We're busy putting the finishing touches to the autumn issue of Get Fresh! magazine and the pages containing our interview with Viktoras Kulvinskas landed on my desk today. And...it is such amazing stuff I had to come on here and give a sneak preview of some of the fascinating information it contains.
Especially as I recently saw an interview with Viktoras that left me kind of outraged. When I spoke to him in July he was excited because ABC News's 20/20 show were flying him to their studio in New York for a segment on raw foods. The mainstream media has started to do the odd positive piece, so he was optimistic. But what the producers of the show did not tell him is that they had one agenda only: to portray the raw diet as a dangerous fad. In fact, the show was not about the raw diet but about orthorexia. Title: "Healthy Food, Unhealthy Obsession".
Don't bother watching this show if you want information regarding health and/or the raw diet. But if you want to marvel at an extreme example of biased reporting go here and then here (the show is in two parts).
Yes, two of the people featured in this report clearly had serious eating disorders and in the case of Johnny Righini it made pretty disturbing viewing. But Righini is known to have had an eating disorder before he went raw. Here is what he had to say about the show: "Raw food did not cause my orthorexia to develop. I chose to live a raw food lifestyle as this is what works best for me - it works with my body not against it. It is healthy for me and has been crucial in my nutritional recovery from acute eating disorders. I have been in and out of treatment for 12 1/2 years and raw is as close to I've ever come to balancing a healthy nutritional lifestyle."
This was sensationalist reporting at its very worst. For every raw food fan you show me who is miserable and unhealthy, I can show you 10 who are the very opposite.
Anyway, what was most remarkable to me about the segments of this show featuring Viktoras was how gracious he was despite the interviewer's disrespectful comments towards him. If you know anything about Viktoras you know that John Stossel completely missed the point. The point is that given what he has been through in his life, it is a miracle Viktoras is still alive. Let alone that he is so vibrantly fit and healthy in his 70th year that he has become renowned for adopting pretzel-like yoga poses in public places (lest anyone ever forget it!)
Here are a few things you may not know about the "father of the living foods movement".
- He suffered such trauma and abuse during his childhood that he didn't speak until the age of 16.
- As a high school student he won awards in maths and physics and after graduating from college he worked on contracts for the Apollo Mission, the Smithsonian Institute and Harvard.
- He discovered the raw and living foods lifestyle at the age of 29 after stress brought on a health crisis combined with rapid aging.
- After going raw he battled builimia for 10 years - a result, he said, of unresolved emotional issues coming to the surface due to the detoxifying effects of his new lifestyle. In the interview he reveals the superfood that cured his eating disorder in one month.
- His wife, the beautiful dancer Vihara Youkta, died suddenly last year. In the interview he talks about her life and her legacy and the factors to which he attributes her tragic and untimely death.
- He is one of the world's leading authorities on enzymes and trains medical staff in enzyme therapy.
That is just a fraction of what is covered in the interview. You want more? Okay, he also has some choice words to say about the mass media definition of orthorexia...if only he had been able to say them on the 20/20 show! He also shares his daily diet, his seven secrets for easy transitioning to raw, and his tips for achieving optimum health and happiness.
Every interview we run in Get Fresh! is special in its own way, but I will go so far as to say that I don't think we have ever run one that it so packed full of invaluable, cutting edge, practical information. It is unmissable, this one!