I recently posted a version of this on my Facebook page and received some wonderfully supportive responses...
Yesterday, I went to Dr. Warshowsky for a check up and he found a lump in my right breast. He thinks it should be benign. I am told to wait another couple weeks until after my next period to see if the lump goes down. He says that if there's any question, then I am to have a breast sonogram, which he gave me a prescription for.
Friends, please pray for my body to eliminate whatever toxicity is causing the lump and replace it with healthy tissue instead. Thank you.
I've been listening to a number of meditations and visualizations lately, so when I woke up this morning at 5:30 am, a meditation about my breast started to free flow into my journal. Since I believe that my health is affected by my mindset and my food choices, I incorporated the anxiety around both into my meditation so I could instead create more ease. Surprised at how easily it all came out on paper, I decided to record it, and thought to share it with you.
So, here it is...my first home-grown meditation ever... Thank you for whatever feedback or support you would like to offer during this time.
Anyone like myself who has suffered from high levels of heavy metals in their system has found out the hard way that our water supply is real threat to our health. It can take hundreds, if not thousands, of dollars in doctors bills, lab tests and supplements and months - if not years - of extremely careful attention to everything eaten to remove them. And it's often more problematic to remove them completely from the body, which can add more potential consequences once your levels are found to be excessive.
In that case, the pretension perceived around ordering a $7 bottle of water goes out the window. Your health is simply worth it.
The Bottle Debacle: Health vs. the Environment
No one will argue the ecological effect that bottled water has. Water is heavy and in order to transport it - especially in expensive glass bottles - it costs a lot of gas, which reduces natural resources and pollutes our environment. Considering how many people buy bottled water on a regular basis, the cumulative effect is considerable.
The other popular and convenient option, plastic, is problematic in other ways. Though plastic weighs less than glass to transport, they take forever to degrade. Plus, the chemicals in plastic such as bisphenol-A (BPA) mess up your hormones and endocrine system.
Purity: Is Bottled Just As Good As Tap?
In 2005, 20/20 did a show where they hired a lab to analyze the 5 top national brands of water and concluded that there's hardly any difference between them and tap. One may argue about the lab testing procedures and whether they left out important measures of water purity. However, one cannot deny that plastic bottles can still cause harm due to the disruptive hormone effects of the bisphenols.
What Is The Best Way To Treat Water?
When it comes to consuming water, purifying your own water is 10-20 times cheaper than buying bottled, it is healthier for you and your family and the environment. I use a water purifier in my kitchen for cooking and drinking and in my bathroom for my shower and bath. Check out Green Nest for qualified purifier options.
Want to learn more? Check out the trailer below for the film Last Call At The Oasis for additional perspective on water.
Growing food in my backyard in California was a very rewarding experience, but it had it's ups and downs.
One one hand, putting together a simple salad brings fast food to a whole other level when you can simply grab silky lettuce leaves and succulent vine-ripened tomatoes out of the back yard. Talk about totally delicious! On the other hand, I've learned that mint can be like a wolf in sheep's clothing, taking over an entire mixed herb pot so that everything else weeps to a sorry shade of yellow.
When you put your heart and soul into something alive like a garden, it's fascinating to see what abounds. Although it's a lot of effort at first and requires regular pruning, weeding, checks ups, and dirt under the fingernails, growing your own food makes you feel connected and alive. You get used to the rhythm of nature's growth and its sometimes fickle demands. And I miss it fondly, even romantically...
I heard about this guy on Facebook - student filmmaker Costa Boutsikaris - who last summer came upon some really neat Permaculture gardens. What's Permaculture? Imagine walking through a forest of trees and plants where everything grows naturally without maintenance, but instead of merely trees and plants the area grows food that you and I can eat.
Growing food naturally! No maintenance? Really? I'm all ears!
Boutsikaris is on a mission to spread the idea of Permaculture to the masses by going around to a bunch more places on the East Coast and filming their garden beauty and ingenious design, telling the story of how each came to life and their community's impact and experience.
To learn via film how we can design our own food systems that don't require a lot of effort once they're installed sound like a pretty good idea for families, schools and communities to come together in a healthier, more connected way on the universal level of food. It's like taking the horrors we watched in Food Inc. and Fresh to a level of action and awareness of what's positively possible.
Check out this trailer. And if you want Chris to take this idea to the next level with a movie, donate what you can. He's trying to raise $4000 in the next 14 days and offers a money back guarantee to donors. Yep, if Chris doesn't raise the total amount then he can't go on the road in his tripped out eco van and he'll return your $ to you. How about that for a cause and a purpose? Check it out below...
Although friends and family believe that I have ambitiously high standards for being healthy, I'll admit these standards are not always easy to keep.
I fail constantly, even if it's just with little things, which seem like big things to me. After all, being healthy is a big part of my identity, my work. Failure in this area is like I'm failing myself and my lifepurpose to help people with the very things I need help with myself at times.
At first, I was inspired to be healthy because with different food choices I found relief from debilitating pain that I thought I would have to live with the rest of my life. Even so, just because I know "the answer" as to what foods to eat doesn't mean I always stick to it. I have struggled over the years with my food choices in social situations and with temptation at every corner.
One thing I have learned for sure is that I need continual inspiration. Not just with recipes, but in my life. The most accessible external source of inspiration I've found comes from inspiring quotes and videos. When I feel stuck, it's important that my brain registers the fact that I am not alone and that there is another way out of some uncomfortable experience, even if I can't see it in the moment. Inspiration helps me with this.
I wanted to share with you my latest favorite inspiration, which comes from a wonderful video of the 2008 Harvard commencement speech given by JK Rowling, the author of the über-successful Harry Potter book series. Every time I listen to her words of wisdom I find something new to enjoy. I hope you enjoy it too.
Your stories and comments inspire me - so please tell me, what's yours? We all have wisdom to share and I hope that we can inspire each other. Whether you want to share what has inspired you or you have a question, I encourage you to write in the comments below. I would absolutely love to hear from you. Thank you and enjoy the rest of your day.
For a copy of the transcript to her address, please click on this link:
Yesterday I was fortunate enough to see Oprah Winfrey interview Deepak Chopra live at Radio City Music Hall in New York City. Seeing Oprah live in person, I could sense that her vibrant energy and enthusiasm were sincere. To me, she is one of TV's most shining examples of someone who knows who she is and is living out her purpose.
Deepak Chopra has truly mastered some of the simplest yet hardest questions we can ask about ourselves and spirituality. Watching him tackle and explain tough matters with ease and grace was really impressive. I was truly in awe of the power of being in their vicinity and seeing them together on stage.
of the things I valued the most from being in the audience was learning the 7 Questions To Lead You To Your Soul Profile, as told by Chopra. After he rattled off these questions - too quickly for any of us to write down - he had requests from high up in the stands to repeat them. We all knew they were key to helping us to more deeply understand ourselves and what we're here to do.
Oprah said it took her 2 days to answer the
first question, "Who am I?". At first, I thought that had to be an exaggeration. But then she quipped, that she didn't start out answering with the obvious, "I'm Oprah Winfrey". She explained - and I agree with her - that the "real" answer to the question, is not about one's career or credentials. It's also not even about playing a role such as a wife, mother or
In the past,
this question would have totally stumped me and I would have felt embarrassed, even just to myself. It would bring up so much anxiety and feelings
of inadequacy because I focused on stuff that I used to compare myself
with other more "successful" people.
So I got my first "Aha'gasm" (a term coined on this show;) this morning
before getting out of bed while contemplating the fact that it took
Oprah two days to answer "Who am I?". Thoughts started coming to me
quickly with my own answers. It was super early but I was excited; I jumped up and started effortlessly handwriting 15 pages of my answer plus lots of
other stuff too into my journal (I never made it to the other questions). It seemed like the whole Chopra/Oprah experience unlocked something in me that had been begging to come out for years. It was like I realized for the first time - without the chains of my self-doubt - that I don't need to hide who I am or what I'm good at any more. I am enough, as is.
Pondering "Who am I?" before now was such a friggin drag. It inevitably came with the pressure of defending the ebbs and flows of my life and career. No wonder I evaded answering the question before! This time, my pen started to flow with what I believe are my character strengths and the kinds of things I've been able to do my whole life without a whole lot of effort. Why this was so hard for me before? I was wearing such dark sunglasses of self-doubt and self-imposed harsh judgement that I couldn't see beyond them.
It occurred to me while I was writing that answering this question might also mean contemplating the kinds of traits that I want to be remembered for once I am gone. The obvious advantage is that I get to write the story of me NOW in a way that really reflects the lighter side of me, not the side that hopes others think I'm some kind of "perfect". Bah! This way of approaching this question gives me way more freedom to be me, and is way more real.
encourage you to pause after reading each line, don't just rush down the
list. That way, the intensity of each question will really sink in and
get you primed for contemplating each one on a deeper level:
1. Who am I?
2. What do I want?
3. What's my purpose in this life?
4. What sort of contribution do I want to make?
5. What are my unique skills?
6. Who are my heroes?
7. What is a meaningful relationship—what do I expect from one, and what do I give?
What do you think of these questions? Have they ever stumped you or do you feel clear about your life and your mission. Please share - I'd love to know your thoughts!
Anybody who has seen Food Inc. or Fresh will recognize straight-talkin' farmer Joel Salatin. He's funny, outspoken, and knows his facts cold. So if you haven't seen him yet, you'll likely won't forget him once you have.
I'm hoping that just like Food Inc. and Fresh, we'll be hearing more hubaloo about his new film, American Meat. In it, he and other sustainability straight-talkers make a very convincing point about how old fashioned farming methods deliver better quality foods that taste better, add more jobs to the economy, and allow farmers a good living.
Make unwinding after a long day an indulgence with a bath of heavenly scented sea salts by Lotus Love Beauty. I just recently indulged with their sweetly scented Jasmine and Rose bath salts and completely let go of my stresses of the day.
They have a whole line of products in addition to their bath salts with fabulous fragrances that I never tire of - soaps, oils, lotions and candles - that are perfect for gift-giving to someone special or yourself. I find all of their scents alluring - there isn't one I wouldn't like (rare indeed!).
All of their products are handmade in small batches with pure and exotic oils and non-toxic ingredients; the quality is apparent with each scented use. As a company, they give a portion of their proceeds back to communities in need through The Shanti Project. Now that's an indulgence that makes you feel good and give back at the same time.
Want your face to have that sun-kissed glow without the burn?
Check out my newest little beauty secret - tinted moisturizer with SPF 30 by Juice Beauty. It evens out your skin tone and imparts a slight luminescence that makes your face glow beautifully.
This is how to make sure the color goes on evenly: Apply a dime-size dollop into the palm of your hand. Rub together to cover the insides of both hands then pat all over face, neck and decollete. Rub it in - being careful to only pat it in around the eyes - and voila! Glowing, sun-kissed skin.
You'll like what you see - and your friends will notice a very natural looking improvement - without doing anything drastically different to your routine. It comes in three shades: sheer (no color), sand (what I use) and tan.
There's no doubt about it ~ an integral part of what makes a healthy body is healthy food.
That's why it's so important to question where your food comes
from. Even at places like Whole Foods, who is trying to get better at
sourcing local ingredients, there's nothing like talking to the produce guy/gal who knows the farmer who grew the beets you're about to buy.
I grew up in the Detroit suburbs and as far as my parents know, the best place to shop was at our local Kroger supermarket. My parents told stories at the
dinner table about when they were growing up how they used to go
shopping at the baker, the butcher, the cheesemonger but that the
supermarket was a game-changer. Mom would go on about how chicken actually had flavor and that on any given night most people made pork roast.
Back in the '70's when we were growing up, my mom had very little
interaction with anybody at the supermarket during her weekly shopping
trips, as do most people now. Still to this day, most Americans are so
disconnected with where our food comes from. To many, this may not seem
like a problem...until you get the runaround with the healthcare system
(hey, that cured me!). That's why if you're like me and are open to the
fact that better food is a big part of the solution to our healthcare
woes, you have to question where your food comes from.
That's why my favorite place to shop - outside of my own garden and the local farmers' market - is at Bi-Rite Market in San Francisco. It's a true goldmine of fresh, healthy, DELICIOUS food. I don't know what I would do without it!
Every employee at Bi-Rite puts their heart and soul into sourcing and knowing about the very best foods and ingredients they sell. Their butchers know the farmers that provide their meat. They also know the fishmongers that bring in their local, sustainable fish. They know how to select the freshest fruits and vegetables and which farm they came from AND how far it is from the city. They know several tasty ways to cook different cuts of meat, types of fish or veggies too - all you have to do is ask.
That's right - just ask! No need to be afraid or stumble around how to make that rib roast - you can ask someone at Bi-Rite knows what they're talking about and cares enough to give you the right answer! Best of all, they are inspired to continue to educate themselves on what quality and types of ingredients are truly healthy and they strive to provide it in everything they sell. Dang, if you live in San Francisco you simply have to shop at this place at least once!
That's why I'm excited to endorse Bi-Rite's new book coming out with recipes and tips on how to shop wisely, which you can pre-order now. Check out the video below, and if you haven't already, by all means check out the store! Enjoy and let me know what your favorite place is to shop.
Bi-Rite market is at 3639 18th Street between Dolores & Guerrero in the Mission District of San Francisco. They are open from 9-9 seven days a week. (415) 241-9760