Mango Relish Salsa

I can hardly stand how excited I am seeing things popping up in my greenhouse and in our garden. The long dreary winter is over (not to say we wont get more snow) and one of the first things outta the ground are radishes.  As a kid we would eat them raw dipped in a bit of sea salt which is delicious but if you wanna doctor them up a bit this salsa will take you by surprise.

Enjoy and happy Thursday!


2 ripe mangos peeled and cut into small chunks

1 red onion finely chopped

6 red radishes chopped

2 scallions chopped

Juice of half a lime

One large handful of fresh chopped cilantro

1 jalapeño pepper chopped (remove seeds if you want less heat)

Sea salt to taste

Put all ingredients in a bowl, toss and serve.

Tanda Cook
Crab Cakes with Aioli Drizzle

Not gonna lie, I’m not a fan of crab meat, but this is one of Justin’s favorites and a stable appetizer when his dad comes into town.

I promise they will quickly disappear.

They also freeze well if you want to make heap of them.

 Try using cooked salmon in place of the crab

 too for a different twist.



1 lb crabmeat (special or jumbo lump)

1/4 cup coconut creamer

1 egg

1/4 cup finely chopped onion

1/4 cup finely chopped red pepper

2 TBS finely chopped carrot

2 cloves garlic finely chopped

1/2 tsp. dry mustard

1/2 tsp salt

Coarsely ground pepper

1/2 tsp Paprika

3 dashes Worcestershire sauce

3/4 cup (more or less) gluten free Panko breadcrumbs

1/4 cup mayonnaise

1 TBS fresh chopped parsley

1 tsp Old Bay Seasoning

Sauté the onion, carrot and pepper until soft, add garlic and sauté for a couple more minutes.

In a bowl, mix egg, cream and other ingredients including the onion, pepper and garlic (except the crab).

Then slowly add about 3/4 of the mixture to the crab, fold in gently, continue adding the mixture until moist consistency, then add bread. If you use jumbo lump you’ll probably not need all of the liquid or you’ll need a little more bread to help hold it together.

Cool in refrigerator for 1 hour, make four or more cakes, fry in butter in pan over medium heat.

The Basic Aioli

Aioli has been a great addition to our kitchen, and it’s a great way to wake up chicken, pork and fish.


2 cups mayonnaise

2 cloves garlic

1 tsp Dijon mustard

lemon juice to taste

sea salt and freshly ground black pepper

Place all the ingredients in a blender or food processor and blend until smooth.

Please Try This: Aioli is a great way to jazz up fish, chicken or pork and a true classic with salmon. Spice it up and get creative with adding more lemon juice or basil, cayenne, roasted tomatoes, roasted peppers, even fennel tops or roasted nuts. You can use any herb really, like parsley, tarragon, dill, basil, even mint. Play with this one!

Ciera Davis
New Class Announcement!

Food That Heals

One-day Intensive Course

Saturday, June 17th or Tuesday, June 27th.

Hey team! Over the past 6 years I have been teaching all around North America, and I have been working over the past 6 months on boiling all of those teachings down to juicy health bits that are digestible and shareable for all of YOU.  Well, the moment has come and I have finally created a ONE DAY INTENSIVE COURSE that is designed to transform the way you think about your HEALTH, how you are with your BODY, your MIND, and with FOOD.

This ONE-DAY intensive online course is offered 9:00 am to 1:00 pm Eastern Standard Time via Facebook Live.

You will walk out of this class with a brand new YOU and way of thinking about health and life - I guarantee that you will have FUN you will LAUGH a LOT and have your mind BLOWN as to what you are capable of  CREATING IN YOUR LIFE.

Woot! Let's do this!



Tanda Cook
Can’t Make The Scale Budge? Ask Yourself These 7 Questions

Reaching your weight goals can be challenging, yet rewarding, and make you feel at the top of your game. And then other times it can be frustrating and feeling like you’re rolling bolder up hill and getting nowhere.

If you are experiencing the latter, before you get fed up and throw the whole thing out the window ask yourself these questions. As with most things in life, letting go of weight is a multifactorial event with lots of players contributing to the success of it (or lack there of).

It’s not necessarily only what you’re choosing to put in your mouth.

Are you hydrated?

Most of us are chronically dehydrated which you may know, but what you may not know is how dehydration slows our metabolism.


Also, our body has a hard time distinguishing hunger from thirst, so sometimes when your stomach is yelling at you it might be just thirsty. So drink a big ol’ glass of water and if you’re tummy is still rumbling 15 minutes later then eat something.

Another thing that hydrating with water does for us is helps our body let go of toxins.

Our kidneys are one of the main organs that allows are body to release toxins, you are doing them a huge favor by drinking half your body weight in ounces of water a day.

And what counts as water?

Right. Water.

Are you pooping?

Ya. I said it.

As most of us are chronically dehydrated, most of us are also chronically constipated. The good news is that they go hand in hand. So when your body is hydrated its WAY more apt to eliminate both from the kidneys and the gut.

Probiotics are another super awesome way (and a must) to support healthy elimination.

So make sure you’re taking a good probiotic supplement or eating fermented foods like kombucha or kimchi on the daily…so you go…well, on the daily.

Are you sleeping?

Several studies have come out from Harvard Medical School, University of Chicago, and Columbia University showing the importance of sleep and then the impact is has on our weight. Sleep feeds the brain and when it doesn’t have enough it will crave other things…like calories.

And calories mostly in the form of sugar.

Our brain is the biggest consumer of glucose in the body so when its fatigued its gonna crave the next best thing (like a giant latte) – which unfortunately has an effect on our waistline.

So rule of thumb?

7-9 hours of sleep IN TOTAL DARKNESS

Are you moving?

Our bodies were designed to move.

They are made up of pullies and levers and hinges all set up for us to move in all sorts of creative ways (eh-hem go watch the Olympics?)

Moving our bodies not only helps with elimination, detox, and releasing the feel good hormones, it also, (duh) burns calories.

So pick a movement and do it.


Even if its walking up the stairs to work. Don’t draaaaag your feeeeet and waaaaaaaaalk up the staaaaairs.



Get the pic?

Woot! Go play.

How happy are your hormones?

Hormones play a HUGE role in how we hold and carry our weight.

Specifically the thyroid and adrenals.

The thyroid plays a direct role in controlling how fast or slow our metabolism is running. And our adrenals, when under chronic stressful states, secrete cortisol, which can lead to midsection weight gain, insulin issues, and food cravings.

So if you haven’t, go get your hormones checked out to see if they are working for or against you.

Are you being honest with yourself?

This one can be a bit personal and potentially triggering I know.

Aaaaaaand I will tell you more often then not someone with the-scale-not-budging-issue it is unconscious eating or consuming more sugar/inflammatory foods than they thought.

So if this is a potential issue then enrolling an accountability partner is a great place to start. Someone you trust to hold you accountable to your food choice goals.

Or keeping a one week record of everything you’re eating.

Or taking the split second BEFORE you put something in your mouth to ask yourself if this food is ADDING health to your body OR taking health AWAY?

Almonds vs an Almond Joy for example.

The more consciously you eat, chew your food (31 times please), and slow down, the more your body will thank you.

Doctors promise.

And my true hope is that you throw the dang scale away and focus on how you FEEL in this beautiful thing called your body.

Focus on play. Laugh a lot. Breathe deeply. And love every minute you have.


Tanda Cook
5 Foods We Have Wrongfully Demonized

#1 Butter

First off, why do we even need fat? (Cuz that’s what butter is mainly, right?) We need fat to provide concentrated sources of energy, it’s the building block for cell membranes and the precursor for a variety of hormones.

So we HAVE to have it to maintain health and balance.

Now lets talk about sources, in particular, butter.

Butter is awesome. Eat it.

Why you ask?

Many reasons.

Organic pasture butter is a short chain fatty acid, which means it does NOT have to be acted on by the bile salts (our gallbladder), it is DIRECTLY absorbed for energy use (and less likely to cause weight gain FYI).

It contains antimicrobial properties to help protect us from harmful microbes in the gastrointestinal tract. It is one of the greatest sources of fat-soluble vitamins like A, D, E, and K.

Butter is mostly saturated fat. And lets set this straight as to WHY we NEED saturated fat as it has been demonized in the modern American diet.

Saturated fatty acids constitute about half of our cell membranes giving them the rigidity and structure to function optimally.

These fats help our immune system, specifically our white blood cells and enhances their ability to recognize foreign invaders like certain bacteria and viruses.

Saturated fat protects our liver from alcohol and medications.

Saturated fat also is essential for bone health as we need it to properly absorb calcium.

Not convinced yet?

How bout the fact that butter contains conjugated linoleic acid (a form of omega-6) that has strong anti-cancer properties as well as containing lecithin, which assists in the proper metabolism of cholesterol.

So go ahead and eat the stuff.

Oh, and what counts as butter?

That’s right, BUTTER

(not margarine, or Earth Balance, or spray butter, or I Cant Believe Its Not Butter, or some other food-like-item claiming to be a butter-like-thing)

So pass the pasture butter delicousness, please.

#2 Red Meat

I’ve already touched on a lot of this in the AND I think its worth saying again.

Eat red meat. It doesn’t cause heart disease. And meat is only as healthy for you as the health of the animal. So eat sick cows, you, most likely, will be sick too.

Eat healthy animals, you will bring in all sorts of nourishment, vitamins, minerals and essential nutrients into your life and body.

Red meat specifically contains saturated fat, which we have talked about the why around needing it. It also is a great source of vitamin B12 and iron.

Why do we need these?

B12 is needed to prevent anemia, nervous system disorders, helps with energy, feeding our adrenals, maintains fertility and natural growth. Early signs of deficiency usually is indicated when there is irrational anger.

We need good ol’ iron for the health of our blood. And iron found in animal sources, aka: meat and eggs, is more readily absorbed than plant sources.

So, purchase 100%  grass-fed, pasture raised, or grass finished meats. Or even better, raise it yourself if you have the time and space. OR go to your local farmer, shake their hand and buy and support them.

#3 Mayo

This I have noticed as a food that people either LOVE or Despise. I fall in the LOVE category.

And when I tell the closet-lovers-of-mayonnaise that there is no reason to be ashamed its like I have given them the moon.

Think about this. What’s IN mayo?

Give up?

K, ready…egg yolks, mustard, olive oil, lemon, sea salt, vinegar. Boom. Done.

And yes, you can make your own, check out Jamie Oliver’s recipe here.

Pasture raised egg yolks contain the fat soluble vitamins such as vitamin A, D, and A a fat soluble vitamin needed for healthy eyes, hormones, immune system and blood clotting. They also contain essential fatty acids, iron, phosphorus and zinc.

There is nothing in mayo that’s not in homemade dressings. Its whole foods based, tastes amazeballs and goes well in my chicken salad recipe.

It won’t make ya fat if you’re worried about that.

Remember? Sugar has got that one covered for you.

Shhhpread away and enjoy it. And if you’re in the DESPISE camp, well, then use avocados instead.

#4 Bacon

I think there are several crazed websites dedicated to the glorious food. And rightfully so, as everything’s better with it.

And it has gotten a bad wrap mostly because of its fat content.

And I’m gonna say this again, fat doesn’t make you fat, sugar does.

And pork in general has gotten a bad wrap, and no wonder because us Americans have taken a fabulous animal (the pig) and genetically mutated it so it grows super fast, is super lean, and is super unhealthy.

Pork and lard coming from pigs that have been raised on pasture is one of the best and most readily available sources of vitamin D (a fat soluble vitamin so we need to have fat present to absorb and utilize it)

Pigs, like humans, synthesize vitamin D in their skin. So when pigs are raised outdoors, in sunlight and on grass, that meat and fat has a TON of awesome vitamin D in it.

Sodium nitrates and nitrites are used to preserve color and prevent botulism in cured meats and have gotten badmouthed. Nitrites are compounds that are naturally found in plants like celery and butter leaf lettuce. They are also found in our saliva, and the studies done in animals that showed cancer development after large exposure to nitrates/nitrites have been discredited by peer review. So take all that with a grain of salt…eh, or bacon.

I’m more concerned about WHERE and HOW the pig was RAISED than anything else.

Eat bacon. Eat it in moderation. And love every bite.

#5 Eggs

I get this one so much. “I can’t eat eggs, or egg yolks if I have high cholesterol.”


100% false.

Eggs are the bomb. They are one of the most COMPLETE foods on the planet. And as I explained in the 5 Food Myths, if you have high cholesterol I can assure you its not eggs fault.

High cholesterol just tells me that the body is under a lot of physical and emotional stress and cholesterol is being made in the liver to do damage control. Remember 80% of the cholesterol in your body is made by the liver and only 20% is dietary.

And we NEED cholesterol, and here’s why:

It’s a precursor for hormones.

It’s a precursor for vitamin D.

Cholesterol acts as an antioxidant.

It’s needed for proper serotonin receptor function in the brain.

And it helps maintain a healthy intestinal wall and prevent leaky gut.

Eat. Eggs. Pasture raised farm eggs. Please. The whole part. Please.

And a quick thing on purchasing the dang things, which can be SO SUPER overwhelming, when I doubt I follow this logic:

Best option is to raise your own.

If that’s not possible, find a farmer that does.

If that’s not possible buy PASTURE raised eggs.

If you don’t see that option buy organic.

If that’s not an option pick up the cartons and turn them around to see where they are COMING from and buy the eggs that are CLOSEST to YOU.

Terms that mean nothing:

“Free range”

“Vegetarian fed”

“Cage free”

“All natural”

Hope this helps.

Now go eat eggs. 

Tanda Cook
Kale Caesar Salad

Ok, what’s not to love? Kale is awesome (and super good for you). Caesar salad is awesome.
And edible flowers are awesome.
Yes please.


1 bunch kale chopped
1 handful of edible flowers such as pansies, violas, or nasturtiums

Two 2-ounce cans of anchovies (don’t drain them use the juice)
4 egg yolks at room temp
1-2 cloves garlic
2 TBS mustard (Dijon or stoneground… not the nasty yellow stuff)
1 tsp dried oregano
Juice of a lemon and a bit of the rind
1 tsp freshly ground black pepper
2/3 cup olive oil

Chop kale and place in a big bowl. Put all other ingredients in a food processor (minus the olive oil), turn processor on and drizzle in olive oil until blended well. Dress kale, top with flowers and serve.

I keep the dressing in the fridge for up to a week.

Use on eggs, toast, other veggies, or just keep eating kale salad 'cuz its great.

Tanda Cook
Five Tricks To Combating Seasonal Allergies

Spring is in the air as is pollen, trees in bloom, and all sorts of other allergens. This is a SUPER common issue that I very often get questions around.

So what to do when allergy season shows up?

Here are a few MUSTS to help support your immune system, your body and your sanity.

#1. Drink Apple Cider Vinegar

Apple cider vinegar is amazing. You can do just about everything with it from treating your pets skin infections to using it to clean your house.

I’m gonna tell you to drink the stuff. Why?

Because it helps the stomach turn ON when you eat. I recommend drinking a tablespoon before meals to help get your gastric juices flowing so that when partially chewed food shows up the stomach is prepared to break it down to individual nutrients to then be absorbed through the intestines for optimal health.

What does this have to do with allergies?

Welp, if you’re not breaking down, digesting and absorbing your nutrients then your bodies immune system is not getting all the right info to thrive.

It also reduces mucus production and helps your lymphatic system (aka drainage of the body).

If you cant handle drinking it, just take a wiff before meals. When you feel your salivary glands squirm you’re doing the right thing.

I like this one.

#2. Eat Bugs

80% (or more) of our immune system is in our gut. And when I hear allergies, I think IMMUNE HELP, and I go immediately to supporting the GI tract. And the number ONE way to do this is take a probiotic DAILY.


I love this one.

or Arbonnes Digest Plus

contact me here to order.

#3. Eat Bromelain And Papain

Or I could say, “eat pineapple and papaya” because these two are concentrated in the dah-licisousness of pineapple.

But if

1.     You’re not a pineapple or papaya fan


2.     You don’t see yourself eating them day in and day out

then take these guys.

Bromalain and papain are two enzymes that act as anti-inflammatories. Which is super awesome when dealing with allergies.

Because the immune system is “flared up” which triggers the IN-flammatory pathway, we want to set the body up with as much ANTI-inflammatory information as possible. These guys are heros when it comes to that job.

I love these.

#4. Take Quercitin

Quercitin is a flavonoid and acts in the body NATRURAL ANTIHISTAMIN. Ditch that over the counter stuff and eat capers, onions, cranberries and cherries.

Or I love this product.

#5. Eat Your Essential Fatty Acids

Omega 3 to be specific.

As I have said before, omega three is and ESSENTIAL fatty acid, which means we have to consume it from the outside world to maintain health.

Omega 3 plays a lot of roles in the body, and one of them is to push and support the ANTI-inflammatory pathway. And seeing that allergies is a form of inflammation we again, as in #3, we want to give the body as much anti-inflammatory info as we can.

So eat fish, bison, wild game, flax seeds.

And/or take this.

Or this.


Tanda Cook

I so often get the question as to what are my favorite foods or what I think are the healthiest choices.

And while there are SO many foods that I love and SO many foods that add health I thought I would give you some of my foods that I freak out over…inna good way.

#1. KALE

Not gonna lie. I. Love. Kale. If I had it my way I would eat it every day with every meal. We grow it ALMOST year round in our greenhouse and in the off months I buy from our local grocery store.

I love it in shakes. I love kale Cesar.

I love it with this honey mustard dressing

Asian Honey Mustard Dressing Ingredients

¼ c organic olive oil

¼ c sesame oil

½ c apple cider vinegar

¼ c tamari

¼ c honey

½ c Dijon mustard

¼ c sesame seeds

¼ c mustard seeds

Add greens to a large salad bowl. Add all dressing ingredients to a pint jar (with lid) except seeds.

Heat dry skillet to medium-high heat and add seeds.  Occasionally toss seeds to avoid burning until seeds begin to pop off pan like popcorn.

Last, add seeds to jar (they will sizzle when they hit the oil.  My favorite part!).  Close jar with a tight lid and shake until oil and vinegar are emulsified.  Dress salad thoroughly before serving.

If you prefer the greens less raw dress salad 30-60 min before serving to allow the vinegar to wilt the kale.

It's the bomb food to add health. Especially for your liver and kidneys.

Don’t be intimidated. I challenge you to try it if you haven’t. And I encourage you to continue eating it if you have jumped on the kale bandwagon.


I was DISGUSTED with these mini cabbages when I was little. I would roll them across the table to my grandmother so she would have to suffer the mouth flavor torture. They made me gag.

And then something happened.

A monumental shift in my relationship with them. I fell head over heals in love.

Roast them. Steam them. Grill them. Slaw them. Eat them raw. Fry them.

You cant go wrong.

An easy way to try them is roast on a cookie sheet with olive oil salt and pepper and then put them in a bowl and toss with 3 TBS of mustard (good stuff not the yellow crap) and 3 TBS of a jam of your choice like raspberry or boysenberry. Its amazing.

The best brussel sprouts I have ever had are at Uchiko, a restaurant in Austin, Texas, if you ever have the chance to go to Austin (or live there) GO to Uchiko, get the brussel sprouts, I promise you’ll thank me.


The coolest thing about citrus is, well, one, they are beautiful. Two they come in all shapes, sizes, flavors and textures. And three they are SUPER good for your liver, they are high in vitamin C, and help the body detoxify.

I have a citrus stack on my counter, a two tiered serving display filled to the brim with all varieties of lemons, limes, oranges, grapefruits and I juice them all daily to add to my water to flavor it so I’m assured to drink it (not gonna lie, not a huge fan of drinking plain water).

This helps get it down the hatch.

Add them to salads, squeeze them into salad dressings, over roasted veggies, use in place of vinegars, or just sit back, relax and enjoy one on its own.


I love this meat.

Especially slow roasted ribs.

And pork gets a bad wrap. And I think it really really makes a difference in how it was raised. Pigs raised commercially are put in confinement and are highly stressed. And eating that doesn’t necessarily add health to our bodies.

Pigs raised on pasture (as they should be) I think have lots of health benefits.

One in particular is that pork meat and fat is a great source of vitamin D.

Pigs, like us, synthesize vitamin D in their skin and when pigs are raised under the sun (as they should be) they are making bioavailable vitamin D for us humans to utilize.

We get our pork from our neighbor down the road.

If you want to find a source near you look here



You’ve most likely heard me tote this guy before and in short…butter is the bomb, when it comes from healthy, pasture raised cows.

The cool thing about butter is that it’s a short chain fatty acid and doesn’t have to be acted on by the gall bladder to break it down, which means it is directly absorbed through the small intestine and used for energy, which means it’s the LEAST likely fat to cause weight gain, which means you should eat it.

Just sayin’.

It also is the source of the fat-soluble vitamins like A, D, E and K.

But isn’t butter dairy? And aren’t you dairy free?

Yes and yes.

AND butter is mostly a what? Right, a fat. And it is SUPER unlikely that peoples immune systems will react to a fat. They are usually reacting to a sugar or protein.

And in the case of dairy, when you say milk, has a lot of those sugar (lactose) and protein (casein) molecules in it. And peoples immune systems are mounting a response to that and triggering symptoms in the human.

Butter has a TINY amount of lactose and casein so if a person is THAT reactive, they can use Ghee, which is clarified butter, which means that its been very gently heated so that the sugar and proteins rise to the surface, are scraped off so you are just left with the fat.

It’s used a lot in Indian cuisine and has more of a nutty flavor.

Tanda Cook
The Vaccine Debate

Many of you have requested that I touch on the touchiness of vaccines.

So here ya go.

To vaccinate or not to vaccinate?

It’s been so fascinating watching these two camps argue, prove, debate, and ultimately it’s about YOUR education, YOUR choice, and YOUR life.

And I’m not here to prove, convince or sway anyone, this is what I’ve noticed works and doesn’t work around this topic.

The NUMBER ONE issue that I see is that the CURRENT vaccine schedule is not in alignment with how kiddos immune systems develop. Period. And this is a problem.

It’s also a problem that we don’t take the INDIVIDULE into consideration. We just say sweepingly that you either SHOULD or SHOULDN’T vaccinate. That vaccines are either GOOD or BAD.

We don’t ask about the HUMAN involved. How old are they, do they smoke, do they have an infectious disease, were they breast fed, were they a vaginal birth, do they take probiotics, what’s the exposure, what’s the risk of infection…you see?

AND, I feel like we get hyper focused on the thing called THE VACCINE and there is little talk about all the other things that we can be doing to build and support the kiddos (and adults) immune systems.

First, lets do an immune system overview shall we?

K, so what’s the job of the immune system? Simply put they are the cells that roam around the body bumping into things and then asking the question, “are you me? Or are you not me?”

And if the answer is a NOT ME then the cells “tag” that thing (say a virus) and then alerts the rest of the immune system to blow that virus up. When all is tagged and destroyed then the immune system goes back to its business.

And some of those immune cells have memory. Which means that the next time they need to react there are 100-1000 OTHER CELLS that are ready to respond to that particular virus.

So say the initial exposure to that virus took the immune system 7 days to deal with it.

Next time, with the memory cells ready to go, it will take the immune system 3-4 days to deal with it.

So can you see how, in theory, this is why we vaccinate-to make those memory cells. To heal and react faster, better and stronger.

Also, SOME of the memory cells only live for a certain amount of time; this is why some vaccines need “boosters.”

Ok, is that clear?

Now I’m gonna go a little deeper.

There are MANY ways that the immune system can react to things like bacteria, viruses, fungus, food etc...

But for now, and for simplicities sake we are only gonna talk about two of the ways.

They are called Th1 and Th2.

The Th1 response is how the body deals with bacteria and viruses primarily.

The Th2 response is how the body deals with parasites and allergies primarily.


K, when a baby is born they DO NOT HAVE THE Th1 response built yet. So the PRIMARY LINE OF DEFENSE IS Th2.

The IDEAL response to a vaccine is the Th1 response.

And, when do we give most vaccines?

Right, in the FIRST year of life when the kid can only mount a Th2 response; which is NOT ideal because it will drive the ALLERGIC response.

Is this making sense?

This is one of the issues with how we use and administer vaccines.


We are not supporting the natural development of the immune system, and then when something goes haywire we BLAME THE WHAT…?

Right, we immediately blame the vaccine.

So, what to do?

I have a revised vaccines schedule if parents are set on vaccinating, but wanting to honor the kiddos immune development. There are also homeopathic nosodes which is another option for vaccination. There is also the option of not vaccinating at all.

It becomes about the individual. I ask a lot of questions. And I do a LOT of immune support and building.

How do you support the immune systems natural lines of defense you ask?

Awesome question.

Ideally you:

1. Have a vaginal birth.

Lactobacillus and Bifidus (beneficial bacteria) are in the maternal vagina and when the child is born it begins to populate the infants gut and build a healthy immune system.

You had to have a c-section? No problem…that infant HAS OT BE ON LACTOBACILLUS/BIFIDUS PROBIOTIC FROM DAY ONE.

2. You breast feed.

There are antimicrobial compounds in breast milk. There are immune development compounds in breast milk. There are anti-inflammatory compounds in breast milk. Breast milk is the bomb.

You cant breastfeed? No problem. There are some alternatives that can serve to build the child’s development and you better believe that kid is on a PROBIOTIC.

3. Get enough Vitamin D.

In all my years of practice I have NEVER (and never use never unless I mean it) seen someone with a normal vitamin D level. We need to supplement. Your kids too. 1,000-2,000 IUS/day of vitamin D3 is ideal.

AND GET OUTSIDE. For frick sake, put the sunscreen DOWN and go outside. Just don’t BURN. We are addicted to sunscreen, it drives me bananas.

4. Get enough omega-3.

We live in a society where we are consuming too much omega-6, which pushes the INFLAMMATORY pathway, which over time can create disease. Make sure you and your kiddos are getting DHA to help with brain development and immune health.

5. Rub castor oil on their belly at night.

Using castor oil EXTERNALLY can boost the immune system. It helps the liver detox and helps with digestion.

6. Eat whole foods.

Being that I’m a food expert it seems obvious but guess I gotta say it. Eating the rainbow is the best multivitamin there is.

And just for kicks and giggles here are some vaccine “who knews” and other fun facts:

Be careful with vaccinating 12-25 year olds because vaccinating during puberty can trigger autoimmune.

The HPV vaccine is HIGLY controversial, I say JUST DON’T and instead get pap smears regularly please.

0-12 month olds can’t mount a Th1 response because otherwise it would cause brain damage.

After an orgasm there is a burst of cortisol (that suppresses the immune system). And in a female the cortisol diminishes SLOWLY so she doesn’t reject the sperm.

If you shut down a fever you shut down Th1. So then Th2 expands and contributes to ALLERGIES and ASTHMA…fevers are awesome.

The bottom line is it depends on the individual.


Woot! I’m out to go do yoga with my friend.

Tanda Cook
New Recipe - Roasted Spring Beets with Goat Cheese

4 large beets or 6-8 smaller ones

4 TBS olive oil

8 ounces goat cheese, crumbled

¼ cup toasted pine nuts

Sea salt

Fresh ground black pepper

Preheat oven to 400 degrees F. Rub the beets with 2 TBS of the olive oil and wrap each separately with tin foil. Place them in the oven and roast for 1 hour or until they are tender. Remove them from the foil, allow to cool, peel and cut them into 1-inch pieces. Toss them in the remaining 2 TBS of olive oil. Season with the sea salt and black pepper. Arrange on a plate and sprinkle the goat cheese and pine nuts over top.

Try This: serve them over a bed of greens. Try drizzling with a lemon vinaigrette. Serve alongside barbequed chicken, grilled burgers or fish. they also make a great appetizer.

Health Tip: These colorful root veggies are high in vitamins and minerals that help protect against heart disease, diabetes and cancer, especially colon. They are high in folate, manganese and their bright purple/red coloring lets you know they are also high in antioxidants.

Tanda Cook
25,200 Seconds

What would you do if you were stuck with just your mind for 25,200 seconds? What thoughts would you choose? What ideas would you have? What emotions would run the show?

25,200 seconds is another way of saying 7 hours.

One week ago today I was given this challenge in a form I never ever saw coming.

A challenge that could have taken my life.

I woke early as I was preparing for a big day – sitting at the kitchen counter I was catching up on emails and prepping for the class that I was going to teach that night.

I was on the phone with my mom, “I’ll shoot you this email and then I’m going to go out to feed, I’ll be back in about 15 minutes to go over these notes.”

I hung up.

I looked at the temperature. It was 7 degrees.

I had sweatpants on and long-sleeved shirt, no socks – meh, who needs socks I’ll only by 15 minutes.

I put my Carharts on over everything, hat and gloves and went out back with the dogs. I fed all critters, let chickens out and then decided to throw more hay to the horses as it was cold.

We stack our hay 6 tons at a time and it stacks 10-12 feet high. We were getting down to the last layer of it, it was two bales deep and 10-12 ft high. We have an industrial tarp covering the hay and then have it canopied over and bungeed to the ground to form a lean-to of such so we can walk around it and park the wheelbarrow under it etc.

In the past 72 hours we had 12 inches of new snow.

The tarp was heavy with snow.

I was standing underneath the canopy of tarp, in front of the 12 foot wall of hay, opening a new bale. I heard snow sliding and as I looked up the wall of hay toppled down on top of me wrapping me in the tarp, snow, and pile of hay bales.

Each bale of hay is 65-75 lbs – there were close to 30 that fell on top and around me.

I tried to move. I could not. I was pinned, trapped in hay. Snow. And tarp.

I did not have my phone.

I did not have my knife.

It was 8 am. I was supposed to meet Justin at 1:30 for a meeting.

This is not happening, I thought. This is not happening. This cannot be happening.

And then in one small breath I said out loud, this IS happening. God. Please not today. Don’t take me today. This really is happening.

I landed on my right side with my right ear pressed up against my right shoulder and my arm outstretched. I could move nothing except my left hand and my right foot. I can’t breathe, I thought. I can’t breath, there is no air. All I could feel was tarp. There was no air.

If I only had a knife.

If I only had air.

If only I had put socks on.

Think Tanda. Think.

I grabbed a chunk of tarp with my left hand and shimmied it up to my mouth. I gnawed a small hole in the tarp to where I could stick my finger through and I then dug small holes in the snow beneath me to create air pockets.

If I only had a knife.

As long as I have air, I kept thinking, I can stay here for a while.

I just need air.

Its 8:00 am, I thought. No one is expecting me to be anywhere til 1:30 pm.

I kept counting those hours. That’s 5.5 hours from now. Right? Yes. 5.5 hours from now.

As long as I have air.

My body went into shock, convulsing to try and stay warm. In and out of shivering and shock I tried to breathe as shallowly as possible.  

I did not show up to the meeting at 1:30.

Justin came home and dug me out at 3 pm.

7 hours later.

25,200 seconds later.

It was 10 degrees outside.

Many have asked me – how did I choose to spend all of those seconds?

Well, I watched.

I watched my thoughts.

 I watched it wonder to being faced with death. To the ones I was leaving behind. To the reality of what was happening.

I watched my thoughts drift. Drift from death to life. From trust to disbelief. From fear to gratitude.

I walked myself into heart palpitations all the way to total calm.

The circumstances did not change. It was only me and my thoughts that could.

And for all 25,200 seconds I got to choose.

And as each second ticked by – not knowing the outcome – I consciously chose to think calm. Think air. Think circulation. Think shiver. Think gratitude for the extraordinary life that we have created.

Think trust.


Think love.

Pray again.

And when Justin found me 7 hours later under the hundreds of pounds on hay and snow, those seconds didn’t just stop and life took back over.

I STILL have 100% control over what I am thinking and how it is affecting my life positively or negatively.

And so do you.

So I invite you to start with paying attention to your thoughts for ONE of the seconds of the thousands we have a day.

We can transform our life with our thoughts. And it starts with noticing. Noticing what we are choosing to think about every day. What we gravitate towards and then ask yourself if that is serving you. Ask yourself if you were to KEEP thinking those things would you love your life even more …or not.

I could have thought myself into a panic attack. I could have thought myself into claustrophobia. I could have thought myself into hypothermia. I could have thought myself into a lot of things.

And with a lot of prayer, luck and a lot of trust, I thought my way into walking out of that situation totally unscathed.

What are you thinking yourself into?

Pay attention – try it for 25,200 seconds.

Tanda Cook