By David H Murdock – Chairman-Owner Of Dole Foods

Is it possible to live to 125 or maybe 150? It’s certainly a possibility, as discussed on Oprah Winfrey’s recent show on longevity. She visited me at my farm to learn how, at 86, I am enjoying the robust health, energy, and mental creativity of someone many decades younger. My secret: large quantities of fruit and vegetables, plus an hour of daily exercise.

No pills, not even aspirin, and certainly no supplements ever enter my mouth — everything I need comes from my fish-vegetarian diet, which incorporates 30-40 different kinds of fruit and vegetables every week. Even though I am Chairman and Owner of Dole Food Company, I do most of my own grocery shopping, and even took Oprah on an impromptu trip to Costco, in a day that included bike riding, exercise in the gym, and juicing vegetables in the kitchen. Oprah marveled at how much I eat, and yet never gain a pound. In fact, I expend a lot of energy in my 50-60 minutes of cardio and strength training every day. Plus there’s the fact that fruit and vegetables tend to be lower in calories, but higher in filling fiber and other nutrients that help you feel satisfied.

By eating many fruits and vegetables in place of fast food and junk food, people could avoid obesity. Obesity accelerates aging even faster than smoking, according to scientific research.

We created the North Carolina Research Campus to study the health benefits of fruits and vegetables. It is the only campus in the world encompassing eight universities all working together for the benefit of health and longevity. These include Duke University, UNC Chapel Hill, NC State University, UNC Charlotte, North Carolina Central University, NC A&T State University, UNC Greensboro and Appalachian State University. We’ve gathered a comprehensive array of famous scientists and scientific equipment under one roof, including a two-story, 950 megahertz, 8-ton superconducting magnet. It is the largest and most powerful magnet in the world and will help us look at both plant and human cells at the most minute level. We are constantly doing research on all fruit and vegetables, including the ones listed below, which are the mainstay of my diet.

The Healthiest Foods on Earth

Pineapple Speeds post-surgery Promotes joint health Reduces asthma inflammation
Blueberries Restore antioxidant levels Reverse age-related brain decline Prevent urinary tract infection
Spinach Helps maintain mental sharpness Reduces the risk of cancers of the liver, ovaries, colon and prostate Top nutrient density
Red Bell Pepper Reduces risk of lung, prostate, ovarian and cervical cancer Protects against sunburn Promotes heart health
Broccoli Reduces diabetic damage Lowers risk of prostate, bladder, colon, pancreatic, gastric and breast cancer Protects the brain in event of injury
Tomato Reduces inflammation Lowers risk of developing esophageal, stomach, colorectal, lung and pancreatic cancer Reduces cardiovascular disease risk
Apple Supports immunity Fights lung and prostate cancer Lowers Alzheimer’s risk
Artichoke Helps blood clotting Antioxidant Superfood Lowers “bad” cholesterol
Arugula Lowers birth defect risk Reduces fracture risk Protects eye health
Asparagus Nourishes good gut bacteria Protects against birth defects Promotes heart health
Avocado Limits liver damage Reduces oral cancer risk Lowers cholesterol levels
Blackberries Build bone density Suppress appetite Enhance fat burning
Butternut Squash Supports night vision Combats wrinkles Promotes heart health
Cantaloupe Bolsters immunity Protects skin against sunburn Reduces inflammation
Carrot Antioxidants defend DNA Fights cataracts Protects against some cancers
Cauliflower Stimulates detoxification Suppresses breast cancer cell growth Defends against prostate cancer
Cherries Alleviate arthritic pain and gout Lower “bad” cholesterol Reduce inflammation
Cranberries Alleviate prostate pain Fight lung, colon and leukemia cancer cells Prevent urinary tract infection
Green Cabbage Promotes healthy blood clotting Reduces risk of prostate, colon, breast and ovarian cancers Activates the body’s natural detoxification systems
Kale Counters harmful estrogens that can feed cancer Protects eyes against sun damage and cataracts Increases bone density
Kiwi Combats wrinkles Lowers blood clot risk and reduces blood lipids Counters constipation
Mango Supports immunity Lowers “bad” cholesterol Regulates homocysteine to protect arteries
Mushrooms Promote natural detoxification Reduce the risk of colon and prostate cancer Lower blood pressure
Orange Reduces levels of “bad” cholesterol Lowers risk of cancers of the mouth, throat, breast and stomach, and childhood leukemia Pectin suppresses appetite
Papaya Enzymes aid digestion Reduces risk of lung cancer Enhances fat burning
Plums & Prunes Counter constipation Antioxidants defend against DNA damage Protects against post-menopausal bone loss
Pomegranate Enhances sunscreen protection Lowers “bad” cholesterol Fights prostate cancer
Pumpkin Protects joints against polyarthritis Lowers lung and prostate cancer risk Reduces inflammation
Raspberries Inhibit growth of oral, breast, colon and prostate cancers Antioxidant DNA defense Lower “bad” cholesterol levels
Strawberries Protect against Alzheimer’s Reduce “bad” cholesterol Suppress growth of colon, prostate and oral cancer
Sweet Potato Reduces stroke risk Lowers cancer risk Protect against blindness
Watermelon Supports male fertility Reduces risk of several cancers: prostate, ovarian, cervical, oral and pharyngeal Protects skin against sunburn
Banana Increases Fat Burning Lowers risk of colorectal and kidney cancer, leukemia Reduces asthmas symptoms in children

One of my missions in life is to share this kind of knowledge with others, so they can live more vital, active, satisfying lives. Since acquiring major interests in Dole 26 years ago, educating the public on proper diet has constituted the agenda of my Dole Nutrition Institute. We publish the Dole Nutrition News — enjoyed by 2.5 million subscribers (sign up at www.dolenutrition.com). We create cooking and nutrition videos, cookbooks, brochures, and other educational collateral, like the chart above. We also provide educational support to teachers, parents and kids through www.dolesuperkids.com.

While Arianna and I do not agree on all issues, we both believe in the importance of proper nutrition. I’ve known Arianna since she arrived in this country, many decades ago, and am godfather to one of her daughters. I’ve enjoyed many Mediterranean-style healthy meals at her home, and am helping her increase access to nutrition information, which is why I wanted to share some “food for thought” with her intellectually ravenous.

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David H. Murdock is Chairman and owner of Dole Food Company, Inc., the world’s largest producer and marketer of fresh fruit, fresh vegetables, packaged and frozen foods. He is also Chairman, CEO and owner of Castle & Cooke, Inc., a leader in real estate development.
Mr. Murdock advocates healthy eating to promote longevity. His Dole Nutrition Institute is dedicated to nutrition education through an award-winning monthly newsletter, health brochures, cookbooks, videos and the Dole Nutrition website. He recently dedicated the David H. Murdock Core Laboratory Building, the UNC Nutrition Research Building and the NC State Fruit and Vegetable Science Institute Building at the newly opened North Carolina Research Campus, representing a historic partnership with leading universities to advance knowledge about nutrition and disease prevention.