Updated: Sep 11, 2019
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There are a vastly growing number of doctors and medical professionals who openly express their confidence in a plant-based (vegan) diet and its health benefits. Here we have looked into a few doctors who are leading the way and sharing pioneering research to positively change (and even save) the lives of many!
Dr Neal D. Barnard - Reversing type 2 diabetes, prevention over pills.
Qualifications: MD (Doctor of Medicine), President of the Physicians Committee, Adjunct Associate Professor of Medicine at the George Washington University School of Medicine.
Speciality: Dr Barnard's philosophy has become 'prevention over pills'. A philosophy founded from many years of leading scientific studies on chronic pain, obesity and diabetes. The correlation he has seen as a leader of studies, and as an MD, have led to a strong belief in the importance of a healthy plant-based diet. His most well known publication was a cutting edge clinical study comparing the treatment of type 2 diabetes using a low-fat vegan diet to a standard 'diabetes diet', in which a low-fat vegan diet came out on top.
He now promotes plant-based health programs specifically for those with type 2 diabetes as well as for general good health and prevention of disease.
Dr T. Colin Campbell- The truth about dairy, cancer and diet.
Qualifications: PhD in Nutrition and Biochemistry, member of The National Academy of Sciences Committee on Diet Nutrition & Cancers, Professor at Cornell University, Senior Science Advisor at World Cancer Research.
Speciality: Dr Campbell is best known for his research and findings showing how closely related diet and cancers are. His nation wide survey in china which inspired his book, The China Study, showed a significant correlation between increase in cancer risk and animal protein consumption. He has authored over 300 research papers and aims to end confusion over diet and health.
"The findings from The China Study indicate that the lower the percentage of animal protein consumed, the greater the health benefits."
Fun fact: Campbell grew up on a dairy farm and initially started his research to prove dairy milk to be a health-promoting food. However, he found the opposite of this so, staying true to his integrity, changed his word to start promoting a plant-based diet.
Dr Caldwell Esselsytn - Heart disease, lifestyle as medicine.
Qualifications: MD (Doctor of Medicine), Olympic Gold Medalist in Rowing, Surgeon at Cleveland Clinic, Fellow of the American College of Cardiology, American College of Lifestyle Medicine 2016 Lifetime Achievement Award.
Speciality: Esselsytn is best known for his breakthrough, long-term nutritional research on preventing and reversing coronary artery (heart) disease in severely ill patients. He ran a clinical trial with 24 patients who were too sick to receive surgery for their heart disease. 5 subjects were told, by their cardiologist (heart doctors), that they would not live beyond a year. He put these subjects on a whole-food plant-based diet and in the 12 years of study, only one minor heart problem occurred and all 5 of those who were given just one year to live survived another 20 years! This study was repeated later with 198 patients, he achieved similar results with a success rate of 99.4% of participants who stuck to the diet having no further complications. In contrast, 62% of those who gave up the vegan diet experienced further adverse events. We think these statistics are incredible and a great incentive to focus on what we are eating!
Dr Will Bulsiewicz- Gut microbiome, restoring health through good gut bacteria.
Qualifications: MD (Doctor of Medicine), Master of Science in Clinical Investigation (MSCI), Certificate in Nutrition from Cornell University, Board-certified in both Internal Medicine and Gastroenterology. Received the highest clinical award at UNC and was Chief Gastroenterology Fellow.
Speciality: Dr Bulsiewicz, otherwise known as Dr B, is well known for his work specialising in restoring good gut health through taking care of the gut microbiome (good gut bacteria). His research led him to supporting and implementing a plant-based diet upon discovering the importance of including a variety of plant foods and the disease reducing effects that they have. He also explains his reasons for completely abstaining from animal products; as research is showing that animal proteins have a carcinogenic (disease causing) effect, they produce bad bacteria in the gut which allow disease to thrive.
Fun Fact: Much like at Holistic Vegan Coaching, Dr B emphasises the importance of a variety of plant foods. Different plant foods all have unique properties and encourage growth of particular good gut bacterias. We encourage you to try new vegetables and fruits, rotate your grains and try to incorporate an abundance of different beans and legumes.
For more advice and tips on a well balanced plant-based diet, check out our Vegan Health & Self-Empowerment Guide
Dr Danielle Belardo- Helping other doctors go vegan, advocate for plan-based lifestyle for general health & heart health.
Qualifications: MD (doctor of medicine) Cardiology Fellow, American Board of Internal Medicine, Board Certified Physician.
Speciality: Belardo provides cardiovascular (heart health) care with an emphasis on science-based nutrition, this happens to be a plant-based, aka vegan, diet. She is now hosting vegan transition programs for other doctors and is getting an outstanding amount of interest. Her first program had over 500 responses from doctors keen to make the switch to plant-based. Clearly the news is spreading!
"We have no data to show us that we need animal products and that animal products help us. We only have data to show us that animal products can hurt us and are associated with more chronic disease, more hypertension, more diabetes, more coronary artery disease, and more cancer." - Dr Danielle Belardo
Please share this article with anyone who you think may benefit from a plant-based diet! We hope to encourage good health and longevity in as many wonderful humans as possible!
Peace, love and bean burritos
Laura Louise, Health Coach
Certified Vegan Nutrition Consultant
Founder of Holistic Vegan Coaching
I developed a passion for plant-based health after overcoming severe digestive issues, anxiety and fatigue by changing my own diet.
This give me a passion for researching pioneering medical and nutritional studies and a desire to help others! I take a holistic approach to health and incorporate mindfulness, psychology and other vital aspects that create a well-rounded, healthy lifestyle and assist in making eating plant-based easy and enjoyable!