Friday, October 31, 2014

I continue to mortify my children....

Yes, I admit it. I was one of those mothers.  The kind of mother that mortified their children. I chose to hand out pretzels instead of sugar on Halloween. I thought I was doing the right thing.  Or I would give out stickers or pennies and my poor children were mortified.

After all, why do we assume that an addictive, mood altering, mind altering drug is good for our children in massive quantities?   I think as the movie Fed up displayed,  we don't need terrorists to weaken America, just the SAD standard American diet.

So what am I doing for Halloween? My children are all grown and we're skipping town.  Instead, I think we will dance in the graveyards tonight! We are going out of town to the memorial service for my Son in Law’s Father who was tragically killed in a car accident.  The family will celebrate his life and his humor.  I think he might have liked to dance to this newly released song that brought tears to my eyes:

We also happen to be on a 21 Day cleanse, so how do we take this on the road with us?  First, as you may know, I am cheap and I don’t plan very well.  Despite the fact that I posted on the Carpe Diem Wellness App yesterday the need for 3 P’s Prioritize, Plan & Prepare, it is hard for me to follow my own advice.  So I am cleaning out my refrigerator.  The great thing about juicing and smoothies is that you can usually find something in your garden or frig that needs to be used NOW.  So we have juice and smoothie ingredients.  I’m only taking my blender with me, not the juicer.

Second, I received an email this morning from George Mateljan Worlds Healthiest Cookbook on Lentil salad over greens, perfect easy thing to make and I happened to have the ingredients.  Third, I had several events this week that I brought food to, so we have leftover veggies and nacho cheese dip for the road and "better than tuna" with collard leaves. Last but not least, I had some pomegranate and cranberries so am making my favorite chia pudding.  I’m taking a carton of nut milk, some bowls, nori sheets with salmon and sprouts, cucumber and avocado and I have breakfast and lunch for the next three days.  All the recipes are in the 21 Day Kickstart to Wellness and have become second nature to me now to throw together.

So what are we going to do to replace those super sweet Halloween goodies? Hmmm, what else is super sweet and yummy? A weekend getaway with a good looking man?  I’ll have to think of something….as well as ways to continue to mortify my children...

Have a fabulous Holiday weekend.

Carpe Diem!

Wednesday, October 29, 2014

What Can a Homecoming Queen and Football Star Teach Us?

This past weekend was Georgetown University’s Homecoming and Football game.  I wouldn’t ordinarily know that as I’m not a football fan.  My daughter Margo could be a top sports broadcaster if she wanted to be, but that apple is not from my tree.

I was at Georgetown University for the Achieving Optimal Health Conference and had the honor to be the “preshow” to energize and inspire the audience before Keith Mitchell, former NFL linebacker began the keynote.

So stay with me here for a moment while I fantasize… what messages can a former homecoming queen and Football star provide?  Not many people know that I was my high school homecoming queen.  This does not come up in normal business or dinner party conversation.  I tell you this now as a confession, as I so desperately wanted to win this honor.  I so wanted to be popular and to fit in high school. I was a people pleaser. In fact I am still a recovering people pleaser and it’s been a challenge to put myself back on my to do list. The conference emphasized our need to refuel our own gas tank if we want energy to keep on going.

Keith Mitchell talked about the armor that he wore as a pro football player, not just the external pads and helmet but how he couldn’t afford to show any pain or injury or any sign of weakness. He definitely did not want to appear vulnerable.  Keith never left the playing field, or nurtured any wound, until an injury that almost killed him.  He crushed his c2-C4 vertebrae causing paralysis and had to be carried off the field.  It wasn’t until he let go of his armor and allowed himself to be vulnerable that he discovered his true inner self and power.

At the preshow, I led a yoga dance where we started with the song Amazing Grace and practiced deep belly breathing to stimulate our parasympathetic nervous system, the counter to fight or flight. We then danced to Colbie Caillat’s song “TRY” to remind ourselves to love and accept ourselves instead of the “no pain, no gain” mentality. Then we danced to Let it Grow so we  could practice PLAY and get out of our head and into our body.

For me it was such a thrill to see 3-400 people all smiling and moving together. 

In his keynote Keith observed how many people hesitated in the beginning, looking around, afraid to look silly and spoke about how this is a type of armor we all carry. It is important to practice play and be vulnerable to show our authentic self.

I may have fit in in High School, but now I am advocating for us all to rethink and question everything. Dare to be different. Dare to be vulnerable. When you are working in complementary and alternative medicine, it takes courage to step out of your comfort zone.  When my daughter chose an integrative and complementary approach to her cancer treatment that took courage.  It took courage for me to write and publish my book and to announce our current medical model is broken and our need for a new wellness model that is focused on self love and self care.   It takes courage for BB&R Wellness Consulting to put on the Achieving Optimal Health Conference every year.  It took courage for Keith Mitchell to tell the world that yoga and meditation and vulnerability are paths to strength. 

Thank you fellow warriors. 

As I said in my book, the paradox is that we must stop the war against ourselves. We need to foster love, not war and paradoxically, we need to fight for it.  The weapon we need is love and I has to start with self-love. This is not an ego driven love, but a deeper self-love and respect—a true knowing that we are OK just as we are. It is a rediscovery that we are all worthy of self love.  Self–love is not selfish, it is the most giving love of all.

Carpe Diem

Friday, October 10, 2014

Writing a book is like birthing a baby

Yes, it’s true…writing a book is like birthing a baby.

First you are full of excitement, pride and bravado. The word virile comes to mind.  Next comes all the fear and insecurity. Do I know enough? Will I be a good parent? Will the book be good enough? Can I really do this?  Holy %&! What have I gotten myself into? Clearly, we don’t know, what we don’t know.

To quote another analogy… Our children are our spiritual guides.  I certainly have found this to be true.  They are our biggest joy, our biggest challenge, our biggest pride, and sometimes our biggest pain.  They touch us in our hearts.  They trigger our emotions. We feel and act so vulnerable. With our children, we can play games, we can be silly, and we can be real.

Writing can also be a spiritual guide.  I felt like I had to write this book. Not because many people were asking me to write a recipe book. Truth is, I didn’t want to write a recipe book.  First of all, that is too exacting for me and I believe recipes, like rules, are meant to be broken. Truth be told, I really do not like to plan and shop and take time away from my work to do so. That’s why my recipes are flexible, quick and easy. However, I have learned, like my clients, that preparing nourishing foods can become a spiritual practice in itself. It provides time to connect with your feelings, how food affects your body and to gratefully acknowledge the miracle of whole foods.

I felt like I had to write this book when my daughter collapsed in my arms in a department store. I prayed like I have never prayed before. I promised God that I would do anything, that I would tell our story.  “Please God, just let her be OK”.  I knew in my heart that I needed to write.  And then, of course periods of mortal fear and self-doubt rear its ugly head…that is the challenge of meeting any goal.

So instead of just a recipe book, this is a book about love, fear, courage and sacrifice.  Sprinkled in with a few of my favorite recipes.

Writing, like raising children, has offered me discipline, even when I didn’t feel like having it. More importantly, it has given me a mirror and a deeper connection with myself. It drew out what was truly important to me and gave me much needed focus.  It afforded me the time to think about, create and put on paper, my seven steps to optimal health and wellness.  I wanted to demonstrate the miraculous transformation that is possible, when you give yourself the gift of self-love and focus on your personal growth and development. I wanted to explain the “how” and the “why”.

This has been an emotional journey, the perfectionist in me feels like it will never be done, never be good enough.  My friend, Dr. Elizabeth English says, “The best book is a done book” and it is time to get this story out. So I submit to you my first edition, what has been a labor of love, with love and gratitude, with all of its raw content, and all of my vulnerability for pre-order here:

An Invitation to BEGIN:
Friday, I shared with you my daughters good news in Celebrate today, Just Breathe, blog and introduced my seven steps to optimal health and wellness with this invitation on the first step (which is to begin with an honest personal assessment.)

Won’t you BEGIN by joining me  for a Kickstart to Wellness? Starting Thursday, October 16th at 7pm.  If you cannot make the call, don’t worry, you can listen to the replay, but only if you register. 

Today I would like to share more on the first of seven steps to optimal health.  I began last week’s blog with this picture:

STEP ONE - BEGIN: Make a commitment and invest in yourself. Take an honest personal assessment and inventory.

How to become the leader of your life? Take action. To be the most effective leader, you have to have control of your health! Make the same investment in you that you have made in your family, friends, and career. Give yourself the gift of self-care; find new ways to energize and empower yourself.

First, take an honest personal assessment and inventory. Understand your WHY. I begin my discovery calls with my clients with the following questions:

What would it mean to you to be the best that you can be? What is your biggest obstacle or challenge? What have you tried—what has been successful and what has failed? How do you want to feel and see yourself in three months, six months, and one year from now as a result of working together?

We then look at your entire health history. Many falsely believe that because chronic illness runs in families that it must be genetic and that we are doomed. I used to believe this too as a practicing nurse when I took health histories. Fortunately, the study of epigenetics, or the study of the expression of genes has proven that genes can be turned on and off through diet and lifestyle changes. Do you know of any identical twins where one looks older and has more chronic disease than the other? This is an example of identical genes yielding different outcomes. This exemplifies the power to heal from within.  Again, don’t beat yourself up; instead get inspired to explore new options.

Give to yourself so you can give to others. Give yourself the same investment that you have put into your family, friends, and career so that you can continue to give to others.

Commit to small obtainable steps, one to three small “digestible bites” every two weeks and then celebrate your success.

Set SMART Goals:

         Specific & Simple
         Measureable & Motivational
         Actionable & Accountable
         Relevant & Realistic
         Time Bound

Savvy Secret: A first SMART goal might be to simply keep track of what you are eating in a diary. If you did that and nothing else, you are likely to lose weight. Simply being conscious of what you are eating and more importantly how you are feeling before and after eating can have a transformational affect.

One reason I believe that it was hard for my daughter to initially stay on the diet regimen was that we really did not fully understand why the diets and supplements were recommended, nor did we know how to keep it up. For most of us, food preparation is a new skill. When Dana told me the diet was unsustainable, I said, “Then we have to make it sustainable!” We needed to really understand why the diet was important and find simple ways to integrate this into an active, social thirty-year-olds schedule. Her life depends on it. This was my motivation for starting the cooking classes and for reading and studying so much about the thyroid, gluten, and hormones, and the lymphatic system and cancer, causes and cures.

This is where personal responsibility and a mind shift in thinking must occur. You have to understand the powerful connection between food and your mood and health. What nutrients are missing from the standard American diet (SAD) and how and why to heal the gut in order to heal your immune system.

Savvy Secret: Knowing your why is imperative to keeping you motivated towards positive change.

What is your WHY? Please take time to think and to share.

Carpe Diem, Lisa

How do you become your own best doctor?

How do you become your own best doctor? 
How do you discover hidden undiagnosed food sensitivities? 
Join me on my FREE Call Thursday night as I show you the answers.

I am reading Dr Gary Kaplan’s book, Total Recovery and he so beautifully explains why, one of my dear clients who had suffered chronic back pain and endured nine surgeries in a decade, after my program, for the first time began to feel like she was “healing from the inside out”.   When you discover how to lower inflammation and toxicity you can allow your body to do what it does naturally—that is to heal.

To quote Dr. Kaplan, “Food directly affects our nervous systems.  If we are eating the wrong things, it can show up in any number of effects: depression, migraines, anxiety, peripheral neuropathy, panic attacks or pain, among others.”

He eloquently describes how there are multiple metabolic pathways in the body affected by different types of inflammation.   Allergies affect one pathway (IgE), food intolerances by another (IgG) and celiac disease by others (IgA, IgG and anti-tTG)  as well as bacterial  and viruses causing inflammation through different routes.   Just like a fire, one cause can ignite flames all over the body.

This is why when you begin to lower your inflammation then everything from allergies and irritable bowel to brain fog, autism and fibromyalgia begin to improve.

Food is an easy first step in solving this puzzle and can offer surprisingly immediate relief.  In fact, the best way to identify your own food sensitivities is through an elimination diet.  The great news is that my one hundred plus, easy recipes, meal plans and shopping guides show you how.  My twenty one day Kickstart to Wellness Program is the easiest, least expensive way for you to become your own best doctor.  You will discover how your body will let you know what is good for you and what is not. 

It really doesn't matter what I say, or your doctor says, what matters is how you feel.  Do you want more energy and to be able to handle stress with greater ease?  Do you want more joy and peace in your life?  Then you are my ideal client.

Please join me on my free webinar to ask all of your questions around fall cleansing and/or 21 day Kickstart to Wellness Program.  Click here to Register: FREE Webinar Q&A

Send me your questions; I love to hear from you.  Better yet, schedule a fifteen-minute discovery call to see if we are a good fit for each other. 

Most importantly, Carpe Diem! You only have this moment and this day to live life to its fullest.


For those of you who have been thinking of working with me, sign up for my 21 Day Kickstart to Wellness Program now. This is the least expensive option to get a whole lot of support from me. You will get recipes, a guidebook, a private Facebook page, a 30-minute call with me before starting and weekly group webinars with Q&A.  You will learn a lot and you will be surrounded with others with the same questions, challenges and concerns.

Friday, October 3, 2014

Celebrate today! Just Breathe

Today is a day for a deep breath and a deep sigh of relief as my daughter Dana just made it to two years of being cancer free, a feat that her Doctor gave her only a 10% success rate.  I wrote about this in my upcoming book, about the power of the placebo effect and equally the power of the nocebo effect as well as the fear that keeps us sick, stuck and unable to meet our goals.   Dana wrote about this today in her blog titled, “Just Breathe” in 

Here is an excerpt of what I wrote in my book about this fear:

Fear is the cancer. It is incapacitating and nonproductive. It infects the mind and the body. Treatment should not be fear based. It should be empowering. Fear can keep you from taking personal responsibility and from doing your own research. We all want someone to tell us what to do, to give us the pill, the magic fix. In order to fully heal, you must overcome the fear and take personal responsibility through compassion and self-love. You must learn to respond to your body with love and compassion, instead of the automatic response to react out of fear. This is especially important for healing, as I will describe in this book.

I am proud and relieved to say that Dana is taking personal responsibility for her life and has learned the importance of prioritizing self-care and of following her passions.  Most importantly, Dana believes that she has the power to heal from within and this empowerment leads to optimal health.

Here is another excerpt:

STEP ONE - BEGIN: Make a commitment and invest in yourself. Take an honest personal assessment and inventory.

How to become the leader of your life? Take action. To be the most effective leader, you have to have control of your health! Make the same investment in you that you have made in your family, friends, and career. Give yourself the gift of self-care; find new ways to energize and empower yourself.

Won’t you BEGIN next week by joining me on a Free webinar and conference call for a Kickstart to Wellness?  Do you have questions that you want answered?  Then click here to register and get the webinar link: FREE Webinar Q&A

Have a fabulous weekend & Carpe Diem!