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Brain Power – One Bite at a Time

Brain Power – One Bite at a Time

March 5, 2015

Vol. 13, Issue 4

It’s time to celebrate another Rebecca Katz cookbook. If you’ve been with us for a while, you know I’m a huge fan. Her books are always beautiful, and fun to read (as well as educational), and the food that comes out of the kitchen is outstanding. In one word — Yummy! This latest one focuses on foods for the brain, and who couldn’t use a little help with brain fog and mood enhancement? Count me in.

Although I’ve only had the book a couple of weeks, I have already experimented with High-Flying Turkey Black Bean Chili — delish! Provençal Seafood Stew with Parsley Pistou — Ahh…food for a seafood lover’s brain and soul. And this sweet delight, Lola’s Favorite Almond Chocolate Chip Cookies – easy, and guaranteed to elevate your mood.

Here’s the scoop (no pun intended):

Rebecca Katz:

The Healthy Mind Cookbook

We all know the age-old adage, “You are what you eat,” but research over the past few years has revealed that what we put on the end of our fork impacts the functionality of our brains as well as our bodies, including our memories, The-Healthy-Mind-Cookbook-325x435moods, and mental health. Rebecca Katz, a chef, nutritionist, speaker, author and educator, has translated the scientific findings of hundreds of cutting-edge studies into a collection of mouth-watering recipes in her fourth cookbook, The Healthy Mind Cookbook: Big-Flavor Recipes to Enhance Brain Function, Mood, Memory, and Mental Clarity (February 10, 2015, Ten Speed Press).

I should preface my introduction to the book by giving you a little idea of what she is like on stage. Reading her cookbooks, you’ll find her personable and fun — and that’s exactly what she’s like presenting from the stage (and backstage, as well, I might add). I wrote about my experience with her last year when she came to Portland and did a cooking demo program for Legacy Health’s “Meals that Heal” series. You can read about it here.

Depending on your program requirements, she can present either a straight program (with PowerPoint), or a program with a cooking demo. Either version can feature a theme from any one of her books. Her first concern — whether feeding our brains or recovering from cancer, or just plain living healthy — is that all of the factors, flavors, and ingredients have to be delicious. That is always the key to Rebecca’s cooking – not to mention the fun she has along the way.

Let me give you a sample of her at work. In the video I’m sharing with you here, she is cooking in her own kitchen, but it will give you an idea of her informative and entertaining style — and you’ll get to learn how to make Cozy Lentil Soup with Delicata Squash, along with some helpful culinary tips and tricks.CookingVideoStill copy

Get the recipe here:  (NOTE: I don’t happen to be a fan of lentils, but Rebecca said we can substitute other beans.)

In the book, Rebecca identifies the top brain boosting ingredients (85, to be precise) – such as garlic, walnuts, pomegranates, pumpkin seeds, and wild salmon. She brings back her Culinary Pharmacy, which she introduced in her previous books, that tells readers exactly which foods combat issues like stress, anxiety, depression, memory, alertness, and even ADHD.

Ginger, for example, is an antioxidant powerhouse: it improves cognitive functioning, focus, and memory. She incorporates it plus many other brain-energizing foods into recipes like Roasted Ginger Salmon with Pomegranate Olive Mint Salsa, and Coconut Ginger Lime Kale. The book is divided into sections: Soups (Roasted Asparagus Soup with Pistachio Cream); Vegetables (Kale Quinoa Salad with Red Grapes); Proteins (Thai It Up Steak Salad); Anytime Foods (Rosemary and Pear Muffins); Dollops (Meyer Lemon Balsamic Vinaigrette); Tonics and Elixirs (Pomegranate Mock Mojito); and Sweet Bites (Chocolate Cherry Walnut Truffles).

Rebecca also offers tips to help home cooks reduce their recipe-reading anxiety, figure out their own kitchen choreography, and assemble a culinary arsenal of the right kitchen tools. (Her talent at this is beautifully demonstrated in the video noted above). Plus easy tricks like incorporating FASS – Fat, Acid, Salt, Sweet – to fine tune flavors utilizing only pantry staples.

As always, if you’re interested in knowing more or booking her for an event, give me a call at 503-699-5031 or send me an email, at



to DANCE to Favorite Music

Have you ever waited for something for a long time, and then when it happens, it’s even better than you could have imagined? Well, last weekend I got to dance Nia to Jana Stanfield’s music in a brand new routine created by Nia Black Belt trainer, Winalee Zeeb (who is also one of our speakers!) It was truly a dream come true.

Shortly after I was first introduced to Jana and her music, (by speaker friend Holly Stiel), I took a cassette tape (okay, now I am dating myself!) of “I”m Not Lost, I’m Exploring” on a women’s retreat. It was a song I could relate to — I even printed the words out and we sang it on the bus.

Well, Winalee fell in love with Jana’s songs and lyrics, and next thing I knew, we were dancing to them in our Nia classes that fall. That was 1995.

Obviously, it is almost 20 years later, so what took so long? Well, until recently, all Nia routines were only choreographed for taping and teaching by the creators of Nia, Debbie and Carlos. This is the first one that Winalee has done completely on her own — well, with a little help from Jana in selecting the songs — so it is truly special and heartfelt for her.

You don’t have to be in a Nia class to enjoy this fabulous compilation of motivational, affirmative music.

You can order and download it here.BEAUTIFUL Cover

“You inspire me, to live courageously. How beautiful you are.”

Open your mind with a collection of Jana Stanfield’s lyrics to live by…  wisdom and rhythm that speaks to the soul of who we really are…beautiful, brave explorers on the journey of a lifetime.  Enjoy acoustic guitar-based arrangements, pulsing with contemporary beats to move your heart and move your feet.

It will speak to your soul. I’ve found the lyrics popping into my head all week. Until next time, take care of yourself for your well being and those you love.

Yours truly,


For Your Well Being is published bi-weekly. We bring you insider speaker reports, exclusive stories about special events around the country, meeting planner tips, and fun stuff from the worlds of health and well being. Be well and be in the know!

The Speak Well Being Group is a specialized speakers bureau, focusing on speakers for hospital-sponsored community events, healthcare organizations, nurses, conferences and women’s groups. Our speakers are hand-selected. They are not only experts in their fields, they connect with their audiences while bringing them life-changing information, smiles of recognition and ultimately a sense of well being and hope.

Finding the perfect keynote speaker for your special event or conference is my personal passion, not just once, but year after year. It brings me great joy to know that your audience was delighted and moved by the speaker we selected together. I’m committed to making the process easy, pleasant and fun.


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