Our children will be the first generation in our nation’s history to not live as long as their parents, estimates the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). The standard American diet, appropriately shortened as SAD, has filtered down to our children, resulting in the development of life-shortening diseases in kids today before the age of ten. It should not come to any surprise that the standard American diet results in standard American disease.

Despite being the richest nation on the face of the earth with the most abundant supply of affordable healthy food, we have the worst health among the wealthiest 22 countries in the world. Nineteen out of twenty dollars of America’s two trillion spent yearly on “health care” helps fund invasive medical interventions which treat disease rather than prevent it. Nutritionally caused diseases are now the leading cause of death worldwide, many of which stem from our western diet of affluence.

Fresh Fig Pistachio Salad (recipe below).

While understanding where our nation has gone wrong is vital if we are to begin finding victory in our “epidemic gone pandemic,” additional statistics highlighting our downward spiral will not bring us closer to the solution.


What our pharmaceutically driven media does not tell us is the great news that we have an unprecedented opportunity to live longer and healthier than ever before in human history! My mission is to inspire and equip you with the education and resources to take the leap forward so you and future generations can live a whole, abundant life! We have a choice; we do not have to needlessly suffer and prematurely die from preventable diseases.

Over the next several months, I challenge you to take the plunge towards abundant life as I share my tips, recipes, and videos with you. There’s only one condition: it is up to YOU. Changing our health care system requires that we each reclaim full responsibility for our personal health. No one can take ahold of the wheel—you’re the driver. The time is now and our prescription is nutrition! The only health care that will ever solve our nation’s problems is self-care. Will you join me?

Stay tuned for my second video post next week in which I share my favorite healthy rendition of one of America’s favorite snacks!

Download Leanne's Fresh Fig Pistachio Salad recipe.


Fresh Fig Pistachio Salad

• 4 cups greens, (spinach and arugula are exceptional)
• 8 firm-ripe purple figs
• 1/2 c. pistachio nuts
• 1 yellow onion, sliced thin

Vinaigrette Dressing:
• 2 tbsp. extra virgin olive oil, organic
• 2 tbsp. balsamic vinegar
• 1 fresh lemon, juiced
• fresh ground pepper/sea salt, sprinkle to taste

Wash and slice the fresh figs into fours. Place a pile of greens onto four plates, garnishing each with figs, pistachios, and yellow onion. Shake vinaigrette ingredients in lidded jar and lightly drizzle over each salad.

©Leanne Ernster, 2011.

Leanne would like to cheer you on. She asks, “What one small change can you make this week to take the first step toward greater health?”

Leave a note in the comments section below and Leanne will respond personally to you.

Leanne Ernster is a Vancouver-based health food coach and certified fitness trainer on a mission: to share the gift of health through nutrient-rich whole foods. She will be writing a weekly health column for COUV.com.