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In today’s episode of The Plant Trainers Podcast we talk to Brian Hart, M.Ed. About how culture influences health. Brian is a highly experienced educator with over twenty-five years in the field as a teacher, administrator, and advocate for school change in both the public and private sectors. He is currently working as an educational consultant and program designer for his own consulting company, EVOLV.ED. Specifically, Brian specializes in working with organizations to help them create immersive, hands-on, experiential programs designed to transform thinking and build problem-solving skills.

As well, Brian and his wife, Jane Esselstyn RN, conduct seminars across the nation that help people “wrap their head, heart, and hands” around whole food, plant-based eating. He is a former Outward Bound instructor, wilderness EMT, plant-based chef, teacher, middle school principal, and carpenter. When not carting his kids to and from swim practice or editing their papers, Brian is a committed ultra-endurance athlete with four Ironman finishes to his name, among other run, bike, and ski events. Brian also holds a Rouxbe Cooking School professional certification in plant-based cooking.

Today we talk about how culture influences health, why we choose the foods we do and how it inevitably affects our health. It is really quite fascinating to think about why different cultures and religions eat particular foods. Leaving behind the foods you grew up on is hard. Telling your elders you choose not to take part in those traditional dishes is even harder. Today we look at the connection between food, culture and why we make the choices that we do.


In this episode we discussed:

  • Growing up SAD
  • The culture of sports and junk food
  • Religion, culture & socio-economics
  • Why is it so hard to just make good choices
  • Making good choices
  • Training ourselves
  • Culture of excess
  • Just for one day
  • Social and emotional challenges
  • Our genes
  • “But my grandma…”
  • What about the Paleo people?


Links to things we mentioned:

21 Day Plant-Powered Party

Brian Hart: WebsiteLinkedIn, Twitter, Medium

Jane’s Prevent and Reverse Heart Disease for Women Conference – March 11th @ The Cleveland Clinic Wellness Center

Prevent and Reverse Heart Disease with Dr. Caldwell Esselstyn – P149

Prevent and Reverse Heart Diesease with Jane Esselstyn – PTP123

The Engine 2 Seven Day Rescue by Rip Esselstyn

The Prevent and Reverse Heart Disease Cookbook by Ann Crile Esselstyn and Jane Esselstyn

The Progress Paradox by Greg Easterbrook

Nudge: Improving Decisions About Health, Wealth and Happiness by Richard H. Thaler and Cass R. Sustein 

Endothelial Cells Explained

The Pleasure Trap by Doug J. Lisle and Allan Goldhammer

Your Survival Instinct Is Killing You by Marc Shoen and Kristen Loberg


Thank you to this month’s Patrons for supporting us on Patreon:


Miriam Selick

Millie Pearson

Stu Dolnick


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4 thoughts on “How Culture Influences Health with Brian Hart – PTP163”
  1. Avatar Miya

    Though I personally enjoy my schmaltz and won’t give up processed foods in moderation, I am glad that you have found a lifestyle that makes you feel healthy and happy.

  2. Avatar David Rafailov

    I loved this podcast! Just by the title of it I wanted to listen to it. I grew up in a Jewish home, and that means there’s a lot of non healthy foods during Holidays and Sabbath dinners. I agree and like some of the solutions provided in this podcast, and I do think that unhealthy eating can be prevented, we just have to educate the younger generations. As Adam said, some people need their wake-up call from their Doctors to tell them to change their diet as their life is in danger and I agree with that, and it applies more to young people because we think we are invincible, as Brian Hart said. I think younger generations have to be taught about this from a younger age and not be lied to.

    • Avatar admin

      Thanks David. Education is definitely key!

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