Thursday, February 27, 2014

Rain - A Thought for the Day!

It is finally raining here in sunny California and we are all feeling a bit of relief. I did not realize just how bad the drought was until my husband and I traveled from So. CA to Oregon last month. The state looks like a dust bowl. From June 2012 to June of 2013 we received 4.99 inches of rain. and only 2 inches of rain in some places. Our normal yearly rainfall here in So. CA. is 12 -13 inches. Still not a lot of rain to brag about but it keeps us out of drought conditions.

As I am listening to the rain run off our roof, I realize we never had the gutters cleaned, which means it will be pouring over the sides of the gutters soon. Not sure why it is human nature to wait until damage control is needed to see a problem. But as I continue to work with people who have medical issues or are dealing with a loved one with medical issues, damage control is the running theme. People seem to get too busy to notice that something is off until the "off" is running over the sides of the gutters instead of down the allotted drain.

Please stop a minute and take inventory of your health. Notice if something is "off." If it is start looking for answers now, before you also start hearing the sounds of rain pouring over the sides of your gutters.

Stay Healthy and Happy

Monday, February 24, 2014

It is Official - There are Now 2 Authors in the Family!

My brother Michael has combined his love for photography and graphic arts to create these beautifully illustrated children's books.
He has also been instrumental in helping me launch my gluten-free handbooks and now he has launched 2 of his 3 children's books.

Together we have blended our passion and skills to create our books.

Enjoy and thank you for your continued support!



Saturday, February 22, 2014

Living in the Moment

Five years ago I suffered from a concussion. The concussion symptoms lasted 18 months. I could not tolerate noise, light or any kind of stimulation. I was not able to go to a grocery store or be around too many people. The headaches were constant. 

I spent the first month or so laying on my bed with the windows and door shut. I took a pillow case and folded it in four the long way and placed it over my eyes to prevent any light from shining through. 

I spent hours quietly laying there and BEING.

My short term memory was affected, so I really did not worry about what needed to be done or who I needed to talk to. 

Though this sounds terrible to some people and many people  have asked me how I could have laid there for hours not doing anything - the truth is it was one of the best gifts I have ever received. 

The gift of the MOMENT!  I truly spent days upon days just living in the MOMENT. 

For anyone who knew me before, they can tell you I did not have patience nor did I sit still. I was always moving and doing. I even mediated while I was walking. 

So this stillness was a very new thing for me.

Today I am cleared minded, memory back and working well. I am busy creating and doing. BUT in a much different way then before. I work in a rhythm I did not have before. I stop to spend time with those I love and I am clear on the priorities in my life. I love living in the NOW.            
                   This moment - this place - this time. 

A.A. Miline said it best. 

Thank you to The Gratitude Habit and Zen to Zany for posting this on Facebook. It has inspired me to share my story.  

Thursday, February 20, 2014

How To Build A Raw Garlic Sandwich

I was recently reminded of the many health benefits(see below) raw garlic has. I was working with Dr. Cynthia Costa the other day and I mentioned I had a mild sore throat. She suggested I eat some raw garlic. If you have ever tried raw garlic, you know it has serious kick to it. 
Dr. Costa suggested spreading some raw garlic on bread and eating it.
I figured if we were both going to reek of garlic then why not give it a try.

So I rose to the challenge and made us raw garlic sandwiches. 

Step 1. I toasted Rising Hearts, GF Oat Bread.You can use any GF bread. 

Step 2: Peel and mince a large clove of garlic

Step 3: Spread the minced garlic on the toasted bread

Step 4: Add vegetables and condiments of your choice to blend with the garlic& flavor. I have  used cherry tomatoes, avocado, cucumbers, sauteed spinach,
           olive tapenade and cilantro hummus.I also put a thin slice of goat 
           cheese on top. 

Step 5: Bite into the sandwich with caution. Too big a bite will mean a large bite of garlic.           

Step 6: When talking with other people ALWAYS remember you probably reek of garlic. 


                                                                   photo by

Garlic produces a chemical called allicin, which is what makes it smell BUT is also what gives it the health benefits. When supplements companies make odorless garlic it is believed  that some of the health benefits are removed along with the odor.

Raw garlic has been scientifically proven to help:

  • Fight viruses
  • Eliminate  infections 
  • Healing Hemorrhoids 
  • Preventing and Treating Heart Disease
  • Preventing and Treating Cancers
  • Many more health benefits -see links below

Green Med Info: Has a complete list of health benefits of raw garlic as well as the research to back it up.  
WebMd has a thorough article on the benefits of raw garlic

Sunday, February 16, 2014

Life Is A Gift - So Live It Now!

My friends range from little Bree, 2 years old, to several friends in their early 70's. I rarely look at them and think about their age or how long a life they may live. But this morning is different. Ralph Waite (Papa Walton) died this week, at the age of 85. Richard, my husband, commented that it appeared he had a good long life.That comment has been sitting with me ever since. 

What is a good long life? 

For the 1st time in my life, I have stopped to contemplate the thought that I have far fewer years in front of me than behind me. I am not afraid of death.I have known death most of my life. I come from a large Italian family and can't remember a time my mom and dad weren't going to someone's funeral.  I remember the 1st death that hit me hard and forced me to understand what death means to those left behind.I lost my 1st friend, Lawrence, to cancer at the age of 10. His death has had a profound impact on how I live my life.

This post is not about death, IT IS ABOUT HOW WE DECIDE TO SPEND THE REST OF OUR LIVES. What kind of quality of life do you want to live?  What decisions can you make to improve your quality of life? It is about putting aside old ideas and embracing new ones. It is about asking yourself what one thing can I change today to be the best "ME" I can be. And it is about asking yourself that question every single day.

I have known the answer to that for months but have struggled to act on it. I love to work out. The gym is a place of solace for me. I feel empowered and strong when I work out. Yet I allowed an emotional experience to get to me which in turn effected my health. I had to stopped working out for a while. The while has turned into months. The questions is, why would I waste another day not feeling strong and powerful?

Our Health is KEY to being the best person we can be. For me a good long life means being emotionally happy, spiritually connected and physically healthy, so that I can spend quality time with the people I love. A quality life for me also means reaching out and being there for others when they need it, so I better be there for me 1st.

What do you need to do to get healthier?

Is it...?

  • Eating healthier
  • Choosing Whole foods verse Processed Foods
  • Reducing or eliminating sugar
  • Learning how to eat healthy fats vs unhealthy fats
  • Eliminating gluten and/or dairy to improve your digestion/health
  • Doing a cleanse to heal your body
  • Finding ways to reduce the medication you are on, by looking for alternatives.
  • Finding a spiritual path 
  • Getting counseling so you can heal emotional issue
  • Talking with someone you trust to figure out what is holding you back
  • Exercising (whether that is walking around the block or going to the gym) start now.

              Whatever it is please do not waste another minute! 
                             Life is a gift,  so live it NOW!

Saturday, February 8, 2014

Sayer Ji's Blog GreenMedInfo is Worth Reading

I recently read an article by Sayer Ji, founder of, blog. I am extremely impressed with the work he is doing. I have followed up on the links he provides to support his theories and so far they have been accurate. 

The article I can't get out of my mind is about the possibility that 
"wheat consumption cuts off blood flow to the brain." Sayer discusses the research being done on schizophrenia. This research spans the last 60 years!

In another article he discusses the effects of gluten on Parkinson Disease.

Sayer Ji is worth following.

 GreenMedInfo Banner

GreenMedInfo Blog
GreenMedInfo Facebook

Thursday, February 6, 2014

Dr. Costa and Marian Z Geringer Will be Speaking at Stowell's

 Join us Saturday, March 8, 2014 at 9:30 a.m.
The “Hidden Effects” of Common Foods on Learning, Attention, and Behavior

Special Guests Dr. Cynthia Costa and Marian Geringer share with
Parents and Professionals

  • Which Common Food Ingredients are the BIGGEST Roadblocks to learni
  • (HINT – Sugar is only one of them!)
  • Can Changing Diet Take a Student from Failure to As?
  •  Why Can Some Kids Eat ANYTHING While Others Have to be on a Very Strict Diet? 
  • Diet and nutrition play a HUGE role in the success of many students. These factors are often overlooked because they are subtle and they don't affect every child the same way. 

    Dr. Costa is an expert in helping families look at which nutritional factors are interfering with behavior and learning; then planning a strategy to overcome the issues.

    Marian Geringer, Gluten-Free Life coach helps families navigate the practical application of making dietary changes.

    Date: Saturday March 8, 2014
    Time: 9:30 a.m. – 11:30 a.m.
    Place: Stowell Learning Center
    15192 Central Ave. Chino, CA 91710
    Reserve your spot today. Go to: or call 909-598-2482

    SLC Chino • 15192 Central Ave., Chino, CA 91710 • (909) 598-2482
    SLC Irvine • 1150 Main St. Suite C, Irvine, CA 92614 • (949) 477-4133


Healthly Choice Chicken with Rice Soup (microwavable) is Recalled

"The microwavable "Healthy Choice Chicken with Rice" soups that are being recalled are labeled 14-oz (397g) with a Best By data of "JUN092015," located at the bottom of the bowl. ConAgra is working hard to remove all misbranded products off the shelves."

Inside the container of soup is not rice but wheat pasta. The food is not contaminated or uneatable, it is just not safe for someone on a gluten-free diet. 

Interactive Checklist of Symptoms

The Celiac Diseases Foundation has just published a interactive checklist of symptoms for people to complete and take to their doctors.

There are over 300 symptoms related to Celiac Disease and 140 related to Non Celiac Gluten Sensitivity. For many it takes years of suffering before they are accurately diagnosed.

As The Celiac Disease Foundation states, "Most people with celiac disease are undiagnosed.This checklist helps you document if you or your child have any of the common symptoms or conditions. Share your checklist responses with your physician to determine if you or your child should have the celiac disease panel blood test."
"This checklist is NOT a self-diagnosis tool. Diagnosis of celiac disease requires a celiac disease panel blood test and an endoscopic biopsy of your small intestine.
You MUST be eating gluten in order for the celiac disease panel test to be accurate as it measures your body’s reaction to gluten. A proper diagnosis can only be made by a physician."

It is time to take charge of your own health. 

Wednesday, February 5, 2014

Sometimes the Feeling of Gratitude Can be Overwhelming!

I had the opportunity to do a talk for a support group called Mom's in Charge. The talk required a power point. I prepared by first doing an outline and then building the power point. I spent several days creating it.
Part of the talk was about my  family and my journey to health.

I started writing about how my family had to go gluten-free over 4 years ago then I started reflecting on the past. I realized that this journey to health spans over 22 years and started when my daughter was 2 years old. The steps happened a little at a time. Each step included an education and then a transition to adapt to a new way of eating or a new supplement or alternative medicine.  Many times it was subtle and was barely noticed and other times it took on a more obvious face.

What I didn't notice was the big picture this journey was painting, until now.

Even more powerful then writing about this journey and rediscovering the steps, was actually sharing it out loud. It has had a profound impact on me. I am just now letting the impact settle in.

I am very grateful for every step I have taken!
I am grateful that we are now gluten-free, soy-free and dairy-free because we are healing!
I am extremely grateful for Dr. Cynthia Costa!
I am most grateful for God and the guidance I have received over the years. 

Monday, February 3, 2014

Gluten-Free Girl Scout Cookies Are The Real Thing!

Goodbye Gluten! New Gluten Free Chocolate Chip Shortbread Cookies are the First Gluten Free Girl Scout Cookie

At ABC Bakers, we believe that everyone should be able to support the Girl Scout Cookie Program.  So we’ve developed a delicious new bite size Girl Scout cookie that’s 100% gluten free – and we’re welcoming a whole group of people to the cookie sale.  ABC Bakers will be working with a select group of Girl Scout councils to pilot the new cookie as part of the 2013-14 Cookie Sale.

About the Cookie: Gluten Free Goodness

Since it’s estimated that three million people have problems when they eat foods that contain gluten*, ABC and our council partners expect this cookie to be a huge success. Our new bite size Gluten Free Chocolate Chip Shortbread cookie:
  • Is made with real chocolate chips and real butter
  • Contains no artificial flavors, no artificial colors, no
    high fructose corn syrup, no palm oil, and no
    hydrogenated oils
  • Is available in a 5 ounce resealable foil pouch with
    12 pouches per case
Do the Gluten Free Chocolate Chip Shortbread cookies meet the FDA’s 20ppm limit?
Yes. Our Gluten Free Chocolate Chip Shortbread cookies actually meet the 5ppm hurdle set by Celiac Sprue Association (, which is 75% lower than the FDA’s 20ppm proposed limit. The Celiac Sprue Association Recognition Seal Program is more stringent than the FDA guidelines. Additionally, our cookies are certified by the Gluten Free Certification Organization ( Products carrying the GF logo represent unmatched reliability for meeting strict gluten-free standards and GFCO is the leading gluten-free certification program in the world.
To find more information on the nutrition for the Gluten Free Chocolate Chip Shortbread Cookie, click here. For frequently asked questions regarding the new gluten free cookie, please visit our FAQs.
Go to the website to find out where they are being sold.