'End of Illness': Life-Changing Story

A CT scan for an assignment might have saved "Nightline" anchor Bill Weir's life
0:26 | 01/18/12

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Transcript for 'End of Illness': Life-Changing Story
This story was not supposed to be about me that was supposed to be about a man called a rock star of science. And his belief that modern medicine is completely backwards. Instead of America spending billions on the sick he says the system should keep us from getting sick. In the first place and to demonstrate his theory asks me to undergo a series of cutting edge tax. I said. I'm healthy you probably won't -- and we sure why not with no clue that our series the end of illness. Would actually save my life. Earth. They'll have a seat. The moment of truth but as Saturday -- that is part of you you know what's funny and I actually thought this is gonna be just another assignment until -- about. -- you know and the unfortunate truth is you do have some heart disease now. Converged on him and Obama actually flashy -- image you might see it spreading ashes of the same amount -- -- -- my dad. Second. Do I deserve this. -- for my first four decades security secret arrogant hunch. That was -- for. Terror exercise but I can't remember my last check up on -- have a -- and -- like salad. But my food pyramid has built mostly with racks of ribs and six pack for second I thought wait maybe he's wrong -- that they don't really know preventive strategies. But who my kid this is doctor David -- which patients -- range from Lance Armstrong to Ted Kennedy. He's a guy kept Steve Jobs -- years beyond what anyone thought was possible. Any just wrote the most anticipated medical book that you hear them. In the end of illness and Agassi makes the staggering admission that man may never understand cancer. Much less -- Worst diseases. But by using the science we already -- and vast oceans of data. He thinks we can eventually prevent the disease altogether. But it can't happen until American bone heads like this -- fully understand. How they are killing themselves. When we locked in that one of your most important arteries in the heart -- LED the big. -- going into the heart there is one lesion in there where -- house vacation. These lesions in significant arteries in the heart -- heart attacks in the near term. So we all hear read in the Paper about the 45 year old who went jogging in died of a heart attack. These are the things we worry about especially early individuals so this is my fondness for -- coming back on May what is -- YA is accounts -- in general I would say. -- -- most per dollar is your genetics you can blame your parents. He's a UN inherited predisposition to -- carotid disease. How does he know this well doctor Vegas also has a company called -- a gen -- which tests human DNA markers of likely disease. A couple weeks ago -- mailed instructions on how to spit into a tube and eight simple steps. Of course doesn't -- -- -- which is. -- -- -- dilemma which is better knowledge is power acres -- But it -- ignorance is death. So we must gather as much data about ourselves as is medically possible. He had me get a bit bit tracker to measure how much I move and how well I sleep he did a bunch of blood -- And -- sent me through the latest CT scanner. To take pictures of every nook and cranny and here's the crazy part the rest of me -- is a damn horse. So this is your liver you live look absolutely perfect relay. I'm a bit surprised -- kids -- ran well I'm not that little worried by your surprise but. From those guns and we like -- beer and Ireland as well as the sound of previous it's like -- -- I think it usually. So -- much cheaper blood test does show high cholesterol. It was this thirteen hundred dollar -- ride that took the picture. It probably saved my life. How accessible is this to the average person on a shallow something like that technology -- -- in the hundreds of dollars to get done. But -- may or may not be covered by separate health plans. But -- -- real resistance to scans like this becoming part of your routine check up some worry the burst of radiation. Raise your risk of cancer and -- of the scan shows something that looked scary but really isn't. There was -- idea that well what we shouldn't put these in malls and have everybody go through on because in the end up chasing spending more on things that may not ultimately be worth it. What are your thoughts on that there are false positives or false negatives of any technology. To me though this is an art it matter who does it where it's done in lessened dramatically the chance of false positives and false -- -- some pretty good to us. The same argument is often made about DNA test. Remember that -- So we're gonna talk about your DNA. Doctor Vegas found some amazing things in there if you look at alzheimer's disease which you know were all worried about the national average -- 9% here 5%. Similarly if that's a relief but it's still not zero what do you say to somebody says I don't want to -- -- when -- get alzheimer's if there's enough that I can do. But you have to test. But again I want to know. Being -- charger destinies he health care. So the way I like communities here in front of two Chinese restaurants you look at the ingredient -- they're exactly the same. -- taste the food they're different such an -- to your ingredients. You now have the potential to change the recipe you know. So how we change motorists are being secure -- Well the advice is amazingly simple and it could just save your life. So the key to your diet is your HDL or good cholesterol is elevated only keep that I don't want you -- low fat diet and when you want to effect. Olive oil canola oil heart healthy eggs cold water fish fantastic. I want you continue your exercise residents can do it regularly. To do something every day -- focusing your core would focus on robotics. -- to develop a regular schedule key. So I don't want you having lunch today afternoon and tomorrow at 3 o'clock stop the vitamins. But you're not vitamin deficient. So you look at all the large studies -- -- vitamins most of them have caused problems rather than benefit. So real food. Regular schedule. Live healthy that's the -- We make it sound so simple. Why it's going to be simple and fun that. To get this. Actually -- the treadmill out of the back -- -- garage. And walk five miles while writing this peace and for the first time in my life instead of a lot worse I grilled salmon during the packers'. I'm pretty sure that is why they lost but hey maybe if I eat enough I can buy another fifty years of catching fish. With a certain girl I know. It's sort -- shot.

This transcript has been automatically generated and may not be 100% accurate.

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