Health & Vitality … Naturally !   – Issue # 1 of ‘Friday Gurgaon’published on Aug 27 2011

The Health Connection
By Jaspal Bajwa – RHN(Canadian School of Natural Nutrition)

Urban life can and should be associated with a better quality of life. Yet it is increasingly associated with early onset and rising incidence of chronic lifestyle disorders. The resultant loss of the capacity to enjoy life to the fullest, despite expensive medical interventions is sad. But it does not have to be so. In these series, let us together discover the simple steps we can take to regain control over our lives.
First we must learn to recognize ‘dis-ease’. It all starts innocently enough. Perhaps a few extra kilos around the waist. Or persistent pain and fatigue. Or a mild allergy. Endless cups of tea/coffee or gallons of sugary soft drinks prove to be little more than temporary fixes. Stress-induced binge eating does not help either. Junk foods, sedentary lives and compromised sleep patterns all add up to a heady cocktail. Elevated BP(blood pressure) sets in and the journey down ‘the slippery slope’ starts. It is then left to the spin of the roulette wheel to assign chronic disorders like diabetes, cardio-vascular compromise, a stroke or cancer.
The key question to ask is whether this is a trap from which there is no escape? Or can we through wise choices in fact take control of our own well-being?

Tip of the week:
The body’s own ability to heal itself should never be under-estimated. It can be activated by simple acts like hearty laughter, regular exercise, and going for walks. These activities release endorphins in our brain which strengthen our immune system and enhance a sense of well-being.

Nature’s Wonder Food of the week: Ginger or Zingiber officinale
For centuries, Ginger has been well known as an aid to digestion and to help prevent ulcers. It has a tonic effect on cardiac health and has important anti-inflammatory properties which alleviate arthritis. It is also beneficial for treating travel sickness and nausea and for menstrual cramps. Fresh ginger juice is an excellent detoxifying agent and cleanser for the body. Its warming and immune-boosting properties make it a reliable cold and flu treatment. Chewing of the root can ease sore throat- can also be added to tea. Ginger’s name is derived from Sanskrit singabera(like deer’s antlers).Over half of the world production comes from India. Ginger is a good source of potassium, magnesium, copper, manganese and vitamin B6.

Health & Vitality … Naturally !

For education purposes only; consult a healthcare practitioner for medical conditions


Over 60% of our body is water ( and in babies it is 75%)  … yet less than 1% of the world supply is available to man to support life. And, even this meager quantity is fast depleting !

The story of ‘civilization’ is all about man’s relationship with water …all the major commercial centers have almost always been located near ports.The rise and fall of great cities has been explained by the presence or absence of adequate water.

The April 2010 issue of ‘National Geographic’ magazine is all about ‘Water’. This theme is pertinent given the central role water plays on our beautiful ‘blue planet’…. making this issue of the magazine a collector’s item. In addition to the spectacular photos from all over the world …there are very interesting facts  :

eg. the cost of water is rising in all the cities of the world … per 100 gallons it ranges from a low of $ 0.00 or 0.01 in Kolkatta & Karachi to a high of $ 1.85 in San Diego & $ 3.50 in Gent.

In Canada it ranges between $ 0.87 ( Ontario) and 1.32 ( Alberta) …from 2002 to 2007, water rates in Canada increased an average of 58%.

As the water table and glaciers feeding the rivers of the world are receding… there is no option but for us but to

a) learn & implement ‘conservation’ / ‘re-cycling’ techniques as our very survival depends on it
b) improve technology to ‘de-salinate’ and tap into the 97.5% which is ‘salt-water’

While much has been done to raise awareness and take action on energy and associated carbon footprint issues, the same cannot be said about water, despite its pressing challenges and their consequences to our very survival.

It is well known that man  can survive for weeks without food ; he can not survive without water for more than a few days. Water is the primary component of all our bodily fluids and is involved in almost all functions of the body.

Although water is the single most important nutrient of life ( after air) ;the exact role of water in maintaining our health has not been fully understood … as evidenced by the conflicting recommendations on the ‘Daily Intake’ recommended. As a result , most of us end up consuming either too little or too much. To make matters worse, there is incomplete knowledge about the source of water and its  purity and mineral content, which can can vary dramatically from region to region.

It is time … we gain as much information as we can … and start making the changes to our daily intake of water ( and water containing foods) in sync with the weather and activity levels of each one of us.  At a community level, each one of us should do what we can towards  water conservation / rain-water harvesting  and re-cycling … let us make each drop count !

Suggested reading :

Chapter # 1 : Water

from “Staying Healthy with Nutrition” – By Dr. Elson M Haas

I just joined the Registered Holistic Practitioner Program at the Canadian School of Nutrition. The text book we are using has this very informative chapter… stongly recommended !

If you go to Dr. Haas’s  site …you will find a lot more information …

Some recent articles in the press

Drink Up! Seven crucial reasons why staying hydrated should be top of mind this cold and flu season.

National Post Published: Wednesday, February 17, 2010

Read more:

Dehydration of as little as 2% loss of body weight results in impaired physiological and performance responses. New research indicates that fluid consumption in general and water consumption in particular can have an effect on the risk of urinary stone disease; cancers of the breast, colon, and urinary tract; childhood and adolescent obesity; mitral valve prolapse; salivary gland function; and overall health in the elderly.

Water is the single most important nutrient of life. Without water, no metabolic and physiological processes within the body can occur. Water is necessary for the movement of nutrients to the cells, removal of waste products from these cells, mineral or acid/base balance, protection of nervous system, lubrication of joints and body temperature control

On March 1, people all over the sub-continent of India celebrate the onset of spring by joyfully sprinkling colours of all hues  …and embracing each other in the sheer bonhomie of ‘fellow humanity’. A few days earlier , the Chinese New Year similarly heralded new beginnings. In  the western hemisphere, each day brings us closer to a thawing of the snows …and getting back to sunny days.

While natural sunlight is literally as old as ‘life on our home planet’ … we are re-discovering the amazing benefits of this ‘miracle food’ in the last decade.

From 2005 onwards Vitamin D has been attracting a lot of medical attention ( see feature on Dr.Michael Hollick below). However, in the most recent 90 days … the flurry of articles on Vitamin D3 caught my attention. See 10 articles featured below.

It would seem the list of benefits of this nutrient is getting increasingly longer…regular intake of Vitamin D  can help prevent:

  • over 60% of all Cancers
  • Rickets
  • Osteoporosis
  • Heart disease ( especially important for people taking statin drugs …see featured article below)
  • Diabetes  ( improves insulin resistance and favourably affect Type 2 diabetes)
  • Hypertension
  • depression caused by SAD (seasonal affective disorder) and chronic pains / aches
  • deficiencies caused when taking Anti-Epileptic drugs
  • Common Cold and Influenza
  • for patients with chronic kidney dieseases
  • Autism
  • Inflammation  (anything ending in ‘itis’ …eg. arthritis, iritis, thyroiditis, pancreatitis)
  • Autoimmune Diseases  like  multiple sclerosis, psoriasis, scleroderma, rheumatoid arthritis, fibromyalgia, chronic fatigue syndrome and other similar indications
  • Melanoma – the most deadly form of skin cancer
  • Obesity

In this blog, I wanted to share all the recent articles that have caught my attention…hopefully you will find these useful and make your own choice on how you would want to ensure your ‘daily dose’ of this  critical ‘sunshine vitamin’ during the winter months when exposure to sun light goes down dramatically…and perhaps you will re-consider before using a ‘sun-block’ cream the next time.

To your health !


Featured recent news articles on “Vitamin D” selected by Jaspal

Article # 1

Vitamin D is Called the Sunshine Vitamin for Good Reason

Michael F. Holick, PhD, MD

Professor of Medicine, Physiology and Biophysics

Director of the General Clinical Research Center

Director of the Vitamin D, Skin and Bone Research Laboratory

Director, Biologic Effects of Light Research Center

Boston University Medical Center

The Vitamin D Solution — Dr. Holick’s New Book

Posted by admin on February 2, 2010

Dr. Holick’s new book The Vitamin D Solution is now available for pre-order!  The book will be coming out on 4/1/2010.  

 Article # 2

 Vitamin D: The D stands for ‘Do it!’

The sunshine vitamin outshines the others, especially in winter months

Evra Taylor Levy and Eddy Lang, Canwest News Service  Published: Thursday, February 25, 2010

Read more:

Quote: “Unfortunately, when subjected to rigorous scrutiny, most vitamins, when provided as supplements, are a disappointment. Although vitamins in a regular diet are indeed essential, the benefits of taking more has nearly always resulted in dashed hopes; the one exception to this appears to be vitamin D. Well established as being effective in cancer prevention and cancer survival, this edition of HealthWatch looks at vitamin D and fall prevention in elderly nursing home residents.” Unquote.

 Article # 3

When to pop your vitamin D? Any time, on its own or with food

It makes no difference how often you pop the pills, or whether you down them with food, experts says Martin Mittelstaedt

Environment Reporter — Globe and Mail Update Published on Thursday, Jan. 14, 2010 5:26PM EST Last updated on Thursday, Jan. 14, 2010 6:17PM EST

Quote “ “….nutrition experts say vitamin D is a forgiving vitamin, and many different approaches work equally well.

People can pop a lot at once, even a week’s worth at a single sitting, with no adverse effects. And unlike the other fat-soluble vitamins, A, E and K, the sunshine vitamin is absorbed well without food, so it can be taken any time.”Unquote

Article # 4

Do Statin Drugs Cause Vitamin D Deficiency?

Friday, January 08, 2010 by: E. Huff, staff writer

Quote: 1/8/2010 – (NaturalNews) Many in the medical profession are beginning to recognize that people who take cholesterol-lowering statin drugs are becoming vitamin D-deficient. Cholesterol is required by the body to synthesize vitamin D and statin drugs are responsible..” Unquote.

Article # 5

More Evidence Supports the Importance of Vitamin D in Heart Disease Prevention

Thursday, December 24, 2009 by: Marek Doyle, citizen journalist

 Article # 6

Nutrition victory: Cancer doctors begin prescribing vitamin D as part of cancer therapy

Wednesday, December 02, 2009 by: E. Huff, staff writer

Article # 7

Vitamin D prevents diabetes, improves insulin sensitivity, say multiple studies

Tuesday, December 01, 2009 by: S. L. Baker, features writer

 Article # 8

Test Your Knowledge of Vitamins and Minerals

The August issue of alive magazine focuses on the A-Z of supplements. Find out if you know which foods provide you with the most nutrients and where you might be missing out.

 Article # 9


Vitamin D -A Physician Separates Truth From Hype

September 2007

By Zoltan P. Rona, M.D., M.Sc.

Quote” “This cancer preventive property of vitamin D was no big news to world experts and researchers who have been touting the numerous benefits of the vitamin for well over a decade.  The medical profession and its various antiquated societies are, unfortunately, far behind in applying scientific data to clinical health concerns. It’s a nice gesture on their part to recommend 1100 IU of vitamin D a day to prevent cancer, but it’s far from enough. Current research indicates that the figure for cancer prevention should be closer to 10,000 IU daily.

Vitamin D is really not a vitamin but a steroid hormone precursor that plays a major role in many diseases. It is created under the skin by ultraviolet light and is found in few foods commonly consumed by most Canadians. Vitamin D deficiency or insufficiency (sub-optimal levels) plays a role in causing seventeen types of cancer (especially breast, prostate and colon) as well as heart disease, stroke, hypertension, autoimmune diseases like multiple sclerosis, diabetes, depression (especially seasonal affective disorder), chronic pain, fibromyalgia, osteoarthritis, osteoporosis, muscle weakness, muscle wasting, birth defects, and periodontal disease. 

Sun-phobia, a condition imposed on the population by sun-paranoid dermatologists, along with sunscreens and spending too much time indoors have all contributed to the vitamin D insufficiency problem. In fact, one of the worst offenders in creating vitamin D deficiency is the use of commercial sun blocks. And studies now indicate that while these may prevent sunburns, they do virtually nothing to prevent skin cancer.” Unquote

Article # 10

Fluffy, meet tofu

Growing number of vegan humans mean more veggie-only pets, too

DELLA HASSELLE, Columbia News Service, National Post  Published: Thursday, February 25, 2010

According to the Vegan Society, veganism is defined as a lifestyle that seeks to exclude the use of animals for food, clothing or other purposes. Properly planned vegan diets are healthful and have been found to satisfy people’s nutritional needs. Poorly planned vegan diets, however, can be low in calcium, iodine, vitamin B12 and vitamin D and must be supplemented with these nutrients. Vegans are estimated to be between 0.2 and 1.3 percent of the population.
Read more:

Article # 11

 Doctors start to include vitamin D in fight against cancer

With new studies showing the sun vitamin may slow come cancers, some physicians are eager to add it to treatment programs

Martin Mittelstaedt Environment Reporter

From Friday’s Globe and Mail Published on Thursday, Nov. 05, 2009 6:12PM EST Last updated on Wednesday, Nov. 11, 2009 2:27AM EST

 Quote “ In recent years, vitamin D has emerged as one of the most intriguing areas of cancer research. There have been numerous epidemiological studies finding that people with less of the nutrient circulating in their blood are at an elevated risk of developing cancer compared with those who have higher levels. The list of cancers for which this trend has been observed now numbers 18 and includes some of the most common such as colon cancer and breast cancer. Other research has found that those diagnosed with cancer in summer and fall – when blood levels of the vitamin are at seasonal highs because of sun exposure – have longer survival times than people whose cancers are detected in winter and spring.

Current Health Canada dietary recommendations for vitamin D range from 200 to 600 international units a day, depending on age, and were designed to promote bone health and not the far larger amounts being explored for therapeutic possibilities in cancer treatments.

Dr. O’Connor says some breast-cancer patients have such low stores of the nutrient that they need to embark on a crash course of taking up to 50,000 IU a week for several months to bring up their levels. Other patients whose starting levels aren’t so poor take a few thousand IU a day. She also monitors blood levels to make sure people don’t get too much” Unquote

Background reading:

Search query on ‘Vitamin D’ on the ‘Health Canada’ site:

As in previous years, our family sent out e.greetings anchored with visuals from Karam’s trip to New Zealand in March 2009…the accompanying inspirational quotes are shared in this blog-post :

“Year’s end is neither an end nor a beginning but a going on, with all the wisdom that experience can instil in us.  ~Hal Borland”


In the hopes of reaching the moon man fails to see the flowers that blossom at his feet.  ~Albert Schweitzer


“For last year’s words belong to last year’s language
And next year’s words await another voice.
And to make an end is to make a beginning.
T.S. Eliot, “Little Gidding”


“Good cheer is more than faith in the future,

it is gratitude for the past and joy in the present.”

All the best for 2010 !


Notes from the ‘Whole Life Expo’ : Metro Toronto Convention Center Nov 27-29

Well-Being & Holistic Nutrition :

  • Information overload …what can we do to cut through the clutter…tips shared…
  • Let us choose our food well. ‘Living’ foods vs. ‘Dead’ Foods … a huge difference
  • “Living Foods’ are those that are as close as possible to their original /natural state…what’s most important is the bio-availability of nutrients and the individual’s ability to assimilate the same ….
  • As Carolyne Dupont recounted in her talk: Enlightened Eating is a practical and inspirational approach to health. A plant-based diet that emphasizes whole, diverse, plant-based, local and living foods is ideal for the wellbeing of the body, the growth of the soul and the health of the planet. We can use awareness to transition to our best diet while balancing physical, mental, emotional and spiritual health to create a blessed life”
  • Let us better inform ourselves as consumers …differentiate between … ‘As claimed’ vs ‘As Available’ ingredients present in every food product
  • Jerry Zeifman reiterated …let us hone in on our metabolic type – each one of us is unique! Important to identify our ‘biochemical constituents’ …through first-hand experiments find out what foods suits …we must try and match the regimen to the metabolic-rate of our body…the only sure test …how do you feel 2-3 hours after having any food
  • Quality of food à Quality of cells that the body builds, as it regenerates itself …
  • Dr.Doug Cook‘s talk on Probiotics was extremely well presented …with useful tips on how to differentiate one product vs, another on the basis of the ‘specific strain’ of bacteria used…information which is not always clearly marked on product labels!
  • Of all the kitchen equipment on display …the most impressive was the ‘Vita-Mix’ high power (2 HP) Blender…an indispensible aid to a convenient of building in Raw Fruits & Vegetables in our daily diet regimen.

Well-Being and Lifestyle Choices:

  • Using lifestyle choices ( Veg / Raw / Yoga) as the ‘ground’ on which to build…restoring ‘balance’ ( wisdom of the Essanes) ; as shared by Drs. Miller and Carmos
  • the 3 R principle of Restore / Resolve and Rejuvenate to restore BALANCE was shared by Dr.Mike. He also shared the important criteria called ORAC value to determine the Anti-oxidant power of one product vs. another.

Mind-Body Awareness and Emotional Detoxification

  • A common theme across most speakers was the body’s amazing ability to heal itself !
  • The human body is a like a ‘truth-meter’ ….lets learn to listen-in and trust it …it’s communicating 24×7 ….on how well does it feel even as it does its job of being a vehicle for the soul’s journey thru life…
  • Be aware of the way ‘body-energy’ and ‘food-energy’ mingle …whether a positive synergistic spiral leads us to feel ‘light & active’ and happy …or the opposite with dense energy-fields clouding our thinking and our activities
  • Several sources of ancient wisdom from all parts of the world were explained in an easy-to-understand manner
  • … the imperative to detoxify the body and mind … what each of us can do about it. First of all … we need to educate ourselves and then help in raising the general awareness for the benefit of all beings on our planet

Pollutants  in the environment …and how they accumulate in our body

Dr.Jozef Krop, one of Canada’s best known practitioners of patient-based medicine, having fought for patients’ rights in a landmark case at the CPSO in the 1990s (

“Standard air pollution causes more deaths per year than breast cancer, prostate cancer, and automobile accidents. According to the Canadian Medical Association, 21,000 Canadians died last year from pollution. Hundreds of thousands more required medical treatment. This staggering statistic reveals that society must prepare for an increase in pollution related diseases such as fibromyalgia, diabetes, obesity, heart disease, high blood pressure & cancer”

Dr,Krop gave important tips on which pollutants  should we be worried about, how to avoid them, and how  to detoxify from the daily onslaught of poison that we cannot avoid…”5 mn synthetic chemicals surround us…80,000  are in daily use ! 94 % of foods in the US contain ‘Pesticide Residues’……how bad is the toxic load on our bodies …we are lied to all the time Eg. In a recent Study of 88 toxic chemicals … on avg 44 were found in each volunteer. What is disconcerting is that these are not bio-degradable (degradation can take between 180 days to 40 years or longer). The unfortunate outcome is accumulation at an accelerating pace… and as they pass through the placenta barrier and are also present in mother’s milk we have already compromised the health of our subsequent generations.

In a similar vein , Milena Celap’s talk on “CONSUMER ALERT – THE CHEMICALIZATION OF COSMETICS” shared how thickeners, preservatives, emulsifiers, gelling agents, alcohols, and surfactants are just some examples of chemicals used to make cosmetics and toiletries. To make them more pleasing to the senses, to extend their shelf life and to create the perception that products are doing more than they are. Milena encouraged us to do our own study and learn to discern which of those chemicals are known to have harmful effects on our bodies and why going natural is the only sensible approach. A simple test : the ‘whiter / smoother/ shinier/ intensely fragrant’ the look of the cosmetic …the more likely it is to contain harmful ingredients!

Reference sites:

As I walked away from the ‘Whole Life Expo’ – I marveled at how many people are interested in helping each other. The quest to re-discover the wisdom of the ancients and to find a more natural and less invasive way out of our (and our planet’s) health concerns in the 21st century must continue… and events like the Whole Life Expo are indeed most welcome as they help people share experiences.



References : At the Whole Life Expo, some of the speakers, Meher and/or I were able to attend were:

With Dr. Mike Van Thielen, PT, AP, OMD (Ormond Beach, Florida)

…the amazing ability of the body to heal itself, and the essential tools and nutrients necessary to do so. He talked about how and why our standard diet causes disease ( SAD – Standard American Diet!) …the criteria to select the right supplements. He encouraged  a simple, unique, and sensible action plan to successfully restore health, resolve medical problems, and rejuvenate mind and body.

with Dr. Shawn Miller, DC and  Dr. David Carmos, PhD  (La Jolla, California)

Doctors Miller and Carmos are experts on the reversal of the aging process by ‘preparing the ground’ and ‘resoring the balance’. Dr. Carmos at 70 was more agile and sprightly than a teenager as he demonstrated yoga ‘asanas’ on stage. They talked about the ‘Anti-Density Theory’ – the secret to age reversal…the mysteries of perfect health and human alchemy as revealed in the Dead Sea Scrolls and taught by the ancient Essenes. They are co-authors of You’re Never Too Old to Become Young, an encyclopedia of anti-aging and vegan health, and The Essene Master – Gospel of Healing

with Julie Daniluk, R.H.N  (Toronto, Ont)

….outlined a practical guide to managing inflammatory illness such as arthritis, allergies, irritable bowel syndrome and heart disease with the healing power of food….an overview of what causes inflammation and how to stop it in its tracks using delicious and easy to prepare recipes.

with Doug Cook, RD (Toronto, Ont.)

Choosing an effective probiotic can be challenging. Understanding the ABC’s of Probiotics helps in selecting the one that is suitable for each individual. The role of intestinal flora, digestion, and how probiotics benefit the immune system were covered and the audience was introduced to the “biotics” familyPro, Pre, and Syn and their diverse roles in the human body. Also a general review of the types of bacteria as well as the balance of good to bad. This helped better understand digestion and nutrient absorption will be made easier, as well as methods of suppressing harmful bacteria.

As a lay-person who has been practising for over 15 years, Jerry talked about the “Info overload” …and encouraged everyone to be alert to the “biochemical constituents and burn-rates” …which are unique …and can vary from person to person …each person should thru first-hand experimentation find out what foods suit you …we must try and match the regimen to our the metabolic-rate of our bodies…hone in on your metabolic type…the only acid test …how do you feel 2-3 hours after having the food…

…discussed the foundational raw materials that must be consumed in the right form, quality, and quantity in order to fuel optimal biochemistry. Introduced some foods that can help reverse degeneration and aging, prevent metabolic syndrome, increase energy and vitality, and provide the necessary precursors for endocrine and overall hormonal balance…also,the role of insulin resistance and inflammation as underlying causes of degenerative
with Caroline Dupont, MSc, R.H.N.

Enlightened Eating is a practical and inspirational approach to health. A plant-based diet that emphasizes whole, diverse, plant-based, local and living foods is ideal for the wellbeing of the body, the growth of the soul and the health of the planet. Learn how to use awareness to transition to your best diet while balancing physical, mental, emotional and spiritual health to create your most blessed life. Caroline has been teaching an integrated approach to health for over 20 years and is a senior faculty at the Canadian School of Natural Nutrition. She is author of the Enlightened Eating book and CD. She teaches nutrition, meditation and yoga, and offers private consultations, courses, and retreats

with Dr. Lee Know, ND

Dr. Know simplified the complexities of the body while explaining how key nutrients and natural compounds can counter the effects of aging and reduce the risk of disease that affects both the quantity and quality of life….the specific nutrients that are able to regenerate the body at the cellular level, thereby improving mobility, vision, and cardiovascular health…how to maintain a highly functional body for the longest period of time. Dr. Know is a licensed Naturopathic physician and the recipient of several awards. 

with Dino Halikas, ND

Health begins with good digestion. If you have heartburn, gas, bloating, fatigue, digestive pain or are gaining weight, find out what natural solutions there are to all the uncomfortable and embarrassing symptoms of poor digestion. Mr. Halikos shared his passion and knowledge of good health that starts in the gut with the use of Probiotics, Enzymes, and bitter herbs. He is a medical biologist and a chartered Naturopath with 15 years experience in the natural health industry and a naturopathic practice in Drummondville, Quebec.

with Jim Pappas

Overcoming health issues and achieving optimum health can be a daunting task. By investing a great deal of time, money, and energy in restoring his own health, Jim learned firsthand how confusing it can be trying to understand the sometimes conflicting messages from different health professionals. In this lecture, he shared his simple yet effective strategies that can help conquer personal health challenges. Discussions centered around diet, nutrition, acid/alkaline balance, exercise, detoxification, supplements, and how to use natural health services wisely.


Several speakers  touched on the importance of the Spirit in healing  :

with Oliver Couto, B.A.Hons  (Stuttgart, Germany)

‘The Sacred Bee’ is an extraordinary 3-part documentary that unites the world’s major religions through the paradigm of the bee. Currently in production, this fascinating film combines science, art, and religion to tell its wonderful story. A rough cut of 30 minutes of Part 1 was shown , followed by questions and answers with the producer/beekeeper/Apitherapist Oliver Couto

with Luciana Stan DNM, MNLP, MTLT

Huna is one powerful way of reconnecting with the source inside each one of us. This was an opportunity to experience the power of these long-hidden shamanic teachings of self empowerment. Previously this information was only available to a restricted circle of Kahunas in Hawaii. Now this information is being made available to everyone so that everyone can realize how powerful he or she is …

with Master Teresa Yeung

Chinese Qi Gong is an ancient art of self-healing practised by millions in the world. Master Teresa Yeung, who received the World Organization of Natural Medicine Award in 2006, and is the only successor to Grandmaster Weizhao Wu, introduced the concepts, methods, and healing techniques of Chinese Qi Gong. She gave hands-on Qi building demonstrations and sent her Qi to all present to feel the Qi, to re-energize and balance their body. WU & YEUNG QI GONG WELLNESS INSTITUTE

with Abe Hardoon

The ancient wisdom of Kabbalah was presented to the world at the beginning of time. Kabbalah is the recipe of how to live a life of happiness and fulfillment, a life free of chaos, disease, and uncertainty.  Kabbalah’s wisdom enables us to be creative, loving, strong, and to  control our own destiny. This lecture introduced some of the basic  teachings of these ancient secrets….further studies can be pursued at the KABBALAH CENTRE TORONTO

In the most recent weeks, attended several exciting events*. On 13th November, it was wonderful being present to hear Dr. David Suzuki deliver the Keynote Address at the Annual Convention of Ontario Association of Naturopaths ( The conference theme was Revolutionizing Medicine: The Connection Between the Environment and Health.

David Suzuki, Co-Founder of the David Suzuki Foundation, is an award-winning scientist, environmentalist and broadcaster. He is renowned for his radio and television programs that explain the complexities of the natural sciences in a compelling, easily understood way.

Dr. Suzuki is  recognized as a world leader in sustainable ecology. He is the recipient of UNESCO’s Kalinga Prize for Science, the United Nations Environment Program Medal, UNEPs Global 500 and in 2009 won the Right Livelihood Award that is considered the alternate Nobel.

  • Quoting from his book ‘The Big Picture’ Dr Suzuki shared …”what a fascinating time this is…as a species we have come so far so fast that it simply boggles the mind…”
  • In the 250,000 history of the homo sapien we have relied on a key survival-skill unique to our species – i.e. foresight and ability to plan. Yet this is the very skill we seem to be willfully ignoring as we wrestle with the planet’s dwindling resources. Dr.Suzuki underlined the urgency very graphically through the ‘59th minute’ analogy ( of how geometric progression accelerates with each passing minute).
  • Further, he outlined the futility of using GDP as a measure of well-being of man and his home (planet earth)…In ‘The Big Picture’ he continues …”unless we can find a way to live in balance with the natural systems that sustain us, our species will ultimately reach a dead end. That’s the bottom line.”
  • For each one of us (and as a collective, for the human race) …making ourselves ‘aware’ and then exercising a ‘responsible choice’ in every thought , word and action is indeed an imperative.
  • Some thoughts on what we might expect out of next month’s key Copenhagen Summit were shared. Dr.Suzuki made an impassioned plea – Kyoto has to be followed through…if we are to do something …we have to do it NOW!
  • The evening ended with a clear message of hope. Humanity will find the courage to stride forward with confidence … our better sense must eventually prevail.

Excerpts from:

“What we do to nature, we do to ourselves.

Human health and the environment are intimately connected through the food we eat, the water we drink, and the air we breathe.

Preventing pollutants and toxins from entering our environment and bodies would have a profound effect on the health of ordinary Canadians.

But international comparisons show Canada falling behind in protecting its citizens from environmental threats to their health….

….Health Report Series

This series of five reports on health and the environment–prepared for the David Suzuki Foundation by environmental lawyer David Boyd– looks to provide workable solutions to improve Canada’s poor environmental health regulations.

The Air We Breathe:
An International Comparison of Air Quality Standards

The Food We Eat:
An International Comparison of Pesticide Regulations

The Water We Drink
: An International Comparison of Drinking Water Quality Standards

Northern Exposure: Acute Pesticide Poisoning in Canada

Prescription For A Healthy Canada
: Towards A National Health Strategy

Towards the end of the month as an interesting coincidence… Naturopathy once again caught the public eye through a debate on the pages of the National Post on whether the Ontario government was well advised in its move to permit a greater role for Naturopaths…

Naturopathy a prescription for quackery

Posted: November 24, 2009, 8:30 AM by NP Editor

Scott Gavura, naturopathy

and a befitting rejoinder : “ The power of Natural medicine “ Meghan Walker And Tara Gignac, National Post Published: Friday, November 27, 2009 .Read more:

Once the debates are done…lets get on with it. What matters is first making ourselves aware …and then exercising our choice to lead our life in a way which promotes ‘natural’ good health .The days of merely managing symptoms  through a healthcare system which the planet can not afford are numbered. For more on Naturopathy …click :

Let’s continue to revel in the journey of discovery…and let’s continue to share notes.


Recommended Reading – some of Dr David Suzuki’s books which I picked up at the 13th November event  :

1. The Sacred Balance – Rediscovering our place in Nature’

2.David Suzuki’s Green Guide – HOW TO FIND fresher,tastier,healthier food, CREATE an eco-friendly home,MAKE sustainable transportation choices,REDUCE consumption,and BE a green citizen.

3. The BIG Picture : Reflections on science,humanity and a quickly changing planet.

4. The History of Naturopathic Medicine – a Canadian perspective by Iva Lloyd,ND

*During November : also had the opportunity to :

–          participate in a 10 day Retreat at the Dhamma Toraan Ontario Vipassana Center and

–          visit the 23rd ‘Whole Life Expo’ at Toronto

…more about these events in a subsequent blog

Sharing – Recent Learnings

In the most recent months, have had the extra-ordinary opportunity to attend programs like :

–         Raw Foods & Healing Herbs  – by Brigitte Mars at the Omega Institute

–         Natural Products EXPO EAST at Boston

–         Natural Products Expo – Canadian Health Food Association, Toronto

–         The Long & Healthy Life Symposium – by Holistic Research Foundation of Canada

Sharing with you some of the key take-aways for myself  :

    1. Quite clearly, a tipping-point has been reached. To wit …even the richest economy in the world can not afford its health system. Further, if the rat race continues( fuelled by mindless‘ consumption’), we are condemning our home planet.Starting with myself,, a choice has to be exercised. Sustainability is entirely linked to this ‘choice’. We can together agree to redress the ‘imbalance’ and move consciously away from ‘disease management’ to ‘disease prevention’( integrative medicine)  …and further to a sense of holistic ‘well-being’.
    2. In tackling any issue, it is the ‘root’ that has to be tackled. Our lifestyle choices – the food we eat, the air we breathe and the thoughts we think … indeed lie at the root of ALL aspects of living in joy and peace.
    3. For those of us who look for inspiration … there is no dearth of the ‘wisdom of the ancients’ that has been passed on to us by our forefathers. There message is a singular message everywhere we look … there is only ONE. Nature’s message is writ on every leaf ,every microbe …every breath.
    4. For those of us who look for ‘evidence’ … and if for some reason the evidence provided by Mother Nature and our home planet ( ‘Gaia’) is not enough…science is indeed catching up…and with increasing frequency what started as the lone voice of a Schweitzer or an Einstein is fast becoming a chorus of the like-minded interested in ‘honest enquiry’…without biases. Have recently read and would strongly recommend the following 2 books …
    • ’Food,Inc’
    • ‘Slow Death By Rubber Duck‘-How the Toxic Chemistry of Everyday Life Affects our Health’ by Rick Smith and Bruce Lourie
    • Interestingly,the National Post yesterday had a very interesting article on “We Can’t Say No’ …this is Why we’re fat … Like Lab rats … we too are programmed to gorge ourselves on fat and sugar “

    Seems all that is then left is for us to do is … choose well … and ACT!




    Excerpts from ‘Food Inc’ and ‘Slow Death By Rubber Duck’ web-sites follow:

    Food,Inc’ : seeing the movie and reading ….strongly recommended !!!

    Reference :

    If daily headlines about food poisoning, pollution, labor abuse, and rampant hunger have left you worried or confused about the foods you eat, Food, Inc. provides the facts behind the problems—and shows what you can do to make a difference.

    Eric Schlosser

    on the industrialization of our food supply

    Michael Pollan

    on the benefits of locally – sourced, organic eating

    Robert Kenner

    on the making of Food, Inc.

    Marion Nestle

    on sorting out food facts from fictions

    Anna Lappé

    on how the U.S. food system promotes global warming

    Muhammad Yunus

    on the global impact of food industrialization

    Joel Salatin

    on how to declare your independence from industrial food

    Gary Hirshberg

    on how industrial food is going mainstream

    Slow Death By Rubber Duck: …….strongly recommended !!!

    The truth of the matter is that toxic chemicals are now found at low levels in countless applications, in everything from personal care products and cooking pots and pans to electronics, furniture, clothing, building materials and children’s toys. They make their way into our bodies through our food, air and water. From the moment we get up from a good night’s sleep under wrinkle resistant sheets (which are treated with the known carcinogen formaldehyde) to the time we go to bed at night after a snack of microwave popcorn (the interior of the bag being coated with an indestructible chemical that builds up in our bodies), pollution surrounds us.

    Far from escaping it when we shut our front door at night, we’ve unwittingly welcomed these toxins into our homes in countless ways. In a particularly graphic example, it’s been estimated that by the time the average woman grabs her morning coffee, she has applied 126 different chemicals in 12 different products to her face, body and hair.

    And the result? Not surprisingly, a large and growing body of scientific research links exposure to toxic chemicals to many ailments that plague people, including several forms of cancer,reproductive problems and birth defects, respiratory illnesses such as asthma and neurodevelopmental disorders such as attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).

    We have all become guinea pigs in a vast and uncontrolled experiment.

    At this moment in history, the image conjured up by the word “pollution” is just as properly an innocent rubber duck as it is a giant smoke stack.

    -From the book Slow Death by Rubber Duck

    Table of Contents
    Foreword by Theo Colborn, Co-Author of “Our Stolen Future”
    one: Pollution Then and Now
    two: Rubber Duck Wars
    three: The World’s Slipperiest Substance
    four: The New PCBs
    five: Quicksilver, Slow Death
    six: Germophobia
    seven: Risky Business: , 4-D and the Sound of Science
    eight: Mother Knows Best
    nine: Detox
    Resource Guide/Further Reading

    7  Tips to Celebrating Your LIFE…Naturally !

    Of course, each one of us can continue through life blaming ‘the other’ for just about everything that is wrong. Or… we can simply choose to take charge of what is rightfully ours…..our life! The choice is simple. The best news is most of the good things in life ‘come naturally’ and better still …are virtually FREE. What works for you…and what doesn’t is entirely within your control. Why is it then that we never find the time to be grateful for the wondrous gifts that Nature has showered us with?

    • Tip # 1 Listen to your body !

    There is a very good reason why the mother holds her baby close to her breast or the skilled physician listens carefully to the pulse. They know the cues are always there…provided we are willing to listen. Learning to differentiate clearly between what agrees with us and what doesn’t is simply a matter of keen observation and some patience:-)

    • Tip # 2 Why is it so difficult to hear our own voice?

    We live in constant fear of being bored. Being by ourselves (even for small periods of time) is something we learn to avoid. We have been conditioned ‘to step on the gas’ in terms of the things we need to possess or consume or ‘get done’. The amount of clutter we accumulate in order to feel fulfilled becomes apparent only during a spring-cleaning or house-move. All this leads to a veritable cacophony … which deadens our ability to listen to ourselves. If we could just strip the non-essentials away from our overly-full lives. We can regain our ability to see…hear…feel … re-connect with ourselves.

    • Tip # 3 Cues from Nature!

    If we took a moment to look around. One thing is patently clear. The bee does not need a road-map to reach the nectar in the flower. The blossoming bud does not need to consult with an external authority. A bolt of lightning does not have to ponder over when and where to strike. And the seasons change … following their own cycle. Everything just happens…naturally. At the right time …for the right reasons. A cue perhaps for our overly busy selves?

    • Tip # 4 One man’s meat is another man’s …

    The wheel of evolving civilization has indeed come full circle for us to realize several of the common ‘white’ foods ( refined sugar, refined salt, refined flour and some would even say dairy milk)are nothing short of a general recipe for deterioration. Each person’s constitution is unique. What suits one person does not necessarily agree with the other.  Hence, it is important to find out what is your specific constitution …thru direct & personal experience and in consultation with deep professionals, find out what works …and what doesn’t …for YOU!

    • Tip # 5 When less is MORE!

    Researchers have long debated on which food or which exercise regimen might lead to the highest contribution towards longevity. You will be amazed to know they are in agreement on one thing. The single biggest contribution towards a healthy and active lifestyle is eating only 80% of what our stomach can hold. Lets take the time to appreciate what we eat. Lets savor  its looks …its aroma… its texture…relishing all the organoleptics and the wholesomeness. In addition to enjoying each morsel ( or each sip ) perhaps we can briefly contemplate on the generous contributions from Nature that went into preparing the food, at each step of its journey before it eventually came to our table.

    The same principle holds for our breath. If we can slow down…and learn to appreciate each breath …the wonder that it represents… we might suddenly discover the sheer abundance of LIFE which has always been there. Literally right under our very nose!

    • Tip # 6 Its a question of ‘balance’ and ‘perspective’ …

    Nothing by itself is good or bad. How often have we heard this? So what is amiss? The answer once again lies in Nature. If we can take a moment to note. Each sunrise is balanced by an equal and opposite sunset. Each spring by fall. Each summer by winter. The cycle of life and death repeats again and again. Each at its own time. Each in its own glory. Might this apply to:

    * what we eat?

    * what we think?

    * what we say?

    * what we do ( in terms of exercise, hobby and work)?

    Each time we eat, think, say or do … we are creating a new reality. Our reality…the only one we have!

    • Tip # 7 Taking charge…NOW!

    If the above tips appear to make sense; then the only step left is to act. There will be umpteen reasons why we should leave the next step for ‘tomorrow’. And each time, it would be good to remind ourselves it is ‘my life’ …’my health’ … ‘my well-being’. Why would I leave authentic living for a tomorrow which may never come?

    Lets use all the means at our disposal. In addition to listening to cues from nature all around us, the 21st century has given us unprecedented access to knowledge & awareness. The world-wide net makes it so much easier to be in touch with like-minded friends…to seek guidance from knowledgeable practitioners in the fields of mind, body and spirit balance.

    Lets take the time to LISTEN to our own bodies, thoughts and emotions.

    Lets connect with our real self.

    Lets share our experience and learnings.

    Lets revel in the wonder that is LIFE.

    Let’s celebrate Life…Naturally!

    – Jaspal

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