year in the Gulf of Mexico I mean just take that in for a second real good sources of protein gone because of how we're doing this and so in order to break the big AG in that sense and I have I've had some actually some constructive conversations this week with some people who are active and and big agriculture who are starting to try to turn the chef's so how do we approach this in a constructive way by bringing people together but it's gonna take a lot of pressure from those millions of people I was talking about to build a political movement around food too to have enough political power so you know farmers haven't made a profit in five years and rural America is in recession and you add in the tariff issue and it's made it even worse the downtown's are tough there's a meth epidemic in in Iowa there's an opiate epidemic in Ohio and other states so the our society is ripping apart and so bringing more regional sustainable AG creates jobs in rural America it's healthier food I think it protects the farmer at the end of the day from the whims of the global commodities market so there could be a win-win-win here and so coming in with an agenda to reduce the monopolistic power shift the industry is only gonna happen if there's outside pressure from a political movement built around what we are talking about here that's the key that's why I say people I know you're getting like I understand how people feel about Washington DC and talking about flushing things down the toilet I'm pictured like in DC it'd be like Red Alert red alert we're getting over run with material here and people got to get involved you you it's an it's an absolute necessity today for for people who understand what doc has been talking about what edge is talking about you cannot sit on the sidelines you've got to be involved to help shift this system in the right direction or we're gonna belly up our health care system in our economy and you're gonna sit on the sidelines and say well there's people we're all you know I didn't want to do it you know I don't want to take that first step we have another question I've got a mic right back here yeah thanks for all you're doing I'm Canadian but just curious when Michael Bloomberg imposed the soda tax years ago he got a lot of heat for for that can you guys comment all three of you on just sort of people behaving according to incentives like taxing soda and that kind of thing and specifically for Tim I mean salad bars in schools is obviously an incredible concept but how feasible is that if there's a soda vending machine in those schools so can you talk about kind of trying to remove sugar and and you know bad choices from the cafeteria in school yeah yeah no question well it's got to be you know it's got to be everything you know again feeding our kids chocolate milk so does I mean you look at a chocolate milk it has almost as much sugar in it as Coke or Pepsi so you know that's definitely got a shift I think this needs to be a comprehensive strategy so when you get into or you're gonna attack sugar or you're gonna tax this we can tax that for what I mean I think we got it like especially Democrats like wouldn't tax this tax that tack which you know I'm forced some of that for what though so what's the what's the reforms that are gonna come in place that we're gonna actually put the money in and what are we gonna do with it so you're making an argument to everybody like here's why here's the reform and it you know I've also seen studies I can't remember the country in South America that did all kinds of food performs in Brazil I can't it was a Brazil they said that even that what had more impact than even a sugar tax was limiting the marketing of these products to kids I know if it was just kids or the whole society from like say a.m. to 10:00 p.m. and they took like Tony the Tiger and the Froot Loops and all that and you couldn't use cartoon characters anymore to market food in the study was saying that that actually had more of an impact on reducing consumption of these products than the sugar tax dead right so now you talk trying to talk about a politically viable way forward right okay sugar tax we saw a Bloomberg certain networks came and blew it up or we're gonna limit marketing that may have more political legs than than the other I'm possibly incentivizing producers of quality food foods that actually have a health benefits making that it possible for them to make that known and put on the label of the food I think if if it's more profitable yeah people are gonna drift in those in that direction I think that's a really important point – I know Ray Dalio was here earlier and if you've not read his analysis of the real national emergency around income inequality you should but he talked about this double bottom line or triple bottom line and have a double bottom line where it's not like you have a corporate tax rate for example that's X for just straight bottom-line profit and you do whatever you want or you get a lower rate if you have more in line with stakeholders than just shareholders and the stakeholders would be the environment companies that are moving into the healthy food direction shifting these kind of practices away from high Glee added sugar I'm not just one example of like how you use the free market to really ramp this stuff up because take government forever to do anything so if you get the free market a line and you get those incentives lined up and you use some tax code incentives this this could take off and why wouldn't we want to reward those companies yeah I also think that entrepreneurship it will actually drive the opportunity to take this desire to have healthier food to create new opportunities and so you know at this meeting we've already heard from some of these small startups that have some brilliant ideas yeah I think they just need to work within an ecosystem that's going to encourage them to thrive and we need more of them because competition is good yeah right here hello yep so quick comment for edge and a question for Tim on the I like how that Rockstar gets the comment subject you mentioned biomarkers there's there's a company you should look at called color genomics that I'm a backer of that with Steve Jobs's wife and question for Tim how do we support you other than campaign donations are the programs that you're driving or or connected to that we could fund or otherwise get involved with to try to spread the message yeah so we're building this the campaign side out on Tim Ryan for America comm so you can find out about that piece and then the legislation that we're putting together and we're actually gonna sit down and like my official capacity with dari from troughs tops with doc and edge of course you're welcome to be a part of it building out the coalition around the National Institute for Anna nutrition so how do we get private sector venture capital public health education and we build out the movement to to really influence this and I well let's talk after cuz I'll get get connected but just you know help in that way cuz that that's how we're gonna end up moving the needle but on all these pieces of legislation to what I'd like to do is build out this movement so that all of you can go home and email or text or call your representative to say hey get on Tim Ryan's bill to put more nutrition into the medical schools or more salad bars or National Institutes of nutrition whatever so will will connect but I appreciate you asking because we need to build this out and I don't think I shared with you but I as an advisor to the Milken Institute on issues related to food nutrition and sustainability we are prepared and have discussed in the last 48 hours right how we're going to help move along the National Institute of nutrition so call her a few other a few other of these ideas who has the mic thank you first of all thank you all very interesting yesterday there was a panel here it was on food but a little different so everyone's solutions here I think have the aim of getting us back to the way we used to eat in in one way or another in yesterday's panel the CFO of impossible foods was here talking about a totally different approach which was using technology to take us forward to make food different in a way that he argues has good health benefits as well I'm curious if you all have a view on sort of technology driven solutions that are you know different from where we are evolutionarily then I think it's it's got to be part of the whole strategy of dealing with the problem clearly the global resources are overtaxed to the Mon you talk about the depletion of soil and and even the need for industrial production of food so innovations in in in food production that there are less taxing on the environment obviously hugely important and I would comment on the idea about food innovations who technology the key to that is to build trust with the people who actually the products would be consumed by and so I think that's not simply a technology solution that's also you know having credibility behind the actual solution one group is not going to be able to do by themselves but I think on mas will actually be able to get people to develop a higher level of trust which is you know to some extent why we need our leaders of a nation to be able to rally around this common cause we needed from the top-down but also from the bottom-up all to participate in this movement and I think the growth just quickly the growth needs to go to the communities that have been left behind so we were at a conference on Saturday where we were Saturday we were talking about it and someone's talking about growing the cells for meat memphis meats Memphis meat so they grow Italy taken the cells for beef and grow growing at beef and Walter Rob leans over to me from Whole Foods and he says what do you how do you think people in Ohio feel about that I said I'm not sure they're there yet and I said but if you put the facility that's gonna make that product in Youngstown or in the old meat pack areas in Milwaukee or areas that have been left behind all of a sudden you're shifting the culture so I'm saying we just got to be smart about how we do this and the double bottom line and the government can help steer some of that and then all of a sudden you're finding more and more ways to shift the culture in this direction with our last few minutes can we this is an interesting room and an interesting conference and that it's not a preaching to the choir type audience which many of us are people from all political sides different nations at different sectors so if you could put out one call to action what's the one thing you would ask folks to do when they leave this room get engaged vote social media organize wherever you are around your kids school your community like just start where you are you don't have to change the world just change where you are and be involved and you all are here so you all have a lot of influence in whatever community you're in you're probably really well-connected you probably have more money than most and you probably know people who have money how do you shift the diet in the school that your kids go to or in the community that you live if you just do that and everybody leaves this room and goes home and does that then we're off and running well I would say look for evidence because you want to be able to trust the information that you're gonna use to put food in your mouth and in your family's mouths every single day and you know that's one of the things that I write about in my book is more than 200 foods look for the ones that you actually enjoy prefer because then if you actually use that as your start for healthy eating you're already ahead of the game and so again we should be leaning into our diets and thinking about what we should add to our lives not simply what we should take away and be skeptical about claims that are you know sort of super foods because there really isn't anything we have to go back to or nature back to our roots and really sort of rediscover the things that we've always intuitively know well I think it's about educating yourself there is the information out there good quality information it's it's it's not easy to find sometimes but the angiogenesis foundation is a great source for instance on their website and then you know every time you go to the supermarket you're making a set of choices and once you you're empowered of that information I think you're gonna be in a better position to to buy the things that are gonna keep you healthy and I suppose spread the word spread the words or your friends what those things are yep you know I was curious about how you got the nickname edge and I was told that your band mates gave it to you because of your sharp mind I'm not gonna ask you if that's true because I know you're too humble to say if it is but I'll just say you have proven that to be the case here today so so much thank you and thank you everybody for listening [Applause] thank you for attending please make your way to the next session

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