Wednesday, October 27, 2010

ACHS Diploma in Holistic Health Practice Student Luvena Rangel on ACHS

Thank you, Luvena, for sharing your American College experience with the holistic health community! We're so proud to learn about your life changing experience and look forward to hearing more about your success in holistic health practice!

To learn more about the ACHS Diploma in Holistic Health Practice, visit the ACHS website at or CLICK HERE:

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Soup Swaps Provide Healthy, Nutritious Meals and Community Interaction

Now that fall is here and the weather has turned a bit crisp (it seemed all of a sudden here in Portland, Oregon), average salad intake seems to decline. In cooler weather, many of us crave warm comfort food. Well, there’s no reason to abandon your commitment to your daily serving of fresh veggies. Homemade, veggie-packed soups are a nutritious and flavorful solution.

The good thing about soup …. A few hours in the kitchen can yield several meals. But we know, not everyone is excited about leftovers. Not to worry. We have a solution. Plan a soup swap!

Soup swaps are a great way to ensure you and your family are eating healthy, nutritious meals without having to reinvent the wheel every day. Invite a few of your friends, family members, neighbors, or coworkers to make a batch of their favorite soup (about six individually packaged quarts). Then meet at a central location to swap. The benefits: Soup swapers get to share their favorite recipe and every one leaves with about a week’s worth of healthy, prepared meals. What could be better!

To help plan your first soup swap, check out the article “Soup swaps help stock your freezer and foster friendships” from The Oregonian.

Then, DOWNLOAD your ACHS Wellness Guide for holistic nutrition tips to help you plan your soups.

Have great recipes? POST them here! We’d love to start a soup swap cookbook everyone can share.

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Thursday, October 14, 2010

World Food Day 2010: Sign the Petition to End Hunger

World Food Day 2010 is this Saturday, October 16.

A worldwide event to raise awareness about hunger, World Food Day provides a great opportunity start alleviating hunger in your own community--share info about holistic nutrition, plan a food garden, be active. Education makes a difference!

Sign the petition to end world hunger here:

To find a World Food Day event in your area, visit the World Food Day USA website here:

How will you help raise awareness? Here are 5 simple things you can do year-round to help alleviate hunger:
  1. Make a YouTube video and send the link to everyone you know.
  2. Organize an outreach project on your college campus.
  3. Use the World Food Day curriculum (or develop your own!) and lead a discussion with kids in your local community.
  4. Plant a community food garden.
  5. Share information about World Food Day and healthy nutrition with everyone you can. Talk to people!
Have an event to suggest for World Food Day? Share it with our ACHS and greater holistic health community and post a response. We’d love to hear from you.

The American College has several downloads you can use to start planning your own World Food Day event. Download them here:
  1. ACHS Wellness Guide:
  2. YouTube Videos (ACHStv), Diet and Lifestyle Choices for Health, Part 1-5:
  3. Organic Gardening Guide:
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Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Walnuts and Walnut Oil May Be Useful with Stress

Do you love walnuts? We do! They have such a velvety texture and rich flavor. Plus, walnuts are a heart-healthy food. Walnuts (almonds, hazelnuts, and many other nuts too) have the "good" fats— both monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats—thought to lower bad cholesterol levels and also are a good source of omega-3s, fiber, and vitamin E.

So, we thought you would want to know that new research from Penn State University suggests a diet rich in walnuts and walnut oil may also help a person's body to better manage stress.

Penn State recently release the statement "Walnuts, walnut oil, improve reaction to stress" explaining researchers' findings that "walnuts and walnut oil in the diet lowered both resting blood pressure and blood pressure responses to stress in the laboratory," and that, "average diastolic blood pressure—the "bottom number" or the pressure in the arteries when the heart is resting—was significantly reduced during the diets containing walnuts and walnut oil." Their findings have been reported in the Journal of the American College of Nutrition.

Here's a link to a healthy recipe for Beet Walnut Salad you can make in minutes. In addition to walnut and beets, this recipe also includes apples, celery, and salad greens. Some fresh herbs may make a nice addition, too! What do you think, rosemary? Dill?

If you like this post, help us spread the word. Post a link to your Facebook. Digg it. Stumble it. Tweet it. And ... thanks!

You can read more about this research on EurekAlert! HERE.

Monday, October 11, 2010

ACHS Photo of the Week: Check Out the Honey Bees, Nature's Farmers

Photo of the Week submission "winner" Letisha Smiths says about her photo "Not sure what this plant is. Found on the side of a dried river bed and the honey bees were all over it. Nature's little farmers!"

Our fans are posting guesses on ACHS Facebook. What's your guess? Visit to comment and see previous Photo of the Week submission winners.

To see your botanical photo on ACHS Facebook and blogs, email your photo to with a short descriptive caption. (Of course, you must own distribution rights for the image and be OK with having it posted to ACHS social media.)

Friday, October 8, 2010

Ideas for Your 10/10 Climate Action Party

This Sunday, 10/10/10, people worldwide will start implementing solutions to the climate crisis.

The "Global Work Party" includes solar panels to community gardens, bike workshops to changing the bottom line. Participants take photos of their work to share with the global community in a photo petition demanding solutions to the climate crisis. Here are some inspiring photos from the 350 Action Gallery.

What's your Work Party plan? Here are the top 10 ideas from

#1 Organize a Tree Planting
#2 Go Solar
#3 Work on a Community Garden or an Organic Farm
#4 Go for a Ride
#5 Harness the Wind
#6 Get Efficient
#7 Start a Transition Town
#8 Faith Work
#9 Trash Clean Up
#10 Join the 10:10 Campaign

To have your event plotted on the map, visit their website here:

And ... be sure to take a photo! Share it with so they can add it to the photo petition and post it to ACHS Facebook. We're ready for climate solutions ... How about you?

Thursday, October 7, 2010

FDA Recall, Aromatase Inhibitors: What Does It Mean?

BY Dr. Arianna Staruch, ACHS Academic Dean

In case you've seen the FDA post Aromatase Inhibitors in Products Marketed as Dietary Supplements: Recall are are wondering what it all means ...

Aromatase is a cytochrome P450 (CYP) 19 enzyme that is critical in the metabolism of estrogen. In the ovary it is responsible for de novo production of estrogen from cholesterol. In tissues outside the ovary, aromatase converts androgens secreted by the adrenal gland into estrogen.

Aromatase is present in breast tissue and breast fat. Since 60% of premenopausal and 75% of postmenopausal breast cancer patients have estrogen-dependent tumors, this enzyme has been the target of drugs known as aromatase inhibitors. Breast tumors contain an abnormally high level of aromatase that generates a large amount of estrogen. Drug companies began developing inhibitors by modifying androgens, and 4-hydroxyandrostenedione (generic name of formestane) was the first aromatase inhibitor approved for use in breast cancer.

So how does this relate to dietary supplements? Since aromatase is responsible for converting testosterone to estrogen, and increasing testosterone has long been the goal of body builders, adding aromatase inhibitors was thought to be a new way of increasing testosterone and increasing muscle mass. Basically, it is a continuation of the anabolic steroid story made famous by professional athletes.

There are a number of natural aromatse inhibitors found in plants, such as mangosteen and resveratrol (found in grapes). These tend to have very low activity and studies are being done to look at their long-term effects on breast cancer incidence.

So here is the confusion, one of the products recalled by the FDA is called “iForce – Reversitol”, made by I Force Nutrition, a company that caters to the body building community. Resveratrol itself is NOT being recalled, but this product is. The reason is that this product, and others on the recall list, contain the added substance ATD (1,4,6-Androstatriene-3,17-Dione), which is a synthetic aromatase inhibitor. It is basically an unregulated drug, with drug-like side effects. The I-Force product information claims: “An extremely effective AI (Aromatase-inhibitor), ATD eliminates the production of estrogen in the body” and “Similar to Nolvadex, Trans Resveratrol works at the receptor level to block estrogen receptors."

You may know Nolvadex by its generic name, Tamoxifen.

So from a regulatory standpoint, this company added a drug-like substance to their products, compared their product to a drug in their product materials, and failed to show that this substance is Generally Recognized as Safe (GRAS).

The bottom line is, through this recall the FDA is not attempting to restrict access to the dietary supplement resveratrol, but is warning consumers about potential adverse health effects from a product that is not following FDA guidelines.

For more information about estrogen metabolism, aromatase and aromatase inhibitors, see the following papers:

Biochemistry of Aromatase: Significance to Female Reproductive. Physiology1. Kenneth J. Ryan:

Aromatase Inhibitors in the Treatment of Breast Cancer:

History of Aromatase: Saga of an Important Biological Mediator and Therapeutic Target; R. J. Santen, H. Brodie, E. R. Simpson, P. K. Siiteri and A. Brodie:

5 Essential Oils in 5 Minutes or Less: Our Top 5 Picks for Fall

If you could only pick five essential oils to use for the rest of your life, which would they be? Don’t worry … we can’t answer that question either! But we can recommend five of our favorite essential oils to keep on hand this fall. Here’s a snapshot introduction to our top five picks.

1. Cinnamon Cinnamomum zeylanicum has a spicy aroma and is considered a base to middle note. It blends well with frankincense, orange, and peppermint, forming a lovely seasonal scent. Medicinally, cinnamon has antiseptic, antispasmodic, and bactericidal qualities, making it an effective air purifier. Blend cinnamon with some of our other favorites (like clove, lavender, and peppermint) to create a room spray that’s both seasonal and germicidal.

2. Clove Syzygium aromaticum was an important commodity for the Greeks and Romans and was heavily traded. Clove bud oil has been shown to inhibit the production of free radicals and to have anti-inflammatory and antiviral properties. Recent studies have highlighted its use especially for oral hygiene. Another good oil for travel! You can add 2 drops of the essential oil to 1 cup of water to make an on-hand mouthwash. For aromatherapeutic blends, clove imparts a fresh top note and blends well with bergamot, lavender, vanilla, and ylang ylang.

Read about our other picks--eucalyptus, tea tree Australia, and vetiver--in the October issue of our enewsletter, The Reporter. Download The Reporter HERE.

Help us spread the word about aromatherapy. Use the share button to email this article to a friend. Post a link to your Facebook. Send a tweet. And ... thanks!

*This information is intended for educational purposes only. It is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure, or prevent any disease.

Tuesday, October 5, 2010

Beautiful Garden Guest on Our Last Passionflower

We just snapped this photo from the ACHS Herb Garden. The last passionflower (Passiflora) to bloom attracted a cool little guest to the garden! A grasshopper? A cicada? What do you think?

If you enjoy this image, please share it with your friends and family. Email it. Post the link to your Facebook page. Send it out through Twitter. And ... thanks!

Monday, October 4, 2010

ACHS Graduates Its First Masters in CAM Student: Congratulations Roma!

Congratulations Roma-Dakini Alexander, our first Masters of Science in Complementary Alternative Medicine (CAM) graduate!

“I always had a passion for herbal medicine,” Roma says. “I come from Europe and my grandmother was a Shamanic medicine woman. I was very happy to find a college that offers an MS in CAM and is also accredited by [a body approved by] the U.S. Department of Education and Council for Higher Education Accreditation.”

Roma is a licensed radiation therapist and is Radiation Therapy Program Director for the Kaiser Permanente School of Allied Health Sciences in Richmond, California. She plans to use her ACHS CAM education to organize seminars and meetings, such as the interaction of drugs with herbs and supplements, and to share her knowledge with other medical professionals.

Post a comment for Roma! Share this news with your friends and family via Twitter. Post the link to your Facebook. Help us get the word out about Roma's accomplishment. And ... thanks!

Read more about Roma and the ACHS Masters of Science in CAM HERE!

ACHS Photo of the Week: Butterfly Meets Vitex

Photo of the Week submission "winner" Jan Davidson describes this image as "butterfly enjoying the nectar of the vitex (Vitex agnus-castus) in the backyard."

What a vibrant boost for Monday morning. Thanks, Jan!

Visit ACHS Facebook to see previous Photo of the Week submission winners.

To see your botanical photo on ACHS Facebook and blogs, email your photo to with a short descriptive caption. (Of course, you must own distribution rights for the image and be OK with having it posted to ACHS social media.)

Friday, October 1, 2010

ACHS Master Herbalist Graduate Pamela Morey Recognized By Cambridge Who's Who

Congratulations Pamela Morey, ACHS Master Herbalist graduate! Pamela has been recognized by Cambridge's Who's Who for demonstrating dedication, leadership, and excellence in holistic healing.

"My clients are the most complicated cases," Pamela said in her Who's Who interview. "They come to me asking for help to heal the incurable. I help those no one else can help."

Pamela attributes her success "to her ability to teach clients how to safely remove toxins and parasites from their bodies, a technique she learned from internationally recognized Iridologist, Dr. Bernard Jensen, Ph.D., N.D., D.C. In addition to extensive field training, Ms. Morey (who was certified as an Iridologist by the late Dr. Bernard Jensen) also holds a Bachelor of Arts in Sociology and a Standard life Teaching Credential from California State University at Long Beach, and a Master Herbalist Diploma where she graduated with Honors from Australasian College of Health Sciences [now the American College of Healthcare Sciences]."

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Read the full article Pamela Morey Offers Leading Holistic Therapies in Conjunction with Iridology here.