Dr. Bomi Joseph has been bio-hacking humans and “PhytoHacking” plants since 1984. He promotes the concept of “endohealth” or “health from within”.
Dr. Joseph worked for his uncle, Douglas Johnson, of Johnson & Johnson Ayurvedic Pharmacy established 1832, in Allepey, Kerala, when Dr. Joseph was just years old. He was exposed to the medicinal properties of plants at a very young age and also the techniques to extract their functional ingredients.
He earned his Ph.D. from The Ohio State University and his dissertation was on ligand binding to Protein Receptors on cell surfaces. Dr. Joseph is an alumnus of the Harvard Business School (PMD 58) and is also a member of the American Society of Pharmacognosy and a founding member of The Obesity Society.
He is a leading authority on food related diseases, food & drug safety, and drug intolerance. He continues to bio-hack humans and PhytoHack plants as the Director of Peak Health Center in Los Gatos, CA.
Why did you choose to become a Health Researcher?
I come from a family of doctors. My brother is a neurosurgeon. I have always known that doctors study and treat disease. I have eternally been fascinated with health—which is the opposite of disease. I have been obsessed with finding a way to numerically measure health and to improve it continuously. I couldn’t find ANY classes in medical school about actual health. So, I did a Ph.D. focussed on studying the variables affecting health.
I am one of the early pioneers who realized that degeneration of the body was taking over as the new scourge from infectious diseases. And that “food” was one of the main factors causing this degeneration.
86% of all premature death in USA today is from degenerative disease, more commonly known as Non-Communicable Diseases (NCDs.) I firmly believe that these degenerative diseases can be reversed by eradicating the variable that is causing the degeneration. Pharmaceutical drugs were optimized for communicable diseases and only make NCDs worse.
I call myself an Anti-Doctor (www.antidr.com). If I have my way, everyone will be healthy. And the medical establishment will be broke.
What area of medicine do you specialize in?
I did my Ph.D. thesis in 1986 on ligand interactions with lipoproteins on cell receptor sites. Since 2012, eight Nobel prizes in Chemistry and Medicine have been awarded to people conducting similar research. Two of the world’s top ten best-selling drugs (Advair Diskus and Abilify) target these receptors.
There are 20 medical specialties between “allergy” and “urology.” With scores of subspecialties. All dealing with diseases.
I specialize is being outside the gates of a hospital, helping people never have to walk into a hospital looking for a department starting with “allergy”, or ending with “urology”, or the tween between.
What do you love about your job?
It’s extremely satisfying. It’s quite unique because there is no “system” to feed us information or manipulate us. We have to figure out almost everything ourselves. We get attacked a lot by the established players. The more viciously we get attacked, the more flattered I am because we are on the correct path and succeeding. No one attacks something that is irrelevant.
When we find the cause or natural cure for a degenerative disease, the gratitude from our consumers is abundant and the satisfaction of our effort is immense.
How long did it take for you to become successful in your career?
I have been doing this for over 34 years and I don’t believe I am close to being “successful.” I am up against ignorance, an entrenched, powerful incumbent establishment and apathy. It’s going to take my lifetime, and beyond, to make a dent and a difference.
What is a gap in medicine that if addressed will make a significant difference in the health care industry?
This is an easy answer.
We do NOT have a “health care industry.” We have a “Disease Care Industry.” A very large and inefficient one.
There are two things that need to be addressed to make any meaningful difference in this Disease Care Industry-
- Series of Administrations, starting with Ronald Reagan, slashed the FDA (https://prospect.org/article/who-strangled-fda) and appointed cronies from the Food and Pharmaceutical industries to senior executive positions. The FDA needs to be funded better, and career FDA employees need to make management decisions. Currently the foxes are guarding the hen house and we are wondering why there are feathers all over the place.
- By Law, the FDA has mandated that only synthetic pharmaceutical drugs can be considered as “medicine”. Anything natural, from nature, is considered a “food”, or “natural supplement” and cannot be considered a medicine.
This is antiquated and misguided. Synthetic pharmaceutical drugs are effective against infections and communicable diseases, of which there were many when the FDA was formed. 86% of premature deaths today are from degenerative diseases and pharmaceutical drugs are ineffective against these. Worse, side effects of pharmaceutical drugs only cause further degeneration of the body.
Starvation is a degenerative disease. It causes the organs to degenerate, resulting in death. There is not a single pharmaceutical drug that can reverse the effects of starvation. An apple does the trick. So does the banana, and a host of other natural products.
I picked starvation because it is an easy example to make this point: there are many products from nature that reverse degeneration. In this context, these foods are “medicine.” And there is no pharmaceutical drug, under the FDA’s definition, that can cure degeneration caused by starvation. What good is the definition of “medicine” when it cannot treat 86% of diseases in society?
What do you do in order to mentally separate yourself from your job?
It’s a cliché but I believe work is what I do and not who I am. I have a myriad of personal interests and I am quite entertained and challenged doing personal activities.
The mind is the most powerful thing in our being. People’s brain structures are very similar, but the thoughts that come from our physical brain are unique.
To have a strong mind I need a strong body. I believe I can’t have a strong mind with a weak body. So, I train my body every morning at 5 a.m. I have been doing that since I was 14 years old.
Having a powerful, strong body doesn’t mean my mind will be strong as well. I actively meditate and train my mind to make it strong.
How do you unwind after a particularly stressful day?
There are not many days I find truly stressful. It’s a way of thinking. I believe that I am a problem solver. Life is a series of problems and my role in life is to knock them off one by one. So, I don’t see problems as a big deal. If I wished life to have no problems, I’d be miserable.
Having said this, I do have numerous activities that disengage me from stress:
- I stretch a lot and am quite limber. Getting into a deep stretch and holding it for a few minutes is very therapeutic and relaxing. I meditate when I stretch and doing a series of stretches can have me in a relaxed and meditative state, for an hour or two.
- I practice martial arts and founded a style called “Shatriya Yoga” or “Martial Yoga.” It has a series of martial dances or “Nartanas” that are from historic Vedic scriptures (Dhanuveda, circa 1700 B.C.). “Meditation in Motion” is what I call it. Mentally and physically sinking into these takes me away from worldly hassles.
- I have a Latin dance coach and am picking up dance moves that are new- Salsa, Meringue, Tango, Bachata etc.
- I’m a private pilot. When I start a pre-flight check list, I enter into a different world of soaring like an eagle.
- Hanging around true friends is always a boost.
- Playing the guitar.
- Planning my meals for the week and cooking.
What is the toughest decision you’ve had to make in the last few months?
We had a very large deal with a flashy character who flew around in his private jet and kept extracting more and more concessions from me in exchange for a “huge order pretty soon.” Next week became next month which became two months.
He was very intrusive, demanded immediate attention, blustered and threatened constantly. On one typical call, I told him to “stuff-your-deal-where-the-sun-don’t-shine.” Looking back, I preferred the predictability of consistent growth to the chaos of someone else jerking us around.
What do you think it is that makes you successful?
This is a vague question because everyone’s definition of success is different. If success is defined as accomplishing goals, then the focus turns to what goals are you setting? It is easy to accomplish simple goals. Chances of accomplishing difficult goals are lower.
I believe that you make none of the shots you don’t take. So, I am not afraid to take the shots.
If I am going to take a shot, I might as well aim high. If I aim for the stars and miss, I may still hit the moon. That’s a lot higher than aiming for a tree top.
If I aim for the stars and whiff, I pick myself up and shoot again. I am an optimist. I don’t look back. I have no fear and I have a short memory of failures.
What has been your most satisfying moment in your career as a Health Professional?
I am never satisfied. Dissatisfaction and failures drive me. The stuff that didn’t work consumes me. I pay scant attention to laurels and accomplishments.
I’d pick these as some of the (briefly) satisfying moments of my career so far-
- After 28 years of working on this, We just released the Deep Health™ Device and the Deep Health™ App in the Apple Store (via invitation by TestFlight). It is the world’s first digital mass market histology device and it gives you a true measure of your health. The world’s largest insurance company, Prudential, has licensed it for a rollout in Asia. If you are interested in a Deep Health™ Device, email us at email@example.com.
- We identified a plant whose extract drastically reduces Type-2 diabetes in 45-60 days. The results are astounding and we are publishing a scientific paper on this. The product, Diabet, is available at www.phyto-farmacy.com.
- We isolated the alkaloid Amaryllidaceae from Galanthus woronowii that is being used to neutralize Quinolinic acid in the brain. Quinolinic acid causes the neurotoxic decay in CTE and Alzheimer patients. The product, Cerebelus, is available at www.phyto-farmacy.com.
- We have identified 3 compounds from plants that act as “anti-checkpoint” agents and show great promise as “phyto-immuno-therapy” agents against cancer.
- We have more than 60 plant products we have developed and tested against degenerative diseases. 36 of them are available at www.phyto-farmacy.com.
What does the future hold for you? What are you most excited about?
The Deep Health™ Device is being rolled out nationwide in eight countries in Asia. For the first time in history, we are going to be measuring the actual health of entire populations. We have an artificial intelligence engine analyzing this data and tying it to actual disease risk. We already know a lot about health. In the next few years we are not going to be reliant on scientific studies based on “samples”, models, hypothesis and guesses. We are going to know definitely about all the variables that affect the health of various people.
There is a lot of misinformation about health. Some of it is peddled by marketers selling products. Some of it is simple-minded thinking. Some stems from incomplete scientific understanding. Corporations also muddy the scientific waters by funding studies that point away from the real “cause-effect.” We have not been active in debunking all this. But we will be disseminating clear information a few years from now and most people will be able to decipher facts from fiction then.
What books have inspired you?
- “The Unfettered Mind” by Takuan Soho— This is one of my all time favorite books. I re-read it every few years. This book, written in 1610 as a guide for the samurai Yagyu Munenori, details with great understanding how the mind should be trained and refined for normal life and when faced with intense conflict.
- “The Richest Man in Babylon” by George Clason— This is a must read classic about managing money and finding economic freedom.
- “Musashi” by Eiji Yoshikawa— The life and times of Miyamoto Musashi. The first time I skimmed for the story. Every time after that I get more and more about the mind, philosophy and conflicts of a strong leader, with a powerful mind, versus the social pack that has a very different mindset.
- “7 habits of highly effective people” by Steven Covey— An “Aha” book that flipped me from a reactive to a proactive person.