When Brooke Goldner, MD, was 16 years old, she was told by her doctors that she probably had about six months to live. Her lupus, a chronic autoimmune condition that commonly attacks joints and skin, had gone after her kidneys, and it didn't look like they (and she) could be saved.
Thankfully, the weekly chemotherapy worked well enough to stomp on her immune system, and it gave her kidneys and the rest of her a break and allowed her to grow up and have a fairly normal life.
Goldner decided that however short her time on this planet, she wanted to make it count. She excelled at school, entered med school despite warnings that the stressful lifestyle could trigger debilitating relapses. Despite these health setbacks occurring, she became a doctor and began her intern year of residency hoping to keep her lupus at bay.
Through a series of events worthy of a fortune cookie, a romance novel and a Hallmark Channel movie rolled into one, Dr. Goldner married a celebrity fitness trainer, Thomas Tadlock. As she said during our conversation, “I thought I would wear a white coat, but never a white dress.”
In her desire to “look hot” at the wedding, Dr. Goldner followed her fiancé's nutritional protocol, leaving out the free-range organic meat he was then recommending since she was a lacto-ovo-vegetarian.
Tadlock's rules eliminated dairy and eggs, however, so that left whole plant foods exclusively.
And within a couple of days, Dr. Goldner realized that this “hyper-nourishing diet” was doing something for her body than no medical intervention could touch: it was eliminating her lupus. Not managing. Not keeping in remission. But making it go away.
I don't want to spoil the rest of the story for you, since it's so much more powerful in Dr. Goldner's own words.
- the mechanisms of autoimmune disease
- her mother's insistence that she plan her life rather than believe the medical death sentence
- “your purpose is greater than this challenge”
- suffering mini strokes in med school
- using gratitude as a healing tool
- telling her boyfriend about her lupus – and why they couldn't get married (and his amazing reply)
- the medical assumption that nutrition has nothing to do with disease
- the difference between Dr. Goldner's healing protocol and other variations of the whole food, plant-based diet
- the secret: high doses of greens, omega-3 fatty acids, and water
- deciding to get pregnant – and dealing with medical hysteria about her decision
- the interplay of genetics and lifestyle
- outdated information from the Lupus Foundation: “if you ever test negative, then you never had lupus in the first place”
- the smoothie controversy in the plant-based world
- interested in evidence, not opinions
- the limitations of the calorie model of weight management
- “you can't assess the value of your house by how hot it burns”
- healing the metabolism allows the metabolism to heal the body
- is a high-raw vegan diet sustainable?
- adding cooked dinners
- Dr. Goldner's online medical practice, and group programs
- adding non-healthy foods (“your body can handle a paper cut if you're healthy”)
- and much more…