Cognitive Dissonance and Health

Cognitive Dissonance may appear to be an odd health & vitality building topic. Humor me, I believe it is very relevant and appropriate.

Let’s first make sure we’re both on the same page by defining Cognitive Dissonance. Psychologist Leon Festinger (1919-89), introduced the concept in the late 1950’s.

When confronted with challenging new information, most people seek to preserve their current understanding of the world by rejecting, explaining away, avoiding the new information or by convincing themselves that no conflict really exists.

This is why people get upset and defensive when you challenge what they hold close. It won’t matter how you say it or what resources you include, the response just happens.

What I offer in the Awaken Your Health programs includes a few notions that some have found difficult to accept:

  • Health challenges and/or signs and symptoms of dis-ease are not due to pharmaceutical drug deficiencies.
  • There are definable reasons why your body is behaving in a manner in direct opposition to how you wish and it’s rarely, if ever, genetically pre-determined.
  • The primary causal factors for dis-ease and the primary healing opportunities for building health & vitality are, relatively speaking the same, environment and lifestyle or how you interact with people, places and things including yourself.
  • Food matters. Appropriate real whole foods, consumed in appropriate amounts and ratios (macronutrients), are foundational to building health and vitality.
  • Self-care, such as FDN® Functional Health Coaching, when appropriate for your unique biochemical individuality and applied, works.

These matters often fly in direct opposition to what you have learned and were told over the course of your life from a plethora of sources including, family, schooling, government and corporate interests.

What I suggest and encourage is that you don’t take anything at face value, regardless of who or what is saying it. Do your own research, ask questions, try it and allow your innate inner wisdom direct you.

Without going into much detail, let’s prove the truth that Health Complaints don’t equal Drug Deficiencies. Taking prescription drugs is so common, people tend to believe it is normal. They don’t appear to associate compromised health with pharmaceuticals. I have had conversations with individuals actively dealing with cancer or CVD and they believe they are healthy.

  • Constipation is not a Metamucil or Ex-Lax deficiency
  • Indigestion is not a Nexium or Prilosec deficiency
  • Aches and Pains are not an Advil or Tylenol deficiency
  • Headaches are not an Aspirin or Ibuprofen deficiency
  • Allergies and Hay Fever are not an anti-histamine deficiency
  • Low libido is not a Viagra deficiency
  • Mental Fragility (anxiety / depression) is not a Valium, Atavan, Zanax or alcohol deficiency
  • Low Energy / Lethargy is not a caffeine, sugar or chocolate deficiency (stimulants)

In 2016 there were approximately 4.45 billion (yes, billion) prescriptions written throughout the United States. We’re talking prescriptions, not individual pills. We’re also not including over-the-counter (OTC) drugs or vaccines. This number is up from 3.95 billion written in 2009.

That’s roughly 14 prescriptions for every man, women and child. Neither my wife or I take one Rx, someone(s) is making up the difference.

Is it so difficult to understand what being healthy is? In spite of all the technical, medical and science advancements, it doesn’t appear to be working. If drugs were so effective in preventing dis-ease or building health should the following be occurring:

  • 65% of American adults are overweight or obese
  • NIH (National Institute of Health) estimates up to 23.5 million Americans suffer from an autoimmune disease. The number is growing rapidly as auto-immune conditions continue to be discovered.
  • Alzheimer’s is the third leading cause of death in the US after heart disease and cancer
  • 26 million Americans have diabetes
  • 7 million Americans have diabetes and don’t realize it
  • 79 million Americans are pre-diabetic and may or may not realize it
  • 1 in 3 children born in 2000 are expected to become diabetic
  • 1 of every 2 black or hispanic children born in 2000 are expected to become diabetic
  • According to the American cancer society the risk of developing cancer for men is 43.31% and 37.81% for women
  • The risk of dying from cancer is 22.83% for men and 19.26% for women

Sure, longevity is at an all-time high, but it’s not a true test of health. More important is quality of life and that is suffering across all age groups.

Rather than aging gracefully, as a culture we are getting old.

Every single one of the above mentioned health problems IS preventable. If you believe that drugs are so good and necessary read the black box of side-effects. Consider that most drugs work by suppressing unwanted function. The suppression of a population is seen as bad, so why is the suppression of an individual at a cellular level, good?

I offer a few follow-up questions. Consider your current health situation.

  • What you are doing to resolve it?
  • Are you manifesting the results you should expect with reasonable expectations?
  • Are you easily able to maintain those results with undo stress?
  • Can you maintain this lifestyle for years if not decades to come?

The fact that you are even reading this says that you are, at the very least, open to possibilities. You have already taken a step or two, outside the proverbial “box”. This says a lot about you and it is good. Don’t stop now, keep moving forward and be willing  recognize and accept when something you believe is true, may in fact be false.

Food Matters – Chinese Barbecued Pork Recipe

I know, another recipe. I can’t help myself. My farmer has an incredible selection of animal products that are raised the way nature intended and I can’t say no to a beautiful cut of meat. In this instance I had 5 lbs of boneless pork butt roast.

I found this slow cooker recipe for Chinese Barbecued Pork and it sounded too intriguing and simple to pass up. It doesn’t get much easier than cooking with a slow cooker.

What really makes the recipe is the Chinese Five Spice Powder. It is an incredible combination and your house will smell delicious. If you can’t find this particular blend, you can make it yourself by combining 1tsp each of ground cinnamon, ground clove, fennel seeds (toasted and ground), star anise, and szechuan peppercorns (toasted and ground). I imagine regular peppercorns will work also. This smells so good I am looking for other ways to use it.

The next time I make this I will play with the ratios of the glaze ingredients to cut back on the sugar. I do have a home-made ketchup recipe I will have to try. I can’t wait to experiment and fine-tune this recipe to make it even better.

Go grab yourself a handful or two of pork butt and invite your family/friends over to enjoy a delicious meal. You can be healthy, happy and enjoy the art of eating!!!

Metabolic Chaos™

Your body consists of cells.

These cells make up tissue, glands, organs and ultimately complex systems or metabolic pathways.

For instance; Hormonal, Immune, Digestive, Detoxification, Nervous, Hypothalmus-Pituitary-Adrenal / Gonadal / Thyroid Axis, etc.

These pathways, along with fluids, gases, chemistry and energy work together interacting with each other, people, places and things…….or life.

Driving this metabolic orchestration is a detailed set of instructions, a program or innate intelligence.

This intelligence resides in each of the 100 trillion + cells of your body.

You were born with this intelligence, it is YOUR birthright!

When this orchestration is functioning optimally the body is in a state of homeostasis, where you experience true health and vitality

Metabolic Chaos™ is the term referred to when there is a disruption to this orchestration.

At its core, at its simplest, you initially lose function at the cellular level.

This cellular dysfunction resides within specific tissue,  it’s not systemic……at least not yet!

If ignored, this dysfunction can rapidly “snowball”, negatively impacting other tissue, glands, organs and ultimately systems.

Early on you may experience mild symptoms.

If ignored, there is a significant decrease to overall health (quality of life), which can force you into the medical model of drugs, surgery, invasive procedures and unintended consequences.

If caught early enough, you can not only slow down, but in many cases reverse this process.

You can create order and function out of chaos!

The art of healing or self-care is more than just discovering the root causal factors through careful histories and well-chosen functional labs.

The art of healing requires personal responsibility to AWAKEN oneself and understand that one’s health is the result of the environment…… and the lifestyle choices made within that environment.

In other words, how you choose to interact with people, places and things including yourselves ultimately determine your state of health and vitality.


FDN® Functional Health Coaching not only uncovers healing opportunities, it also offers proven, time honored health building principles, and the assistance of personalized, customized coaching.

You don’t have to travel this journey alone!

Food Matters – Tomato Jam Recipe

It’s summer so I can’t help myself. I have to offer this easy, tasty and addictive recipe for Tomato Jam!

I don’t recall where I found this recipe but I am glad I saved it and can pass it on.

My plan each summer is to make enough to satisfy my current needs and also enough to get me through the winter. The jam freezes nicely in pint sized canning jars.

I am sure you will love it. If you don’t have enough tomatoes in your garden head out to your local farmer’s market or even roadside produce provider (remember to ask questions about how the tomatoes were grown, use of chemical pesticides, fertilizers, etc) and purchase what you need. Try to bypass the mass produced and relatively flavorless grocery store tomatoes. You deserve better, both taste and nutritionally!


Food Matters – The EGG

The images you are looking at are the difference in lifestyle between a Cage-Free chicken and a Pasture-Raised chicken.

When I look at these images, I see a choice. A choice, not only as to how you spend your money but more importantly the farming practices you support.

I support my Amish farmer by purchasing his pastured chicken eggs versus other less expensive and lower quality product.

According to a 2007 Mother Earth News egg testing project nutritional difference exist

Pastured Chicken Eggs contain on average

  • 2/3 more vitamin A
  • 3 times more vitamin E
  • 2 times more omega-3 fatty acids
  • 7 times more beta carotene
  • 4-6 times more vitamin D

Significantly more nutrition in the same sized package. Is it worth it? Of course! The value of pastured eggs is even higher when you factor in the impact from having poor health & vitality.

With the exception of “Pasture Raised”, most terms used to describe eggs don’t mean what you would think.

CAGE FREE: This only means the chickens are not in cages. They can still be confined in a building, often in large numbers, with little or no outdoor access.

FREE RANGE: According to the USDA, chickens must be allowed outdoor “access”. Key words; “allowed access”. Reality is a “cage free” environment with a small door that opens outside to a few square feet of space.

VEGETARIAN FED: Chickens are NOT vegetarians. Healthy chickens thrive on bugs and insects. If vegetarian fed, the chickens are most likely raised indoors, caged or cage-free, but does it actually matter at that point?

PASTURE RAISED: There are no current guidelines. This term is typically used by sustainable farmers to mean the chickens are raised outdoors, in pasture (on grass) eating bugs, insects and anything else it can find.

PASTURE RAISED is what you should look for as it best allows a chicken to express its “chicken-ness”, at least until agri-business highjacks the term.

Without traveling to your farmer’s farm or coordinating a drop site, your best source is your local farmer’s market where you can buy direct from the farmer. You can not only ask questions about farming techniques practiced, but receive answers.

Empower yourself and make informed, educated choices when it comes to nourishing your body

“You can’t get health from an unhealthy plant or animal.”

The Stress Cascade

  • Are you challenged by health complaints that either won’t go away or are getting worse?
  • Have you recently received a diagnosis and you’re trying to understand why?
  • Have you been told that there is nothing wrong with you, yet you strongly disagree?

Does any of this sounds familiar?

I offer you something to consider……that a stress cascade is in play.

Our modern lifestyle is highly stressful; physically, mentally, emotionally, spiritually.

Existing metabolic/functional imbalances or deficiencies are further compromised in the presence of chronic or acute bouts of stress.

If these imbalances are ignored or masked, by Rx/OTC drugs, stimulants or suppressants, the imbalances spread impacting other functional pathways

Over time, Metabolic Chaos™ ensues.

Metabolic Chaos™ is often HIDDEN within the metabolic systems of the body, including:

  • Hormone Imbalances / Adrenals (HPA Axis)
  • Immune system
  • Digestive system
  • Detoxification pathways
  • Energy production / Cellular function
  • Nervous (Brain) System

This manifests as symptoms or health challenges that if not resolved, leads to illness, disease and a decrease in quality and length of life.

The eight (8) most common health challenges (symptoms of Metabolic Chaos™) are:

  1. Headaches / Migraines
  2. Sleeplessness / Insomnia
  3. Tiredness / Fatigue
  4. Sinus / Allergies
  5. Mental Fragility (Moodiness, Anxiety, Depression, Irritability)
  6. Tension (particularly in the neck/shoulders)
  7. Digestive complaints
  8. Unwanted weight

If you understand how the body functions;

  • what stimulates, assists and supports function
  • what impedes and disrupts function

Then you can create positive change

You can make educated, informed, proven, lifestyle choices…. that build Health & Vitality

It’s time to Awaken Your Health!

It’s time to learn a proven form of self care and avoid being forced into the medical model.

FDN® Functional Health Coaching is designed, with the aid of state of art lab testing and tools, to give your body what it needs so you can experience what you want…..true Health & Vitality.

Make an investment in your health you won’t regret.

Tomato Garden Pie

I love this time of year, to be honest I love just about every time or year. When it comes to food, it is Tomato time. And what better use for a plump, ripe yummy tomato than a Summer Garden Pie!!!

I have had the opportunity to try over a dozen variations on this theme and every one has been a disappointment compared to this one.

I do encourage you to buy, fresh, organic and local when able. If you are not growing tomatoes in your backyard garden, you will easily find them at your local farmer’s markets. The taste explosion in your mouth will make these tomatoes so much better than anything found in your grocery store.

I have included a family recipe for a simple pie crust. It make a huge difference in the final product. Let me know what you think after gobbling up the entire pie!!!!

You Have A Choice

You Have a Choice….

You can learn a holistic form of self-care…..

  • based upon functional lab testing
  • customized around your unique biochemical individuality
  • utilizing proven health & vitality building natural protocols


You can be forced into the medical model where pharmaceutical drugs, surgery and a one-size-fits-all approach is the norm.

You Have a Choice……

Be proactive and discover the root cause of your health challenges and eradicate them.


Be reactive hoping for the best and never sure what will happen next.

It’s time to Awaken Your Health with FDN® Functional Health Coaching.

Make an investment in your health you won’t regret!


Food Sensitivities/Allergies and Vaccines?

I am offering this information and questions to stimulate your thought process, maybe initiate some investigation and your asking of a few questions so than an educated knowledgable choice can be made.

The question is whether there is a connection, a correlation between the food proteins contained in modern vaccines and the epidemic level of food sensitivities / food allergies present in modern America?

Here is a link to a modern study (2015) that brings to light evidence that there does exist a link. This study was published in October ’15 in the Journal of Developing Drugs.

This connection is not new as Nobel Laureate Charles Richet demonstrated over 100 years ago and many studies in the 1940’s demonstrated.

What further complicates or adds to the connection is the commonplace C-section. Bypassing the birth canal removes the exposure of the infant to the healthy, nourishing bacteria the reside within the mother. A child born via C-section has, from birth a compromised micro biome and as a result a less effective immune system.

Intact food proteins should not be found within the bloodstream, amino acids from broken down proteins, sure. Vaccines inject these elements and more directly into the bloodstream bypassing the body’s natural defensive barriers.

On top of this we have the toxic aluminum and mercury present along with other unnatural adjuvants. Heavy metals are not to alter cell function directly by contact and indirectly by displacing nutrients, Heavy metals also are very harmful to the nervous system and brain.

Making matters worse is that there exists a very high correlation between the GI tract’s mucosal barrier and the blood brain barrier. If one is compromised, so is the other. Another protective mechanism is not capable of performing its job and heavy metals are known to find themselves a home in fat tissue, which you brain is primarily composed of.

So I have to ask, is there a connection between the large exposure of heavy metals through vaccines early in life to the increase in neurological disorders we are see in adults and not only the elderly?

I also have to ask this question. If food based proteins in vaccines are contributing to food sensitivities and allergies, would the presence of human tissue cells also found in vaccines be contributing to the significant increase in auto-immune diagnosis?

Is it that hard to consider that the body’s immune system could mistake it’s own tissue for very similar “other” human tissue injected directly into the blood stream. If the immune system finds these “other” human cells in proximity to the thyroid for example, maybe it gets confused and begins attacking the thyroid itself? One this process starts, it may very well continue and then decades later, a doctor decides to take a patients concerns seriously or the patient pays out of pocket and runs a thyroid panel containing thyroid antibody markers and before you know it, Hashimoto’s is diagnosed. While a diagnosis of hypothyroidism is partially a thyroid problem, Hashimoto’s is primarily an auto-immune condition and should be dealt with very differently.

I don’t want to pass judgement on anyone’s choices regarding vaccines. All I ask is that you remain open-minded to the possibilities and do some investigation. It may greatly benefit your health and the health of your children.

Food Matters – Mongolian Beef

I found this recipe and it looked appealing. Unknowingly I have unleashed a monster. This is seriously addictive. I have already reordered a larger amount of Sirloin Tip steak from my farmer.

I will say I did not have, nor could I find easily the Arbor peppers. I ended up using Poblanos fresh from the garden and Shishitos from the farmer’s market. I prefer the taste of peppers over merely the presence of heat. These are a very nice combination.

This dish is easy to make, does not require a lot of time or prep and rewards you with a delicious savory meal to enjoy with loved ones, or just yourself…..doesn’t really matter!