Causes of Weight Gain and Disease

In these times of rapidly shared information, one would think the health of people globally would be improving quicker than it is. While It may be for informed consumers, there are a number of growing concerns for everyone and more importantly, future generations. It’s easy to eat highly nutritious, delicious foods without paying a premium and as you’re about to read, nutrition is the keystone of wellness.

Ethnobotanists are still discovering plants and super foods on every continent that are used medicinally and for food. Click here to learn more or visit the Media page.

  Throughout our history we’ve never been as concerned over artificial food additives, genetically modified organisms (GMO’s), or toxins like Glyphosate (RoundUp), as we are today. Food was generally cleaner, safer, and healthier. If you bought a tomato in 1825 there was no asterisk* or SKU number implying it was grown with synthetic fertilizers and pesticides or irradiated. If you bought bread, cheese, lettuce, and apples at a farmers market in 1920, you knew what you were buying because it was artisan quality; made and grown with passion. The dank soil used to grow produce was rich in elements and minerals, not over-worked and yielding a lackluster fruit with up to 200% fewer nutrients than produce grown in 2017.

It is in fact easier to eat healthy now than it ever has been; also easier to learn about plant-based, cruelty free diets. Besides produce there are high-quality, organic supplements and super foods like Spirulina, Chlorella, Goji Berries, Apple Cider Vinegar, Organic Honey, Kefer, Lemon Water, Micro Greens and Sprouts, Quinoa, Flax Seeds, Chia Seeds, Hemp Seeds, Kombucha, and of course healing herbs / spices / teas like Dandelion, Mugwort, St. Johns Wort, Maca Root, Turmeric, Cayenne and Black Pepper, Yerba Maté, Comfrey, Passionflower, Peppermint, Cinnamon, Pau d’arco, and Pink Himalayan salt.

“Food like products” are consumed everyday because they’re more convenient and often taste better because your tongue is being duped with additives and sugar. The truth would be more appealing if it was sugar coated, but this is not the time for misinformation. Here are a some statistics to think about:

“In 1990, one in fifteen women was diagnosed with breast cancer. It is now one in eight. The American Cancer Society estimates that one in three women will develop breast cancer in the next decade, if this trend continues.”

“The problem of becoming overweight and excessively overweight has increased 82% over the last two decades.”

“The American Diabetes Association reports that one in three babies born in 2014 in the Unites States will develop diabetes at some point if the current trends continue.”

“…heart attacks, prior to 1930, were almost unheard of. Back then with a U.S. population of approximately 130 million, roughly 3,000 people died of cardiovascular disease each year. This year, about 1,000,000 people will suffer that same fate.” Even accounting for the population increase, this means exponentially more cardiovascular disease.

“We spend twice what the rest of the industrialized world spends on healthcare per year. Additionally for all that money spent, we rank in the bottom of industrialized nations in life expectancy. This raises serious questions about the efficacy of our current healthcare model.”

“In the next decade, it is predicted that the United States may be short as many as 125,000 primary care physicians to meet the countries healthcare needs.”

“A new analysis prepared for The Fiscal Times by Scott Kahan, director of the National Center for Weight and Wellness at George Washington University, pegs the total cost of obesity – including direct medical and non-medical services, decreased worker productivity, disability and premature death – at $305.1 Billion dollars annually.”

“Some 27% of young people enrolling in our military programs are rejected because of weight problems.”

“…with the number of overweight and obese people rising from 857 million in 1980 to 2.1 billion in 2013, according to a major new analysis.” These numbers are for the world population.

“In recent autopsies in children, 13% have shown non-alcoholic fatty liver disease while 38% of obese children have non-alcoholic fatty liver disease. Whats really alarming here is that this disease was never before seen in children. in 2012, 25% of Americans had excess fat in their livers.” “If people drop from the overweight and extremely overweight categories into a normal weight category, the liver can heal itself and return to its normal size. With only a 48-hour caloric restriction diet, the livers fat content can be reduced by 25%. That is a significant drop in fat!”

“Currently, about two-thirds of the U.S. population is either overweight or obese. Now flash forward. In six short years, by 2020, experts from the Center for Disease Control predict that 80% of Americans will be overweight. By the year 2030, 86% of American adults may be overweight. This same study predicts that by 2048, 100% of the United States population will be overweight. What is wrong with this picture?”

If people collectively change their diets, become more active, and create a healthier lifestyle, these numbers would fluctuate in a positive direction. This is purely for statistics but at the same token, it’s startling that this could be our future so quickly.

The looming health problems around the world are caused by Toxins, Nutritional Deficiencies, being Overweight, and Stress.

The above statistics are from the book “The New Health Conversation: TDOS Syndrome and Solutions” by Peter Greenlaw, Drew Greenlaw, and Nicholas Messina MD. You’d be right if you guessed that TDOS stands for toxins, nutritional deficiencies, overweight, and stress – the underlying cause of disease, depression, and cancers. One of these factors is unhealthy on its own, but when you look at how they’re all interconnected, it’s actually quite clear that this is the root of disease as we know it.

“When these four co-factors combine, it sets off a perfect storm, preventing the body from working as efficiently as it should. While each factor alone weakens our health, together they threaten it so much more powerfully that our future as a species is endangered.”
“Were now using 10,000 chemicals in the production of food. Less than 500 have ever been tested for what they do to us as human beings.”
– Peter Greenlaw

An example of this connection would be how toxins are trapped by the body and stored in fat cells as a defense mechanism when there is a lack of key nutrients and antioxidants to get rid of them. “Obesogens are chemicals that wreak havoc with the human hormonal system, resulting in weight gain and a multitude of other terrible diseases that plague the American populations.” Obesogens and EDC’s or Endocrine Disrupting Chemicals are a main factor in weight gain, but this was only discovered in the last decade with technology.

“Endocrine disrupting chemicals are those that interfere with how our natural hormones function. Some target brain signaling, while others target hormones that play a role in our metabolism. They get into our bodies from numerous sources, including so-called natural compounds like those in soy products, food packaging, processed foods, and the pesticides that are sprayed on our fruits and vegetables. It’s believed that these chemicals take over the natural bodily systems that control our body weight, actually causing us to gain weight.”  “Some mimic actual hormones like estrogen, thus blocking the action of other real hormones like testosterone. Others change how our genes function and basically program us to gain weight.”

Let’s recap… Roughly 200 years ago, people of any working class (even wildlife) had access to clean organic foods grown in healthy soil. They limited their caloric intake (which is beneficial) because they were working harder or couldn’t always afford food, and lived with fewer industrial pollutants in the air and water. Sounds Awesome! 🍏🍍

✈⛽ Fast forward 100 years and most farmers use overworked, dead soil producing lackluster produce contaminated with chemicals that damage your nervous system and make you gain weight; plus we typically don’t work as hard, don’t exercise as much as we should, eat foods that are over processed and loaded with fats, sugars, and carcinogenic additives, and absorb pollutants from the air we breathe, water we drink, and personal hygiene products we use daily. The cherry on top of this fudged up sundae is the amount of stress most people go through in their daily lives – unable to pinpoint exactly why they feel that way until they try something new. 🚙🚃

STRESS causes the body to release cortisol which “is the stress response hormone. It effects the breakdown of glucose, protein, and fat and has anti-inflammatory and anti-allergy effects” Essentially, it’s a “fight-or-flight” evolutionary hormone that was vital in the days of roaming the world with tigers, bears, snakes, and other predators, helping humans to persevere in the face of danger. “It helps the body maintain physiological functioning, especially when in a state of trauma. Without it, the body would not be able to deal with stress.”

Cortisol signals the body to stop burning fat, slow down digestion, and use immediate fuel sources like glucose or simple sugars, which is why being stressed or upset can cause indigestion. But “when cortisol tries to deal with your everyday stress, guess what? the message the body keeps getting is not to burn fat.” Chronic stress and elevated cortisol are crucial factors in our inability to lose fat. How can you work against nature? The best solution is to meditate and relax, lowering adrenaline and cortisol levels, thereby allowing you to balance hormones and lose more weight!

The main difference between life in 2017, and life in 1217 is before modern living, amidst the quiet forests and crystal clear skies, humans truly relaxed and cortisol levels would return to normal; reverting to homeostasis. In 2017 we’re surrounded by technology and so much external stimulus, we’re inundated with stress signals all day every day. Some people cope with stress better than others using different techniques, eventually you can completely rid yourself of the things that cause unnecessary fear or discomfort in your experience. In fact, this is the first step to creating a peaceful life is to remove things that are harmful; establishing healthy boundaries for your own peace of mind.

The Field of Psychosomatic research…

Psychosomatic (adjective) psy·cho·so·mat·ic: of a physical illness or other condition caused or aggravated by a mental factor such as internal conflict or stress; of or relating to the interaction of mind and body. These factors can be in the form of cheap food, toxic relationships, bad jobs, or detrimental beliefs & attitudes that you hold and tell yourself every day. For some people, the moment they wake up can potentially be a trigger for cortisol, then midway through their day another major spike, and just when they’ve gained their composure, another trigger in the form of traffic, spilled coffee, a flat tire, a bad phone call, an argument with a co-worker or friend, etc. It’s important to note that thoughts and emotions have an adverse reaction on your stress levels as well.

Imagine yourself before giving a big presentation in front of 2,000 people (this might be your comfort zone, but for most people, the very idea is terrifying). You might be nervous, sweaty, and the more you doubt, the worse you feel – thoughts race and seem to spiral out of control. Your friend walks up with a big smile and assures you that you’re prepared and have nothing to worry about, placing their hand on your shoulder and reminding you of why you’re there in the first place. The ideas being presented to you are changing your physiological state, making you more confident, assured, and calm. With their help, you walk on stage and deliver a great speech confidently.

Or another example might be how you ponder all the possible outcomes for any given situation, often the negative outcomes – dating, creating art, driving long distances, performing in front of crowds, or even cooking dinner for family and friends. The power of your thoughts can literally create anxiety and deplete your energy and mood, or build your faith and allow you to thrive!

 🎶🎶 “You hold the key to love and fear, all in your trembling hand. Just one key unlocks them both, its there at your command.” 🎶🎶 – The Youngbloods

Every choice you make is either feeding disease or curing it.

So if you’re serious about trimming the fat from your life – literally & figuratively speaking – while creating more harmony, a good place to start is right on your shoulders, behind your eyeballs, and in between your ears… your own consciousness. Attitude is the mind’s paintbrush, it can add color to any situation. 🎨

There’s More to the Picture Than Meets the Eye…

I’ve learned from several teachers and doctors that only genetics plays a significant role in disease. That may be true for hemophilia, syndromes, abnormalities, and things of this nature, but the main reason that people get sick and unhealthy are the choices we make on a daily basis. The amount of toxins you absorb, the quality of foods you eat, stress levels, and how well you take care of your physical body.

I’m sorry to tell you that you cannot blame your parents for eczema, psoriasis, acne, high blood pressure, obesity, diabetes, asthma,  heart disease, or anything else that can be prevented or cured – I mean you can, but it wouldn’t be accurate or change anything.

Ingesting all 90 vitamins, minerals, amino acids, and essential fatty acids can cure cancer, arthritis, depression, anxiety, obesity, high blood pressure, diabetes, arteriosclerosis, Crohns disease, skin ailments, and the list goes on. 

The easiest way to get all these nutrients is natural, food-derived organic supplements like what you would find at your local health food store. In the form of vitamins or powdered supplements that can be taken regularly or added to smoothies, drinks, and food.  Another method is juicing, using a juicer to extract the vital nutrients from fruits and vegetables that you would otherwise have to eat extremely large servings to get the same benefit from. Meal prepping fresh fruits and vegetables so healthy salads and snacks are always available is another great and convenient way.

This isn’t a hypothesis, it works like clockwork if the person is willing to stick with the treatment and let go of harmful things from their lifestyle.


You may be wondering how this is possible, but it’s simple. The body “replaces” itself and heals every 1-4 years depending on age, genetics, activity levels, and the amount of nutrients that one eats to provide the body with the necessary building blocks to heal. For a healthy person, the liver is rebuilt in 6 weeks, skeletal system 6 months, the skin 1 year, blood 4 months, DNA 2 months, and the brain replaces itself in as little as 1 year! *This can take longer for someone who is smoking, drinking, and not exercising or regularly eating whole foods.

This intrinsic healing mechanism is the same phenomena behind “anti-aging” supplements and super foods. When the body receives all the necessary 90 nutrients, it can do amazing things. To get results you’ve never had, you have to do things you’ve never done. It’s never too late, by incorporating these methods into your routine, you will look better, have more energy, feel better and think clearer. This has been proven time and time again in the film “Fat Sick and Nearly Dead”.

I wouldn’t feel comfortable taking such a firm stance on this subject if I didn’t directly experience it myself. I used to have acne, psoriasis, mood swings & anxiety, digestive problems, and drank 1-2 energy drinks a day just to function. After switching to a vegetarian diet for 5 years, eating more raw and cooked vegetables, drinking purified water and medicinal teas, staying active and incorporating mind body exercises like yoga and meditation, I’m completely healthy and no ailments.

One factor people don’t take into consideration as they change their diet, is the physical process the body undergoes while adjusting to the changes in food. When starting a juice cleanse and drinking only raw fruit and vegetable juice for 14 or even 60 days, the healing process takes over. *This type of fasting is for people who want to lose weight – an individual at a healthy weight shouldn’t juice longer than 3 days before they burn too much of their fat reserves. The first three days are the hardest; you may get headaches, extreme food cravings, fatigue, depression or anxiety; as long as you follow the recommended guidelines you’ll quickly feel normal again.

Please consult with your doctor or physician before starting a juice fast or diet

Doctors and nutritionists agree, this is a normal process called ketosis as the body’s metabolism changes from “scavenge for more food” mode, to “burn fat reserves”. In addition to helping you burn body fat, ketosis can make you feel less hungry and also maintain muscles. After the initial switch, people report feeling more energized, clear-thinking, optimistic, and an overall feeling of “lightness”.

Cravings are inevitable, If you have to write sticky notes on the pantry and fridge door to remind you of your goal, then go ahead, it takes two weeks to form a new habit. After awhile it becomes second nature and you’ll look back and acknowledge your old habits while standing on a platform of improvement.

TDOS Sydrome in conjunction with an inadequate supply of fresh, organic, locally grown foods grown in rich soils is leading to the looming health crisis around the world. It’s called conventional wisdom for a reason, for thousands of years humans have known what heals us and the connection between wellness and longevity.

 “Here are three traumatic exposures people face, by the age of six, that lead to chronic disease”…

Birthing process

“Whether it is vaginal delivery or cesarean section (C-section), the modern day birthing process is fraught with long-term negative implications.”

“Some very common medical interventions and procedures for women going through vaginal delivery include fentanyl, nitrous oxide, and epidurals. In the case of an epidural, this drug-laced formula has side effects that include an adverse effect on the immune system, compromised fetal blood and oxygen supply, and less mature motor abilities in first year of life. In the case of C-sections, a study done by researchers at the University of Alberta has shown that children who are born by C-section are missing crucial gut bacteria and appear to have a greater risk of developing a host of illnesses, including asthma and type 1 diabetes, as they grow older.”

“This absence of bacteria has been linked to the fact that C-section babies do not pass through the mother’s vaginal canal, which hosts a plethora of friendly bacteria that the baby becomes exposed to in order to give it an early boost to a developing immune system. Without these bacteria, their immune system already becomes compromised, which sets the stage for more chronic disease problems down the road.”


“Data compiled by the National Vaccine Information Center (NVIC) shows that children today receive as many as 49 doses of 14 vaccines before they reach the age of six, which is roughly 12 times higher than vaccines administered in 1940. In many cases, multiple doses are given at the same time (up to five), which exposes them exponentially to higher levels of toxic ingredients in vaccines. According to an NVIC infographic:

“Vaccine recipients or ingredients in trace or larger amounts depending on specific vaccine (include) lab altered viruses and bacteria; aluminum; mercury; formaldehyde; phenoxyethanol; gluteraldehyde; sodium borate; sodium chloride; sodium acetate; monosodium glutamate (MSG); hydrochloric acid; hydrogen peroxide; lactose; gelatin; yeast protein; egg albumin; bovine and human serum albumin; antibiotics; (and other) unidentified contaminants.” Failure to remove these ingredients from the body eventually results in more chronic health conditions.””

Baby Formula

“According to the Breastfeeding Report Card distributed by the National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion, baby formula was introduced in over 60 percent of cases after three months of exclusive breastfeeding, and after six months nearly 85 percent of babies were now being fed baby formula in some capacity. With major formulas composed mostly of corn, soy, and sugar components, this genetically modified and nutritionally inferior concoction creates five times the risk of gastroenteritis, twice the risk of developing diabetes, and up to eight times the risk of developing lymphatic cancer.”

“Very few people get through these early years in life without being exposed to at least one of these factors, which virtually solidifies a chronic health problem later on in life.”



The New Health Conversation TDOS Syndrome and Solutions

by: Peter Greenlaw

Drew Greenlaw

Nicholas Messina MD