Dr. Barnard's Blog

The Physicians Committee

ICNM Recap: Sugar, Fat, and Weight Loss

August 4, 2017   Dr. Neal Barnard   weight loss, diabetes


ICNM Recap: Sugar, Fat, and Weight Loss

Sugar isn’t a health food, even when it comes from Dr. Pepper. But removing meat and dairy products from your diet is also essential when it comes to weight loss and fighting heart disease, diabetes, and America’s other diet-related disease epidemics. At last week’s International Conference on Nutrition in Medicine (ICNM), I explained how a plant-based diet—fruits, vegetables, grains, and legumes—is the best bet for staying healthy. Take a look:

Read my interview in the Washingtonian about the controversy surrounding What the Health, a new documentary that challenges the standard American diet.

What the Health! NFL’s Trent Williams Goes Vegan!

July 21, 2017   Dr. Neal Barnard  


Trent Williams goes vegan

Congrats to NFL player Trent Williams who is going vegan to up his game for the 2017 football season! What inspired him? The new documentary What the Health, which I’m glad to be part of!

“I’m bettering my life,” Williams told the Washington Post about his decision to give up animal products. Many athletes are making the same decision, using a completely vegan diet to improve their performance, cut recovery times, and maximize their overall health.

Trent Williams goes vegan

And Williams is not the only Washington athlete to be inspired by What the Health. The Post reports “fellow 300-pound offensive linemen Arie Kouandjio and Isaiah Williams saw the documentary soon after and adjusted their eating habits, Kouandjio going full vegan and Williams committing to a pescatarian diet.”

I’m sure Isaiah will be inspired to go vegan soon! The good news is the team is right here in Washington, D.C., and our experts at the Physicians Committee’s headquarters and the Barnard Medical Center are glad to offer support!

If you’re an athlete interested in improving your performance with a plant-based diet, check out our Food Power for Athletes page.

Does Your Doctor Discuss Nutrition with You?

June 21, 2017   Dr. Neal Barnard   other


heart health

Did you know that 80 percent of heart attacks could be prevented if we overhauled our diets and lifestyle?

Studies show that people who follow a plant-based diet based on fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and legumes have lower blood pressure, lower cholesterol levels, and the lowest rates of heart disease. One study showed that 81 percent of patients with heart disease who switched to a plant-based diet experienced fewer symptoms and complications, while nearly a quarter reversed the disease entirely.

To put it in perspective, adopting a healthy lifestyle could prevent up to 80 percent of heart attacks, while statins—the most commonly prescribed cholesterol lowering drug—prevent up to 36 percent.

But cardiologists—the doctors tasked with treating, managing, and protecting us from America’s No. 1 killer—probably won’t tell you that and might not even know it themselves.

According to a new study, 9 in 10 surveyed cardiologists reported that they received little to no nutrition education during their cardiology fellowship training.

On top of that, the majority of cardiologists have very little time with their patients to discuss lifesaving nutrition interventions.

So what can we do? To truly begin tackling heart disease and the other lifestyle-related diseases that now account for 7 in 10 U.S. deaths, we have to start prioritizing prevention. It’s time for doctors to start leading the way in acknowledging the underlying causes of food-related illnesses. The Physicians Committee offers free resources for establishing nutrition education curriculum in medical schools, continuing medical education courses for current doctors, and hosts the International Conference on Nutrition in Medicine each year for health care providers.

American Medical Association Passes Healthy Food Resolutions

June 15, 2017   Dr. Neal Barnard   hospital food


Patients in hospitals and economically disadvantaged people need greater access to healthy foods. The American Medical Association agrees and just passed two important nutrition resolutions that will make this possible. One encourages hospitals to add more plant-based options and remove processed meats. The other calls on the federal government to improve the healthfulness of the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program, formerly known as Food Stamps. Below, I explain why it’s so important that the AMA is calling for more healthy foods and less junk food:


Worried About the Paris Climate Accord? Eat a Plant-Based Diet

June 1, 2017   Dr. Neal Barnard   climate change


Worried About the Paris Climate Accord?

The United States pulled out of the Paris Climate Accord today. But we can continue to help fight climate change and protect the environment in other ways, including eating a plant-based diet. Did you know that eating beans instead of beef is beneficial for the environment? Or that it takes 660 gallons to make one single burger?

Share these five graphics to let the world know that no matter what happens with the #ParisAgreement, you are committed to fighting climate change with a plant-based diet.












Connect with Dr. Barnard



Stay Connected

Receive action alerts, breaking medical news, e-newsletters, and special offers via e-mail. Sign up >