True Health Initiative Letter to Governor Cuomo in Support of S. 1471 (Hoylman) / A. 4072 (Gottfried)
October 1, 2019
The Honorable Andrew M. Cuomo
Governor of New York
State Capitol Building
Albany, NY 12224
RE: S. 1471 (Hoylman) / A. 4072 (Gottfried)
True Health Initiative unites health professionals from paleo to vegan, and from pediatrics to geriatrics. We are a coalition of the leading professionals at the frontiers of new research working with communities to create a culture that promotes health and enables longevity.
What we eat matters. The World Health Organization reports that 80% of chronic disease is preventable by lifestyle intervention. Whole food, plant-based diets have been shown to prevent and reverse some of the leading causes of disease, such as heart disease. As an example, the Ornish Program for Reversing Heart Disease, by THI council member, Dean Ornish MD, is the first integrative treatment for heart disease to be covered by Medicare. The program is covered, because a plant-based diet has been consistently shown to improve heart health. According to Diabetes in New York City: Public Health Burden and Disparities, approximately 90% of New Yorkers do not eat the recommended amount of fruits and vegetables. Cardiovascular Disease is the leading cause of death in NYS, claiming 44,092 death in 2017, as reported by the CDC. After evaluating the current research on plant-based diet and health, the mayo clinic states that, “eating more plant-based foods can help you lose weight, lower cholesterol and reduce your risk of heart disease.” As of 2018, there were over 1.5 million New Yorkers living with diabetes. As insulin prices rise, NYS needs a better solution; plant based meals are resoundingly more cost-effective than insulin.
Mandating a plant-based option, is not only the right thing to do for New Yorkers’ health, it is the right thing to do for the state budget, and the future of a population facing the burden of largely preventable chronic disease
By signing S. 1471A/A. 4072 into law, you would ensure that patients at all New York hospitals have access to healthy plant-based meals to help fight these epidemics.
We strongly support S. 1471A/A. 4072 and urge you to sign this bill as soon as possible.