Dr. Mark Cucuzella on “The Biggest Mistake in Human History”


Manage episode 240164633 series 2421902
By Brad Kearns. Discovered by Player FM and our community — copyright is owned by the publisher, not Player FM, and audio is streamed directly from their servers. Hit the Subscribe button to track updates in Player FM, or paste the feed URL into other podcast apps.

The biggest mistake in human history!? What is he talking about? We will get to that, and more in this very thoughtful show with Dr. Mark, pioneering physician and legendary endurance runner.

Dr. Markhas been quietly changing the world with his devoted efforts to get people healthy, both inside the medical system as a physician and also a fitness enthusiast who conducts running clinics and opened the first ever barefoot-focused running store in the USA. He is a highly accomplished runner, with an absolutely astonishing and perhaps unrivaled streak of running a sub-3-hour marathon 30 years in a row. Mark recently wrote a book to convey his unique and broad-based health and fitness message, titled Run For Your Life.

As a cutting edge thought leader in ancestral health, you could say that Mark hails from an unlikely home state of West Virginia. This state just earned the dubious distinction of being the fattest state in America according to the CDC. Alas, they are also the most honest citizens, as they also admitted to their high obesity rates in the “self-reported obesity rates” graph that accompanies the official CDC graph.

This show gets into all kinds of juicy topics, and Dr. Mark pulls no punches. He observes that the creation and promotion of the USDA Food Pyramid has been “the biggest mistake in human history,” one that has led to millions of deaths, not only in America, but in all the other western nations that we export our culture to. Dr. Mark believes that the hyperinsulinemia (chronically excessive insulin production) that results from eating by the food pyramid is now the “biggest crisis in humanity” and everyone should stay away from foods that he refers to as “white death.” Indeed, as Dr. Doug McGuff observed in his book, Primal Prescription, if type 2 diabetes continues at today’s accelerated rate, the ensuing expensive long-term care for this condition is on track to bankrupt the US Treasury by the year 2060.

This is serious stuff that we seem to overlook, buried under the billions of dollars of marketing efforts by processed food manufacturers. American dietary guidelines are changing (at a snail’s pace it seems, but at least it’s still happening) but Dr. Mark rightfully believes that ridding the patient of the guilt they carry over their weight is key. They need to know it’s not their fault if they are obese or have a metabolic disorder, as the truth is, there are so many factors that contribute to this. Dr. Mark mentions a great Huffington Post article, “Everything You Know About Obesity Is Wrong” and uses the analogy of a classroom of kids to illustrate society’s view of obesity and fat shaming: “If one kid out of a class of 30 is failing, then it’s maybe about that kid, but when 2/3 are failing, it’s not about the kid – it’s about something else.” As he points out, “it’s inhumane” for people to pay for diet programs where they’re severely restricting calories to starvation level, because they spend all this money only to gain it all back, and find themselves again in the same place – shouldering the blame for something that they don’t even know isn’t their fault. Dr. Mark’s counter solution to this problem is empowering people by giving them the knowledge they need to truly understand that their health is in their hands. His patients have experienced enormous success because they have been given the tools they need to make lifestyle changes that have lasting, long-term effects. Enjoy this show as Dr. Mark fuses sharp intellect and curiosity with deep empathy for his patients, and illuminates many integral, underlying issues central to our food system that could be holding you back from thriving and functioning at peak performance.


Brad introduces his guest who is actively changing the backwards medical community where he lives in West Virginia, the most obese state. [03:44]

The idea that eating fat causes you to get fat and causes heart disease has been refuted. It is widely accepted that sugar is the problem. [07:06]

Medical schools are finally paying attention to diet. [09:40]

Some believe that you should have a plant-based diet. [12:44]

People don’t understand about fruits. If you want to build up body fat, eat fruit. [16:27]

What used to be viewed as the good diet for triathletes has to be refuted. [21:47]

Dr. Mark runs sub three-hour marathon. [31:18]

The US Dept. of Agriculture’s food pyramid could be the biggest mistake in human history. [33:05]

If your HDL is high it is a predictor of cardiovascular disease. [38:38]

Fat in the midsection is a warning. [44:36]

Fatty livers have now been seen in kids. [48:47]

Anything that involves calorie restriction to starvation levels, is unhealthy. [55:41]

US dietary guidelines are slowly changing. [59:50]

If the healthcare provider can assure the patient it is not their fault, it is a big step forward. [01:01:24]

“There is more money spent in the USA on medical care and consumer products relating to weight loss than on national defense.” [01:04:56]

Why isn’t there more talk about the blood test for insulin? [01:05:58]

Other societies do not have sugar sweetened drinks and garbage and junk food. [01:10:39]

Whether the change is slow or cold turkey, it is up to the patient how they want to improve the health. [01:13:49]

124 episodes