CNN CNN


 

Return to Transcripts main page

CNN NEWSROOM

North Korea Puts Two Missiles Loaded on Launches on Its East Coast; Morning-After Pill for Teens Under 16?; Gluten: Friend or Foe?; Interview with Author Mary Roach; NBA Player Wants To Be a Face for M.S.

Aired April 6, 2013 - 16:00   ET

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.


(MUSIC PLAYING)

FREDRICKA WHITFIELD, CNN ANCHOR: Hello, everyone and welcome to the CNN NEWSROOM. I'm Fredricka Whitfield. A look at our top stories right now.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

WHITFIELD (voice-over): North Korea may already have two missiles loaded on launchers on its East Coast, and now it's warning all foreign diplomats it can't protect them if conflict erupts. We'll go to South Korea for reaction to the latest threats in a moment.

Hillary Clinton is back in the spotlight. New public appearances this weekend, a book deal, are stoking more speculation about a White House run in 2016. We'll do a reality check with our political editor in just a minute.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

WHITFIELD: Plus, my revealing conversation with entertainment icon Rita Moreno, as she's out with a memoir.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

WHITFIELD (voice-over): And in it she reveals why her lover, Marlon Brando, convinced her to go into therapy.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

WHITFIELD: All right. Our top story: North Korea is giving foreign diplomats an ominous warning. It can't guarantee their safety if a war breaks out, and it's offered to help evacuate them.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

WHITFIELD (voice-over): At the same time, a U.S. official says North Korea has two missiles poised to launch, but life there may not be changing too much just yet. Jim Clancy is in South Korea.

JIM CLANCY, CNN CORRESPONDENT: Fredricka, as we've been saying now for weeks, South Koreans seem to be taking all the fiery rhetoric here on the peninsula in stride.

Well, it seems that North Koreans may be doing the same.

CLANCY (voice-over): It's not often that we hear from the North Koreans, but a tour operator who just returned from a visit to Pyongyang was asked does she see any difference inside the North Korean capital?

AMANDA CARR, KORYO TOURS: I didn't feel any difference towards us and people smiling, waving, saying hello as usual in English, and kids coming up and rollerblading in (inaudible) Square and coming up and saying hello. So there was no difference in that respect.

CLANCY (voice-over): Now Amanda Carr said that they visited bowling alleys, bars and public parks, and while people were aware of the rhetoric, they support the government, number one.

And soldiers are there on the streets. But they're planting trees. This is, after all, spring planting season.

What concerns many Koreans, at least here in the South, is not the threat of one side or the other starting an all-out offensive.

JOHN DELURY, YONSEI UNIVERSITY, SEOUL: There's another danger right now, which is in the fog of war, especially at sea, where you've got North Koreans and South Koreans lapping right up against another, a match is lit that sparks a bonfire that actually no one wanted, not even the North Koreans.

CLANCY (voice-over): Now Fredricka, South Koreans are very aware that the North has moved two missiles to the eastern side of the peninsula for suspected test firing. That could come at the middle of the month to celebrate Kim Il-sung's birthday, the founding father and leader of North Korea.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

CLANCY: Now at the same time, the U.S. and South Korean navies have moved sophisticated radar vessels, spy ships, if you will, into position. They want to learn as much as possible about this largely unknown and untested missile. They also want to know what risks it may pose.

Fredricka?

WHITFIELD: All right. Thanks so much, Jim Clancy.

In Afghanistan, three U.S. service members and two civilians are dead following an attack on a military convoy.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

WHITFIELD (voice-over): It happened in Zabul province in the southern part of the country. Another American service member was also killed in a separate attack. The attacks came just hours after the Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff arrived in the country. He's meeting with coalition and Afghan leaders to discuss the transition in Afghanistan.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

WHITFIELD: In Kaufman County, Texas, police say they have arrested a man accused of threatening a deputy district attorney. This follows the funeral for District Attorney Mike McClelland and his wife.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

WHITFIELD (voice-over): Police and bomb-sniffing dogs searched the church yesterday before the funeral following a bomb threat. On Thursday night, McClelland and his wife, Cynthia, were shot dead in their home last weekend.

And Hillary Clinton is back in the spotlight. She returned to public appearances this week and is also working on a new book.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

WHITFIELD: As CNN political editor Paul Steinhauser says, that keeps fueling speculation about a run for the White House.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

PAUL STEINHAUSER, CNN POLITICAL EDITOR: Hey, Fred.

After two months of laying low, Hillary Clinton's back in front of cameras. From an appearance Tuesday night here in the nation's capital that honored women --

HILLARY CLINTON, FORMER SECRETARY OF STATE: This is such a wonderful occasion every year.

STEINHAUSER (voice-over): -- to a speech yesterday at a women's event in New York City --

CLINTON: When women participate in the politics of their nations, they can make a difference.

STEINHAUSER (voice-over): The former secretary of state, senator and first lady is back in the political spotlight, two months after stepping down as America's top diplomat.

CLINTON: Hi, guys.

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: How are you?

CLINTON: Hey, I'm great.

STEINHAUSER (voice-over): She's got three more speeches scheduled the next couple of months, and we learned this week that her new book will publish next year. All that's fueling speculation that Clinton, who came so close to winning the Democratic presidential nomination in 2008, will make another bid for the White House in 2016.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Hillary! Hillary! Hillary!

STEINHAUSER (voice-over): You know, there's already a growing super PAC trying to convince her to become a candidate again. But a top Clinton adviser says hold on.

PHILIPPE REINES, CLINTON SPOKESMAN: I think people aren't just getting ahead of themselves, they're getting ahead of her. It really -- 60 days has been the blink of an eye. We're talking about an election that's 1,300 days away.

STEINHAUSER: He may think it's too early to be talking about the next presidential contest --

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

STEINHAUSER (voice-over): -- but Vice President Joe Biden, who may also have designs on the White House, he speaks to the South Carolina Democratic Party next month.

You know, South Carolina is a crucial early primary state.

And some Republicans who may also run in 2016, such as Senator Rand Paul and former Senator Rick Santorum, well, they'll be making trips the next two months to Iowa and New Hampshire, which kick off the caucus and primary calendar.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

STEINHAUSER: It seems we can't ignore 2016 talk. Fred?

WHITFIELD: All right. Thanks so much, Paul Steinhauser.

All right. A scholar watching North Korea closely says the country is not suicidal.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

WHITFIELD (voice-over): But with two missiles ready to go and threats flowing, the question is, what's the end goal?

(MUSIC PLAYING)

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(MUSIC PLAYING)

WHITFIELD: North Korea is rattling off threats and putting the international community on edge. Its latest move, putting two missiles onto launchers.

So what's next? Let's bring in Balbina Hwang, a visiting professor at Georgetown and a former State Department official. Good to see you.

And we're also joined by Sung-Yoon Lee, a professor at Tufts University. Professor, good to see you as well. So Professor Lee, you first. You know, you wrote an opinion piece for CNN, saying North Korea is not suicidal. You say the goal is not to start a war. So what do you suppose their goal is?

SUNG-YOON LEE, THE FLETCHER SCHOOL, TUFTS UNIVERSITY: In every discussion of North Korea, you have to consider the basic internal dynamic in the Korean Peninsula. You have a two-state formulation, a fancy of way of saying two states, two Korean states that are vying for competing against each other for pan-Korean legitimacy.

North Korea faces an existential threat in the sheer existence of South Korea, a far more attractive, successful, freer, richer country to which a lot of your own people have already and want to continue to go over.

So North Korea basically gets by on blackmail, extortion and the sales of illicit activities. If North Korea were not able to retain that capability to be a political factor in international politics by causing problems for the world's greatest powers, why would they go on giving to North Korea?

And as a corollary, why would North Korea give that capability up, primarily achieved by the relentless pursuit of nuclear long-range missile capabilities?

North Korea calculates it can do it again: cause problems, back down and then get the world's greatest powers to return to talks with (inaudible).

(CROSSTALK)

WHITFIELD: So really, in other words, North Korea just wants to make noise. They just want to matter. So bluffing is worthy.

LEE: That's right. It's a fundamental aspect to all-regime preservation. If they were docile or a normal peaceful country, they would be relegated to the status, the economic political status that they are, a small country, an impoverished country of 23 million, presided over by a bizarre, cruel dictatorship.

And no one in the world would accord North Korea the kind of respect that we do.

WHITFIELD: So Professor Hwang, do you think that North Korea is just bluffing and it just wants to make noise, it just wants to be noticed and it really doesn't mean to follow through on any of these threats?

BALBINA HWANG, FORMER OFFICIAL, U.S. STATE DEPARTMENT: Well, yes and no. While I do agree that they are trying to elevate the level of risk and tension, I think we have to be careful because we have the tendency to dismiss North Korean actions as being just bluster and show.

And they're -- very often the metaphor used is they are just children looking to get attention. I think we have to treat it more seriously than this.

Yes, they -- they -- what Professor Lee said is true. This is precisely how North Korea does elevate its status in the region. But these threats are also very serious.

WHITFIELD: So what do you mean, treat it more seriously? The U.S. is already moving yet another warship into the area. The U.S. has also talked about more interceptors that we would -- that would be put in place as a result of the kinds of threats coming from North Korea.

What more should be done to show that -- well, for the U.S. to show that it is taking North Korea seriously or it is paying attention?

HWANG: Well, in terms of policy, I actually believe that what the United States and South Korea are doing right now is exactly right. The difficulty --

(CROSSTALK)

WHITFIELD: The practice exercises?

HWANG: Well, yes, which are annual exercises, in any case.

WHITFIELD: Annual, yes.

HWANG: But the point is that it's important to strike a very delicate balance between a show of irrefutable deterrence and defense, but at the same time, not risk escalating this to a level that North Korea feels threatened so that it will actually strike out.

What I meant by taking it seriously is that I think we ought to stop dismissing the North Korean leadership. You hear very often that, you know, the young, untested leader -- yes, he's young, but that really is irrelevant.

And when we say untested, in the 15 months he's been in power, he has managed to test yet another nuclear weapon, shoot off even more missiles, which are actually successful. And so I think we have to take it seriously in that regard.

WHITFIELD: He has set a stage.

Professor Balbina Hwang and Professor Sung-Yoon Lee, thanks so both of you for joining us. We appreciate it. We know this is just really the beginning of much more dialogue to come. Thank you.

All right. She is an icon of the screen and stage. And she is revealing all. My candid conversation with Oscar winner Rita Moreno: the surprising advice she would have given her teenage self.

RITA MORENO, OSCAR, GRAMMY, EMMY AND TONY WINNER: I would have said to Rosita Delores Alverio, don't go to Hollywood.

(MUSIC PLAYING) (COMMERCIAL BREAK)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE: This is CNN breaking news.

WHITFIELD: And this breaking news, very sad news to bring to you. It's being reported that Matthew Warren, the 27-year-old son of Pastor Rick Warren of the Saddleback Valley Community Church, committed suicide last night.

In a statement coming from the family, it made the point that Matthew, 27, also suffered from mental illness resulting in deep depression and suicidal thoughts. That statement coming from the family. Our deepest sympathies going out to the Warren family. Of course, we'll get more information, bring that to you as soon as we have it.

All right. Only 11 entertainers have won an Oscar, a Grammy, an Emmy and a Tony. And it was an honor for me to speak to one of them.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

WHITFIELD (voice-over): Rita Moreno is a legendary performer who has just written a memoir. She not only dishes on the love affairs that she had with some Hollywood legends, but she also delves into her childhood as a Puerto Rican immigrant in the Bronx.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

WHITFIELD: Ms. Moreno told me what it was like to endure slurs and hatred and how that shaped her life very early on.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

MORENO: I found out very quickly when I came to this country, and it was New York, I was about 5 years old that I was a spic, according to the kids on the block, and a garlic mouth and a pierced ear, all the words you hear in "West Side Story," by the way.

And even though at the time I didn't even speak English, the way in which those words were spit out at me, even as a very little girl, I knew something was wrong with me. And when I began to understand the words, it was even worse.

And, you know, if you're young enough and you are told often enough that you have no value, you believe it. Children are very tender and very vulnerable and very believing. They'll believe anything you tell them. And I carried that with me for far too many years.

It's the thing that sent me into psychotherapy many, many years later, when I was finding that I was really miserable in my life, that I didn't like myself very much.

And my friend, Marlon Brando, who was then my lover, said -- this man who was seriously disturbed, said to me, "You need to see a therapist." (LAUGHTER)

MORENO: I love the irony of that. He was right, of course.

I'm a very stubborn person. I hang on to my neurosis like nobody's business.

So -- but I know a lot of people like that. It's more comfortable, even though it's scary.

WHITFIELD: And because it's very comfortable for most people to kind of live with a facade, there can be the person that everyone thinks they know. And then there is, of course, the person. And sometimes it takes a lot more courage -- most times it takes a lot more courage to reveal exactly who you are and what you are thinking and feeling, whether it be, you know, revealing your strengths or your weaknesses, especially.

MORENO: You are so smart and you are so right.

And, you know, what really was shocking to me, because the book covers something that you rarely get to see anymore, it covers the early Hollywood that no longer exists and the bias and the prejudice that I lived with for years and years and years in Hollywood when I was a young woman.

That was a shock and it was sad, because I really thought when I went to MGM under contract at 17 that I was going to be a star. I could be like Lana Turner or Elizabeth Taylor. And then it turned out I could only play roles that required accents.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP, "WEST SIDE STORY")

"ANITA": I'll get a terrace apartment

"BERNARDO": Better get rid of your accent

"ANITA": Life can be bright in America

MORENO: And that begat something kind of -- rather amusing, in a way, because whether I played a Polynesian girl -- I was always the house ethnic --

(END VIDEO CLIP, "WEST SIDE STORY")

MORENO: -- whether I played a Polynesian girl, an Arabian girl, an East Indian girl, I always had the same accent.

(CROSSTALK)

WHITFIELD: Did it always bother you? Did it always bother you? Was there a point where you said, OK, I'm going to do this? I accept it. But then you write, it became very demeaning. How did you turn that around?

(CROSSTALK) MORENO: It didn't become demeaning. It always was demeaning.

But somewhere inside of me, I always felt there was this stubborn streak that said, you are talented, even when I was a little girl, you have talent. Somehow if I persevere, somehow, some way, someone will see that in me and give me a break.

And it happened in "West Side Story." and of course "The King and I."

But "The King and I," yet again, I was talking like this, you know? And a beautiful role, fantastic movie, but there I was, doing the same thing, only with more beautiful costumes.

WHITFIELD: So if you had an opportunity to kind of reach back to your teenage years, your early part of your career and you would be able to advise yourself, given your life path, your odyssey, what would you have advised that young girl about to embark on a life in entertainment?

MORENO: I would have said to Rosita Delores Alverio, don't go to Hollywood. Go to the theatre, where people were still allowed to play different kinds of roles.

But my thinking, my -- what's the word for that -- my set, my take was that in order to be a famous star, you had to go to Hollywood.

It never occurred to me -- I had never done theatre till I was -- oh, my gosh, much, much older.

So Hollywood was the answer for me. It wasn't the best answer.

In the meantime, however, it made me very strong. And in the meantime, I met someone like Marlon Brando, who ultimately did me one of the greatest favors he ever did any woman, which was to say you need help.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

WHITFIELD: Wow. Isn't that hard to hear, that she thinks that she shouldn't have gone to Hollywood? That would be her advice. Well, anyway, there's much more with Rita Moreno, tomorrow, 5 o'clock Eastern as she opens up about her relationship with Marlon Brando, why she says he was like a drug and an obsession.

And she also talks about her love affair with Elvis and why she found him dull -- her words, not mine.

(LAUGHTER)

WHITFIELD: Stay with us.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

WHITFIELD: All right. Justin Bieber received a pet monkey for his 19th birthday, and the monkey has landed. The Biebs, back in the headlines after it got taken away in Germany. CNN's Fred Pleitgen has more on how much this just might cost the pop star.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

FREDERIK PLEITGEN, CNN CORRESPONDENT (voice-over): This is the moment we meet Mally, the baby capuchin monkey brought to Germany by Justin Bieber but confiscated by authorities.

It's now quarantined at this animal shelter in Munich. Mally seems a little shy when my giant fingers stroke his tiny head. But those taking care of him say he's doing just fine.

KARL HEINZ JOACHIM, MUNICH ANIMAL SHELTER: (speaking German).

PLEITGEN (voice-over): "He doesn't seem to stress at all," the shelter's head tells me, "but he's very young, about 14 weeks. And if Justin Bieber got him at the beginning of March, the animal was only about 9 weeks old then. Here in Germany, that would not be allowed."

The monkey was allegedly a gift for Bieber's 19th birthday. And he took the animal along when he went on tour in Germany. But when his plane landed in Munich, customs officials seized the primate, saying Bieber didn't provide proper documentation to bring it into the country.

Now, Mally spends his days in this room with a routine of feeding, playing and lots of cuddles from the staff.

PLEITGEN: Justin Bieber faces a fine of around $70,000 for bringing Mally to Germany without proper documentation. And if he doesn't provide the necessary documents within about four weeks, authorities here could try to find a new home for the monkey.

PLEITGEN (voice-over): Bieber's camp refused to comment on the issue, but it comes at a tough time for the superstar. He was recently booed for arriving late to a concert in London and got into an altercation with a photographer and, in a separate incident, allegedly with one of his neighbors.

The head of the animal shelter says Bieber's representatives have been in touch trying to get the necessary paperwork.

"Personally, I think, the best thing Justin Bieber could do for himself and for the monkey is to say, all right, it was not smart of my friends to give me the animal and I just don't have the time for it. Now, I want to do something good for the animal and get it to a good institution where it can live with other monkeys," the head says.

But for now, Mally remains in quarantine, clinging to the teddy bear the shelter says was given to him by Justin Bieber.

Fred Pleitgen, CNN, Munich, Germany.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

WHITFIELD: All right. Good luck to the monkey there.

All right. That's going to do it for me. From Fredricka Whitfield.

Stay with us for SANJAY GUPTA, M.D.

DR. SANJAY GUPTA, HOST: Hello, and thanks for joining us.

Could everyone benefit from going gluten-free? We've got some answers ahead.

Also, the Final Four. You know, we all cringed when Louisville's Kevin Ware went down on the court. I'm going to show you exactly what surgeons did to fix his leg.

Plus, one thing you can start today that will lower your kids' risk of future heart disease.

But, first, on Friday, a federal judge ruled the so-called "morning-after" pill, that Plan B, can be sold over the counter to anyone at any age. Previously, it was description only, if you were under 17.

Now, Plan B is called emergency contraception and the CDC says that one in nine women age 15 to 44 have used it.

So, joining me to talk more about this is my friend and colleague Elizabeth Cohen.

You've been following this story for some time. And the news is sort of interesting because the judge said there was no real reason that it shouldn't be sold over the counter.

What are you hearing from your doctor sources?

ELIZABETH COHEN, CNN SENIOR MEDICAL CORRESPONDENT: Right. The judge called it capricious, and I think other doctors, I think doctors would agree.

What he basically said was, look, the FDA is charged with deciding whether a drug is safe and effective. And if it's safe and effective for 17 and older, it's also safe and effective for 17 and younger. He said the medical data is clear, 15, 25, 35, it works the same in a woman's body. It's safe and effective no matter what age.

Therefore, his reasoning was, it should be available over the counter to anyone at any age.

GUPTA: But there are things that are safe and effective that still require a prescription.

COHEN: Right. That's true. But he's saying if you're not going to require a prescription for 17 and older, right, why are you requiring a prescription for younger than that? And the Obama administration said because they were worried the younger girls wouldn't really understand how to take it. GUPTA: We'll talk more about the impact on this. But, Elizabeth, I want to introduce you to a woman named Brooke Macke. She's joining us from New York.

Brooke, thanks for joining us.

You've obviously been following this story, I'm sure, because this is so personally relevant to you. You told us when you were a young teenager you needed Plan B, but couldn't get it. Can you explain what was going on?

BROOKE ELIAZAR-MACKE, COULDN'T ACCESS PLAN B AS A TEENAGER: Sure. Although I would like to say that I've been following the events in this case because I'm part of a group called National Women's Liberation, that's been fighting for 10 years to get the morning-after pill over the counter.

I am personally impacted because as a teenager, I did need the morning-after pill. I was someone who had unprotected sex. I wasn't able to ask my mom because I personally couldn't go to my parent and say that I need to get the morning-after pill.

For most teenagers, I would think for all teenagers, that the only way to get access to a doctor, to get access to a prescription, is to go with your parent and access their health insurance. And so, rather than take -- rather than go to my mom and ask to go to the doctor, because I had just had sex, I took all of her birth control pills and used them as a morning-after pill.

Although as an adult, I also need the morning-after pill and still faced the requirement of having to show an ID, find a pharmacy that's open, and a pharmacist who will give it to me.

GUPTA: Yes, these are tough conversations. And I -- Elizabeth and I are going to talk about it in a second. I have three daughters and she has four daughters. We think about this a lot.

And I know you advocate, Brooke, for the plan b to be available with no limitations. But what do you think now that a little bit of time has passed, the parents' point of view is in all of this?

ELIAZAR-MACKE: Restricting people who can be pregnant, that that line of a woman or a young girl who doesn't have control over her body, who can't make a very basic decision on whether or not she will have a child, that that is something that each woman, each girl should be able to decide on her own.

GUPTA: Elizabeth, what are the health concerns? So we're talking about any woman of childbearing age. We're talking potentially pretty young girls here. You know, are there any particular health concerns?

COHEN: There are no particular health concerns for young girls versus older girls. There aren't very many side effects to these pills. It's usually something like a headache or dizziness or nausea. Not major side effects. You're taking this usually within 24 hours of having sex.

So, it's not like when you think about an abortion many months later. It's very different.

GUPTA: And what -- I mean, obviously the critics say this is an abortion pill. You've heard that terminology thrown around. How does it work in the body?

COHEN: It works mainly by telling the ovary, hey, don't release an egg, which is sort of how a birth control pill work, because this is basically a high powered birth control pill. So, that's mainly how it works. It can also keep egg and sperm away from each other.

It can also in some instances keep a fertilized egg from implanting into a woman's uterine wall. And that's the one that people get upset about. Some people consider that abortion. You've got this fertilized egg, and the drug says, hey, don't implant. So, people consider that an abortion.

GUPTA: Because the egg has already been fertilized at that point.

COHEN: Correct, right.

GUPTA: An impossible question -- and I know you're probably think about his, because you're a thoughtful person and you're a parent and I have three daughters myself. What do you think about -- I was talking to Brooke about the parental notification. Jus the psychological impact of having the child be talking to the parents about this. It's an uncomfortable conversation. I don't want to have it with my daughters.

COHEN: Right.

GUPTA: But what do you think?

COHEN: I mean, I talk to my teenage girls -- two of my girls are teenagers -- about sex. You know, I told them I want you to come to me and your father and talk to us. I think that's the conversation you need to have.

Even if my daughter, God forbid, were to have to go out and take this drug at the age of 15, the drug itself wouldn't really bother me. I don't think it's going to hurt her. But the fact that she needed it, that's what would bother me.

I mean, I think the conversation we should be having is how do we keep 15-year-olds from having sex in the first place.

GUPTA: Yes, I mean, having the conversation ahead of time. We tend to these things in the throes of something.

COHEN: Right.

GUPTA: Elizabeth, thanks.

COHEN: OK, thank you. Thank you.

GUPTA: I think about this quite a bit. So, thank you.

(MUSIC)

GUPTA: You might have heard this. A type of food that's getting a bad rap from a lot of people is gluten. But is a gluten-free diet really a cure-all for many of your ailments or is this just a fad?

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

GUPTA (voice-over): Gwyneth Paltrow, Miley Cyrus, they've gone gluten-free. Even Oprah tried giving up gluten for a cleansing diet. Gluten is a protein that's found in wheat and other grains, in foods like pasta and bread.

NARRATOR: If you are gluten intolerant, you end up spending half of your dinner looking for gluten-free items on the menu.

GUPTA: Gluten-free foods and diet books, they are now part of a $6 billion industry. But is the fuss worth it? Dr. Larry Sperling wanted to know.

DR. LARRY SPERLING, DIR., EMORY HEALTHCARE CTR. FOR HEART DISEASE PREVENTION: To my knowledge, unless you have true gluten sensitivity, there's nothing magical about a gluten-free diet.

GUPTA: One point to make clear, gluten-free is essential for people with celiac disease. Their body simply can't digest gluten. And even a microscopic amount like eating food that was prepared with the same utensils that touched a food with gluten can cause real problems.

SPERLING: Celiac disease is a disease of inflammation of the intestines. And so, it can produce intestine-like symptoms, upset stomach, diarrhea.

GUPTA: Long-term, it can also lead to osteoporosis and cancer. It can be identified through a blood test, but not so with gluten sensitivity.

And here's where it gets complicated. Some doctors say in people who are just sensitive, gluten can trigger headaches, auto immune symptoms like eczema and a host of other chronic problems.

A handful of study show about 6 percent of the population may have this sensitivity. But some doctors, like Dr. Agatston, suspect it may be much more common.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

GUPTA: Joining me now, Dr. Arthur Agatston. He's a renowned cardiologist. He's inventor of the South Beach diet. He got a new book out, called "The South Beach Diet Gluten Solution."

Thanks for joining us. You're one of my favorite guests. You've helped me so much just with my own health and I really, really appreciate that.

This particular book, you say gluten -- the thing about gluten- free diets may be a trend, but there's something to it as well for most people.

DR. ARTHUR AGATSTON, AUTHOR, "THE SOUTH BEACH DIET GLUTEN SOLUTION": Yes, number one, it's real. And people wonder, can it be affecting me? We think it's affecting the majority of women in this country and a lot, a lot of men. So it is the real deal.

GUPTA: You say just try it, basically, I think is what I took away. Try it for a period of time and see how you feel.

AGATSTON: Yes. First, you have to make sure you don't have celiac disease. That's like a nut allergy. If you get a little gluten, you're in trouble. And usually, a bad G.I. symptom is associated with that.

But the majority of people will test negative for celiac disease. They are simple blood test for screening. For gluten sensitivity, there's no test. So, you just have to get off gluten for a while.

GUPTA: So if you're having troubles and they're pretty significant, you probably should get tested and a blood test is pretty accurate?

AGATSTON: Yes. The screening blood test for celiac, because if you have celiac, you have to be very, very strict about gluten. If not, you have to be what we call gluten aware. Everybody will have a different threshold for how much gluten they can tolerate.

It's like lactose intolerance.

GUPTA: Right.

AGATSTON: People can tolerate a little milk in their coffee, but they have an ice cream sundae they're up all night. There's a similar spectrum of gluten problems. And so, our book and our program helps you find where you fall on the spectrum. And a lot of people fall someplace.

GUTPA: When you talk about this, is there a period of time when you know?

Because I imagine there's a lot of people out there who just have some symptoms and they thought, I don't think that's gluten. But now, though, become gluten aware, as you said. How long before they know it's actually problem?

AGATSTON: G.I. problems, things like reflux, energy focus, you'll often know in just a few days. Our program recommends being gluten-free for a month, and fairly strict the first month. It's easy to be gluten-free for a month. It's very hard to be gluten-free your whole life. GUPTA: Right.

AGATSTON: And then once you know it's affecting you, then you can add back whole grains gradually and see what your threshold is.

GUPTA: Find your sweet spot.

Thanks for joining us. It's always interesting and I think it's so actionable, the things that you talk about as well, Dr. Arthur Agatston.

AGATSTON: Great to be back with you.

GUPTA: Good luck with the book.

AGATSTON: Thanks.

GUPTA: And up next, we're exploring to what happens to your food after you gulp it down. That's the name of a new book by best-selling author Mary Roach and she joins us.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

GUPTA: My next guest has been called America's funniest science writer. It's pretty good moniker, Mary Roach. She's written about the curious lives of human cadavers and (INAUDIBLE), about the science of sex, and about the curious science of life of the void, about space exploration.

Her latest book out this week is "Gulp: Adventures on the Elementary Canal".

Did I say -- you know, it's one of those words I always saw written but hard a time, is it elementary or elementary?

MARY ROACH, AUTHOR: Elementary.

GUPTA: We'll go with elementary, not elementary, which will be a totally different book.

ROACH: You can say it however you want?

GUPTA: How did you decide on this topic?

ROACH: OK, I'm going to tell you this. I was talking with a reader who happened to be a gastroenterologist. We were talking about the whole, you know, digestive tract, and it's pretty interesting thing.

And he says -- he goes, think of it. Nobody appreciates their digestive tract. It could be human anus, this is a rim of muscle, the nerve that can discriminate between solid, liquid, and gas and selectively decide what to let go. And it's like -- he goes -- anyway, he was like no one appreciates their parts, Ok? It's pretty miraculous.

GUPTA: So, you appreciate -- maybe no one talked about it.

ROACH: Lonely anus.

GUPTA: Lonely anus.

You said people like what they eat rather than eat what they like. What does that mean?

ROACH: That has to do with the fact that we talk about if someone's a picky eater and trying to change people's eating habits. One of the things you can do is just -- if you get somebody to just eat it a few times, they'll say they like it. There's a study about women in this -- women's college who, they ask them do you like evaporated milk? And only 15 percent said they liked it. They fed it to them 16 times and they asked them, do you like evaporated milk? Now 51 percent said, yes, I do.

So whatever is in front of you, if you eat it enough, you tend to like it. So, if you can get somebody to try something --

GUPTA: I mean, culturally foods are so different as well. So I guess that would explain in part why some foods are so palatable in certain cultures even at a young age versus other cultures.

ROACH: Sure. Whatever -- well, up until the age of about two, you can get kids to try almost anything. There was a psychologist Paul Rizen (ph) who did this wonderful study where he presented babies with a number of very off putting things like a cracker with ketchup, or fish eggs. And one was fake dog doo.

And up through the age of two years, you could get the kids to try pretty much everything. The dog doo, it was 55 percent, it wasn't real, it was made of peanut butter, the smell came from Lindenberger cheese and they made this whole concoction. But the kids were like yes, I'll try that.

GUPTA: You know, this comes up and people always ask me this. I'll get your take on it. But the stomach itself, you have all this digestive acid, hydrochloric acid, why doesn't it digest itself?

ROACH: My understanding is in fact it does, but it also is very good at rebuilding its own lining. So, you essentially have a new lining every three days or so because you're -- yes --

GUPTA: Sloughing off.

ROACH: Yes. Because the acid does do its job even on your own stomach, because you would think you can eat tripe and you eat other stomach and digest it, why don't you digest your own?

GUPTA: Did your diet change while writing this book or afterward?

ROACH: You have fewer -- I'm careful with hot dogs.

GUPTA: I really enjoy you and I enjoy your books very much. I'm honored that you would join us.

ROACH: Oh, thank you so much. A pleasure to be here. Thank you.

GUPTA: "Gulp". Thank you.

And coming up, it is Final Four weekend, one of my favorite weekends. I'm going to show you exactly how surgeons repaired the pretty shocking broken leg of Louisville basketball guard Kevin Ware.

Stay with us.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

GUPTA: We are back with SGMD.

As you probably know, Louisville guard Kevin Ware, he broke his lower right leg in two places this week. His shinbone, in fact, it actually broke through the skin. It was so gruesome -- too gruesome to really show again on television, but you get the idea of what happened. You can see the looks on his teammates' faces and really everyone else nearby.

It was a pretty unusual injury. It appears that he jumped quite significantly horizontally and vertically and he landed in an awkward position.

Let me show you specifically what we're talking about here. Look at the lower bones over here. This is the knee, the ankle.

This is the tibia bone, and the fibula. And both of these bones specifically were broken as a result of that jump.

I'll show you an X-ray now. This is sort of illustrated -- this isn't his X-ray specifically. But keep in mind the picture you just saw and you see the fracture here and another fracture down here. This is the skin and you can see the bone coming through the skin there.

When that happens, there's a big risk of infection as well and one of the keys is you've got to operate, but you've got to do it even more quickly because of that risk of infection.

Let me show you something here. To reset a break like the one you see there, they put in a metal rod. The inside of the bone is more hollow. It has some space in there, so they're able to thread this through the top of bone and reconnect the two pieces. Eventually the hope is that they heal back or fuse back together. This is a pretty rare thing and it's a gruesome injury really, but they do say that Kevin Ware -- this wasn't a career-ender for him, although a season-ender for sure.

Now, from college to the pros. You might think being a professional athlete and also having multiple sclerosis, that those two things would be mutually exclusive. But just last month, Chris Wright, he broke that barrier when he got a call from the Dallas Mavericks of the NBA and he stuck with the team for 10 days.

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

GUPTA (voice-over): With less than three minutes left in the game against the Atlanta Hawks, Dallas Mavericks point guard, Chris Wright, is in the game. Playing in the NBA has been his lifelong dream. But it almost didn't come true.

CHRIS WRIGHT, MAVERICKS POINT GUARD: While I was shooting, my whole right leg went numb, right foot went numb. Basically it went all the way up to the right side of my body.

GUPTA: Last year, Wright was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis, M.S., a disease that damages the protective covering of nerve cells in the brain and spinal cord. It's a disease he had never heard of.

WRIGHT: I didn't know what it was. I was just remaining positive about it. Once I found out, I still have to remain positive. I'm like, OK. You know, I just have to do what I have to do to maintain my life.

GUPTA: Doctors told Wright he would never play basketball again. But he responded well to treatment and less than three months after his diagnosis, Wright was back on the court. He made history when he signed a 10-day contract with the Dallas Mavericks becoming the first person with M.S. to play in the NBA.

While it may have only been a short stint, Wright believes this won't be the last time he'll play in the NBA.

WRIGHT: Everything happens for a reason. And everything you go through definitely it's not a coincidence. And it happened during M.S. Awareness Week. So, you know, everything kind of fall into place.

GUPTA: Monthly treatments are keeping his M.S. from progressing and he's not shying away from his diagnosis. Wright says he's proud to be the face of M.S.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

GUPTA: And still ahead, how to not be duped by product packaging when you visit the grocery store.

Stay with us.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

(BEGIN VIDEOTAPE)

GUPTA: When it comes to sodium, we simply eat too much, on average about four grams per day as an adult, when we really need about half that, about two grams per day.

There's a study that came out that said if you get down to two grams a day, we could potentially save about 150,000 lives a year, simply from that one thing. Frozen foods, they're going to have a lot of sodium in there for lots of different reasons, but mainly because sodium is a good preservative. That's why it's in there.

But also canned foods -- you know, a lot of parents, again like me, they go to canned foods. The problem is you get about 950 grams, almost a gram of sodium, just for something like this. Far too much for an adult and far too much for most kids as well.

Cereal is also an important food choice for many homes. Make sure you read those labels again.

One thing about reading labels as well, when you're reading labels, try and find foods like this that have less than five ingredients. That's really going to help.

When it comes to that sodium again, one thing that we do in our house, we never leave crackers or cookies just sitting out. We'll pour a little bit into a small table.

And it's important to find salt substitutes as well. We don't need salt shakers out there. But if you find a substitute like this, no salt, for example, or just some flavorings, you can both cut down on your sodium, increase your potassium and possibly solve a lot of those problems.

(END VIDEOTAPE)

GUPTA: I'll tell you, now, all those shopping tips are especially important for your kids, because too much sodium can hurt them the most and it's not just the salt shaker on the table. It can be a lot of processed, frozen foods. In fact, a recent CDC study found that 75 percent of meals that are targeted to kids have way too much salt. There's no specific regulation on this. And blood pressure of the kids in the study who ate these diets that were high in salt, they were seven times higher than in kids who didn't. High blood pressure is a major risk factor, as you know, for heart disease and stroke, something to be mindful of.

That's going to wrap things up for SGMD, but, you know, I can't say a proper goodbye without a shout-out to my Michigan Wolverines in the Final Four this weekend. I am proud of Blue. You help me chase life.

As always, let me know what you think, CNN.com/Sanjay. And follow me on Twitter @DrSanjayGupta.

The top stories on the "CNN NEWSROOM" start now.