Many years ago I had the great pleasure of sitting at the feet (not literally) of Dr. Denis Burkitt a great physician/surgeon, recipient of the highest international medical awards, Christian missionary and teacher, and renowned medical scholar, whose epidemiological studies in Africa led, among other things to the first links between viral disease and the development of some types of cancer. His mapping of the incidence of a particular tumor in children across parts of Africa led to the connection between it and the spread of a virus, probably via insect bites. The tumor bears his name: Burkitt’s Lymphoma.

He is further known for changing the way the West looks at dietary health, being among the first to point out the dangers of refined carbohydrates and the benefits of foods rich in dietary fiber. I remember his lecture on the topic to this day and believe I have repeated portions of it to thousands of patients over the last thirty years.