Timaree Hagenburger is a Registered Dietitian, with a Bachelor’s Degree in Nutritional Science from California Polytechnic State University, San Luis Obispo and a Master's Degree in Public Health from University of California, Los Angeles. She is a full-time professor at Cosumnes River College, in Nutrition and Foods and the Plant-Based Nutrition & Sustainable Agriculture certificate program, a professional speaker working in corporate wellness and is a Certified Exercise Physiologist through the American College of Sports Medicine. She has had the honor of speaking to groups around the country, from Hawaii to Alaska, from Florida to San Francisco, and most recently in Grand Rapids, Michigan! Timaree has regular segments on California Bountiful TV, writes a monthly column for the Lodi News Sentinel, is a frequent podcast guest, manages her resource-rich website (www.thenutritionprofessor.com ), transitioned her family to plant-based whole foods and is the author of the cookbook titled The Foodie Bar Way: One Meal, Lots of Options, Everyone’s Happy (http://foodiebars.com/). Timaree cherishes opportunities to connect with those around her to share her knowledge and passion for food, cooking, physical activity and good health. Her style is a marked by a blend of fun and practicality, as she offers strategies and inspiration for finding pleasure in preparing and partaking in nourishing meals, because life is better when you "love the food that loves you back."
My name is Paul Chatlin. I was born in Detroit, Michigan and have lived in West Bloomfield, Michigan since 1971. I am 60 years old. In May of 2013, I was diagnosed with Heart Disease. One artery was 100% blocked and two others were 65% blocked. Add to that leaky valves, an enlarged heart, the thickening of the right side of my heart, a left bundled branch block and heart murmur, and I was in seriously bad shape. I could not walk more than 10 steps without excruciating pain in my chest. They did not know if I needed a heart transplant or bypass surgery. I kept praying that this was not happening to me!
I promised that if I could find a way to not have this surgery, I would give back to others. I called it my “gurney promise”. After the heart catheter procedure, a heart transplant was ruled out. I needed triple bypass surgery. My cardiologist gave me two options: bypass surgery or try “Plant Based Nutrition” (PBN). When I said I would try anything other than surgery, he picked up his cell phone while I was being wheeled toward surgery. He called Dr. Caldwell Esselstyn who picked up the phone at 11 p.m. to talk to my doctor. I never knew that Dr. Esselstyn was his mentor in medical school. I was handed the phone and heard Dr. Esselstyn say “go on home and I will call you in the morning”. As I look back I realized that this was the first time I met my cardiologist or Dr. Esselstyn. Quite a leap of faith!
At 8:00 the next morning, Dr. Esselstyn called me and we spoke for an hour. Thus began my Plant Based Nutrition transition. After just 3 weeks my angina disappeared. My cholesterol levels dropped from 347 to 127 in just one year. Today, it is at 100. I have lost 65 pounds, have kept it off and I feel great! I was given 3 miracles. 1. Getting into the Cleveland Clinic in just 3 weeks. 2. Being assigned to a doctor (it could have been so many other doctors) whose mentor was Dr. Caldwell Esselstyn. (I still can’t call him Essy even though he has given me permission to!) 3. Dr. Esselstyn picking up the phone so late that night. It was time to give back!
I attended a Plant Based Cooking Class hosted by the Esselstyns. After all, I was not a cook and did not have a clue about this lifestyle change. The cost was $975.00. I tried to have Blue Cross/Blue Shield reimburse me but was denied. So I thought, “Hey, this is what I can do to give back!” So for the next 3 months I tried to work with BC/BS with no luck. After escalating to the highest level I was denied because they did not have a pay code assigned for cooking classes, and they suggested I work with the legislature for any hope of future change. I pointed out the absurdity of their being willing to cut a check for $125,000 for bypass surgery rather than reimburse me $975.00 so I can learn how to cook Plant Based and insure I never need surgery. It was then I realized the system is broke and I needed a bigger voice. Plant Based Nutrition Support Group was born.
I was still not well. My doctor told me I needed 60-90 days of bed rest to help shrink my enlarged heart and he believed this would stop my valves from leaking. During my bed rest, depression started to creep into my life. I am a dreamer, so depression and negative thoughts where very new to me. I felt as though I was all alone! I decided to put a small ad in the local paper, inviting anyone who was interested to hear my story, see my cupboards and be connected to me. The ad looked something like this:
"I would like to share my experience with any person in our community who may be considering a nutritional change before pills or procedures. Who should consider this type of nutritional change? Any person who has had bypass surgery and hopes that a change in eating habits may prevent additional surgery. Any person who is in need of bypass surgery but would like to change their diet to Whole Food Plant Based in hopes of not needing surgery (like me). Any person whose family has a history of Heart Disease and wishes to alter their current diet to possibly avoid health issues down the road. Any person with Type 2 Diabetes. Any person who would like to try a weight loss program that does not starve you and is sustainable "
In just 2 days 20+ people contacted me and I invited them to my house. What a wonderful evening we had! Some of these wonderful people are still PBNSG members today. Each person attended felt just like me. Alone but hopeful. I did this the following month and another 20 people attended. I thought we must start a Whole Food Plant Based support group to help others. I contacted all of the current Chiefs of Cardiology in our area. I asked them to give me 3 names of cardiologists' that may be interested in educating our community on the benefits of Whole Food/Plant-Based Nutrition. They gave me 3 names. Dr. Joel Kahn was the only one that was repeated by all 3. I called him and we met. It was like at first site. That day Dr. Kahn agreed to assist me on this journey!
In February of 2014, we held our first PBN Support Group meeting. I thought that 20-40 people would be a great showing. 123 people attended! 23 people signed up as volunteers. The meeting was held at Beaumont Hospital in Royal Oak, Michigan. On March 24th, we held our second meeting. I thought there would be a significant drop off of participants, but I was wrong! We again had over 110 people attend. What was interesting is that of the 110 people, 44 of them were new faces. This means that we now had over 220 people in our support group and 40 volunteers. In both April and May we continued to grow and today we have over 5,100 members and over 70 volunteers! We also needed a larger auditorium, so we alternated between two Birmingham High School auditoriums, and we built a web page (www.pbnsg.org). We currently have a presence on Facebook , Instagram, Pinterest and Twitter.
We have started various outreach programs. One of them is our Medical Course curriculum, which we have just presented to Wayne State University Medical School. The authors were 1st and 2nd year medical students from Wayne State, Eastern Michigan, Oakland University, Michigan State Universities and the University of Michigan medical schools. The information is available. Please contact me directly if interested.
PBNSG has relationships with the owners of 30 local restaurants with special plant compliant menus for our members. In 2018, we will conduct over 46 educational classes. Half of these will be cooking classes. We have 30 Small Groups statewide for members who are new to a plant based diet, and want a safe place to discuss their journey. We have created a Plant Based Manual called Healthier Together, which is an 80+ page document on how to start a Plant Based group in your city. This came from my personal diary over a 2 year period. With special thanks to Stephanie Vail we have completed the manual and will make it available by emailing me directly (email@example.com).
I have had the honor and privilege to speak to over 5,000 medical students over the past 4 years. I think about what world changes could occur if just 10% of those future doctors use nutrition as the first line of health improvement before pills or procedures. Lives affected could be in the billions since most doctors practice for 30+ years and see 20+ patients a day. Each success will be talked about and shared. By default the beneficiaries would be our planet and animals.
PBNSG also conducts nutritional tours at grocery stores, runs a walking club, and was selected to host the National Pre-release of “Eating You Alive”. In 2017 we started a new initiative called Doctors teaching Doctors. Four local doctors have offered to teach any doctor, nurse or health professional the benefits of a Whole Food Plant Based Diet. With the leadership of Dr. Robert Breakey, 73 doctors have attended and we still have 35 on the waiting list. With more resources, this program could be reproduced in every city and state in the nation.
No more excuses about not learning nutrition in school, Let PBNSG teach you! Over the past 2 years, I have spoken at 14 General Motors locations and 20 Beaumont Hospital locations, one of the largest health care complexes in the state. You see I am a dreamer! It was my sincere hope that if one hospital or one big company would adopt an awareness of the benefits of WFPB, not only would their productivity improve, but so would their bottom line. By the way last year my wife and I paid close to $2000 in medical insurance and I only spent $188 in medical bills. Why? WFPB!
Please help me help others. Join our group, make a positive life change yourself and then help others by supporting PBNSG. The group meets once a month. The volunteers meet once a month. If you would like more information on our group, please see our web site www.pbnsg.org. We offer education, events, nutritional tours, exercise , fun, and much more. Though no one can go backward and start over, anyone can start now and make a brand new ending!
My name is Lauren Bernick and I am the founder of Wellelephant.com. My Journey began three years ago. I sat in a cardiologist’s office crying my eyes out. He told me that I had a 20% chance of having a heart attack within the next ten years. I was 46 years old. I had a family history, my cholesterol was 288 and I had some calcifications in my arteries. He told me the only thing I could do was eat healthy (which I thought I was), exercise (check) and take a statin to lower my cholesterol (nope).
I was already eating “healthy fats” as the cardiologist instructed and it was getting me nowhere. My father told me about Dr. Esselstyn’s book, Prevent and Reverse Heart Disease. I was encouraged by the fact that it has 30 years of proven results to its credit. It is a very low-fat diet and it is the direct opposite of what my cardiologist recommended to me. Dr. Esselstyn, also a cardiologist, believes the epidemic of so-called "healthy fats" is contributing to heart disease. I was confused at first but, I felt I had nothing left to lose. So, I jumped in full force.
I worked the program. To be honest, it has been difficult at times. It requires planning ahead and schlepping food everywhere I go. I have to take my own dinner when I go to book club. I have to call ahead to restaurants to see if they can make me something appropriate and sometimes I even have to bring my own food to a restaurant. But, so what? I did it. I really have begun to reverse a very nasty disease by eating a low-fat, plant-based diet. I have dropped my cholesterol 110 points without medication, lost nearly 20 pounds and I feel fantastic. Most importantly, I no longer worry that I’m going to drop dead from a heart attack. This website will provide you with all the tools and support you need to begin and maintain your low-fat, plant-based diet. Jump In!
Why Wellelephant? How many times are we asked, “Will I get enough protein?” The answer is: “YES!” That was one of my motivating factors in naming this site, “Well Elephant”. No one asks the strong, plant-eating elephant where she gets her protein from.
~A reflection of her wonderful sense of humor that fueled her time as a standup comic and semi-finalist in Roseanne Barr’s Funniest Mom in America contest and a huge asset developing her site and presenting at her events in Austin, Texas.~
“No one can become a well-balanced herbivore on their own...we need the support of our "herd."” Learn more about Lauren at Wellelephant.com where she shares her recipes, menus, resources and videos to help support each of us to health!
Dr. Kahn is a Summa Cum Laude graduate of the University of Michigan School of Medicine. He is a cardiologist, a Clinical Professor of Medicine at Wayne State University, and is Founder of the Kahn Center for Cardiac Longevity in Bloomfield and Grosse Pointe Farms.
He serves as Reader's Digest Holistic Heart Doc and is a frequent commentator on Fox News, Huffington Post, Mindbodygreen, One Green Planet, Aloha, Forks Over Knives, and other sites. His goal is to prevent 1 million heart attacks through lifestyle education for optimal health and longevity. You can receive his guide to heart attack prevention free at his website. His first book, The Whole Heart Solution, is available widely online and at Reader's Digest The Whole Heart Solution, and his second, Dead Execs Don't Get Bonuses, is available at Amazon.
In December of 2015, Dr. Kahn and his wife Karen partnered with his son Daniel, to open the smash-hit GreenSpace Café, in Ferndale, Michigan. As the largest plant-based restaurant in the Midwest, GreenSpace offers all non-GMO, and mainly organic certified cuisine - including 'Esselstyn-style oil-free plant-pure' options.
Stephanie Vail became the Executive Director of PBNSG in December, 2016. She is a graduate of the University of Michigan School of Social Work with a Masters in Social Welfare Administration as well as a Masters in English Language from the UM-Rackham Graduate School. She also holds a Masters in Library and Information Science from Wayne State University.
She brings a lifelong interest in healthy eating to PBNSG, has been a vegetarian since an undergraduate, and slowly transitioned to whole food plant-based eating after learning about Dean Ornish in the early 1990s.
Previously, Ms. Vail worked as an administrator at the UM Institute of Social Research-CRUSK, the American Red Cross/Wolverine Blood Region in Flint, Michigan, the Washtenaw County Domestic Violence Project, Inc. /SAFE House and was an Assistant to the Director of the Women’s Crisis Center in Ann Arbor, Michigan. She has volunteered with groups such as La Leche League, The Fourth Avenue People’s Food Cooperative, The Gloria Dei Food Coop, and various natural foods warehouse buying clubs in Michigan.
Cathy Katin-Grazzini, plant-based chef, cooking instructor, nutritional coach, and food blogger, is the Food Editor of VegWorld Magazine, Plant-Based Culinary Medicine Educator and Chef at Matrix Personalized Medicine (New Canaan, Connecticut), and owner of Cathy's Kitchen Prescription, LLC (Ridgefield, Connecticut).
When Cathy isn't cooking up a storm, inventing, fermenting, dehydrating, and creating managed chaos in her test kitchen, she's teaching students, medical practitioners, and fellow chefs about the joys and health benefits of cooking with plants.
For Cathy's recipes, videos, blog, upcoming events and a gallery of her dishes, please visit www.cathyskitchenprescription.com.
Ruchelle 'Chelly' Williams, CHC, founder and director of Divine Health & Wellness, is a renowned health, nutrition and wellness counselor, writer, consultant, educator, speaker, educational program creator, raw, vegan & plant-based chef, fitness trainer and mom to 2 young vegan adults. She loves her job because on a daily business she gets to help amazing people realize their true purpose and potential by enhancing their journey and with baby steps grasp and achieve their wellness goals. Chelly works with cancer patients who want to heal naturally, as well as patients with high blood pressure, diabetes and high cholesterol!
Chelly has managed detox retreats at DC's premier integrative medical and biological dentistry center, NIHAdc.com, and had her own line of raw vegan food sold in New Jersey and requested by Whole Foods, My Organic Market, and The Common Market in the DC Metro area.
Chelly also helps college students eat vegan and healthy while on campus!
Chelly has been a vegan for 14 years and a raw vegan for the last 6 years. She has relationships with many celebrities as well as giants in the raw, vegan, and plant based community and has had the pleasure of being a student, co-presenter, or featured chef at many events across the country. Chelly was trained by Chef Alissa Cohen in Boston, MA and the head chef of her restaurants, Chef Leah Dubois.
She is a graduate of the Institute for Integrative Nutrition and received her certification from Columbia University, Purchase College through the State University of NY and the American Association of Drugless Practitioners. She was invited to speak at her graduation and to return as a visiting teacher.
I can help you learn the art are eating healthy food that taste amazing! ~ Chelly
- Founder of I Have Divine Health.com
- Head Chef ~ Chelly's Raw & Plant-based Kitchen, personal chef service
- Certified Health, Nutrition and Wellness Counselor
- Certified Group Fitness Trainer
- Licensed Zumba Instructor
- Speaker, keynotes at events, corporations, universities, women's groups, churches and schools
- Mom to 2 Veg Rawkin' Teens ages 18 and 16 who love to eat vegetables!
Ruchelle Williams - Plant Based Holistic Wellness Nutrition Practitioner and Chef!
"Serving the Message of Health One Dish at a Time"
Chelly in the Raw will cater to your personal, corporate or group needs just call..
Dr. Breakey has over 20 years of experience in family medicine, developing special interest in nutrition, preventive medicine, patient education and positive wellness.
- St. Joseph Mercy Ann Arbor
- University of Michigan Hospital
PHILOSOPHY OF CARE
“I like to put the “Care” first in health care, and believe in service excellence, high quality medical care and employing a partnership approach to health care with each patient that I have the pleasure of serving. By employing a coordinated, team oriented approach, we can design a customized plan of care that emphasizes positive wellness, self sufficiency, and, when necessary, guidance in navigating our larger and very complex health care system.”
Medical EducationUniversity of Michigan, 1981
ResidencyUniversity of Wisconsin 1984
Board CertificationsAmerican Board of Family Practice 1990
Honors and AwardsBest Doctors 2011-2012
Best Doctors 2013-2014
Best Doctors 2015-2016
Diabetes Nurse Practitioner, Premier Internists
Caroline Trapp is nurse practitioner specializing in the care of people with diabetes. Dr. Trapp received her Bachelor of Science in Nursing from the University of Michigan in Ann Arbor; her Masters of Science in community health nursing from the University of Pennsylvania in Philadelphia, and her Doctor of Nursing Practice from Madonna University in Livonia, Michigan. She has been board certified in adult primary care, advanced diabetes management, and diabetes education. She has worked with people with diabetes for more than 20 years, and is passionate about supporting patients to reduce/eliminate the need for medication and maximize effective lifestyle interventions.
Dr. Trapp is an adjunct faculty member at the University of Michigan School of Nursing, and the director of diabetes education and care with the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine. She was awarded Oakland University’s Nightingale Award for Education and Research in 2012 and inducted as a Fellow of the American Association of Nurse Practitioners in 2013.
In her work outside of Premier, Dr. Trapp manages a variety of diabetes prevention and reversal initiatives, including the development and national distribution of nutrition education resources for consumers and health care professionals. She has co-authored articles on plant-based nutrition, and presented at conferences and educational meetings across the U.S. and in China, Canada, the Marshall Islands and the Republic of Macedonia. In 2014, she was invited to give oral testimony to the USDA/HHS Dietary Guidelines Advisory Group. She is actively involved in ongoing partnerships with Native American organizations to address the food-related epidemic of type 2 diabetes. As part of this effort, she has produced unique materials, including videos and a recipe booklet (available at www.ThePowerPlate.org) that were Favorably Reviewed by the American Association of Diabetes Educators. Most recently, she has established a committee of health educators from 14 tribal communities in New Mexico and Arizona, who are collaborating on a Diabetes Prevention Program curriculum that reflects Native American culture and plant-based nutrition.
Dr. Trapp also serves as a volunteer diabetes advisor to the Plant Based Nutrition Support Group (pbnsg.org) of Southeastern Michigan.
In honor of her outstanding work, Dr. Trapp was inducted as a Fellow of the American Association of Nurse Practitioners in 2013; awarded Oakland University’s Nightingale Award for Education and Research in 2012; and was a finalist for the American Association of Diabetes Educator's 2009 Diabetes Educator of the Year Award.
When she’s not trying to stop the over-reliance on medication and under-utilization of WFPB foods for diabetes, Caroline loves to hang out with family and friends, travel the world, cook from one of her 90+ vegan cookbooks (who knew there were so many available?!); and rescue cats.
Jamie is a Family Medicine Resident Physician in the St. John Providence Hospital System. She has over 10 years of experience in plant-based nutrition and she is passionate about improving community and population health. In her practice, Jamie considers the plant-based diet to be optimal for the prevention and treatment of chronic diseases. Jamie is also a leader of the PBNSG plant-based curriculum committee and helped review over 200 studies illustrating the relationship between food and chronic diseases.
Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine, Michigan State University: 2017
Master of Public Health, Michigan State University: 2017
Bachelor of Business Administration: Western Michigan University: 2004
Philosophy of Care:
“I want to help give every one of my patients their very best shot at a happy, healthy life. Each of us is in the driver’s seat when it comes to our own health destiny. This is not taught in medical school, unfortunately, but the science is clear - there is no better way to ensure a disease-free life than by being consistently mindful about what we eat. My goal is to make sure my patients understand the power of plant-based foods to maintain and restore health. If I can help others discover the joy of investing in their health and making good choices, I’ve fulfilled my life mission.”