With the recent news that U.S. life expectancy plunged in the first half of 2020 due to the COVID-19 pandemic, health is something we all think about these days. But Daniel Kennedy has an even deeper concern: to promote health so people can increase their years of healthy living—to help them have a healthy long life.
"Medicine has done an incredible job at fighting disease, but not promoting health," says Kennedy, the San Diego-based CEO of Oasis of Hope, an alternative cancer treatment center offering innovations in cancer prevention and treatment. To that end, Kennedy has created and directed Oasis of Hope's seven-part docu-series, Healthy Long Life, which he says, "goes through a lot of the top issues on how to be healthy as you age." Available on Amazon Prime and Apple TV Streaming Box, the series provides information to help people prevent cancer and other diseases and to stay healthy as they age.
"Our life expectancy in the United States right now is a little over 79 years, but the CDC also measures how many of those years you'll be healthy, and they call it the healthy life expectancy," Kennedy says. "So life expectancy is about 79 years, but healthy life expectancy is only 69 years.
"That really got my attention," Kennedy says, explaining that most of us hold some beliefs about health that we need to change, including the idea that doctors exist to "fix" us when we're sick. "We're very passive about our health," he says. "and that is really what Healthy Long Life is focused on: what you can do."
Filmmakers traveled the world to explore practices and examples of healthy longevity in India, Mexico, Sardinia, Israel, China, Europe and Japan. The docu-series features Kennedy's on-location interviews with numerous experts in the fields of longevity and preventive medicine including Dr. Francisco Contreras, director of Oasis of Hope Hospital and an expert on alternative and integrative cancer treatments; Dr. Dean Ornish, founder of the Preventive Medicine Research Institute in California and a professor at UC-San Francisco; top researchers from the World Health Organization and other leading institutions and universities.
Healthy Long Life also includes stories of people Kennedy calls "cancer victors." By this, he means "people who had advanced stage cancer but were able to turn it around. ... And they are going to tell you exactly how lifestyle medicine has more impact than your genes."
Oasis of Hope's alternative cancer treatment center in Playas de Tijuana, Mexico, has been treating cancer patients for more than 50 years. Founded by Dr. Ernesto Contreras, the hospital has provided integrative cancer treatment for more than 100,000 patients. Today, Oasis of Hope is under the supervision of his son, distinguished oncologist and surgeon Dr. Francisco Contreras. Contreras leads the hospital to uphold his father's two fundamental principles: do no harm and treat the patient as yourself, overseeing the treatment of 800 cancer patients annually.
To hear more about how you can have a Healthy Long Life, listen to the entire episode of the Strang Report podcast here, find the Healthy Long Life documentary here and share these resources with friends and family who need to know the truth about lifestyle medicine. Make sure to subscribe to the Strang Report podcast on Apple Podcasts or your favorite platform for more informative and inspiring stories.
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