L’Etape du Tour Challenge

Conquering new heights for InspireHealth!

Five weeks from now, a team of 10 inspired cyclists will ride the 2012 L’Etape du Tour, an annual event, which is held in conjunction with the world famous Tour de France. This amazing challenge is an actual stage of the Tour!

On July 8th, the team will encounter one of the most challenging L’Etape du Tour stages ever – riding 152 km and climbing over 4,600 metres of elevation over four major mountains from Albertville to La Toussuire ski station in the Alps.

Their goal?

To raise $50,000 in support of InspireHealth. Help them reach this goal by donating to their ride today!

Stepping up to the Challenge

Team Leader, Mitchell Edgar, discovered this unique cycling challenge while visiting France to watch the 2010 Tour de France. The chance to ride an actual stage of one of the world’s most prestigious professional sporting events was too much for this cycling enthusiast to pass up. Mitchell crossed the finish line in just 11 hours following a 181km gruelling ride. This special moment marked the end of one the most challenging, exhilarating and unforgettable rides of his life.

Upon returning to Vancouver, he knew that he wanted to test his endurance and ride this challenge again. Thinking it over, Mitchell realized that L’Etape du Tour would work as a great fundraising event for InspireHealth combining his passion for cycling and integrative cancer care.

Like so many people, Mitchell has been personally affected by cancer. “I lost my mother to cancer in 2002 and I wish we had known about InspireHealth then. My father was diagnosed with prostate cancer a few years ago and fortunately, he was able to take advantage of InspireHealth’s programs to support his standard cancer treatment.”

This Year’s Ride

Last year, five dedicated riders- including two InspireHealth members and Dr Ron Rezick, a medical doctor at InspireHealth Victoria – raised over $30,000 for those with a cancer diagnosis.

This July, ten passionate InspireHealth advocates and members, will travel to France to compete in one of the world’s most famous cycle challenges. These riders have been training for this physical endurance test for months – safe in the knowledge that this hard work will be worth the sense of achievement as they cross the finish line and reach their fundraising goal of $50,000.

100% of the funds raised from this event will be donated to InspireHealth and invested in the programs and services we offer those living with a cancer diagnosis. Help the team reach their$50,000 goal by sponsoring a rider or donating to the overall ride, and by forwarding this email to your friends!

Help this group of passionate, motivated individuals reach their goal as they embark on this life-transforming event to make a difference in the lives of those touched by cancer.

 

             Donate to L’Etape Du Tour  

            Sponsor an InspireHealth Rider 

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Eat like a Yogi

While many people explore yoga for better health, a calmer mind and a fitter body, consider whether your practice extend to your dinner table. Eating like a yogi is not about following a specific diet or fasting; the goal is to tune into your own needs to find a way of eating that nourishes your body, mind and spirit.

In our society, it is not uncommon for people to eat for reasons other than hunger: whether out of boredom, anger or pain, eating can be a way of concealing emotion. For others, it may be simply the habit of eating at a certain time or during a certain activity that lead us to eat the wrong kinds of foods or eat when we aren’t really hungry. One of the core teachings of yoga is being mindful of living in the moment. Many yogis find that their compulsion to overeat subsides over time, simply because they are more in tune with what their body requires. This finding is now more than just anecdotal. Recent research in the Journal of the American Dietetic Association found that people who do yoga regularly tend to eat more mindfully and maintain a healthier body weight over time, independent of the affect of the exercise itself. You can explore this concept even if you aren’t a yogi. Before you rush off to eat, take a moment and ask yourself “Am I really hungry? What does my body need right now?” You may find that this simple question is enough to awaken mindful eating.

Vital Food

In yogic philosophy, Prana is the life force that animates all living beings and we practice yoga to both awaken and harness the Prana within. Not surprisingly, everything we eat has the ability to either energize us or weigh us down. Foods that are unprocessed and close to nature such as whole grains, vegetables, fruits, beans, nuts and seeds are more energizing to the body than processed foods such as frozen pizzas, boxed side dishes and snack bars. Increasing the amount of vitalizing foods in your diet is easy: simply choose one meal or snack to give a ‘vital’ makeover and see how you feel. If you typically eat a granola bar mid morning with your coffee, why not select your favourite dried fruits and raw nuts to make a trail mix? Choose items without added salt, sugar and sulphites to minimize processing. Increasing the amount of raw fruits and vegetables in your diet energizes thanks to the incredible bounty of vitamins, minerals and phytochemicals they contain.

While exploring changes to your diet, avoid rigid dogmas and stay flexible! For some, a vegetarian diet makes sense while for others, choosing organically grown and ethically raised meats may be a better solution. You may find that Ayurvedic nutrition principals inspire your eating or that you prefer a Mediterranean style of dining. Just remember: eating like a yogi means enjoying life, nourishing your body and enjoying food…so dig in!

Desiree Nielsen, RD, Choices Dietitian
For more grocery and cooking tips, I invite you to visit us in store or to come along on an InspireHealth Nutrition Tour. To support the InspireHealth community, we are pleased to offer this new complimentary service every other Friday at 11:30am at our Kitsilano location. Key InspireHealth food and nutrition teachings will be put into practice at the grocery store with Choices’ dietitian. You can learn practical tips and techniques for incorporating more healthful foods into your life and also understand more about foods you should be cautious towards.

Tours are FREE and open to all InspireHealth members, however, registration is required. Please call 604-734-7125 to join the next tour!

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Inspiration for Cancer Prevention

Check out our upcoming events for Cancer Month this April!

April is Cancer Month and we at InspireHealth are once again partnering  with Choices Markets to provide public education highlighting the area of cancer prevention.

Despite major investment in research, better screening and cancer treatment, deaths from cancer have not been significantly reduced in the last 30 years. Cancer has become the leading cause of death in every province in Canada for the first time.

It is time for change – to focus on prevention as opposed to the disease and to embrace a  whole person approach to cancer.

 We have been working hard with the Nutrition Team at Choices  to develop “Inspired Choices” – a selection of natural superfoods and supplements that are simple and effective nutritional choices to prevent cancer and aid in recovery. During the month of April, stop by any Choices Market and pick up some of these items – distinguished by an InspireHealth dangler sign on the grocery shelf.

This weekend, on April 14th, we invite you to come to ‘Inspired Saturday’. Each of the seven Choices Markets in BC will feature an InspireHealth information table. Come along to sampledelicious offerings and pick up the Inspired Shopping list that features recommended foods, supplements, and health tips.This could be the first step in your journey to a healthier and happier lifestyle.

Public Seminars During April 

From Prevention to Care: A Whole Person Approach to Cancer  

Throughout the month we will also be hosting a number of public cancer prevention talks. If you are interested in learning more about the importance of a healthy lifestyle in relation to cancer prevention, we invite you to attend one of our talks.

Join Dr. Teresa Clarke, MD of InspireHealth as she offers practical tips to prevent cancer. Dr. Clarke will also speak about how making changes in your lifestyle can make an incredible difference in your health.Seminars will take place at the following locations

Choices Markets  at the Crest in Burnaby on April 17

Inspire Health Vancouver on April 18

Choices Markets White Rock on April 19.

These seminars are open to everyone, so please pass this information on to your friends and family members who you feel may be interested in attending. Each seminar begins at 7pm.

Pre-registeration is required for the talk in InspireHealth Vancouver on April 18th and there is a cost of $10 at the door as this is a fundraiser for InspireHealth. To register, please call 604-736-0009.

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The Glorious Transition into Spring

Spring is a time of change from the early vibrant colours of primulas and pansies to a hint at the beginnings of edible foods bursting forward from fertile soils.

I love this time of year! I welcome the transformation from darkness to light and from dormancy to growth. The organic systems in our bodies that are most ‘active’ at this time of year are the liver and gallbladder. That is why, traditionally, during this season, it is natural to detoxify from built up residues of wintertime. Foods that are seasonally ripe aid our bodies in detoxifying in this manner. For example, succulent and sour new spring greens have an expansive and stimulating energy that invokes healthy circulation and movement within. They have gentle cleansing properties in the blood that help drive out unwanted impurities while retaining the nutrients. That is the wisdom of fresh, whole food.

I ate a leaf of lemony sorrel from my garden just yesterday (it has survived two winters now) and it exploded in my mouth, waking my taste-buds that have become accustomed to eating a lot of rich winter fare. It immediately reminded me of this magical relationship that we have with our food that goes back to the beginning of time when food became our medicine and medicine became our food.

So I encourage you to visit your local farmer’s market or, even better, plant a few seeds of your own this season and re-awaken your taste-buds and your body to the glory of great food.

Try this tasty recipe to get things flowing!

Watercress & Fish Soup

This recipe is a wonderful transition recipe from winter to spring cooking. It contains substantial protein and nutrients that you would typically crave in wintertime, yet has a lightness and a freshness that symbolizes spring.

Ingredients:

  • 1 tablespoon cold-pressed olive oil
  • 1 tablespoon organic butter
  • 1 medium onion, chopped finely
  • 1 medium potato
  • 1 organic red pepper, julienned
  • 6 ounces watercress (approx. a half a typical bunch from the market), chopped coarsely – keep the stalks separate from the leaves.
  • 1 ¾ cup fish or vegetable stock, preferably homemade (see fish stock recipe below).
  • 1 ½ cups coconut milk (optional – replace with extra stock if you do not use coconut milk).
  • Juice of half a lemon
  • Unrefined salt, pepper and cayenne, to taste.
  • Fresh lemon thyme (optional)

  1. Heat oil and butter in large frying pan and sauté onions until softened, not browned.
  2. Scrub and slice the potato into thin bite-sized pieces. Add the potato slices to the pan and fry gently for 2-3 minutes.
  3. Cover the pan and steam/sauté for approx. 5 minutes, stirring occasionally.
  4. Add the stock (see fish stock recipe below) and coconut milk to the pan.
  5. Then add watercress stalks and red pepper, seasoning with salt and pepper.
  6. Bring this mixture to a boil and gently simmer until the potatoes are tender. This should take just over 10 minutes in a partially uncovered pot.
  7. Add all but a few of the watercress leaves and fresh thyme and simmer for 2 more minutes.
  8. Process the soup in a food processor or blender, then return to the saucepan to heat again before serving, adding the reserved watercress leaves to serve.
  9. Add lemon juice and additional seasoning, as needed.

*Recipe adapted from Virtually Vegetarian.

 

Homemade Fish Stock

Ingredients:

  • 3 whole carcasses with heads of non-oily local fish (for example, snapper).
  • 2 tablespoons organic butter
  • 1 onion, coarsely chopped
  • 1 carrot, coarsely chopped (scrubbed, not peeled)
  • 1 stalk of celery, coarsely chopped
  • 1/4 cup dry white wine (optional)
  • 1/4 cup raw apple cider vinegar
  • 3 quarts of cold filtered water
  • 1 bay leaf
  • 1 tsp dried parsley or a few stems of fresh chopped parsley.
  • 1 tsp dried or fresh thyme
  1. Melt butter in the bottom of a large stockpot.
  2. Add the coarsely chopped vegetables (onion, carrot and celery) and sauté until the vegetables begin to soften.
  3. Add white wine and bring to the mixture to the boil before adding the fish carcasses.
  4. Pour in the cold, filtered water and apple cider vinegar and bring to a boil.
  5. Skim off any foam and brown film that rises to the top.
  6. Add herbs and reduce the heat to a slow, steady simmer for several hours.
  7. When finished simmering, strain the broth into a large bowl. Discard the fish carcasses and vegetables.
  8. Allow broth to cool in the refrigerator.  Once it is cool, remove the fat that has congealed on top and divide between smaller containers to freeze.


Be well and thrive!

Lisa Marie

Contact me for a personal nutrition consultation: 604-714-4065 or email: lbhattacharya@inspirehealth.ca

Drop by Inspire for my free Nutrition Circle (IH members only) every other Thursday at InspireHealth Vancouver from 2:30-3:30pm (Next drop-in: Thursday April 5th at 2:30pm).

You can also check out my nutrition blog at:www.eatingitreal.blogspot.com for previously written healthy recipes and articles on eating healthfully.

 

My upcoming nutritional handbook/cookbook is currently ‘in the works’. If you know anyone who may be interested in helping fund a cookbook with a focus on ‘healing with food as your medicine’, please contact me at the above email or phone number. Thank you!

 

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Cancer in the Bedroom

At InspireHealth, we view sexuality as an important part of health, our relationship with our body and our relationship with others. We are grateful to one of our partners – the Canadian Cancer Society (CCS) – for sharing their thoughts on this topic with you, our InspireHealth community in the article below.

Here at InspireHealth, we believe that there are many ways other than sexual intercourse for us to feel connected with our body, our partner and our pleasure. Developing an intimate and loving relationship with ourselves is fundamental and can open the door to deeper connection and intimacy with others.

Sensuality is an important and meaningful part of our human experience and is available to everyone. We encourage patients to explore the many ways in which sensuality enhances our lives. To become more sensual, be aware of, involved in and appreciative of sensory experiences through our eyes (watching a beautiful sunset), ears (listening to a moving piece of music), touch (petting a dog or cat, giving or receiving a massage), smell (a favourite meal cooking on the stove) and taste (savouring a favourite dish).  Be “sensational”!

Read on to discover ways of dealing with sexual challenges during and after cancer treatment. At the end of this article you will find a list of further CCS resources on this topic. For members of InspireHealth, please talk to your physician about the InspireHealth resources that would be best for you.

Sexual Challenges During and After Cancer Treatment 

 Canadian Cancer Society’s Cancer Information Service 

Cancer and its treatment can affect all aspects of a person’s life, and sexuality is no exception.  Sexuality – including sex drive, sexual function, and sexual feelings – is closely linked to how well you feel overall.  It’s hard to feel sexy if you’re overwhelmed, tired, nauseous, worried, or generally coming to terms with having cancer.  Since sexuality can satisfy many important needs for closeness and pleasure, it may be worthwhile to equip yourself with information and resources to help get your sexual drive back! Read on to find out how the Canadian Cancer Society’s Cancer Information Service can help.

Research has shown that many cancer patients experience challenges related to sex.  For instance, women treated for breast cancer have reported discomfort with their bodies after surgery and decreased interest in sex while taking hormonal treatments. And for men treated for prostate cancer, erectile dysfunction (ED) can be a frustrating reality.  Both men and women can be impacted by fear and anxiety associated with some of the physical, emotional and hormonal changes to their body and can feel uncertain about how to communicate their concerns and/or their desires to their partner. A number of other feelings may arise such as sadness and a natural sense of grief and loss.

Let’s take a moment to consider the big picture. People with cancer aren’t the only ones facing sexual challenges – many perfectly healthy men and women experience difficulties in the bedroom.  In a study of young breast cancer patients, 50% of women reported problems with body image; 48% had difficulty becoming sexually aroused; and 40% felt unable to relax and enjoy sex [1]. However, the authors pointed out that rates of these same problems among healthy women were 47%, 31%, and 28% – still pretty high! The same goes for erectile dysfunction, which impacts nearly 50% of Canadian men between 40- and 88-years-old [2]. So if you’re feeling alone with sexual problems, rest assured – you’re not the only one.

When you call the Canadian Cancer Society’s Cancer Information Service with concerns about sexuality, we draw from a wide range of trustworthy resources to answer your questions.  First, we turn to our Canadian Cancer Encyclopedia, a comprehensive source of knowledge on all things cancer-related. Cancer can affect one or more phases of the sexual response (desire, excitement, orgasm, and resolution).  We can discuss some of the most commonly reported sexual concerns for people with cancer – such as feeling anxious about having sex for the first time after cancer treatment, or experiencing pain during sex because of dryness, nerve damage, or scar tissue. We may also debunk some myths about sex and cancer – like the fear that having sex can cause cancer to grow or spread (not true) or that your partner could “catch” cancer from you (also not true – although HPV, a virus that can be transmitted during sex, increases the risk of certain types of cancer).

Another helpful resource is the CCS booklet “Sexuality and Cancer,” which includes tips for managing different sexual problems and changes.  It also answers some common questions, such as “How soon can I have sex after treatment?,” “Are there times when intercourse should be avoided?,” and “How long after chemotherapy can we stop using a condom?”  You can find these answers and more in the online version of this booklet at or we can mail you a copy free-of-charge.

We can also tell you about different services available in your community. For example, you may wish to access:.

  • CancerConnection, a free and confidential service that connects you over the phone with a volunteer who has experienced a similar diagnosis in the past (you can request to speak to a volunteer who is open to talking about the sexual challenges of cancer treatment);
  • CancerConnection.ca, an online community where you can share experiences and develop supportive relationships with others who have been there;
  • The BC Cancer Agency Library, which can recommend books and DVDs about intimacy and sexuality (if you can’t stop by to pick them up, the Library has a mail-out service);
  • In-person support groups, specific to different types of cancer or groups of people (e.g. young adults, lesbian and bisexual women, or people who identify with different cultural groups); and,
  • CoupleLinks, a professionally facilitated online workshop for couples affected by breast cancer.

Cancer doesn’t have to mean the end of your sexual life. However there may be new challenges for you including feeling uncomfortable asking for resources or information about sexuality.  If so, please call us. The Cancer Information Service is confidential, non-judgemental, and free-of-charge, and we have plenty of time for your questions.  We look forward to hearing from you at 1-888-939-3333.

‘Facing cancer: The Canadian Cancer Society can help you get informed, feel supported and be empowered’.

[1] Fobair P, Stewart SL, Chang S, D’Onofrio C, Banks PJ, Bloom JR. Body image and sexual problems in young women with breast cancer. Psychooncology. 2006;15(7):579-94.

[2] Grover SA, Lowensteyn I, Kaouache M, Marchand S, Coupal L, DeCarolis E, Zoccoli J, Defoy I. The prevalence of erectile dysfunction in the primary care setting: importance of risk factors for diabetes and vascular disease. Arch Intern Med. 2006;166(2):213-9. 
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Stress Reduction

We bring you the 7th installment of ‘The 16 Foundations of Health and Healing’. Over the following months, we will be exploring each of these 16 components in more detail, one at a time. These are the foundations of InspireHealth and they will provide you with valuable information and tools that you can start applying immediately in your day-to-day life. Whether you have had cancer or not, this information provides essential ingredients to living healthy, joyous, and passionate lives.

The Stresses of Modern Life

There are many sources of personal stress in modern life. Working at a job you don’t like, having unresolved issues in a relationship, being under financial pressure, or feeling ‘trapped’ in a situation you think you can’t control are just some of the common major sources of stress. Most of us can be unaware of the degree to which we are affected by stress, or even unaware of some of the major stressors in our life. Numerous studies have clearly shown that stress decreases immune function 1.

Forgiveness Liberates Us

In order to optimally support our immune system and healing journey, it is important to honestly explore and acknowledge sources of stress in our lives and begin to deal effectively with them. Unresolved issues, often dating back many years, are a major source of internal stress for many people. These issues are generally unconscious and may be painful to examine. Dealing with them can, in some circumstances, require a substantial shift in perspective, beliefs, lifestyle, relationships, values and goals. Once we begin to release issues from the past, we can live in the moment and see the world, ourselves, and others more clearly and openly.

Forgiveness is a greater gift to ourselves than to those we forgive. It does not mean condoning the past behavior of others – it is about forgiving – accepting the past as the past. Forgiveness liberates us from the heavy burden of holding onto the past so that we can be more fully in the present and live with more compassion and joy.

Be True to Yourself

Another source of stress in our lives is the stress created when we think that we ‘should’ do or say something when our inner wisdom is telling us to do or say something different. For example, we may think that we ‘should’ do an errand for someone else when what we really want to do is take care of ourselves. In this way, we take care of another person’s needs instead of our own. For many, this can be a significant source of tension and inner conflict. We can end up feeling resentment towards another when, in reality, it is our responsibility to say ‘yes’ when we mean ‘yes’ and ‘no’ when we mean ‘no’.

We may be concerned that, by being true to ourselves, we risk that others may not like our choices or may feel abandoned. Our inner critic may tell us that we are being selfish. In reality, learning to take care of ourselves is the best way that we can help those that we love. Being true to ourselves takes courage and strength and the willingness to allow ourselves and others to know us and our wants and needs more fully. When we model this for others, we help them reconnect with their own health and healing.

Letting Go

Sometimes in the midst of what feels like overwhelming stress, it can be helpful to ‘let go’ of having all the answers and being in control of everything. We may feel fear and anxiety about being so vulnerable yet sometimes ‘letting go’ helps open the door to new possibilities. One potentially liberating and helpful way to deal with stress is to talk with others. Such conversations often enable a shift in perspective, leaving us feeling more empowered and hopeful. Friends, support groups, or professional counseling can all help to provide this support. Research has shown that psychological support and counseling can significantly improve survival 2,3.

InspireHealth physicians and many of its practitioners are also available to support you on your journey. In addition, the B.C. Cancer Agency and other community groups and individual practitioners provide counseling. Meditation, yoga, exercise and other forms of relaxation can all reduce the physical toll that stress has on the body and all these methods can contribute to healing. Sleep, rest, journaling and laughter are also good antidotes to stress. Cultivate an attitude of gratitude by noticing and appreciating all that you have and all that you are.

Discover Ways to Relax

Being diagnosed with cancer is itself a stressful life event. Recent research has shown that the stress of a cancer diagnosis can suppress immune system function. In order to optimize the healing/recovery process, it can be very helpful to incorporate a program of stress reduction and relaxation into your recovery process. By reducing anxiety and stress and facilitating relaxation, we optimize our immune system’s healing abilities. In a study of patients with recurrent prostate cancer who participated in a stress reduction program, researchers found a reduction in their rates of rise of their prostate specific antigen tumour market (PSA), indicating that stress reduction may diminish disease progression 4.

Watch For and Minimize External Stressors

There are many sources of ‘externally created’ stress in our culture. For example, the mass media, which often uses shock and sensationalism to hold our attention, presents a very distorted image of human nature and society. The news is filled with stories of robberies, murders, corruption and war. If we were to base our conception of humankind on this information, we would conclude that humans are selfish, uncaring and destructive. These constant distorted negative images assault our true values and aspirations and can unconsciously sap our energy, optimism and will to live.

Fortunately, there is a simple solution to this problem: Be discerning about the programs you watch and the articles and books you read. Watch programs that inspire you. Read books that celebrate human nature. Removing yourself from negative TV images could be one of the most healthy things that you can do for yourself. Spend more time with friends and family who you feel good around. Celebrate their caring, giving and sharing nature and the wonders of the human spirit.

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Organically Raised

For those of us looking to lighten our environmental footprint, reduce exposure to potentially harmful chemicals and enjoy better quality food, organics seem a natural choice. However, there is still a great deal of confusion about what organic standards are and what the true benefits of organic foods might be. Recent headlines have dismissed some of the health claims on organic produce questioning whether they really are better for you? As multi-national corporations enter the organics game, does it dilute the integrity of the movement? Should you buy organic tomatoes shipped from Mexico or non-organic tomatoes grown close to home? In a complex food system, questions and choices will always exist. However, a picture of how organics fit into a conscious lifestyle is beginning to emerge.

At its heart, the organic movement began as a step away from intensive, industrialized agriculture and a movement towards a method of growing food that was more in harmony with the natural environment. While organic production methods prohibit the use of caustic fertilizers and pesticides derived from fossil fuels, it is not accurate to say that no pesticides or fertilizers are used. For example, certain micronutrients may be added to soils, however, it must be documented that the soil has been tested and proven to be deficient in a nutrient before use. Organic regulations also instruct manufacturers on how food is processed and which inputs can be used in manufacturing. While organic foods may contain fewer synthetics, an organic label is not a green light to eat with abandon. Organic snack foods and treats such as granola bars, cookies or ice creams are still to be enjoyed only as an occasional treat in a healthy diet. Organic candy is still candy!

When it comes to the health benefits of organic produce, the waters are murkier. Previous research has found no increased nutrient levels in organic food. As research methodology grows more sophisticated, however, this is starting to change. One emerging research area is detection of phyto-chemicals. It is thought that phyto-chemicals are a plant’s self-defense system, so by applying herbicides, fungicides and pesticides, we potentially reduce phyto-chemical levels. In 2011, a team of Spanish researchers published evidence in the Journal of Food Chemistry that found organic tomato juice to have higher levels of phenolic compounds than conventional juice. This is research that will need to be confirmed but it is a promising avenue, especially given the unique role that phyto-chemicals play in our health.

Research has suggested connections between synthetic pesticide exposure and cancer, but a definitive link remains to be seen. Speaking in their 2010 Report, however, the President’s Cancer Panel in the US said “All American’s should eat organic” due to these risks. So, when faced with balancing our food budget, do we really need to eat organic? In a healing diet, reducing any potential strains on our bodies makes good sense and many options exist for prioritizing your food dollar. First, because many hormones and environmental toxins accumulate in animal fat, it is wise to purchase organic animal foods if you eat them. With respect to produce, some fruits and vegetables come with a heftier exposure to pesticide residues. Consult the“Dirty Dozen”, a list updated yearly by the Environmental Working Group that lists the most contaminated crops. Purchase the Dirty Dozen as organic produce when you can afford it and select alternatives when organic isn’t possible.

However, no matter what you do – don’t stop eating your produce! The beneficial compounds in fruits and veggies are some of the most critical components of a healing diet, organic or not.

Desiree Nielsen, RD, Choices Dietitian

For more grocery and cooking tips, I invite you to visit us in store or to come along on an InspireHealth Nutrition Tour. To support the InspireHealth community, we are pleased to offer this new, exciting, complimentary service every other Friday at 11:30am at our Kitsilano location. The key InspireHealth food and nutrition teachings will be put into practice at the grocery store with Choices’ dietitian. You can learn practical tips and techniques for incorporating more healthful foods into your life and also understand more about foods you should be cautious towards.

Tours are FREE and open to all InspireHealth members, however, registration is required. Please call 604-734-7125 to join the next tour!

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