Dr. Lee on Foundational Nutrition
What’s the difference between Foundational nutrition and the current allopathic model of disease and pathology? Foundational nutrition looks to maintain health, by looking at the foundational issues of function. Then, we use a nutritional approach with diet, lifestyle and whole food supplementation as an intervention.
So what does that mean? Foundational nutrition focuses on looking for the root of what causes the body chemistry to be out of balance in the first place. Students who just graduated from medical school would probably describe what they do as identifying the disease and treating it with the proper medications. They understand there could be side effects, but that is just a calculated risk, and they’re taught “the end justifies the risk.”
Doctors from a Metabolic Medicine background often describe what they do as looking at how the body systems are malfunctioning from a physiological and biochemistry perspective. Their approach is still disease and treatment-oriented, because it focuses on how to force the body systems in the “right” direction.
Still others label themselves as Functional Medicine doctors, saying their emphasis is on function (or lack of function) which creates the physiology and biochemistry problem. They believe they’re more scientifically-based in their treatment because of their narrow focus of function and protocol.
So why did Dr. Lee and the pioneers in nutrition think of themselves as foundational practitioners? Because, as Dr. Lee said “you can’t build a strong house without a strong foundation, function does not work unless the foundation is properly laid in the first place”. You can’t have function in the metabolic systems if you don’t support the foundations and true support doesn’t come from a protocol but with the understanding of the foundations!
Dr. Lee and his friends understood that foundational issues started with digestion, sugar handling (liver, pancreas and adrenal function), and liver biliary function. Without those in balance, function doesn’t happen. Understanding how foundational issues contribute to the root cause, triggering a lack of function, is what causes the metabolic systems to malfunction in the first place, and that is the key.
For example, Dr. Lee created Betafood and A-F Betafood using beet greens and beets to thin the bile, helping the liver dispose of toxins while also helping to activate protein and fatty acid metabolism, which is a key component of proper digestion.
In 1937, Dr. Royal Lee developed the Endocardiograph which looked at heart function, not from the allopathic model of disease, but from the foundational model of nutritional balance. One of the first things that he found is that 1 teaspoon of sugar would upset the body chemistry for up to 72 hours, interfering with vitamins B, E and calcium metabolism, ultimately interfering with digestion, sugar handling and liver biliary functions. Today, the Acoustic Cardiograph and the new HSR can also monitor foundational issues related to function, not disease.
Later, Dr. Melvin Page discovered the optimal calcium phosphorus ratio of 2.5, noting that certain foods upset the body chemistry and created the Page Food Plan. Using over 3,600 case studies, Dr. Page could see how certain foods affected the calcium phosphorus ratio.
Dr. Page confirmed the same findings as Dr. Lee; refined carbohydrates interfered with function, lowered hydrochloric acid production in the stomach, and interfered with liver and gallbladder function, causing a slow degeneration of the body.
The treacherous part is most of the public is totally unaware. We don’t realize that our body requires only about 1/6 of the liver’s capacity to function. That’s why we don’t notice the slow deterioration.
We recommend the Page Food Plan because it encourages you to eat unlimited amounts of green leafy vegetables that are rich in vitamins and minerals just like Dr. Lee recommended. These foods tend to stimulate protein and fatty acid metabolism, keep your blood sugar balanced and help you detoxify.
The Page Food Plan allows you to eat meat, fish and fowl in limited quantities, and the other foods like starchy vegetables, legumes and fruit in very limited quantities.
Your next question on diet might be why so many celebrities are promoting a plant-based diet, recommended by their medical doctors. The reason why a plant-based diet works well is that most of us have eaten too many processed foods over time and our bodies are overloaded with toxins.
A plant-based diet, full of green leafy vegetables (like the Page Food Plan) is a detoxification diet. In other words, it helps you cleanse the toxins and waste that you’ve accumulated in the body systems. A plant-based diet is probably one of the best places to get started, but ultimately you need healthy, clean natural fats and proteins to do their magic, just in a limited quantity.
What does this all mean? Dr. Lee and Dr. Page, as well as many of the other nutritional pioneers, believed that without the proper nutrition and its therapeutic value, you couldn’t trigger function to bring the body systems back into balance.
In the 1930s, Dr. Weston Price traveled throughout the world studying primitive people’s diet and its impact on tooth decay as the first signs of the body’s degeneration. He found that when primitive people started eating processed foods, physical degeneration and disease was the outcome.
You might even be surprised to know that Dr. Price’s research was required reading in most every dental and medical school in this country throughout the 1940s and early 50s.
So let’s look at today’s reality. The average person ate 222.2 pounds of red meat and poultry in 2019, and 163 pounds of grain and corn flour in 2018, according to the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA). The consumption of grains that are genetically engineered, plus the consumption of bad fats and oils has risen at a dramatic rate today, surpassing 2004 record. This appears to be stimulated by the government’s US food pyramid which has encouraged our major diet changes since the 90s.
What has it gotten us? Today, depending on the statistics you look at, we now consume as much as 140 pounds of mostly processed sugar a year, where primitive man ate less than 1 pound of natural sugar per year, and only consumed small quantities of game being a hunter-gatherer. We consumed 163 pounds of grain and corn flour in 2018, that is not only genetically engineered, but the starch that’s in the grains turns to sugar when it’s heated.
Eating foods loaded in bad fats and oils, plus sugar and flour in the quantities we’re consuming today is a recent phenomenon, increasing the amount of harmful LDL cholesterol and reducing the amount of beneficial HDL cholesterol. This creates inflammation, linked to heart disease, stroke, diabetes, and other chronic conditions.
Even small amounts of bad fats and oils can bring harm to our health, with as little as 2% of calorie intake from trans-fat consumed on a daily basis increasing the risk of heart disease by 23%. Due to the Standard American Diet, more people in this country are overweight and obese than ever before in our history. We can see the effects on our overall health, making us susceptible to today’s degenerative diseases and a pandemic like the coronavirus.
All of these things contribute to our systems being overloaded, and we don’t digest our food like we should, causing our endocrine systems to be out of balance. Our liver and gallbladder are highly congested or toxic, so our body systems aren’t allowed to rebalance. This is why Dr. Lee and Dr. Page were so focused on supporting the foundations, which is the key to function.
As Dr. Lee said “You can’t build health on a faulty foundation”. So, supporting optimal digestion, sugar handling, and liver biliary function this is the basic foundation for your health and it all starts with your diet and lifestyle.