I am writing to wish each of you a wondrous Holiday filled with much happiness and joy. My daughters have come into town and I am feeling very blessed.
I am amazed that I have time to write this email and want to share why. In the past I would have been madly running around, exhausted and wishing the Holiday was over before it had begun.
Today, gifts are bought (OK not wrapped but I have plenty of time for that). My Christmas eve menu is planned and purchased and my house looks festive and nice (and clean ) ready for 19 guests tomorrow night. Girls have shopping and I have some time on my own.
So what did I do different?
Tip Number ONE: Take care of yourself
I remembered to take care of myself each and every day. I kept eating and drinking well. I went to yoga almost every day. I meditated each day even if I had to cut the amount of time. I rested when I felt tired. In the past taking care of me was the FIRST thing I cut when I got busy. This year I kept self care as a top priority. I got more done NOT less!
Tip Number TWO: Keep things simple
This year I bought plenty of duplicates re gifts. I love salt lamps and gave 3 different people the same lamp. I had fun buying all nieces and nephews funny hats. I bought some bottles of gorgeous unfiltered olive oil for foodies. Another group got fine cosmetic argon oil, another essential oil kits. Both of my girls got all of that plus cork yoga mats. All kids got my favorite gift for Holiday's-art supplies.
Remember the best gift can be an unexpected kind word or gesture.(They have the bonus of feeling best when given.)
Tip Number THREE: Green things up
(No not money-but sometimes money is the perfect easy and appreciated gift). I am talking about greens that grow, luscious cooling healing greens can be very helpful in keeping you cool and well through the holidays. I make a deal with myself over the holidays to eat an extra serving of greens for every holiday treat I indulge and delight in.
Tip Number FOUR: If you indulge DO delight!
Ban eating guilt for the Holidays. Stay awake and mindfully choose treats and then stay awake and ENJOY them. Pause and have a glass of water before you consider having two. Then if you CHOOSE to have two-enjoy the heck out of that one too (yes and another serving of greens).
Tip Number FIVE: A Whine about wine
I love wine but too much wine does not love me back. I never sit next to a bottle (somehow it seems to pour itself into my glass). My new neat trick is that I drink a few sips and then pour in some sparkling water. I call it my one glass Red..one glass Rosé system. I then follow up with a plain glass of sparkling water. Then even on the naughtiest of nights I rarely have more then two glass of wine. It works but I still whine about it.
Tip Number SIX : Have more fun then you can stand
We each have a happiness cap, an upper limit we are comfortable with. I am working on busting through my cap.
I implore you to do the same.
Do your best to laugh more, dance and sing. Tell a few bad jokes. Play. Be goofy. Allow yourself to really really RECEIVE deeply from others. Be open to listen.
On this holiday, remember to have a time of your life.
Winter. Good riddance! I spent almost the entire month of February sick! Some health coach..I found it embarrassing.
Even my beloved acupuncturist Dr Gong scolded me...."YOU KNOW how to take care of yourself!"
And I do!! I did what exactly I tell my clients not to do! I over worked, over traveled and in general over extended myself and did not listen to my body when it told me repeatedly.."rest, rest, REST". And so a nasty virus came along and I got a really good rest.
I had not been sick in a very long time and I think my body also decided..hmmm, nice time for a serious detox. hey-lets get rid of some of this old gunk while we are cleaning out the virus!
So I slobbered about for most of February. I also knew something else was happening. I was reevaluating who I was and what I truly stood for. It was wonderful and even scary. I was moving to a new state of body, mind and spirit wellness (in a pretty nasty way). The new state seems to be settling in. Spring is here and I am better..than ever. So this year I am in the deepest (and humbling) gratitude for spring that I ever remember!
Lets celebrate spring together! I have a wondrous Spring celebration planned meet up. We will be talking about Spring...the detox month and how the foods of spring support your bodies renewal in joy and happiness.
Come on April 1 (don't be "fool"ish and miss out). We will be tasting natures bounty..fiddleheads, ramps.....dandelions..yummy and funny food!
Join my Meet Up group. http://www.meetup.com/Staten-Island-Plant-Based-Nutrition-Meetup/events/229695161/
On July 23rd, 4 PM I will be presenting a perhaps controversial talk at The Acupuncture Center and you are welcome to attend just send an email or join my new Meet up Group.
This winter my Mom broke her ankle and I learned first hand just how debilitating a broken bone can be.
She suffered and is still suffering to some degree 7 months after. The first few months were a nightmare for all of us. My completely independent Mom was as helpless as a baby. And poor woman was in pain. I was writing my book on a tough deadline and was shocked at how exhausting it was to be an on call 24/7 caregiver.
I was cranky. I was mean. I was guilty. I would cook her up some delicious food as an offering. Finally I enlisted her to help me with the book which helped her get her mind off of her debilitating situation and gave her purpose. And I got some help, which all helped our relationship. (But the why...WHY DID THIS HAPPEN....she eats well, exercises daily.) And of course the PLEASE..let it never happen again, to her or to me, to anyone I work with, to anyone I can reach out to.
This sent me on a mission to understand bone health for my Mom, myself, my girls and my clients. Every other woman who comes in my office has been diagnosed with an osteo problem. So what can I do and how can I help them prevent what my family went through. First thing first, I look at is the diet. Since my whole life everyone has taught us to look to dairy as a good source of food for bone health, I started my inquiry at that junction.
I wrote about my families relationship with dairy in my book. (Love Food that Loves You Back) I had known for years that milk was not a good food for sinus and other mucous (y) conditions. I also did not want anyone in my family to ingest growth hormones or antibiotics fed to the cows so if I bought milk it was organic and antibiotic and hormone free. I took it out of the diet of my daughter when we discovered she had cystic fibrosis and argued for years with her doctors who swore she would develop weak bones. I learned that broccoli and other greens had plenty of calcium and lucky for me she loved broccoli. She ate buckets of broccoli! She ate it daily and when tested when she was 26 her bones where the strongest of anyone with her condition. All those poor kids forced to drink tons of milk, aggravating their condition and not even getting the benefit of the promised strong bones.
My own Mom was a daily cheese eater. She did not drink milk. So I wondered..maybe she should have??
I read article after confusing article. Finally I decided I wanted to see some science, and some studies. I thought there must be a few and make the best decisions I could make.
To my shock there is absolutely no shortage of science or studies! There is a huge amount of absolutely definitive, impressive and conclusive studies. And those studies are not new. They are just ignored even though many many thousands of people are adversely and outrageously affected.
Here is a summary:
- The only people in the world who can predominantly digest dairy at all are whites and Northern Europeans. They adapted to consuming dairy from many moons of adaptation because of their cold climate. It is a mixed blessing. It does not appear to be a good food for human consumption for a huge host of reasons.
- Yes the mucous issue which I knew about. Apparently it impairs our lymphatic system. But so much more.
- Dairy appears to upset our brain. Human milk has a very different composition to cows milk. Babies who are breast fed have higher IQ's than babies who are fed cow's milk. (of course those babies get other benefits including bacteria ingestion from off of the breast that aids digestion).
- The huge, extensive results of The China Study linked an increase of cancer to those who ate dairy..the more dairy the more cancer.
- The biggest shocker is that it is rather conclusive that dairy causes osteoporosis! Our conventional dairy is the worst but all dairy with perhaps the exception of natural kefir and yogurt are acidic and difficult to digest and although there is a nice amount of calcium within each serving it appears to not be digested and the body actually robs your bones of minerals to protect your kidneys..unless there is an adequate amount of other minerals and all of the cofactors needed to absorb the calcium. (Vitamin D, Vitamin K, magnesium are a few known-all in adequate supply if we eat up a storm of greens)
- So I was thinking..OK so you can eat some dairy if you also eat your buckets of broccoli..and other greens...I had been doing that. I call it "greening the plate"
- Not so fast..new science seems to be rather certain that the dairy itself is preventing the body to build new bone making cells.
That is scary. Dairy is scary.
One thing is certain. Greens rock..it always comes down to greens. I have begun adding insurance I consume high mineral tea made from organic herbs daily and dried mineral organic herbs. (herbs are nettle leaf, alfalfa leaf,dandelion leaf,horsetail herb,red clover blossom.)
So a bit of sun, exercise, and tons of greens is the way to have nice strong bones..and some lovely tea.
Join my new Meet Up group. http://www.meetup.com/Staten-Island-Plant-Based-Nutrition-Meetup/members/
Fall has been a busy, gratifying and fun season in which I was able to make many new friends and reconnect to many others.
The first event, FOOD DAY at Sailor Snug Harbor, was more than a tad cold and windy but NOTHING compared to our last few weeks in and out of the polar vortex.
At Food Day I featured winter squashes, and it was a theme I repeated several times this season. Winter squash is exactly the perfect seasonal food to make you strong & sturdy and wow did we and do we need that this year. The squashes are beautiful, nutrient dense and easy to prepare. As a bonus they are sweet (without added sugar), and are a natural support for helping with sugar cravings!
The Staten Island Advance featured our cute Jack Be Little pumpkin, cooked whole in the over (400 degrees until fork tender) to be sliced and seasoned at the table. A bit sloppy for sure but seriously, could a recipe be easier? Or more fun?
Next event “Stand up and Lead” was at the College of Staten Island. (More squash… more and more. Butternut, Komucha, Acorn.) The event was sponsored by the United Federation of Teachers and was presented to address bullying at schools and to promote leadership in female teens. My contribution (other than the squash!) was to give tips on stress management and strategies, to stay conscious to not use food to deal with stress, and to journal when times are hard.
A few weeks later I went back to the College Of Staten Island, this time to give a class lecture at the Business School in which I presented my Nurture Nature Nutrition business plan………I did not bring any squash..but YES there were lots of picture of the squash in the power point presentation.
In January, I was honored to sponsor the food for the heart-felt dances of Larissa Schiano at the green belt recreation center. (And yes, I fed people squash, but also lots of veggies/brown rice--yummy food).
Since fall I have been singing the praises of root vegetables and winter squashes!
They are magical, fortifying foods and our bodies LOVE them! Eat them roasted in olive oil. You can cut up or even roast whole (like beets or carrots or sweet potatoes..even small pumpkins!) Roast at 400 degrees, season with garlic and rosemary or your favorite herbs.
I am conducting a workshop called “Loving the Heart of You” at 5 Boro Power Yoga in New Dorp, Staten Island from 11:30AM-1PM. The heart is the seat of your joy and your happiness.
In this workshop you will learn ancient secrets and the latest science about how to keep healthy and heal your heat. (Come taste the food reported to be Aphrodite’s favorite!) This workshop will be educational and fun, and heart healthy, delicious food treats will be included. So come!! With 1 million people per year needlessly dying too early from heart disease, this is a workshop not to be missed!
In September, I began personal counseling and have been honored to work with some wonderful people to help them find their “personal best” blueprint. I want to help my clients move away from “poison foods” (sugar and processed foods) that make you sick, depressed, anxious… to eating luscious, yummy foods that makes you energetic, strong, smart and beautiful!
I currently have office hours at the Acupuncture Center in New Dorp on Thursdays and in The Village in Manhattan on Mondays. I may also add Tuesdays in Manhattan, and additional hours on SI. Stay tuned!
A super fun and healthy addition to my holistic health coaching has been offering personal herbal tinctures that are wild crafted by master herbalist Holly Hayward from Sugar Hill New Hampshire Botanicals. Judging from the re-orders and including my own, these herbs provide great support to wellness
Particularly helpful has been the anxiety/stress support formula, custom tailored that offers both short term relief and includes herbs known as adaptations that provide long term strength and resilience, so instead of “healing stress” the stress simply does not affect us as much. Too cool.
Holly also offers support in hormone balancing, kidney/bladder support, tummy powder made from slippery elm. Holly grows, tests the herbs in her lab, and custom tailors the formula…her motto is to treat the person not the “dis-ease they feel.” So far people have been feeling new levels of health and happiness as they switch to whole foods and natural remedies to improve their energy/life.
We will be conducting a four day holiday event in July to visit the gorgeous Sugar Hill area in New Hampshire. I will be teaching cooking and Holly will be teaching how to heal everyday ailments with herbs. More activities are being planned. This trip will be fun and educational, and will give you lots of tools in your toolbox to move to a new level of wellness. Stay tuned, but please express to me if you are interested and we will put you on a list.
We are also creating wait lists for upcoming group work sessions……sessions include seasonal eating, and the battle against inflammation.
Email me back for a free initial consultation for any service.
So let’s get ready to move into a new state of wellness. Because our motto is
“Life fully nourished is...Delicious!”