An interview with Dr. Oz by Nell Alk. Photo #2: SPE, Inc/Dave Allocca.
Everyone’s favorite sunglasses-donning, suit-wearing, alien-regulating duo returns to the big screen today in Men In Black 3 and Wednesday night marked the star-studded domestic premiere in NYC. We had a chance to chat with a few folks from the film, but one guest in particular took priority—Dr. Mehmet Oz. Cardiothoracic surgeon, teaching professor at Columbia University, and, of course, host of hit TV program The Dr. Oz Show, the good doctor slipped us in between other appointments to quickly share his professional opinion about lax nutrition training in the medical field and the health merits of veganism.
Your show has touted a plant-based diet for health reasons. Are you a vegan yourself?
[My wife] Lisa is vegetarian and she’s been vegan in the past. I don’t eat much meat, but I do eat a little bit.
We hear a lot of stories from people who say their doctor discourages them from going vegan, but we’ve also heard that most general practitioners only receive a few hours of nutrition-specific training. Can you speak to that?
It’s very true. Nutrition is taught at the very end of your class time and you’re not even paying attention. So we need to put nutrition back in med school. It was there a long time ago; we’ve forgotten about it.
What would you say to other doctors out there who think veganism is inherently unhealthy?
Most doctors wouldn’t think that if they knew anything about nutrition. People who are vegan or vegetarian usually live longer. So there’s a health benefit to it. What I think more about is: how accessible is it? Can you really do it? I think you can, we just need to teach people how to eat a little differently in order to achieve that.
What’s your favorite vegan restaurant in New York City?
Candle 79. I love it!