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The Zone comes to Latin America

By Dr. Barry Sears

Dr. Sears talks with Cecilia Morel, the First Lady of Chile.             Dr. Sears gives a lecture in Argentina.

Last week I completed a 10-day visit to Argentina and Chile, giving a number of seminars on the Zone Diet in both countries. With the support of our Zone partners in each country, significant progress was made in introducing the Zone Diet concept to their respective populations.

Our Argentinean partners put together an extensive media tour that included the major newspapers and magazines in that country. In addition, I made several scientific presentations to a variety of medical schools that linked the relationship of diet to cellular inflammation. At the same time, I was pleasantly surprised to find that several members of the National Team in soccer were also Zone devotees.

In addition, I met with a high-ranking official of the Argentina Olympic Committee who has been given the responsibility to bring home 10 Gold medals in the 2016 Olympics in neighboring Brazil. As a long-term Zone advocate himself, he told me that he is making following of the Zone Diet mandatory for the athletes he believes have the greatest chance to be Gold-medal winners.

I should mention that while Argentinean beef may be the best in the world, the portions served were gigantic. I had to apologize to the owners of the various restaurants that I eat only the amount beef that can fit in the palm of my hand. It was not a reflection on the quality of the beef, but a commitment to Zone principles.

Going to Chile led to another excellent reception of the Zone Diet ranging from my meeting with the First Lady of Chile to discuss childhood obesity in Chile. (It's as bad as in the United States.) A talk at the 9th International Conference on Alternative Medicine in addition to giving seminars at several medical schools followed this special event. Unlike the Argentineans, the Chileans are not big consumers of beef but massive consumers of bread. This makes bringing the Zone Diet to Chile a little more difficult than Argentina (where they only have to reduce the amount of beef consumed at a meal). But since Chile is also one of the largest producers of fruits and vegetables in the world, it is possible for the substitution of those colorful carbohydrates for bread and pasta.

Fortunately in both countries I was secure in the knowledge that both Zone partners had already developed good foundations to maintain the surging interest in the Zone Diet that I perceived in my presentations. After all, if the Zone Diet can make it in Italy and Spain, it can also happen in these two countries, which have among the highest percentage of their population in Latin America is made up of immigrants from Spain and Italy more than 100 years ago.