Guest Post by Mark Hyman, MD
What if you could cure all your health problems and lose 10 pounds in just 7 days?
That's an amazing claim, hard to believe for sure, but I have seen this miracle so many times in my practice (and now from all the people who have posted on my website who followed my ideas) that even I am starting to believe it!
My true goal is to help people feel better. Period.
Because I once was seriously ill with chronic fatigue syndrome, I know what it's like to wake up every morning feeling like you can't go on or to have a thousand and one other minor complaints that lower your capacity to enjoy life.
Now, of course, with more serious illness, it may take more than one week to find the cause and the cure (although by using the systems of UltraWellness and functional medicine, it is possible for so many millions with chronic illness to get better over time).
Functional medicine is medicine by cause not symptom. The ONLY way to truly heal chronic disease and address weight problems and disease is to get to the ROOT of the problem, to find the cause, and then get rid of it and help the body heal.
And two of the major factors that make people sick and fat are being toxic and being inflamed.
So, the secret of the 7 days is to very quickly stop the things that make you toxic and inflamed (sugar, caffeine, alcohol, junk food, processed foods, etc.) and do things that help you detoxify and cool off inflammation (eat whole real foods, stop all potential food allergens, clean out your bowels, deeply relax, and more).
That's when miracles can occur.
The scientific research supporting the role of inflammation and toxins in illness is overwhelming, but most doctors don't know how to help their patients deal with it.
Think of it as an experiment and try to prove it to yourself. Don't believe me.
I was trained in conventional medicine, practiced it for 10 years, and helped many people using the tools I was trained in—namely, medications and surgery.
While I worked in the emergency room, those tools worked amazingly well, bringing people back from the brink of death and relieving suffering.
But I realized that I wasn't helping the tens and tens of millions of Americans (125 million to be exact) who suffer from some type of chronic illness. And that doesn't include the millions who just don't feel well.
In fact, I now believe that most people walk around just accepting feeling mediocre—tired, achy, brain fog, memory problems, depression, headaches, congestion, allergies, digestive problems, joint pains, PMS, skin problems—things that may not even be a disease, yet rob them of the possibility of feeling great.
Who can say they are fully alive, full of energy, and able to greet the day with joy and enthusiasm?
How many of us can really do that?
Well, I know this is possible for most people. And the sad thing is that most people don't know why they feel less than fully alive and healthy and don't connect it to their behavior or habits.
The key to creating health is figuring out the cause of the problem and then providing the right conditions for the body and soul to thrive.
It isn't taking another medication!
Over the last 20 years of practicing at Canyon Ranch, founding The UltraWellness Center in Lenox, MA, and working with dozens of other leaders in the emerging field of functional and systems medicine, I have found the few simple things that make the most difference for the most people.
That is why I write the books I write. But I was overwhelmed by how the lives of people who never even saw me as a patient were changed. Here is an email someone sent to me after trying the simple things I recommend for getting to the root of weight and health problems.
Through reading and following the eating plan in your book, I have discovered I am gluten intolerant. Six weeks after starting your plan, I had lost not only 13 pounds but also, the all-over bloated feeling, excess gas, stomach discomfort, and thickening around the middle that I was experiencing. The puffiness and dark circles under my eyes are gone, and I am no longer depressed.
I feel terrific, which is my motivation for staying with the plan (including 45 to 60 minutes a day of strength training and yoga). I have read the comments of others, and like many of them, I no longer enjoy foods that are bad for me and crave the foods that are good for me.
Unfortunately, feeling terrific is not enough motivation for some people. And I am amazed and even saddened that there are so many other people out there with a defeatist attitude. Many of my friends told me the discomforts I was experiencing were a normal part of aging and that I needed to learn to accept it.
Wow, were they ever wrong!! Your book has shown me caring for my physical self is essential, especially as I age. I am 48, and thanks to your book, I am not getting older, I'm getting better, and growing old gracefully is not an option but a cop out.
PS. The only thing I am missing now is conversing with someone I can relate to.
When I read these stories, I realized that I could offer what I have been giving to my patients one on one to help them feel great very quickly and lose weight immediately without compromising my true goal of helping people get to the root of their health and weight problems.
And it occurred to me that what I do for nearly every patient who comes to see me is to give them a chance to see just how sick they have been and how powerful making a few simple changes can be in just one week.
Once they see by directly feeling how their food choices and their behaviors make them sick—and they experience a taste of UltraWellness—then, they are empowered to make changes that can help them feel great and lose weight for the long term.
The most important things to address at the outset for weight loss and creating UltraWellness are inflammation and toxicity. These are among the two most important causes of chronic disease and obesity.
So, I put together a simple program called The UltraSimple Diet Challenge, including all the tricks and tools I have used successfully with thousands of patients for so many years.
In one short week, I teach them how to detoxify and to cool off chronic inflammation.
That is The UltraSimple Diet.
I asked many of you in my online community to try it and give me feedback. I was overwhelmed by the response. We had thousands respond but could only accept about 150 into the testing.
Even though I know what I recommend is effective, I was very surprised by the power of the program in people who I had never even met or for whom I created a customized plan. It had dramatic effects.
We had 131 people complete the program. We asked people to track their medical symptoms—things like headaches, fatigue, digestive problems, congestion, joint pain, depression, and more.
In just one week, they had an average of 51.15% reduction in their symptoms. And they lost an average of 5.53 pounds (and many lost over 10lbs) and lost an average of 1.37 inches from their waist and 0.94 inches from their hips!
To me, the weight loss is nice, but it's not the main objective (it's a nice side effect and happens automatically if you deal with the underlying roots or causes of illness).
The real benefit is the possibility of experiencing UltraWellness, a state of deep and true health and vitality. And it happens so quickly. You don't need to believe me—just try it for one week. Join me for a webinar on May 29 to learn about how you can join The UltraSimple Diet Challenge that starts in just a few short weeks. It's only seven days—anyone can do it!
And tell your friends. Pass this along.
I believe that if enough people really get to experience the difference in their health created by one week on The UltraSimple Diet Challenge, it will change them forever. It could create a cultural shift that may be able to fight the overwhelming power of the food and pharmaceutical industry, which controls our health.
Empower yourself, transform healthcare!
To read Part I of this two-part blog please click here.
Please leave your thoughts by adding a comment below—but remember, we can't offer personal medical advice online, so be sure to limit your comments to those about taking back our health!
To your good health,
Mark Hyman, MD
Mark Hyman, MD
Dr. Hyman is dedicated to identifying and addressing the root causes of chronic illness through a groundbreaking whole-systems medicine approach called Functional Medicine. He is a family physician, a four-time New York Times bestselling author, and an international leader in his field.