A Profound Transition: Testimony of Prof. Spira
On the top are my old Resident Adviser ID badges which were taken 1 year apart. I think that the bottom left was taken during a Boy Scout trip at Niagara Falls two years before starting the diet, and the bottom right is a photo that was posted on the “Meet your R.A.s” bulletin board in Siddall Hall.
I was addicted to pus- and mucus-forming foods. A lot of them. Well, I’m still an addict, but back then, a normal meal could consist of two chili-cheese footlong coneys, five root beers, popcorn, and a cheeseburger at our neighborhood Root Beer Stand. Unfortunately, I was in a social setting and cultural landscape that gave me status for my big stature and indulgent lifestyle. I played American football and was a 250-pound varsity offensive lineman for the Princeton Vikings. I loved the feeling of running onto the field while the crowd exploded with sounds of drunken joy, then legally running people over during the game. My other love was music. I had played the trombone since fifth grade and was fascinated with jazz. When it was time for college, I decided that I wanted to pursue my spiritual love of music and went to the University of Cincinnati College-Conservatory of Music to study jazz.
When I began school, I thought I was on the right track. I was an “A” student in one of the top music schools in the country, experiencing the legal and illegal fun of American college life, while eating and drinking as much as I could take in. But this excessive lifestyle came with a cost, and I suffered from many ailments. I had chronic migraine headaches, joint pain, bad allergies, frequent nose bleeds, painful hemorrhoids, and yearly bouts of bronchitis.
“Bam Bam” with Turkey Leg
As a child, I had tubes put in my ears to help drain large amounts of mucus from my sinuses and was injected with countless drugs. Around age 7, I began taking daily allergy medications. I first took Seldane, but after several years it was driven off the market for killing people. I then was put on Allegra, followed by Allegra D, then Zyrtec, Claritin (did nothing for me—like taking a sugar pill), and finally back to Allegra D. Along the way, I frequently took antibiotics, migraine medicine, and many over-the-counter drugs. In junior high and high school, I had doctor’s orders that allowed the school nurse to supply me with Advil. I had splitting headaches almost every day and often left class to take an Advil and lie down in the nurse’s office. In addition, my nose was often red, sore, and scabbed from blowing it hundreds of times a day . . . almost every day.
By the time I went off to college, I weighed over 280 pounds. I planned to move into the dorms, but I was self-conscious about my loud snoring. My Boy Scoutmaster had used a CPAP unit and he said it cured his snoring. I went to the doctor for a sleep study and was hooked up to dozens of wires, given a lot of junk-food snacks to eat, and told to fall asleep. Needless to say, I did not get much rest. The doctor promptly diagnosed me with sleep apnea and ordered me to purchase a CPAP unit. Thus, I was 19 years old and already hooked up to a respirator at night.
280 pounds, drunk in college dorm c.2002
I felt as if I had no control over my health and I would joke with friends that I would probably have my first stroke by age 26. Up to this point, I had been exposed to many of the popular dietary fads and had investigated a few of them without being impressed or successful. I worked out constantly, took diet pills, ginger root supplements, and more in futile attempts at losing weight. I watched every late-night infomercial on diet and exercise, fantasizing about the possibility of actually gaining control over my weight. Yet, I was not really interested in true health but only in looking fit and being buff. Unfortunately, none of the diets being pushed in the mainstream made any sense to me. So I decided to just over-indulge in food with the philosophy that I would just “die whenever it was time for me to go.” But, when I left high school, I stopped working out like a varsity athlete. Instead, I practiced my trombone for 8 to 12 hours a day. I ate huge meals and then practiced for hours, taking breaks only to smoke and eat candy bars or Doritos.
250 Pounds, c. 2000 in Toronto, Canada
During my freshman year, I made it a point to plug into the local jazz scene to supplement my school activities. I knew that I would really learn how to play music while on the professional jazz bandstand, and I sought out as many opportunities as I could. On Sunday nights, I would go to Sonny’s jazz jam session and sit in with my trombone. Sonny’s was one of those bars where the older black folks congregated to drink and socialize. The older men would show off their brand new 1967 leisure suits, while the older women would get wasted and try to offer me drinks saying, “You so fine, baby!” And of course, the old sugar daddies would show up courting their young sugar babies. One Sunday I met an interesting jazz drummer named Brother Air. After seeing him around Cincinnati at other local jazz spots, I began to talk with him about health and diet. Air dismissed the principles of Western dietetic theory and asserted that the only true road to health was through Prof. Arnold Ehret’s Mucusless Diet Healing System. Brother Air said that he was over 40 years old and had practiced the diet for more than 20 years. This was shocking, as he did not look anywhere near 40 years old.
One evening, my saxophonist friend Daktehu and Brother Air were sitting in on Erwin Stuckey’s set at Chez Nora in Northern Kentucky. At the intermission, Daktehu and I hit the free buffet and filled our plates with chicken wings and other delectable items. As we sat and ate, Air began to speak very clearly about the Mucusless Diet Healing System. As the conversation progressed, Daktehu and I ate slower and eventually quit. As I looked at my plate with new eyes, Brother Air talked about his experience eating nothing but fruit for an entire year, and sustaining 100-day juice fasts. This caused something to click in my brain. Humans as fruit eaters! It made so much sense. If any being on the planet could subsist on nothing but fruit, why is it not possible for humans? By the end of the conversation, we had both decided to buy the Mucusless Diet Healing System and check it out.
After reading Arnold Ehret’s Mucusless Diet Healing System and Rational Fasting for Physical, Mental and Spiritual Rejuvenation, my entire concept of life was transformed. The information seemed so simple, yet it challenged every assumption that I had about sickness and how the human body functions. For days, I sat and let questions flow through my mind: “Could this information really lead to the fountain of youth?” “Is the fundamental cause for aging and death mucus and pus?” “Is disease and sickness a self-induced thing?” “Did Brother Air really survive on nothing but fruit for an entire year?” “Are the lungs really the pump and the heart, the valve?” “If man is supposed to eat fruit, why did we start eating dead animals and cooked/fermented foods?” “Is eating protein-rich food really unnecessary and harmful?” “And what is so important about the fifth chapter of the Mucusless Diet?” “What is meant by the body being an “air-gas engine,” and why was I instructed to read and reread this chapter about five times?” “What is meant by ‘Vitality = Power – Obstruction’?”
One cool autumn day, I sat alone in a Memorial Hall practice room holding my silver trombone. I was dressed in a pair of brown suede, oxford pants and a yellow short-sleeved, 100 percent silk, button-up shirt—all from Bachrach Men’s Clothier where I had been a sales representative. I sighed. On the wall stood a big mirror with a pattern of cracks in the bottom right hand corner, possibly left by the angry hand of some hopeless music student before their board examination. I gazed at 280 pounds of swollen anguish wrapped in fine fabrics. At that moment, my life blazed before my eyes. I thought about the instances when I had been ridiculed for being fat. I remembered the indescribable pain of seeing my grandmother and mother pass away due to chronic illnesses. I tried to imagine how many thousands of tissues had rubbed my sore, scabbed nose over the years. I remembered how unfulfilled I felt when I smoked or drank. I thought about the overall suffering of humanity. Is eating solely to blame for the ills of humankind? This was followed by a vision of the future. A future when all people would be empowered to seek superior health through a lifestyle that is in tune with Nature’s laws. An era when concepts of pain, suffering, and death are remembered only through ancient tales and legends. It was at that moment that I became filled with the unrelenting determination to do all in my power to transform myself through this profound information that I had the privilege to receive. I realized my opportunity was a rare and precious gift that very few people were given. I had information that held the potential to transform the entire Universe! I then wiped a tear from my right eye and vowed to dedicate my life to pursuing superior health through the practice of the Mucusless Diet Healing System.
To be continued. . . .
Peace, Love, and Breath!