University Professor Teaches Clinical Nutrition with Compassion
Article re-posted from: http://prime.peta.org/2016/01/university-professor-teaches-clinical-nutrition-with-compassion
Teaching Clinical Nutrition to Chiropractic Students in a manner that promotes respect for our planet and its inhabitants while uncovering uncomfortable truths about the foods that people consume is one of two passions driving Dr. Paul Goldberg’s career. The other is helping his patients reverse chronic disease conditions at his Georgia Practice, The Goldberg Clinic. Dr. Goldberg believes that both these endeavors are related.
While in his 20s, Dr. Goldberg was stricken with rheumatoid arthritis and told by physicians that he would be permanently crippled, forcing him to examine his lifestyle in order to find a solution. He found answers to his dilemma by working at a vegan natural hygiene center in Florida, followed by graduate studies in Chronic Disease Control at the University of Texas Health Science Center. In just two years, he reversed his “incurable disease” and became focused on helping others do the same. As an educator and a clinician, he has proved that living healthfully and compassionately go hand in hand (or “hand in paw,” as he puts it).
A healthy lifestyle and a compassionate one, Dr. Goldberg contends, are one and the same, commenting, “America’s exploding chronic disease rates and ecological issues are related to our agricultural practices and the inhumane ways we abuse and then consume animals. All this contributes to the myriad of chronic diseases our nation is enveloped in.”
Dr. Goldberg refers to the insidious way that the animal agriculture industry has disconnected us from the realities and horrors of factory farms as “the food matrix.” He sees this as akin to the many pharmaceuticals that his ill patients are dependent on when he meets them, a phenomenon he refers to as “the medical matrix.” “In both matrixes,” he says, “a false consciousness is promoted, leading to disastrous results. We are drowning in pharmaceuticals linked to a multitude of toxic effects, while supporting factory farms that cause ghastly suffering for billions of animals and perpetuate disease upon those who consume them. Ironically, since the agriculture industry pumps enormous amounts of drugs into animals, the consumption of these animals is a major additional source of drugs for humans.”
As Dr. Goldberg teaches his students at Life Chiropractic College:
Nutrition is a process of transformation—ingesting materials transformed by nature from earth into food and then again transformed, through digestion, absorption and assimilation into sentient beings, including humans. To the degree those materials are chosen wisely and digested and absorbed efficiently, we have health. To the degree they are chosen unwisely or transformed inefficiently into living tissues, we develop disease.
Choosing our foods in a conscious manner, Dr. Goldberg contends, involves considering the effect that they will have on:
1. Our health
2. The environment
3. Other animals
“Each time a food selection is made,” Dr. Goldberg believes, “is like throwing a stone into a pond … ripples extend, having ramifications upon ourselves, the planet, and on other animals.”
Dr. Goldberg incorporates into his courses discussions about choosing food on the basis of how it relates to human-health, animal-welfare, and environmental issues. He argues in favor of a plant-based diet, eliminating most or all animal products. He and his associate, Dr. David Tener, also incorporate this message into their work with patients who come for help with reversing a wide range of chronic, degenerative issues.
This thoughtful and scientific orientation toward health and nutrition is further evidenced in the choice of materials that Dr. Goldberg has his students read, including Diet for a New America and The Food Revolution by John Robbins and The China Study by Colin Campbell, Ph.D. Dr. Goldberg also shows the PETA video “Glass Walls,” narrated by Paul McCartney. Having taught clinical nutrition to more than 1,000 students per year since 1980, Dr. Goldberg estimates that he has reached over 35,000 people, both students and patients. In turn, Doctors of Chiropractic who have studied under Dr. Goldberg convey what they have learned to their patients.
Dr. Goldberg admits that it has not always been easy:
Diet has emotional factors tied with it, including familial traditions. It can be uncomfortable to have habits we grew up with questioned, and painful to realize that our habits have not only played a role in the genesis of our disease, but have also contributed to inhumane acts forced upon innocent, feeling, sentient animals. Some students are at first taken aback, feeling their way of life is being challenged. Others are grateful that their eyes have been opened. I believe that the job of a good teacher is not to simply cater to making students feel good about themselves, but to encourage exploration of beliefs and behaviors. This sometimes means getting outside one’s comfort zone. I often hear from former students, however, now doctors of chiropractic, who, while uncomfortable at the time their beliefs were questioned, are, years later, very grateful for my opening their eyes. This has led to changes for a healthier, more humane way of living on their part. I like to think that the “D.C.” after my name not only refers to being a Doctor of Chiropractic, but also as a Doctor of Compassion.
PETA thanks Dr. Goldberg for enlightening both his students at Life University and his clinic patients about the humane aspects of nutrition that we should all be conscious of. We commend Life University for having Dr. Goldberg as a professor for over 30 years, teaching nutritional science, ecological consciousness, and compassion for all living beings.