Dr. Andrew Weil is at the forefront of a restaurant revolution that seeks to fuse nutritious food and fine dining.
The Harvard-educated doctor’s bestselling books have introduced many to the philosophy of “integrative medicine, ” a combination of conventional and alternative medicine that was first popularized by Weil, and has since become somewhat of a phenomenon in the world of health, CCTV America said.
A healthy diet is a central aspect of integrative medicine, and according to Weil, the mainstream American diet, made up of processed and manufactured foods, causes chronic inflammation in the body that can lead to a multitude of diseases, the report said.
“Containing inappropriate inflammation seems to be the best overall strategy for maximum longevity and health, ” said Weil, according to the report. “There are a lot of influences on inflammation: genetics, stress, exposure to environmental toxins – but diet has a huge influence.
“And I think there’s no question that the mainstream diet in North America favors inflammation and gives us the wrong kind of fats, the wrong kinds of carbohydrates, and not enough of the protective elements that are found mostly in fruits and vegetables, herbs and spices.”
So Weil created the anti-inflammatory diet, a reimagined food pyramid which recommends focusing meals on fiber-rich fruits and vegetables, oily fish, and healthy fats like extra virgin olive oil and nuts, the report said.
When Weil met restaurateur Sam Fox, the concept for a healthy fine dining restaurant was born. Fox was skeptical at first, but after a home-cooked meal by Weil, he was convinced that healthy food could be delicious, according to CCTV.
In October of 2008, the first True Food Kitchen opened in Phoenix, Arizona. The menu is based on the anti-inflammatory diet and draws inspiration from Mediterranean, Asian and Californian cuisine. The enormous success of the Phoenix location prompted Fox and Dr. Weil to expand the concept nationally, the report said.
Even though Fox had been in the restaurant business a long time, he told Weil he had never seen anything like the reaction to True Food Kitchen: “He’d never had people from all over the country begging him to open one of these, ” Weil said, according to CCTV. “He’d never had a restaurant where people would come in and eat dinner four and five times a week, the same people. So I think we’ve hit on a really good concept that people like.”
On this week’s episode of CCTV’s Full Frame, Mike Walter met with the holistic health guru at a recently opened location of True Food Kitchen near Washington, D.C., to discuss the benefits of an anti-inflammatory diet – and to get a taste of Weil’s cooking, the report said.