Travis Stork’s medical career didn’t begin until he started working in a free clinic after college. Now the math major turned MD shares health tips with the entire country on “The Doctors.” Stork and his colleagues discuss health and medical issues like obesity and heart health.
Stork chatted with CBS Local’s DJ Sixsmith about his career, some healthy options for Super Bowl Sunday and how to keep your heart healthy.
DJ Sixsmith: When did you first realize you wanted to be a doctor?
Dr. Travis Stork: It was actually after college. I was a math major in college and was working in Washington D.C. at the free clinic. I was in awe of the doctors there. I made a major career change in my early 20’s. I went back to school and the next thing you know, I was in med school on my way to being a full-fledged MD.
DS: Obesity is one of the big topics on the show this month. What can people do if they are trying to lose a significant amount of weight?
TS: I think the key in dealing with obesity is you don’t have to be in a rush to lose weight. If your goal is to be healthier, which is the most important goal of all, worry less about the scale and more about how you feel. It doesn’t take crazy changes. People feel a lot of pressure to join a gym, but really it can be as simple as joining a walking program if you never walk. Work on walking 30 minutes a day or standing more and sitting less. Make little changes in the kitchen like cutting back to one soda a day or switch out all the white pastas and breads for whole grain. You’ll start to see results with those simple switches. It starts to become something that is habitual. I call it turning a vicious cycle into a virtuous cycle of health.
DS: The Super Bowl is this Sunday. What are some healthy options people can snack on?
TS: Go with some traditional things people love. I had a recipe in my last book for veggie nachos. The base of your nachos can be these bean based chips, which are basically beans in a chip form or a whole grain chip. Beans are such a great source of protein and fiber. Then add in some healthy ingredients like guacamole, which have heart healthy fats in there or jalapeno peppers, which are a metabolism booster. Salsa is loaded with nutrients in the tomatoes and onions. Hot spices are a natural anti-inflammatory. Instead of sour cream, I use Greek Yogurt. It’s high in protein and loaded with probiotics. You should put cheese on your nachos. Fried chips and nacho cheese sauce are not good for your heart. Use real cheese and when the game is over, you’ll feel better.
DS: February is American Heart Month. What can couples do together to stay in shape?
TS: I love that February is heart health month and also the month of Valentine’s Day. We know that couples that are healthy together, stay together and hopefully are increasing their longevity. The biggest thing I would tell anyone out there is if the two of you can cook more at home while using healthy ingredients, you can make that your quality time together. Instead of going to a bar, go to a spin class or some other workout class. We’ve learned on “The Doctors” that people with a support network are so much more likely to succeed.
DS: Finally, what is the best part of being on “The Doctors”?
TS: I get to talk about things I’m passionate about. I get to talk about health and on top of it, we have a pretty good time doing it.
Check your local listings to watch “The Doctors.”