February 12, 2020
South Huntington Library
Chef Kathryn Bari-Petritis, The Conscious Chef
Heart Health-and the beat goes on………..
Our hearts beat more than 30 million times a year. Every second of your life the heart muscle
is squeezing away, pumping blood around your body in a continuous stream, about 2,000
gallons daily. What an “exquisite organ”, we house in our bodies!
We have all heard that cardiovascular disease (CVD) is still the number one killer in this
country. Nearly 65 million Americans have at least one type of cardiovascular disease,
including high blood pressure, coronary heart disease, angina pectoris (chest pain due to
insufficient blood flow through the heart) and stroke. Every forty seconds, an American has
what doctors call “a coronary event”, such as a heart attack. A death occurs from these events
about once every minute. Every fifty-three seconds, someone in the US has a stroke. A death
from a stroke takes place every three minutes. More people visit their doctor’s office for
hypertension, or high blood pressure, than for any other reason.
Heart disease is a serious problem for both sexes and needs to be addressed by everyone.
Statistics complied by the World Health Organization (WHO) from 21 countries suggests of
the 18.5 million who die each year form CVD, more than half are women. Postmenopausal
women are especially at risk because of declining estrogen levels, which increase the risk of
heart disease. Vastly under-represented in the scientific research, many physicians may still
not recognize the unique symptoms that heart problems display in the female body.
I feel that many women today have so much on their plates. They are multi-tasking, some of
them working full time jobs, child-rearing, homemaking, taking care of elderly parents and
still available for their partners emotionally and physically. If you ask busy Mom’s what they
ate for breakfast, they can not even respond. In my opinion, they are not paying attention to
their nutritional needs throughout the day, because they are so busy caretaking. Meanwhile,
we all need to be conscious of our nutritional levels, being elevated throughout the day. It
may be as simple as making a protein smoothie in the morning and putting in a thermos and
carrying in a small thermal bag, along with organic nuts, seeds, apple, and some yogurt.
This is all manageable and at your fingertips. It means being, very pro-active about the day.
The Leaders in Alternative and Complimentary Medicine &Theory
Cleveland Clinic’s general Surgeon and Researcher Caldwell B. Esselstyn, M.D., has shown that
a low-fat diet, coupled with cholesterol-lowering medication, is the single most effective way to
stop progression of coronary artery disease. As a Preventive Cardiology Consultant and
President of Endocrine Surgeons, his 12 year reversal study (the longest of its type) of patients
with severe coronary disease, proved that heart disease can be arrested by a plant-based diet.
I would like to share with you some of his findings:
* To treat coronary heart disease, a century of scientific investigation has produced a device-
driven, risk-factor oriented strategy. Nevertheless, many patients treated with this approach
experience progressive disability and death. This strategy is a rear-guard defense. In contrast,
compelling data from nutritional studies, population surveys and interventional studies
supports the effectiveness of a plant- based diet and aggressive lipid-lowering to arrest,
prevent, and selectively reverse heart disease. In essence, this is an offensive strategy. The
single biggest step toward adopting this strategy would be to have the United States dietary
guidelines support a plant-based diet. An expert committee purged of industrial and political
influence is required to assure that science is the basis for dietary recommendations.
* We have a crisis of leadership in our public and private institutions with an emphasis on pre-
vention. Their advice to the public of 30% fat in the diet guarantees disease development and
progression. The level advocated by the National Research Council the American heart
Association, The National Cholesterol, Education Program, and the National Institutes of
health has been shown scientifically to worsen the disease. For them to sanctify this diet as
healthy for the American public is inaccurate. Like trying to fit Cinderella’s slipper on one of
her sister’s- it simply doesn’t work. By way of contrast, the American Cancer Society prefers
20% dietary fat, while the World Health Organization advocates 15%
*Over the pass ten years, the Physicians Committee for responsible medicine successfully
litigated the USDA to ascertain the compensation sources of the US Dietary Guidelines
Committee. Six of the eleven committee members, including the chairman, had relationships to
the meat, dairy, or egg industry. Such conflict insures a perception that the American public
and school children will not receive an unbiased recommendation of what constitutes the
healthiest food choices. The USDA, by definition, a protector of the agriculture industry should
disqualify itself from this responsibility, which more correctly may belong in the Centers for
* The present device-driven, risk-factor identification, diagnoses disease after the fact and
offers no promise of preventing disease or controlling its progression. We are fortunate to
possess the knowledge of how to prevent arrest and selectively reverse this disease. However
we are not fortunate in the capacity of our institutions to share this information with the
public. Ties to industry and politics result in conflict within our private and governmental
health institutions, compromising the accuracy of their public message. As leaders, we must
have the courage to provide the public with accurate information to abolish and prevent
atherosclerosis. We must seek leaders and institutions that are not frayed or compromised by
these ties to industry or politics.
I have had the experience of working indirectly with Dr. Esselstyn , with a patient of his,
designing his weekly menu and preparing his weekly, healthy foods. It has been a rewarding
experience. You can learn more about his enlightening work at: www.heartattackproof.com
Dr. Campbell, a Cornell University Professor who directed “The China Study”, observes that
there are “Two Worlds” of medicine- two radically different visions of how to approach health.
One consensus favors drugs as a cure, the other favors food.
“Let your food be your medicine, and your medicine be your food”, Hippocrates
Other great Pioneers, such as Dr. Esselstyn, are: Dr. Nathan Pritikin, Dr. John McDougal, Dr.
Dean Ornish, Dr. Roger Williams, and Dr. Louis Ignarro, to just name a few.
The following two Doctors have greatly influenced my Culinary Medicinal knowledge and
application in my field.
A Nobel Prize went to Dr. Louis J. Ignarro, for his discovery of Nitric Oxide.
* Nitric Oxide called “The Miracle Molecule”, is the work of 30 years of research by Dr.
Ignarro. Nitric Oxide (NO) is made by the cells that line blood vessels. NO performs its role as
as a VASODILATOR , meaning that it controls blood flow to every part of the body.
Its effect is to relax the muscles in the vessel wall, dilating arteries and increasing blood flow.
NO has been found in the brain, where it serves as a neutransmitter and appears to be
important in the storage of memory. In the stomach NO protects the lining from the effects of
acid, in the pancreas it stimulates the release of insulin. White Blood cells synthesize NO and
use it to kill microbes and tumor cells. NO is multifunctional. Its baseline activity is
modulated by DIET.
NO is directly synthesized from a dietary amino acid called Arginine. This amino acid is
found in; Nuts, Beans, and numerous vegetables. Sardines are abundant with
NO. Other good sources in seafood are: Salmon, Cod, Halibut, and Tuna occasionally
Vegetarian diets may be beneficial in part because they stimulate the production of NO.
Low levels of NO are associated with many of the most common diseases of mankind.
Nitric Oxide influences the functioning and well being of the entire body
Read about his amazing work in his book: “ NO more Heart Disease”, a proven program for
boosting production of the body’s own wonder drug.
Dr. Roger J. Williams is perhaps responsible for more original work in the field of vitamin
research than any other living scientist. He was the first man to identify, isolate and synthesize
pantothenic acid, one of the important B-vitamins. He also did pioneer work on folic acid, and
gave it its name. I have studied his work for the past 17 years and I find it to be a very clear and
simple prevention plan. Its fundamental premise, Pay Attention to Cellular health, is
based on Cellular Nutrition. He teaches that the micro-environment of our bodies cells is
crucially important to our health.
These are some of the important highlights from his book; Nutrition Against Disease.
Cells are dependent on the individual nutrients that come their way
The circulating blood continuously carriers to the cells and tissues about forty or more of
the essential nutrients, each of which fits into our metabolic machinery.
Of the millions of people who die in this country yearly from heart and circulatory diseases,
many succumb prematurely and needlessly simply because they have not provided a
suitable environment for the tissues which provide VITAL work.
The key to prevention is a most thrilling and important one. All hearts (300 million of them
in this country) require vastly better protection and maintenance than they are getting. The
expedient is simple in principle and somewhat more complicated in execution. Since we
cannot alter the heredity of cells and tissues already formed, our only recourse is to improve
the environment in which these cells live.
Dr. Williams felt that, the most basic weapons in the fight against disease are the most ignored
by modern medicine. The medical education has developed a strong Orthodox view-point that
excludes cellular nutrition; the research necessary for developing this expertness has never
been undertaken. Thus the Food and Drug Administration Officials have consistently tended to
leave out of their thinking both the human element in disease and the idea that Cellular
Malnutrition is a prominent cause of the disease.
Protecting hearts should begin prenatally and should be continued throughout
our entire life.
Thank you Dr. Williams!
Holistic Health in Prevention of Heart Disease
A holistic viewpoint is not a new one. It has been around since the dawn of history.
We are coming to realize that the technical and chemical medicine developed to treat our
health problems is not only ineffective, but has many shortcomings as well. As a result a
countermovement has arisen out of our discontent, a healing movement termed, “Wholism”
which in turn has given us “Holistic Medicine” and “Holistic Health”.
A holistic view of the human body recognizes that its function is affected by a variety of factors,
both internal and external, such as food, drink, exercise, emotions, stress and so on. In terms of
illness, a weakness in the heart, express a weakness in other organs. An infection in the finger
means a polluted condition throughout; and improved nutrition and a tonifying of the whole
body will lead automatically to the healing of different symptoms.
This informative information is from the book ,“Food and Healing”, Annemarie Colbin, Ph.D.
In Oriental Medicine/ Far Eastern Traditions
Philosophies of “The Chinese Theory of Five Elements “or “The Five Phases”, brings one into
enlightening areas of awareness and ancient knowledge that can lead to renewal in all areas of
life. In Oriental medicine, the heart itself is not directly treated for CVD disease. They believe
that the heart relies on other organs for its nourishment and energy, so the great majority of
heart problems are caused by and treated through the imbalances of other organ systems.
Their Heart Knowledge is:
The heart not only regulates blood circulation but also controls consciousness, spirit, sleep,
memory and houses the mind. In this way the heart, together with the liver is related to the
nervous system and the brain.
The heart acupuncture meridian affects both the physical heart and the mind. It is well
known that emotions affect the actual functioning of the heart, seen in the speed and
strength of the pulses. When you are filled with anxiety or stress, your Heart owns it.
Numerous studies indicate the heart and nervous systems problems are related to Calcium
metabolism. Coffee, alcohol, tobacco, refined salt, sugar, refined flour, aluminum,
pesticides and all other toxicants interfere with Calcium absorption.
Equally as damaging is excess protein in the blood. Cultures with high protein diets have
elevated levels of heart disease and osteoporosis
Kidney problems and liver stagnation can lead to dis-harmony in the heart center
Stagnant heart blood (sticky blood) or sludge blood- this condition arises when too little chi
energy is available to move the blood. Mucus may also be a cause of obstructed blood,
which can come from improperly digested food and or an excess of mucus forming foods.
Also be aware of habits that contribute to excessive mucus, such as eating complicated
meals, failing to chew thoroughly and drinking cold liquids with meals.
Magnesium in foods is healing to the heart, but the nutrient is lost in the milling process of
grains and the refining of most other foods. Magnesium allows calcium to function properly
in the tissues of the heart and nerves. Green foods are rich in magnesium because the
mineral is positioned at the center of every chlorophyll molecule.
Enlightened Practices for Healthy Heart in the Far Eastern Tradition:
* All types of Yoga, especially deep belly breathing called “Yoga for The Heart”
* Manual Acupuncture called Amma Massage
* All forms of Acupuncture
* Tai-Chi and Gi Gung
* All forms of meditation and spiritual practices
Heart Health Continued-
Now you should have an understanding on how interrelated the body’s systems are, and how
malfunction in one system can have an impact on the other.
We have learned from the previous pages now that the symptoms of CVD can be reversed by a
“Nutrient-Rich” diet and other modalities as exercise.
Since we our create blood from excellent cellular food, in our daily diet, let’s continue our
lecture on; collecting all the information we need to understand good and bad fats that
directly come from food ( and some from genes).
Dr. Deepah Chopra, says in a recent article on feature in Energy Times magazine called, Soul
Healing; a new approach to health that drills down to our very essence,
“Understanding that our body’s are energy , you can tap into the universal energy to reenergize
your body. You can change your genes. There is now scientific research showing that 300 genes
that control heart disease and diabetes and obesity and inflammation can be changed through
lifestyle, through stress management, diet and exercise”.
And I love this part of the article: “So, too, can you change your brain because your brain is not
hardwired. Every thought,, every emotion, every impulse in the brain actually causes the
physical structure to change. If you’re fearful and feeling separate, then your brain will cause
the genes to down regulate, which means that your body will biologically display all the effects
of that state of consciousness. On the other hand, the more you move from personal to
transpersonal to universal domains of consciousness-which of course also means kindness and
love and compassion and generosity and caring for the other- the more your genes will regulate
themselves, which means the BAD genes will turn off and the good genes will turn on. So
that’s a major breakthrough, you’re going to hear a lot about. The next breakthrough is that
every moment of your life you can change your relationship with time. Time is also an
experience in consciousness. Where do you experience time? You don’t see it, there’s not a
perceptual experience. It’s a cognitive experience in consciousness, (depending on how you
measure your experience) so you say,”I had a great time, time flew, or I was bored, time
dragged”. The way you experience time influences your biological clock. If you’re always
running out of time; your blood pressure will be higher, your platelets will be stickier, your
heart rate will be fast and irregular, and if you suddenly drop dead of a heart attack, then
you’ve run out of time.
Dr. Chopra’s release of his new book, Reinventing the Body, Resurrecting the Soul,
comes on the heels of a Nobel winning discovery in cell biology.
Our Love Affair With Fat
I have included in your paperwork, my class lesson on “The Whole Story on Fats”, from my
teaching at Stony Brook College, 3/24/2004.
I believe this will give you a new perspective on approaching fat in your diet.
I am now including some recent good fats that have gotten some great attention:
Raw Organic Coconut Oil or also called Coconut Butter (with raw coconut flesh)
*It is easily digested and used by the body
*The body can use it immediately to make energy rather than store as fat
*Has quick and easy absorption, which puts less strain on the liver & pancreas
*Heats up the “metabolic system”
*Rich in lauric acid, a proven anti-viral, anti-bacterial and anti-fungal agent that is very
beneficial in attacking viruses, bacteria and other pathogens and builds the body’s
*Great tasting can be used in dressings, sautés, soups, desserts; I love it in Brown rice,
one teaspoon in the pot’s water before cooking.
Can be found in Health Stores, and Markets as Whole Foods, and Fairway Markets.
Cholesterol Crazy- a few words
A mis-understood subject in nutrition among the public, dietary cholesterol has
gotten a bad rap for too long time >it’s know to have less of an impact on total health
as previously thought
Is essential for your body, found within the blood scream in every cell, it is used to
form cell membranes
It is needed to form adrenals and sex hormones, Vitamin D, and BILE which is needed
for digestion of fats
Cholesterol in blood is produced by the liver and transported in various protein
components known as Lipoproteins
LDL- low density (bad cholesterol), if too much circulates in the blood, it will build up
plague called Atherosclerosis
HDL-High density (good cholesterol), carries cholesterol away from the arteries and
back to the liver for disposal. HDL is an important risk factor in women & the elderly
Included Charts in your paperwork, are:
Saturated Fat & Cholesterol in Common Animal Products
Summary of Dietary options for Heart and Artery Renewal
Summary of Fatty- Acid Uses
Foods Rich in Antioxidants and Targeted Nutrients for Healthy Levels
Foods Rich in Proteins and Omega-3 Fatty Acids
Put your Diet Into Action with These Healthy Eating Principles
*Emphasize fresh organic vegetables, both raw and cooked; legumes/beans
Nuts; seeds; and Whole Grains, quality herbs and spices
*Choose foods that are real, fresh, local, organic, seasonal and unprocessed
*Eliminate the consumption or refined, high processed foods and foods void
of nutrients, such as artificial flavors (hidden word for MSG), colors, preservatives,
sweeteners and hydrogenated fats.
Keep alert for Genetically Engineered Foods that are poison.
*get your healthy fats from plant sources, such as nuts, avocados, coconut oils
*Minimize extracted oils and professed fats (margarine)
*Reduce or eliminate consumption of Animal foods; choose leaner meats and seafood
*A 3-gram daily salt reduction per person would lower annual causes of heart disease
and strokes by about one-third
*Choose foods that are rich in nutrients when compared to their total caloric content;
also know as functional foods with high nutrient density (Kale, Sardines
*Build your menus around plant-based foods to ensure highly nutrient-dense meals
*Choose foods with a wide spectrum of vitamins, minerals, phytonutrients and
antioxidants, raw juices, green foods
*Learn diet from other nations, as Indian, Chinese, Thai & the Mediterranean diet
* Learn the foods rich in Resveratrol (pomegranate), red grapes, which ward off
Finally, I hope I have enlightened and inspired you today and a stress-free
heart healthy plan.
Take your time to absorb this information. Be pro-active, carve out a space of
time to cook weekly for yourself and family. Cultivate a happy kitchen to cook in.
Sift your consciousness about the benefits of Real food,(Life-changing food)
and get out of your Pleasure-Trap of eating comforts food that have no value and
are laden with sugar and fat.
To all, God Bless, stay healthy and happy
www.thehealthchef.com , Author of “Health Transforming Foods, Their Stories
and Recipes”. Amazon.
Contact: Kathryn@thehealthchef.com , Instagram: Kathryn51, follow me!