Lehr Lecture Hall at Pritikin Longevity Center — Photo courtesy of John Cameron / Active City Travel
It took nearly 40 years for the world to catch up to Nathan Pritikin and his then-radical ideas about diet and lifestyle. What is conventional advice today – eat more fruit and vegetables, consume less salt and sugar and exercise regularly – was once hearsay.
More than 100,000 guests worldwide have visited the Pritikin Longevity Center and Spa in Miami, both to prevent and reverse problems such as excess weight, heart disease, diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol and cancer risk factors.
A hallmark of Pritikin is its strong medical presence. Upon intake, your current health and fitness levels are assessed.
Certified physicians provide each guest with the expert medical attention required for achieving major life changes. A stress test is given to make sure those not used to exercising don’t overextend themselves.
Pritikin's lap pool — Photo courtesy of John Cameron / Active City Travel
You’ll stay on-site at the Pritikin Center in a Standard Villa room or at luxurious Trump National Doral, a short walk away. (Either way, your stay at Pritikin gives you access to the Doral facilities, which include the beautiful swimming pools and championship golf courses.) Here, you’ll be in a community of like-minded individuals who want to transform their lives.
A typical day at Pritikin starts with breakfast, followed by 45 minutes of cardio, then followed by weight training and alternating days with stretching.
After a buffet lunch, where diners are encouraged to start with large salads followed by hot vegetable–based entrees, participants attend lectures to learn the skills to maintain the Pritikin lifestyle when they return home in a week or two or three, depending on the client.
Dining room at Pritikin — Photo courtesy of John Cameron / Active City Travel
Two factors set Pritikin apart from all other health resorts: 1) its scientifically documented results and 2) its education program that teaches guests how to sustain these results.
Pritikin’s faculty – leaders in the fields of medicine, nutrition, psychology and exercise – lead eye-opening classes focused on subjects including dining out, reading labels and calorie density.
The popular lecture on processed food label reading is put into practice with a fun shopping trip, complete with a scavenger hunt for the healthiest products at a local supermarket. You’ll learn to decipher the correct information on the back of the package.
A few pointers: Never believe anything on the front of the package, as it’s all unregulated marketing. Make sure the first ingredient is not sugar. Red flags are fat, sodium, added sugar and refined grain.
Another popular lecture – "Sitting Is the New Smoking" – challenges our contemporary sedentary lifestyle. Continuous sitting for more than three hours per day means you’re 64% more likely to die from heart disease.
In other lectures, participants learn about mindful eating. Did you know that stomach receptors malfunction if you multitask while eating?
Stop eating while comfortable. It takes 15 to 20 minutes for your stretch receptors to work. Start with servings of vegetables and fruit, and you’ll feel full sooner. The concept of food displacement is related to calorie density, a key Pritikin idea.
Pritikin is more than a diet; it’s a lifestyle. A one-week stay at Pritikin Longevity Center is the inspiration for permanent change that includes weight loss, a sensible exercise plan and effective tools to make good nutritional choices, both at restaurants and supermarkets.