Kuna Indian Secret

Kuna Indian Secret
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What do the Kuna Indians drink that may help account for their apparent low chronic disease rates?

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Of course, there are other healthy drinks, too. Consider the Kuna Indians, who live on islands off of Panama—one of the healthiest populations on Earth; 20 times less heart disease compared to us; 20 times less cancer. And it’s not their genes. When they move to the mainland and start eating a typical Western diet, their chronic disease rates skyrocket.

Scientists don’t think it’s what they eat, though, but what they drink. What’s their secret? Every day, they drink more than five cups of which one of these? Açai berry juice, cocoa, yerba maté tea out of a gourd, quechua—a fermented drink made out of quinoa sprouts, or, do you think they’re so healthy because they drink so much spirulina?

I’ll give you a hint: it’s not because they keep such adorable pigs as pets.

What do you think? Well, it’s not the quechua—because there’s no such thing. I just made that up. It’s not spirulina, and maté may actually increase our cancer risk.

Nearly all these people drink in this tropical climate is cup after cup of cocoa!

To see any graphs, charts, graphics, images, and quotes to which Dr. Greger may be referring, watch the above video. This is just an approximation of the audio contributed by veganmontreal.

Please consider volunteering to help out on the site.

Of course, there are other healthy drinks, too. Consider the Kuna Indians, who live on islands off of Panama—one of the healthiest populations on Earth; 20 times less heart disease compared to us; 20 times less cancer. And it’s not their genes. When they move to the mainland and start eating a typical Western diet, their chronic disease rates skyrocket.

Scientists don’t think it’s what they eat, though, but what they drink. What’s their secret? Every day, they drink more than five cups of which one of these? Açai berry juice, cocoa, yerba maté tea out of a gourd, quechua—a fermented drink made out of quinoa sprouts, or, do you think they’re so healthy because they drink so much spirulina?

I’ll give you a hint: it’s not because they keep such adorable pigs as pets.

What do you think? Well, it’s not the quechua—because there’s no such thing. I just made that up. It’s not spirulina, and maté may actually increase our cancer risk.

Nearly all these people drink in this tropical climate is cup after cup of cocoa!

To see any graphs, charts, graphics, images, and quotes to which Dr. Greger may be referring, watch the above video. This is just an approximation of the audio contributed by veganmontreal.

Please consider volunteering to help out on the site.

Image thanks to Angelfire/Virginia Hirons

Doctor's Note

Check out these videos on cocoa:
Dark Chocolate and Artery Function
A Treatment for Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
Fat Burning Via Flavonoids

And check out my other videos on cocoa

If you haven’t yet, you can subscribe to my videos for free by clicking here

23 responses to “Kuna Indian Secret

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    1. I suppose you could always follow through with it. Sprout Quinoa, ferment it and make a drink out of it. Perhaps it would have some really great properties. At any rate, the name is there, all you have to do is make it and it will no longer be non-existent.

    2. I thought it was funny and clever. Kind of wishing now that there WERE a fermented sprouted quinoa drink though lol. It just SOUNDS like it would be healthy…

  1. Dr. Michael G, how did they make their cocoa drinks? Mashed up cacao beans and boiled in water? How much did they have to drink? Why did they stop drinking cocoa when they moved to the mainland?

    1. Yeah how do you prepare this mysterious cocoa drink!? I’ve never heard of such a thing as a cocoa drink. Perhaps he should patent that too! Maybe they should send researchers to find out what the secret recipe is. Alas. I bet it would be really good on a cold winters day with marshmallows in it….. But the world will never know!

      1. Humor aside, I bet that they don’t alkalize the cocoa. I think there’s a video showing you lose 3/4 of the benefits when you alkalyze.

        1. Yes, that’s what I read — that the original cocoa that keeps them healthy is not alkalized. They keep drinking it on the mainland, but that cocoa is processed and so their disease rates skyrocket, as he said. I’m a bit surprised this info was not in the video…

  2. Dear Doctor,

    Firs of all thank’s for everything. You’re my favarite doc.

    My name’s Farrukh. I’m from Azerbaijan -former Soviet union muslim state.

    I had serious skin and digestion problems from about 20 years old. Now I’m 39.

    Two years ago I started raw vegan diet and after about a year skin in my hands and both corners of lips began to scratch and got red and dry. Once I got unconscious.

    During this period I had to stopped my diet for vegetarian or vegan diet for some times and then again raw. I hate any meat. Because I think Raw is the best diet.I ate green smoothies every morning.
    But i think I made a mistake.

    My last Raw diet practice lasted 3 weeks until the day before yesterday. I stopped because of stool retention and the same skin problems. Seems lack of B group vitamins. I began to eat cooked vegan foods for 2 days and a have higher temprature and headaches.
    I don’t know what to do. Do you think cooked vegetables, beans and grains are not dangerous.
    What diet i must keep continue. What diet is perfect for me.
    You’re the only one doctor and nutrition expert that i really beleive in.
    Look forward to hearing from you. Sorry for my weak english.

    1. Don’t follow a fed strict diet bro. Instead eat what your ancestors were eating (your genes are targeted to process that way) and then on top of it add more servings of vegetables and fruits. You should be fine. Don’t go in any extreme direction as far as diet is concerned.

    2. Cracked skin, namely in the corners of the lips, is a sign of deficiency of certain nutrients. I wouldn’t have abandoned your plant based diet (remember vegan is not just a diet, it’s a way of living justly and compassionately) but instead broadened it and adjusted it. Plant based/vega doesn’t automatically mean healthy. You want to make sure you’re eating the right foods and right amounts. Being 100% raw has its downfalls as some of the healthiest things on the planet and most nutritious, are beans and legumes. You miss out on other things when you’re 100% raw. Still, some people are very healthy eating 100% raw, but you have to make sure you understand how to get all the things in your diet you need. And everyone’s body is different. Some people may have difficulties absorbing certain nutrients compared to others, so cooked veggies and beans/legumes could be very helpful.
      Anyone in your type of situation should try to include the array of foods Dr. Greger recommends. I highly recommend the book “How Not To Die” as this would be a helpful guide. And I also think it would be beneficial for you or anyone in your situation to get blood work done. But don’t blame the plant based eating on any short comings or ailments. One can be (and most often is) deficient in so many things on an “omnivorous” diet as well. Sadly we have to relearn how to eat optimally because we’ve all been lied to our entire lives for someone else’s gain.

      If you weren’t taking any form of B12, you may have been suffering from a serious B12 deficiency.

    3. Farrukh, I hope you’ve been doing better since this comment! I just wanted to add one more thing… you ask if beans are safe, and the answer is YES, not only are they safe, but they are one of the healthiest things you can, and should eat. Those who consume beans and legumes (such as lentils) live longer and healthier lives. Dr. Greger is a huge advocate for beans and legumes. This should be a regular part of your diet. It is dangerous to fear cooked foods. And please do take a B12 supplement if you haven’t already started to. A B complex vitamin might be helpful to you as well. Vitamin D supplements are safe and good too. I hope you found the answers you were looking for.

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