Sunday, April 8, 2012

Keep Your Coffee Upside-Down!

Hethyr:  “The best part of waking up is Folgers in my butt!”  That’s my dad’s new theme song.  For those of you who remember our post Terry Become a Gerson Person, my dad is now two months into a two-year stint on the Gerson Therapy.

Here’s an excerpt from their website
“The Gerson Therapy is a safe, natural treatment developed by Dr. Max Gerson in the 1920s.  The Therapy activates the body’s extraordinary ability to heal itself through an organic, vegetarian diet, raw juices, coffee enemas and natural supplements.  The Gerson Therapy treats the underlying causes of disease: toxicity and nutritional deficiency.”

When I was home in December, Dad was sleeping/resting about 16-20 hours per day, he would wheeze any time he exerted any energy at all and his ankle was swollen to twice its normal size from the blood clots associated with the cancer.  I honestly didn’t know if I would have the chance to see him again.  Needless to say, it was the hardest goodbye I’ve ever had to say to him when I had to leave to come back to Colorado.  However, NOW he is like a totally different person!  He is off all medication except a couple of baby Aspirin per day, he is up around 8am, busy during the day and hits the hay around 10pm.  While I was home a few weeks ago, I didn’t hear him wheeze once and his ankle is back to its normal size.  He worked on projects around the house, ate with gusto and had an ornery twinkle back in his eyes.  It was amazing!  This time when he dropped me off at the airport, I gave him a great big hug and said with absolute faith, “See you again in a few months!”  I can’t begin to tell you what an incredible feeling that was.

Dad and me, March 2012

And it’s all thanks to a healthy, organic, vegetarian diet, frequent – VERY frequent – raw juices, coffee enemas and natural supplements.  You may be asking yourself, “WHY coffee enemas?”  I did the same, but the Gerson website explains it well.  “The coffee enemas are a must for anyone doing the Gerson Therapy. As the juices begin rebuilding the body and encouraging toxins to be released from the cells into the bloodstream, a great deal of stress is placed upon the liver. The liver alone, especially in cancer patients, cannot deal with a sudden influx of toxins into the bloodstream. The coffee enemas increase liver filtering, greatly aiding the liver’s ability to remove serum toxins.”  So, to make the best of an new and awkward situation, Dad has adopted an awesome sense of humor about the whole thing.  Hence the quote that started this post and the post title itself.  He’s a funny man.  =)

Dad making his carrot-apple juice

One thing which pleasantly surprised me – and, NO, this doesn’t have to do with coffee enemas – was the variety and tastiness of the food.  It is a very restrictive diet, but through cookbooks and my mom’s creativity, my parents eat pretty damn well, if I do say so myself.  One night, my mom, my sister Fayre, my Aunt Vickie and I made dinner for the family and it took us at least 2 hours from start to finish.  I really commend my parents on their commitment to wellness!  I’d love to share a couple of my favorite recipes with you.  I hope you enjoy them as much as we all did!

Vegan Stuffed Peppers with Tomato Sauce
Serves 6
Vegan Stuffed Peppers, Twice Baked Sweet & White Potatoes, Salad
3 large organic tomatoes
½ head organic garlic, peeled
1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar
¼ teaspoon dried dill
6 medium to large organic sweet peppers (any color), tops cut off, seeds and ribs removed
¼ cup apple cider vinegar
1 large organic onion, diced large
3 medium organic celery stalks, sliced ¼-inch
3 medium organic carrots, diced ¼-inch
3-4 cups cooked organic brown rice

1.  Cut an X into the bottom of each tomato's skin.  Blanch tomatoes by bringing a large pot of water to a boil, then dunking tomatoes in the boiling water for about 30 seconds.  Remove tomatoes with a slotted spoon and dunk into a bowl of cold water.  You should then be able to remove the skins easily.
2.  Dice the tomatoes and add to a pot with the peeled garlic, 1 tablespoon apple cider vinegar and dried dill.  Bring to a boil and cook until tender.  Either blend with an immersion blender right in the pot or cool slightly, then blend in a blender or food processor in batches.  Set sauce aside.
3.  Preheat oven to 350°F.  On the stovetop, bring a large pot of water to a boil.  Cook peppers in boiling water for 3 minutes, remove with a slotted spoon and dunk in ice-cold water to stop cooking.  Remove from cold water and set aside.
4.  Using the same pot (minus the water), heat apple cider vinegar over medium heat.  Add chopped onion, celery and carrots and cook, covered, stirring occasionally, until vegetables are softened, about 10-15 minutes.
5.  Mix vegetables with cooked rice, then stuff peppers with the mixture.
6.  Spread about 1/2 cup of the sauce on the bottom of a 9 x 13-inch baking dish, place the peppers on top, then pour the remaining sauce over the top of the peppers.  Bake at 350℉ for 30 minutes.

Twice-Baked Sweet 'n' White Potatoes
Serves 6
1 organic sweet potato
2 organic russet potatoes
Organic soup stock or water
1/4 teaspoon coriander
2 tablespoons organic chives, chopped

1.  Pierce potatoes a couple of times and place in a slow cooker with a small amount of water.  Cover and cook on high for 3-4 hours, or until potatoes are tender.
2.  Preheat oven to 350℉.  Cool potatoes to the touch, then slice in half lengthwise.  Gently scoop out the pulp, leaving the skins intact.  Mash pulp with a little soup stock or water and coriander.
3.  Spoon the mashed potatoes back into the skins and place in a baking dish.  Top with chives and bake for 20-30 minutes.

Apricot Sauce
Garlic Taters & Broccoli with Apricot Sauce
Makes about 6 servings

3/4 cup dried apricots (unsulphured)
3 cups hot water
1 1/2 cups orange or apple juice

1.  Chop the apricots and soak in the water for several hours.
2.  Place softened apricots and remaining liquid in a pot and add juice.  Cook over low heat for 1-1 1/2 hours.  Let cool slightly, then purée with an immersion blender or transfer to a blender and blend.
Note:  This is awesome over lightly steamed broccoli!

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Jon:  With all that we've learned about the incredible health benefits of juicing, naturally we had to try it for ourselves.  I had always had a skeptical view of juicing, mostly because everything that I knew about it came from infomercials; and nothing can destroy your impression of a product like watching hyper-animated salesmen plugging the greatest invention of all time with crazed audience members shouting and waving money in the air.

So we decided to start juicing before we even bought a juicer.  The standard procedure was for me to puree some apples and carrots in the blender and strain the mush through some flour cloth.  It took about ten minutes of squeezing, twisting, and cussing to filter the juice through the cloth into a couple of drinkable shots.  It sucked.  It was probably the worst part of my day.  Thank you Mr. Jack LaLanne... you have brought me great relief.

So nowadays we flood our system with multiple juices per day.  We buy organic apples and carrots by the crate.  It's hard to recognize any positive effects of such an activity when you already feel healthy, but after learning about the amazing benefits of Gerson Therapy and seeing it for ourselves through Terry's experiences, it is easy to imagine that we are doing tremendous good for our bodies.  Although one thing I haven't yet tried is putting coffee up my butt.  Maybe I'll save that one for later.  For now I'll continue the traditional method of inserting my caffeine from the top.

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