4 Roots of Optimum Wellness

There are four essential parts to being healthy: Diet, Exercise, Sleep & Attitude.

Vitae Elixxir Healing Herbs

A proprietary combination of ten disease-fighting herbs used for more than 40 years and helping thousands of people with serious health issues.

The Prisoner of Carrot Castle Book App

Help your kids discover the fun of eating vegetables with the help of a whimsical interactive story (over 40,000 downloaded).

Books by Author & Health Coach Chris Pedersen

In a world of adventure and imagination, kids’ books in print and digital that encourage a healthy lifestyle.

6 Tips to Lose Weight

Don’t count calories—take a serious look at the food you want to eat, then ask, ”Is this something that will give my body good health?”

Friday, February 17, 2017

Cauliflower & Tomato Quiche Recipe

I served this dish to my brother and sister-in-law who had just moved into the same new-home community we did a few weeks earlier. Moving is no fun and having a good home-cooked meal can make all the difference in getting back into the move with renewed energy. Running out for a quick meal you may regret eating or trying your luck by buying a quesadilla or pulled pork sandwich from the food truck that shows up each day at 11:30 could halt your progress.

I thought this recipe I found in the Costco Connection magazine would be a hearty meal. Trying new recipes on dinner guests is a gamble, but I was game to try it.

It did not disappoint. Try it out and see what you think.

Cauliflower & Tomato Quiche Recipe

from Costco Connection Magazine
yield 8 servings

category Main Dish
cuisine Vegetarian

1 small cauliflower, cut into florets
4 Tbsp olive oil
2 cloves of garlic, minced
8 organic eggs
1/2 C fresh chopped basil
1 C flour or gluten-free alternative 
1 1/2 tsp baking powder
1/4 tsp ground turmeric
1/2 tsp ground cumin
Pinch chili flakes
1 1/2 tsp Himalayan sea salt
Ground pepper to taste
5 oz of Parmesan cheese*, grated
1 1/2 C grape tomatoes, sliced

1. Preheat oven to 400 degrees..
2. Steam or roast cauliflower until tender, about 12 minutes. Set aside.
3. In a small skillet, heat olive oil over medium heat. Add garlic and sauce until fragrant. Scrape garlic into a large bowl.
4. Add eggs and basil to bowl and whisk ingredients. Add dry ingredients, seasonings and Parmesan. Whisk until smooth.
5. Gently stir in cauliflower and tomatoes.
6. Grease 9 1/2" spring form pan with coconut oil. Pour mixture into pan, spreading evenly.
7. Place on middle rack and bake for 40-45 minutes, until golden brown and set. a knife inserted into the center should come out clean. Remove from oven and let rest for 15-20 minutes. Slice into wedges and serve.

*Since I don't eat cheese made from cow diary, I used a sheep's cheese parmesan

Now I have another great recipe for that overlooked and under appreciated vegetable cauliflower. Here are a few more delicious cauliflower recipes:

Curry Roasted Cauliflower
Cauliflower, Brussels Sprouts & Red Beans
Potato-Less Potato Salad
Indian Dal
Red  Potato, Green Beans & Cauliflower Salad


Wednesday, February 8, 2017

Cancer Alternatives Medicine Conference, March 2-4, 2017

When I first got my cancer diagnosis in 2008, I spent a lot of time researching and learning about my condition, the prognosis and cancer alternatives treatments. I discovered the Annie Appleseed Project, a non-profit organization that brings awareness to complementary and alternative treatments for cancer. Founder Ann Fonfa started the website as a resource for her own cancer treatment some 24 years ago since she found there was little information on the Internet about alternative and complementary treatments.
Annie Appleseed Project Mission Statement
The Annie Appleseed Project, a 501(c)(3) non-profit corporation, provides information, education, advocacy, and awareness for people with cancer and their family and friends who are interested in complementary or alternative medicine (CAM) and natural therapies from a patient’s perspective.
The Annie Apple Seed project has grown to include an annual conference, now in its 11th year. Called the Complementary and Alternatives Medicine (CAM) Conference in West Palm Beach Florida, alternative cancer practitioners, patients, advocates and family can come to learn about new therapies and meet like-minded people. I always wanted to attend the conference and this past fall, Ann contacted me and asked if I would like to be on the Patient Panel on Saturday of the three-day conference. The CAM Conference begins Thursday, March 2 and runs through Saturday, March 4, 2016.

With a list of speakers addressing various natural cancer treatments, two of note are keynote speakers Linda Isaacs, MD and Michael Schachter, MD. Dr. Isaacs worked with Dr. Nicholas Gonzalez for 24 years and will discuss the protocols that she and Dr. Gonzalez worked on. Dr. Schachter will address the metabolic nature of cancer and what that means for treatment.

I'm most excited about meeting new friends on the journey and perhaps being a help for some who feel hopeless when their cancer is due to genetics. I am a great example that making healthy lifestyle changes can alter one's genetic disposition.

When I started my own journey, I made dramatic changes to my diet, and added several key supplements to my cancer fighting protocol. I did not know if what I was doing would have any affect toward stopping my body from producing cancerous polyps in my colon, but I knew I had to try. Today I know that what I do works and comes under what science calls epigenetics (genetics affected by your environment).

This is the message I want to bring to the Patient Panel at the conference. You are not a victim of your genetics. Taking action will save your life.
One of the coolest features of this conference, unlike any other that I know of, is the food. Organic, locally grown food will be served for a dinner gala on Thursday, lunch Friday and Saturday, and fresh juices and food in the morning and throughout the day. I am really looking forward to this conference.

Friday, December 2, 2016

Invasion of the Fruit Flies

Ewww! Right? There seems to be an invasion of fruit flies in the Northern California region. Do you have a problem where you live?

We recently moved into our new home and found fruit flies constantly plaguing us. You can never catch them. They're so wispy and tiny. As soon as you try to swat or clap them, they seem to be jetted away by the action. Those little buggers have a short life cycle. 24-hours after eggs are laid, new flies hatch and soon begin their harassment, which lasts up to 50 days.

After noticing they were everywhere—other homeowners complained about them and you'd see them in stores and other establishments over a wide geographic area—I realized it was time to get serious about getting them out of our house.

A simple trap is all you need to entice the little bug-eyes to their last drink. You'll be amazed at how many you catch. And you thought there were only a few in your home. Ha! They were about to take over!

Throw out any overripe fruit which become breeding fields for the flies. Also, take care when you shop. If you see fruit flies around the produce, you can be sure you are bringing more home if you buy any fruit there.
Get a large mason jar and fill it with about a half a cup of apple cider vinegar. Add a drop or two of dish soap to break the surface tension of the cider so the pests fall into the liquid and expire. Using a sheet of paper, create a funnel with a half-inch opening, then drop it into the mason jar and make sure there are no cracks where a fly can escape. They will be attracted to the vinegar, fly into the jar and be unable to get out. They can't do a helicopter maneuver—thankfully.
Leave the trap out until you complete a full life cycle for the pesky flies and then some. You don't need to change the vinegar, but it gets so full of flies. Yuck! I throw it out and start with fresh about every 4 days. You should wait until the trap is clear of flies before you consider your home free from them.

Can't wait for the next plague of pests. Hope it's not voles. Those vermin infested the foothills in huge numbers in 2001. Whole landscapes were destroyed. I guess a few fruit flies aren't that bad.

Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Wisdom Wednesday

I recently watched the Essential Oils Revolution 2 Online Event. Wow! Lots to learn. I hope you all took advantage of this awesome educational forum on essential oils. I'm certainly behind on understanding what, when and how to use essential oils myself.

Here is a gem from the summit—A liver cleanse formula to rub on your skin over the liver.  The application location is below the right breast at the lower right rib cage. The caster oil is a carrier oil used to deliver the oils to the area. You can also use coconut oil or vegetable glycerin as a replacement for the caster oil (which is sticky and can stain clothing).

Use 1 teaspoon of carrier oil for the total 20 drops in this formula. That is a 20% dilution allowing the oils to be massaged into a larger area and absorb slowly. The dilution does not reduce the effectiveness of the oils—they simply enhance the oils and soften any reaction that a straight oil may have on the body.

This formula is great for cancer conquerers, whether you are doing conventional or alternative treatments. The liver needs to release toxins in order to heal.

Thursday, August 25, 2016

Look for the Butterfly ~ Non-GMO Verified

Last month President Obama signed weak and flawed legislation into federal law that addresses GMOs in foods. It is called the DARK (Deny Americans the Right to Know) act by those of us who believe we have the right to know what's in our food. It is a win for big chemical and biotech corporations, but a blow to the American family and the hope for a food supply that is healthy and transparent.

It is also a stain on our republic as it erases any laws that states enacted (like Vermont) that require food labels to identify GMO ingredients. Plus it seems to be a clear violation of the 14th Amendment, as it would allow corporations to use QR codes instead of clear packaging on labels.

Basics of the GMO Labeling Bill (aka DARK Act)
Let's break it down:
  • The words "GMO" or "genetic engineering" will NOT be required to be anywhere on the package.
  • 95% of the ingredients that are GMO will NOT be included in the "labeling."
  • The "labeling" that will be "required" is an option of a QR code, a telephone number, website or symbol. 
  • There will be no fines for not complying, so claims that this law is "mandatory" are simply false.
  • Vermont's state law (which which would have gone into effect his year) to label GMOs is pre-empted.
  • CT, ME and VA that have pending GMO labeling laws have also been pre-empted.
The law is highly discriminatory as well. Many senior citizens, minorities, low income and rural residents do not have access to wi-fi, Smart phones or cell reception. Thus it appears to be a violation of the 14th Amendment.

So you see just how bad and empty this law is? Pathetic comes to mind.

Did someone say, "The system is rigged"?

So much for the rights of the American citizenry vs Big Business. It is very sad indeed.

Read a more thorough analysis by the Cornucopia Institute and how the Organic Trade Association (OTA) betrayed consumers, organic farmers and the many organic-related industry associations, plus what might happen going forward.

Meanwhile, the Non-GMO Project, a non-profit organization, created with the cooperation of food manufactures wanting to demonstrate that their foods do not contain GMO ingredients has been growing its list of Verified products.

What to Look For To Protect Your Family
Even though the battle to clearly label is lost, there is plenty to be thankful for. The process of putting forth federal and state legislation has brought widespread public awareness of GMO foods and what it is.

So what do you do now?
  1. Look for the Non GMO Project Butterfly on foods you choose.
  2. Buy foods labeled Organic which must be free of GMO ingredients.
  3. Eat a clean diet (food that contains NO artificial ingredients—chemicals, preservatives, additives, colors and GMOs)
  4. Buy produce from the Organic section.
  5. Buy from local farmers, but ask them about their farming practices (what do they put on the crops and when) 
This business of food is big in our world today. With cancer and other disease on the rise and so much in our environment we cannot control, we must be vigilant to put the purest and best into our bodies—It's the fuel (mostly plant-based) that makes our bodies healthy and able to heal from disease.

Monday, August 1, 2016

Listen & Learn to Be Healthy

This past spring I listened to the 2016 Food Revolution Summit created by bestselling author John Robbins and his son Ocean Robbins. At the summit, John interviewed 24 of the world’s top food experts, including 16 medical doctors. More than 230,000 summit participants heard these enlightening interviews. For me they were very instructional and I learned new stuff. For others it was surely helpful for discovering a healthy lifestyle.

For the next week (and maybe longer), the Food Revolution Network is replaying for FREE three of those interviews—In fact, the three most popular presentations from the summit.

  • You’ll hear Joel Fuhrman, M.D. offer penetrating insights into exactly what foods to eat to achieve optimum nutritional excellence.

  • Mark Hyman, M.D. will tell you about the science of nutrition and how to take advantage of the best elements of paleo and vegan diets.

  • And Neal Barnard, M.D. will share breakthroughs in scientific understanding of how to not only prevent disease, but also to expand vitality and joy.

These interviews are available to listen to FREE for the next week.

Enjoy and be enlightened.

Wednesday, July 20, 2016

Wisdom Wednesday

There are 14 million new cancer cases each year with an expected 70% increase in the next 20 years. But did you know that 90% of cancers are preventable?

Natural cancer treatment and prevention is possible.

In the post Health Sites You Should Subscribe To, I identified six websites you should sign-up to receive email updates. Here's another to add to that list: Cancer Tutor. The “Cancer Tutor” website is a product of the natural medicine cancer researchers of the Independent Cancer Research Foundation, Inc. (ICRF). Every one of the 350+ articles and chapters was written by a natural medicine cancer researcher.

If you are in the throes of dealing with cancer, discover your natural cancer treatment on Cancer Tutor. As background, check out 14 Questions and Answers About Cancer that could save your life.

Saturday, July 16, 2016

Vegetable Mélange with Tamari Ginger Dressing

When you were a kid did you not like mixing your food? I'll bet some of you didn't like different foods to even touch on the plate? Or were you the type that mixed it all up when you ate? My father used to say, "It all goes to the same place..." so it doesn't matter that you don't mix the food, it gets mixed up eventually.

Here's a recipe that you can mix or not. Those with "do to touch" requirements... well... you can get a bigger plate.

Vegetable Mélange with Tamari Ginger Dressing

from Inspired by Food Matters
yield 6-8 servings

category Salad
cuisine Vegan

1 C farro, soaked for 6 hours & rinsed
1-2 C filtered water
1/4 red cabbage shredded
2 tsp apple cider vinegar
juice of 1/2 lime
1 C cooked garbanzo beans
1 avocado, thinly sliced
1 large carrot, grated or spiralized
1 large zucchini, graetd or spiralized
2 Tbsp tamari
1 tsp freshly grated ginger
2 Tbsp sesame oil
1 tsp garlic sesame seeds, aka Gomasio

1. Boil 1 cup of water and add soaked and rinsed farro. Turn off heat and let sit for 4-5 minutes.
2. Add shredded cabbage to small bowl with apple cider vinegar and lime juice, stir and set aside.
3. Drain farro and let cool.
4. For dressing, combine tamari, sesame oil, ginger and sesame seeds in a small bowl and whisk well.
5. Divide cooked farro, cabbage, sugar snap peas, avocado, carrot and zucchini between bowls and drizzle with tamari dressing.
6. Enjoy!

notes: • If you did not soak the farro overnight, boil the farro 2 cups of water for 10-12 mintues. Draine and let cool. FYI, soaking overnight makes the grain more digestible.

I hope you are getting plenty of exercise, sleep, and eating lots of plant-based, clean foods. And of course, staying positive and hopeful, which can be getting harder these days.


Sunday, July 3, 2016

Making Smoothies with Seasonal Fruit

Recently I changed my juicing/smoothie routine to maximize the nutrition I get. Seasonal fruit boosts the nutrition of your smoothies with added fiber and antioxidants.

First, I juice veggies (kale, chard, mixed baby lettuce, carrots, celery, cilantro, beets, ginger, etc). Then I transfer the juice to my blender and add a piece or two of fruit (apple, cantaloupe, mango, pears, fresh berries, etc) and blend for one minute.

What this combination accomplishes is a highly nutritious drink with concentrated nutrients from the veggies and blended fruit with all the benefits of eating whole fruit.

Adding a variety of fruits to your diet has great benefits. They provide essential nutrients and vitamins including potassium, Vitamin C, and folate. Fruits also provide necessary fiber, which helps moderate the effect their sugar has on insulin, thus reducing diabetes and heart disease. In addition, fruit adds such beautiful color to any meal!

Best to get fruit from a local source and in season, which assures the fruit has optimum nutrition. Check out this seasonal fruit chart created by Shari's Berries showing over 50 fruits by peak season.

Keep in mind that seasonal fruits can vary from year to year depending on the weather. An area with extreme cold or heat could have a shorter availability and growing season. Best to check with the grocer to learn which fruits are in season. You are especially likely to get fruit in season at your local farmer's market.

Happy 4th of July!