In November 2018, two colleagues from the video team and I had the fantastic opportunity to travel to Santiago, Chile. We recorded exclusive video content with Chilean experts in preparation for launching membership on our Spanish Diet Doctor site and I also gave a short presentation at a low carb event organized by Encuentros El Mercurio.
In the presentation, I speak about how the internet can be a powerful tool for driving the low carb movement forward in order to truly bring about a worldwide food revolution. I also describe Diet Doctor’s vision for solving worldwide epidemics of obesity and diabetes.
Table of contents
0:10 Kim’s story
0:41 Type 2 diabetes rates
2:52 Modernity – the problem and the solution
6:00 About Diet Doctor
8:19 Spanish membership
9:12 A global food revolution
10:11 Get in touch with us
Kim Gajraj: I’m here to talk to you about a global good revolution. I have a Masters in international development, I’m English, but I now live in Stockholm, Sweden, where I work as an editor of Diet Doctor in Spanish.
I discovered a low carb diet in around 2011. I found it via intermittent fasting, I started researching it, also my father is a doctor. So, together, we started researching the topic and more or less since then I’ve been following a low carb diet.
I say more or less because before I started at Diet Doctor I traveled around the world a lot. I also spent three years working in Bolivia as an anthropologist with indigenous aymara groups on nutrition-related topics, so I really experienced first hand the same obstacles that people face in different countries, in different cultures, around the world.
I’ve also had my relapses, have had to get myself back on track again. But what I saw in general was the enormity of the problem that we are facing. We are truly becoming more and more obese, more and more ill. And it’s not just adults who are suffering, it’s children, too.
I’m not going to talk much about facts and figures in this presentation, but I wanted us to look quickly at global rates of type 2 diabetes. In 1985 there were 30 million cases of diabetes globally. In 2017 there were already 425 million cases of diabetes, a huge jump. The projection for 2045, 700 million cases of diabetes around the world.
For me, this is a real life horror story. Every day, every year, huge numbers of people are dying from illnesses and afflictions related to obesity, related to lifestyle. It’s about… for me, I said horror story, right? What scares me the most is that we are accepting this as if it were a normal part of our reality. This is not normal: it’s suffering, it’s pain, and we must change it.
As part of my masters I studied modernization processes. Modernity is a big part of this problem. We have processed food, junk food, adverts for those processed foods and junk foods on television, and now also on the internet, even on children’s smart phones. The internet is part of the problem, but in my opinion, the internet is also a big part of the solution to this problem.
Because I was talking about a food revolution, right? How do revolutions occur? Not from above. National guidelines are important, but revolutions take place from the bottom up, from the roots, from the people. And what we can do, using the internet as a tool, is that we can connect people in different parts of the world like different nodes in a network. But we can also achieve mass communication of information.
Now, in the context of low carb, what does that mean? We’ve heard from Franziska, from Dr. Paulina, from Ricardo, about the science that is building up, the scientific data we are gathering that builds up more and more support for a low carb, high fat approach as an effective solution to the problem.
But what is it that we need to do now? Translate this scientific information in a way that is easily understood by the average person, to drive this movement forward, to support this revolution. That’s the first step, right? Education.
But we believe that that there is also a second step, that in our food environment it isn’t always easy to make a change. We are surrounded by junk food; simply having the knowledge is not always enough. We also want to take this simplicity and put it into practice, to simplify the information, but also simplify things practically, make it easy to implement a low carb lifestyle in your life, now, wherever you live.
Also, I think there is another step which is that, when we talk about nutrition, we talk about science; the science is stronger and stronger, it is clear now that low carb is the healthiest approach, but this is also about emotions, culture, habits. It’s not simply a question of “Oh, I know this is better so I’ll do it!” With nutrition it’s not like that. So there’s one more thing missing, and that is inspiration.
So, drawing on that basis what my boss did, Dr. Andreas Eenfeldt, a family doctor, in the year 2011 he launched Diet Doctor in English. And the purpose of Diet Doctor is to empower people everywhere to revolutionize their health. We define health as a spectrum of physical, mental and social wellbeing, not simply the absence of disease. We also say these are not just factors that are objectively measurable, but subjective feelings, too.
From this perspective, our mission, is to make low carb simple. Because we believe that this is the best way that we can contribute to improving people’s health. And at Diet Doctor- I’ll talk briefly about our values model. All the employees in our company know these very well.
It’s about simplicity, which I already described a bit.
It’s also about trustworthiness; There is so much information online now that it can be confusing. People don’t know which information to trust and which not. So giving a clear and understandable scientific base, showing that the information that we present, that we share, is trustworthy.
It’s also about inspiration. I don’t know if you know our site, but we really try to make it inspiring to eat low carb. Everyone says… not everyone, but a lot of people call it a restrictive way of eating. Not true! It’s delicious to eat low carb. And that is shown on our website, through our delicious recipes… It’s a form of gastronomy as well. Inspiring people. You’re not depriving yourself, you’re eating good, healthy food, you’re nourishing yourself.
And all this around one one central concept, which is goodness. Goodness towards ourselves and also towards others.
At Diet Doctor we’ve already helped hundreds of thousands of people to revolutionize their health. Last year we launched Diet Doctor in Spanish. We believe this is very important. A lot of the time, information is only shared in English, as though the scientific language is English, but it isn’t fair. We need more equality of information on a global scale. We have started with Spanish, we want to expand to more languages, but the next step for us is that right now we are launching the option of membership.
Membership is very importan to us, simply because we accept no money from industry, we remain impartial. We have no ads on the site, we sell no products, Diet Doctor is completely funded by the people. This is important, it’s part of our trustworthiness as a company, as a website as a source of information. We believe, more than anything, in collaboration. We want to support a global food revolution and this means working together.
Take me for example, I’m not a doctor or a scientist. We believe that everybody has their skill, their superpower, that they can bring to this movement. I’m an anthropologist, a journalist, and I still have my part to play in this. My colleagues, Jonatan, Simon, are part of the video team, they also have their part to play in this movement.
I truly believe, and we at Diet Doctor believe, that now is the time to stand up together, support each other, start to reverse what is truly a horror story, a global problem that we are suffering as a community, as a global society. And we are very hopeful that we can face it together.
I am so happy to be here. I am also so happy to see so many familiar faces in an audience, in a country… I’ve only been here for a week and there are so many people who have welcomed us here, who have supported us. I want you to know that Diet Doctor is here to support, to help communicate information. If you are a scientist and have data you want to share in Spanish on a global scale, please get in touch. If you are a doctor who is using low carb with your patients, please, get in touch. If you simply want to know more about low carbohydrate nutrition you can visit us, DietDoctor.com/es.
Thank you very much for listening. Thank you very much.
AboutRecorded at the “Y ahora ¿qué comemos? Low carb y la reivindicación de la grasa” (And now… what do we eat? low carb and fat acceptance) seminar in Santiago de Chile, November 2018.
Speaker: Kim Gajraj
Camera: Simon Victor and Jonatan Victor
Sound: Jonatan Victor
Editing: Simon Victor
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