Curing cancer is a tricky business but if you are well versed in the art of mincing garlic, slicing sweet peppers and milling soup then some of the mystery dissolves. Don’t roll your eyes…give me a chance to explain. Beginning in the 1930’s Max Gerson began treating seriously ill people with food. Beginning in the 1930’s it has been working. Strangely, as American dietary habits get worse and cancer rates skyrocket, we have disregarded this inexpensive holistic method time and time again for the scientifically “supported” method of poisoning our bodies with chemo just enough to kill the cancer but not quite enough to completely kill us. Yet, for many people diagnosed with terminal illness and given just months to live, chemo has failed and Gerson has succeeded. Max passed the torch to his daughter Charlotte who is at the young and prosperous age of 90. Charlotte recently treated and cured her daughter, who was previously living abroad and eating a healthy European diet, from cancer with the Gerson therapy.
So, what does this have to do with Mother’s day and my blog? Well, it is Mother’s Day and I am sitting at a café in University Heights, a darling neighborhood in San Diego after an enlightening and joyful day cooking and preparing Gerson Food and the Gerson Institute. This term, my super awesome bio teacher (shout out to April) forced upon me 20 hours of volunteer work. Now, I totally dig volunteering but this woman also keeps me pretty busy with homework and exams so I was feeling a little hostile thinking about how I was going to incorporate volunteer hours into my term. Moments later I dreamed an impossible dream that I was volunteering at the Gerson Treatment Center in Mexico. Well, that is not an option in reality but the runner up is working at the Institute and after much begging and pleading, my husband and kids let me go for a few days.
I flew in last night and after an hour of run around to get a rental car and a painfully exhausting experience at my hotel involving very drunk young neighbors and paper-thin hotel room walls, I got only a few hours of sleep. Deliriously I hit a coffee shop at 7 AM and made my way to Gerson. Following my instructions, I walked up the back steps and was greeted by Eric, the super friendly, produce/yoga-loving chef that I would be working with that day. I got a quick tour, tied on an apron and began the slicing, dicing, juicing, milling adventure. This week, the Institute hosts “Module 1” a training session for NDs and MDs around the world that are interested in learning more about Gerson. Eric and volunteers prepare their breakfast, snacks and lunch from produce and nothing more. I mean NO seasoning, salt, sugar or oil….this is produce baby…and it tastes good. More volunteers filed in, lovely ladies all there with their own stories. Two amazing gals had brothers that are around 30 years old fighting cancer. Chemo failed them and they are now battling back from impossible prognosis eating the “Gerson Way”. One young gal had lost both of her parents to cancer within two years. Another incredible woman decided to volunteer while job-searching to discover more about helping people and enhancing her own health. This lovely lady and I connected right away, chatting over cutting boards layered with garlic and cauliflower. When she heard about my nasty hotel experience she called up an angel of a friend who was out of town and arranged for me to stay at her house for the rest of my visit free of charge. With all of this organic love around me I felt buzzy (well, love and rarely-ingested caffeine). Then onto lunch, when we fed ourselves. Broccoli that had been steamed with onions, garlic and red peppers, salad garnished with onions, garlic and dill dressed with lemon and apple cider vinegar, spaghetti squash in marinara, vegetable soup (no seasoning) and carrot/apple juice. Now, I am a salt and seasoning fiend and I swear I savored every last bite. It was so clean and delicious. Now for the proverbial cherry on top…I was introduced to my very first loquat for dessert. Lovely loquats picked from the tree outside the back door, OMG, amazing!!!!!
It was so hard to go back to work after lunch, partly due to the amazing feeling in my belly and partly due to the engaging conversation with fascinating, like-minded people. I feel so fortunate to be here, learning and being inspired. I keep asking myself, why wait until I get sick to eat like this? Is it worth it to take the risk with my life or my family’s life? Where is the balance between eating food that we see as “pleasure food” and eating food that keeps us well and energized? How much to I want to gamble with the pervasive threat of cancer? I guess that that is a question that we each get to answer for ourselves. But to know that there is a method to health that is out there that can cure diseases like cancer, arthritis and more is empowering and everyone deserves to know that it is here! So, more on this tomorrow. Follow me for two more days through my “Adventures at Gerson” with new friends and new food! If you want to learn more, check out this incredible documentary http://www.snagfilms.com/films/title/the_gerson_miracle