Dr Klaper Discusses Optimal Diet And Natural Rheumatoid Arthritis Treatment
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Disclaimer – This podcast does not constitute medical advice. All changes surrounding medications, diet, and exercise, should be made in consultation with a professional, who can assess your unique health circumstances.
Clint: Welcome back to the Paddison podcast. I am absolutely pumped and excited for this episode. We have someone who is a celebrated doctor in the world of plant-based nutrition. He’s actually the doctor for several of the clients that I have within the Paddison program community forum. They’ve described him as the best doctor they have ever had. He understands all aspects of leaky gut and molecular mimicry and how the body responds to foods from an autoimmune point of view, but also from all other aspects, other diseases, and so we would like to welcome Dr. Klaper to the call. How are you Dr. Klaper?
Dr. Klaper: I’m just fine, Clint. I’m just delighted to be speaking with you for all the good work that you’ve done and to be able to reach all the people in your wonderful continent there. I have a warm spot in my heart for all things Australian, so it’s great to be able to be on your program today.
Clint: Well, thank you and actually we’ve got a worldwide audience. A lot of our clients, a lot of listeners on the podcast, are all throughout America and Europe, so we’re talking to everyone right now.
Dr. Klaper: Even better, welcome everyone.
Clint: Absolutely. Now, what I’d like to do is explain a little bit on the benefits of plant-based nutrition first of all, because a lot of our listeners have heard a lot about the benefits of plant-based nutrition with regards to rheumatoid arthritis and autoimmune conditions. But you’ve been a practicing doctor for many years and you’ve seen the benefits across all kinds of various ailments, so perhaps you’d like to give us an overview of the benefits of plant-based nutrition and how it came about that you feel that this is the way forward for people for their health.
Dr. Klaper: Well, thank you, I am honored that you would ask that. A bit of a longish story, but will break it up into suitable morsels that people could hopefully digest well, so to speak. A little rim shot there. So where do we start? Well we start, in my case, 43 years ago when I graduated medical school and I was going to go out and cure the world. I had the best that modern medicine and its knowledge had to offer and I was ready to do battle with all these classic foes of high blood pressure and diabetes and clogged arteries and asthma and rheumatoid arthritis. And all these diseases that have plagued mankind not only for centuries, but seem to be increasing in the last part of the last century. And we were very alarmed by how much more high blood pressure is rampant and the explosion in type II diabetes. What’s going on? What’s going on?
And I was very frustrated during the first 10 years of my medical career. I was spending my time in emergency rooms, operating rooms, doing acute care medicine, and I would have an endless stream of patients who had high blood pressure, diabetes, and inflammatory joint disease and asthma, etc. And when I went to see what the cause of this condition was, I would open up my big thick medical textbook, which have now turned into apps on my iPhone, and when I looked for the cause of the disease, I would run into these two words that seem to stop all further intellectual consideration. Etiology unknown. We don’t know the cause of obesity. We don’t know the cause of type II diabetes. We don’t know the cause of high blood pressure. With the implication being that the smart scientists in the white coated Harvard and NIH, they’re working real hard and when they finally crack the code they’ll tell us what it is, and they’ll dispense that magical pill that will make the diabetes go away and make the rheumatoid arthritis disappear.
Well after 42 years of medicine now it’s clear those pills aren’t soon coming, at least in the form that was suggested to us. But as my colleagues are still floundering around and treating symptoms, something has become very evident to me in the last 30 years and that is when I look at how my patients have changed, how much more obese they’ve become. How much more inflamed they’ve become. How much the clogged arteries and diabetes are appearing at an earlier age. We’re seeing teenagers with adult onset diabetes. And I ask, “What’s happening? What’s the cause?” It’s become very evident as we will, I hope, explore in our interview here that instead of being some subtle misreading of gene number 24 on chromosome 18 and some strange genetic problem, it’s much more banal than that, it’s hiding in plain sight, the cause of these diseases, the majority cause at least. And that is, well it can be summarized in three words instead of looking for the subtle, subtle misread in your genes there. Three simple words, “It’s the food.” It’s what people are eating. The Western diet has become toxic in recent years. It used to be made of whole foods, largely plant foods. Meats and dairy products were consumed in very modest amounts. They were very expensive, people couldn’t afford a lot of it, and it was very relatively pure and unadulterated.
Well time, progress, science, and money have all had their pernicious effects in recent decades and the food stream has now become this overly processed gruel of animal flesh and dairy products laced with hydrogenated oils, concentrated sugars, a host of chemicals, preservatives, flavorings, stabilizers, and anti-microbial substances, chlorinated drinking water, phosphoric acid in cola drinks, and very importantly the antibiotics that are fed to the cattle and that wind up in the meat and in the dairy products. This toxic gruel floods through our system every five hours. Bacon and eggs for breakfast, cheeseburgers for lunch, chicken for dinner. There’s a piece of adulterated animal muscle in the middle of every single meal and accompanied by this gruel of fats and sugars that are absolutely destructive and disruptive to the natural balance in our body.
It flows through our tissues causing its own particular mischief, which we’ll talk about, but very importantly the intestinal bacteria that live in our gut that wasn’t even mentioned hardly at all in my medical training and it turns out to be extremely important in maintaining a healthy gut system and healthy immune system, a healthy blood chemistry. And we knock it down three times a day, again with this mixture of anti-microbial substances and we kill off the good beneficial organisms. We select out the roughest toughest antibiotics resistant bacteria and microbes and then we feed them with this syrup of soft drinks and baked goods and ,and we wind up causing these overgrowth of these pathogenic organisms that injure the gut lining and allow food proteins and the breakdown products of bacteria to leak out into our bloodstream and flow through tissues all over the body and they set off injurious reactions.
They injure the wall of the arteries, which sets off the atherosclerotic plaque formation, but it also, depending on the person’s genetics, those predisposed as these pathogenic molecules flow through the bronchial membranes, and they’ll set off asthma. In other people, they flow through the skin and they set off psoriasis and eczema and various forms of dermatitis. In some people, it flows through their joint membranes and sets of all sorts of inflammation that would get all sorts of exotic names, from psoriatic arthritis, rheumatoid arthritis, etc. And where this is accepted as normal, “It’s just part of aging, everybody gets fat when they get older, everybody gets clogged arteries, everybody goes diabetic.” No, they don’t. That’s not normal aging. We’re supposed to get to our 90s and 110s in lean, healthy bodies with wide open arteries and strong muscles and clear minds. And whether you wind up in that situation or in a body that’s all clogged up in disease, it comes down to those same three words, it’s the food. It’s what you’re choosing to run through your body on a daily basis, day after day, week after week, month after month. That is the most powerful determinant of health or disease and the one we have almost complete control over.
So I have certainly had my focus diverted or focused upon what my patients are eating and for various reasons, which we can talk about, it’s becoming very evident that whole plant foods have so many good things in them. There’s a list of helpful phytochemicals that can run down your arm that do all these wonderful properties of quenching free radicals, and strengthening your immune system, and improving gut integrity and healing us in so many ways, versus animal proteins and their constituents, which now we see feeds diseases in so many ways that I’ve certainly gone plant-based. Well that was 30 years ago, I adopted a plant-based diet.
I saw the change in my own body. I was a resident in anesthesiology in the operating room and day after day I was putting patients to sleep and watching surgeons open their chests and open up their coronary arteries and pull this yellow guck out of their arteries, atherosclerosis, and I realized my dad died of clogged arteries. I was going to be laying on that table with that striker saw going up my sternum and I didn’t want that. So I changed to a plant-based diet, a 20 -pound spare tire of fat melted off my waist. My blood pressure had been went 150/90, slid down to 110/70 and I felt great waking up in a nice lean light body. And for reasons that I wanted to get the violence out of my life, I didn’t want to pay for the death of the animals and the destruction of the planet that has now become evident, all the way around, all the lights were flashing for me personally and as a physician. “Plant-based nutrition is your best bet, Doctor, for your own health and for your patients.”
And as I counsel my patients to adopt a plant-based diet, I see these same wonderful changes in them. You’d get them on a really whole food, not an overly processed granola bar and orange juice diet. It’s got to be whole plant foods, but colorful salads and hearty vegetable soups and big plates of steamed green and yellow vegetables and fresh fruits. It’s magic. You see this transformation right in front of both our eyes, the patient and myself. High blood pressures go down, arteries open up, bowels start working well, inflamed joints settle down, psoriasis clears up. It’s a wonderful, wonderful thing to see. It’s the best pill going that those Harvard scientists will never come up with.
So it’s fun being a plant-based physician because my patients get healthier and that makes me one of the happiest doctors in the whole world. [inaudible [00:12:02] details. Go ahead.
Clint: Absolutely and your patients, I’m sure. Now some of your peers who support the same views that you do, like Dr. Caldwell Esselstyn and Neal Barnard, they work in the areas of heart disease and Type II diabetes respectively, at least the books that I’ve read of those published for those areas. They see tremendous and phenomenal results, like Dr. Esselstyn will say that you can become heart attack proof, like no human being ever needs to die of a heart attack ever. It’s a completely . . you have a choice in the matter.
Dr. Klaper: You do, it’s a self-induced disease. It’s a dietary-induced disease. As my colleague, Dr. John McDougall says, in some form it’s food poisoning. It’s food poisoning, right, not the classic form of bacteria and diarrhea, but he’s right, These diseases are a form of food poisoning. We’ve poisoned our food.
Clint: And that is with sympathy and respect to anyone listening who’s had family members lost through that disease, but those who are listening now have to think about their choices and think about whether or not they can influence those family members who are suffering from heart disease and say, “Look, you can make some choices. You can tremendously influence the likelihood of dying from a heart attack.” And also with the Type II diabetes, and correct me if I’m wrong, but almost all cases of Type II diabetes could be reversed. Is that fair to say?
Dr. Klaper: Oh, absolutely and again, I ran to the [inaudible [00:13:32] ideology unknown, strange disease. It’s not strange. When you flood your tissues with fat, especially including vegetable oils, but again the bacon and eggs, the cheeseburgers, the chicken, all this fat day after day, month after month, year after year, begins to ooze its way into the muscle cells and the insulin receptors on the surface of the muscle cells get clogged up with fat from the inside. It’s like putting chewing gum in the door lock. So the insulin can’t work and so you can’t move sugar from the bloodstream into your muscle cells to burn it, and so the sugar piles up in the blood and creates all sorts of problems.
Again, a low fat plant-based diet lets that fat in the muscle cells clear out, the muscles burn that fat for energy, and the insulin receptors open up. And something I was told never happens, happens all the time, diabetes goes away, Type II diabetes, because it was the food all along. It’s the food. And when I was told it doesn’t happen, it was an adage on the hospital wards, “Once on insolent, always on insulin. Nobody gets off insulin.” Well it ain’t necessarily so. Not only can you get someone off of insulin, you’ve got to get them off of insulin. These people who adopt healthy plant-based diet, if you don’t reduce or stop their insulin, you’re going to get a call that they passed out on the floor from low blood sugar and so we stop the insulin all the time. The same thing with high blood pressure pills. “Oh, they will take these pills the rest of their lives.” No, they don’t. In fact, not only can you get them off the pills, you better get them off because they’ll stand up and pass out from low blood pressure.
Clint: It’s funny that you should say that. If I could just jump in at that point, because people who follow the Paddison program, which is the program I created for the rheumatoid arthritis folks after my horrific experience for many years with that disease. Of course, it’s completely plant-based and low-fat corresponding with everything that you’re saying. I’ve watched people’s . . . people have reported their blood pressure problems disappearing. And, of course, entering in this as a non-doctor, I’ve learned these things happening as a side effect of the improvement of the rheumatoid arthritis, but the blood pressure drops from people who’ve been on blood pressure pills for years has just been hilarious.
Some people say, “I’ve been on these things for 10 years. Now I don’t need to take them anymore, my blood pressure is normal.” And luckily because I spent a lot of time studying Dr. John McDougall’s work, he had actually put some warnings in for his patients to say, “Look if you follow my . . .” You know, he has a plant-based diet of course as well, and he put warnings into say, “If if you follow this program, you got to be careful about your blood pressure if you’re on high blood pressure pills, because you may actually drive your blood pressure too low because the body heals itself so quickly from this condition that then you’re over medicated if you’re on blood pressure pills.”
Dr. Klaper: Oh, that’s absolutely true and people should tell their doctor, don’t mention plant-based, or their vegan, or anything like that. It makes their eyeballs go around like Las Vegas slot machines. It frightens them, the whole topic of nutrition. But just say, “I’ve adopted a healthier eating style, I’ll be losing weight, now would you follow me along see if my blood pressure goes down maybe we can start cutting down on some of these pills.” Just do that, but tip your doctor off that you’re going to be eating healthier and these pills are probably going to have to be reduced or eliminated and indeed that’s the safer way to play it.
And I really want to lay out a context for you how broad this is, that I have been recently giving lectures to medical audiences. I’ve stood in front of audiences of 300, 400 different physicians of every medical specialty and I’ve said, “Colleagues, please cure this. I don’t care if you are a surgeon, an internist, a cardiologist, an endocrinologist, a rheumatologist, a dermatologist, gastroenterologist, pediatrician. No matter what specialty you practice, no matter how you come at medicine from your particular viewpoint, when you open the door of your waiting room tomorrow morning, the vast majority of people sitting in your waiting room are there because they are sick from what they’ve been eating. And until you recognize this, until we recognize this, and acknowledge this openly and know what to tell our patients and counsel them to come to a plant-based diet, you’re going to be treating symptoms. And you will spend the rest of your medical career up at three in the morning in the emergency room dealing with bowel obstructions and GI bleeds and strokes and heart attacks wondering, ‘Gee, how did this happen?’ So indeed colleagues, it’s the food, it’s the food your patients are eating and probably what you’re eating, too, doctors.”
And this revolution is slowly, slowly starting to happen. It’s starting to permeate, because the public is becoming wiser and demanding this and the young medical students. We can’t tell the young medical students, “We don’t know the cause of clogged arteries.” They know, the cat’s way out of the bag on that one. So I do see there’s going to be a sea change happening, but we’ve got to keep working at it and the best thing people can do is set a good example. Don’t worry about what mom is eating or dad’s eating. You start by eating a healthy plant-based diet, let your example speak volumes. You get leaner and healthier and off your pills, believe me the message will be delivered. You don’t have to get into an argument, “You shouldn’t be doing this. You shouldn’t do this.” Do it yourself. Mahatma Gandhi said, “Example is not the best way to teach. Example is the only way to teach.” You do it yourself and watch what happens.
Clint: Well, let’s empower those people. We’ve already discussed the solution, which is a low fat plant-based diet. Now there are endless, countless books available to see how to eat in that format. Obviously anything by Dr. McDougall, obviously the Paddison program follows that exactly to a T, from a rheumatoid arthritis point of view, but there are low-fat plant-based cook books galore on Amazon, so it’s easy to do that part of it. But what about if family members say to them . . . well let’s just go through quickly, because the answers to this can be easily found elsewhere and I don’t want to consume your time on it too much. But what are some quick bullet point answers to “What about protein?”
Dr. Klaper: What about protein? How did I know that was going to be the word that came out of your lips there. Yes, absolutely. We’ve been so frightened about this topic that, “You’re not going to get enough protein. Not gonna get enough protein.” Well sure you are with a couple of caveats. First of all, just step back and realize that the biggest animals on the planet, elephants, buffaloes, giraffes, gorillas, grow to thousands of pounds of a mammalian muscle without ever eating cheeseburgers, and all the protein that these animals need are found in the plants, foods that they eat, the wild grains and grasses, legumes and vegetables. It’s in the whole foods. You can’t consume 1800, 2000 calories of whole plant food, whole grains, whole legumes, whole foods, whole vegetables, without getting an automatic 50, 60, 70 grams of high-grade protein. It’s in there.
Now once you start getting out, once the hand of man gets in there and he starts processing it and turn it into all sorts of cakes and powders and processed food, now that’s [inaudible [00:20:57] at that point. But if you’re eating whole plant food, glorious, as I said, salads and hearty soups and stews filled with lentils and beans and garden vegetables, big plates of steamed green and yellow vegetables, now you keep that going down your gullet two, three times a day, relax. You’re going to get two or three . . . you’re going to get all the protein that you need.
Clint: Is it fair to say that if you meet your energy requirements, or as people like to say, the calorie requirements each day by eating a diverse range of foods, that it’s virtually impossible not to get enough protein?
Dr. Klaper: Well said, sir, it took a non-physician to say what I [inaudible [00:21:37], but that’s exactly right.
Clint: What about, let’s talk calcium. People worry about calcium and yet it’s the number one selling supplement in the U.S., where they more eat more dairy products than anywhere else. So we’ve got a big issue there with regards to calcium, but what’s the truth on that?
Dr. Klaper: Oh my, it borders somewhere between sad, funny, pathetic, laughable, tragic, why. And here’s where I want to take a lot of my colleagues and shake them that, “Oh, if you don’t get enough calcium, your bones are going to fall apart.” Osteoporosis is not a disease of calcium deficiency. Let me say that again, osteoporosis is not a disease of calcium deficiency. That’s not what the disease is. As you said, people in Western countries eat more calcium than anyone else on planet earth, we have the worst osteoporosis. And not only is that on its face evident, but studies have shown that the countries that consume the most milk have the highest rate of bone fractures. Those countries where people take calcium pills, not only do not lower the risk of osteoporosis, they increase their risk of sudden death. Why? Because calcium is a dumb mineral. We think, “Oh, it’s gonna go make my bones stronger.” No, it doesn’t. It calcifies tissues throughout the body It calcifies your artery walls, it calcifies your tendons, your ligaments, the bursa in your joints. And it increases the risk of dying of a heart attack from calcified arteries by 30% and for a disease that you don’t even have.
The calcium requirements are much more modest, 500, 600 milligrams at the most is all anybody needs, probably 300 to 400 milligrams is really all that your bones really need. And that’s easily obtainable from dark leafy green vegetables. After all, think about this, cows don’t drink milk. Where’d they get all that calcium? From the greens that they eat all day and that’s where we should get ours. So have those big plates of kale and broccoli, etc., there’s calcium fortified foods. It’s easy to get enough calcium, but again that’s not what the disease is. What is the disease? Every first-year medical student learns that Wolff’s law of bone says that the more you use the bone the stronger it gets. So carrying weight loads on your shoulders like we used to do all day 100 years ago. We spent all day gathering firewood and carrying vegetables from the garden, and using tools and the very act of using your bones against gravity makes them stronger. It wakes up cells called osteoblasts in the bones that makes the bones stronger.
Nobody used to get osteoporosis a 150, 200 years ago. It’s a 21st century, 20th and 21st century disease. Why? Because we stopped using our bones. In the morning, we get up, go to breakfast, we sit. Time to go to work, in the car, the train, the bus and we sit. Get to work in front of your computer, you sit. Time for lunch, go to the cafeteria, the restaurant, you sit. Come back for your afternoon work session in front of the computer, you sit. Time to go home, get in the car, the train, the bus, you sit. Come in the kitchen, in the living room door there, and you go to the dining room table for dinner and you sit. And then you go in to watch the news, get depressed and you sit. And then you go answer your email and you sit, and then you go to bed.
We’ve become sedentary and Wolff’s law says use it or lose it. You stop using these bones and they will dissolve. Osteoporosis is not a disease of calcium deficiency. Osteoporosis is disuse atrophy of the bones. Our bones are atrophying from disuse. If you don’t use your muscles they atrophy, they turn into guacamole. You don’t use your bones they turn into Styrofoam and it’s a reversible disease. Start using your bones, go take some walks, get a little weighted vest and take a walk and your bones get stronger.
So this whole calcium thing is not only misplaced, because the disease itself isn’t a calcium deficiency, but there’s plenty of calcium around, again, in whole plant foods. So I would urge people, eat lots of greens, don’t be taking calcium tablets, at least in large amounts. The most one 500 milligram tablet, that’s it. But don’t be taking 1500 milligrams of calcium and think you’re going be making your bones stronger, it’s not and it really increases your risk for other diseases. So again another nutritional diversion, it’s unnecessary. Eat your whole food plant-based diet, take a good walk every day, do physical work, your bones will stay nice and strong.
Clint: Wonderful, now a little bit about essential fatty acids and this one gets a little tricky when you’re treating rheumatoid arthritis. And the reason being is because often the good sources of essential fatty acids actually are quite fatty themselves. And I’ve found that with people with RA that fat is probably . . . of the three, of fat, of simple sugars, and of excess protein, probably fat is the highest aggravator of the three. So I found it’s a very delicate balance between taking too many foods that are specifically recognized as high in essential fatty acids versus keeping pain to a minimum. And personally what I did, rightly or wrongly, is get all of my healthy fats just from the buckwheat, the quinoa, brown rice, basmati rice, just those pseudo-grains and grains. And I didn’t specifically try and address essential fatty acids in a specific food and I certainly had no issues as far as I could tell, no side effects of low essential fatty acids. So what are your thoughts on this for someone trying to find that balance, particularly with thea severe sensitivity to fats like in rheumatoid?
Dr. Klaper: Right. So you’ve opened the box on some interesting, but kind of a little bit of complex biochemistry here. And what we’re talking about is essentially, people say, “Oh, I don’t want to eat fat. I don’t want to get fat.” Yeah, fat is not the enemy. We need fats every day. Our brains are made of fats, our nerves are wrapped with fat, our hormones are made of fats, you need some fats every day. But they need to be of the good kind of fats, the so-called Omega-3 fatty acids. And these are not terribly abundant in nature, but you want to get them out of whole plant foods to the greatest extent possible. And they’re found in things like flaxseeds, Chia seeds, hemp seeds, as well as in the cell walls of dark green leafy vegetables, and walnuts have them as well.
So I really insist, in fact all my patients . . . I think it’s a wonderful idea to put a tablespoon of ground flax seeds, freshly ground flax seeds on your oatmeal in the morning, to have a handful of walnuts, either eat them or to put them in a blender and make a salad dressing out of them. And again, eat those big helpings of dark green leafy vegetables. And most people are able to do quite well as far as their fatty acid intake goes. But people aren’t really eating those foods or they’ve got a real fire raging in their tissues here and I really want to increase the anti-inflammatory effect of these long chain mega-3 fatty acids, then I, I don’t know about you, sir, but I will give my patients supplemental DHA.
DHA is made by algae that float in the ocean and now they’re growing those algae cells and extracting the DHA out of the algae cells and so it’s algae-derived DHA. So I will give most of my patients a squirt of that or a dropper full, on pretty much most days, and I feel they’re better about it and they get a bit better results, as well. Now, eat those greens and the ground flax and have your walnuts, and if there’s any question I don’t think there’s any drawback in taking a squirt of algae -derived DHA on a daily basis.
Clint: Okay, yep, that sounds great. For me it was, for me my sensitivity to any kind of fats was so dramatic that . . . however, every time I would eat a bowl of salad I’d feel amazing, so my approach was to eat like a cow. I like just ate so much salad it was humorous. It was hilarious.
Dr. Klaper: And it helped you for many reasons and the Omega-3 is one of those, but lots of other good stuff in those salads. Absolutely.
Clint: Wonderful. Well, we’ve ticked off those common obstacles that people have about a plant-based diet and there’s plenty of ways that they can start a plant-based diet. Let’s now start to angle towards rheumatoid arthritis for the back end of our interview. Now could you just give us an overview, we don’t need your full bio, I know you’ve got a very intense and detailed webinar that people can buy on your website. It’s very affordable. It’s like $12 or something. I’ve watched it, it’s fantastic. Can you give us just an overview of that for a few minutes about leaky gut and how the food particles can traverse through the gut wall and into the bloodstream and trigger the joint disease?
Dr. Klaper: Indeed. Here was one of the last of the puzzle boxes to give up its secrets here and again, if you asked most rheumatologists, “Doctor, do you think what your patients eating has anything to do with these sore swollen joints they’re bringing in.” “Ah, no, food has nothing to do with it. I let them eat whatever they want.” Well, it’s turning out, I mean I feel . . . they say, “Well, how can food affect it?” Two things, one jokingly, the stomach’s here, the joints are out here, they don’t have anything to do with each other. But the belief that really kept the blinders on us physicians are that proteins are fairly big molecules, long chains of amino acids and the dogma that we are taught is that they’re so big a molecule, the lining of the intestine, the gut wall will not allow these big molecules to pass through the gut wall and find their way into the bloodstream.
So if you ask even most physicians today, “Do you think the proteins that your patients are eating are leaking into the bloodstream?” “Naw, it can’t happen. They’re too big.” Well, a couple of clues made us start changing our view of this. One is that when you look at a lot of people who have auto-immune diseases from asthma to lupus, to rheumatoid arthritis, we find if you look in their blood they have antibodies against cow protein, against various dairy proteins, against various animal proteins, and you say, “Wait a minute. How are they forming antibodies against milk proteins and animal muscle proteins if that protein didn’t leak into the bloodstream?” Is an important question and second we’re taught in medical school, if you just shut up and listen to the patient, 90% of the time they’re telling you the diagnosis and if you keep listening they’ll tell you what treatment they need.
So when I started taking good history from my patients, these are often youngish people when rheumatoid arthritis comes on, I ask them, “When did this start? When’s the first time you noticed, “O’uh-oh, something’s not right here.” And they’ll tell you, “Oh, two years ago Christmas.” “What happened two years ago Christmas? Where were you? What were you doing?” And we talk about, they’re sitting there and then I started asking questions, “Did you take any antibiotics before the onset of this condition?” “Oh yeah, I had a dental infection. Boy, I had like three rounds of erythromycin before the dentist finally pulled it.” Okay, no one thought that he had any adverse effects, maybe a little diarrhea off of it, but no one thought there was any further problem with that.
Well, we are now finding out, now I’m not anti-antibiotics, God bless them, when you’ve got a pneumonia, when you’ve got septic process going up your arm, antibiotics are wonderful drugs if you need them. But we’re finding that they can’t tell the good bacteria from the bad bacteria and they wind up, especially a prolonged course of these drugs, can kill off the good guy bacteria down there and allow the pathogenic organisms to set up housekeeping in the gut lining. And these organisms put out byproducts that injure the gut and allow molecular spaces to open up between the lining of the gut cells. And these large molecules do indeed start leaking into the bloodstream in the so-called leaky gut syndrome, funny name, not funny condition. And it’s a matter of increasing intestinal permeability, which we are now seeing ais a huge factor in so many of these conditions.
So yes, I want to help the person get on whatever herbal or natural substance that will help their joints, but my focus is getting that gut lining back to normal again and so there are supplements you can get at the natural food store that will help restore the gut integrity. I want these folks on a good probiotic to layer down a carpet of healthy bacteria. But most importantly I want to yank out those offending animal proteins, saturated fats, those pro-inflammatory substances. And again, and here’s where a whole food, plant-based diet is so full of these lovely phytonutrients that heal the gut lining, that foster the growth of the good guy bacteria down in your gut. They go such a long way towards reversing the process that set the whole inflammatory condition off.
Those sore joints are the tail of the dog. That’s the last thing that happens. That’s the end of a chain of events that have injured the gut lining. So I have them stop drinking chlorinated drinking water, stop the soft drinks, stop the coffee, stop the alcohol, stop the antibiotics if you don’t need them, stop meat and dairy laced with antibiotics, stop that assault on your gut flora. Heal up the gut lining with a whole food, plant-based diet and the supplements that I talk about in my webinar and a nice probiotic and Omega-3, a little curcumin, whatever you like, and, “Oh, doctor, I can’t believe how much better my joints feel.”
So that’s the foundation of my treatment and I think it will become the foundation of practitioners everywhere. I must admit it’s a strange and powerful and nasty disease, rheumatoid arthritis, and I can’t say this is the magic pill for everybody. I’ve got some who are stubborn and they don’t respond to just that program. These are folks who benefit from coming to our clinic and doing a water fast and there are many ways by which a water fast, and their often longish ones, ten days, two weeks, three weeks, four weeks, not as bad as you think, you’re not hungry on a water fast. But there’s a lot of therapeutic effects to a water fast, one of which is it’s a powerful anti-inflammatory and it removes that barrage of food substances that might be perpetuating the process. So sometimes a longish water fast is the lead up to a healthy plant-based diet. It’s been a real effective key in helping folks finally overcome this condition. But it can flare-up from time to time. There’s still some mysteries about the condition. But if you haven’t cleaned up your diet, if you’re still eating the chicken and the fish and the burgers and the pizzas and the dairy products, there is almost no hope of getting better at that point. You’ve really got a clean it up and declare be kind to gut for a week, month, year, life and let your gut heal with a healthy diet and lifestyle.
Clint: Absolutely, everything you’ve said is exactly the sort of things that I’ve been saying to everyone who I’ve work with. I say that when you’ve got one of the worst diseases on the planet that doesn’t literally kill you itself, you’ve got to apply an equal and opposite strategy that is extremely powerful. You can’t have any compromises. Bbecause if you want to have a chance of getting up drugs or keeping drugs to an absolute minimum, then you have to apply an enormous effort, discipline, and make no mistakes with all of your eating, because anything that you do wrong is going to hurt you badly.
Dr. Klaper: Well said. I’m going to start sending my patients to you.
Clint: Now, I want to talk to you about the other way around, but before we get to sending a lot of people in your direction, I haven’t spoken to you about this off-line or off the call, but I would like to sort of send as many people to your direction as possible. People who are following our program, I would like you to be the person that I recommend that they go to for all of their medical issues of which I am not in a position to comment on with regards to questions about medications and so forth. But before we get to how they can contact you, I just want to, I think this next little bit will be fascinating for listeners.
I want to share with you the folks that I’ve found most difficult to work with. Folks that I found difficult to work with have been on antibiotics or prednisone or antacids for a very long period of time. Now, my understanding of this, you’ve covered the antibiotics, you said you watch my Ted Talk online. You know that my history was five years of antibiotic use with the doxycycline low dose for acne as a teenager. And then after I finished that five years of antibiotics, it was then another six or seven years or so of fairly average Western lifestyle. Eating, drinking, getting together with the boys, going out at night, party sort of lifestyle. And that eventually led to what I believe to be the cause of my ensuing rheumatoid arthritis.
And I find that the number one risk factor for when I get survey results back from my clients, the number one common denominator, not always, but the most common is long dose antibiotic use again and you’ve explained that there is a time and a place for antibiotics, but I see it as the most frequent contributor. Now, so we know that that will ruin the micro biome, we know then that the micro biome is in all sorts of disarray or disbiose is because of the antibiotic use. The prednisone though is more subtle and I’ve done my own research on this and people have found . . . I’ve really had trouble getting a lot of progress with people who’ve been on prednisone for a decade. I find there are two reasons, one I found that it does increased intestinal permeability, so I’ve been able to identify a study that has proven that prednisone use does increase intestinal permeability or leaky gut. But the other more subtle aspect that I believe plays a role and I’d love your feedback on this and what you’ve found, is that it’s used on asthma patients to reduce the mucus in the chest and lungs, and my feeling is that it doesn’t allow the production or the reproduction of the depleted mucosal lining to occur in a way that it should. So I feel that the healthy bacteria aren’t having a place to live and to house themselves in the gut lumen, as they would without the presence of the prednisone. So what are your feelings on that? Do you think there’s some truth in that?
Dr. Klaper: Well, a very astute question and a good observation. Oh, prednisone, God bless prednisone, and it can be a wonderful life-saving drug, and I do prescribe it from time to time, and it’s like a big fire extinguisher and it certainly suppresses inflammation. However, as you said, that wonderful effect comes at a cost. And prednisone has some other well-known properties and one of which is it is not friendly to the integrity of any tissue in the body. It weakens the collagen fibers and the connective tissue, and people who are on prednisone for a long time their skin gets more fragile when they cut themselves, it doesn’t heal as well. They’re more prone to infections. It suppresses the immune system, And that might be useful for little bit, but you keep that going week after week, month after month, as you astutely point out, it’s going to prevent everything from working well, including the gut bacteria having a suitable place to live, and the bronchial bacterial lining as well, the lining of the bronchial membranes.
So yes, I think it’s a major player. Now, from the clinician’s point of view, what do I do? Because a lot of people that are on prednisone they’ll say, “Man, as soon as I stop it, it gets worse.” And yes, that’s been the general experience. So again, we’ve got to go back to square one here. If you’re on prednisone and it’s helping you, that’s fine, but you’re ultimate goal should be a steady, relentless pursuit of tapering bad drug down and down and down, until you can get off it. And our non-nutritionally aware rheumatology colleagues will say, “Ah, but they all flare up. When you stop prednisone, they all flare up. They all flare up.” That’s right, Doctor, because you don’t talk to them about what they’re eating and you keep letting them consume the meat, and the dairy, and the alcohol and the coffee and the tea and keep injuring their gut lining. Yeah, of course they’re all flare.
But what the person on the prednisone needs to do is one, realize that the taper may take months and months. You may have to come down one milligram a month. It may take you 6 months, 12 months, 18 months to finally get off this. But the point is use that time to institute that healthy plant-based diet, let that gut lining reestablish itself, reestablish a good gut flora, take out those inflammatory substances, and your whole diet there. Use that taper time to really healthy up your diet and thus the gut lining, so the object is when you finely do take that last prednisone, you don’t have that flare. So it’s getting the tiger by the tail on prednisone, you’re afraid to let go of the tail because the tiger may turn on you there, but you gently sing the tiger to sleep and gently let go of the tail there. Now if you’ve done your homework to really clean up your diet and healthy up your gut lining. So yes, it definitely can be done.
Clint: Awesome, and absolutely my experience as well is that people, when they work very, very determinedly towards tapering down on their prednisone, very careful as you said. One milligram at a time, over even half a milligram for people that are ultra sensitive and very, very slowly and watching everything that they eat and exercising as much as they’re physically capable of, it is possible. So yes, it isn’t all bad news.
Dr. Klaper: No, you just need [inaudible [00:44:47].
Clint: Now, I’d like to firstly just find out, you’re going to be in Australia. Are you going to be giving public talks? Are people going to be able to see you in Australia next year?
Dr. Klaper: Yes, I’m coming over. One of my patients, who is now a friend, Mr. Nick Samaras is the publisher of Canberra Weekly or Canberra Today, and he is very graciously flying my wife and myself, along with Brenda Davis, a wonderful plant-based dietician. He’s going to fly us over. We’re going to do a talk or two in Canberra and then we’re planning to come up to Sydney. Now this is going to be mid-April coming up. I’ll share the exact dates with you when we lock them in. And then we’re probably going to zip down to Melbourne for a talk or two down there as well. So we’re going to do a brief Australia tour. I have dear friends in Cairns, or Cairns, as you pronounce it there and might zip over to Cairns and show my wife the barrier reef, as well as give a talk over there. So we’d all like to linger on your beautiful continent as long as we can. So mid-April, we’ll send you our travel schedule when we have it.
Clint: Please do and if your friend at Canberra Today isn’t adverse to you being able to do other appearances, I understand because I’ve been in the speaking business for many years. My full-time profession, I’m a stand-up comedian. I’ve been working professionally for 15 years as an entertainer. So I understand that sometimes when a booking agent flies you into a country and you’re performing, in my case, at their club, they don’t feel too good when you go and perform at someone else’s club because they’ve covered your expenses and everything. So I understand that there might be some sensitivities there, but I know that my audience base would love to see you talk live and potentially – and I don’t want to step on anyone’s toes – but if you’re around I’d love to organise something myself for you as well. So that’s just something, but again, without stepping on anyone’s toes and if it’s not possible, it’s not possible, but it’s something we can talk about offline.
Dr. Klaper: Absolutely. I’d love to do that.
Clint: That’ll be great. So let’s get people in your direction. First of all I want to personally give a massive plug and recommendation to all of your recorded webinars online. For the cost of basically a green juice, you can purchase and watch very long and lengthy and awesome talks from Dr. Klaper. You’ve got one about leaky gut, you have a couple else on there, perhaps you can just refresh my memory, a couple of your other webinars online.
Dr. Klaper: We have ones of healthy bones, we have one thriving on a plant-based diet, how some people have tried a plant-based diet, “Oh, it didn’t work for me. I ate it all week and then I ate some meat and I felt better. I’m paleo guy. I’m a carnivore.” Well, how do you not fall into that trap? We talked about that one. Also, I have other DVDs, understanding your laboratory tests, fasting, how your digestive system works. If they go to my website, doctorklaper.com, I’m sure you will hopefully post . . . it’s all spelled out www.doctorklaper.com and click on the DVDs and webinars section there and you’ll see them all listed there.
Clint: I’ll definitely put that in the show notes. I’ll also put it at the top so people can jump straight there. Now, finally, I know that you do Skype consultations and as I said at the top of the call, we’ve got people listening from all over the world. And I know that you consult with some of the people that I’m working with, as well, and they just give you the highest recommendation. So if people wanted to get consultations through you, should they contact the number at the front desk and make a booking through your receptionist?
Dr. Klaper: Exactly. Our clinic is called True North Health Center and the number in the U.S., area code (707) 586-5555 and hit 0 when you hear the recording, you’ll speak to the front desk person, and yes, you can ask to book a Skype consult or a telephone consult with me and I’ll be glad to help however I can.
Clint: Absolutely fantastic. Now I just to let everyone know that Dr. Klaper, you volunteered your time this afternoon, it’s your day off or it’s your afternoon off, and you have volunteered now the good part of an hour to be with us and to share this information, which is extremely valuable and the sort of stuff that people who are in severe pain and really need answers, need to hear. So from the bottom of my heart, speaking for everyone who’s listening, thank you very, very much for your time and it’s been an absolute pleasure.
Dr. Klaper: Oh, it’s just been a delight for me and rheumatoid arthritis never takes a day off, neither do I. So it’s been an honor to give that service to you and your listeners, so all the best to you. You’re doing great work, man. I’m very impressed with you and very thankful for you, for spreading this light and this information out to your listeners. So keep up the great work and I’ll look forward to seeing you when I come to Sydney next year.
Clint: That would be awesome. Thank you so much.
Dr. Klaper: You bet, take care.