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Melody Gardot

Q: How did you start with macrobiotics?

I started with Macrobiotics after I was in a severe auto accident. I had been in the hands of many doctors here who had perscribed a great deal of medication for everything from pain to nervous system disorders. After about 11 months with little or no relief from pain and neurological issues, I became determined to find another way to solve those problems.

It was by chance that I discovered macrobiotics, but one of the best things I have ever chanced upon!
A friend had been very much involved with Usui Reiki and Macrobiotic Shiatsu, and she let me borrow a book of hers that talked about Macrobiotics. I was immediately intrigued and wanted to learn more. So I purchased several books and began to read and cook for several hours a day. By the time I had learned how to cook appropriately, I was feeling 30% better. ( A welcome change).

Q: How has macrobiotics helped you?

Not only did my pain levels come down, but my mental ability to "deal" with the pain was much better. I felt more calm and relaxed and accepted things much easier than before. And I found that incorporating the hours of cooking into my day was a way to keep my mind occupied on other things besides my condition.

It was amazing to see how quickly my body changed. At first I lost some weight. Then I gained it back. I assume this was as my body was adjusting to the foods and the way in which they were prepared (probably had something to do with how little I knew how to make in the beginning as well!!!). My insomnia gradually ceased and I was able to rest more easily.

I went from having daily migraines as a result of occipital neuralgia attacks, to having none except on rare occasion (usually affected by weather). My physical condition changed in a muscular sense. I had suffered a great deal from hypertonicity of the muscles as a result of brain injury and structural misallignment of my pelvis. Upon beginning the diet this did not change. But three months into the diet, I noticied bow much less I was needed deep tissue work to release these muscles. My therapy changed and less focus was placed on that issue.

Overall, my body changed in many ways for the better. This, accompanied by a more stable, more patient mind was a direct result of eating macrobiotics.

Q: What do you offer and specialise in?

I am not a teacher of Macrobiotics, just a practitioner. I am a musician, despite being disabled after this accident. Its odd, because many people expect miracles to be complete. People who consider Macrobiotics for a cure for Cancer, or Physical problems may have complete and total recoveries if they stick to that diet/lifestyle. I have had more recovery than I expected with this newfound lifestyle.
But in some ways I am still disabled. Things that have not changed include my skeletal allignment issues.
(there is a rotation and shift in my pelvis as a result of the damage sustained upon impact), and an autonomic nervous system dysfunction (which makes me photosensitive and hyperacusis prone).

Yet, when you look down the long list of diagnosis and assessments and see the amount of "conditions" which were relieved by Macrobiotics, it would be safe to say that 90% of the problems I had prior to beginning Macribiotics were resolved. Those are great odds. And I couldnt be happier with that realization.

I will likely continue this way of life forever, as I have found it so rewarding.

Q: What one piece of advice would you give to someone trying macrobiotics
for the first time?

Here are some things I wrote down as there is not just one thing I would suggest 10 tips.


1. KEEP COOKING BOOKS HANDY for referring to recipes. It keeps you from forgetting exactly what you need and how to cook things when you're just beginning.

2. KEEP FOOD SUPPLIES ORGANIZED to eliminate scavenger hunts while your items are cooking. Keep all your grains in containers clearly marked, all your refrigerated items neat and all your seaweeds together. Do this for your pots and cooking supplies as well.

3. THINK "OUT WITH THE BAD AND IN WITH THE GOOD" when it comes to food shopping. By clearing out your cabinet of the foods that you used to eat you will be less likely to eat them again. Every once in a while you can reward yourself with a treat, just make sure it's not overkill or else you're back to square one. I like to have a sweet treat once in a blue moon. Mochi is particularly good, but if this isn't quite your thing, try a small serving of sorbet on rare occasion.

4. KEEP TRACK OF WHAT YOU'RE EATING with a calendar noting the breakfast lunch and dinners that you plan to eat each day. Start with a weekly calendar. This way, you know that you're balancing meals throughout the day not just taking certain meals and cooking them again and again. Macrobiotics is about balance and just because you're cooking macrobiotic foods doesn't mean you're getting the right ones.

5. KEEP TRACK OF HOW YOU FEEL while you are in the midst of adjusting. It took me three months to notice anything. I had a great deal of toxicity from medication and months of eating the wrong foods that needed to be eliminated from my body. Those months were hard adjusting to the new food and how my body felt. By keeping track I was able to see the improvements

6. PACK A TO GO BAG so that when you are out you don't reach for junk. It s the hardest thing to deal with road cravings especially when you are bombarded by temptation after temptation screaming "24 hour' or "drive though". By keeping food with you in a lunch bag, you can resist temptation and eat what you should.

7. EAT AT HOME because you'll find it's hard to figure out what's in the foods you order in restaurants. Some places use oil some don't. Some places microwave, some don't. Since you are going to need every bit of help you can get to make sure you are really making a change for the good, pass on lunch with friends out at your old favorite restaurant and instead offer to cook for them at your place

8. SHARE THE JOY WITH A FRIEND who is eating macrobiotic as well. Some people find it hard to do lifestyle changes alone. Macrobiotics can be as strict or as loose as you like, but you'll feel better knowing you're not alone in your change. Go to health stores and start up conversation with someone who is buying the same tofu as you. It might turn out they eat macrobiotic too. Go to a yoga center and meet people. Often people who practice Yoga look to macrobiotics for health. No matter how you do it, find a friend to share the joy of living life with macrobiotics

9. INCORPORATE OTHER MEANS OF HEALTHY LIVING with yoga, tai chi or meditation. Doing so will keep you calmer and promote happiness. The breathing exercises involved help to soothe your nerves and ease your mind so you can appreciate each day more so. One of the concepts of macrobiotics is to sit down and eat your meal slowly so you enjoy each meal and you are thankful for the food before you. In modern society people are lucky if they get a 30 minute lunch break so it's very important to keep yourself calm and chew your food well despite being on a tight schedule. Breathing exercises can help in this way.

10. STAY MOTIVATED by rewarding yourself for a job well done. Keep yourself motivated by referring to your journal that described how you feel. Every once in a while look back to day one, when you were just beginning. Look in awe at the improvement you have made and the knowledge you have gained. You learn by doing and with macrobiotics, you'll quickly see that it is much more than a diet, it's a lifestyle. And the rewards of living this way are far greater than you could have ever imagined.

Q: What is your favorite recipe?

Its simple but I love rice balls to come with me wherever i go

Just cook Brown Rice as indicated in the Michio Kushi books

After cooking brown rice,
take a small piece of umeboshi plum and place inside of a ball of rice that fits in your fist.
Push your thumb into the ball, insert plum and cover with surrounding rice.
I usually make 5-9 balls at a time (depending on size)
roll them in gomashio when they are finished and put in a container to go.
they keep me from getting too hungry when im going from appointment to appointment.

Click here to buy this CD

Melody Gardot -some lessons

Melody Gardot is just pure class..So young,yet with a voice and songwriting inspiration that exudes all the quiet soulful authority and gravity you usually associate only with old time Jazz/Blues legends. Some Lessons is one of the few but consistently high quality songs she has available online..Hushed and intimate,yet powerfully moving and haunting,the timeless sighing melody and sense of stoical grace,acceptance and redemption she finds from such a painful and potentially tragic event can't help but touch you.. I wouldn't be the least bit suprised to find she's a platinum selling artist within a couple of years..Remember the name...... Buy your copy at

Some press

"I live for today; I'll worry about the future when it gets here." That is the practical, yet stoic outlook of a 21-year-old singer-songwriter who nearly lost her life at age 19 when she was hit by an illegally turning jeep while riding her bicycle through Philadelphia. This tenacious young woman has risen through therapy and pain to perform again on regional stages.

Her EP "Some Lessons - The Bedroom Sessions" is in part a chronicle of her struggle to maintain her identity against the backdrop of disability. She has not exploited these circumstances, nor hidden them. It is all rather matter- of-fact. Yet even without the drama of her recovery, she would still have had plenty of interest from media and audiences, for she is truly a dynamic and sincere talent." -David Wannop Montgomery County News


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