Wednesday, March 4, 2015

The Nutrition Debate #293: The HEAL Clinics: Diabetes and Medical Weight Loss

As I said in #292, I am not angry at doctors, blah, blah, blah, “even though they are aware that how they are required to treat [Type 2 diabetic patients] will trap patients in a lifelong regimen of drug management, obesity and escalating diabetes.”  These clinicians, I said, “are in a tough spot.” But, there exists on the fringes of mainstream medicine a few doctors who have broken from the pack. Among them are academics (what have they got to lose?), and a few lone wolves/mavericks. Until now.
Individual practitioners, even those working in an academic setting (research/teaching/clinic), can have only a limited influence. Frequent submissions to peer-reviewed journals and writing popular books can add to the effect. Leadership in professional organizations where you can “set the agenda” helps too. But the real impact – the “cavalry to the rescue” impact ala Jeb Stuart – can only be realized by someone who leads a band of raiders effectively attacking from the rear.
The army of sheep – the obese, pre-diabetic and diagnosed Type 2s out there who are being herded into a “lifelong regimen of drug management, obesity and escalating diabetes” – are ready to be rescued. And the rear guard today, the physicians who know that they “are in a tough spot” because they follow “the current treatment protocol” that the medical establishment has ordained as the “standard of care,” and know it doesn’t work for the majority of patients, are ready too. Many of these physicians are looking, as we are, for a “rescue.”
Well, the time may be right. Or the fruit ripe. There’s certainly plenty of it “low-hanging.” ;) It’s time to introduce to the “partisans” (all of us who are trapped with similarly aligned clinicians) someone known to all of us “LC followers” who have been looking for answers and leadership. It is Eric Westman, MD, MHS, Associate Professor of Medicine at Duke University and Director of the Duke Lifestyle Clinic. He is perhaps best known to “our crowd” as the co-author of both “The New Atkins for a New You” and “Cholesterol Clarity.” He is also currently president of the American Society of Bariatric Physicians.
Dr. Westman’s newest venture is as Co-founder, President and Chief Medical Officer of HEAL Clinics, a start-up being developed by Bruce Rossiter, Co-founder, CEO, Chairman and chief fund-raiser. Rossiter has startup and venture capital experience to balance Westman’s medical expertise. The heretofore unattributed quote (“will trap patients in a lifelong regimen of drug management, obesity and escalating diabetes”) is lifted from the Private Placement Memorandum (6-pages) at the Investors tab at healclinics.com. The best part from a “sufferers” POV is Dr. Westman’s 2 ½ page Manifesto titled, “Benefits of HEAL Clinic’s Low-Carb Lifestyle – Putting Diabetes in Remission.” The remainder of this blog post is selected quotes from the PPM. I encourage you to click on this link and read about HEAL.
“Type 2 diabetes occurs when a person consistently eats too many carbohydrates. All carbohydrates (except for the fiber content and small amounts of vitamins and minerals) convert to blood sugar (glucose). When one consumes excessive carbs, the pancreas produces excessive insulin. It is both the excessive levels of glucose and insulin that produces harmful and chronic inflammation, damaging our cells and organs.”
“Excessive carbohydrate consumption is encouraged by the U. S. Dietary Guidelines and the food industry, which provides tens of thousands of highly processed, sugar and other carb-laden foods to entice us. Studies show that sugar is more addictive than cocaine. It is this combination of our own desire to eat excessive carbs and the food industry’s desire to sell carb-filled products that has created our obese and unhealthy population….”
“Many people not yet diabetic or pre-diabetic are asymptomatically obese, meaning they are obese but do not have symptoms yet, though they are at high risk of developing pre-diabetes and subsequently diabetes by consuming excessive carbohydrates. A segment of our population is normal in weight but still suffers from Type 2 diabetes or pre-diabetes.”
“Since excessive eating of carbohydrates can cause Type 2 diabetes, it can be put into remission by following a Low-Carb lifestyle. The HEAL Low-Carb Protocol is far more preferable than doctors prescribe medications and insulin that are expensive and have potentially dangerous side effects. It is well documented that the standard ‘pills-and-needles’ treatment method rarely puts diabetes into remission. However, it is certain that following HEAL’s Low-Carb Protocol will put almost every person with Type 2 diabetes into remission.”
“A Low-Carb lifestyle is not the medical establishment’s standard of care for Type 2 diabetes even though it is a safe, effective, and well-researched way to put the disease into remission. Perversely, many of the prescribed medications, such as insulin, cause weight gain and increase food cravings, making it difficult for a patient to lose weight. Most of the blood sugar control medications have side effects, many of them serious. The current treatment protocols trap patients in a lifelong regimen of drug management, obesity and escalating diabetes.” [The emphasis was added by me, of course.]

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