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feel good • live simply • laugh more

HAPPY HEALTHY HEART What Pioneering Docs Are Learning about Heart Care


Natural Ways to Relax Deeply

LOVE MAGNET Draw True Love Your Way

February 2014



Mercer County, NJ

Cycling Back to Its Origins


No More Pain! Dr. Magaziner can help you recover from Chronic or Acute Pain Why Do I Have Pain?

There are also two distinct types of pain. They are acute and chronic.

Pain is a normal response of the body when damage has occurred or something is wrong. It’s like an alarm clock; letting us no we have to stop what we are doing or take some type of corrective action. Without pain life would be difficult and dangerous. We would have to be on constant alert because we would not know when something’s wrong which could lead to more serious or lifethreatening problems.

Acute pain usually means something new and or serious has happened which requires some action (e.g., back pain from lifting something heavy or pain after a car accident).

For example, when your hand touches something hot the sensors in your skin (nerve endings) rapidly send millions of messages to your brain about what’s going on. Your brain then creates the pain signals alerting you to remove your hand quickly before additional damage occurs.

How does it work? The spinal cord is the main route for all pain messages to the brain, where pain is then registered. Essentially there are two ways pain signals travel to the brain. The first is the fast way (motorway) the second the slow way (side roads). The former leads to sharp stabbing pain and the latter to a continuous dull and / or aching pain. Of course feelings of pain can be a mixture of these two.

Chronic pain is more commonly associated with an old injury or the slow bodily changes which are painful (e.g., arthritis pain from “’wear and tear”). Over time, chronic pain can cause you to change your normal habits which can lead to additional problems e.g. becoming less active and gaining weight. Such habits become part of a vicious cycle which feeds the pain and keeps it central in your life. Regardless of what type of pain you are having, it is important to get it evaluated by a healthcare professional. Finding the cause of your pain is most important.

diagnosis and treatment of acute and chronic injuries. Once an accurate diagnosis is made, Dr. Magaziner will design a specific treatment plan for you condition. Dr. Magaziner’s philosophy is to start with the more conservative treatments (less invasive) first. Dr. Magaziner provides multiple forms of treatment to help patients recover from an acute or chronic conditions. Including: State of the Art Bio-cellular Regenerative Therapies (PRP – Platelet Rich Plasma Therapy, Stem Cell Grafts, Fat Grafts and prolotherapy) inteventional pain treatments (joint, trigger point and epidural injections) and Minimally Invasive Endoscopic Surgery if necessary. If you are suffering from acute or chronic pain, call Dr. Magaziner today!

Dr. Magaziner has been in the field of interventional pain management for over 25 years. He specializes in the

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Natural Awakenings is your guide to a healthier, more balanced life. In each issue readers find cutting-edge information on natural health, nutrition, fitness, personal growth, green living, creative expression and the products and services that support a healthy lifestyle.



Pioneering Doctors and Patients Reinvent Cardio Care by Linda Sechrist


BUSTERS Natural Ways to Slide into a State of Calmness by Kathleen Barnes

Practical Pillars of Well-Being

by Christa O’Leary



Bringing Out the Best in Introverts by Meredith Montgomery

HOW TO ADVERTISE To advertise with Natural Awakenings or request a media kit, please contact us at 609-249-9044 or email Deadline for ads: the 10th of the month.


CALENDAR SUBMISSIONS Email Calendar Events to: or fax to 609-249-9044. Deadline for calendar: the 10th of the month. REGIONAL MARKETS Advertise your products or services in multiple markets! Natural Awakenings Publishing Corp. is a growing franchised family of locally owned magazines serving communities since 1994. To place your ad in other markets call 239-449-8309. For franchising opportunities call 239-530-1377 or visit 4 4

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EDITORIAL SUBMISSIONS Email articles, news items and ideas to: Deadline for editorial: the 10th of the month.



26 CHOCOLATE AS Boosting Diets and Heart Health by Judith Fertig

28 CYCLES OF SPIN Returning to its Heart-Healthy Origins


by Janet Osen


Katherine Woodward Thomas on Drawing True Love Our Way by Debra Melani


A Hawaiian Mantra Lets Love Back In


How to Keep Little Hearts Humming by Dr. Shawn Messonnier


letterfrompublisher “I’m happy that I have brought laughter because I have been shown by many the value of it in so many lives, in so many ways.” ~ Lucille Ball


ow wonderful to be able to instill laughter, simple pleasures and creativity in our own and others’ lives. It’s a goal of mine and I hope you Owner/Publisher Lori Beveridge

will join in because it’s fun.

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I fondly recall laughing uncontrollably as a youngster while playing cards

and board games with friends. Family crafts and creative games were a large and joyful part of my childhood days. Baking was a special favorite because it so easily

Managing Editor Dave Beveridge

made us smile, warmed hearts and filled our tummies. Simple humorous moments Proofreader Randy Kambic

regularly sent us off in healthy fits of giggles and belly laughs.

Like most adults, too many children in today’s world seem to carry over-

whelming demands and stress on their shoulders. Our remedy as children was to just stand up and shake the sillies into expression, which I love to see is one of the recommended antidotes in Kathleen Barnes’ article, “Simple Stress Busters,” on pages 20 and 21. You can start by shaking your feet, legs, hands and arms, proceeding all the way from your torso to your head until your whole body feels

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loose or you shake loose a good laugh at yourself. Laughter, as they say, can be the best medicine.

It feels good to surround yourself with people that make you laugh. I like to

watch a rerun of the best of I Love Lucy or another favorite sitcom and sometimes sit in the front row at a live comedy show. Smiling at people we see is free and usually reaps a good-hearted smile in return.

To generate smiles on St. Valentine’s Day, post a series of surprise hearts for

someone you love. Starting the first of the month, cut out a heart, write on it a reason why that person is special to you and tape it at eye level to a door in your house. How wonderful that happiness multiples inside by what we give out. Happy St. Valentine’s Day!

Phone: 609-249-9044 Fax: 609-249-9044 © 2014 by Natural Awakenings. All rights reserved. Although some parts of this publication may be reproduced and reprinted, we require that prior permission be obtained in writing. Natural Awakenings is a free publication distributed locally and is supported by our advertisers. It is available in selected stores, health and education centers, healing centers, public libraries and wherever free publications are generally seen. Please call to find a location near you or if you would like copies placed at your business. We do not necessarily endorse the views expressed in the articles and advertisements, nor are we responsible for the products and services advertised. We welcome your ideas, articles and feedback.

SUBSCRIPTIONS Subscriptions are available by sending $25 (for 12 issues) to the publisher. Call for details.

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Natural Awakenings is printed on recycled newsprint with soy-based ink.

natural awakenings

February 2014


newsbriefs Annual Runway to Runway Event Benefits Dreamlift Do you have a special event in the community? Open a new office? Move? Recently become certified in a new modality?


EAC Health & Fitness, in Ewing, will present its seventh annual Runway to Runway to benefit the Mercer County Chapter of the Sunshine Foundation. The gala event will take place from 6 to 10 p.m. on March 29 at PEAC. This year’s event theme, Casino Royale, will feature professionally run casino games, bingo and live entertainment by the Ewing-based band, The TEMPOraries. The evening will include (Back, L-R): Rodney Pete Watson, James McKinstry, Dickie Noles, Michelle wine and beer tasting, a silent auction, raffle drawings and food catered by Briehler, Michael Briehler Cugino’s Italian Specialties of Penning(Middle, L-R): Kara Forsythe, Valerie ton. Added this year is a 50/50 raffle; Lopenzina, Cathy DiCostanzo, Pat corresponding tickets will be sold at Colavita, Christine Tentilucci other area Sunshine events prior to the (Front, L-R): Laurel Reid, Susan Runway event to increase ticket sales Fanning, Kalel Martinez and his mom and the prize money amount. All proceeds from Runway to Runway will benefit the Sunshine Foundation’s Dreamlift, which transports 110 physically handicapped, critically ill or abused children from Trenton, New Jersey, to Orlando, Florida, for one day of fun at Walt Disney World. It’s an adventure most of these kids would not experience if not for the Dreamlift program. Along with buying tickets to the event, the program can be supported via making a monetary donation, Adopt-a-Seat (a direct sponsorship of one of the Dreamlift attendees to help fund their travel and accommodations) or by donating an item to the silent auction or raffle. Businesses can also co-sponsor the event. Since 2008, with the support of the community, PEAC has raised more than $150,000 to benefit the Dreamlift. “We are honored to once again present Runway to Runway for the Sunshine Foundation,” says PEAC President Michael Briehler. “It means a lot to help give these special children a wonderful experience at Disney.” Cost: $40 per person and includes $20 in game chips for the casino tables (all tickets must be purchases in advance). Location: 1440 Lower Ferry Rd. For more information, to volunteer, donate, become a sponsor or purchase a ticket, contact Laurel Reid at PEAC Health & Fitness at 609-883-2000, email LReid@PEACHealth or visit

News Briefs We welcome news items relevant to the subject matter of our magazine. We also welcome any suggestions you may have for a news item. Contact us for guidelines so we can assist you throughout the process. We’re here to help!

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Mercer County, NJ

Beat the Winter Blues in Plainsboro


xperiencing increased stress and anxiety, especially during the winter months, can negatively impact emotional and physical health. To help improve, join Danielle Tararuj, LSW, MEd, Primary Therapist, Senior Link Program with Princeton House Behavioral Health, for an uplifting free program on recognizing the signs of depression and learning healthier ways to cope with life’s stressors from 1 to 2 p.m. on February 7 at the Plainsboro Recreation Center. Location: 641 Plainsboro Rd. For more information or to register, call Princeton Health Care System Community Education & Outreach at 609-497-4480 or visit

Take Six-Week Total Transformation Challenge


ody Project Studio is everything a typical gym isn’t,” comments Lindsay Vastola, founder and CEO of the unique Robbinsville-based boutique fitness studio designed exclusively for success-driven women of all fitness levels. A great opportunity to realize how the studio can bolster fitness is to take its next six-week Total Transformation Challenge, with the fourth annual Lindsay Vastola edition set to begin on March 3 with registration for a limited number of participants starting on February 8. The Challenge, that includes a customized fitness program, daily meal plans, recipes, before-and-after body composition analysis and personal coaching, is “our signature event,” adds Vastola. “The program is ideal for women that are frustrated or bored with their current fitness routine, have hit a weight loss plateau or need a kickstart with total accountability.” The Body Project Studio offers women customized, small-group fitness and lifestyle programs including interval training, yoga, barre, TRX and personal training as well as nutrition counseling, cleansing programs, speakers and special events. Vastola continues, “Women who are looking for a results-driven fitness and lifestyle program find that Body Project offers the perfect alternative to a typical gym: accountability, top-notch instructors and every tool needed to succeed, all in a chic and stylish studio.” Also, every second Saturday, Body Project hosts Showcase Saturdays, at which attendees can try two complimentary 25-minute featured workout sessions. Donations to the Robbinsville Food Pantry are kindly requested in return for the free sessions. Location: Foxmoor Center, 1007 Washington Blvd., Robbinsville. For more information, call Dana Leopardi at 609-336-0108, email or visit See ad on page 29.

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natural awakenings

February 2014


Local Blood Drive in Hightstown


he annual Melvin H. Kreps Middle School blood drive will be held from 2 to 7 p.m. on February 4 in Hightstown. The event will take place in the school’s auditorium. There are severe blood shortages this time of year, especially due to the inclement weather. Each donation of blood can save up to three lives. Whether or not you can personally donate, please help by encouraging participation with this lifesaving donation. Appointment times are from 1:45 to 6:45 p.m. in any quarter-hour time slot. Location:5 Kent Lane, Hightstown. To schedule an appointment or for questions for the Central Jersey Blood Center, contact Leigh Wilkins at 732842-5750 ext 270 or email LWilkins@

Gestures, in love,

are incomparably more attractive, effective and valuable than words. ~ François Rabelais

newsbriefs Soil Poster Contest Offers Savings Bonds Awards


ew Jersey’s Soil Conservation Districts are accepting entries in a poster contest designed to raise awareness of natural resources and related issues among young people. The theme for this year’s poster is Dig Deeper – Mysteries in the Soil. Students may compete in grades two to three, four to six, seven to eight, and nine to 12. First-place winners in each category will receive $200 savings bonds; second-place, $100 bonds; and third-place, $50 bonds. All first-place winners will be entered in the National Association of Conservation Districts poster contest. The competition is sponsored by the New Jersey Department of Agriculture Soil Conservation Committee, New Jersey Association of Conservation Districts and the state’s 15 Soil Conservation Districts, which work to conserve and manage soil and water resources in the state. All entries must be submitted through the local districts. To find your local Soil Conservation District, visit NJ.Gov/Agriculture/Divisions/anr/nrc/conservdistricts. html. For more information and entry form, visit NJ.Gov/Agriculture/Divisions/anr/ pdf/conservationpostercontest.pdf.

Chocolate Walk and Carriage Rides in Bordentown


hat is a chocolate walk? It’s as simple and delicious as strolling and savoring treats. Visit downtown Bordentown from 6 to 9 p.m. on February 7 when local businesses open their doors for a free evening of fun and chocolate treats. Print your passport and visit the shops and galleries; when done with your adventure through town, turn in your signed passport to enter a drawing for $50 in Bordentown Bucks. Also, enjoy dining at one of Bordentown’s fine eateries or enjoy a horse-drawn carriage ride from Bucks County Carriages. For more information, visit or contact Rebecca’s Vintage Boutique and Consignment Shop at 609-298-9422.

Slow Food Winter Farmers’ Market in Princeton


elebrate and enjoy local food and more at the Eat Slow winter farmers’ market in Princeton from 10 a.m. to 2 p.m. on February 8. The event will take place at D&R Greenway Land Trust Johnson Education Center and is organized by the West Windsor Community Farmers’ Market. The event will include live music, locally produced meats, breads, mushrooms, cheeses, wine, sauces, baked goods, sweets and more. Vendors scheduled to attend include Cherry Grove Farm, Chickadee Creek Farm, Davidson’s Exotic Mushrooms, Donna & Company Chocolates, Judith’s Desserts, Rocky Brook Farm, WoodsEdge Wools Farm and many more. Cost: $2 donation suggested. Location: D&R Greenway Land Trust, Johnson Education Center, One Preservation Place, Princeton. For more information, call 609-5775113 or visit or


Mercer County, NJ

Winter Break Camp at Fernbrook Farms in Chesterfield


onsider having your children enjoy and learn about the great outdoors on a school vacation day. Winter Break Camp will offer many fun-filled and educational activities for youngsters from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. on Presidents Day on February 17 at Fernbrook Farms Environmental Education Center, in Chesterfield. The program is available for ages 6 to 14 with extended care available from 7:30 to 8:30 a.m. before and 4 to 5:30 p.m. after camp. The daily schedule of farm animal feeding, exploration, snack, activities and journal time mirrors the special Fernbrook summer camp schedule but with seasonal winter activities. Attendees will be able to follow animal tracks in the snow (or mud), make winter bird feeders, build snow forts, learn about winter wilderness survival, warm up near the fireplace, tap sugar maple trees to make syrup, play camouflage and other outdoor games, visit the farm animals and more. Cost: $58/child. Location: Rte. 545, Chesterfield. For more information, call Jenna Collins at 609-298-4028, email Jenna@ or visit

Stormy Art Display at PEAC


s part of its Art on Display Program, PEAC Health & Fitness, in Ewing, will proudly display works of art from painter Kaitlin Deering. This will mark her first exhibit at PEAC. Deering, a self-taught artist, uses elements of nature, such as tornadoes, storms, climate and environmental fluctuations, as inspiration for her paintings. Her childhood in Oklahoma has greatly influenced her work. She tries to capture “the growing tension before a storm; the utter fear, fascination and sheer beauty in the midst of the storm; and the calm quiet of the aftermath.” Deering says she rarely plans a painting prior to starting it, but allows it to evolve as she stands before it. “My work strives to evoke a specific emotional reaction from the viewer,” she says, “and to provide an alternate reality that the viewer can escape to if only for a moment.” The artist has exhibited her works at galleries and business establishments in Lambertville, New Jersey, and New Hope and Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, where she resides. Location: 1440 Lower Ferry Rd. For more information, call Christine Tentilucci at 609-883-2000, email CTentilucci@ or visit PEAC art display is open to the public.

businessspotlight AFFORDABLE Solar Panel Installation OFFERING


ccording to Dan Hicks of Sun 101, a solar energy installation company based in Hunterdon County, PSE&G is bringing back a highly popular solar incentive program for 2014—the Solar Loan III Program. Its previous two versions enabled thousands of area homeowners to affordably switch to solar electricity within PSE&G’s service area. PSE&G uses the program to meet the state’s requirement to supply a set amount of renewable, clean electricity in New Jersey. As it turns out, it’s more cost-effective to assist its customers to install solar panels on their own homes rather than buy land to build systems owned by the utility. This program grants an excellent opportunity for PSE&G customers to utilize green energy as well as add value to their home and property. The program not only allows the homeowner to use every last watt of electricity their system produces but to also have more than 30 percent of the cost of the system paid for by PSE&G. Combine that with the 30 percent Federal Tax Credit from the IRS and an average residential solar system becomes quite affordable. On the average, solar systems installed using the PSE&G Solar Loan III Program pay for themselves in only about two years. Take into account that the panels typically carry a 25-year guarantee and the decision can look even better. “We have installed dozens of systems using the prior two PSE&G Solar Loan Programs and have the experience to guide and educate people through the process of applying for the funds,” says Hicks. “Some people were skeptical at first but now I get Christmas cards from clients thanking me for helping to eliminate their electric bill.” For a free consultation and to take advantage of this program, call 609-460-4637, email or visit See ad on page 11. natural awakenings

February 2014



Early Warnings of Heart Troubles Differ for Women


omen may worry more about breast cancer, but in reality, heart disease is the top killer of American women, claiming 300,000 lives a year, 7.5 times the number that die of breast cancer, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Although heart disease is more often perceived as a men’s issue, since 1984 more women have died of heart disease than men. Part of the reason may be that women’s heart attacks can differ from men’s and the American Heart Association (AHA) warns that women often fail to recognize the symptoms, ranging from torso aches and pains and nausea to anxiety, shortness of breath, dizziness and extreme fatigue. They may experience subtle symptoms for months and write them off as byproducts of menopause, heartburn or effects of aging. The National Institutes of Health states that 43 percent of women that have heart attacks experience no chest pain. The difference between the more subtle signs of a heart attack in women and the more dramatic signs in men may help explain why 75 percent of men, prompted to act quickly, survive a first heart attack, while only 62 percent of women do, according to the AHA. “Research shows that women may not be diagnosed or treated as aggressively as men,” notes the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, part of the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services.

Nostalgia Arms Us for the Future


aving lingering fond memories of happy times, once actually thought to be a psychiatric disorder, have now been confirmed as a healthy and, ultimately, positive activity. Most people experience nostalgia at least once a week and nearly half of those surveyed reported experiencing it three or four times a week, say researchers at England’s University of Southampton. When speaking wistfully of the past, individuals are usually reconstructing happy memories of family and friends, and typically become more optimistic about the future, reports lead researcher and Social Psychologist Constantine Sedikides, Ph.D., who observes, “Nostalgia makes us a bit more human.” The Southampton paper, presented to the American Psychological Association, meshes well with another study confirming that nostalgic memories inspire positive feelings of joy, high self-regard, belonging and meaningfulness in life. In two studies, social psychologists at North Dakota State University found that past fond memories help us become more self-confident and cope better in the present. “We see nostalgia as a psychological resource that people can dip into to conjure the evidence they need to assure themselves that they’re valued,” says lead researcher Clay Routledge. 10

Mercer County, NJ



ver the years, a broad range of research has confirmed that omega-3 fatty acids found in fatty fish like salmon, tuna and sardines promote heart and brain health. Now researchers at the University of Pennsylvania’s Perelman School of Medicine have found that taking fish oil supplements isn’t as effective at keeping blood pressure under control as eating an actual fish. The animal study published in the U.S. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences shows that eating oily fish helped open ion channels, a complex series of membranes in the cells that line blood vessels, letting sodium, calcium and potassium in and out of those crucial cells and helping reduce blood pressure. Because fish oil supplements did not activate the ion channels, they didn’t reduce blood pressure in the same way.



aintaining healthy blood pressure is vital for long-term heart health, and scientists have now discovered evidence that a component of egg whites may have beneficial cardiovascular effects. Researchers from Clemson University, in South Carolina, found that a peptide in egg white, one of the building blocks of proteins, reduces blood pressure in animals about as much as a low dose of Captopril, a prescription medication for high blood pressure. The RVPSL peptide acts as a natural ACE inhibitor, functioning similar to the entire family of prescription medications that treat hypertension.

A Different Breathalyzer Test for Heart Failure


imply blowing up a balloon may help doctors test heart function, according to a new study from the Cleveland Clinic. Although such examinations usually require expensive and sometimes invasive procedures, the new test can be done in a doctor’s office in 30 seconds, according to the research findings published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology. The patient simply breathes into a Mylar balloon, similar to a party version, and the air is passed through a machine to produce an individual “breathprint”. Researchers determined that exhaled breath contains volatile organic compounds that can be easily analyzed to determine potential heart failure.

Zinc Orchestrates Immune Response


any have heard that zinc can stop a cold in its tracks, and new research from Ohio State University tells us why; it turns out that zinc gently taps the brakes on immune responses, slowing them down and preventing inflammation from spiraling out of control. The researchers’ work with human cells and animals found that zinc serves to balance the immune response within the cells so that the consequences of insufficient zinc at the time of an infection include excessive inflammation. Of all the zinc contained in our bodies, only about 10 percent of it is readily accessible to help fight off an infection, notes Daren Knoell, professor of pharmacy and internal medicine and lead author of the study, published in Cell Reports. The research team suggests that proper zinc balance is especially important in battling serious and potentially deadly infections. Zinc deficiency affects about 2 billion people worldwide, including an estimated 40 percent of the U.S. elderly.

Happy Marriage, Healthier Lives


University of Missouri expert says that people in happy marriages are more likely to rate their health better than their peers as they age. Evidently, engaging with one’s spouse builds a strong relationship that can improve spirits, promote feelings of well-being and lower stress. Analyzing data from 707 continuously married adults that participated in the Marital Instability Over the Life Course panel study, a 20-year nationwide research project begun in 1980, researchers found that married people have better mental and physical health and are less likely to develop chronic conditions than their unmarried, widowed or divorced peers. Thus, researchers recommended involving spouses and families in treatment for any illness. They further suggested that in cases of a strained marital relationship, improving marital harmony would also improve health. natural awakenings

February 2014



globalbriefs News and resources to inspire concerned citizens to work together in building a healthier, stronger society that benefits all.

Wild Valentines

Many Animals Mate for Life

FDA Moves to Ban Trans Fats


eart-clogging trans fatty acids may soon be a thing of the past. The U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has taken the first step to remove trans fats from its GRAS (generally recognized as safe) list, effectively banning their use in food products. Trans fats, also known as hydrogenated vegetable oils, can be found in many processed foods, including baked goods, microwave popcorn, peanut butter, frozen pizza, margarine and coffee creamers. Created by adding hydrogen to liquid oils to turn them into a solid form, trans fats have been used to improve the texture, shelf life or flavor of foods. For more than a decade, numerous scientific studies have documented that trans fats raise dangerous LDL cholesterol and lower good HDL cholesterol. The FDA’s proposed ban would require the food industry to gradually phase out all trans fats, likely over several months or years, noting their threat to health. Commissioner Margaret Hamburg said the move could prevent 20,000 heart attacks a year and 7,000 deaths. Many food manufacturers have already phased out trans fats since new nutrition labeling requirements were introduced by the FDA in 2006; plus an increasing number of local laws have banned them.


Mercer County, NJ

Humans like to think of themselves as unique when it comes to taking vows of togetherness. But a surprising number of other species in the animal kingdom provide sterling examples of fidelity, monogamy and lifelong pairing. Gibbons, of the ape family, are the nearest relatives to humans that mate for life. They form extremely strong pairings and both sexes are on relatively equal footing in their relationships. Bald eagles, our national emblem, typically mate for life, except in the event of a partner’s inability to procreate. Wolves, often portrayed as tricksters in folklore, conduct a family life more loyal than many human relationships. Wolf packs typically comprise a male, a female and their offspring, making them akin to a human nuclear family. Swans form monogamous pair bonds that last for many years or even for life. Their loyalty is so storied that the image of two swans swimming with their necks entwined in the shape of a heart has become a universal symbol of true love. French angelfish are seldom found far from their mate, because they live, travel and even hunt in pairs. The fish form monogamous relationships that often last as long as both individuals are alive. In fact, they act as a team to vigorously defend their territory against neighboring pairs. Other examples include albatrosses, African antelopes, black vultures, Malagasy giant rats, prairie voles, sandhill cranes, termites and, of course, turtle doves. To view images, visit and MatesSlideshow.

Sweet Solution

Turning Agri-Waste to Good Use Cement that incorporates waste ash from sugar production is not only stronger than ordinary cement, it also qualifies as a greener building material. Researchers at the Niels Bohr Institute at the University of Copenhagen, in Denmark, have found that cement made with sugar cane ash mixed in is stronger, can withstand higher pressure and crumbles less than ordinary cement. In countries where sugar cane is grown, such as Cuba and Brazil, this agricultural waste product has been added to cement for years. Extracting sugar from the cane typically leaves a lot of fiber waste that is burned into ash, discarded and then requires disposal. Using sugar cane ash also can lower the energy use and carbon footprint of cement production. Heloisa Bordallo, a researcher at the Institute, comments, “You are saving both CO2 emissions and raw materials.” Source:

Star Trekking

Voyager 1 Enters Interstellar Space The U.S. National Aeronautics and Space Agency (NASA) recently confirmed that after 36 years, the Voyager 1 probe crossed the boundary of the heliosphere, or the extent of our Sun’s influence, a year ago. It’s the first manmade object to venture into interstellar space. At a distance of about 12 billion miles from the Sun, the latest data indicates that Voyager 1 has been traveling through the plasma, or ionized gas, present in the space between stars. The journal Science notes that this corroborates the existence of a longhypothesized boundary between the solar plasma and the interstellar plasma. Voyager 2, a companion craft launched at the same time, is also expected to break the barrier. Source:

Loving Local

Small Retailers Gaining Force While online mega-shopping malls have decimated many types of small businesses around the country, the Business Alliance for Local Living Economies notes that independent bookstores are doing surprisingly well. For the last four years, their number and total sales have grown, despite the recent recession. In 2009, citizens patronized 1,651 independent bookstores in the United States; today their number exceeds 1,900. In addition, local coffee shops have grown faster than the largest chain’s storefronts. Bakers and specialty food purveyors, independent pharmacies and pet, fabric and stationery stores are growing, too. One reason for the good news is the “buy local” ethic promoted by groups such as the American Independent Business Alliance. Last year, sales at independent businesses in cities benefitting from these campaigns grew 8.6 percent; those without them still increased 3.4 percent. Independents are winning customer loyalty in part by hosting and sponsoring events that enrich the community. The public is realizing that buying local supports area families, keeps more dollars circulating locally and strengthens a healthy sense of community that benefits everyone. Source:

Greenwashing Watchdog Dr. Bronner Clears Out Imposters

The nonprofit manufacturer of Dr. Bronner’s Magic Soaps (, known in the U.S. for more than 50 years for its devotion to purity and information-crammed product labels, has taken to filing lawsuits against companies that don’t live up to health claims or that employ deceptive greenwashing tactics. One primary focus is the cosmetics industry’s use of so-called “organic” ingredients. Company president David Bronner reports, “About 80 percent of these companies simply dropped their claims; the others reformulated.” He also lobbies for labeling of genetically modified organisms (GMO) in Washington State. Source:

Green Finance

Canada Shows the Way via Mass Transit The government of Ontario, Canada, is issuing “green bonds” to fund the expansion of mass transit infrastructure in the province. Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne says, “Green bonds are a great tool to raise capital for a project with specific environmental benefits. The worldwide market for green bonds in the last year has doubled; it’s now estimated to be more than $346 billion in U.S. dollars.” Source:

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Shop Class Teaches Sustainability According to a report in The Boston Globe, some American schools regret that they replaced woodshops with high-tech educational forums in the 1990s. Shop class is valuable for students that may underperform in traditional academic settings and empowers them to learn and produce tangible results. Doug Stowe, a woodworker and teacher in Eureka Springs, Arkansas, writes in, “Our society has inadvertently created a dependent generation of young people that don’t know how to fix things and lack even the most basic manual competence. Putting girls and boys into shop class would challenge rampant consumerism because a person is less inclined to throw out a piece of furniture and buy a replacement if they know how to fix it. “With so many cheap imports flooding stores, it’s difficult for students to gain perspective on the resources and time required to create a piece of furniture, so shop class can teach students to appreciate long-lasting quality and its accompanying fair price tag. In this way, shop class is linked to sustainability.” Source:

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Favorite destination beach resorts around the world have seen huge increases in jellyfish “bloom” activity. “Jellyfish and tourism are not happy bedfellows,” says Dr. Lisa-ann Gershwin, Ph.D., a pioneering marine biologist and author of Stung! On Jellyfish Blooms and the Future of the Ocean. “In Florida, it’s not uncommon in recent years for a half a million people to be stung during an outbreak.” A report, Review of Jellyfish Blooms in the Mediterranean and Black Sea, written by Fernando Borea for the General Fisheries Commission for the Mediterranean and the United Nations, cites both global warming and overfishing, which removes jellyfish predators, as causes for recent jellyfish population explosions. Of the more than 2,000 species of jellyfish swimming through the world’s waters, most are completely harmless. However, human contact with some types can cause excruciating pain, and the box jellyfish is among the handful of species that have caused fatalities around the globe. Gershwin says, “Australia is upfront about its jellyfish dangers and also assertive in safety management, whereas other places have them, but may understand less about them or in some cases, just don’t want to say. Tourists need to be aware of local hazards and not expect to necessarily be provided with pertinent information.” Source: CNN


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True Treasures Avert Eco-Harm Done right, Valentine’s Day and gifts of jewelry go together like love and marriage. Those that have no desire to support the unsafe worker conditions, widespread price fixing and waste associated with gold mining, also linked to pollution, financing wars and terrorism, look for better options. They wish to have no part in underwriting standard ring-making practices which, according to the Worldwatch Institute, create tons of toxic mining waste that can persist for decades and enter the food chain. Happily, there are far more ethical choices. Alternate routes. Among many sustainable and socially responsible options, jewelry made from recycled gold, silver and titanium plus synthetic gemstones is offered by GreenKarat ( while Brilliant Earth ( provides antiques and also custom makes or helps customers create their own treasured gifts utilizing minerals from pure sources; the company also donates 5 percent of its profits to support communities that have suffered from unethical industry practices. Heirlooms. A son or grandson gifting a grandmother’s or mother’s cherished piece of jewelry to a spouse or girlfriend expresses a tradition of love and family connectivity, plus gives new life to precious items. Michelle Ercanbrack, a family historian at, recommends using a family-treasured diamond in a more modern setting or making a ring into a pendant. “Heirlooms link the present to the past—they are part of a family narrative that can increase the present generation’s sense of belonging and identity,” she says. Native American jewelry. Deborah Nelson, owner of Silver Eagle Gallery, in Naples, Florida, and Highlands, North Carolina, attests that artful jewelry by Native Americans supports their culture and forges a connection to Americana with timeless appeal. Bracelets made by Navajo Indians incorporate turquoise pieces often linked together or set in mosaic form on a sterling band. Sterling silver and golden amber sunburst rings also make good gifts. “The handmade attention to detail is a stark contrast to what’s cast in a mold overseas,” says Nelson.

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RETHINKING HEART HEALTH Pioneering Doctors and Patients Reinvent Cardio Care by Linda Sechrist


n 1977, Dr. Dean Ornish began to think beyond an allopathic medicine paradigm that defined the reversal of cardiovascular disease, including coronary heart disease (CHD) and the hypertensive diseases such as heart failure and stroke, as physiologically implausible. Undaunted by the challenge of funding his research, he pushed forward. Results of his foundational 1986 to 1992 Lifestyle Heart Trial, published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, proved that individuals with preexisting coronary atherosclerosis that make intensive, integrated lifestyle changes can begin to experience improvements in their condition after as little as one year without using lipid-lowering drugs. Based on his 30-plus years of clinical research, Ornish and his colleagues further showed that five years of follow-


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ing proper nutrition, fitness and stress management—which must include love and support—can reduce symptoms of CHD and other chronic conditions. He remarks in Love & Survival: 8 Pathways to Intimacy and Health that despite numerous studies showing a medical basis for its occurrence, the reason why CHD is reversible is still the subject of debate. Ornish’s work has paved the way for a growing corps of pioneering integrative physicians successfully collaborating with patients to reduce the leading cause of death for men and women in the United States.

Plaque the Culprit

The cause of cardiovascular disease is arterial plaque, a fine layer of fatty material that forms within the arteries and blocks blood flow. It is largely the result of food and activity choices,

plus the degree of inflammation in the arteries. Dr. Steven Masley’s three keys to improving heart health highlighted in his book, The 30-Day Heart Tune-Up, and an upcoming PBS special, concern lifestyle factors capable of shrinking plaque, improving circulation and strengthening the heartbeat. “Abnormal plaque growth is preventable 90 percent of the time,” states the president of Masley Optimal Health Center, in St. Petersburg, Florida. While conducting research on the heart health of nearly 1,000 patients over a period of 20 years, Masley suspected that the traditional assessment approach of measuring cholesterol, blood sugar and blood pressure didn’t effectively address the biochemistry within arteries. Testing intima-media thickness (IMT) using a simple 10-minute external ultrasound confirmed it. The test bounces high-frequency sound waves to measure the thickness of the carotid arteries’ innermost two layers on either side of the neck. “This valuable tool allows for an estimate of arterial age. A healthy, young cardiovascular system has less plaque and an unhealthy, old one has more,” advises Masley. IMT, a useful tool for preventing future heart attacks and strokes, differs from standard carotid Doppler ultrasound, which looks for artery obstructions suggesting surgery. A practitioner of functional medicine, Masley explains heart-related diagnoses differently than his allopathic counterparts. “Rather than diagnosing high blood pressure as hypertension, I categorize it as not enough exercise, not enough fruits and vegetables, high emotional stress and excessive body fat.” To optimize heart health, Masley employs a broad, holistic matrix of options that enhance the cardiovascular system—the interactions among diet, activity level, weight, environmental toxins, hormones, stress and bio-chemical factors such as blood sugar control and inflammation levels. He prescribes heart-healing foods that simultaneously help to manage the aging process, following a customized, heart-friendly supplement plan; engag-

Love and intimacy are at the root of what makes us sick and what makes us well, what causes sadness and what brings happiness, what makes us suffer and what leads to healing. ~ Dr. Dean Ornish, Love & Survival ing in exercise that strengthens the heart and arteries; and learning how to better manage stress. He contends that cardiovascular events remain the top cause of death because individuals are largely unaware of treatment options before they get into trouble. More, “Most people falsely assume that their condition has been fixed with a medical procedure and/or drugs, and that a lifestyle change isn’t necessary.”

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Dr. Stephen Sinatra, an integrative cardiologist, anti-aging specialist and bioenergetics psychotherapist in Manchester, Connecticut, has also shifted his heart health paradigm. He now prescribes a combination of conventional medicine, food, supplements, mind/body strategies and natural healing methods. His book, Heartbreak and Heart Disease: A Mind/ Body Prescription for Healing the Heart, relates many inspiring case histories that address the psycho-emotional component of heart health and illustrate how to repair and reopen a broken heart by releasing long-repressed emotions. Following two years of Gestalt psychotherapy training and seven years of bioenergetics training, Sinatra likewise realized that heartbreak was one of the major causes of heart disease. An expert in the field of natural cardiology, he had once believed that cholesterol and fat were the primary causes before 40 years of treatment research taught him otherwise. “Cholesterol is not the reason for heart disease,” advises Sinatra, founder of and author of The Great Cholesterol Myth. “The body produces and needs cholesterol to convert sunlight to vitamin D, to make sex hormones, vital semipermeable membranes for the body’s trillions of cells, plus bile salts for digestion. Even your brain makes and uses cholesterol to build connections between the neurons that facilitate learning and memory.”

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Sinatra names the real perpetrators of heart disease—stress, inflammation and overeating sugar and processed foods containing saturated fat. He counsels that the heart benefits less from a low-fat, high-carbohydrate diet than one low in carbohydrates and higher in healthy fats, overturning widespread medical mantras. Also, a high-fructose, high-grain carbohydrate diet raises triglycerides, increases the risk of metabolic syndrome and contributes to insulin resistance, causing the liver to produce more cholesterol, as well as more inflammatory, natural awakenings

February 2014


It is no coincidence that we address our physical and emotional heart by the same name. Our physical heart usually reflects the state of our emotional heart, and vice versa. ~ Dr. James Forleo low-density lipoprotein cholesterol (LDL) particles, all of which increase the risk for CHD, diabetes and stroke. The American Heart Association (AHA) estimates that metabolic syndrome, which affects nearly 35 percent of American adults, may overtake smoking as the leading risk factor for CHD. The AHA currently is focused on increasing awareness that heart disease is the number one killer of women. Its Go Red for Women campaign emphasizes the vital need to take preventive basic actions, including adopting an exercise routine, healthier diet and doctor visits for appropriate non-invasive tests.

Essential Spirit

Dr. James Forleo, a chiropractor in Durango, Colorado, with 30-plus years of clinical experience, maintains that health is simple, disease is complicated (also the title of his book). He counsels patients, “If mental stress is present in your life, you owe it to your cardiovascular system to change to a healthier lifestyle. Your life may depend on it.” Forleo has recognized that an individual’s state of mind can be a big help or hindrance in maintaining a healthy heart. “The heart represents a different realm of experience entirely, one

that cannot be explained by logic and reason,” comments Forleo. He champions the link between maintaining normal spinal function and healthy heart function, along with supporting the inner presence of Spirit, which he calls the healthy heart’s ultimate elixir. “Its essence relaxes the heart, opens the mind to possibilities greater than itself and provides the perspective that the heart and the mind are complementary,” he observes. He explains that when our emotions get bottled up, something in our heart or circulation has to give. “If you or someone you know experiences heart problems, chances are that unresolved emotions lie directly below the surface,” he says. “There are exceptions, and genetic problems can explain many heart defects, but heart problems don’t usually show up unless emotions are involved.” Forleo’s concept is supported by the work of Rollin McCraty, Ph.D., executive vice president and director of research at California’s Institute of HeartMath. His research papers include The Energetic Heart: Bioelectromagnetic Interactions Within and Between People. “Today, evidence suggests that the

Write it on your heart

that every day is the best day in the year. ~Ralph Waldo Emerson

heart may play a particularly important role in emotional experience. Research in the relatively new discipline of neurocardiology has confirmed that the heart is a sensory organ and acts as a sophisticated information encoding and processing center that learns, remembers and makes independent functional decisions that don’t involve the cerebral cortex,” advises McCraty.

To Happy Hearts

Pioneering integrative medical doctors Masley, Sinatra, Forleo and Mona Lisa Schultz, who also holds a Ph.D. in behavioral neuroscience, agree that in matters of heart disease, emotions take center stage. Schultz, who recently co-authored All is Well: Heal Your Body with Medicine, Affirmations and Intuition, with Louise L. Hay, a leading founder of the self-help movement, applies her 25 years of experience as a medical intuitive with the best of Western clinical science, brain research and energy medicine. Shultz observes, “Every illness has an emotional component, which tells us intuitively that something or someone in our life or environment is out of balance and needs to be addressed. Our use of language—such as frustration makes our heart race, anger boils our blood—and our common sense are telling us what we don’t need more studies to confirm. If we can’t deal with our anger in a timely fashion, name our feelings, respond effectively and release them, we increase our chance of illness, ranging from hypertension to cardiovascular events.” According to the American Journal of Cardiology, the U.S. spends 10 percent of all healthcare dollars for cardiovascular disease prevention and medical management versus 90 percent on medical treatment procedures and hospital care. For individuals interested in taking charge of their heart health, working with a physician that embraces the emerging paradigm of integrative lifestyle changes and prevention can be a drug-free, lifesaving decision. Linda Sechrist is the senior staff writer for Natural Awakenings. Visit for full interviews.


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February 2014



Simple Stress Busters Natural Ways to Slide into a State of Calmness by Kathleen Barnes


e all encounter everyday stressors and usually find our own ways of defusing them. However, when chronic stress remains unresolved, it extracts a toll on health that may range from heart disease and stroke to obesity, gastrointestinal problems and depression. Thankfully, Natural Awakenings has uncovered inviting ways to regularly de-stress that naturally make us feel good. Here are some refreshing ideas for immediate rest and relaxation. Eat Mindfully. Chocolate can be an excellent antidote to stress-related binge eating, advises Dr. Susan Lord, an integrative physician in Great Barrington, Massachusetts, who leads mind-body medicine programs at the Kripalu Center for Yoga & Health, in Stockbridge. “We rarely eat mindfully,” comments Lord. “We’re usually gulping down our food while watching TV, arguing with the kids or reading a book.” She often leads a meditation in which participants are allotted one small piece of chocolate that they must eat slowly and consciously. “Most people discover they have never really tasted their food,” she says. “They are pleasantly surprised to discover that they feel satiated and satisfied on every level.” Lord’s teaching is supported by a study from an Oregon Research Institute affiliate in Albuquerque, New Mexico, showing that people lost


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significant amounts of weight by eating slowly and mindfully. Accordingly, Kripalu has encouraged eating in silence for nearly 40 years, a practice Lord heartily recommends to her patients for one meal a day. Walk a labyrinth. A meditative walk on a labyrinth may be just what the doctor ordered, says physician Esther Sternberg, professor of medicine and research director at the Arizona Center for Integrative Medicine at the University of Arizona, in Tucson. “A labyrinth differs from a maze, which has high walls and many dead ends,” notes Sternberg. “Walking a maze is inevitably stressful; a labyrinth has the exact opposite effect. There is only one path in and one path out. You go to the middle, meditate and walk back out. It’s a perfectly calming walking meditation.” In physiological terms, Sternberg explains, the deep breathing induced by labyrinth walking activates the vagus nerve, which prompts relaxation. It does this by interrupting the brain’s stress response and halting the release of adrenaline and the stress hormone cortisol from the adrenal glands. Our ancestors built labyrinths as early as 4,000 BCE. They exist today in churches, healing centers and backyards all over the world. Finger labyrinths, even as simple as an outline printed on a piece of paper, also have proved to be effective relaxation tools, says Neal

Harris, a licensed clinical professional counselor in Barrington, Illinois. His study confirming its relaxing effects was published in the Annals of Psychotherapy & Integrative Health. Shake (or laugh) it off. Anyone that has ever felt like exploding from tight shoulders, indigestion, headaches or other conditions caused by accumulated stress can benefit from Lord’s recommendation to experience a whole-body shake. “Just stand with your feet firmly planted and start shaking—first your feet, then your legs, arms, head and neck and eventually, your whole body—for at least two or three minutes,” she counsels. “You’ll shake off all of that tension, energize every cell and probably start laughing, another great stress reliever.” A good belly laugh is likewise a powerful stress reliever, according to a study by researchers at Indiana State University, in Terra Haute, published in Alternative Therapies in Health and Medicine. Results also showed that laughter increased production of the protective cells that boost immune function. Create a memory garden. For Sternberg, her personal place of peace is an unconscious re-creation combining the sights and smells of her grand-

mother’s garden with the comfortable “at home” feeling of her parents’ deck and mementos from a happy time in Crete. At the center of Sternberg’s happy memories are fragrant jasmine and gardenia trees, lavender and basil, all reminders of happy times in her life. She recalls, “It wasn’t until I was finished that I realized what I had done.” A review of relevant science reported in Neural Plasticity explains that the brain’s hippocampus region, a seat of memory, especially related to place, also normally regulates the production of cortisol. But an excess of cortisol due to stress can impair its memory functions. “When we are in a place that brings happy memories to mind, we let go of stress and stop the release of cortisol,” says Sternberg. “It helps to just think of a place where we have been happy.” She recommends creating a home space with some plants on a windowsill, photos of happy family gatherings, fabrics or paint in beloved colors and perhaps inherited items that trigger fond memories.

Breathe Deeply Perform this subtle de-stressor while in line at the market or driving. It slows heart rate, oxygenates the body, improves mental clarity and has a relaxing effect on the nervous system. n Sit or stand straight. n Put the tip of the tongue against the ridge of tissue just behind the upper front teeth, and keep it there throughout the entire exercise. n Inhale through the nose for a count of four. n Hold each breath for a count of seven. n Exhale completely through the mouth with a whoosh sound for a count of eight. n Repeat three more times. Source:

Kathleen Barnes is the author of numerous natural health books, including 10 Best Ways to Manage Stress. Connect at

Music Soothes the Soul Dozens of studies from leading institutions like Brandeis University, in Waltham, Massachusetts, the Elizabeth Seton Pediatric Center, in Yonkers, New York, and Colorado State University, in Fort Collins, show that music can offset stress, relieve pain, lower blood pressure, improve immune function and support restful sleep. So play a tune or two of much-loved music and let the calming effects induce a state of relaxation. According to research from the American Society of Hypertension, classical music, the blues and other soothing music work best because they cause the body to release endorphins and slow breathing rates. It’s better yet if our favorite music inspires stress-releasing body movement.

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February 2014



Home Safe Home Practical Pillars of Well-Being by Christa O’Leary

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Creating an inspired and healthy home environment soothes the soul and recharges our proverbial batteries. Making healthful choices in the products we use and consume helps ensure we retain a healthy body and vibrant living in an era when we are inundated with disease-producing toxins in our homes, food, air and water. Applying simple solutions to slow down helps us maintain a calm mind amidst the frenetic pace of daily life. Periodically unplugging from the instant demands of technology is a good first step. Tuning into our life purpose and sharing it with others allows us to shine. We naturally radiate our inner light in ever-expanding ways.

Mindful Strategies

A study published by the International Academy for Design and Health shows 22

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that because our home influences us on many levels, the setting is continually either supporting or depleting its occupants. Consciously creating and sustaining a nurturing environment fortifies the roots from which family members evolve and grow. Experience shows us how improving our immediate surroundings, ranging from our wardrobe to household furnishings, helps to manifest positive internal transformations. The activity likewise reflects our inner landscape, allowing us to take a step back and observe how we are changing and hope to change. That’s why we periodically feel impelled to clear unsettling clutter from our private spaces. It’s an irritant that disrupts order and our sense of beauty; even when it’s stashed in drawers and closets, we still know it’s there. It competes for attention and distracts our focus. A recently relocated design client felt that her new house was beautiful, but didn’t feel like a home. The woman

Consciously creating and sustaining a nurturing environment fortifies the roots from which family members evolve and grow. explained that when she was there, she was short-tempered with her kids, a sharp contrast to her usual demeanor. She yearned to love her home, enjoy her kids and live vibrantly. A key part of the solution was tackling the home’s mudroom entrance that was cluttered with the kids’ detritus, a condition that irritated her the minute she walked through the door. Many of the home products we buy contain disquieting, hidden elements. Understanding which ingredients are hazardous is imperative to maintaining a safe home environment. Key decisions range from the choice of carpets, couches and bedding to cleaning products, laundry solutions and air fresheners. Knowing the products we use are healthful enhances peace of mind. As one homeowner said, “I am so relieved to have a better understanding of what products I shouldn’t bring home. I was so scared before that I just ignored the idea that chemicals could be harmful.” Being informed and alert to the composition of the items we bring into our home—including food—is vital. More than 80,000 chemicals make up the ingredients in commonly available products that end up in the typical American home, and a large portion of them are toxic. Nearly 20 percent of the chemicals are not divulged, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA). The EPA also reports that the average person holds more than 700 toxic chemicals in their body. We inhale myriad chemical byproducts that fill the air both indoors and out, plus ingest numerous toxins in the foods and beverages we consume. Once absorbed, they remain in the body unless flushed out, throwing it out of balance and, as widespread research shows, causing a broad range of diseases. reports that the psychological impacts of feeling stressed, helpless and overwhelmed by the fear of lurking poisons can directly influence our physical health. Making informed choices can alleviate such feelings. It only requires taking a series of small and manageable, progressive steps to create our own style of a healthy and harmonious home life. On a spiritual level, we can rest assured that such caring for our inner temple and larger environment supports a greater good and fosters a deeper connection to life’s Source. We feel more physically, psychologically and spiritually vibrant. Our home becomes a vital wellspring that, cleaned and furnished with holistic awareness, continually refreshes us. Christa O’Leary is founder and CEO of Home in Harmony, Inc., combining expertise in marriage and family therapy, interior design and green living. Her book, Home in Harmony Lifestyle: Designing an Inspired Life, will be released in November. Connect at

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Quiet Kids in a Noisy World Bringing Out the Best in Introverts by Meredith Montgomery


abrielle Perillo’s daughter, A’ngel, 11, is a deep thinker, compassionate for all beings (human and not), a defender of justice, spiritual and extremely creative. She pursues any subject she studies with focus and passion. Although other children are naturally drawn to her, A’ngel, a born introvert, generally prefers to play quietly on her own. At first, her mother worried that her daughter was being insensitive to others and not paying attention to her surroundings. But once Mom released her own emotional projections, she recognized how happy her daughter is in her own space and began to appreciate the benefits of this independence. At least a third of Americans are introverts, yet many parents are prone to mischaracterize their more private children as antisocial, self-centered and lonely. Susan Cain, a former corporate attorney and author of Quiet: The Power of Introverts in a World That Can’t Stop Talking, explains, “Introverts are not antisocial, they just prefer 24

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socializing in lower-key ways.” They usually form a few deep and intimate relationships compared to extroverts that often cultivate many friends. Christine Fonseca, an educational psychologist and author of Quiet Kids, notes the danger in misunderstanding a child’s hesitancy or reserved nature. “Kids can benefit from understanding who they are and what it means to be an introvert. Otherwise, they may compare themselves to their extrovert friends and feel deficient.” Introverts own many exceptional qualities. They tend to be deep thinkers able to work independently in highly creative and innovative ways. They may prefer to learn a lot about a few topics instead of a little about many different areas. Often described as empathetic, conscientious and self-aware, introverts make authentic leaders and effective managers as adults. Introvert and extrovert temperaments are distinguished by how individuals generate energy. Introverts process the world and recharge

through solitude; many can flourish in social situations as long as they can rejuvenate by being on their own. Fonseca notes a defining difference in physiology. “Introverts use part of the nervous system that has a long pathway from point A to point B, so it takes them longer to process information.” Cain adds, “Introverts also usually have a longer runway than others, so it takes them longer to take off and fly. It’s crucial that the message they’re receiving from parents and teachers is, ‘That’s okay.’” It’s important that parents balance how they honor a child’s preferences with teaching them skills to thrive. “Don’t expect them to follow the gang,” says Cain. “Instead, encourage them to follow their passions.” Parents can empower children with tools to increase their comfort zone. If youngsters have difficulty speaking up in class, it helps to prepare them with what they want to say beforehand. Cain notes that this lessens anxiety and when they are able to speak up, they’ll feel

like part of the class. Simple tips can offer relief in uncomfortable social situations. Perillo reinforces social manners before she and A’ngel arrive at an event. She focuses on the greetings, reminding her to extend her hand first, speak clearly, make eye contact and smile. Also, because self-promotion doesn’t come naturally to introverts, they often need coaching to highlight their own assets when applying for a club, college or job. Fonseca encourages families to embrace digital technology. She observes, “Most introverts are extroverts online. While face-to-face communication tends to drain them, that doesn’t happen as much online, plus it’s easier to feel more adept socially there.” They’ll still need to disconnect and renew after socializing online, so it’s important to set usage boundaries. Fonseca, who has one introverted and one extroverted child, facilitates dialogue that teaches each of them to communicate with their peers about

their needs. “My introvert tells her extrovert friends not to take offense if she needs to take quiet time alone. They offer each other a perspective that makes their own point of view more well-rounded.” From a neuropsychological perspective, introverts and extroverts can learn from each other, as well. According to Fonseca, extroverts that habitually activate their sympathetic nervous system (“fight-or-flight”) can experience burnout if they don’t learn how to slow down and be calm. However, introverts, relying mostly on their parasympathetic system (“rest and digest”), can be overly calm and slow to respond to situations. Fonseca notes, “It’s not about one temperament being more positive than the other; it’s about understanding who everyone is, their authentic self and finding balance.” Meredith Montgomery is the publisher of Natural Awakenings Mobile/Baldwin, AL (

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February 2014


Coming Next Month


CHOCOLATE AS HEALTH FOOD Boosting Diets and Heart Health by Judith Fertig


The Latest

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esearch tells us that 14 out of any 10 individuals like chocolate,” quips cartoonist Sandra Boynton. American chocolate lovers buy 58 million-plus pounds around Valentine’s Day, according to Nielsen Research. Ideally, the dark treat would be as healthy as a salad or an apple. Fortunately, accumulating research is on the way to giving plantbased chocolate superfood status. All chocolate starts with cacao beans, seeds from the pods of the tropical cacao tree that thrives only in hot, rainy climates in Africa, Indonesia and South America. Local soil and climate conditions determine flavor characteristics, much as with grapes. Harvested beans are fermented to create the chocolate taste and then dried. Afterwards, chocolate makers add brand-specific ingredients to the cacao solids. “The percentage number on a bar’s wrapper represents the weight that actually comes from the cacao bean content,” says Robert L. Wolke, professor emeritus of chemistry at the University of Pittsburgh and author of

What Einstein Told His Cook: Kitchen Science Explained. “The higher the number, the lower the percentage of sugar and the less sweet, more bitter and complex the flavor.” This is significant because dark chocolate contains higher levels of antioxidants which can help reduce cell damage, according to the Integrative Medicine Department at the University of Michigan, in Ann Arbor. Alex Whitmore, founder of Taza Chocolate, in Somerville, Massachusetts, recently had one of its bars lab tested for antioxidant levels, called ORAC, or oxygen radical absorption capacity; the higher the value, the more antioxidants. Taza Chocolate’s 80% Dark Bar had a 65 percent higher ORAC than Himalayan goji berries, famed for being a superfood. “This is very high for a chocolate bar,” notes Whitmore. Cocoa also serves as a superfood for cardiovascular and metabolic health, report two recent studies from separate teams of Harvard School of Public Health researchers. A 2012 meta-analysis of clinical trials published in the American Journal of Clini-

cal Nutrition concluded that consuming dark, unsweetened cocoa powder and dark chocolate can improve blood pressure, vascular dilation and cholesterol levels, plus reduce metabolic precursors like diabetes that can lead to heart disease. In 2011, Eric Ding, Ph.D., a Harvard School of Public Health epidemiologist and nutrition scientist, reviewed short-term trials of subjects ingesting 400 to 500 mg per day of flavonoid-rich cocoa, which he equates to 33 bars of milk chocolate or eight bars of dark chocolate. While Ding feels this is an unreasonable amount to eat because of the extra calories from sugar and fat, he states, “Supplements with concentrated cocoa flavonoids may perhaps be helpful for garnering the benefits discovered. The key is getting the benefits for heart disease while avoiding the calories, and for that, chocolate bars are not likely the best solution.” Another observational study published in Nutrition shows that eating dark chocolate might help keep the pounds off for teenagers. Researchers with the Healthy Lifestyle in Europe by Nutrition in Adolescence program at the University of Zaragoza, in Spain, knew that chocolate consumption in adults already had been linked to lower body mass index. They found that chocolate consumption was also associated with lower total and midsection fat in European adolescents, reports Sayer Ji, founder of, a natural health research database. “The quality and cocoa content they used in their research is probably much higher than in America,” says Ji. “From my perspective, it appears that even when researchers don’t control for type, the results across the board are rather startling. Even American subjects, presumably eating common milk chocolate bars, see benefits.” So, this Valentine’s Day—and every day—we can happily relish that one-ounce piece of artisan dark chocolate melting slowly in our mouth and know we’re doing it for pleasure and for health. Judith Fertig blogs at AlfrescoFoodAnd from Overland Park, KS.

Chocolate Cookery Vegan Chocolate Pie

Serve this with fresh raspberries and enjoy a little romance. Yields 8 servings Chocolate Wafer Crust 6½ oz dairy-free chocolate wafer cookies, crushed into fine crumbs 1 Tbsp maple or date sugar 3 oz vegan buttery stick (such as Earth Balance), melted and slightly cooled Chocolate Filling 13 oz dairy-free semisweet chocolate chips (such as Ghirardelli) 1 /3 cup strong brewed coffee 1 tsp vanilla extract 1 lb silken tofu, drained 1 Tbsp agave 1 (9-in) prepared chocolate wafer crust Preheat the oven to 350° F. For the crust, combine the cookie crumbs, sugar and melted vegan buttery stick. Press this mixture firmly and evenly into the bottom, up the sides and just over the lip of a 9-inch metal pie pan. Bake on the middle rack of the oven until the crust is set and appears dry, 18 to 20 minutes. Remove from the oven and cool completely, about 1 hour.

For the filling, melt the chocolate chips with the coffee and vanilla in a medium metal bowl set over a saucepan of simmering water, stirring often with a spatula. Combine the tofu, melted chocolate mixture and agave in a blender or food processor until smooth, about 1 minute. Pour the filling into the crust and refrigerate for 2 hours or until the filling becomes firm.

Vegan Hot Chocolate

A comforting way to enjoy the benefits of chocolate on a cold day. Yields 4 servings 2½ cups plain rice milk 3 Tbsp maple or date sugar 3 Tbsp unsweetened cocoa powder ½ tsp salt ½ tsp vanilla extract 1 pinch ground cinnamon 1 pinch cayenne pepper Bring the rice milk, sugar, cocoa powder, salt, vanilla extract, cinnamon and cayenne pepper to a simmer in a saucepan over medium-high heat. Remove from the heat and whisk until frothy. Serve immediately. Source: Recipes courtesy of Judith Fertig

Chocolate Artistry Small-batch, artisan chocolate makers strive to make delicious chocolate in the purest, most ethical and sustainable ways possible. They often travel to meet the growers to source the best cacao beans (organic preferred), use fair trade principles and take a personal interest in making fine chocolate without filler ingredients. Here is a partial list of conscientious members of Craft Chocolate Makers of America: Amano Artisan Chocolate, Askinosie Chocolate, DeVries Chocolate, Patric Chocolate, Taza Chocolate, natural awakenings

February 2014


fitbody The key to Spin’s continuity may be in moving cycling back to its origins— re-educating participants about how best to use Spinning to maximize desired results for body, mind and spirit.

CYCLES OF SPIN Returning to its Heart-Healthy Origins by Janet Osen


ike many newly minted sports, “Spin” has at its center a near-mythical figure: its creator, Jonathan Goldstein—better known as Johnny G—by most accounts a unique eccentric with an unheralded passion for cycling. In 1987, while training for the renowned The Race Across America bike event, a mega-marathon 3,100mile race from Los Angeles to New York, Goldstein was struck by a car and nearly killed. It produced an epiphany: Building an indoor bike simulating the outdoor experience would create a novel workout that would incorporate cardio training and emphasize a mindbody connection. With the formation of Mad Dogg Athletics in 1994, the Spinning craze began rolling. Rolling Stone magazine named it the newest hot exercise and by 1996 there were 1,000-plus Spinning centers in 30 countries.

True to Form

Conceived as a form of cardio biofeedback, the activity keyed on training 28

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the heart muscle aerobically using a heart monitor. The original goal was to provide an “aerobic base” by working at 65 to 80 percent of one’s maximum heart rate, making the heart a more effective pump and increasing oxygen levels throughout the body. The Spin program follows the principle that participants will train aerobically for six to 12 weeks prior to a “Race Day”—a special ride performed at a steady anaerobic threshold generally at 85 to 95 percent of maximum heart rate. Anaerobic threshold, or AT, is the point at which the body accumulates lactic acid in the muscles faster that it can be removed. “Aerobic base building creates a strong foundation for increasing one’s lactate threshold,” explains Lorey Pro, a master Spin instructor and assistant director of fitness and wellness at Louisiana State University. “Riders can increase their tolerance for anaerobic exercise.” “The metabolism’s foundation is strengthened by aerobic base building. Without it, the body will fall apart if

the athlete moves right into anaerobic threshold training,” explains Shannon Derby, a master Spin instructor and certified group fitness and personal trainer at Mountain’s Edge Fitness Center, in Boulder, Colorado. In contrast to indoor cycling, Spin requires that exertion rates be correlated to levels based on maximum heart rates, and revolutions per minute (RPMs) or pedal strokes be kept at pre-specified levels. According to Pro, Spin should combine mind and body training by using a variety of heart rate zones to improve health, fitness and performance. Instructors take participants through a series of rides known as Energy Zones, each serving a specific purpose like endurance, strength or recovery. Terri Arends, a master Spin instructor and group fitness director at the Jewish Community Center of Dallas, Texas, attests that without such rides, the aerobic foundation crumbles. She likes to put riders through “kicking Spin rides and moments of Zen that allow riders to let go and find their inner athlete.”

Lost in Translation

In today’s typical Spin class, no one wears a heart monitor. While some gyms and boutique facilities offer endurance or strength rides, most conduct only interval rides featuring top 40 music selections and a loose interpretation of the prescribed movements, positions and cadence rates. “Interval rides tend to get picked most,” observes Derby. “There are many different kinds and they are

fairly easy to teach and well liked, even though that isn’t what the official Spinning program recommends.” Del Lugo, a Spin instructor and fitness professional in Suffern, New York, who works at the nearby Torne Valley Sports Complex and Lifeplex Health Club, says he rarely sees classic Spin done anymore. In Lugo’s world, Spin should be simply a “fun, safe experience with the instructor endeavoring to instill enthusiasm and encouragement.”

Moving Forward

One key indicator of whether a fitness activity is a trend and not a fad is the American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) annual Fitness Trends survey. In 2012, Spin made ACSM’s top 20 list of fitness trends, citing it as “one of the most popular group exercise programs in the commercial sector.” Yet it fell off of ACSM’s list last year. Reviving the original training program may prove helpful in preventing potential Spin burnout. Workouts were originally designed to culminate each week in a meditative, lowimpact recovery ride to allow for rest and recovery, which is pivotal to any successful fitness program. The key to Spin’s continuity may be in moving cycling back to its origins—reeducating participants about how best to use Spinning to maximize desired results for body, mind and spirit. Janet Osen is a freelance writer in Rockland County, NY. She is a certified Spin instructor currently working toward her 200-hour yoga teacher certification.

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February 2014



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Katherine Woodward Thomas on Drawing True Love Our Way by Debra Melani


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fter years of experiencing love going sour, Katherine Woodward Thomas set a goal: She would marry her soul mate within a year. Her quest inspired a surprising awakening that spurred her to look deep inside for the key that would unblock love. Thomas realized the transformation that enabled her success involved clear steps that could help anyone. Today, the licensed psychotherapist and relationship expert has guided thousands toward successful relationships via her national bestseller, Calling in “The One”: 7 Weeks to Attract the Love of Your Life, and subsequent books and seminars.

What catalyzed your Calling in “The One” professional journey? I was 41, a card-carrying member of one of America’s largest-growing groups—the never-marrieds. I had bought into the cultural belief that a woman my age had little chance of finding a great husband. I felt anxious and resigned, trying to come to terms with it, but sad inside. Fortunately, at the time, I was part of a small group supportive of each other’s intentions. So I set the outrageous intention that I would be engaged by my next birthday. I also recognized my longstanding pattern of attracting unavailable men who were engaged, married or alcoholics. A woman in the group said, “Katherine, I will hold that intention with you if you permit me to

hold you accountable to be the woman you would need to be in order to fulfill it.” Her wake-up call turned my focus from running out to find love to going within to discover the barriers I had against it. Thus I began what became the Calling in “The One” process.

How does it differ from other approaches to finding love? Many approaches focus on the external reasons love is elusive, such as all the good men are taken, men don’t like powerful women or just not having met the right person. This approach focuses more on the internal reasons—going within to discover and release one’s own conscious and unconscious barriers. For most of us, a gap exists between how much we think we want love and how much we are actually open and ready to receive it. Until we bridge that gap, we will covertly keep love at bay, and won’t even realize we are doing it.

What are the most common hidden barriers to love? One hidden barrier is resentment. We only resent people to the extent that we’ve given our power away to them. Uncover your role in what happened. Even if it was 97 percent their fault and 3 percent yours, zero in on that 3 percent, because you’ll only be able to trust yourself to love again once you’ve taken that responsibility. If you still feel resentful, you have not yet evolved beyond the person you were before.

Another centers on old agreements—the spoken and unspoken, agreements we make, usually in an emotional time—such as “I’m never going to let myself get hurt again” or “I’ll never love anyone the way I love you.” Such agreements live in our lives as intentions. They may no longer be conscious, yet still set our course. Another has to do with toxic relational dynamics. To find the best partnership, you need to be your best self. Maintaining a toxic dynamic drains personal power, making it hard to move forward in life. It’s vital to evolve out of this debilitating dynamic so you are in the center of your power everywhere in life. The fourth area, and probably the most important, revolves around the core beliefs you hold about both yourself and others. You might have a reasonably clear sense of yourself around money, career and friendship, but your core love identity might cause you to believe yourself unworthy of a quality partner. Identifying and challenging these beliefs is critical in learning how to break free from them, helping to raise your value in your own eyes and thus in others.

You believe the best way to find a needle in a haystack is to become magnetic and allow that needle to find you. How does one become magnetic to love? Being centered in the truth of your own value and the real possibilities you hold for true love is wildly attractive. Love yearns to embrace us, but can’t come to us if it can’t come through us. When we shift into this place of possibility, we can become profoundly magnetic to love. Learn more at, or Explore the qualities possible in an enlightened mate at NaturalAwakenings Freelance journalist Debra Melani is from Lyons, CO. Connect at


HEALING HURT A Hawaiian Mantra Lets Love Back In H

o’oponopono is an ancient Hawaiian huna, a secret to facilitating forgiveness within; or simply, the art of forgiveness. Four healing phrases are employed in a harmonic mantra to help “make things right” or “correct the errors”. It works to cleanse hurt feelings and relieve suffering from being in an unforgiving or unforgiven state. According to the Babylon online dictionary, Ho’oponopono is used to release problems and blocks that cause imbalance, unease and stress in the self; bring peace and balance through physical, mental and spiritual cleansing that involves repentance and transmutation; and create balance, freedom, love, peace and wisdom within individuals, social entities, the world and the universe. Ho’oponopono Forgiveness Mantra I am sorry. Please forgive me. Thank you. I love you. These four forgiveness phrases, both individually and collectively, help heal us and our relationships with others, especially loved ones. Each one melts hearts and heals souls. Going deeper, we can voice this mantra in communing with the divine and see the effect both within and without.

I am sorry for participating in this erroneous memory data. Please forgive me for not seeing the perfection in this moment, and playing back a universal memory I have received within me that is riddled with wrongs and errors. Thank you for cleansing me, others, the world and the universe. I love you. Loving the sweet divine is the greatest power or energy there is in all space. I am now loving everyone involved and affected. I know that my perceptions of them are within me, where this error first occurred and where it can be eradicated. Like planting a seed in soil that grows into nothing of our making, the divine does the work as we allow it to work through us. As we come to consistently use the Ho’oponopono mantra, we may elect to select a special word as a substitute for the whole mantra to use as a touchstone, so that when we say or think this word, we are immediately clear and clean of all the pain associated with any erroneous memory data presented. Our heart is healed and family or friends will return to relationships with a lighter heart. We do not need to understand how it works, only that it does. Source: Adapted from

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February 2014


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Cardiac Care for Pets How to Keep Little Hearts Humming by Dr. Shawn Messonnier


ymptoms that suggest a dog or cat’s heart is not pumping effectively include coughing and fatigue from light exercise. Before the signs are evident, it is far better to check for heart disease during regular twice-yearly visits to the veterinarian. Using a stethoscope, a skilled doctor can pick up telltale heart murmurs during the examination. A fairly common problem with cats, heart disease tends to occur as cardiomyopathy, an issue with the heart muscle. In most dogs, where cardiomyopathy is rare, it usually involves damaged heart valves, resulting in “leaks” that allow blood to flow in both directions. Upon an initial diagnosis of heart disease, one of two mistakes in treatment routinely occur: Either a doctor prescribes strong cardiac medications to “prevent” heart failure from happening (even though no medication has been shown to prevent heart failure), or he takes a wait-and-see approach, only intervening when the disease progresses to irreversible heart failure. The better approach is to do further testing and evaluation at the first sign of a murmur, including chest X-rays, an electrocardiogram (EKG) and a cardiac ultrasound to classify the stage of the disease and determine if conventional medications can help. Follow-up visits every six

months allow the doctor to identify the point at which heart disease has progressed toward impending heart failure. In general, pets with either a diseased or failing heart can benefit from supplements. Individual regimens vary, based on the nature of the patient’s case.


Fish oil contains beneficial docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) and eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) unsaturated omega-3 fatty acids. The principle metabolites derived from the metabolism of EPA and DHA tend to be anti-inflammatory. Contrariwise, omega-6 fatty acids, which are found in warm-weather vegetable oils, produce pro-inflammatory mediators. Because omega-6 and omega-3 fatty acids compete with each other to be converted to active metabolites (pro-inflammatory and antiinflammatory) in the body, decreasing

the intake of omega-6 fatty acids and/ or increasing dietary omega-3 fatty acid levels, available through fish oil, is generally considered beneficial. The differing numbers identifying omega-3 and omega-6 fatty acids simply refer to where the carbon-carbon double bonds are positioned in the molecules. Supplementing with fish oil may also reduce the occurrence of atherosclerosis, thrombosis, coronary heart disease, arrhythmias, heart failure and sudden cardiac death by decreasing inflammation throughout the body, including in the heart.

Coenzyme Q-10

Coenzyme Q10 (CoQ10), also known as ubiquinol or ubiquinone, is a naturally occurring antioxidant synthesized in most tissues in the body. The highest concentrations are in the heart, kidneys, liver and pancreas. In the diet, CoQ10 is found in foods such as organ meats, poultry, fish, meat, nuts, soybean oil, fruits, vegetables, eggs and dairy products. The Professional’s Handbook of Complementary & Alternative Medicines explains that CoQ10 is used in electron transport in mitochondria— small organelles inside cells that convert carbohydrates and fats into energy. It reports that studies in people with hypertension showed a reduction in systolic blood pressure through CoQ10 supplementation. Benefits of such therapy studied in people with a heart that has failed in its pumping ability

showed increased improved heart function and proper dilation of the blood vessels for improved circulation. It is proving to be one of the best nutrients to help an ailing heart.


The herb hawthorn is highly regarded for its suitability in the treatment of heart disease due to its flavonoid and other antioxidant content. It provides several beneficial effects for the heart—helping to maintain a normal heart rhythm with decreased risk of arrhythmias; bolstering the force of heart muscle contraction; increasing coronary blood flow; and decreasing the organ’s energy demands. It acts like angiotensin-1-converting enzyme (ACE) inhibitors such as the medicine Enalapril, used to help regulate blood pressure and reduce the workload of a failing heart. While other therapies can be used to help pet heart patients, these three are a sound starting point. In some cases, they may be suitable instead of medications that can cause side effects to the kidney and liver, or at least allow for smaller doses. Natural remedies provide a gentler alternative. Shawn Messonnier, a doctor of veterinary medicine practicing in Plano, TX, is the award-winning author of The Natural Health Bible for Dogs & Cats and Unexpected Miracles: Hope and Holistic Healing for Pets. For more information, visit

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February 2014






ou may have heard this warning: Keep pets away from chocolate; garlic, onions and chives; Macadamia nuts, grapes, raisins and currants; and alcohol… because if a dog or cat eats even a morsel of these human foods, it could be fatal. Fortunately, the calming counsel of Dr. Carol Osborne, a world-renowned veterinarian and leading authority on alternative and holistic veterinary medicine, offers new understanding: “These foods have the ability to become a toxic threat if continually fed to pets,” she advises, “with the exception of grapes, raisins, currants and alcohol, which should be entirely avoided.” That’s not to say that these foods are good for pets, but most are far from deadly. For example, chocolate contains theobromine which, as a cousin to caffeine, may cause signs of hyperactivity, including an elevated heart rate and/or seizures. Grapes, raisins and currants, if eaten in sufficient quantities, can damage pet kidneys; the exact toxic mechanism remains unknown. Onions and garlic have the potential to damage red blood cells, leading to anemia. So, while we don’t feed these routinely, a little onion powder or garlic 34

Mercer County, NJ

in a pet’s meal or the accidental bite of chocolate off the floor, are generally not issues to cause concern. Osborne explains that liver function in dogs and cats is less efficient in its ability to detoxify certain foods when compared to the liver capabilities of an adult person. “The liver detoxifies what people and pets eat,” she says. “In pets, liver function is similar to that of a child, with a limited ability to metabolize and detoxify certain foods, thereby rendering them potentially toxic.”

Rumors of Harm The concept of killer pet foods escalated into a crisis when Menu Foods, a Canadian-based manufacturer of many pet foods, recalled its products in 2004 and 2007, creating the biggestever pet food recall in U.S. history. The recalled pet foods contained wheat gluten contaminated with two chemicals: melamine (used to make plastics); and cyanuric acid (used to sanitize pool water). Both were added as cost-saving bulk agents. The lethal mix of these two chemicals caused acute kidney failure, resulting in death for 250,000 pets. Menu Foods ultimately paid $24 million to

compensate affected pet owners. “Heightened awareness and demand for quality pet foods skyrocketed after the recalls,” remarks Osborne. “It’s frightening that cyanuric acid is still being legally added to pet food. It artificially boosts protein levels and misleads pet owners as to true protein content, while camouflaging a toxic chemical at the same time. Updated manufacturing guidelines and safety regulations are essential to ensure quality and safety of pet food ingredients. Unfortunately, both are lacking.” She further notes that slaughterhouse floor scraps, considered inedible for human consumption, comprise the bulk of ingredients in pet foods, regardless of the label or price. Clever pet food names are often misleading, she says. Unlike “certified organic,” holistic and natural are marketing terms which, when used on pet food labels, guarantee nothing about content or quality.

A Sound Solution Osborne’s professional experience, training and research validate the fact that feeding our pets homemade foods similar to those we enjoy is a sound, healthy choice. “A meal of chicken, sweet potato and broccoli, for example, is as good for pets as it is for people,” advises Osborne. “Don’t be afraid to prepare meals made of human foods for your pets. In addition to offering honest pet nutrition, it helps curb pricey pet food bills.” Her clients have found that simple recipes save time and money, help to avoid emergency room visits and promote health and wellness. Homemade canine cuisine made of equal portions of a lean protein, such as chicken, turkey, beef, veal, duck, fish or eggs; long-acting carbohydrates, like potatoes, rice, pasta or oatmeal; and fresh vegetables, including broccoli, spinach, green beans, lima beans, peas


and carrots are ideal. For “allergic” dogs, modify to 50 percent protein and 50 percent veggies, cutting the carbs. Cats require more protein than dogs, so 80 percent lean protein and 20 percent veggies is purr-fect. Owners can prepare pet meals raw or cooked. Cooking options include broiling, boiling, frying, baking and grilling. Mix, and add a teaspoon of extra virgin olive oil; the oil enhances the smell and taste of a pet’s food and is a great source of omega-3 fatty acids. Don’t forget to season a pet’s meal so it smells good. The three top flavors most pets enjoy are barbecue, pasta sauce and low-sodium tamari. Osborne balances homemade pet meals with a reputable vitamin-mineral, antioxidant supplement.

ou can prepare a homemade diet for your pet as easily as for your family, according to Dr. Carol Osborne, veterinarian extraordinaire. She notes that these recipes will help keep your family’s furry, four-legged companions happy and healthy. Here are a few of Dr. Carol’s tried-and-true kitchen creations that will treat our beloved pets to fivestar, lip smacking-good nourishment. They’ll thank you for years to come and be barkin’ and purrin’ for more.

Carol Osborne is America’s first veterinarian to be a board certified anti-aging diplomat. She founded the American Pet Institute, created Pet Anti-Aging Wellness Systems (PAAWS) and authored Naturally Healthy Dogs and Naturally Healthy Cats. Her research has pioneered new therapies to treat and prevent age-related degenerative disease and promote optimum health and longevity for pets. Visit


Carla Soviero is a freelance writer in Naples, FL. Contact her at mscarla11


4. In a mixing bowl, combine the ricotta, spinach, parmesan, oregano, nutmeg, pepper and remaining 2 Tbsp of parsley; stir well. 5. Place 2 cups of the tomato sauce mixture in the bottom of a 13-by-9-inch baking dish. Arrange 4 lasagna noodles on top of the sauce. Spread half of the ricotta mixture over the lasagna and sprinkle with 1 cup of the mozzarella. Repeat the layers of sauce, noodles, ricotta and mozzarella. 6. Top with the remaining 2 cups of sauce and 1 cup mozzarella, sprinkled evenly over last layer. 7. Cover the dish loosely with aluminum foil, place it on a baking sheet and bake for 45 minutes. Then remove the foil and bake an additional 20 minutes. Remove the dish from the oven and allow it to stand 10 to 15 minutes or until it reaches room temperature before serving.

Beef & Veggie Laboradoodle Lasagna Makes 8 portions 2 Tbsp olive oil 1 lb ground round beef 5 cups tomato sauce 4 Tbsp chopped fresh Italian parsley 3½ cups ricotta cheese 1 cup chopped cooked spinach, drained ¼ cup freshly grated parmesan cheese 1 Tbsp dried oregano ¾ tsp ground nutmeg Freshly ground black pepper to taste 8 lasagna noodles, cooked until not quite tender 3 cups grated mozzarella cheese 1. Preheat oven to 350° F. 2. Heat the olive oil in a skillet over medium heat. Add the beef, crumbling it into the skillet. Cook; stir occasionally, until it is browned. Drain, and set aside. 3. Place the tomato sauce in a sauce pan. Add the beef and 2 Tbsp parsley, and cook over medium heat for 5 minutes. Remove the pan from the heat.

8. Note: For individual frozen portions, cut the baked lasagna into 8 pieces, placed in freezer containers with lids. Freeze only when cool. To reheat, defrost, cover with aluminum foil to bake at 350° F for 20 minutes.

Sesame Chow-Chow Chicken & Asparagus Pasta Makes 6 portions 8 ounces linguine 3 cloves garlic, minced 1 Tbsp red wine vinegar 1 Tbsp brown sugar 6 Tbsp chunky peanut butter ¼ cup soy sauce 6 Tbsp sesame oil 1 Tbsp hot chili oil 2 boneless, skinned and cooked chicken breast halves 5 Tbsp sesame seeds, toasted 1 pound thin asparagus, trimmed 1 small cucumber, halved, seeded and diced into ¼-inch pieces 1. Bring a large pot of water to a boil. Add the linguine, cook at a rolling boil

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February 2014


until just tender. Drain, rinse under cold water, drain again and set aside in a large mixing bowl.

Shepherd’s Salmon-n-Sesame

2. Place the garlic, vinegar, brown sugar, peanut butter and soy sauce in a food processor. Process for 1 minute. With the motor running, slowly add the sesame and hot chili oils through the feed tube and process until well-blended.

2 Tbsp fresh lime juice 1 Tbsp vegetable oil 1 Tbsp soy sauce 4 salmon steaks (8 oz each) 1 Tbsp sesame seeds ½ tsp celery seeds Sesame butter, chilled

3. Shred the chicken into 2-inch julienne strips, and then toss with the linguine. Add the sauce plus 4 Tbsp of the sesame seeds and toss to coat well. 4. Cut the asparagus on the diagonal into 1-inch lengths. Blanch in a sauce pan of boiling water for 1 minute. Drain, rinse under cold water and pat dry. 5. Place the linguine and chicken in a large, flat serving bowl and arrange the asparagus on top. Sprinkle with cucumber and remaining 1 Tbsp sesame seeds. 6. Serve at room temperature.

Shepherd’s Spicy Breakfast Turkey & Egg Patties

1. Combine the marinade ingredients in a bowl. Add the salmon, turning to coat well in the mixture. Let stand, loosely covered, 1 hour. 2. Preheat oven to 350° F. 3. Spread out the sesame and celery seeds on a baking pan. Place the pan in the oven and toast the seeds until lightly browned, 3 to 5 minutes. Check after 3 minutes; if the seeds are not done, shake the pan and continue to toast, but watch carefully to prevent burning. Remove from the oven and set aside. 4. Broil the salmon steaks 8 minutes per side. Serve with sesame butter. Sprinkle with toasted sesame and celery seeds.

Makes 12 patties 1¼ lbs ground turkey ¼ cup chopped fresh basil leaves ¼ cup chopped fresh parsley 1 clove garlic 1 tsp salt ½ tsp dried thyme leaves ½ tsp ground ginger ½ tsp dried red pepper flakes, crushed Freshly ground black pepper to taste 2 Tbsp dried bread crumbs 1 egg, lightly beaten 2 Tbsp vegetable oil 1. Combine all ingredients except the oil in a large mixing bowl; stir well, but do not over mix. Cover and refrigerate 1 hour. 2. Shape the turkey mixture into 12 patties about 2½ inches in diameter. 3. Heat the oil in a large skillet, brown the patties over medium heat, about 2 minutes per side. Then reduce the heat to medium-low, cover the skillet and continue to cook, turning the patties occasionally, until they are crisp and cooked thoroughly, about 6 minutes. 36

Mercer County, NJ

Feline Creamy Chicken Delight Consists of 80 percent meat, 20 percent veggies 5 oz baked chicken breast 2 Tbsp creamed corn 2 tsp finely grated zucchini 1. Mix all ingredients together, add ¼ tsp extra virgin olive oil to enhances the smell and taste (also a source of essential omega-3 fatty acids). 2. Season with low-sodium tamari sauce (the brown sauce Chinese carryout comes in), which is available at most local grocers.

Purrin’ Salmon Pate 6 oz boneless, skinless salmon ½ cup finely chopped celery 1 envelope unflavored gelatin ¼ cup breadcrumbs 1 organic egg, beaten ½ cup distilled or spring water 1. Preheat oven to 325° F. 2. Mix all ingredients in a bowl. 3. Pack into a small fish-shaped mold and bake for 45 minutes. 4. Serve at room temperature.

Frosty Feline Fruity Delight

FOR CATS Cats are obligatory carnivores, unlike dogs and people, and most turn up their noses at anything that doesn’t offer a taste and smell to their liking. About 5.5 ounces of food per meal, twice a day, is ideal for most cats. Most cats are either meat eaters or fish eaters, although occasionally individuals enjoy meat and fish. Cats like chicken, chicken livers, lamb, beef, turkey, duck, veal and venison; many fish-loving cats relish salmon. Lean meat may be prepared in many ways— boiled, broiled, fried or grilled. Cats also enjoy vegetables such as puréed squash, puréed carrots, creamed corn and white asparagus tips.

2 Tbsp organic yogurt 1 Tbsp raw cut oats ½ cup fresh squeezed orange juice 2 oz fresh berries, mashed ½ mashed banana ¼ minced apple 1. Mix and blend the oats and banana. Add apples, orange juice and yogurt; mix; then add berries. 2. Serve fresh. Alternatively, freeze in ice cube trays and feed 1 fruit cube daily to keep kitty purring for more.

Source: Recipes courtesy of Dr. Carol Osborne.

calendarofevents NOTE: All calendar events must be received via email by the 10th of the month and adhere to our guidelines. Email for guidelines and to submit entries.

SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 1 Groundhog Day Celebration – 1-3pm. Celebrate Groundhog Day by visiting several groundhog burrows and learning about the natural history of these furry weather forecasters. Weather permitting, play a game of hibernation. Hike, warm up by fire, enjoy a warm beverage and make a Groundhog Day craft. Registration required. Cost $5/person. Stony BrookMillstone Watershed Association, 31 Titus Mill Rd, Pennington. 609-737-7592. Shamanic Reiki with Don Julio – 2-6pm. Experience a special one hour reading and healing session with Don Julio who is a third generation Andean Shaman. Cost $45. Cha Cha Gifts and Wellness Center, 1300 Livingston Av, North Brunswick. 732-249-1821.

children ages 3-5. Stony Brook-Millstone Watershed Association, 31 Titus Mill Rd, Pennington. 609-737-7592.

WEDNESDAY, FEBRUARY 5 Stalking Shadows Preschool Class – 1-2:30pm. Learn what it takes to make a shadow, play some shadowy games, and even try to step on your own shadows. Dress for outdoor exploration. Registration required. Cost $10/$15 member/non-member children ages 3-5. Stony Brook-Millstone Watershed Association, 31 Titus Mill Rd, Pennington. 609-737-7592.

Vienna Concert-Verein Orchestra – 2pm. The Vienna Concert-Verein Orchestra tours the finest works of Viennese classical composers, as well as select contemporary Austrian numbers. Listen to the Orchestra, accompanied by solo pianist Sebastian Knauer, conducted by Philipe Entremont. Cost $35-$70. State Theater, 15 Livingston Av, New Brunswick. 732-246-7469.

MONDAY, FEBRUARY 3 Pre-Natal Yoga 4-Week Class – 7:15-8:15pm. Exercise with a certified prenatal yoga instructor in a class that encourages flexibility, endurance and strength through physical poses. This specialized class for expectant mothers can help you meet and bond with other pregnant women and prepare for the journey of being a new parent. No prior yoga experience needed. Please bring a yoga mat. Cost $40. RWJ Fitness & Wellness Center, 3100 Quakerbridge Rd, Hamilton. 609-584-5900.

TUESDAY, FEBRUARY 4 Read & Explore Program, Animal Tracks – 10am. Read books about animals in winter and talk about wintertime in nature. After story time, make bird feeders with wild bird seed to take home and help the birds through winter. Weather permitting visit farm animals and match tracks to each. Registration required. Cost $7/child age preschool to 8. Terhune Orchards, 330 Cold Soil Rd, Princeton. 609-924-2310. Stalking Shadows Preschool Class – 10-11:30am. Learn what it takes to make a shadow, play some shadowy games, and even try to step on your own shadows. Dress for outdoor exploration. Registration required. Cost $10/$15 member/non-member

Pre-Natal Yoga 4-Week Class – 11:45am-12:45pm. Exercise with a certified prenatal yoga instructor in a class that encourages flexibility, endurance and strength through physical poses. This specialized class for expectant mothers can help you meet and bond with other pregnant women and prepare for the journey of being a new parent. No prior yoga experience needed. Please bring a yoga mat. Cost $40. RWJ Fitness & Wellness Center, 3100 Quakerbridge Rd, Hamilton. 609-584-5900. Angel Card Readings with Gina Fernandes – 1-4pm. Certified by Tina Marie Daly and Charles Virtue. Experience the guidance found in a special reading with Gina. Cost $42/half hour. Cha Cha Gifts and Wellness Center, 1300 Livingston Av, North Brunswick. 732-249-1821.

In Search of Owls – Presentation & Night Hike – 7-8:30pm. Begin the evening indoors with a presentation to introduce you to owls, their calls and adaptations. Afterwards take a night hike in search of the nocturnal raptors and then warm up indoors with a hot beverage. Registration required. Cost $10/$15 member/non member children aged 6 and up. Stony Brook-Millstone Watershed Association, 31 Titus Mill Rd, Pennington. 609-737-7592.


a central theme in artwork over the ages. Susan Hoenig, instructor at the Arts Council of Princeton, will lead an all-day mixed media workshop. Participants will be instructed on how to create 2D and 3D depictions of trees, as well as guided on a short hike of the Watershed Reserve trails with a Naturalist and introduced to the maple syrup production process Registration required. Cost $45/$60 member/non-member. Stony Brook-Millstone Watershed Association, 31 Titus Mill Rd, Pennington. 609-924-8777.

Basics of Successful Lawn Care 4-Week Class – 7-8:30pm. Barbara J. Bromley, Mercer County Horticulturist, will teach four lawn care classes. Topics include management and selection of grasses, basic maintenance strategies, trouble shooting; weeds, pests, and insects and lawn renovation/ establishment. Recommend to participate in all four sessions. Registration required. Cost $12/class, $40 all 4-class advance purchase recommended. Master Gardeners of Mercer County, Rutgers Cooperative Extension, 930 Spruce St, Lawrence. 609-989-6830.

THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 6 Guided Aromatic Meditation – 7-8pm. Develop relaxed awareness and clarity with meditative aromatic essences. Focus will be guided using breath, aroma, and intention attuning to the deepest level of being. Gemma Bianchi aromatherapist. Cost $10. RWJ Fitness & Wellness Center, 3100 Quakerbridge Rd, Hamilton. 609-584-5900. Carpal Tunnel Screening – Low cost screening for Carpal Tunnel ailments. Call for appointment time. Cost $5. Comprehensive Pain & Regenerative Center, 181 N Harrison St, Princeton. 609-588-0540.

FRIDAY, FEBRUARY 7 Memphis – 8pm. Straight from Broadway, comes the four Tony® Award winning musical Memphis. Cost $35-$70. State Theater, 15 Livingston Av, New Brunswick. 732-246-7469.

SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 8 Read & Explore Program, Animal Tracks – 10am. See February 4 listing. Princeton. The Life of Trees: Painting & Sculpting Workshop – 10am-3:30pm. Explore how trees have been

The Oneness Blessing with Aswini Rao – 2-3pm. Free. The Oneness or Deeksha Blessing is a direct transfer of intelligent sacred energy which causes the heart to open, heals relationships, quiets the chatter of the mind, opens the doors to higher states of awareness and initiates a process of Awakening into Oneness. Cha Cha Gifts and Wellness Center, 1300 Livingston Av, North Brunswick. 732-249-1821.

MONDAY, FEBRUARY 10 Pre-Natal Yoga 4-Week Class – 7:15-8:15pm. See February 3 listing. Hamilton.

TUESDAY, FEBRUARY 11 Gift from a Tree Preschool Class – 10-11:30am. Learn about the importance of trees and what ‘gifts’ they give us. Learn where maple syrup comes from, as we tap maple trees, gather sap, and make syrup from maple trees on the Watershed Reserve. Everyone gets to sample the finished product. Dress for outdoor exploration. Registration required. Cost $10/$15 member/non-member children ages 3-5. Stony Brook-Millstone Watershed Association, 31 Titus Mill Rd, Pennington. 609-737-7592. Grand parenting 101 – 7pm. Free. Carolyn Schindewolf, Health Educator leads interactive session that includes latest in baby and child care, transitioning from parent to grandparent and family dynamics when grandparents retire. Princeton Public Library, 65 Witherspoon St, Princeton. 609-924-7108.

WEDNESDAY, FEBRUARY 12 Gift from a Tree Preschool Class – 1-2:30pm. Learn about the importance of trees and what ‘gifts’ they give us. Learn where maple syrup comes from, as we tap maple trees, gather sap, and make syrup from maple trees on the Watershed Reserve. Everyone gets to sample the finished product. Dress for outdoor exploration. Registration required. Cost $10/$15 member/non-member children ages 3-5. Stony Brook-Millstone Watershed Association, 31 Titus Mill Rd, Pennington. 609-737-7592.

natural awakenings

February 2014


Basics of Successful Lawn Care 4-Week Class – 7-8:30pm. See February 5 listing. Lawrence. Archangel Meditation Circle with Judy Toma – 7-8:30pm. Judy will give a brief Angel reading for each participant and give you insight into a special Archangel or guide. Join this monthly circle of like minded souls and be guided on a journey to meet this Angel that will bring understanding and healing. Cost $28. Cha Cha Gifts and Wellness Center, 1300 Livingston Av, North Brunswick. 732-249-1821. Carpal Tunnel Screening – Low cost screening for Carpal Tunnel ailments. Call for appointment time. Cost $5. Comprehensive Pain & Regenerative Center, 2333 Whitehorse-Mercerville Rd, Mercerville. 609-588-0540.

THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 13 Living With Purpose – 6:30pm. Free. Led by Debra Lambo, MA, LCSW, a small learning community will use poetry, song and personal reflection to better understand what living with purpose means for each of us. Suzanne Patterson Bldg, 45 Stockton St, Princeton. 609-924-7108.

FRIDAY, FEBRUARY 14 Happy Valentine’s Day

SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 15 Animal Tracks, Trails and Tales – 10am-12pm. Explore the fields and forests of the Watershed Reserve with Teacher-Naturalist Tammy Love, in search of animal tracks and trails. Learn about tracks and track patterns and read the stories they tell. Discover animal homes and hideaways and make your own plaster cast to take home. Dress for wintery walking conditions – boots are recommended. Registration required. Cost $7/$10 member/non-member. Stony Brook-Millstone Watershed Association, 31 Titus Mill Rd, Pennington. 609-737-7592. Pre-Natal Yoga 4-Week Class – 11:45am-12:45pm. See February 8 listing. Hamilton. Tarot Card Readings with Jessica Gabrielle – 1-5pm. Gain some insight into your life with a personal reading. Cost $45/half hour, $85/hour. Cha Cha Gifts and Wellness Center, 1300 Livingston Av, North Brunswick. 732-249-1821.



Read & Explore Program, Getting Ready for Spring – 10am. Wake up from winter and prepare to start gardening. Reading is a selection from Frog and Toad are Friends. Each child plants seeds to take home. Registration required. Cost $5/child age preschool to 8. Terhune Orchards, 330 Cold Soil Rd, Princeton. 609-924-2310.

Read & Explore Program, Fur, Feather, Fluff: Keeping Warm in Winter – 10am. See February 18 listing. Princeton.


markyourcalendar UMCPP Blood Drive Ensure to eat substantial meal and drink plenty of fluids if you are planning to donate.

February 17 • 12-3pm Princeton Fitness & Wellness Center, 1225 State Rd, Princeton

609-683-7888 Pre-Natal Yoga 4-Week Class – 7:15-8:15pm. See February 3 listing. Hamilton.

TUESDAY, FEBRUARY 18 Read & Explore Program, Fur, Feather, Fluff: Keeping Warm in Winter – 10am. Learn about how animals keep themselves warm in winter. Read two stories about animals and explore the sense of touch with wool, feathers, etc. Each child will make a paper bag animal to take home with lots of “fluff”. Registration required. Cost $7/child age preschool to 8. Terhune Orchards, 330 Cold Soil Rd, Princeton. 609-924-2310. Turtle Time Preschool Class – 10-11:30am. What animal carries their home on their back, likes to stay in the mud during winter, and is considered a slowpoke in most stories? A turtle. Learn about turtles, and meet the resident turtles of the Watershed Reserve. Dress for outdoor exploration. Registration required. Cost $10/$15 member/non member children ages 3-5. Stony Brook-Millstone Watershed Association, 31 Titus Mill Rd, Pennington. 609-737-7592. Health Rhythm Drumming – 7-8pm. Group drumming is good fun and good for you. HealthRythms, an evidence-based program, strengthens the immune system and reduces stress. Drums provided or bring your own. Mauri Tyler, CTRS, CMP. Cost $15. RWJ Fitness & Wellness Center, 3100 Quakerbridge Rd, Hamilton. 609-584-5900.

WEDNESDAY, FEBRUARY 19 Turtle Time Preschool Class – 1-2:30pm. What animal carries their home on their back, likes to stay in the mud during winter, and is considered a slowpoke in most stories? A turtle. Learn about turtles, and meet the resident turtles of the Watershed Reserve. Dress for outdoor exploration. Registration required. Cost $10/$15 member/non member children ages 3-5. Stony Brook-Millstone Watershed Association, 31 Titus Mill Rd, Pennington. 609-737-7592. Basics of Successful Lawn Care 4-Week Class – 7-8:30pm. See February 5 listing. Lawrence.


Mercer County, NJ

Pre-Natal Yoga 4-Week Class – 11:45am-12:45pm. See February 8 listing. Hamilton. Learn How to Make Cheese – 12pm. Double-header cheese making class. Ricotta and mozzarella. Cost $65, payment made at reservation. Cherry Grove Farm, 3200 Lawrenceville Rd, Lawrenceville. To register or for information call 609-219-0053. Crystals for Grounding with Larry Schiller – 1-2:30pm. During this workshop you will learn: How to make a crystal grounding cap, visualization for grounding, where to place crystals for grounding and receive an individual mini clearing. Cost $20. Cha Cha Gifts and Wellness Center, 1300 Livingston Av, North Brunswick. 732-249-1821.

markyourcalendar Yoga for Pain Relief Workshop will review common physical pain patterns (low back, shoulder, and knee pain) and ways to find relief through yoga. For each common ailment a series of poses will be offered that when done regularly can reduce bouts with chronic pain. No yoga experience necessary. Attendees who pre-register have the opportunity to suggest a specific muscle or joint they would like to work on during this session.

February 22 • 2:30-4:30pm Cost $25 OM Massage & Yoga LLC, 666 Plainsboro Rd, Ste 635, Plainsboro

609-306-2618 MONDAY, FEBRUARY 24 Introduction to Your Lifestyle in Retirement – 7pm. Free. Presenter John George offers an introduction to planning for retirement or a major lifestyle change. Help to explore options for dealing with change, managing time, identifying passions and volunteering. Princeton Public Library, 65 Witherspoon St, Princeton. 609-924-7108. Pre-Natal Yoga 4-Week Class – 7:15-8:15pm. See February 3 listing. Hamilton.

TUESDAY, FEBRUARY 25 Insects in Winter Preschool Class – 10-11:30am. Deep in winter, we know that some animals hibernate, some animals migrate and some animals remain active all winter long. What do insects do when winter arrives? Discover what insects do to survive the cold winter months. Dress for outdoor exploration. Registration required. Cost $10/$15 member/non member children ages 3-5. Stony Brook-Millstone Watershed Association, 31 Titus Mill Rd, Pennington. 609-737-7592.



Insects in Winter Preschool Class – 1-2:30pm. Deep in winter, we know that some animals hibernate, some animals migrate and some animals remain active all winter long. What do insects do when winter arrives? Discover what insects do to survive the cold winter months. Dress for outdoor exploration. Registration required. Cost $10/$15 member/non member children ages 3-5. Stony Brook-Millstone Watershed Association, 31 Titus Mill Rd, Pennington. 609-737-7592.

Baby Basics – 6:30-8:30pm. Learn about newborn care and adaptive behaviors. This class provides hand-on practice with infant bathing, diapering, swaddling, crib safety and SIDS. Cost $30/couple. RWJ Fitness & Wellness Center, 3100 Quakerbridge Rd, Hamilton. 609-584-5900.

Basics of Successful Lawn Care 4-Week Class – 7-8:30pm. See February 5 listing. Lawrence. Reiki Sharing Evening – 7-9pm. Trained practitioners are invited to share Reiki with each other. Bring a pillow and a small sheet and blanket. Cost $5. RWJ Fitness & Wellness Center, 3100 Quakerbridge Rd, Hamilton. 609-584-5900.

THURSDAY, FEBRUARY 27 UMCPP Blood Drive – 11am-2pm. Ensure to eat substantial meal and drink plenty of fluids if you are planning to donate. YMCA John K. Rafferty Branch, 1315 Whitehorse Mercerville Rd, Hamilton. 609-581-9622.

plan ahead SATURDAY, MARCH 1 Pre-Natal Yoga 4-Week Class – 11:45am-12:45pm. See February 8 listing. Hamilton.


markyourcalendar Healing Arts Open House Free Massage and Yoga throughout day. Meet staff massage therapist and yoga teachers; learn about full-service healing arts center. Offerings include Gentle/Restorative Yoga, Hatha Yoga, beginner Yoga, free chair massage/ first come, first serve. Discounted introductory massage and yoga session puchase available.

March 2 • 10am-4pm Cost $50/5-class yoga card or 60-minute massage OM Massage & Yoga LLC, 666 Plainsboro Rd, Ste 635, Plainsboro

609-306-2618 TUESDAY, MARCH 4 Read and Explore Program, Composting – 10am. Learn about turning “garbage” back into soil. Read stories about worms and compost. Each child makes a compost container to take home. Registration required. Cost $7/child age preschool to 8. Terhune Orchards, 330 Cold Soil Rd, Princeton. 609-924-2310.

markyourcalendar Advertise Your Event with a Mark Your Calendar listing in our Calendar of Events. Thousands of our readers are looking for healthy options.

THURSDAY, MARCH 6 Guided Aromatic Meditation – 7-8pm. Develop relaxed awareness and clarity with meditative aromatic essences. Focus will be guided using breath, aroma, and intention attuning to the deepest level of being. Gemma Bianchi aromatherapist. Cost $10. RWJ Fitness & Wellness Center, 3100 Quakerbridge Rd, Hamilton. 609-584-5900.

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natural awakenings

February 2014


ongoingevents NOTE: All calendar events must be received via email by the 10th of the month and adhere to our guidelines. Email for guidelines and to submit entries. CPAP education, adjust CPAP pressures, refit masks and discuss the importance of CPAP/BiPAP usage. RWJ Hamilton Center for Health & Wellness, 1 Hamilton Health Place, Hamilton. 609-584-6681.

monday Discover the Serenity of T’ai Chih – 11am. Discover the Serenity of T’ai Chi Chih (Joy thru Movement Class). Need better balance, concerned about high blood pressure, quality sleep a challenge? Join class at Monroe Township Senior Center, Monroe. For more information, additional locations, & to learn how to save on class fee, contact Siobhan at 609-752-1048.

friday Breastfeeding Support Group – 11am-12pm. Expectant parents will learn about the benefits of breastfeeding, getting started, positioning, nutrition, pumping and avoiding common problems. Facilitated by Lactation Consultant. Free. PHC Community Education & Outreach Program, 731 Alexander Rd, Ste 3, Princeton. 888-897-8979.

Rise to the Task Free Dinner – 4-5:30pm. Free community dinner. First Presbyterian Church of Hightstown, 320 N Main St, Hightstown. For more info contact Rise office at 609-443-4464. Breast Cancer Support Group – 6-7:30pm. 3rd Tues. No registration required walk-ins welcome. UMCP Breast Health Center, 300B PrincetonHightstown Rd, East Windsor Medical Commons 2, East Windsor. Discover the Serenity of T’ai Chih – 6:30pm. Discover the Serenity of T’ai Chi Chih (Joy thru Movement Class). Need better balance, concerned about high blood pressure, quality sleep a challenge? Join class at VFW, 77 Christine Ave, Hamilton. For more information, additional locations, & to learn how to save on class fee, contact Siobhan at 609-752-1048.

tuesday Discover the Serenity of T’ai Chih – 6:30pm. Discover the Serenity of T’ai Chi Chih (Joy thru Movement Class). Need better balance, concerned about high blood pressure, quality sleep a challenge? Join class at American Legion, 2 Meadowbrook Ln, New Egypt. For more information, additional locations, & to learn how to save on class fee, contact Siobhan at 609-752-1048.

wednesday Discover the Serenity of T’ai Chih – 8:45am. Discover the Serenity of T’ai Chi Chih (Joy thru Movement Class). Need better balance, concerned about high blood pressure, quality sleep a challenge? Join class at Energy for Healing, 4446 Main St, Kingston. For more information, additional locations, & to learn how to save on class fee, contact Siobhan at 609-752-1048. Bright Beginnings – 10:30-11:30am. This informative, relaxed group is for parents and caregivers of infants. Each week focuses on a different topic of interest to new parents, and guest speakers are occasionally featured. Infants and children under 4 years of age are welcome to attend with the parent or caregiver. $5 payable at door. Princeton Fitness &


Mercer County, NJ

Men in Retirement – 2pm. 1st Friday. This social group for men meets and have regularly scheduled small group activities. Come and meet other men who are making or have made the transition into retirement. Suzanne Patterson Bldg, Princeton Senior Resource Center, 45 Stockton St, Princeton. 609-924-7108. Wellness Center, Princeton North Shopping Center, 1225 State Rd, Princeton. 609-683-7888. Zumba Fitness – 6-7pm. Join the fitness party and burn calories while enjoying dance steps and fitness moves. Cost $8/7 Drop-in/Punch Card. Bring-a-Friend $6/each. Lawrence Community Center, 295 Eggerts Crossing Rd. Contact Stephanie. 609-954-9067. Archangel Meditation with Judy Toma – 7-8pm. 2nd Wed. During this monthly Meditation Circle, Judy will give a brief Angel reading for each participant and will give you insight into each Archangel. You will be guided on a journey to meet this Angel that will bring understanding and healing. Make a commitment to yourself and your healing. Take this time to meet with like minded people, discover peace and your own inner guidance. Cost $28. Cha Cha Gifts & Wellness Center, 1300 Livingstone Av, North Brunswick. 732-249-1821. Multi-Level-Yoga – 7-8pm. Starting Inspired by Iyengar, Anusara, and Kundalini traditions. Cost $15/drop-in. Cash/check only. Meadow Creek Clubhouse, Manalapan. Call Brian to register/confirm attendance at 609-306-2618.

thursday 4 Mom’s Networking Hour – 1-2pm. Weekly parenting topics with RWJ Hamilton experts and sharing with other moms. RWJ Hamilton Center for Health & Wellness, 1 Hamilton Health Place, Hamilton. 609-584-5900. CPAP Workshop – 6pm. 3rd Thurs. Free workshop provided by the Sleep Care Center for patients with sleep disorders. A respiratory therapist will provide

Discover the Serenity of T’ai Chih – 6:30pm. Discover the Serenity of T’ai Chi Chih (Joy thru Movement Class) in Bordentown. Need better balance, concerned about high blood pressure, quality sleep a challenge? Join us. To register call Siobhan at 609-752-1048.

saturday Multi-Level Yoga – 8-8:55am. Inspired by Iyengar, Anusara, and Kundalini traditions. Cost $15/drop-in. Cash/check only. Center for Relaxation & Healing, Plainsboro. Call Brian to register/confirm attendance at 609-306-2618. Showcase Saturdays – 8:30am. 2nd Sat. Free. Guests can try two complimentary 25-minute featured workout sessions. Donations to the Robbinsville Food Pantry are kindly requested in return for the free sessions. Body Project Studio, Foxmoor Center, 1007 Washington Blvd, Robbinsville. 609336-0108. Soup Kitchen – 4:30-6pm. 3rd Sat. Volunteers arrive at 3pm. Free hot meal served. VFW Post 5700, 140 Dutch Neck Rd, Hightstown. Information: Adrenne 609-336-7260. SPOT (Safe Place for our Tweens) – 7-10pm. 1st Sat. Allows 9-12-year-old youngsters to “hang out” at the YMCA under the supervision of trained YMCA staff. Basketball, indoor soccer, music, karaoke, swimming, access to the wellness center, video games in our Youth Interactive Center and the snack stand are offered. A Hamilton Area YMCA Membership is not required for participation. Dress comfortably for the activities you wish to participate in. 1315 Whitehorse Mercerville Rd, Hamilton. 609-581-9622 x 21103.

communityresourceguide Connecting you to the leaders in natural healthcare and green living in our community. To be included, email or call 609249-9044 to request our media kit.


405 Rte 130 N, East Windsor 609-616-2281 Schedule a complimentary consultation and learn how Traditional Chinese Medicine can safely and effectively relieve chronic pain and stress, restore sleep, boost energy, promote healthy digestion, and support OBGYN issues. Experienced Practitioner since 2004. See ad, page 15.


181 N Harrison St, Princeton 2333 Whitehorse-Mercerville Rd, Mercerville 609-588-0540 Get the most out of you years naturally and without surgery. Specializing on natural pain relief and body regeneration, with exceptional patient care. See ad, page 43.


Holistic Health Practitioner 609-752-1048 Enhance balance of Body/Mind/ Spirit through T’ai Chi Chih, Seijaku, Qigong, Reiki and Donna Eden Energy. Clients can choose classes or personalized one-onone sessions for deep relaxation and reducing the effects of stress. See ad, page 29.


Center for Grief Services specializes in grief treatment. Workshops and individual therapy options available. See ad, page 17.


Sheena Potts 24 South Main St, Allentown 609-286-8502 Achieve the results you never thought possible. Specializing in Kettlebell, TRX and bodyweight combo classes, mobility and balance classes, Functional Movement Screen, individual personal training, semi-private personal training and small group training. See ad, page 13.



Trudy Ringwald Country Herbalist & Certified Reboundologist 553 Rte 130 N, East Windsor 1100 Rte 33, Hamilton 609-448-4885/609-586-6187 BlackForestAcres.Net Two locations for the natural connection to live well and eat right. Natural and organic foods, vitamins, supplements, groceries and most important, free consultation.

NUTRITION NUTRITIONAL CONSULTANT Claire Gutierrez 194 N Harrison St, Princeton 609-799-3089

Let me help analyze your current diet thru nutritional assessment and assist you in making necessary adjustments and modifications to eventually achieve optimal health.

Daniel Hicks 609-460-4637 We are more than just a solar installer. We see ourselves as educators and stewards of the environment. We always do our best to educate about the benefits of going solar and being energy efficient. See ad, page 11.


3200 Lawrenceville Rd, Lawrenceville 609-219-0053

HOLISTIC DENTISTS PRINCETON CENTER FOR DENTAL AESTHETICS Dr. Ruxandra Balescu, DMD Dr. Kirk Huckel, DMD, FAGD 11 Chambers St, Princeton 609-924-1414

We offer a unique approach to the health care of the mouth based on a holistic understanding of the whole body. Please contact us to learn how we can serve your needs. See ad, page 23.

HYPNOSIS PRISM HYPNOSIS Dr. Ira Weiner 609-235-9030

Do you smoke, feel stressed or in pain, crack under pressure, or want to break unhealthy habits? Contact us and visit our website for healthful solutions that work. See ad, page 33.

Organic and natural products including farmstead cheeses; Buttercup Brie, seasonal Jacks, Rosedale, Herdsman, Toma, Havilah and Cheddar Curds. Additional products include whey-fed pork, grass-fed lamb and beef, pasture-raised eggs and myriad locally sourced goods.


2186 Rte 27, Ste 2D, North Brunswick 877-817-3273 Dr. Magaziner has dedicated his career to helping people with pain and musculoskeletal injuries using state-of-the-art and innovative pain management treatments including Platelet Rich Plasma, Stem Cell Therapy and Prolotherapy to alleviate these problems. See ad, page 2.

natural awakenings

February 2014


departments healthbriefs consciouseating globalbriefs wisewords ecotips fitbody greenliving inspiration healingways naturalpet healthykids

themes JANUARY health & wellness

plus: health coaches FEBRUARY rethinking heart health plus: stress relief MARCH food & garden plus: gluten-free foods APRIL green living plus: healthy home MAY women’s wellness plus: bodywork JUNE inspired living plus: men’s wellness JULY food watch plus: natural medicine cabinet AUGUST transformative education plus: children’s health SEPTEMBER conscious caretaking plus: yoga OCTOBER sustainable communities plus: chiropractic and acupuncture NOVEMBER personal empowerment plus: beauty DECEMBER awakening humanity plus: holiday themes


Mercer County, NJ



Non-Invasive Pain Treatment: No Surgery, No Cortisone by Dorota M. Gribbin, MD


ain is a symptom,” says Dorota M. Gribbin, M.D., Assistant Clinical Professor at Columbia University – College of Physicians and Surgeons, Chairman of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation section at Robert Wood Johnson University Hospital at Hamilton and Medical Director of Comprehensive Pain and Regenerative Center. “In order to manage pain effectively, it is essential to pinpoint its cause.” She is named one of the best doctors in the New York Metro Area by Castle Connolly Medical Ltd. for 14 consecutive years between 1999 and 2013.

REGENERATE rather than Replace Regenerate rather than replace your joints, tendons, muscles, skin, and wounds with Regenerative Injection Therapy with Growth Factors in Platelets Rich Plasma (PRP) and Kinines in Platelets Poor Plasma (PPP). PRP therapy strengthens and heals arthritic and strained joints, tendons, ligaments, muscles, and skin — including non healing wounds and aging skin of your face. PRP injections can be performed all over the body. It is a natural regenerative method of treatment of sports injuries, arthritic joints, lower back pain, disc disease, tennis elbow, carpal tunnel syndrome, ACL and meniscal tears, shin splints, rotator cuff tears, plantar fasciitis, iliotibial band syndrome, piriformis syndrome, tennis/golfer’s elbow, sprained/torn muscles, and aging skin. To prepare PRP, a small amount of blood is taken from the patient. The blood is then placed in a centrifuge. The centrifuge spins and automatically produces the PRP. The entire process takes less than 15 minutes and increases the concentration of platelets and growth factors up to 500 percent. When PRP is injected into the damaged area it stimulates the tendon or ligament, causing mild inflammation that

triggers the healing cascade. As a result new collagen begins to develop. As this collagen matures it begins to shrink causing the tightening and strengthening of the tendons or ligaments of the damaged area.

How does PRP Therapy work? To prepare PRP, a small amount of blood is taken from the patient. The blood is then placed in a centrifuge. The centrifuge spins and automatically produces the PRP. The entire process takes less than 15 minutes and increases the concentration of platelets and growth factors up to 500 percent. When PRP is injected into the damaged area it stimulates the tendon or ligament, causing mild inflammation that triggers the healing cascade. As a result new collagen begins to develop. As this collagen matures it begins to shrink causing the tightening and strengthening of the tendons or ligaments of the damaged area. The initial consultation with the doctor will determine if PRP/PPP therapy is right for you.

RADIOFREQUENCY: A Revolutionary Modality in the Treatment of Painful Conditions and in Body Regeneration & Rejuvenation Surgery should be the last resort. Most painful conditions are treated conservatively with a nonsurgical approach. In addition to medications, physical modalities (ultrasound, TENS, massage, exercise) and injection techniques RADIOFREQUENCY is a revolutionary technology which incapacitates the conduction of pain and also treats cellulite, tightens the subcutaneous tissue and erases scars and wrinkles. Traditionally, therapeutic injections have involved injecting an anti-inflammatory agent, usually corticosteroids. Good news: not necessarily anymore! Radiofrequency ablation of the median branch sensory nerve “turns off” a small nerve which conducts pain. It is used for effective treatment of pain with long lasting results. The outcomes are amazing: years of pain relief, lowering or

eliminating the need for pain medications.

Aesthetic Medicine If you have complaints about thin, wrinkled skin, hyper pigmentation (skin discoloration or blotchy patches), circles under the eyes, hanging skin, lax skin, grooves or deep nasolabial folds, crow feet around eyes and lips, thinning hair, cellulite, fatty issue accumulation around the chin, buttocks, waist, thighs and body and face asymmetry, face and body, acne scars, keloidal scars, we can help. Her aesthetic medicine treatment options include treatment for the reduction of cellulite, fatty tissue, and skin tightening of the face, neck, abdomen, buttocks, hips and thighs. This treatment is achieved through a non-surgical liposuction and body sculpting procedure using the same radio frequency energy, but different instruments as mentioned previously. If you have been suffering from pain and want to improve your quality of life, please consider treatment by Dr. Gribbin who specializes in the comprehensive diagnosis and treatment of painful conditions, regenerative medicine, medical weight loss and the newest aesthetic medicine techniques of rejuvenation and anti-aging medicine, without dangerous medications or surgery.

BLAZE NEW MARKETING TRAILS Consumers are seeking the latest trends in healthy foods.

Cultivate your business by advertising in Natural Awakenings’ Special Food & Garden March Issue Reach health-minded enthusiasts including: • Health-Conscious Eaters • Energy-Saving Technologies • Gardeners & Farmers • Plant-Care Specialists • Chefs & Cooks • Earth-Friendly Landscapers • Dietitians • Organic Consumers • Food Bank Providers • Co-op Marketers • Healthy Dining Spots • Recyclers — and this just scratches the surface

Contact us at: 609-249-9044

Natural Awakenings Mercer, NJ February 2014  

Healthy Living, Healthy Planet