I Am Grateful

I am thinking about gratitude. It’s not hard for me. I was born an optimist; I always see the glass half-full. I always make lemonade from lemons — what else would you do with them? Yes, it is true that I have had my share of bad days, but I’ll be the first to tell you that they have made me a better person, and a better doctor, too. See what I mean? It’s a given. I had a quiet laugh this week when my dear friend send me a “positivity challenge” on Facebook because, as far as I’m concerned, it’s never been positivity that was the challenge! Continue reading

Perfection is the Enemy of Progress

Sometimes I imagine a sign in my office, just above the door, that says “Perfection is the enemy of progress.” I think about this a lot, especially when I see people who are hard on themselves, who discount small efforts as insufficient, or who describe themselves as lazy, or incompetent, or unfocused. They are none of these. If anything they are precisely the opposite — hard-working, goal-directed and applied — but they tend to believe that if they can’t give it their all, there’s no sense trying because there can be no chance of success. Continue reading

The Best New Health App in Town!

This past year, I met Adam Baratz, a twentysomething who was talking about his idea for the new app, Betchyu. And this past week, I am thrilled to report, Betchyu launched! The Betchyu team is everything you’d expect — young, hard-working, creative, smart, entrepreneurial, and ambitious. These guys have cracked the code for motivation. Way to go, Adam and team! Continue reading

Celebrations & Libations

This week has been a celebration, consisting of one wonderful meal after the next at my parents’ small farm in northwest NJ. Lots of people talk about how to add more vegetables to their meals, but here at the farm my folks are walking the walk. Eating vegetables is what they do. Our dear friend and neighbor Grace waxes about where to get the best green beans, broccoli, or early corn. The asparagus and strawberries are gone now, she reminds us wistfully, until next year. Continue reading

Sugar for Breakfast?

Breakfast cereals have a praiseworthy origin.  They were invented by health spa owners offering an alternative to the usual breakfast of the time: eggs, coffee, and meat, usually beef, bacon or sausage. Coincidentally, the invention of breakfast cereal also provided an economical use for the crumbs that fell to the bottom of the bread ovens at the health spas. The word “cereal” simply means grain, and is derived from Ceres, the Roman goddess of agriculture. We’ve gone a long way from that origin, but unfortunately it’s been in the wrong direction. Continue reading

Eggs, Simplicity, and the Ruhlmans

It was quite an amazing week! It started with a visit with Michael & Donna Ruhlman, along with their generous gift of a copy of Egg: A Culinary Exploration of the World’s Most Versatile Ingredient.

The Table of Contents alone scrambled my brain! Wow–check this out!:

Whole/Cooked in the Shell
Whole/Cooked out of the Shell
Whole/Cooked out of Shell/Blended
The Dough-Batter Continuum
Separated/the Yolk
Separated/the White
Separated but Used Together

Michael Ruhlman makes you think about ingredients in a  way you never have before. Continue reading

The Word “Healthy” Has Lost Its Meaning

This week I read the usual assortment of posts, advertisements, articles, op-eds, stories and emails describing various products, recipes and produce as “healthy.” Hundreds of examples flood my world on a weekly basis. How is anyone supposed to know what the word “healthy” means anymore?

What’s the problem? “Healthy” doesn’t mean anything anymore. It’s been co-opted by the food industry, and from there it has become so firmly entrenched in our daily language that it’s more or less lost its value. The media, in particular, uses it extensively. This week alone I saw it used in reference to peas, milk, chocolate, granola, dog food, cookies, gluten-free flour, grocery stores, and that was just the beginning. Not just that, but food is not “healthy.” It is, rather, “nutritious.” Eating nutritious food is an essential part of being healthy. To be specific, it’s not food that’s healthy, it’s us.

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