98-year-old retired heart surgeon Dr. Ellsworth Wareham credits his health and longevity to his vegan diet. The surgeon changed his diet mid-life after learning that animal protein raises cholesterol. Although he retired from operating in the surgical unit at Loma Linda University Medical Center at age 74, Wareham mentored and assisted residents there until the age of 95. Residing in Loma Linda, California, Wareham was one of the earliest doctors to practice open heart surgery in the United States, and the first at Loma Linda University, whose cardiothoracic surgery program is ranked among the top heart hospitals in the United States.
The city of Loma Linda has a very large Seventh-Day Adventist population and living a healthy lifestyle is the faith’s main ideal. The town has banned smoking, and alcohol is scarcely sold. As a result, Loma Linda is the only so-called “Blue Zone” of the U.S., an area where men and women live measurably longer lives than the average American.
Ellsworth stated, “Veganism is a very fine form of nutrition. It’s a little extreme to tell a person who is using flesh foods that you’re going to take everything entirely away from them. When I was in practice in medicine, I would tell the patients that the vegetable based diet was the healthy way to go, and to keep away from the animal products as much as possible. People are very sensitive about what they eat. You can talk to people about exercising, relaxation, good mental attitude and they will accept that. But you talk to them about what they are eating, people are very sensitive about that. If an individual is willing to listen, I will try to explain to them on a scientific basis of how I think it’s better for them.”
Watch the video below to reveal Dr. Ellsworth’s secret to living a happy and healthy vegan life.
UPDATE: Dr. Wareham is now 102 years old.
Plant-based diets are growing more popular as time goes on. Vegan activist Markus RothKranz created a documentary showing the benefits a vegan diet had on seven different women.