Dr. Oz: It's not that it's a false assumption. And being very fair about this, there are some physicians who are going to be offended. However, it depends on how the issue is broached. So I actually encourage patients to get second opinions because I'm talking to them about heart surgery. I want them to be absolutely positive that I'm right so that when we go into it, if things don't work out, they know it was the right decision to go ahead.

Oprah: Okay.

Dr. Oz: So if you go in to a doctor as a professional and say, you know, with respect say, "I appreciate what you've done for me. Doctor means teacher. Thank you for sharing that information with my. I think to be well educated, I should get additional thoughts. Is okay with you?" It's going to be very difficult for a physician to say no, and they will give you the medical records and they'll feel honored that you've talked to them in that way, and I've seen this over and over and over again. And you know what? If they don't feel honored, you have the wrong doctor.

Oprah: You have the wrong doctor. You have the wrong doctor. All right. Debbie from Springfield, hello, Springfield, Missouri, has a question about artificial sweeteners. Debbie, what's your question?

Debbie: Hi, Oprah. Hi, Oz. Hi, Harpo team.

Oprah: Hi.

Debbie: First of all, I want to thank you guys for taking our questions. I really appreciate the information. You know that saying life hands you lemon, make lemonade?

Oprah: Mm-hmm.

Debbie: Well, of course, nobody wants to drink sour lemonade so we've got sugar and we've got artificial sweeteners. And I understand from watching your shows that there's a lot of shortcomings to those. I understand also that there's a new sweetener out called PureVia which contains stevia, a natural plant sweetener. So my question is this. Dr. Oz, is PureVia a healthy alternative and is it good for diabetics?

Dr. Oz: Well, Debbie, the first issue I need to address I think to answer this fairly is to ask you what the purpose of you using the artificial sweetener is. If it's diabetes, that might make sense. But if it's for weight loss, I'm telling you, there is no data that I've ever heard of, and by the way, this is an international webcast. If someone out there has information to change my mind, please send it to us at But the most important thing to realize is you are not going to lose weight because you're taking a sugar alternative. In fact, these are called "diet drinks," but these are big companies. They never ever talk about weight loss trials, because they've never done any. So that stated, here's what I think about them.

Oprah: Okay.

Dr. Oz: Stevia—it comes from an herb. It's a newer product. It is natural. I think of the options that are out there, it's one of the better ones. If you wanted to use it, I think it's a reasonable thing to try. There have been a few trials where it's affected, you know, sperm counts and the like, but I don't think that across the board—

Oprah: Made them more or less?

Dr. Oz: Less.

Oprah: Okay.

Dr. Oz: But I don't think it's—there's but—anything really about stevia that makes me alarmed. I actually like agave personally.

Oprah: I love agave.

Dr. Oz: It's very, very sweet, so you don't need very much of it and you can add it in there. It's the same root as tequila, so I guess you could ferment it and drink it. But—but the agave is great for tea.

Oprah: Is that why it makes—it makes margaritas so good?

Dr. Oz: Maybe that's it.

Oprah: That's when I first—no, really, that's where I first ever heard of it because somebody was at my house and they were making tequilas and they had the agave instead of the—

Dr. Oz: I bet that's why they gave it to you.

Oprah: Yeah, yeah, okay.

Dr. Oz: Now the big ones, of course, that are out there—

Oprah: Now I use it on oatmeal. I use just a drop on oatmeal.

Dr. Oz: Me, too. My oatmeal is—steel-cut oatmeal.

Oprah: Absolutely. The only way to go. The only way to go.

Dr. Oz: Steel-cut oatmeal. Some flaxseed oil—

Oprah: Yep.

Dr. Oz: —for the omega-3s instead of butter. I like some walnuts in there. That's optional. Some raisins for sweetness or agave, and that's what I have—

Oprah: You use flaxseed oil on your oatmeal?

Dr. Oz: Instead of butter. It's the best. It's the best, believe me.

Oprah: Really. I hadn't tried that.

Dr. Oz: You'll love that. Love that.

Oprah: Really.

Dr. Oz: So you're getting a wonderful source of omega-3s

Oprah: Do you use just like a tablespoon?

Dr. Oz: A tablespoon—I actually like a lot of it.

Oprah: Wow.

Dr. Oz: Again, I don't mind getting my fat in that form because it's not coming from—

Oprah: So would I be getting the same thing if I—I use just chopped almonds or walnuts. Would that do the same thing as the flaxseed oil?

Dr. Oz: Walnuts will give you a lot of omega-3s. Almonds, although I love almonds, they don't have nearly the omega-3s that walnuts have.

Oprah: Okay.

Dr. Oz: So they're a good source, but they're not the same as putting flaxseed. Plus, what are you putting in—don't you—you put butter in it then?

Oprah: No, no butter at all, no. I put a little skim milk, blueberries, raspberries and a little chopped almonds.

Dr. Oz: I don't put milk in it. If you're putting skim milk in it, then you won't want to put flaxseed oil.

Oprah: Okay.

Dr. Oz: Instead of your milk then.

Oprah: Okay.


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