My Day With Dr. Oz

posted by Pilar Gerasimo 02/05/2014 0 comments

Back in 2008, I had a fun and surreal experience. I was invited to be a guest on Dr. Mehmet Oz’s Oprah Radio show.

At the time, Dr. Oz was just a well-respected cardiologist and author, and a popular Oprah-show regular. Not long after this interview, of course, he got his own Emmy-winning TV show and quickly became the country’s single biggest health influencer.

So how did I end up on his show?

Well, we’d had Dr. Oz on the cover of Experience Life magazine earlier that year, and during our photo shoot, he’d asked me how we consistently came up with so many great topic ideas.

That led to an interesting conversation, so we kept in touch, I promised to send him interesting ideas as they occurred to me, and not long afterward, a producer called and asked if I’d be willing to come and talk on air about the magazine, and about health media in general.

I considered the invitation for approximately one millionth of a second, and then said yes.

Doing the show was a blast. Dr. Oz was gracious and generous, and seemed genuinely interested in everything I had to say. (No wonder he got his own TV show!)

We were joined for a while by his lovely wife Lisa (who now also has her own TV show, as does his lovely daughter Daphne, so apparently it runs in the family).

At one point we were joined by Dr. Mike Roizen, and the three of us took live calls from listeners who wanted advice on their health issues. I’m proud to say that I think my advice was as good as that of the two docs. At least, I don’t think I killed anybody.

So, I’m sharing this little snippet of the show (which captures just a few minutes of our much longer interview) because it reflects just how clear I was about the “why, what and how” of the magazine, even way back then.

Plus, the snippet ends on a prophetic note — I bring up the cholesterol conundrum, a topic we were on top of far earlier than other mainstream media. In fact, we were even a little ahead of the very progressive Dr. Oz (he had author Gary Taubes on his show unpacking the still-controversial topic a few years later).

Anyway, that was a long time ago. I still send Dr. Oz show ideas from time to time, but I somehow think he no longer needs my help coming up with great material.

Perhaps someday, when my book comes out, I can elbow my way onto Dr. Oz’s TV show. In the meantime, I can bask in the glow of my little bygone encounter with America’s Favorite Doctor and take pleasure in the fact that “I knew him when….”

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