Organic school lunch program

Local, Organic and Sustainable?    Why an Organic County?

“The Marin Organic School Lunch and Gleaning Program is helping to transform the school lunch choices for our kids by offering a combination of purchased and gleaned foods from Marin Organic farms to participating schools throughout the county. “Gleaned” food is produce which would otherwise be left in the fields because it doesn’t meet the strict aesthetic requirements of restaurants and retail markets. This can account for up to 20% of what is grown, and throughout the year may include potatoes, squashes, spinach, leeks, beets, carrots, arugula, lettuces, meats, eggs, yogurt, ice cream and more!

So far, 90,000 pounds of local, certified organic products have been gleaned and delivered to participating schools, camps, and under served communities throughout Marin, offsetting their costs and therefore allowing them to serve local and organic options while staying within their limited budgets.

Each week the program enables 12,000 children to eat

organic foods grown from Marin soils.

All Marin Organic foods are certified organic, from farms within a 15 mile radius, and delivered from farms to schools often on the same day and always within 24 hours. Now that’s local! Marin Organic acts as the liaison between farmers and schools, as the fiscal sponsor, as well as the distributor. An updated product availability list is sent to participating schools on Thursday mornings, orders are received by Friday afternoons, and all foods are delivered to schools and community centers with our biodiesel-powered truck on Tuesdays.

For a visual on this exciting program, please watch our short video at If you are a school or community center and would like to participate in this exciting program, please contact Program Manager Scott Davidson at 415.663.9667 or”

Primitive cells developed at Harvard

“Jack Szostak, a molecular biologist at Harvard Medical School, is building simple cell models that can almost be called” life”. Szostak’s protocells (primitive cells) are built from fatty molecules that can trap bits of nucleic acids that contain the source code for replication. Combined with a process that harnesses external energy from the sun or chemical reactions, they could form a self-replicating, evolving system that satisfies the conditions of life, but isn’t anything like life on earth now, but might represent life as it began or could exist elsewhere in the universe.”

Click on link to see video of the cells.

Brain Tumors-New Genetic Pathways

Comprehensive Study of Brain Tumors

New Genetic Mutations, Core Pathway

“The Cancer Genome Atlas (TCGA) Research Network, a collaborative effort funded by the National Cancer Institute (NCI) and the National Human Genome Research Institute (NHGRI) of the National Institutes of Health (NIH), reported the first results of its large-scale, comprehensive study of the most common form of brain cancer, glioblastoma (GBM). “Sept. 4, 2008, in the advance online edition of the journal Nature, the TCGA team describes the discovery of new genetic mutations and other types of DNA alterations with potential implications for the diagnosis and treatment of GBM.

Among the TCGA findings are the identification of many gene mutations involved in GBM, including three previously unrecognized mutations that occur with significant frequency; and the delineation of core pathways disrupted in this type of brain cancer. Among the most exciting results is an unexpected observation that points to a potential mechanism of resistance to a common chemotherapy drug used for brain cancer.

“… The more we learn about the molecular basis of glioblastoma, the more swiftly we can develop better ways of helping patients,” said NIH Director Elias A. Zerhouni, M.D.

Like most cancers, GBM arises from changes that accumulate in cells’ DNA over the course of a person’s life – changes that may eventually lead to the cells’ uncontrolled growth. However, until recently, scientists have understood little about the precise nature of these DNA changes and their impact on key biological pathways that are important to the development of new interventions.

TCGA researchers sequenced 601 genes in GBM samples and matched control tissue, uncovering three significant genetic mutations not previously reported to be common in GBM. The affected genes were: NF1, a gene previously identified as the cause of neurofibromatosis 1, a rare, inherited disorder characterized by uncontrolled tissue growth along nerves; ERBB2, a gene that is well-known for its involvement in breast cancer; and PIK3R1, a gene that influences activity of an enzyme called PI3 kinase that is deregulated in many cancers. PI3 kinase already is a major target for therapeutic development. The discovery of frequent mutations in the PIK3R1 gene means that GBM patients’ responses to PI3 kinase inhibitors may be dictated by whether or not their tumors have mutated versions of the gene.

The TCGA team combined sequencing data with other types of genome characterization information… to generate an unprecedented overview that delineated core biological pathways potentially involved in GBM. The three pathways, each of which was found to be disrupted in more than three-quarters of GBM tumors, were: the CDK/cyclin/CDK inhibitor/RB pathway, which is involved in the regulation of cell division; the p53 pathway, which is involved in response to DNA damage and cell death; and the RTK/RAS/PI3K pathway, which is involved in the regulation of growth factor signals.

The three pathways were interconnected and coordinately deregulated in most of the GBM tumors analyzed. Therefore, combination therapies directed against all three pathways may offer an effective strategy, the TCGA researchers state.

As in the Human Genome Project, TCGA data are being made rapidly available to the research community through a database, The database provides access to public datasets, and with required review and approval, allows researchers access to more in-depth data.

Additional information about NHGRI can be found at its Web site,”

Vegetarian Rehab. Centers

Top five most vegetarian-friendly rehab centers with yummy food as rated by PETA.
The Meadows (Arizona): All about fresh, organic root veggies, tofu, veggie burgers, and vegetarian casseroles, this desert oasis has helped the likes of Kate Moss, Eric Benet, Mike Tyson, Elle McPherson, Tara Palmer-Tompkinson, Paul Gascoigne, Ron Wood, Kerry Katona, Michael Barrymore, and Whitney Houston.

Hazelden (Minnesota): Hazelden offers Gardenburgers, veggie chili, veggie riblets, vegetable egg rolls, and sautéed vegetable sandwiches. Calvin Klein and Aaron Sorkin are two of the famous faces who have stayed at this ultra-famous facility.

Passages (California): Daily vegetarian and vegan soups and salads, vegetables, fresh fruit, squeezed juice, hummus, tabouleh, pasta primavera, vegetarian lasagne, wild mushroom pasta, vegetarian tacos and burritos, and veggie burgers are just a few of the menu must-haves at Passages, which has catered to Mel Gibson, among other stars.
Cottonwood de Tucson (Arizona): Baked rigatoni with spinach, wasabi mashed potatoes with snap peas, veggie pizza, veggie fried rice with spring rolls, portobello mushrooms stuffed with polenta, vegetable tostadas, green corn tostadas, and a daily salad bar are just some of the many vegetarian options that this favorite facility for rockers in recovery have offered to residents like Ron Wood, Geri “Ginger Spice” Halliwell, and Robbie Williams.
Caron Foundation (Pennsylvania): Offering five-star eating for stars including Liza Minnelli, Steven Tyler, and Miss USA Tara Conner, the Carol Foundation is a vegan’s paradise. Daily vegetarian options include vegetable pot pies, black-bean patties with pineapple chutney, veggie dogs with vegetarian chili, veggie pita sandwiches, roasted vegetables and tofu bakes, seven-vegetable orzo also a HUGE salad bar, and soy milk, rice milk, and soy cheese are available upon request.
Amy Elizabeth

Hospitals going solar reports on the first solar hospital in Colorado. boulder Community Foothills Hospital teamed up with Namaste Solar Electric to incorporate solar into the facility. the hospital was one of the top green hospitals to being with, and now has a 37 kilowatt solar system on a roof awning in addition to a 28 kilowatt system on the roof of the Tebo Family Medical Pavilion.
To integrate this installation into the architecture of the Foothills hospital, Namaste Solar is utilizing SunPower panels for their aesthetic appeal and high efficiency rating. Combined, the two solar electric systems will provide more than 75,000 kWh of electricity each year and prevent 155,000 pounds of carbon dioxide emissions annually – the equivalent of not driving 168,000 vehicle miles each year or planting 5,900 trees.

In an effort to reduce energy costs and greenhouse gas emissions, The Hospital for Sick Children (SickKids) is installing a new solar panel system on the hospital’s Atrium roof. The solar energy system will supplement SickKids’ hot water system, an environmentally friendly method to reduce energy costs and increase savings for the hospital. The proiject was scheduled for completion by the end of ’07.

Nambour General Hospital in Queensland has installed five rows of solar panels nearly 60 metres long on the roof of the doctors’ parking garage; part of its plan to reduce the hospital’s carbon emissions by an estimated 3,296 tons – the equivalent of output of 810 cars.
The $3.1 million Environmental Protection Agency and Queensland Health initiative aims to reduce energy use at the hospital, including electricity, gas and water.

Beware of Wild Mushrooms

Even the most experienced shrumers can misidentify mushrooms from time to time. Nicholas Evans and family ended up in a London hospital after eating a batch of wild cooked mushrooms on a Scotland holiday.

Evans “The Horse Whisperer” is recovering in a hospital after eating poisonous mushrooms during a holiday in Scotland. Tests confirmed that some of the mushrooms included the highly toxic variety Cortinarius speciosissimus, which attacks the kidneys.

FDA + cloned meat = consumer beware

and their offspring were as safe to eat as products obtained from traditional animals. Before then, farmers and ranchers had followed a voluntary moratorium that prevented the sale of clones and their offspring.

It is theoretically possible” offspring from clones are in the food supply, said Siobhan DeLancey, an FDA spokeswoman.

What kind of a statement is this from a regulatory and safety board!!!-Editor’s note.

FDA and the U.S. Agriculture Department have said it is impossible to differentiate between cloned animals, their offspring and conventionally bred animals, making it difficult to know if offspring are in the food supply.

Then avoid eating all conventional grown and processed meat until the industry stardards for efficacy and safety are rock solid.-Editor’s note.

Although USDA in January “asked” the cloning industry to prolong the ban on selling products from cloned animals during a “transition” period expected to last at least several months. That ban did not extend to meat and milk from the clone’s offspring

(Buyer beware FDA again fails the consumer.-Editor’s note.)

“It worries me that this technology is out of control in so many ways,” said Charles Margulis, a spokesman with the Center for Environmental Health. The possibility of offspring being in the food supply “is just another element of that,” he said.

Despite the backing from FDA, major food companies including Tyson Foods Inc, the largest U.S. meat company, and Smithfield Foods Inc have said they would avoid using cloned animals because of safety concerns.

The Center for Food Safety and Friends of the Earth said 20 food producers and retailers vowed not to use ingredients from cloned animals in their products included Kraft Foods Inc, General Mills Inc, Campbell Soup Co, Nestle SA, California Pizza Kitchen Inc and Supervalu Inc.Susan Davison, director of corporate affairs with Kraft, said product safety was “not the only factor” the company considers. “We must also carefully consider additional factors such as consumer benefits and acceptance … and research in the U.S. indicates that consumers are currently not receptive to ingredients from cloned animals,” she said.

Clones’ offspring may be in food supply: FDA by C. Doering

Coastal evacuations people helping people

People have learned from Katrina and are putting their hard learned lessons to practice with this hurricane season in full force. People are helping everyone that can to get out of New Orleans and other cities along the Gulf today.
Buses collecting would-be evacuees from 17 locations across New Orleans will continue to run Sunday until 3 p.m. and 6 PM the last flight from the airport will leave, city officials said, giving residents further opportunity to get out of town ahead of Hurricane Gustav.

The bus service at those locations was scheduled to end at noon and officials decided to extend it three more hours even though the number of people showing up had slowed to a trickle by mid-day.

Residents also can show up directly at the city’s evacuation center at the Amtrak station on Loyola Ave.

18,000 people have evacuated through buses, trains and airplanes contracted by the government. The number of people passing through the processing center earlier today was a sharp contrast to Saturday, when thousands waited in long lines to board buses that would take them to shelters throughout the state and region. Hopefully most people got out of town on Saturday The last city buses were scheduled to gather people from 17 pick up spots at 3PM and the last flight out is scheduled for 6PM tonight.

Sarah Carr, The Times-Picayune Sunday August 31, 2008

We can continue to help each other by including all people and nature in crisis in our positive thoughts of love and healing and donate to centers in our area that will send help to families and animals in crisis.


When acid comes up from your stomach into your throat it may cause the burning. It often happens in response to an emotional crisis or after eating.

What happens physically?

At the top of your stomach is a muscle called the lower esophageal sphincter (LES), which normally opens and closes properly to allow food to enter the stomach. It also prevents the acid in your stomach from backing up into your esophagus and helps keep food out of the lungs.

If acid leaks (refluxes) into the esophagus, it can cause

1. burning

2. iregurgitation into the lungs, causing a cough or wheezing.

3. a sore throat. If acid reaches the mouth, it can dissolve the enamel of the teeth.

Millions of people have the disease and suffer from the pain of heartburn every day.
How can this be handled?
1 Look for foods or food combinations that may be triggering the digestive upset.
Suggestion: Keep a food diary for two weeks and record all food and drink ingested and the time it was taken.
2. Are you getting too fast or not chewing your food to a pulp?
Suggestion: Time how long or the number of times you need to chew a bit of food to turn it to liquid in your mouth before swallowing it.
3. Eat small, frequent meals.
4. Are you eating to close to bedtime? Eat lightly.

If you are eating meats or complex proteins within 3 hours of retiring, your food will ferment (rot) in your stomach and cause indigestion and poor sleep.
5. Are you getting this burning at certain times of the day or night?
6. Are you staying up too late and not getting enough quality deep sleep to allow your digestive system to completely relax at night? From 11PM to 11 AM all your digestive organs actively try to balance their energy.
7. Have you checked the side effects of your medicines or supplements to see if they are in some way upsetting your system?
Discuss any medications you are taking with your doctor.

To decrease GERD naturally, doing the following may help:

  • Wear loose natural clothing that breathes. Constriction can cause discomfort to an all ready bloated digestive system
  • Maintain a healthy weight through proper food intake, exercise and deep breathing daily.
  • Do not lie down flat on your back after eating simply reclines on an angle.
  • When you go to sleep at night lie on an angle or on your left die if that is comfortable to ease stress on your esophageal tissues
  • Check with your homeopathic practitioner from constitutional remedies to help GERD -Sul., Puls.,Staph,Sil,Ars.,Bry to name a few.
  • The following is a list of other herbs and supplements that have been used for relief of digestive upset.
  • Avoid fried foods, red meat, coffee, hot peppers like cinnamon, chile, red meat, peppers, mustard, alcohol, citrus, plums and tobacco.
  • These foods and supplements and herbs can help heal the inflamed tissues (if the person is not sensitive to them.)

Moist watery foods like watery soups, gruel of oats, barley or rice,

honey, water, banana, avocado, tofu, soy milk, soured milk or yogurt,        goats milk products, spinach, cucumber, cabbage, potato, seaweed, chlorophyll rich foods
Herbs: slippery elm, marshmellow, red raspberry and flax tea,

chamomile tea if the person is not allergic to ragweed,

Aloe vera avoid if pregnant or have a history of kidney problems

Probiotics good digestive enzyme complex,

DGL (deglycyrrhizinated licorice unless you have high blood pressure,
garlic, tumeric,
DiGize from Young Living Essential Oils – Massage a drop or two topically on. stomach to soothe digestive problems
**Always seek medical advice if the burning persists.

Integrative medicine assessment part 1

Integrative Case Taking & Assessment – Step by Step

Your integrative assessment of a new client (or child,
or anyone you wish to understand better).


When should the assessment begin?

It begins at the first energetic interchange as soon as you see them the first time and every time you have any exchange with the person.

What do I look for when I first greet a client?

Look for the HOWS

How the person enters the room.
How they interact with the companion.
How they dress.
How they greet you.
How do they describe their problems?
Quality of patient history.
Ability to describe the presenting problems or symptoms.
Duration of symptoms and description.
Which emotional/pain body are they telling their story from?