Mind over Medicine

Thank you for all the bloglove I am receiving! I apologize for not replying to comments and email messages as promptly as I would like to, but please know that your love and messages are like honey poured directly into my heart and healing tonic for my soul!

I am doing what I need to do right now – taking time to slow down, creating space to listen to my heart, to meditate, to write, spending time with people  I love – doing the things I know will assist my body in healing.

I feel the benefits in many ways –  less pain, more laughter, more ideas coming to me, more creativity, wanting to dance and do somersaults on the lawn….. 🙂

I would like to share a book title and a TED talk – by Dr. Lissa Rankin

Dr Lissa Rankin speaks my language – re-afirming to me, just how important it is to listen to the body. How important emotional health is to our overall health – it’s not a separate entity – emotional health is the foundation of health.

Dr. Lissa Rankin is wildly inspiring. I hope you enjoy!

 Lissa Ranking M.D.

Another thing I want to tell mention, is that the famous VVP Virtual Vegan Potluck, will take place on the 16th of November.  If you are into healthy eating or simply wants inspiration to a healthier diet – the VVP is a mecca of great inspiration!

Read more here –   http://virtualveganpotluck.com/november-2013/

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What is stress telling you?

Since I became sick I have had my focus on, what I could do myself, to help my body heal, and preferably, as soon and as fast as possible!

Good food and rest

Good food and rest

But most importantly,

I have been thinking, what is there in this for me to learn?

I kept asking myself – how could I who is, so healthy, become so sick?

How?

How?

I poked and I prodded, I took deep breaths, I scratched my head, I turned and I swirled with the question……why, and what is in here for me to learn?

The illness, the imbalance in me, surely had a message, a very important one, I knew, but what was that message?

I finally got it ! I knew that stress creates havoc in people’s bodies. But somehow I didn’t think it also meant in my own body!

I could somehow, magically escape stress and just move on, without it having any effect on me…….

Just continue my tin soldier act …. stressing away….

But reality is, no-one can, not even me or you! Eventually, stress catches up with us and we break down in some way or the other. In my case, it was this infection, but it could just as well have been, depression or a heart attack…

I have to admit that I have been stressed, emotionally stressed for quite some time and finally my body broke down. I had neglected to hear my body’s desperate whispers in my ear for too long. I had not been listening and in the end it had to scream, in the form of an illness, that almost wiped me out, to finally, finally, get my attention!

Quiet enough to hear

Quiet enough to hear

Illness forced me to become quiet enough to hear.

What I learned is that we can eat healthier than heathy and we can exercise till the moon goes down. But, if we are stressed, its not going to work. It’s like a beach ball we can try to hold it down under the water, but it eventually will pop back up.

The truth is, stress robs us of life, it makes us sick – it’s a killer!

Please see the interview by clicking the link below, with Gabor Mate MD  –  Dr. Mate, a Vancouver based doctor, who has for many years worked in the Palliative Care Unit at Vancouver Hospital where he was the medical coordinator. Based on medical studies and his own  personal experience, and through his work, states that there are important links between the mind and the immune system.

http://www.democracynow.org/2010/2/15/dr_gabor_mat_when_the_body

Stress is a sign to slow down and listen. The problem with stress is that we become used to it and can hardly even feel we are stressed after a while it just feels “normal” to feel like that.

Stress actually starts in our childhood, for example, some of us learned not express emotions and needs as children. This means we are much more receptacle to becoming stressed because we have learned early on to suppress our emotions and needs.

Stress weakens our immumne system and makes us more prone to diseases and while stressed it’s more difficult to heal.

It’s obvious that stress creates imbalances in our bodies and our lives! It should be treated with uttermost respect – symptoms of stress are not only whispers, they are the body’s desperate scream for attention!

Read more about stress symptoms, signs and causes here

Read Gabor Mate’s book “When the body say’s no” Understanding the stress- disease connection.

Let Food be thy medicine — even in the hospital!

It has been busy around here and life is not always as you plan it or want it to be …..

I had just accompanied my beautiful daughter to her new home. Helped her as she settled and got ready to start a new life at university. We had some amazing days together and my heart was filled with of love, tenderness and tears, as Ihugged her goodbye and headed to the airport to fly home, without her.

Back home again, I was busy giving workshops and it was fun, I love it, I was busy preparing for another 4 workshops that were already booked. I was running my beautiful 10 morning k’s every other day.

IMG_5111

And then one day just after I had been out swimming in the lake, enjoying maybe the last swim this year — I got sick — really sick! And ended up being taken to the hospital in an ambulance! That, definitely, was NOT supposed to be!

I spent 4 intense days in the hospital, and gratefully I am now home recovering and feeling the strength and energy coming back. Wonderful!

But it definitely was not the food that healed me………..I know that for a fact. The doctors and nurses were absolutely incredible, they went out of their way to help me heal and feel comfortable. Amazing competent, warm and wonderful people!!

But the food……… that’s another very sad story!

During the 4 days, I was served 12 trays of food, each of them impossible to eat. I know I should be happy and grateful that I was served food at all ……. but honestly, it was the most unappetizing sad “food” I have ever seen in my life – I was chocked!

As a chef and a person who has been healed through food and lifestyle changes – I just couldn’t stop myself from thinking – why?

Food is so important for so many reasons!

Surely this can be done better!

Over and over again I was thinking how absurd it was that I was in hospital, a place of healing and there was no interest about the food. Fresh nourishing food is such a vital part in healing!

Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food – Hippocrates (year 431 BC!)

In those 4 days I did not see a single fruit or vegetable, never mind the fresh anything at all – no fresh fruit nor fresh vegetables – no – ZERO – none at all!

The food on the trays had perhaps never been fresh! Everything was processed and as far as I could judge, had nothing to do even with nourishment! And served in dull plastic containers on a dull plastic tray.

With a rumbling tummy and food fantasies on my mind, I talked to the nurse about the food – they said that over 70% !!! of all trays go back untouched!

70% -What a waste!!! What a shame, how sad, what a total missed opportunity!

We know that healthy food helps us heal faster, we know that healthy food has the potential to prevent disease. We know that sick people more than anybody needs nourishment.

We also know that a vast majority of diseases are caused and directly linked to unhealthy lifestyle and eating the wrong diet……..so why don’t the hospitals grab the chance and serve sick patients enjoyable, nutritious fresh food. Grab the chance to feed and inspire healthy living – and help the patients to heal themselves.

So why? …….. The argument is “It’s too expensive!”

But is it, really?

In Denmark, at one point in time, they went through the same gloomy experience! 40 tons of hospital food was chucked away every day, because it was so grim, no one wanted to eat it.

To change that, they employed professional chefs along with dieticians and they designed menus for people to enjoy, to look forward to every day and to help them heal faster!

Serving meals, 3 times a day became a thing of the past — because when you are sick you are not necessarily hungry on the dot. Instead every patient has a menu and a telephone. And when hungry, they simply take the menu, pick their fancy and call the chefs in the kitchen. The meal is then prepared, cooked from fresh natural ingredients and brought up to the patient. Nutritious, fresh, delicious — real food from real people – who care and love cooking!

What they found was, not surprisingly, that there was hardly any food waste, patients got well, out of bed and home faster, too.

And, it was not more expensive!

But unfortunately, it is in general the same story – no matter where you are in the world – hospital food has a bad reputation.

Hospitals around the world are missing a huge opportunity. Hospitals, our health care system, could be the greatest example of health! Show us how to enjoy food, teach us what to eat to stay healthy and nourished, the best food for our bodies – to assist us heal, to help fight disease and prevent it.

Great food in hospitals would not only help us heal, but it would also inspire us all to practice more healthy living when we got back home.

Imagine how we could assist the body in healing if we were served something like this:

Freshly squeezed carrots

Freshly squeezed carrots

Green smoothies

Freshly prepared green smoothies with fresh spinach leafs and juicy fruits

Creamy Raw Food Oatmeal

Creamy Raw Food Oatmeal, with almonds, dates and apple – a glass of freshly squeezed orange

Fresh fruits and veggies

Free access to fresh fruits and veggies

Crispy Spring Rolls

Crispy Spring Rolls

A bowl of freshly made tomato soup

A bowl of freshly made tomato soup made of REAL tomatoes

Instead of this –

Breakfast?

Jello for breakfast?

Lunch?

Lunch?

Not sure...

Not sure….

On the fourth day I cried…….

If we have to spend money – why not spend it well?

I know there are other places that have changed the concept of tasteless grey hospital food – and with great success – that’s here in Canada.

Listen to this inspiring talk by Joshna Maharaj – an amazing passionate woman who helped change the hospital food in Toronto.

Hurraaa for people like Joshna!

The power of music

This past week I have been reminded about the many powerful benefits music has on us. What a huge positive impact it has on our lives – Imagine a world without music! Music is in our lives in so many ways. When we listen to music, it awakes all kinds of emotions in us – joy and happiness, sadness and sorrow. Music holds memories and music speaks to the heart. It connects us in a special way.

Where words fail, music speaks – Hans Christian Andersen Continue reading

Become an active participant in fighting cancer and other diseases in your body

Millions are diagnosed with cancer all over the world, every year. We all know people with cancer, we all know people who have died of cancer. Many of us know people with cancer in our immediate family. Some of us even have personal experience with cancer, or maybe even you are fighting the disease right now.

Cancer is everywhere.

“You have cancer”  must be THE most frightening diagnosis the doctor could ever give us. Most of us are rightfully terrified of cancer.

This past year, I have heard of 7 cases in my family and close circle of friends, 7 cases! And more examples come up as I write this post.Even as a young girl I had a boy friend who died of cancer. I cry every time I hear of someone dying of cancer and I ask myself, why? Why is it that so many people get sick with cancer, nowadays?

Is there anything we can do to actively fight and prevent these diseases? I firmly believe that’s possible!

Here are 6 inspiring sources of information that can help you to be an active participant in fighting cancer and other diseases.

During my own healing journey I have come across many incredible stories of people who have healed diseases naturally and it is literally fascinating!

Can we actually do something to create an environment within the body that can help prevent cancer or stop it from spreading? Is it possible to support the body to heal on its own? And hereby add a powerful supplement to what the doctors can do for us?

According to these studies – yes it is possible!

In this post I will look at some very inspiring sources of information. This is information that everyone should know about. Information to help us prevent diseases like cancer and to create the worst possible condition for cancer cells in the body to spread. It is information that brings hope – that we can assist our bodies in healing and be an active participant, by giving it what it needs to fight disease and heal.

  • The book The China Study by T. Colin Campbell, PhD and Thomas M. Campbell , MD. This book is such an incredibly important book about the relationship between diet and disease. It is the research and story about how we can reverse diseases like heart disease, diabetes and cancer!! Dr Colin Campbell’s research is ground-breaking and life-saving!
    The title comes from that Dr. Campbell found in his research that certain rule areas in China, cancer is non-existent!  He obviously wanted to find out why and eventually discovered that in some areas the people ate very little or no meat and no processed food. He found that there is a direct link between animal protein and cancer. Chapter 3 in the book is called “Turning off Cancer” – the research in the book is evident. There is a connection between the food we eat and the diseases we get. It is also evident that it is possible to reverse these diseases and we can do that by taking the reins and be active participants in our own healing.
  • Kris Carr is a living testimonial of this. She was diagnosed with cancer in the liver and the lungs!  She was told, “Sorry, no cure”, and given very short time to live . Today it is 10 years since Kris was diagnosed with that incurable disease, Cancer, and she is living proof that it is possible to turn cancer off! She did turn cancer off, and is fitter than she has ever been. As a journalist diagnosed with cancer she documented her very private journey with cancer from the point that she was diagnosed and then her journey onward.  She is also the author of two wonderful New York Times Bestselling books – “Crazy Sexy Cancer” and “Crazy Sexy Diet”. She is an incredible woman, so inspiring she will knock your socks off and I highly recommend her work. She has been and continues to be my hero and my inspiration. An amazing woman!
  • Food Matters is an incredible documentary about the food we eat and the connection between diet and disease. Food Matters have made 2 very powerful documentaries, one is called “Food Matters” and the other “Hungry for Change”. I highly recommend these movies. They are mind-blowing .
  • “Forks over Knives” another incredible documentary based on the work of Dr. T. Colin Campbell’s research – another mind blowing documentary that will change not only the way you look at food but probably your life. It is a documentary that saves lives! It tells how we can reverse diseases like heart disease, diabetes and cancer!
  • Dr Otto Warburg won the Nobel Prize in 1931 for his discovery that cancer is caused by weakened cell respiration due to lack of oxygen at a cellular level. He discovered that in the absence of oxygen, the cell reverts to a primal nutritional program and nourishes itself by converting glucose through fermentation. This creates an acidic condition in the body and the cancer cells then begin to multiply. Cancer cells are anaerobic, they cannot live in an environment rich in oxygen. When we eat plant based foods we assist our bodies to be more alkaline – also meaning more aerobic, which cancer cells cannot live in!

This is the trailer for Kris Carr’s inspiring documentary

This is the trailer for Food Matter’s

This is the trailer for Forks over Knives – a documentary that leaves you empowered, because you learn there is so much you can do to heal!

This is an inspiring YouTube about a young lady who cured herself of ovarian cancer

Links to books and relevant websites

The China Study

Kris Carr and her Crazy Sexy Cancer

Crazy Sexy diet by Kris Carr

Food Matters 

Forks over Knives

Victoria Boutenko, Green for Life

This is great news! This means we can be grateful and accept all the doctors can do to help us heal – and at the same time, take the reins and go full power into doing whatever possible, ourselves, to create the very best conditions for the body to heal, by boosting the body with nutrients, healthy plant-based alkaline foods, fresh green juices and lots of green smoothies.

Kris Carr’s books “Crazy Sexy Cancer” and “Crazy Sexy Diet” are full of tips and great advise on how to alkalize your body and boost your health, to create optimal conditions for your body to heal.

I hope this post will inspire you to take the rains and be an activist for your own health – to prevent disease, to heal and to flourish.