A diet of processed foods, swigging alcohol and smoking is leaving most Kiwis pre-ill by the time they are in their 40s, a health guru and best-selling author says.
Jason Shon Bennett said people were eating themselves sick causing rising rates of cancer, heart disease and diabetes.
Even the elderly were falling victim to quick-fix, processed foods, far removed from past generations of clean eating.
Bennett, who is behind the secret to exceptional health seminar, is in Blenheim on Monday.
Born two months premature, he suffered from asthma, allergies, skin problems and digestion issues.
"I got to 20 and was told by doctors it was incurable. Take the drugs. Bad luck son.
"We were about to conceive our first son and I came to the realisation I am going to suck as a father if I can't go a day without prescribed drugs."
Bennett cured himself after he revamped his diet and lifestyle and moved to a plant-based, whole foods regime.
His success drew the admiration of physicians and a legion of fans which sparked his best-selling book Eat Less, Live Long.
Bennett's philosophy is you are what you eat and his clients include a women who dropped 30kg, a man who cured his skin problems after 30 years, and a patient who got off medication for depression.
"If you eat yourself sick you can't drug yourself well. If you eat yourself sick, you have to eat yourself well," he said.
"I am very much like a sledgehammer to most people and give them the wake-up call they need.
"I say to people in their 20s, ‘come see me in 15 years when your body is falling apart'. A diet of boozing, stress and fatty foods will catch up with them."
In this seminar Bennett will explain how to get super healthy, lose weight and prevent disease.
"It is not rocket science; it is a very simple change to a person's diet, lifestyle and environment. My message is not sexy. Most people want a pill but there is no quick fix."
The seminar's target market are 35- to 65-year-olds who regularly feel exhausted and rundown, and are overeating.
His research on centenarians found those across the world who lived past 100 had in common a plant-based diet, with low level to no consumption of meat and alcohol.
"In New Zealand societal changes and elderly falling victim to the food production line in supermarkets has seen a move to processed foods from a time when they ate simpler food. It is never too late to eat well."
Jason's seminar will be held at the Scenic Hotel Marlborough at 6.30pm on Monday.
Tickets are $25 and can be purchased from jasonshonbennett.com.
- The Marlborough Express
How many books do you read a year?Related story: (See story)