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Wednesday, January 27, 2010

TechnoGrannyShow 12-14-09, Improving Health with Plant Based Foods

Macrobiotics, Improving Health with Plant Based Diets

WHO I AM: I am a natural health food counselor and cooking instructor. I have been

studying natural foods and macrobiotics for over 15 years. My business is called COOKING GREEN WITH ROSEMARY. I give cooking classes and counsel people on how to improve their diet so they feel better. Some people have serious diseases like cancer, heart disease and diabetes, but others just want to feel better.

MACROBIOTICS: What does it mean?

Refers to a plant based diet, consisting of grains like brown rice, barley, millet, couscous, whole grain breads and pastas. It also consists of beans like lentils, black beans, pinto beans, split peas as well as the soybean products like tofu, tempeh and miso. It includes vegetables and fruits, organically and locally grown as much as possible. Macrobiotics has been widely acclaimed for its ability to reverse cancer, but its also very effective for every health condition from allergies, acne and asthma to heart disease, diabetes as well as psychological diseases like depression and schizophrenia. One of my favorite books is A Personal Peace by David Briscoe. It can be used alone or with any alternative therapy.


The word actually means “long life” and was given that name by a Japanese gentleman, who called himself George Ohsawa. George had tuberculosis in the early 1920’s. His whole family had died of it and he was given only a few months to live. He reverted back to the diet of his ancestors, which was basically brown rice, miso soup and vegetables. He healed himself in 10 days. He studied the food of traditional cultures, including the Greek culture and liked Hippocrates very much, who said “Let food be thy medicine and medicine thy food”. Hippocrates believed in using food first before using “the sword” or what we would call ‘surgery’. Hippocrates lived to be over 100 and called himself macrobiotic. Ohsawa decided to call this new way or eating, which was based on the natural way of eating of traditional peoples, macrobiotic.

One of Ohsawa’s students, Michio Kushi came to this country on Thanksgiving day, 1950 and started teaching first in NY, then in Boston. He has written more than 20 books on the relationship between diet and disease, of which the best known is probably The Cancer Prevention Diet. Since then, thousands of people have healed themselves of every disease on the macrobiotic diet, especially cancer. Just about every type of cancer is described in this book, as well as the cause and cure. A personal healing anecdote is also included in every chapter. Many people come to macrobiotics as a last resort, after having been told they only have 2-3 months to live.


I was brought up in Boston. My mother had just died from breast cancer 2 years prior when a friend took me to hear Michio Kushi speak. Kushi said “They can take out the cancer, but often times it will come back unless you change your diet.” I had seen that with my own mother: first it was one breast, then the other and 10 years later it was through out her whole body. Unfortunately, she succumbed to the disease.

This was during the Vietnamese War and many young people wanted peace. I was thinking of joining the Peace Corps. Kushi was hoping to attract young intellectuals from Harvard and MIT, but instead got a bunch of hippies, who thought they could get “high” by eating brown rice. He told us if we really wanted peace, we first had to change our own blood quality. Food makes our blood and the blood bathes every cell of the body, including the brain. Our behavior, our thinking, our feelings are all influenced by what we eat.

This had a tremendous impact on me. I followed the macrobiotic diet for a few years, but I was young and wanted to travel, so I got away from it for awhile.

After many years of working in the airline business, I developed migraines, eczema and chronic fatigue syndrome.

One day in 1994, I was lying on the couch with a terrible headache and I decided I couldn’t do this anymore. I went to the Kushi Summer Conference in Vermont and changed my diet over night. I continued flying for another 14 years and in the meantime continued studying macrobiotics. I healed myself of everything and was certified by the Strengthening Health Institute of Philadelphia in 2001 to give cooking classes and counsel people, fulfilling a life long dream to help others heal.

MAIN DIFFERENCES BETWEEN MACROBIOTICS AND OTHER PLANT BASED DIETS: theory of yin and yang. All phenomena, according to macrobiotics, contains these two energies. Some examples are night and day, black and white, man and woman, love and hate, war and peace, etc. Food also contains these two opposing, but complimentary energies. Some foods are warming and strengthening….others more cooling and relaxing. In a bar there’s usually very salty chips, nuts or pretzels to go with alcohol. If we eat too much meat, chicken and salt, we’ll be attracted to sugary desserts like cake, cookies, candy or alcohol. Macrobiotics advises eating in the middle of the spectrum…grains, beans, veggies and fruits and avoiding the extreme foods.

We also eat in accordance with the seasons….in other words, more baking, stewing and pressure cooking in the winter. More salads, fruit and lighter cooking in the summer.


My business is called Cooking Green With Rosemary. I counsel both people who have serious disease like cancer as well as people who don’t want to get cancer, but want to stay healthy! Consultations take about 1 hour and a half and include a complete food inventory, a discussion of your goals and lifestyle as well as any particular health concerns.

Recommendations are given in the areas of diet, exercise and lifestyle. Recipes and natural home remedies are included for your particular condition.

Cooking classes are a lot of fun! They’re small and interactive, between 8-12 people. We’re all learning together. They’re held once a month usually on the 2nd or 3rd Saturday at 10am in Sewickley.
 or call:412-741-5167.

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