Boosting Health Through Building Community

Hay House Radio Episode Recap

  • Episode Name: “Boosting Health Through Building Community”
  • Live Broadcast: August 8th, 2016 at 3:00 pm Pacific Time

Episode Replays: Mondays at 11:00 pm Pacific Time / 2:00 am Eastern Time and Sundays at 2:00 pm Pacific Time / 5:00 pm Eastern Time

Episode Summary Re-cap

Is healthy, affordable, sustainable food hard to find?

Discover practical tips to find healthy, sustainable, humanely raised food in your community from farms to restaurants to grocery stores. Find out how to enjoy your food, boost your health and feel connected to your community. Plus, tips to stretch your food budget!

Special Guest: Michelle Lerach Michelle is a lawyer, entrepreneur and activist. In 2008, she received the Consumer Attorneys of California, Women’s Law Caucus Outstanding Consumer Advocate Award, before leaving the practice to commit herself fully to social activism. An “agvocate” for sustainable food, she founded Berry Good Night and Berry Good Food Foundation to advance a healthy, integrated food system by educating, connecting and supporting food producers and consumers.

An outspoken critic of current GMO labeling policy, she currently serves on the steering committee of Californians for GE Labeling, which is spearheading the renewed effort to achieve GMO labeling in California in 2016. She is also a consultant to the Liberian Ministry of Gender & Development; the Vice Chair of the Board of the University of California Press Foundation, focused on progressive scholarship, particularly in the area of food; a member of the Advisory Board of the Women Peacemakers Program at the Kroc Institute for Peace & Justice; and a member of the Advisory Board for Seats at the Table, a coordinated group of international NGOs focused on gender issues in West Africa.

berrygoodfood.org | Facebook Re-Imagining Food Waste Event

Michelle Lerach’s Upcoming Free Educational Events (Attend In person or Online)

EventPicFoodWasteMichelleLearach EventPicSafeHarborMichelleLerach

Berry Good Food Foundation Past Events for Free Online Viewing

How to Find Farmers, Chefs, Restaurants and Food Advocates In Your Community

  • Cold Call People – Reach out to farmers, food writers, food activists or magazines, chefs, fishmongers and other locals in the food industry. Many are very willing to talk with you and connect you with other like-minded people in your area. If you are interested in speaking with chefs, plan a time when the restaurant is not busy. Many love to share their passion for food and sourcing quality ingredients.
  • Check Meetup.com or your local newspaper for foodie events. Some local food magazines, like Edible Magazine (ediblecommunities.com), have monthly gatherings where you can network with people in the food industry or healthy food enthusiasts. You may also find tasting events, health fairs, and health food store-sponsored events.
  • Organize Your Own Meetings or Events – If you have a talent for organizing, invite food industry people over for tea, a potluck or a meeting to discuss how to source affordable, sustainable food.
  • Ask for Help & Listen – Most people who are committed to healthy, sustainable food are always willing to share ideas, contacts, and solutions. Chances are, as you ask for help or contacts, you will find that you can also support someone else seeking a solution for their challenge as well. Pretty soon, everyone is helping each other and you are creating a supportive community!
  • Focus on What You Can Do & Find Others Who Can Fill the Gaps – Maybe you are wonderful at networking, but not as good at organizing events. Find someone who’s a good planner and ask them to take on the tasks you are not as good at. Build a team of support so that you don’t have to do everything yourself!
  • Find Common Ground – Look for something you can all agree upon and start there. For example, if you are vegan and having a hard time finding other vegans in your area, find somewhere to start. Perhaps you can find organic farmers or people who care about sustainability or animal rights. Find a starting point for the change you seek and work from there.

Tips for Finding Healthy, Sustainable & Affordable Food Options

  • Shop at your local farmers’ market. You can often save money by purchasing food at a farmer’s market. Often, if you go during the last hour of the market, prices are cut in half.
  • Go to an organic farm and buy directly from the farmer. Many organ­ic farms sell direct to customers or even have Community Supported Agriculture (CSA) programs where you can buy family-sized portions of vegetables, animal pro­tein (like meat, poultry, eggs, and raw butter), and sometimes even fresh-cut flowers. Some communities have Amish farms that sell directly to customers. Find real food, farmers’ markets, and farmers in your area: localharvest.org
  • Buy in bulk online or in the store. You can often get discounts when buy­ing in bulk. Many health-food stores have 10 to 15 percent off cases, for example.
  • Get together with friends or groups and buy in bulk. For example, a mom on a tight budget in San Diego began a Facebook group to reach out to people in her local area who wanted to buy healthy food at a discount. She contacted local and online sellers of organic foods and supplements and got wholesale prices, then start­ed a shopping club. In this way, she and many other people in the community got to share in discounted prices. This is a great idea made much easier by social media Even if you don’t have a large group to join together with, small groups of friends can get together to buy grass-fed meat, herbs and spices, and vegetables.
  • Investigate subscription programs. Online stores like Amazon.com have monthly subscription programs where you can buy at a lower price.
  • Learn to garden, even indoors! If you have the space, gardening is a great way to connect with nature and eat well. Yet even if you have limited space or no outdoor space at all, there are wonder­ful options for gardening! You may enjoy options like the AeroGarden, which allows you to grow vegetables, herbs or even flowers indoors and hydroponically (that is, with organic liquid nutrients rather than soil). Hydroponics allows you to grow vegetables quickly in small indoor areas. Another option is to have an herb garden in your kitchen, near a window with plenty of sun.
  • Buy once and regrow your produce. Certain vegetables can actually be regrown from the base that you often throw away! For instance, take the bottom (base) of a bunch of celery and place it, cut side facing up, in a bowl of warm water near a sunny window (change the water every two days). In about five to seven days, you will see yellow, then green, leaves sprouting. At this point, you can put the celery into a container with soil covering all but the small new leaves. Water generously and watch the new celery grow! Lettuce and bok choy can be regrown in much the same way.

Green onions are even easier: put the white bases in a jar of water, place it in a sunny area, and watch as they regrow very quickly. Make sure to change the water every couple of days.

  • Stretch your food, like your ancestors did. Our ancestors knew how to stretch food in ways most of us aren’t taught today. Bone and vegetable broth is an example of stretching food: After eating meat or poultry, you take the bones and make a healthy, nourishing broth. The same is true for the vegetable scraps you can use in broths. What was once considered trash can actually be used to nourish the body. This is a great money-saving technique!
  • Love eating in. Eating at home saves a lot of money, even when you’re eat­ing organically! Many restaurants serving non-organic food cost more than eating organic food at home. Have fun with home- meal preparation.
  • Bag your lunch. If you count up the money spent on eating lunches out during your work week, even for seemingly affordable lunches, you can see how easily you could set aside that budget for healthy food. Bagging your lunch takes planning, but the more you make home-cooked meals, the more leftovers you have to pack for lunch the next day!

Health Tip of the Day

Here’s another way to stretch your budget! Homemade personal care products allow you to save money and reduce a lot of toxic chemicals often found in conventional products. Make your own nose pore skin cleanser that works better than chemical-filled Biore strips! Remove blackheads and clogged pores gently, while softening and firming your skin.


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As a coach, writer and recovered former executive, I understand the challenges of creating a balanced, healthy lifestyle when over-scheduled. In my journey to radiant health, I created a whole health system of eating, exercise, renewal and recharging -- a roadmap toward health & vitality. I empower clients to create their own whole health systems, in their own unique ways. I have seen amazing results in working with my clients!