Join Blinkist to get the key ideas from
Get the key ideas from
Get the key ideas from

Undo It!

How Simple Lifestyle Changes Can Reverse Most Chronic Diseases

By Anne Ornish and Dean Ornish
  • Read in 15 minutes
  • Audio & text available
  • Contains 9 key ideas
Upgrade to Premium Read or listen now
Undo It! by Anne Ornish and Dean Ornish

Undo It! (2019) reveals the astonishing power of making simple lifestyle changes that can not just prevent, but even reverse a wide range of chronic diseases. That might sound like wishful thinking, but it’s backed by a rich array of research that has been published in peer-reviewed scientific journals and reflects a growing consensus within the mainstream medical community.

Key idea 1 of 9

There’s a growing scientific and medical consensus that lifestyle changes can prevent and reverse chronic diseases.

With so much conflicting medical advice out there, and with so many quacks, grifters and charlatans dispensing it, you’d be justified in feeling skeptical toward yet another miracle cure-all. That’s especially true of the lifestyle medicine program outlined in these blinks, which claims to be able to prevent and reverse serious chronic diseases through simple lifestyle changes. However, there’s a significant body of scientific evidence and a growing consensus in the medical community that lifestyle programs in general, and this one in particular, are effective.

Let’s start with the evidence. To begin with, the research on which the authors have based their program has been published in peer-reviewed medical journals such as the Journal of the American Medical Association.

Even more impressive is the evidence on which the authors’ stake the program’s efficacy. They have collected clinical outcomes data from tens of thousands of patients from a variety of socioeconomic, ethnic and age groups.

Studies by the author and other scientific investigators have demonstrated that the program can stop, slow or reverse a wide range of chronic diseases, including severe coronary heart disease, type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, obesity, early-stage non-aggressive prostate cancer, depression, anxiety and certain types of autoimmune conditions and early-stage dementia.

The program has also been embraced by a number of American hospitals, clinics, physician groups, commercial and governmental healthcare insurance providers, and leading figures of the medical community, such as the director of the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute of the National Institutes of Health.

For those who have followed recent developments in the field of medicine, all of this enthusiasm and evidence in favor of a lifestyle program may come as no surprise. The field is in the midst of a significant shift in thinking about chronic diseases – changing its focus from expensive, cutting-edge drugs and surgery to the low-cost power of lifestyle changes.

That’s not to pooh-pooh drugs and surgery, which often provide necessary, lifesaving remedies for chronic diseases, especially when they lead to emergencies like heart attacks. But there is growing evidence that lifestyle changes can be more effective than drugs alone in treating many of the chronic diseases already mentioned. That evidence comes from studies and findings published by highly respected sources, such as the Harvard School of Public Health, the Finnish Diabetes Prevention Study Group and the Mayo Clinic.

Upgrade to continue Read or listen now

Key ideas in this title

Upgrade to continue Read or listen now

Learn more, live more

Sign up now to learn and grow every day with the key ideas from top nonfiction and podcasts in 15 minutes.