Are you living toward a healthy retirement? Far too many people retire, needing to take five to 20 medications a day for health conditions that could have easily been prevented. It doesn’t have to be that way, in nature, when things are imbalanced, there is no disease.
In his new book, Healthy Dad Sick Dad, Dr. Glen N. Robison shares his personal journey with two very similar fathers who ended up in drastically different retirements. Determined to understand why Dr. Robison studied his healthy father’s lifestyle and emulated it for 15 years with dramatic improvements to his own health.
Now, he’s ready to share the secrets of living a long, healthy life. Start living today for your greatest asset, you, and look forward to a retirement you’ll love.
Drew Appelbaum: Hey Listeners, my name is Drew Applebaum and I’m excited to be here today with Glen Robison, author of Healthy Dad, Sick Dad: What Good is Your Health if You Don’t Have Your Health? Glen, thank you for joining, welcome to The Author Hour Podcast.
Dr. Glen N. Robison: Nice to be here.
Drew Appelbaum: Let’s kick this off, Glen, can you give us a rundown of your professional background?
Dr. Glen N. Robison: I’m a podiatrist, so I do clinical work and surgical work. I’ve been in practice for a little over 21 years and there’s a variety within my specialty, from surgery to dermatology to pediatrics to geriatrics, to all sorts of flavors that you would find within the foot and ankle. I have leaned more towards the more natural approaches to treating the structure of the body over the last, 15 years and this is probably what led me into putting all this information that I’ve learned into a book.
The Foundation Is Nutrition
Drew Appelbaum: Why was now the time to share these stories in the book? Was there an “aha moment” recently, something inspiring, did a hundred people come up to you and say, “Glen, you got to put this in a book.”
Dr. Glen N. Robison: There wasn’t really an “aha moment” it was probably just the course of my journey–if you go back some 18 years ago, I was in a position where I was facing a crisis. My lower back had gone out, I had a family, kids I had to support, no health insurance, and starting a practice because I was in private practice.
Some of the luxuries of life, you have to compensate, and one of those luxuries that most people would call luxuries is health insurance. I didn’t have that. I stumbled upon this venture and got my back all fixed with no injections, no surgeries, and there were many multiple levels on this journey.
The main one, this book in particular is the foundation, is nutrition. So, I had to go through that in order to get to where I’m at. Over the course of years when I started to implement this with my patients and started seeing patients get better and having profound experiences, especially people coming in pain and leaving the office without any pain and having it maintained and retained, and then seeing the course of my diabetics or patients that had fungal toenails, and changing their diet and it changed them completely.
I asked my healthy dad if I could put everything together and write a book. Finally, I think it’s about 15 years of extensive study and training, and I was given the permission to put all this data in there because having gone through medical school, this was never taught to me. This was very eye-opening to me. I talk a little bit about what really changed me is when my daughter was injured. So, I have this great opportunity now to put a little bit that I know into a book and hopefully, it will continue to help other people.
Drew Appelbaum: You decided to put pen to paper and write this book and you probably had an idea of what you were going to write but a lot of times, authors, during the writing process, just by digging deeper into some of the subjects or by doing research, you come to some major breakthroughs and learnings. Did you have any of these major breakthroughs or learnings during your writing journey?
Dr. Glen N. Robison: Absolutely. Being a student and having gone through modern medicine and medical school and surgical residencies, I mean, you should see my stack of notebooks, I have notes I’ve taken over the course of the years. The same rings true with this study. I have countless notes, I have countless articles, I have countless books that I’ve read.
My first challenge was asking the right questions for the book. The second was to go through all that material over the course of 15 years of stacks of papers and finding out the important things. This is not a huge, thick book that’s going to scare somebody away.
There are definitely some “aha moments.” One with myself, one with my daughter, countless numerous patients that had come into my office–from a little child that had hip dysplasia and one foot was turned completely, almost at a 90-degree angle from the other foot, and a simple manipulation set her hip back in place and then she walked straight. I followed up a year later and she was still walking straight and that changed the course of that little girl’s life.
Some of them were diabetics and actually took hold of the information about the way to eat and seeing their blood sugars come down, and regaining their life, and starting to live with very enjoyable movement and exercising the life that they’ve always wanted. Yeah, there were definitely some “aha moments.” I’m sure I could think of quite a few of them if I had the time.
A Book for Everyone
Drew Appelbaum: When you sat down to write the book, who were you writing it for in your mind? Healthy Dad Sick Dad is the title, is this for older gentlemen, younger gentlemen, can women have takeaways from the book as well?
Dr. Glen N. Robison: When I first started writing, I thought I was writing to my brother who was in his 50s and looking at retirement, and as I was sitting in a Scribe class for the three-day course, I thought that was the person I was writing to, but actually it was myself. I was writing to me, the college student in my 20s. I was fit, I was a former wild line firefighter.
I was very energetic, athletic, just liked sports. I had my little illnesses such as asthma and things like that, but when I hit medical school and I started to eat things that did not necessarily do me good, over a course of time, it changed me. I’m writing the book for me at 20 years old, and hopefully, it resonates with all these college-aged students out there that were in the same boat I was that their health is great, they don’t think anything’s wrong with them, but then they hit their 30s and 40s and things start creeping up.
The book is for everyone, really. It’s male, female, people that are approaching retirement and saying “Hey, look, I want to enjoy retirement, I want to travel, I want to continue to exercise, and I don’t want to be on all these medications, I don’t want to be stuck on that wheelchair, I don’t want a cane.”
There’s a saying, movement is life.
Drew Appelbaum: Let’s also get this out of the way before we dive into the book. Do you want to talk about what’s not in the book?
Dr. Glen N. Robison: There’s a lot of things not in the book. I don’t discuss cancer. I leave it for those that are the authorities in that who naturally are medical. The book is though, designed that if you follow the principles, you probably won’t get cancer. But I don’t talk about that stuff. I’ll bring this up, there’s a big issue right now, of vaccination, not vaccination, especially with COVID, but around childhood vaccinations.
There are so many profound authorities out there that could explain more, so I put my two little cents and bits in the book, but I leave it up to the reader. So, if you’re looking for things like that, it’s not going to be in there. Those two main ones, which are just hot issues that I hear about every day.
Why Die It When You Can Live It?
Drew Appelbaum: Let’s dive into the book itself. There’s this question that I’m constantly asking. I think anyone who eventually finds proper nutrition if you want to call that later on in life, always ask themselves, “Why is nutritional education lacking in our education system and specifically, in higher education?”
Dr. Glen N. Robison: That’s a very good question and I wish I had an answer for that because I look back on my education and there is not a single course on nutrition. I mean, there is biochemistry, there is physiology and I’m sure that there’s maybe one chapter. I had my thesis, I wrote on in biochemistry and it was on chocolate, is it good for you, is it bad for you? That’s about the only experience I got in medical school on nutrition.
It’s sad because it is the foundation, it is the key to freedom of life, and that’s why I do not believe in diets because why die it when you can live it. I believe that you eat to live. Not eat to die.
Drew Appelbaum: What questions should listeners be asking themselves to really find out if they’re living a “healthy life?”
Dr. Glen N. Robison: Well, looking back on it, there was really no question to me until the little subtle things started happening. The first time I got a kidney stone was because, one, I was dehydrated, and two I was drinking root beer floats with Costco muffins. It is cheap, it is easy. I could scoff that down in five minutes and I’m back to studying.
Then, when that–not subtle, it’s a huge experience that mainly changed me. That’s usually the course that happens when that crisis hits, you start asking the questions. But I would tell the reader, if you’re thinking, “Oh, well, I’m not reading this.” Well, there’s a reason why you picked up this book.
You can jump to the very, very last chapter. I call it a whole life diet, it’s a chapter that is a diet for healthy people. These are the things you want to eat, these are the things you should avoid, these are the things that are going to keep you out of trouble. The key point I would say to the readers is to observe. Look at those around you, especially within your family, what are your mom and dad doing? I say that not in the sense of genetics. My grandpa died of diabetes but that does not mean that I have to be diabetic.
Do I have the diabetic gene? I have no idea, all I know is that type-two diabetes can be easily prevented and corrected. I just choose to eat properly, and I don’t have to worry about that. I would just say to observe and see those ailments that they have, and maybe you want to take a mental note and then say, “Okay, I don’t want that and what can I do to prevent that?”
What Is Wrong With Diets?
Drew Appelbaum: What’s wrong with many of the diets today? Are any of these fad diets that come through every few years, are any of them actually healthy?
Dr. Glen N. Robison: They are to a degree and they have their points but they’re short-lived. When I mention that, I’m by no means saying this is wrong or right but there are a lot out there I’m not going to mention, even but think of a diet and one that you’ve been on and one you haven’t.
You know the life value of that is about six months, depending on if you’re yin or yang. Let’s say you’re very strong and have a lot of energy, you kick your bedsheets off at night, you’re yang. When a yang person eats more yang, meaning that they eat a lot more meat and proteins, they’re going to get more agitated. They’re going to get angrier, they’re going to continue to get more inflamed.
Whereas on the other side, on the yin side–I go heavily into the book on this–let’s say a vegan who is weak and tired, but yet they get a cold. So, they want to eat a salad and that salad has always been good for them, but they continue eating these weak foods and it makes them weaker and sicker and sicker. So, there has to come to a balance and I think most diets out there don’t find the balance of life.
They have their extreme yin or their extreme yang. I think the one that I have found out there that’s really good, aside from what my healthy dad has introduced me to, is the Mediterranean diet. But you know, then you have heart congestions, you have diabetes, you have all these rheumatoid arthritic conditions, and then you have to curtail that. So, going on these diets that are short-lived, people are going to see results up to about six months or so.
Usually, they hit the plateau and then they crash. Then they get off it and they go find a new diet. Let’s just take, for instance, the immune diet. Somebody that is weak and tired, it’s a yin diet, so if I can get them up to a balanced stage, then they go onto the whole life diet, a diet that I’m on that I use the rest of my life.
Now, there are times where I fall off the whole life diet and I have to revert back to the immune diet, which is basically just cooking your food for better digestion. Getting off the sugar, staying away from a few of the things, and usually the immune diet is within days to not more than a couple of weeks. I would say if somebody has something like a fungal infection then they’re going to be on it a little bit longer.
I think that’s why most diets don’t work. They’re just short-lived.
Drew Appelbaum: I thought this was really interesting that you brought this up in the book. Can you go into a little bit more detail on how the actual organs in your body work together?
Dr. Glen N. Robison: I’ll bring up a classic example and I won’t go into all of them in detail, but let me just talk about the large intestine-lung relationship. The five elements, which is a chapter that talks about paired organs, meaning you have essential organs, then you have functional organs. The essential organs you need, you can’t live without them.
Getting back to the large intestine and lung, they work together. It’s a classic example. When I was in medical school working on cadavers and you’d have their certificate of what they died of. This was way before I was had any of this training and knowledge, I’d always notice that they had a blockage in their large intestine when they had a diagnosis of respiratory arrest, and that was in the back of my mind.
When I was implementing this into my practice, I had a patient that went into the emergency room, and they were going to put him into ICU. I asked the doctor, “When was the last time the patient had a bowel movement?” The doctor asked me, “Why?” I said, “Because if he’s constipated and he has a blockage in that large intestine, he’s going to have a backup in the lung, and it’s being expressed in the lung as respiratory distress. Once he has a bowel movement and things are flowing, then you’ll notice that his lungs start to clear up.”
He gave me a call and said, “Hey, you’re right on. The guy, had a bowel movement and so we got his intestines cleaned out and he wasn’t in the ICU unit for very long.”
There’re many other classic examples of this and so I always approach a respiratory problem that has to do with the lung, with the large intestine. The large intestine is out of balance and so, if you have a cough-cold-phlegm, well, everybody looks at the lungs to treat the lungs. You know you got to go down to the large intestine and saying, “Okay, are they constipated? Did they have a bowel movement? What types of food are going into that body? Is it heavily sugared and it’s inflaming the large intestine?”
Once you have established good bacteria in your intestinal lining and you have what I call the yogurt factory in your body functioning in a proper setting, with the right PH, with the right alkalinity, with the right temperature, then it’s amazing how people get over their respiratory problems just by treating the large intestine.
A Strong Immune System
Drew Appelbaum: Now, obviously having a strong immune system is key, I mean especially look at the way the world is right now. You never know what’s going to happen. What are some dos and don’ts that somebody can do to protect and help their immune system?
Dr. Glen N. Robison: I’ve not seen a book out there talk about it. I’ve not seen articles. But the key component right now, I would say, is your body temperature and that has a key component on your immune system. Your body temperature has to be at 98.6 for the immune system to really fully work in your intestinal lining. Something I notice with myself every time I walk into my clinic or somebody takes my temperature, if my temperature is down to 96.8 and 97.1, it’s an indication to me that’s saying, “Okay, I need to raise that up. I need to get that temperature up.”
Now, we’re so worried and scared about a fever temperature that’s greater than 101 and you do have to be careful of that, but you also have to have a body temperature to have a good immune system. Now, there are other factors that go beyond the foods we eat, the quality of the foods, the qualities of lard, the quality of air–we need but sleep, rest. There’s a lot of stuff that I talk about in the book especially the five elements chapter about emotions.
Emotions have a great, great effect on our immune system. Right now, everybody is fearful of what is going to happen tomorrow. We don’t know, and so that affects the kidney in a subtle way.
With the information in the book and if a reader chooses to pick it up and read it, be patient with it. It is not a book that is a quick read and then you’re done. It’s a book that you’ll pick up time and time again and use as a reference.
Drew Appelbaum: What can readers or listeners expect when they change their habits and start becoming the healthy dad, as you call it?
Dr. Glen N. Robison: What can they expect, it depends on their element. I expected a diabetic if they truly did the diabetic diet that I have in the book to come off their diabetic medication and be able to become diet controlled. The diabetics have to be careful because especially if you’re on insulin, you just really have to have follow-up with your primary doctor and make sure that everything is in check because you don’t want your sugars to drop really low.
The immune diet, I expect people to see within three to five days that they will start to have a stronger constitution. They feel better.
You asked me a question earlier about why diets don’t work. Well, everybody is different. Everybody is unique, and you may have a different blood type than somebody. You may have a different body frame than somebody. I have five other things that you look at and your constitution is completely different than somebody else.
As far as the book, I tried to keep it as simple as possible so the reader can just pick and choose information and start applying it.
Drew Appelbaum: Well Glen, we just touched on the surface of the book here but I want to say that writing a book that’s going to help so many folks clean up their nutrition and asking them to get healthy is no small feat, so congratulations on having your book published.
Dr. Glen N. Robison: Thank you so much.
Drew Appelbaum: I do have one question left. If readers could take away only one thing from the book, what would you want that one thing to be?
Dr. Glen N. Robison: What question do you have? What question? My life started with a question. Every great thing in life started with a question, and unless they’re willing to ask the questions about their health, they’re not willing to participate. There is a saying don’t ask don’t tell, the patients in my clinic that ask questions, which I love, they participate, they get better. They see results. The patients that sit back and just nod their heads and don’t really engage, I can help them but nothing like those that ask questions.
To the reader out there, develop your own questions. Develop a question, keep an open mind and allow the questions to flow, and when that question comes, write it down because that’s telling you something and that question needs to be answered somehow. That’s why I’ve written the book and that’s why I’m here to, help those that if I can ease of pain of what I had to go through and lessen it for others, that would be heaven to me.
Drew Appelbaum: Glen, this has been a pleasure and I’m excited for people to check out the book. Everyone, the book is called, Healthy Dad Sick Dad, and you can find it on Amazon. Glen, besides checking out the book, where can people connect with you?
Dr. Glen N. Robison: Right now, there should be a website called liveitlifestyles.com. I will have the diets posted there. Also, that will be a platform where they can ask questions and I can answer them. You have to understand this book is just the beginning point.
You will hear my passion in this book but wait until the second book. That is where I really, really, really am excited to talk about and we didn’t touch upon it today but that’s where life changes, but we have to start with the foundation of nutrition. We’ll see where this goes and I think there are probably four books in the making down the road, so who knows? We’ll see.
Drew Appelbaum: Well Glen, until we speak again for your next book, I want to say thank you for coming on today and best of luck with your book.
Dr. Glen N. Robison: Thank you so much.