Restore Metabolic Health At Any Age with Dr. William Li

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Show Notes

I’m thrilled to share another podcast and terrestrial radio show that I had the pleasure of co-hosting just over a week ago – and that’s Forever Young Radio Show. In this episode, you get to hear from a guest I’ve featured a few times before on this show – and that’s Dr. William Li – the 2x New York Times bestselling author of Eat To Beat Your Diet.

What You'll Learn: We zero in on his work as it relates to metabolic health and healthy aging. You’ll learn how our metabolism shifts as we age, and the role that body fat plays in metabolic health.

Why you need omega-3s! Dr. Li goes to healthy, whole foods first in every recommendation he makes – AND he also recommends that we all get more omega-3s. This is one of those supplements that he is definitely excited about. We even hosted an omega-3 masterclass on his YouTube channel. In that 20 minute session, we share why this important class of nutrients is so important, how it can help us resolve inflammation in our bodies, and even help restore our metabolic fire. Here's that YouTube link:

Additional Resources:
And for those of you that are just being introduced to Dr. William Li and his important work, I’m including links to past episodes in which I interviewed Dr. Li – and also the 4 week deep dive into a course he offers. I provide a summary of that experience over the course of 4 individual solocast episodes, all of which are linked below:

Eat To Beat Disease Interview:

Week 1:

Week 2:

Week 3:

Week 4:

Eat To Beat Your Diet Interview:

The pioneering physician scientist behind the New York Times bestseller Eat to Beat Disease reveals the science of eating your way to healthy weight loss. In his first groundbreaking book, Dr. William Li explored the world of food as medicine. By eating foods that you already enjoy, like tomatoes, blueberries, sourdough bread, and dark chocolate your body activates its five health defense systems to fight cancer, diabetes, cardiovascular, neurodegenerative autoimmune diseases, and other debilitating conditions.

Now in Eat to Beat Your Diet, Dr. Li introduces the surprising new science of weight loss, revealing healthy body fat can help you lose weight; your metabolism at 60 can be the same as when you were 20; yo-yo dieting can be good for your health; 8-hour fasting windows can be as effective as 12-hour fasting windows; and losing just a little bit of weight can have big impacts on your health. Eat to Beat Your Diet shows readers how adding the right foods to your diet can heal your metabolism, reduce unhealthy body fat, and result in the kind of weight loss that can increase your lifespan and help you thrive.

For more great episodes of Forever Young Radio Show, find it on your favorite podcasting platform, or visit:

To find out more about Dr. William Li and his great work visit:


Restore Metabolic Health At Any Age with Dr. William Li, New York Times Bestselling Author of Eat To Beat Your Diet

Corinna Bellizzi: Welcome to Nutrition Without Compromise. I’m your host Corinna Bellizzi. Today, I’m thrilled to share another podcast and terrestrial radio show that I had the pleasure of co-hosting just over a week ago – and that’s Forever Young Radio Show.

In this episode, you get to hear from a guest I’ve featured a few times before on this show – and that’s Dr. William Li – the 2x New York Times bestselling author of Eat To Beat Disease and Eat To Beat Your Diet.

In this episode, we zeroed in on his work as it relates to metabolic health and healthy aging. You’ll learn how our metabolism shifts as we age, and the role that body fat plays in metabolic health. Dr. Li helps us understand this complex issue, gives us simple tips for how we can change our health habits to trim our waistlines, and achieve our health goals.

A couple of things to note as you listen to this interview. Dr. Li goes to healthy, whole foods first in every recommendation he makes – AND he also recommends that we all get more omega-3s. This is one of those supplements that he is definitely excited about. So much so in fact, that he and I hosted an omega-3 masterclass on his YouTube channel. Together in that 20 minute session, we got to dive into why this important class of nutrients is so important, how it can help us resolve inflammation in our bodies, and even help restore our metabolic fire.

And for those of you that are just being introduced to Dr. William Li and his important work, I invite you to visit our show notes on whatever platform you’re using to listen to today’s show. I’m including links to past episodes in which I interviewed Dr. Li – and also the 4 week deep dive into a course he offers. I had the pleasure of taking that course, and I provided a summary of that experience over the course of 4 individual solocast episodes.

So check our show notes for links to each of these episodes on our website, And if you haven’t already given our omegas a shot, there’s no time like the present. Listen in to the Orlo Nutrition commercials in today’s episode for an unbeatable offer.

Without further ado, here’s the interview.  

Kelly Cappasola: Hello, everyone. So glad you could join us today right here on Forever Young. If it's the first time you've come across our show, whether it be on the traditional radio dial, Sirius XM, or any of our wonderful podcast platforms, thank you so much for joining us and finding us today.

We've been on the air well over 25 years and we show up each and every week with the hopes of informing and educating every listener on healthier lifestyle options and good quality science-based information. If you'd like to learn more about the program, it's very easy to do so. You can visit our website at forever young radio.

com again, forever young radio. com. There we have over 480 podcast episodes ranging on a variety of different topics, uh, including one of the ones we're going to be covering today with a very special first-time guest. And boy, we've been excited about this. And we're going to be talking about polyphenols, diet fails, and potentially how you can eat.

to beat your diet. I have a special cohost joining me today. Today. That is Corinna Bellizzi, our good friend who's been coming on the show for well over a decade and a half. Wonderful to have you today, Karina. Thank you for joining me.

Corinna Bellizzi: Oh, this is just my sincere pleasure. I get to introduce one of my favorites! It's just such a joy to connect with him every time and to be on your show. Thank you so much.

Kelly Cappasola:  I actually was able to tune in to one of your podcast episodes that you do, through Orlo Nutrition, Nutrition Without Compromise. And I was able to listen to a program that you did together.

And I said, Corinna, you do me a favor, call Dr. Li, get him on the show. So without further ado, let's get started. Corinna, please tell our listeners, who are they going to have the special treat of getting to hear today?

Corinna Bellizzi: Well, Dr. William Li is someone who really deserves a grand introduction. He is an internationally renowned physician.

He's a scientist and author of the New York Times bestsellers, eat to beat disease. The new science of how your body can heal itself. And also his more recent book, eat to beat your diet. His groundbreaking research has led to the development of more than 30 new medical treatments that impact care for more than 70 diseases, including all the big ones, diabetes, blindness, heart disease, obesity.

His TED talk, Can We Eat to Starve Cancer, has garnered more than 11 million views. So, Dr. Lee has been in all sorts of media, from Good Morning America, to CNN, to CNBC, to all the big podcasts. And he has been featured in USA Today, Time Magazine, The Atlantic, and even O Magazine. He's president and medical director of the Angiogenesis Foundation, and he is leading global initiatives on food as medicine.

So I'm just thrilled to have him here today. I think we should just bring him right up and say, welcome to the show, Dr. Li.

Dr. William Li: Hey guys, thank you so much for having me. It's a pleasure to be here, uh, Kelly, nice to talk to you again and Corinna.

Kelly Cappasola: Oh, it's truly our pleasure. Thank you for carving out the time. We know you're very busy with all the things you're doing out there to be able to help people and you know, as a first time guest, Dr. Li, I know in the next segment we're going to get more in depth about our topic today, but just a little bit curious when we start talking to somebody for the first time, what kind of led you down this path? Did you always know you wanted to become a physician, a scientist? Tell us our listeners just a little bit more about yourself.

Dr. William Li: You know, so I am a doctor. I was always interested in helping people to stay, stay well and to help people overcome illness, but I'm really a scientist and, and I have always been fascinated by science, and the creativity of science. A lot of people don't appreciate how creative really good scientists are.

I grew up in a family where my dad was a scientist and my mom actually was an artist. She was a pianist, um, the head of a music department. So I grew up right brain, left brain, went to medical school and came out the other end. I'm really interested in figuring out how I could be creative as a scientist to be able to help people get better.

Kelly Cappasola: That's just awesome. And boy, what a fun childhood, to kind of be brought up into because you're getting kind of the best of both worlds, like you said, left brain, right brain. And then what kind of drove you to want to be able to connect with more people and become an author and not just any author, but a bestseller?

Dr. William Li: So my work was originally in my career, started at figuring out how do we develop better treatments for cancer and vision loss, diabetes and wound healing. And a lot of it was biotech in nature. I have done lots of publications and book chapters and spoken from the stage to medical audiences. But when I started studying food as medicine about 15 years ago, what I realized is that what we were discovering about food has immediacy for people.

And I didn't need to wait the 10 years it would take for. A new treatment to be developed. And so that's why I started to write books. People love to read. They love to absorb. They now like to listen to podcasts and it's just an incredible way to have an impact.

Kelly Cappasola: Absolutely. And it's a way for consumers to easily understand things a little bit better.

Um, I think sometimes all this great information comes out, but as consumers, they don't really know how to decipher the understanding of it because. Maybe they're not in the field that you came from, or other doctors or other scientists. So really, really love what you're doing and look forward when we return from break to really talk about what you think about metabolism.

But in the meantime, I want our listeners to go and check out your website over the break. That is And we also have put this on our weekly highlight page at forever young radio dot com. So if you want to go and check that out over the break, learn a little bit more about his great works and the wonderful books that are being put out.

We'll tell you later in the show how you can go ahead and purchase a copy. I've been able to give these as gifts, um, which is really great because sometimes people won't expect it and they'll read it and it'll change their life. So stay with us. We'll be right back on your health here on Forever Young.


Kelly Cappasola: Welcome back listeners. Again, being joined by a very special guest today, Dr. William Li. Now, Dr. Li, again, thank you so much for taking the time. I wanted to ask you a very specific question because this can go either way, depending on who you ask as a researcher and doctor, really, how do you view metabolism?

Dr. William Li: You know, metabolism is a topic that we all think we know something about. Uh, you know, who doesn't associate a slow metabolism with weight gain or a fast metabolism with somebody who's thin? Uh, and we always stress over our metabolism because we want more energy, particularly as we age. So this is a topic that Um, you know, the medical textbooks and Wikipedia pretty much have the same definition.

Metabolism is sort of the net sum of energy, chemical reactions in a body to power your cells, et cetera, et cetera, et cetera. I came to look at metabolism in a very different way. I wanted to know how the body is wired, hardwired to be able to how to take in fuel from our food and how to convert that into energy so that we can actually go about our way.

That operational definition of metabolism is actually something very useful to have because then we can um begin figure out how do we help our own metabolism? And there've been some recent research studies that pretty much upend everything that we thought was true. Turns out to be a myth.

Corinna Bellizzi: This is so interesting to me, Dr.Li, because in prior conversations, it seems that Metabolic health is partly dictated by how much body fat we have as we get a little bit older, which would be part of the reason that as we battle the bulge, we have a harder time battling the bulge. So how can you help people better understand that?

Dr. William Li: All right, look, uh. I want people to, understand metabolism in a new way, think about our body as a car. And if you're driving a car, the metabolism is really how the car uses the fuel in your gas tank to power the engine. You don't think about it at all when you're actually going from getting your car and driving from your home to the store, for example, but you do think a lot about it when the gas tank, the fuel tank reads low. All of a sudden you focus on where can I go to the filling station to get more fuel so I don't run out and our bodies. Metabolism really runs the same way are we are hardwired to be able to actually take in fuel. Our fuel.doesn't come from a, uh, a gas station pump. It comes from the refrigerator. It comes from the restaurant, from the pantry. Food is our fuel. We don't call it gallons. We call it calories. And when we actually eat food, um, our body converts the food that we're eating into energy. And that energy is stored in our gas tanks.

Now our car has a fuel tank on one side, usually the driver's side. And it's very rigid. And when you fill up the fuel tank in your car, you fill it up to the top. And all of a sudden the nozzle goes, click, no more gas comes out. The fuel gauge reads full and you're all set. You get back in the car and you drive away.

In our bodies, when we actually sit down to eat our fuel that we're putting into our body gets loaded into our fuel tanks. But in our body, our fuel tanks are actually. are fat cells. We call them adipose cells technically, but they are, um, uh, you know, millions of these little tiny cells that can swell up with the energy from our food.

Now, that makes a lot of sense so that when you eat overeat, your fat cells are going to get a lot bigger. But the key is our body. Once it's filled up and you stop eating, our body will start to burn that fat down, just like the car, um, getting back on the road by the highway and you put the pedal to the metal, um, uh, and you'll start to burn that fuel down and pretty soon you're going to need to fill up again.

That's how I think about metabolism. And that hardwiring it turns out is exactly the same in all people from the time they're born because of how our body is hardwired. Nobody's born with a fast metabolism and a slow metabolism and you can blame your parents and there's nothing else you can do about it.

We're all born exactly the same way, like the operating system of a laptop you pull out of a box.

Kelly Cappasola: Wow. That is so interesting. And you explained it eloquently to a point where I think people have never looked at it that way. You know, they think, Hey, you know, my parents were both overweight. I may have this disposition, but, uh, wonderfully said.

And you know, Corinna had shared with me a piece of research that came out of Duke university. I believe it was in August, 2021. Can you share a little bit more on that study, uh, for the listeners? Cause I think it'll be very helpful for them to be able to understand it.

Dr. William Li: Yeah, Corinna and I talked about this before.

This is a study, um, by a researcher named Herman Ponzer who worked with 90 other research colleagues from 20 countries and he studied 6,000 people. So this is an enormously large research study, unusually large, in which the question they were asking is what is human metabolism looking like across the lifespan?

What do I mean by lifespan? This research study enrolled 6,000 people that range in age. From one week old, that's newborns all the way to 90 years old. That's really a tail end of life. And what they did is they studied everybody's metabolism in the exact same way. They gave him a drink of water. Now you're saying, how does water help you tell metabolism?

Well, these researchers. Chemically tweaked the water, which is H2O, hydrogen and oxygen, they tweaked it so that the hydrogen and oxygen, um, could be detected, uh, using a special scanner. And so, by drinking that water, the metabolism, uh, works on and processes the hydrogen and oxygen and you can measure the metabolism, person's metabolism by their breath.

By blood test or by their urine. And when they looked at this group, looked at 6,000 people across 20 countries and gave them a drink of water to look at what their metabolism from, from one week old to 90 years old. Um, and you got to remember, these are people who, um, both men and women across different ages, and they came from different cultures, different foods, different lifestyles, different professions.

What do you think they've saw the results initially? Was that the metabolism was all over the map, just like you'd expect no rhyme or reason. Right? Wrong. What they did next is they continued the research by saying, we know how tall every individual is. We know what their gender is. And we know what their weight is.

So let's go ahead and use supercomputing to figure out how much extra body fat they were carrying based on their weight for their size and their gender. And let's subtract that out for 6, 000 people. So from all these results that were all over the map, they removed the effect of excess body fat. That's key, removing excess body fat.

And when they did that, The results were completely different. It was like pulling the cloak off the statue of David for their first time. These researchers saw that human metabolism across the lifespan all fell into four stages from zero to one years old, from one to 20, from 20 to 60, and from 60 to 90, that's our operating system.

That's what we're like pulled out of the box and everything that we do to our life. How we live, our lifestyle, the patterns, the behaviors we have all influence whether or not we stick with that optimal pattern, whether we improve that, we kind of optimize that optimal pattern, or whether we actually crush that pattern to slow down our metabolism.

Corinna Bellizzi: So I think this may have piqued the curiosity of the entire audience here, because, you know, you may have this sense I'm in my thirties or forties or even fifties. And gosh, it really seems like my metabolism is operating slower. I feel like I'm as active as I was before. You know, what other issues may really be impacting metabolism?

If it isn't just body fat, is there something else that's perhaps playing into this story?

Dr. William Li: Well, so first of all, the research results show that when you remove body fat, you actually find out that your inner metabolism is, becomes clear and rises to the surface. So that's one reason to control body fat.

When they added the fat body fat back in, guess what? It crushed the metabolism and lowered the metabolism. So it's not that a slow metabolism caused you to gain body fat. It's cause it's that extra body fat. Actually slows your metabolism. The flip, the script is flipped. However, it's not just body fat.

There's many things that cause us to gain body fat. For example, uh, these are lifestyle factors. If you are stressed, and many of us as we get older into our middle ages are more and more stressed, more stressed than perhaps we were in our 20s or in our teens, um, stress actually causes us to gain more body fat.

Stress also causes us to make poorer choices when we have obvious choices that are healthier. Sometimes we choose a less healthy choice, um, in terms of the food that we eat. Exercise. If you don't burn energy, those, the fuel in your fuel tank, if you just let the car, uh, sit in your driveway and you're not ever driving it to burn that fuel, that's exercise.

What's going to happen if you keep on putting more fuel in the gas tank, you're going to overflow the tank, right? Same thing when you overeat and you don't exercise. And then there's sleep. It turns out the good quality sleep. Okay. Not only helps to lower stress, but it helps to streamline your metabolism because while we are sleeping, we are fasting, not eating.

And while we're fasting, our body clicks into gear to start burning down extra fuel stored in our fuel tank. So good sleep, lowering stress, staying physically active with exercise and making good healthy choices with our food. These are all the things that conspire as we get older, 20s to 30s, 30s to 40s.

40s to 60s. Look, 20 to 60 as adults, our metabolism is hardwired to be rock stable, flat, but yet all these life stressors that we don't take care of, that we're only beginning to realize now how important they are, they can conspire to help us grow extra body fat that then crushes down our metabolism. So we got to work on all of these things together.



Kelly Cappasola: We'll be right back after the break. 


Kelly Cappasola: Welcome back, listeners. Again, we're getting a whole different perspective on things like metabolism. Really, it's very interesting. I think over the years, even Corinna and I have done shows on fat and people being very confused. Maybe it's about the fat they're consuming, about different fats in our food. Kind of, you know, becoming a little bit fat phobic.

But I know that you've spoken on the point of how Maybe healthy body fat can even help people be motivated or the body to encourage to lose weight. Would you mind maybe talking about that a little bit with the listeners? 

Dr. William Li: Yeah. You know, we all actually associate, um, the idea of quote fat unquote as being something undesirable or unhealthy.

I mean, how many of us have actually stepped out of the shower naked in the morning? And while we're drying off, we look into the corner of our eye and see the mirror and see a lump or a bump that we didn't want to be there, didn't expect. And then we curse and get pissed off. Then we set up a scale and that number isn't what we want.

And that's really kind of a negative thing. Or how many of us go into the grocery store and whether you're a, uh, a vegetarian or a vegan, you probably still wheel by the butcher section and you see this gigantic white rind of fat, you know, on a steak. And you go, Oh my God, geez, I don't want to be eating that.

I hope nobody is that right. So we're programmed to think about it negatively, but the new research reveals that body fat is in fact, absolutely critical for health. And how do we know this? Well, we form body fat long before we ever looked at a bikini. Um, actually in, when you're still in your mom's womb, it turns out that when your dad's sperm met your mom's egg and you turn into a ball of cells, the first tissues that form are your blood vessels, your circulation. Every organ needs blood flow. The second tissue that forms are your nerves. These are the electrical circuits that run your organs. And soon after the next tissue that forms is body fat, surprisingly.

And the body fat, by the way, Uh, it doesn't form around the waist first. It first forms around blood vessels, like a roll of bubble wrap that you just wrap around your circulation. Now you go, well, wait a minute. What are the, what's the fat doing around your blood vessels? There aren't fat and blood vessels and bad thing.

Well, you don't want the fat inside your blood vessels. You want it on the outside. This is where it forms the healthy blood vessels, the fuel tanks. Remember we talked about fuel tanks actually need to sit outside of the blood vessels so that when you eat. And if you'll get some absorb from your stomach and your bloodstream, the fuel tanks are sitting right there to receive that energy and store it.

So in fact, healthy body fat works as a fuel tank. We talked about that second healthy body fat, um, uh, is padding. In fact, we didn't have any body fat as at all. If we tripped on the steps and fell down, our organs would probably rupture. That's not a good thing. So we knew what needs some. Protective padding.

The third thing that people don't realize is that body fat in fact is a endocrine organ, meaning it creates a hormones. Now you're saying, wait a minute. Aren't those bad hormones? Nope. Good, healthy body fat is critical for health. What are the hormones they, they, um, secrete fat cells secrete about 15 different hormones, uh, hormones like, um, uh, adiponectin adiponectin made by body fat helps our body's insulin, um, absorb sugar glucose more efficiently into ourselves.

So that's right. You heard me correctly. Fat helps us use our metabolism more efficiently. Now, the other thing is that, there are these other 14 or 15, organs that manage our hunger and our appetite. And so by steering our hunger and our appetite, our body fat kind of acts like a fuel gauge to be able to guide whether we're hungry or whether we're not hungry.

Now, what happens is that when you actually have too much of body fat, the fat becomes inflamed. And when the fat becomes inflamed, it's like. Lighting a match in really dry wood, it fires up and it starts to burn things down. And when body fat becomes excessive, remember excessive body fat shuts down your metabolism, lowers your metabolism.

What happens? Why does it happen? Inflammation is like lighting a fire in your kitchen outside of your stove and now things are burning that inflammation that burning derails the hormones. So you can't remember if you're hungry or you're not hungry. If you're full, you tend to overeat and on top of that, the inflammation leaks into your bloodstream and now you're carrying around a hefty amount of inflammatory, unhealthy body fat, something that was good actually turns into something bad in excess. So, so just like everything else in life, we want to actually keep things normal and in moderation. And then finally, there's one kind of body fat called brown fat. That's a special kind of fat that's not lumpy bumpy.

This brown fat has superpowers to help us burn down that excess body fat as well. Wow.

Corinna Bellizzi: So when it comes to that brown fat, I know we've spoken about this before. It kind of sits more in the core of your body, almost like a girdle around some of your organs and up the back of your neck.

So how do we really work to. activate this brown fat so that can help our metabolism to really hum. And what is the, the role of fasting in this? Or does fasting have a role in this whole cycle? 

Dr. William Li: Right. So let's talk about fasting first. We all fast, even though intermittent fasting is a trend. Uh, it's the most natural thing that we do.

All of us do it every day, whether we, uh, are trying to get onto a program or not. Here's the thing we eat. during the day. And then when we go to sleep at night, we're not eating. We're not eating is called fasting. So we're intermittently on every week. We are both sleeping and not eating. And then we get up in the morning, we eat.

So we're intermittently fasting all the time. What happens when we're actually not eating versus eating? Well, it turns out when we are eating, it's like the car that you pull up to the gas station to fill up your fuel. What do you do? You turn your engine off because you don't want to be burning fuel while you're actually loading up on it.

And the same thing, when we are sitting down to eat food, our body shifts its metabolism away from burning fat to storing fuel into the fat. just like you would win a car. All right. So when you're eating during the day, you're, you're focused, your body's focused on storing, not burning fuel, storing fuel in fat, growing fat.

And then when you actually are not eating at night, you stop eating your body switches gears. And now it's actually like the car that's finished filling up. It is now switched into fat burning mode. So when we sleep, when we're fasting, when we're not eating our metabolism is hardwired to burn down fuel.

In our fat, when you've got extra body fat, inflammatory body fat, one way to address that, one way to start burning it down is to actually just not eat and you'll burn it down. Now, how do we know this works? Well, if you were shipwrecked on a desert island without food, you'd be fasting a long time. And of course, what happens.

you know, uh, shipwrecked people wind up losing a lot of weight. They start with their body fat, but without being shipwrecked, you will start burning down your internal harmful body fat first. And that is why this whole idea of discipline interim in fasting. actually, uh, ups our game in terms of our metabolism and fighting a harmful body fat.

But then you kind of go more into thinking about, are there other ways, are there other foods we can actually eat that can, uh, other things we can do to prompt lighting up that brown fat to burn down, uh, harmful body fat as well. These are the new techniques that are being discovered to be able to help us optimize our own metabolism without having to go to a starvation diet.

I love going to markets, seeing what's seasonal, looking at what delicious ingredients could be used for cooking. And it turns out many of these delicious ingredients, uh, are in fact, fat burning. Now, what do we mean by a fat burning? First, it turns out that many foods that we find in markets Fresh markets and even, even the dried market, uh, have natural chemicals called bioactives and these bioactives, when we chew our food, swallow them, they get into our bloodstream.

One of the things they do is they can trigger. are brown fat, the healthy fat to ignite. And when the brown fat is lit up, it actually burns down harmful body fat. So that's right. Fat, good fat fights, bad fat. So what are some of the foods that can actually do this? Remarkably, tomatoes seem to be able to do this.

Lycopene is the bioactive found in tomatoes. I love tomatoes. Um, they have actually shown that just one tomato a day. Can actually before lunch an hour before lunch can actually help you start losing weight within two weeks. So it's really quite powerful. I love green tea, but it's not just green tea. It turns out black tea and even fermented tea.

There's a specialty called poor tea. It's a it's kind of a digestive. It's a Probiotic tea, in fact, um, from thousands of year old from China, that, um, all these things help our gut health, which light up our brown fat and start to burn down harmful body fat. I love those, uh, as well. Bok choy, mustard greens.

These are some of the foods that I. Uh, cook in Asian cooking. Uh, so again, some of the healthiest cultures in the world, cuisines in the world, Asian culture and Mediterranean cultures, I talk about tomatoes, for example, I, in fact, these are all healthy in fat, uh, burning olive oil, olives and olive oils have something called hydroxy tyrosol that light up your brown fat.

And then, you know, I actually. love seafood. Um, uh, omega threes marine omega threes, which actually come from algae. And if you can't get seafood, you can actually get omega threes from other supplements and other sources. Omega threes light up our brown fat. It's quite remarkable. And again, common in Mediterranean and Asian cooking.

I call my approach to healthy, metabolically healthy eating. I call it Mediterranean style eating. It's not a diet. It's an approach. Again,

Kelly Cappasola: thank you for that. When we come back from break, we're going to talk a little bit more about what you've shared on your four week meal plan and eat to beat your diet.

Again, listeners, you can learn more at or by clicking on the weekly highlight page at Be right back after the break.

Corinna Bellizzi: Welcome back again, we're on with Dr. William Lee to discuss his work with eat to beat disease and eat. To beat your diet. Now, Dr. Lee, in your book, Eat to Beat Your Diet, as well as in a four week course that you've set up along the same lines, you offer a meal plan for food lovers. You offer easy food swaps and the sort of shopping tips that can really get people into their stores, into their kitchens and creating, well, just really more delectable foods that they can embrace and enjoy.

Why was that so important for you to include in this work? And I'd love to. offer you the opportunity to, to talk about what you're doing with this course, to ingrain this learning with your audience.

Dr. William Li: Yeah. It was important to me to show that food can be a joyful thing. It's, uh, you know, food has historically recently been associated with fear, guilt, shame, regret, you know, don't do this, don't do that deprivation.

These are all very negative types of concepts to associate with something that is part of our humanity. You know, we have. I've eaten food as a, as cultures, bringing people and families together or communities together for thousands of years, really since, uh, you know, the dawn of humanity and to find ways to embrace those traditions and embrace delicious, healthy foods to me was one of the most wonderful things you could do.

So what I did in my books is I laid out, um, literally hundreds of foods that are all healthy Uh, they activate your health defenses, give you better circulation. They help your, um, uh, regenerate for stem cells, help improve gut health, uh, improve your DNA, protect you, uh, protect you from cellular aging, lower inflammation, raise your immunity and help you burn harmful body fat and surface and raise your own metabolism.

Okay. So I did the heavy lifting. I wanted to have people take a look in my books of all these. lists. And what I tell people to do, please take a pencil, pen, Sharpie, uh, highlighter, whatever, whatever works for you. And just circle the foods that on these lists that you know, you like. If you like tomatoes, you like mushrooms, you like bok choy, whatever it is, circle them.

And I have not been able to find in more than 5, 000 people I've challenged. Anybody who wouldn't circle a few things that they really, really love. So now if you are actually identifying foods that are good for you, that you love, you are way ahead of the game to start your new relationship with food.

Based on foods that you love, love your food to love your health is my personal mantra. Now, the key is how do you then, um, make that, uh, healthy for you? And this is what I talk about in my eat to beat, um, your diet plan. It's not a diet. It's really an approach, simple way to think about it. You know, over the course of a month, uh, you can take a look at the foods that are not so good for you.

Um, and I have a list of those too. Uh, identify the ones that you eat and swap them out. There's some easy swap outs. You know, I call them swap ins because you want to remove the ones that aren't so good for you. Like a bag of chips or soda. And then swap some things that are good for you. Like a smoothie, a green smoothie.

Or, um, some healthy snacks. Uh, and you can actually start to really Take the foods that you like and begin rebuilding your delicious menu that you look forward to with some of these swaps. Then what you do is you begin giving your body more time to burn fat again while you're not eating. Now, again, intermittent fasting, we talked about this, you know, you remarked on the fact that, you know, people are not eating for 16 hours and can, is it possible to release for most people squeezer eating in eight hours?

I think not, not my life. I can't do it. But it turns out that just 12 hours of fasting and 12 hours of eating is good enough. You actually get it. Progress on your metabolism and learning and burning down harmful body fat just by doing it 12 hours. How do you do 12 hours? I'm gonna tell you how I do it If I eat dinner at 7 and I finish at 8 and I put my dishes away When I put my dishes away, it's a signal to me not to eat anymore.

Okay, that's fine. I'm done done done I don't midnight snack. I don't nosh. I don't grab for something in their fridge before I go to bed Um, let's say I go to bed at 11. All right. Uh, from eight o'clock, put my dishes away to 11 o'clock. That's three hours. All right. If I don't need anything, I've, I just have earned those three hours when my body without eating food is now beginning to burn down our extra body fat.

Now, 11 o'clock to seven o'clock, you're supposed to get eight hours of sleep. All right. I do it when you're sleeping. You're not eating. Don't get up in the middle of the night to eat. Just sleep it through. Get good quality sleep. So that's three hours plus eight hours. All right. It's 11 hours. When I get up in the morning, let's say I get up at seven.

This is a example. I get up at seven. I don't do what my mom told me to do, which is to get up out of bed, go down to the kitchen, eat a breakfast, get on the school bus, get to school. And so you're not late. I'm an adult. I don't need to eat right away. I get up and I take at least an hour before I eat anything.

Okay. Alright, I'll groom myself, get dressed, I'll check my email, I'll go for a walk, I'll read a book, I'll do something. By the time I'm ready to sit down and eat something, I've, I've, I've woken up for an hour. Now, let's do the math. Uh, dishes by, in the sink by 8, plus 3 hours to 11, bedtime, 11 to 7. Uh, that's 3 hours plus, uh, uh, 8 hours, that's 11 hours.

And I just told you I gained an extra hour in the morning. That's 11 plus 1, 12 hours. I have just told you how I spend 50 percent of my life, my day with allowing my metabolism to burn harmful body fat. That's an easy way to actually get intermittent fasting to be practical that most people can actually do.

And what you do is you just start exploring more foods that are actually burning down harmful body fat. And you just start tweaking your lifestyle so you can actually. Leverage and harness your body's own fat burning mechanisms, then light up your brown fat with some tasty food. And you're actually going to be a new person.

You will definitely feel better. 

Corinna Bellizzi: Well, Dr. Li, I just want to step in here and say, I've enjoyed reading both of your books. I personally participated in your four week course and what I found so surprising and delightful, frankly, is how. Easy you make really ingraining these practices. Uh, even over the course of four weeks, did kind of a podcast lowdown where I shared my feedback about what it was like to be a part of your course.

So if the audience listening here wants to know more about that, they can also check out those episodes on nutrition without compromise. I would encourage them to check out your courses. I also understand you offer master classes from time to time that are perfectly free and available for your entire audience.

So I don't know when the next one's coming up, but perhaps you have something else to share there. 

Dr. William Li: Yeah. You know, listen, if you want to learn about what I'm doing, sign up for my free newsletter. I'm all about, um, doing the heavy lifting for, uh, people in the public. Let me do the research and, and filter out.

The really, really good stuff and I try to get the information out to people through my newsletter. Come to my website, You can sign up for that newsletter. There, you can learn about my master classes. I do a, a handful of those every month. Um, and then I also do my courses, uh, every month.

Uh, and my metabolism, of course, is on demand. You can take it anytime. I'm all about changing people's lives in easy to do ways that are fun and that make food enjoyable. Again, love your food to love your health is really what I want people to walk away with. If you pick up my book and look at any of the foods in the list, they are loaded with polyphenols.

You can buy polyphenols and dietary supplements as well. I call supplements top offs. If you can't get enough with your diet, by all means, look for a good quality, high quality supplement from a reliable source that can actually help you top off. But mostly, if you go especially to the produce section or the farmer's market and buy the fresh colorful foods, you're going to be treating yourself and your health defenses and your metabolism to polyphenols that light up your health.

Kelly Cappasola: Wow, thank you so much for giving us a little bit of a deep dive on that because again, I think listeners are really wanting to add in some of these great new, you know, antioxidants and you know, different type of nutrients in their, their daily diet, not only to maybe, you know, get in. Proper nutrients, but even that longevity, you know, the anti aging benefits of food.

And I love that people are looking at food like that now and realizing the hindrance of certain foods that they're incorporating, but I'll tell you, Dr. Li, it has been an absolute pleasure to have you on the program today. You are always welcome to come back on this program. We hope we'll get to talk to you in the new year again.

Karina, thank you for, you know, introducing us to Dr. Lee. I hope you both have a wonderful day and appreciate you both.

Dr. William Li: Thanks, Kelly. Thanks, Corinna.

Kelly Cappasola: Oh, thank you so much, Dr. Li. And again, if you'd like to learn more about Dr. William Li, you can do that at his website, which is

I also encourage you to follow him on Dr. William Li. Instagram and other social media platforms. I find myself Dr. Li, checking out your Instagram page almost every day to get some great tips and to see what's really going on when it comes to food trends and whatnot. Again, we'll put all these great links on the weekly highlight page, uh, but appreciate you tuning in today.

I hope you have a happy and healthy week and we'll catch you next time right here on Forever Young.




NWC 48 | Fats And MetabolismWilliam W. Li, MD, is an internationally renowned physician, scientist and author of the New York Times bestseller “Eat to Beat Disease: The New Science of How Your Body Can Heal Itself.” His groundbreaking research has led to the development of more than 30 new medical treatments that impact care for more than 70 diseases including diabetes, blindness, heart disease and obesity. His TED Talk, “Can We Eat to Starve Cancer?” has garnered more than 11 million views. Dr. Li has appeared on Good Morning America, CNN, CNBC, Rachael Ray and Live with Kelly & Ryan, and he has been featured in USA Today, Time Magazine, The Atlantic and O Magazine. He is President and Medical Director of the Angiogenesis Foundation, and he is leading global initiatives on food as medicine. His newest book, “Eat to Beat Your Diet: Burn Fat, Heal Your Metabolism, and Live Longer” is available wherever books are sold.

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