Posted by: 4pack | December 1, 2008

“Ideal Shape” Profile: Dr. Kenneth Cooper, 76, Former Air Force Physician and Founder of the World-Famous Cooper Institute

DR. COOPER MAKES SOME GREAT COMMENTS ON “PERFECT FOODS” AND NECESSITY OF DIFFERENT TYPES OF EXERCISES TO BRING OGGIES TO A STATE OF “IDEAL SHAPE”…FOUR PACKS QUESTIONS THE “FIT BUT FAT” NOTION…VISCERAL FAT IS BAD NO MATTER HOW YOU “LOOK” AT IT…..

cooper“…Aerobics is only a part of a total conditioning program that includes proper weight, proper nutrition, proper exercise and proper supplementation. Proper exercise does include strength training and flexibility…”

“…I do not think there is a single perfect food, but it is a combination of fruits and vegetables, which are so important. If I had to choose a single perfect food, I would probably select salmon, which has a multitude of good qualities, including a high level of omega-3s…”

http://www.star-telegram.com/living/v-print/story/1064100.html 

At the hospital, his doctor told him he was simply out of shape, having gained 40 pounds and become inactive because of the stress of medical school. That firsthand experience inspired the young doctor to lose weight. A year later he ran his first marathon.

That health scare provided the inspiration for Cooper’s 1968 bestseller, Aerobics, and thus introduced a new word and a new concept to America. He has now written 19 books, which have been translated into 41 languages with a total of more than 30 million copies sold.

Cooper, now 76, is a former Air Force physician and founder of the world-famous Cooper Institute in Dallas. We caught up with him recently.

I’m a bit confused about a concept that has attached to The Cooper Institute – the idea of being fit but fat. Do you mean to imply that fat is not as bad as we thought, as long as you’re fit?

In no way am I endorsing obesity. But our studies clearly show that, if you look at all-cause cardiovascular mortality and even cancer mortality, you are better off being fat (over 30 on the BMI scale, 25 percent body fat), and fit (ranking in the top 80 percentile on fitness tests) than being thin (less than 20 on the BMI scale, less than 17 percent body fat), and in the bottom 20 percentile for fitness. You are better off being fat and fit as measured by time on the treadmill stress test than skinny and sedentary.

Do you think we’ve overemphasized aerobics compared to other components of fitness such as flexibility, strength training and good nutrition?

Aerobics is only a part of a total conditioning program that includes proper weight, proper nutrition, proper exercise and proper supplementation. Proper exercise does include strength training and flexibility.

What’s in your refrigerator and pantry right now?

Hopefully you will find healthy foods, including skim milk, fresh fruit, raw vegetables, bottled water and, yes, a small can of regular Pepsi. One of my vices is having an 8-ounce can of Pepsi four or five nights a week.

Your favorite “junk food?”

As most people know, my favorite junk food is chocolate-chip cookies.

Your favorite healthy breakfast?

Half a grapefruit, unsweetened oatmeal and a glass of skim milk (followed later with a half-cup of decaf coffee), and a total of eight vitamin and mineral supplements.

What do you consider the world’s most perfect food?

I do not think there is a single perfect food, but it is a combination of fruits and vegetables, which are so important. If I had to choose a single perfect food, I would probably select salmon, which has a multitude of good qualities, including a high level of omega-3s.

Which historical figure can you relate to most?

Those physicians who: (1) did the first cardiac catheterizations and coronary arteriograms, (2) performed open heart surgery (Michael DeBakey and Denton Cooley), (3) did the first arthroscopic surgeries of the knees and other joints. I know the criticism they had to endure, including appearing before the Board of Censors of a medical society, as I did when I introduced maximal performance treadmill stress testing to the Dallas medical community in 1970.

What do you do to reduce stress, relax and center your mind?

Since I am a typical type A individual, awakening at 4 a.m. and worrying about the day, I find that exercise prior to the evening meal, or at least some time in the evening hours, is the best way I can “unwind” and control the stress in my life.

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Responses

  1. Thought you would be interested in this short omega-3 video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eIgNpsbvcVM


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