10 Mar, 2021099 Dr. Pooch : Giving Health Education to Kids with “Get Well Johnny” Books
In this story-making business, sometimes I meet people and I’m so bowled over by their vision and what they’re trying to do that I just have to get their story out there.
One of which is my guest, Dr. Hassan Diop also known as Dr. Pooch who positively impacts the lives of children. Helping them to be as healthy as they can possibly be.
He’s teaching this generation of children, health literacy. Training them to be “little holistic health coaches” because he believes children are the most honest portrayals of what it is to be human.
What is his mission? What about his books? What can we learn from it?
Let’s get to him more in this game-changing podcast and tell us what is your biggest takeaway?
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Pete Cohen 0:01
Happy beautiful day it's Pete Cohen. It is the Mi365 podcast. Now sometimes I meet people and I'm so bowled over by their vision and what they're trying to do that I just have to get their story out there because we're in the story making business. And I really encourage you to listen very closely to what my guest who is known as Dr. Pooch is doing in the world. Looking to positively impact the lives of children, helping them to be as healthy as they can possibly be. This is a game changing podcast. I'll see you after the theme tune.
Pete Cohen 1:05
So I'm so excited that my guest today is Dr. Pooch.
Pete Cohen 1:10
How are you, my friend. Thank you so much for joining me.
Dr. Pooch 1:12
How are you? Thank you, thank you for having me.
Pete Cohen 1:15
Listen It's my absolute pleasure but first off, what is your real name?
Dr. Pooch 1:20
My real name is Hassan Diop. Hassan Diop.
Pete Cohen 1:26
But you're known as a Doctor Pooch. Tell me how did that name, how did that name come about?
Dr. Pooch 1:31
I've been Dr. Pooch my whole life. As long as I can remember, my family members and extended, you know, friends and such, have been calling me Doctor Pooch and it's amazing what you call the child, that child will grow into that name so be careful with what nicknames you give to your kids, you know, they will grow into, if it's a little bad bad then that's where they're gonna grow into. And fortunately, they call me Dr. Pooch, and I am Dr. Pooch I literally vibrate with that every day and it just reminds me of full lecture.
Pete Cohen 2:09
So what does it mean to you because what does that mean Doctor Pooch mean to you because I've had people calling you like the Dr. Seuss, of what you tell me.
Dr. Pooch 2:19
Yeah so, because I'm in this health space. I've tried to find meaning for it you know it's not something that I consciously like named myself so it's not like I, you know, I had to find meaning to it after and the meaning is really revealing itself right now so I'd say because I'm in this health space right the little belly pooch that he will have justified it that the actual name by that. It does rhyme with Seuss, there's not many things that rhyme with Sue's wet hood. Right. So, I just found an identity through that. It's, it's, it's amazing. Dr Seuss, who somebody is that keeps inspiring me. I've been telling you that I'm working on releasing the 12 books. At this point there's six books that are there how to get well Johnny book series, and once 12 Come out, read Dr. Seuss became the icon, Dr. Seuss that we know of today. According to something that I read, if I'm not mistaken, it was after his 12 books so his 13th book, is when it really took off for him right. And so I have 12 Right now, I have some a whole lot of other books that I'm getting ready to release so I can't wait to release to just get this 12 out there into the into the, into the world, and then continue and really do more work because there's a lot of work to be done.
Pete Cohen 3:54
And there is when I heard your stories that we met through clubhouse with people that don't know what that is, they'll find out. I heard your story and I immediately thought hang on a second, the world has to hear your story because in essence, you know, tell us what it is that you're, that you're doing and what is it that you're going to continue to do?
Dr. Pooch 4:14
While I'm teaching this generation of children, health literacy, I'm training them to be little holistic health coaches the children are the most honest portrayals of what it is to be human. I mean they're just they're perfect, right, and so they're so connected to the message of holistic health so, telling them that refined sugar is bad for you, you know, an apple is better than then, you know, apple juice or apple soda right i mean that's, that's, It's, it's basic knowledge to them right they understand that you don't have to convince them. So, my goal is just to train them and to give them these tools, but for them to take these tools home, and then convince their parents and talk to their parents about these things into recipes with their parents and do activities and such with their parents and I've even extended it to them doing certain, let's say, Good Samaritan acts right like there's, in my, in my book, Toxic tales that I'll be releasing soon. I developed a letter to a neighbor, right, so, so imagine a child and, like, imagine a child that you see in your neighborhood, you wave to that child, you know, a little cute you know boy or girl, and that child writes you a letter and says hi my name is, You know, whatever I'm, I'm such as, you know, years old. I've noticed how beautiful your lawn is. And I was wondering if you're using the chemical that we know of is roundup and which contains glyphosate, right, and glyphosate, if you didn't know, is, is, is responsible for forgiving irritable bowel syndrome syndrome has, has been connected to, you know, all of these like irritable syndromes leaky gut, right, all of these things, and, and you're getting this letter from a child from the, from your neighbor child, right, which is informing you. And now holding you accountable as a neighbor so as like micro influencing. I've included all types of little things in these books that once, some once a child goes through the 12 part initiation. It's a wrap their health conscious. You know, I plugged everything into it, and, and now their parents are part of that journey and so it just keeps on growing.
Pete Cohen 6:49
I like it. I like that approach, because normally health starts with the parents and it's that really okay but that's a little bit more challenging right here they say you can't teach an old dog new tricks, right, but you can teach a new dog new tricks, and they can be the infiltrators. That sounds like it's part of your mission, right. And by the way, I've just thought of someone who I can connect you with gonna do that. Who's in not far from you.
Dr. Pooch 7:16
Yeah, let's do it.
Pete Cohen 7:17
Now, I just thought someone she's, she's a big hitter and she's definitely behind all of that she tried that whole months arta that whole. Yeah, that whole round up business, you know, it's like, Anyway, that's, let's make this connect let's make things happen. Tell me about some of the lengths that you've already gone to, in order to make a difference and some of the differences that you've already made because I know you've got on the streets right and you literally will sell those books in markets and talk to parents and kids tell me some of the lens that you've gone and the places that you've gone.
Dr. Pooch 7:49
Yeah, I mean I made an admission to just travel throughout, and really make this name and validate this product through the inner city in South Central Los Angeles right I'm from South Central watts. Compton. You know all just like the whole Air View you know the whole like Los Angeles area. So, I would literally pull up, I have my I have my books in the trunk of my car. I went out, you know have a kind of a bag that I could carry a couple of sets with me, and golden barbershops, I would, I would go to hair salons, right, go to nail shops, you know I was, I was making money, like, you could make up to 500 in a day, selling children's books about health, to black, black and brown people, you know, in the inner city like, to me that's, if that's not validating a product, and people are just showing me love all day like I'm holding conversations and just pouring love into people and pouring like holistic health knowledge like, You know, I can, I can show my books, right, one second.
Pete Cohen 9:04
No problem, get the books.
Dr. Pooch 9:06
So I would, I would, I would hold up these books, and I would say, okay, so, so what's your what's your favorite superfood, right, and then the adult will be they will be stuck like broccoli, kale, eat, like the same things right. And so, so, what I was doing there was just assessing the like polling, what, what's actually going on. Do people really know what superfoods are okay so what's, what then is the is will be the result of a whole generation of kids having a favorite superfood at a young age, like, how we're so you know I'm just validating these properties these these books in the streets of LA like, you know, and, and making a cool living like I was I was I was really just connecting and living and building relationships and validating the product the product so, you know, I've been to every neighborhood I've been to, you know, throughout the farmer's markets and all of these, because unfortunately like the inner city is a food desert. Right, yes it's, there's for me
Pete Cohen 10:20
I've seen it, I mean I've seen it, I mean I just can't but I mean it's not great here but it where you are, it's just like really ridiculous thought of someone else I can actually connect you with Joe disarmer, who's the founder of Spartan Races. I'm sure he would love to talk to you, because he's all about, you know, we have got to do something about this, you know, you go down the street and all you see is, McDonald's, Burger King, Taco Bell. You know it's just this, there's no life in that food it's just, it just destroys people.
Dr. Pooch 10:53
And, and, you know, you go to a place like content, content has the richest soil. If you go to if you go to content, you look in somebody's front yard or their backyard. You're, like, the soil is is so dark and rich, it was, it was originally a farming, you know, agricultural place right. Yeah, so, so it's just switching like we always have what we need, you know, we always have what we need. So it's, It's just, and it's always in our immediate surroundings, and it's just making a little switch, and, and these kids can have everything that they, that they need at this point in time we can provide, we can start that shift in humanity. Hopefully because this this is the bottom line like we're in the first generation where parents may outlive their kids, and if that statistic is true, which is, is right it is saying it is so, so here we are, like, if we don't do anything. It's a wrap, you know, we can call it we could just say okay like we're the generation that didn't were the first generation of parents that didn't use it, do we what do we want to do we want to be that.
Pete Cohen 12:11
That's a really good message to actually ask Do you want to be a part of this, you know, do you want to be a part of we don't do anything about this. We are live our children because of how they live their life, I think that that's a really good thing to get people to, to kind of think differently about I mean the statistics are crazy and 97.3% of Americans are unhealthy by for basic measures right they either smoke, they don't eat fruit and vegetables they don't do 150 minutes of activity, you know, even just walking, and we're profoundly adjusted to a very sick society and it's not just America right i mean it's most Western countries and other countries are just following suit the convenience. The convenience world. I was gonna say something about that but there was something where it's gone. I'm sure it'll come back, but I suppose what is it this, I mean it sounds like a stupid question but what is it that's driving you. What's the force behind you what where do you get your, your drive from, What do you see happening in the future.
Dr. Pooch 13:15
I mean, we're, we're, we're at a critical shift in humanity, where we're at this turning point where I mean you see like, kind of, Well, at least, I see. Governments shifting, you know, how they're how they're interfacing with their with their populations right. We're seeing, you know, globalization happening at Crazy rates like we're seeing the game changing. Overall, like, I'm looking at the big picture we're seeing a game change. And so, I, I, even if I'm, you know, I always, always felt powerful I always you know I always felt like, you know, that I want to be part of something powerful I want to I want to, You know that was always a sentiment that I carried with me and harness that energy throughout my whole life like you know, I want to do something powerful I am going to see some powerful things in my lifetime like this. That's always been with me. So, you know, it's, It's right now is the time if it, you know, if my life doesn't mean anything, you know, then you know like, it's not even, I can't even ask myself that question because my life means something, you know, so that's my driving force is like it's, It's, I have to accomplish this because that's my mission, you know, I can go deeper but you know it's a really spiritual thing like
Pete Cohen 14:50
Go deep if you want to, you know.
Dr. Pooch 14:53
Yeah, it's when you, when you, when you when you have a calling, you know, You, you, you have a mission, and you have to fulfill that mission. And, you know, that's, that's, it's like it's like growing a tree is growing, you know, a planet like you want you. You nurture it and give it you give it everything that it can so we can feed generations, right or the next generation. So that's really what it is I just want to like plant these, these seeds, you know, grow them up to be at least, strong enough in my lifetime so you know, when I'm gone because that's inevitable I am going to you know we're all going to go, but it's, it's, it's, what matters is the work that we leave behind us, you know, so I just want to leave a body of work, you know,
Pete Cohen 15:45
It's fascinating. So, in terms of what why do you think a lot of people struggle to, to identify that within themselves. Do you think that's within most people because that my feeling is that I think somewhere we know that, that there's something here for us to do fulfill to make things better to leave a mark, but we just settle for mediocrity, we just settle for being like everyone else and I think that's where fear, worry, doubt, frustration, anger, resonates stays in that space because we're not evolving. What do you think?
Dr. Pooch 16:18
So I think that there's a conflict and a lot of people right. So, there's a conflict in their original self. And the, the, their current worldly position. Yeah, right. So the original self. That's, that was created in heaven that was perfect and held a certain energy, it was an it had a certain purpose in heaven. Then that person came down into the flesh and had this worldly and is having this worldly experience, and there's that, that that that dichotomy there's that there's that that dual feeling, right, of, of, I was, I was once this inside of me I feel this way within, like, my worldly purposes, this will overrun, or rather my worldly experience is this and these things keep on happening and this, and my life keeps on, you know, telling me to do this but really I want to do. and so everybody's in this conflict, you know, I'm, I'm blessed to not have that, that real like conflict I've always known internally like I've been able to mesh my internal. Well, I still had that conflict, because it has taken me a long time but I've been through, through systems that I've learned and through different practices, different, different understandings of real life, you know, spiritual sciences. I've been able to really understand those things and why, you know, certain psychologies my own psychology is a is a certain way.
Pete Cohen 18:03
Yeah, it's fascinating. You know, I've just written down some of the stuff that you said because you know I'm always, I'm always learning. I think it's the, it's the reality of who you think you are, who you are, versus who you actually are. And I think who we actually are. Is something truly amazing that we can make such a difference while we're here. And if we don't, then I think we're always going to have that battle, the battle inside I think it's just so easy. That's the challenge right because if you're like, if you're around other people that are like you, I mean let's be honest right you know, People want to be a part of something. And when I think of LA. You know one of the first things I think about is, is gangs right I mean, one of the films which obviously is straight out of Compton, because I love music and public enemy and, but there was a film with ice cube is. And what was that film called very famous visit. Yeah, with poohbear, Jr, you know,
Dr. Pooch 19:02
Pete Cohen 19:04
I remember watching that film and you just see that, I mean it happens all over the world right but it can be so strong in certain groups, that if you step away from that, then you're disrespecting who we are. And it's just I suppose it's just so easy to be like that right it's just it's easy and it's rather than to break away and go you know that that's not for me, you know, this is really, how did you find your calling. I mean, where did you find out really mean you did you grew up around that type of culture and, you know, gang culture.
Dr. Pooch 19:37
Yes, I was I was I was blessed like to be. I want to want to dance live in LA, I mean, I was just outside of, You know, like mice. Mice. Mice school bus like early on, would pick us up, and you know it picked up all the, you know, the whole black, you know, neighborhood. So, I was I was I was part I was in the more affluent part of the black neighborhood. But even from the school bus like back in those days, in the 90s like I'm talking about, like, seven years old, I'm in the first grade or you know whatever like, you know, 678 years old. I mean I witnessed, like, almost like, you know, shootings, like murders, You know, stabbing us, it just crazy stuff just from the, from being in the school bus, right, and so then when you, you know you get older you start to hang you start to, you start to hang you know you start you start having friends you start doing things and so I was blessed to have a father that, That that was not part of this culture, and had a family in another place and so he sent this out, you know, and so when I came back. I had lost contact like I tell this story all the time like, you know, my best friend at the time. You know what he was in was in was in jail for murder by the time that I came back. Yeah, no, like, so in that little period of time in my in my most 14 years, the years where I'm where I became who I, who I am, like, 13 1415, right, those years, I was out of LA. You know I was outside of this this but it was it was crazy out here so, you know, gang culture was really bad. I mean I'm talking about from elementary school. So, a lot of these, you know people they want to start banging it like 20 years old 30 Like, if you're not banging it, you know, on a playground, you know, you're not really from this like this is in LA is multi-generational, you know, this is in your family, so my family. I came from a family of immigrants, my mom is from a Hungarian origin, right, She comes from a family of immigrants, he's first generation born in New York, and married my dad, you know who's, you know, straight, you know from West Africa. And so, I didn't come from, from that, la culture where you know I had cousins and this and that, you know like. Now, That was, I was getting that view from my friends so
Pete Cohen 22:14
A lot of the kids that you're trying to, you know you're infiltrating, you know you're influencing impact, chances are their parents have come from those. In many cases, from that time man.
Dr. Pooch 22:26
If you're, if you're in if you're in LA you're black Americans from LA, like it's inevitable that there's, there's some of that in your, you know, in your family like, you know, there's, there's, cousins, especially I'm sorry to Interstate, you know, It has to be because it's it was really tribal you know it's still it's like it's, there's, you know it's turning up like this thing out here is turning up right now, you know, right now, like. So neighborhoods are just, you know. Anyway, you know,
Pete Cohen 23:07
You push people down right you just, there's no question what's been happening right is pushing, pushing, pushing, and that that happens I mean that to me was, you know, obviously, is you know slightly off topic maybe but the whole Black Lives Matter thing which kicked off really was showed me this stuff is, it's there, it hasn't gone away, and it needs to come out right. Because it's that it's easy just to sweep under the carpet, and just like with you. Look, this is a big issue we are going to outlive our children in unless we change and we get children to eat and move properly, because that's what we're designed to do. And that's why, that's why I can't let you do this on your own because I don't think you'll do it on your own. You know I think it's impossible for you to create the impact and the books you've written, they're not, they're not books that just adults should read those books, you know, every, people should read them, you know, that to me I've been, I've been I've seen them but I've got them and they just seem that those old books that, and I think those books will always be fashionable, they won't go out of fashion that type of books that are big a4 Right. And you kind of feel the what's in them, they're fun, they're colorful, they make you think right yeah let me, let me, let me let me show you what I mean, read, read, read, read is a little bit of one of the books.
Dr. Pooch 24:28
So, this is this is the book about bullying. He stood up for himself. Every book starts off with a note to parents, to address the issue and adult language so here I can really talk to the adult like whoever came in here like I'm saying, for example, if, if a check if a child is bullying. Right. It's never appropriate to respond to that child with physical, you know, with like physical punishment, right, because, because the child is just going to, that's, that's obviously the issue most children that are bullied, there's some type of physical punishment and corporal punishment, that's happening at home. Right. So it's like, you know now here's a, here's a chance to talk to the adult, and really be honest and you know I go in, you know, into other things as well. Right, so, so that's, that's the universe starts off with. He gets up, he goes to the you know, it was a norm, it was a normal hot day though the breeze was quite cool. All seemed okay as my stash got ready for school. Right. And he had a wholesome breakfast that mom cooked from scratch. Pancakes with whole flour, he ate the whole batch. She made fresh cucumber juice and some porridge from spouts, he told her how good he felt and that he lost another notch on his belt right here he is like, you know, checking his way, so it within this story of a bully now I'm infusing some health, you know, knowledge like he's, he's actively trying to eat better, He said, It's all, it's, it's, it's all the good foods you eat whole grains, cereals, whole fruits and clean meats. The bus came as usual right on time. How are you, Mr. Dry, Mr. Bus driver, the bus driver said, Fine. Right. And here's starts to believe. He sat next to has vegetable his favorite power across her Maryberry his favorite gal, the Peach was sitting in back, making loud noises, and eating sugary snacks. So here, what I did was, identify that the eating sugary snacks the junk food with the bad behavior. Now, now the bully is not only is he is exhibiting bad behavior but he's also the one eating bad food, although the main character is the one that has the belly poked right he's the he's the fat. Right, but he's the good one. In this coverage. And so, you know, let's say here, Johnny mustache lifted PD peach buzz and PD book back saying, I'm not giving you any of my snacks and besides, you're too fat. Right, so that's, there was the verbal bullying right there, Right. And then, you know, it goes on and on to like physical bullying, the, the appropriate communal responses like the responses of his friends.
Pete Cohen 27:27
If you think about these books right his kids what they love is, they love to be read books or they loved looking at books over and over and over again and that's how we elicit change right he just didn't still, it's very clever, and the characters are great as well.
Dr. Pooch 27:46
One thing 111 of my favorite parts in this book so after every book is finished, right. There's affirmations, which of course is a social, emotional, this is a love issue. Right, so is the self-esteem issue, sorry so that's important there, here is this is being utilized as schools right now, where at least it was, It's an anti-bully contract, right. So, a teacher, can, can, can have the same class and hold every student accountable and say look you, you, you signed a contract, right, little psychological tool, which actually it works. Yeah, and then there's a recipe right which I added at the end of every book to stay involved the whole family, you know, more activities and little cubby sections.
Pete Cohen 28:35
It was very very clever. So you know with all of these books right. Tell me what your vision is what do you see happening where do you want to see these books?
Dr. Pooch 28:46
I want to see these books in every child's hands, black, white, everything, like every everybody. One is important, right, for, for, let's say, for, for white children to read these books, not only because they deal with health but because they have characters of color which is, you know it's shifting and it's important for you know for children to interface with the world as it is. I want to see this. I want black and brown kids to use these books, so they can see themselves and healthier versions of themselves and have that healthy conversation with themselves and their families. You know, I want, I want to see these books used like in phase one, like the, just the public moms and you know buying in book shops or buying directly from me doing that phase two. I want them to be in schools. This could either be a supplemental health curriculum, where each school has a health coach, that's assigned to that particular school and is now, assisting the whole staff to think in a holistic way because there's dike school is where we get our, you know chaos from like that's you know, so that has to be re redesigned and re-engineered you know So, utilizing that as supplementary, and then being part of a mandatory curriculum now this this curriculum could be. These books are for, you know K through third, but it can well be developed until 12th grade like we can go into the, you know, deeper science of, you know, foods and nutrition and, you know, the deeper like actual food science, it can just go, you know, you know, we talked about epigenetics and you know all of this other stuff like, everything can be added on to this curriculum so I think this. These holistic health concepts are so important the 12 that is really so important that every child. Now, in the world needs to have conversation part of their education needs to be around these concepts. So that's like that's the goal, you know, like it's lofty it's, it's crazy, it's wishful thinking but
Pete Cohen 31:27
Dr. Pooch 31:29
It's doable it's doable like this is exactly what we need. This is what the world needs, if, if, if you, if you can name three superfoods off the top of your head, your health, illiterate, if you, if you can't identify, you know, the major refined sugars right in reading an agreement any ingredient label is something like that, right, if, if you're not eating whole foods, as a part like every day like if you don't know, anti-inflammatory foods off the top of your head like, it's, I want this to be so, so natural that, you know, most doctors don't know this stuff, ask them to your average doctor what their favorite superfood is they don't know, like that's a crisis like that's insanity. That's insanity, you know, if a doctor can recommend you the most anti-inflammatory food or anti-inflammatory diet, like we're dealing with 90% of these diseases are inflammatory diseases like chronically, you know, chronic inflammation. So it's like, I want to get back to the basics, you know, like all of this be words for nothing like I'm bringing it down to a kid's level so we can have a conversation.
Pete Cohen 32:51
So tell me what help do you need right now.
Dr. Pooch 32:55
Right now, I finances, financing, so I can print. I can get at least two runs of the book that is a minimum run of like 1000 a book so I would like to print 24,000 Just to be ready for the push because I know that this push is going to be big. With, with 24,000 Selling the set, you know, a minimum of anywhere I don't need to get into that, but I believe that, that, that, you know 100k Would, would secure, me being able to provide the infrastructure for a team, so I can outsource how I can get more content so I can run marketing are already have persons that I'm that I'm talking to and that we discussed things. However, things are changing because of this clubhouse. Right now, in, in the blink of an eye and just one conversation like I just literally because of your room had a conversation with somebody that may be assisting in social media so everything is kind of changing. I'm looking into, I'm seeing there's a real need to have a publisher, or a co-publisher, on, on another, in another side of the world you know that can really supply the demand out there and knows you know the distribution channels on that side of the world. So if there's, there's, there's a lot that I need right now. But, but just getting this to the, to the right people, and I think that's that's the first step, you know, that's the first step,
Pete Cohen 34:36
But the thing is I can really see way, where this is going in my mind as you describe it and see the impact. And I think if I can see other people can see it and the more people that see it I think the more people will want to pour into you and help you and support you because ultimately I think we all want to make a difference. What's the best way for people to contact you.
Dr. Pooch 34:57
drpooch.com, you can go to my website, drpooch.com. Email me directly at firstname.lastname@example.org. Just google me, you know, I've been really trying to make sure that all of my Google links work and easily find my Youtube channel, Instagram social media, everything is Dr_Pooch.
Pete Cohen 35:23
Okay cool, Listen, thank you so much for your time, you know, let's, let's keep working on this, because there's a lot of work to be done but I think the more you bring people together, the easier this whole thing is going to be right.
Dr. Pooch 35:35
Yeah, yeah, I love you man.
Pete Cohen 35:37
I love you too, man I'm there, I am there in any I've already contacted someone when we had a little, little issue with connection I contacted a friend of mine, I'm going to claim that Joe dishonor. Because he's automatic kids, man. You know, you don't ask you don't get. So I really really appreciate you and I look forward to continuing to be a part of your journey. And being in your team and consider me and your team.
Dr. Pooch 36:04
Thank you. Thank you, well that's that's, come on, we were whether we're the dream team were the dream team we are most important, like straight up superheroes. That's it,
Pete Cohen 36:14
Thank you so much, I really appreciate you and look after yourself.
Dr. Pooch 36:19
Thank you, you too.