With the amazing advancements in medicine and health over the decades, why does it seem that we are as unhealthy as ever? Heart disease is the number one killer in America, taking almost 700,000 lives a year. After seeing the effects of heart disease in the lives of friends and family, in his docuseries Heart and Soul of a Champion, Dr. Baxter Montgomery challenges current philosophies and treatments of heart disease with a more holistic approach to return to peak performance.
Dr. Montgomery founded The Montgomery Heart & Wellness Center in Houston, Texas. After seeing the rise in heart disease and cardiac failure in America, he reasoned that medicine has not only not found a cure but may, in fact, be contributing to the problem. Under the belief that the human body has the innate ability to heal itself, Montgomery’s program is designed to strengthen the body to restore the heart and circulatory system naturally. The challenge Dr. Montgomery places before himself in the docuseries is to take four retired athletes at various stages of heart disease and return them to the peak physical condition of their youth. Impossible?
The athletes Heart and Soul of a Champion follows are Wendell “Air” Moseley, who suffered in the past from prostate cancer and whose treatment left him in a weakened condition. On the other hand, Kenny Banks is physically fit but suffers from abnormally elevated stress levels. Former NFL player Darrell Green is another case of a person who, on the outside, looks healthy but whose blood pressure is so high he should be hospitalized. Lastly, Raymond Waddy is obese, tired, and also has high blood pressure. Montgomery’s goal for the former sprinter was to eventually get him to run as fast as he did at the height of his running career.
“…take four retired athletes at various stages of heart disease and return them to the peak physical condition…”
Each of the athletes takes similar steps to recover. The first is their mindset. Rather than focus on the numbers, i.e., blood pressure and cholesterol levels, as health indicators, they focus on reaching physical goals instead. Next is the fasting and detox process, where the body is cleansed of harmful toxins. Then there’s increasing blood circulation by reducing blockages in the blood vessels and changing one’s diet.
I’ve covered many documentaries about health, and their common message is that health in the United States (weird but true) has gotten worse. Unfortunately, despite our efforts and advancements in medicine and diet, no solution has been found except allowing the body to do what it does best. That seems so simple, but in reality, it proves a challenge.
What Heart and Soul of a Champion does best is clearly explain what Dr. Montgomery is trying to accomplish and how the body works to heal itself in tandem with his regimen. The filmmaker places an almost impossible challenge before us, and we watch the subjects rise above. The most engaging challenge is Raymond Waddy, who, for the most part, is the average American like you and me. Is it impossible to restore him to total physical health? Stay tuned.
For screening information, visit the Heart and Soul of a Champion official website.
"…clearly explain[s] what Dr. Montgomery is trying to accomplish..."