*Articles based on the teachings of Rebbe Nachman of Breslov breslovwoman.org
*Free Video workshops and courses based on the teachings of Rebbe Nachman of Breslov breslovcampus.org
Why is it that so many traditional Jewish foods are loaded with fat, salt, sugar and other ingredients best eaten in small quantities (or not at all)? That is a complicated question and one that I attempt to answer in this blog.
This blog is about my approach to cooking and eating healthy food that is also kosher. So why did I name it healthy Jewish cooking instead of healthy kosher cooking? Well, because someone else owns the domain name healthykoshercooking.com (and healthykosherfood.com, too).
But there is another deeper reason.
Jewish food, by it’s very definition, is kosher. Traditional foods eaten by Jews from around the world have always been kosher. From a historical perspective, until very recently, the vast majority of Jews ate only kosher food and kosher food has always been synonymous with Jewish food.
That’s why hot and sour shrimp and matzoh ball soup sounds “off”. And toxic.
I was raised by a mother who was far ahead of her times when it came to eating with health in mind. As a young adult, I rebelled, but came back around when I developed an ulcer at the age of 24. I had toyed with Macrobiotics, but didn’t really commit. I lived in Manhattan and was familiar with the East West center where Macrobiotics and other alluring, Eastern topics were taught. But I was as likely as not to drink espresso and eat Indian or French food.
The ulcer struck while I was sitting in the theater. All of a sudden, there was a tsunami of pain in my chest. It was so bad I literally slid off my seat. (I don’t remember what the play was in case you’re wondering). I went to a doctor who said I might need surgery but gave me a prescription. I didn’t fill it. The next day I began a brown rice fast. Five days later I begin adding steamed and boiled vegetables to my rice. A few days after that I returned to the doctor who couldn’t believe that my symptoms had completely disappeared.
After that, I did an elaborate apache Tango with eating and cooking healthy. But the back and forth was helpful. It lead to me broadening my concept of eating right. It made me question why the Macro world (filled with plenty of Jews, by the way), was filled with frowning, ultra-serious people, perpetually dissatisfied with anyone who wasn’t toeing the Macro line. I began to rethink the whole trip.
And what a trip it was!
I moved around the world, all the while writing, editing, and making art. I tried more nutritional-based diets (fads and not-so-faddish). My years of Macro studies were the foundation of my work with people who were chronically ill. I began to write articles about health and food in addition to what I was already writing about: spirituality, art, current events, psychology, creativity, marketing, business, and so on. I took a lot of different workshops and classes and began to help others, too. Including some very sick people. I learned a lot along the way.
It became obvious to me that raw and living, macrobiotics, fruitarian, ethical vegetarianism and veganism, caveman (aka paleo), blood-type and so on, each had benefits to offer. But there were also drawbacks. The gung-ho proponents of individual dietary outlooks all swore that you had to commit to their way, or you were a lesser being.
So I packed up my van and headed out to all points away from the East Coast.
Meanwhile, this paralleled, and even intertwined with, my search for the spiritual. Each path I sampled had its allure, but also had drawbacks. Everything seemed less like a complete system than a prescription that left out something vital—either the soul, the body, or the mind.
Finally, I decided to check out my own backyard: Judaism. I started with Judaism-lite of the past 200 years, but I sensed I wasn’t getting the whole picture. So I decided to learn what the previous 2000 (plus) years of Judaism had to say.
I share the fruits of my three decade journey on this blog and include recipes, spiritual insights, and amazing health secrets. And, in case you’re too busy to read this blog and you’re wondering what the number one scientific-Jewish-spiritual health secret is: Eat with joy and thankfulness during the week, eat with an extra measure of joy and thankfulness on Shabbat. The number two scientific-Jewish-spiritual health secret is: Pray. Bless your food. Thank God for your food before and after you eat. The number three scientific-Jewish-spiritual health secret is: Eat less. (Or eat more if your one of those perpetual dieters who’ve been depriving themselves of nutritionally-laden foods.)
I also have been ghostwriting, co-authoring, co-writing, editing and teaching working on articles, books, more articles, op-eds, video and other web content (etc.)—on just about any topic except really technical stuff. I’m also experienced in internet and content marketing for a variety of clients.
Want to reach me?
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I am Noa Berger, VizEat’s Community Manager (http://bit.ly/Wf1vx3). We connect locals and travellers who’d like to discover a new culture with hosts who welcome them at their home around a meal.
Using VizEat is very easy and straightforward: hosts post their meal (this could also be an aperitif, brunch, wine & cheese, etc.) select a date & price, choose their guests and then share an authentic moment around a home cooked meal!
I love your blog and so would be delighted to discuss a potential partnership. There are numerous mutually beneficial opportunities that we can present to you.
Would you be available for a 10 minute chat so that I can give you more details about the partnership and what we are proposing?
We look forward to welcoming you on board!