Thursday, January 29, 2009

being a part of the process

hi guys-

i just got back from a day in washington, d.c. i was invited to present oral testimony to the senate advisory committee on the new dietary guidelines being issued in 2010. i have to say that i was a nervous wreck...and worked my butt off on research and ideas for my 3 minutes. intimidating would be the best word to describe the experience...until i actually started talking and realized that the entire committee really wanted to hear what i (and all the other people there) had to say...they really wanted to hear our views and our ideas...

just to be a part of that process is amazing. i am not a wild, blind, flag-waving patriot, but i admit to being unbelievably impressed with the fact that we have a government that allows us to speak to them...even if we think they don't listen.

the gist of what i said was simple...that it's time to wake up and smell the toast...that with just one look around at the health (and weight) of the american population to see that the current guidelines are not actually guiding us to health...

so i talked about the health benefits of a plant-based diet. my colleagues of the day included dr neal barnard, the president and founder of physicians' committee for responsible medicine ( and a variety of other nutritionists and activists for the cause of creating awareness for eating a truly healthy diet...a plant-based diet.

and i talked about advertisers and how they confuse the american public by showing fit, slim, healthy people eating junk food...but when most people eat it, well, we know how they end up looking and feeling...

i ended up by saying that there is nothing we can't achieve if we are healthy...and that we will achieve little if we are not...i asked the committee not to turn 'yes, we can' into a campaign slogan, because if we aren't healthy, well...'no, we can't.'

it was so much fun and humbling and awe-inspiring...i was honored to be asked, honored to be a small part of what could be a big change in the way we nourish ourselves.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

what a day!!!!!!!

hi guys-

well, i have stopped crying long enough watching the inspiring inauguration of our next president to blog for a few seconds.

my husband says that none of you care about my politics and that you want me to talk about food and health. well, to me, part of being whole and healthy is being an active part of your community and working each and every day to create the kind of world we want to live in.

the election of this new president tells us that when we come together as a unified people and speak with one voice; when we unite and work for the change we want...we are a force of nature and we become the change we wish to see in the world.

imagine if we applied that same fervor, that same inspired passion to changing the quality of food we consume and feed to our families and loved ones (you know i was going to bring this back to food...). if we decided that enough was enough, that we would no longer accept poor quality food just because it was cheap and easy...if we decided that we would only accept the very best quality that our farmers, producers and manufacturers could produce, what changes would we see then?

would we see a world free of so many of the ills that plague us? would we see less add-hd, less type 2 diabetes, less arthritis, less indigestion, less sexual dysfunction, less obesity, gorgeous skin and hair, truly graceful aging?

we'll only know if we come together, as we have in this election of barack obama, this vote for change and become the change we want to see in our food...

see ya.'

Monday, January 12, 2009

oy vey, oprah!

hi guys-

first, let me apologize for being so long in between blogs, but...i have had this awful cold-flu-plague that is floating around the universe...but i am getting back on my feet slowly, so here i am...

second, those of you who posted questions...i will answer them in an entry tomorrow on this blog, cool?

and now...the rant...just about all my students watch oprah and ask me what i think...i don't really watch her too often, but when i read about her life makeover series because she has gained weight...again...i thought i would watch and see what was up.

well, i suffered through all of last week's touchy-feely, love yourself as you are, money advice, sex advice and advice on how to attract what you want. i watched oprah 'out' herself and her lack of control over eating and food. i watched dr oz (with great interest...i do love his work...) talk about the non-benefits of not eating well...i watched bob greene talk about the disconnect between weight gain and lifestyle and the role of exercise...

and today, oprah is talking to people who have lost weight and gained it back...from a body builder to a biggest loser winner who has gained it all back. she just finished talking with a woman who has learned about foreplay. and now she is talking about her thyroid problem...again...

so here we are, in day 6 of this best life makeover series that has placed its focus on making the body healthy, strong, fit and not fat...and what has been missing in each and every episode? what factor has not been addressed (that i have seen...and i did miss some...)? one that i have seen has talked about food.

yes, there is more to weight loss than food. there is more to finding your ideal weight than what you eat. but without the foundation of a healthy, whole, unprocessed, natural diet, you will spend your life on that carousel of weight loss and gain. you will struggle constantly. in order for us to achieve health, vitality and our ideal weight, the formula is simple...we need to eat very well...meaning a plant-based diet of whole, unprocessed, natural foods...we need to exercise every day...we need to live naturally, as humans were meant to live, which means, in my view...working hard, playing hard and resting in balance...being a part of a community, having a purpose, making a difference...

look, i think that oprah does great work in the world and is most likely a fine, if i could speak to her, i would say only this...relax; stop fighting and laying the blame on self-esteem and self-love; lay the blame where it lies, on your dinner plate. your food choices will give you the clarity you need to discover the path of diet and exercise that will get and keep you where you want to be.

talk to you later...