Blog - The Eating Academy | Peter Attia, M.D.

Would you like to help me help others?

Would you like to help me help others?
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Over the past 7 months, since I launched this blog, many of you have commented that you can’t believe I put all this time and effort into the blog without any attempt to monetize it.  In fact, I turn down about 3 or 4 offers per month to allow advertising on the blog because of our traffic and analytics. (The average time spent on the blog per visit is over 6 minutes, which I’m told is great for advertising.)  I’ve also declined many offers for donations to offset my personal costs, though I’m greatly moved by such gestures.

This week I received another (pleasant) reminder of the blog’s growing popularity and your support when the blog outgrew the services of HostGator and over-taxed their server, forcing me to migrate the blog to my own dedicated server, at a great increase in cost.

Well, I’d like to now ask those of you who have found this resource helpful to pay it forward.

About 3 years ago I met Roderick Sewell, through one of my swim coaches, Allan Voisard.

In addition to coaching U.S. Masters swimmers like me, Alan coaches many swimmers like Roderick through a program called the Challenged Athletes Foundation (CAF) — an organization I’ve come to admire so much over the past few years.

To get an understanding of why I’m so passionate about CAF, please take a moment to watch this video about Roderick’s life and how CAF has changed it forever.

For those reading this over email, you can link to the video here.

Perhaps it’s because I know Alan and Roderick personally, but I find this short video to be profoundly moving and inspiring, simultaneously. It’s such an honor to work out in the same pool as Roderick and other challenged athletes.

Alan and his wife, Allison, are two of the biggest supporters of CAF and they have literally changed the lives of countless athletes like Roderick.   While Allison and Allan spend a great deal of their own time and money to help athletes like Roderick, many of the really expensive items, such as prosthetic limbs, are provided for free to the athletes through CAF.  To give you an idea of how much these amazing devices cost, each of Roderick’s legs costs about $30,000, so it’s about $60,000 to outfit a bilateral amputee with a set of running legs.

The biggest annual fundraising event for CAF is something called the Million Dollar Challenge.   This event is a bike ride from San Francisco to San Diego covering 620 miles over 7 days.  This year I’ve decided to participate in this amazing event.  I know several people who have previously done it, and without exception all have commented that it’s one of the most inspiring weeks of their life. We pay to do this because of how rewarding it is.

For those reading this over email, you can link to the video here.

I know many of you have offered to pay to cover the costs of maintaining the blog (a cost that I’m honored to tell you seems to be doubling every month!), but I’d much rather continue to cover those costs myself and have you help me reach my goal of raising enough money to buy another set of prosthetic limbs for the next Roderick out there.

If you feel moved to help me achieve this goal, please go through this link to my personal page where you can make a donation of any amount.  All donations (for U.S. donors) are tax deductible.

Thank you so much, in advance, for helping me achieve a goal I’ve had for some time now.  There is no greater way to pay me back than to help Roderick and his peers – folks who are truly my heroes.

 

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About the Author:

Peter Attia, M.D., is the co-founder and President of the Nutrition Science Initiative (NuSI), a non-profit based in San Diego, CA. He received his B.Sc. from Queen's University in Canada and his M.D. from Stanford Medical School in California. After his surgical residency in general surgery at Johns Hopkins he worked as a consultant at McKinsey & Company. He founded NuSI with scientific journalist Gary Taubes in 2012.

Discussion

  1. Brian  July 24, 2012

    Dr. Attia, As a full time student, I don’t have much to give but I will donate what I can tomorrow!

    I have a question about NuSI. Are there opportunities for non-health professionals to get involved? In a matter of years I will (fingers crossed) have the letters “DPT, CSCS” following my name…but I’d hate to waste those years not doing anything I could to help. Especially since nutrition/obesity is so important to me as a former obese American (it’s been 6 years since I was 260 lbs at 5’6”, to 157lbs, now a strong athletic 170lbs and most recently living in Nutritional Ketosis).

    Thanks!

    Brian

    (reply)
    • Peter Attia  July 24, 2012

      Brian, thank you so much. EVERY dollar helps. I am so confident that if each person who feels this site has helped them makes even a minor contribution, we can reach this goal. Once we get NuSI launched in September, we plan to create a volunteer community program with very specific and tangible projects that folks can match to their passions and skills. I’m very excited about this way to involved passionate “citizens” in this cause and believe this will be the beginning of an enormous movement that will ensure our children grown up with the ability to more informed food choices than the ones we struggled with.

  2. mem  July 24, 2012

    Thank you for educating me about Roderick and this organization. If people are not moved to donate whatever they can to this cause, which is about the support and growth of whole people, then I don’t know what would motivate them. And again, thank you for all of your good work on this site. It is an oasis for many of us. As a nearly 14 year whole foods low carber who maintains a 110lb weight loss since ’02, I celebrate the in depth education you are offering people in this area. . Like you, I did not eat junk. I ate what was considered a good diet and was active, though surely not nearly as active as you, but far more active than a typical sedentary person. Changing my diet changed my life forever. I have found what works for me movement wise and I remain committed to ketogenic low carbing because it keeps former multiple medical disorders in remission or essentially cured, as well as a 110lb weight loss for an optimum weight. What I know is there are more women (and men!) like me. They need to be reached with a clear , objective message and information. You are doing this. Thank you.

    (reply)
    • Peter Attia  July 24, 2012

      Thanks so much for your story and your support. Really appreciate it.

  3. Peter Defty  July 24, 2012

    Shoot me an e-mail. I would like to help you with your ride and also see how I can help with the challenged athlete program. Like you I am doing everything possible to move things forward in getting people’s metabolism back to burning fat as the aerobic fuel of choice.

    (reply)
  4. Travis Koger  July 24, 2012

    Peter,

    Attempted to donate, but I am not convinced of the security of the web page that is being used. Any other methods I can use, Google Wallet, PayPal or similar?

    Also, re the blog, I assume your team has looked into getting the blog on something like Blogger rather than self hosted?

    (reply)
    • Peter Attia  July 24, 2012

      There is a manual download page you can print out and send a check. Very old school, I know. Thanks very much.

    • Travis Koger  July 25, 2012

      Not sure how the manual version would work coming from the UK and supplying a cheque, so just did it on the CC.

    • Peter Attia  July 25, 2012

      Thanks so much for your support, Travis.

  5. David  July 24, 2012

    I would love to contribute, but I’d much prefer to use PayPal. Any chance of a PayPal link?

    (reply)
    • Peter Attia  July 24, 2012

      Thank you, David. If you prefer not to use CC, there is a link to a paper form and and check option. Unfortunately, there is no PayPal link, but I’m told (and I’ve used it) the CC link is hyper-secure.

  6. Pete Spitellie  July 24, 2012

    Hi Peter, fellow fit but fat Physician who’s just started my carb restricted journey. Reading your beatifuly written blog, and several of the books you list on your site(I’m trying not to read them all at the same time–> bad habit) I’m becoming a beliver. Where was this during med school??!! I always knew our nutrition curriculum was lacking, but WOW!!! Off the top of my head I can’t think of worse public health disaster. I’ve sent you a personal message as well because I’d love to contribut to NuSI in any way.
    The videos on today’s post are unbelievable. I’ve shared them around the office today, and I’ll be contributing to your ride.
    Thank you Peter,

    Pete

    (reply)
    • Peter Attia  July 24, 2012

      Thanks, Pete (fellow fit-but-fat, soon to be former-fellow-fit-but-fat). Yes, I’d have to concur — there is no greater public health fiasco/disaster than this one. Once we get NuSI launched, our plan is to create an on-line volunteer community with very specific “asks” that folks can match to skills, interest, time commitment, etc.

    • Travis Koger  July 24, 2012

      Sign me up for some of that action Peter. Happy to help with NuSI to give back the benefits I have received from Gary and yourself.

  7. Avner Taieb  July 24, 2012

    Done. The least I can do. Thank you again Peter for this great blog.

    (reply)
    • Peter Attia  July 24, 2012

      Thank you so much, Avner.

  8. Maryann  July 24, 2012

    Hi Peter, you are right; Roderick is an incredible inspiration. He is such a special person; do you know what he has planned now that he has graduated? He has such spirit and gratitude it is amazing; and I am sure that more great things await him and his mom.

    I know that you will really enjoy that event, it is great that you are doing it. My husband and I will be very glad to help, and I will be looking forward to the opportunities that will be available in the future to be a volunteer member of the NuSI team. Thanks to you and Gary for finding a way to let those of us who are interested help you. God bless you for all you have done for us, and all you do for others.

    (reply)
    • Peter Attia  July 24, 2012

      Thank you, Maryann. Roderick just completed his second year in college. Two more to go. Thanks so much for your support.

  9. Evinx  July 24, 2012

    A check is on the way. Thanks for all that you do.

    (reply)
    • Peter Attia  July 24, 2012

      Thank you for supporting CAF, through me.

  10. Tom A  July 24, 2012

    The site is secure with https for all those concerned. No worries and happy to be able to contribute. Have a fantastic ride. I’m jealous and not sure my butt could take that mileage right now. Maybe next year!

    (reply)
    • Peter Attia  July 24, 2012

      Thanks so much, Tom, for pointing this out. For those reading this, it’s helpful to know that Tom is the CIO of a very large company and knows this space/issue as well as anyone out there. Hopefully this lets folks feel comfortable with using the on-line donation form.

    • Travis Koger  July 25, 2012

      Tom,

      My concern was not that it didn’t use SSL, but that there are parts of the page that are not using it and therefore is not completely secure. This can introduce elements that allow the transfer of non-encrypted data and without looking at the code of the page, technically the site could be transferring the CC information to an unsecured address that allows hackers to sniff the information. I decided to make my donation, not because I think the site is particularly trustworthy, truth is I am only going by Peter’s word for trust, but also because I am using a CC that I know is insured. To say that the page is using HTTPS does not necessarily mean that it is secured, especially when the browser will flag the page for having unsecured elements. It is obviously better than not using SSL, but still needs caution. Ordinarily I would not be entering my CC into this page.

      The problem with saying this is using HTTPS and is therefore secure is that can lead people who are not as understanding of the technology to assume that even though their browser might be warning them that the page is not fully secured, it sort of is and therefore can be trusted. Which can have some bad effects if people start to ignore these types of warnings.

      Sorry if I am being a little picky on this, but it is not a concern that should be washed over.

    • Peter Attia  July 26, 2012

      I do wish they used PayPal for this…

  11. Brigita  July 24, 2012

    So awesome! This is what life is about! Thank you for sharing, i’m off to pay it forward-

    (reply)
  12. Jillian Mckee  July 24, 2012

    Hi,

    I have a quick question about your blog, do you think you could e-mail me?

    Jillian

    (reply)
    • Peter Attia  July 25, 2012

      Sure, send me the request through the Contact portion of the blog.

  13. Randa Osman  July 24, 2012

    What an amazing cause and an inspiring story! Thanks for bringing this to our attention and giving us the opportunity to contribute to this great cause. Good luck in your ride!

    (reply)
    • Peter Attia  July 25, 2012

      Thanks so much, Randa. Greatly appreciated.

  14. Michael Andreula  July 24, 2012

    No problem. What ever keeps you researching and creating crystal clear content.

    (reply)
  15. David Nelsen  July 25, 2012

    Done and dusted as the Irish say. Good luck on the ride.
    Dave

    (reply)
    • Peter Attia  July 25, 2012

      Thank you so much, David.

  16. lorraine  July 25, 2012

    You da man. Happy to help.

    (reply)
    • Peter Attia  July 25, 2012

      Thanks, Lorraine. Remind me to write a post about my “You dah man” Teef. That’s right. No typos there.

  17. John Dawson  July 25, 2012

    Done. Glad to help. And thank you, Dr. Attia, for this great blog.

    (reply)
  18. Dorian  July 25, 2012

    Online donation complete. Have a super fantastic ride!

    As with others, looking forward to hearing about roles at NuSI.

    (reply)
    • Peter Attia  July 25, 2012

      Thank you so much, Dorian.

  19. Enos Pritchett  July 26, 2012

    Hello Dr. Attia, I don’t see the donate area. Please send me the link, I would like to donate.

    (reply)
  20. Cassiel  July 27, 2012

    I don’t have much to spare, but for such a worthy cause, I’m happy to do my bit!! I’ve just donated. Good luck with it all, I hope you get a fantastic response and raise lots of money, and that you enjoy taking part. (I’m sure you will!)

    (reply)
    • Peter Attia  July 28, 2012

      Thank you so much, Cassiel. Believe it or not, it doesn’t take much from everyone. In fact, if every single weekly reader of the blog donated just $5, we’d get to over $60,000 in one week! Every dollar helps. Thanks for your gift.

  21. Johna Till Johnson  July 27, 2012

    Done! And here’s to breaking down barriers everywhere… particularly the barriers of belief that keep people from achieving their full potentials!

    (reply)
    • Peter Attia  July 27, 2012

      Thank you so much. Really appreciate it.

  22. Brad F  July 27, 2012

    Peter
    I have posted on occasion, but follow your blog closely and great interest.

    I passed this video on to a friend in the arts (also a physician). He in turn passed it on to a well known performer. She was blown away. Wait to you see what happens.

    You can email offline and I would be more than happy to share.

    Incidentally, I was equally blown away by this clip. It brought tears to my eyes.

    Brad

    (reply)
    • Peter Attia  July 28, 2012

      Brad, thank you so much for sharing it. I have the same reaction. Please feel free to contact me privately through the contact me tool in the blog.

  23. Julia  July 29, 2012

    Is there a way to make a donation through Paypal?
    Thank you for your website.

    (reply)
    • Peter Attia  July 29, 2012

      Thanks so much for your interest, Julia. Unfortunately they don’t have a PayPal hookup, but I’m told by people far smarter than me that the credit card application is very secure.

  24. Craig  July 31, 2012

    I just donated. Keep up the great work. One suggestion: make it even easier to donate by putting the donate link on the front page of EatingAcademy.com. I read the whole post when it first came out but just now came back to donate and I bet there are other folks like me who already know they want to donate. The easier it is to find the link, the more likely people are to donate.

    (reply)
    • Peter Attia  July 31, 2012

      Thanks very much, Craig. Good suggestion.

  25. Diana Attuso  August 7, 2012

    Dr Attia,
    Yours is one of the few voices out here whom I trust. I am so grateful you are willing to share your time and knowledge. I will definitely contribute to your cause.
    Thanks, Diana

    (reply)
    • Peter Attia  August 8, 2012

      Thank you, Diana. I’m honored.

  26. Maryann  August 8, 2012

    Hi Peter, congratulations on hitting the $10,000 milestone! :) Very cool!

    (reply)
    • Peter Attia  August 8, 2012

      Thank you so much! Do you think we can get to $60,000 by October?

  27. Maryann  August 9, 2012

    I hope so! You always set such high goals for yourself. Are checks reflected in the total (even if not, I don’t imagine you are getting many)?

    I was wondering if you could keep this post in the second position on your site until after the race, rather than in chronological order. That way, it won’t scroll down the page out of sight…you are always reaching new readers and this would increase visibility of this very moving and powerful story. I imagine you have reached most of your regulars by now, and you don’t want new readers to miss this. I was also wondering if Gary would consider linking to it on his site. Just trying to help…

    How is training going? All the best!
    Maryann

    (reply)
    • Peter Attia  August 10, 2012

      That’s a great idea, Maryann. I wonder if I can “trick” WordPress into keeping it in the #2 spot until October.

  28. obróbka skrawaniem  September 29, 2012

    You can definitely see your enthusiasm within the article you write.

    The sector hopes for more passionate writers like you who are not afraid
    to mention how they believe. Always follow your heart.

    (reply)
  29. Maryann  October 16, 2012

    Hi Peter! How is your ride going? I can’t believe you are still keeping up with the blog right now. Congratulations on your great fundraising, and I hope you are having an amazing week!

    (reply)
    • Peter Attia  October 16, 2012

      Maryann, thanks so much for asking. Unfortunately, my brutal travel schedule caught up with me in the weeks leading up the ride and I suffered a pretty bad injury during the ride and had to stop short of completing it. Needless to say, it broke my heart to stop for something as insignificant as a knee injury (especially because I know exactly why it happened — nonstop travel for 2 months and not enough time for tissue therapy), but there is one upside to the injury: more money that goes to CAF. So I think everyone wins but me and I’ll have to plan better for next year.

    • Maryann  October 16, 2012

      Oh no! I’m so sorry, how shocking and disappointing for you. You put everyone else first. Please take good care of yourself. You did a great job, and next year will be really something… fully joyful like you deserve it to be!

    • Peter Attia  October 17, 2012

      Thanks for your understanding. Needless to say, I’ve been crushed by this and have no one to blame but myself. I guess it’s good to be reminded sometimes that I’m not superman.

    • Bob West  December 3, 2012

      Hi Peter,

      I just came across your comment, once again, about your injury on your CAF ride. I realized that I was concerned when I read it the first time, but had not made a comment about it. So:

      (1) I do hope that you are recovering, or have recovered, from the injury itself;

      (2) I also hope that you know how you contributed to their cause by participating and publicizing it; quite a few of your readers contributed (as I did, modestly), and their (our) awareness of the organization and its work was raised, and will continue beyond this year;

      (3) there is a vague background cultural prejudice against the “disabled,” as if we are talking about people who are in any sense less fully human or normal than anyone else, when in fact the efforts of the “disabled” are often incredibly admirable, and way stronger than most of us are called on to do. You have helped to change these faulty impressions out there.

      Anyway, I just wanted to give some acknowledgment, and hope for your recovery, and recognition of what you are doing with this blog. Keep it up…. lots of people recognize it.

      Bob.

    • Peter Attia  December 4, 2012

      Bob, very kind of you to follow up. I’m getting my knee back in shape, but next summer will be the test again. As silly as it sounds I’m convinced the entire problem stems for hours and hours on airplanes and actually has nothing to do with riding my bike. That’s just the manifestation of the problem!

  30. Elissa Kerpen  December 2, 2012

    HI Peter, I think what your doing is truly inspiring and generous. I myself am a health care professional (Naturopathic Nutritionist and Fitness Therapist) I have been working on this same topic for the past few years and recently just removed myself from a very ‘well paying’ job as a new product formulator for a natural supplement company in Australia, to dedicate my time to help share this message. Im not sure how I might be able to assist the work that you do, but if you could use my support or experience then please don’t hesitate to contact me at either kerpen.mail@gmail.com or my blog http://thewholefoodtruth.wordpress.com/. I look forward to following the more of the work that you are doing

    thanks for your time

    regards

    Elissa Kerpen

    (reply)
  31. Maryann  June 26, 2013

    Hi Peter,
    How is your progress, are you feeling 100% and are you planning to ride this year? I think people would love to know that CAF immediately offered their expertise and support to the victims of the Bostom marathon bombing. Just another great reason to support them. I hope you are feeling well, I know that your schedule was a reason you were derailed last year.
    maryann

    (reply)
    • Peter Attia  June 26, 2013

      Thanks so much for remembering, Maryann. I am feeling 100% this year. Lots of work in the offseason to get ready!

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