Dr. Susan Elizondo on Carotenoid Vegetables

Just 1 Thing (at a time) 4 Health

“Because changing habits and lifestyle is daunting without support.”


Featured Doctor:    Susan Elizondo, MS, OD

Dr. Susan Elizondo is a plant-based optometrist in Austin, Texas. Growing up near Houston, she loved to read and is still a bookworm to this day. When not seeing patients, you’ll often find her head in a book though now instead of sci-fi, the books are usually on nutrition and health.

Dr. Elizondo graduated 6th in her class in high school and went on a Houston Livestock Show & Rodeo scholarship to Texas A&M University where she earned a Bachelors in Genetics. After undergrad Dr. Elizondo relocated to the Rochester, New York and earned a Master of Science in Molecular and Cellular Biology and after graduate school she spent 4 months living in South America teaching English in the local schools and learning Spanish. Upon returning to the United States she attended optometry school in New York City at SUNY College of Optometry spending one externship abroad in China and post-graduation, Dr. Elizondo decided to return home to Texas.

In recent years Dr. Elizondo has developed a passion for nutrition as a method of healing diseases and practices a plant-based approach to health and healing. In the 8 years she has been practicing optometry she has turned from treating only eye diseases to educating patients on how systemic disease can lead to eye disease. She takes an active part in the local Whole Food Plant Based community in Austin and is one of the co-leaders of ATX Alive.

Did you know that eating carotenoid rich vegetables reduces your risk for eye diseases like: macular degeneration and glaucoma, and can slow down cataracts?

Dr. Elizondo’s Challenge to you:
Eat more carotenoid rich vegetables and reduce your risk for eye diseases like macular degeneration and glaucoma, and slow down the impact of cataracts.

Some of the underlying causes of most eye disease are oxidative stress and inflammation. Eating carotenoid rich vegetables help to quench them both. Overall systemic diseases create localized manifestations named macular degeneration and glaucoma.


Find out more about our Featured Doctor and the subject of Eye Health. Watch this video recording of the Physicians On Call LIVE, when Dr. Elizondo shared how increasing your eye health also improves other health factors.

Dr. Elizondo responded to questions and she shared her journey, the positivity of bringing family into the journey, and the interesting insights she gained because of being from Texas where eating beef is a normal past-time. Watch this video to find out answers to questions you may have had.

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To assist you on your journey, here are some easy to follow steps to help you meet This Week’s Challenge:

Carotenoid rich vegetables are anything yellow, orange, red, or dark leafy green. If it’s a fruit or vegetable with these rich colors, go for it. Here are some things you should know.

[1] Eat lots of Kale. Kale has about a hundred times more of the nutritional value than you would get in egg yolks. Fruits or vegetables are a better source of nutritional value than eggs, milk and other dairy products. Fruits and vegetables provide more value, even while eating a smaller amounts, and jthey have a pretty massive effect on macular degeneration.

[2] There’s a study showing that patients who ate five or more servings of spinach or collard greens a week, reduced the risk of macular degeneration by about 86 percent compared to those who ate leafy greens less than once a week. That’s a pretty huge result. It’s not like it’s just a little impact. It’s pretty big. Eat more carotenoid vegetables.

[3] Dark leafy greens are a big winner. Aside from their effect on oxidative stress and helping prevent inflammation is that they’re very nitrate rich, so they help protect that end of the allele lining of our blood vessels and help it function more normally over time. That systemic improvement in the whole body, also promotes eye health.

[4] Overall systemic diseases create localized manifestations. Many show up in the form of mascular degeneration and glaucoma.

[5] The Epoch Oxford study out of Europe looked at health-conscious, non-diabetic individuals (about 30,000) and found that as you go from high meat-eater (8+ servings the size of a deck of cards a day) to a moderate to low – pescetarian – that turned vegan, the cataract risk went down in a stepwise fashion. It reduced to being 40% less likely to get cataracts and being able to push off having cataract surgery longer because of this simple dietary change.

[6] Get these carotenoid rich vegetables with a delicious, fruit-healthy sweet smoothie in the morning.

Dr. Elizondo’s Favorites:

-Forks Over Knives
-What the Health

-The Healthiest Diet on the Planet by Dr. John McDougall
-How Not to Die by Dr. Michael Greger

-Forks Over Knives Cookbook by Dr. T. Colin Campbell


The 7 Original Heroes of the Movement

Honoring the 7 Original Heroes
of the Whole Food, Plant-Based Lifestyle Movement

Honoring Those Who Continue to Lead the Way…

Over the next several weeks and months, we will share a special video from each one of the 7, that is hosted by a Hippocrates Doc who will comment on the subject matter and answer any questions you may have. We are honored to join forces with these Original 7 and every other doctor who is a part of the Movement to bring a greater level of awareness, health and wellness to adults, children, pets, animals and the planet.

Enjoy what we’ve put together honoring the 7 Original Heroes of the Whole Food, Plant-Based Lifestyle Movement.

This week, we want you to get to know 
Dr. John A. McDougall
Physician, Nutrition Expert, Author and Founder of the nationally renowned McDougall Program in Santa Rosa, CA

A physician and nutrition expert who teaches better health through vegetarian cuisine, John A. McDougall, MD has been studying, writing, and speaking out about the effects of nutrition on disease for over 50 years. The McDougalls founded the nationally renowned McDougall Program in Santa Rosa, CA where medical miracles occur through diet and lifestyle changes. Author of “The Startch Solution” which has been known to not just change lives, but save lives, Dr. McDougall has recently co-authored AB 1478, a bill asking for even more informed consent for the people of the state of California.

In the News… Changes to

 Our intention is to bring you news and information that celebrates the things being accompished to move the WFPB conversation to a higher level, making a greater impact in lives and on the planet. We’re excited to change the name of this section to reflect how we really feel about the times and the changes occurring. We are Celebrating The Movement!


Celebrate with us as we join you on your journey to health and w0ellness. Now is your chance to be a bigger part of the ripple effect being created.

Be sure to tune in to watch every new  “Physicians On Call LIVE”  when each Doctor answers your questions LIVE on the topic of the week, or another issue you may be curious about.

Also ask your questions in our Facebook Group. Our Doctors and those who want to support you are there, ready and willing to help.

Don’t forget to Invite your family and friends to be a part of this journey with you. Through the END OF DECEMBER, everyone who subscribes gets 3 months of upgraded access to the program. 

All you have to do is send a text or FB message with a note to say “You’ve got to sign up for this. It’s free and it’s worth it!”

Tips from the Kitchen

-Deliciousness from the Kitchen

Love pasta?  

So do we and this is one that will love you back!  Family Favorite Pasta from Plentiful Wellness!


-Need a Recipe for a Tasty Dish? Here’s something that is Warm and Delicious!
Easy Vegan Scalloped Potatoes
This dish has all the delicious cheesy flavor but no dairy. Check this recipe out from Minimalist Baker. Yum!
We love to share our recipes and invite you to share yours in our Facebook Group.

Whole Food, Plant-Based Resources

Evidence based, medical research, other resources and stories that will impact you:

** The role of the carotenoids, lutein and zeaxanthin, in protecting against age-related macular degeneration: A review based on controversial evidence. 

** Carotenoids and Eye Health. Medical research proves that eating foods rich in carotenoids promotes eye health throughout life.

** American Optometric Association article confirms Doctors of optometry know that eating a variety of colorful fruits and vegetables can be good for eye health, and now new research may help with spreading the word among patients, and the general public

** Can Dark Green Leafy Vegetables Save Your Eyesight? A study by the National Eye Institute (NEI) suggested that eating a diet rich in green leafy vegetables (e.g., spinach, kale and collard greens) resulted in reduced AMD risk.


** Salads never looked as gorgeous as this!  Try this Roasted Carrot and Fennel Salad from our friends at Forks over Knives.  

** Snowstorm Ready Soups – 4 Soup Recipes to Keep You Warm


Be sure to join our Facebook Group and share your realizations. Here’s a handy link to easily get there and join Hippocrates Docs and those participating in the Just 1 Thing (at a time) 4 Health.

Are you keeping your journal up to date noting your food changes and insights?

We hope you enjoy this information and we’d love to hear your comments. Is there more you’re curious about learning?

Keep an eye out for the next Challenge video and of the Phsicians On Call Q&A recording.

You’re learning from 30 leading doctors regarding what they urge their patients to do to change their lifestyle for health! These doctors are passionate about the work they do helping their patients get the most amazing health outcomes and they want to help you.
Remember to share and invite your family and friends to join us on this journey. Let’s fuel the prevention and reversal of the leading chronic disease killers and help heal the world.

From all of us at Hippocrates Docs, on behalf of Just 1 Thing 4 Health,
have a great week and remember your Challenge for this week.

To Your Plantiful Good Health!

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