Some Health Tips from our Nutrition Forum!


The Bucks County Foodshed alliance and the Bucks County chapter of Buy Fresh Buy Local collaborated with the Cornerstone Clubs to host an expert panel, "Let Food Be Your Delicious Medicine," on the topic of holistic nutrition this Wednesday, November 5, at the Health and Wellness Center in Warrington.

For those of you who couldn’t make it to our holistic nutrition forum on Wednesday, November 5, we’ve rounded up some of the best tidbits from the night so you can benefit from the powerhouse of knowledge we had available to us! The following are paraphrased panelist responses to questions from the audience:


What is the single best thing you can do to improve your health?

Eat your greens. Sleep. Drink water.

What foods are common trouble-makers?

  • Sugar of the processed variety is addictive and leads to inflammation and other problems.
  • Processed foods. Nutrition Counselor Audrey Fleck shared her tip for identifying whether a food is processed or not: “Does it grow on a tree or from the ground? If not, it’s a processed food. There’s no such thing as a bread or pasta tree.”

How do we cut down on sugar?

It's better to make small changes than cut out all added sugars immediately. Audrey Fleck suggests making small changes: cutting out packaged foods with added sugars, or cutting out sugary drinks. Dr. Julie Lachman suggested adding a couple of spoonfuls of coconut oil to your diet because it activates the same parts of the brain that sugar does, without the spike in blood sugar. Some natural sweeteners that are okay to use in moderation are honey and blackstrap molasses.

How to eat healthy while busy?

Set aside some time to chop all of your produce for the week so you can throw together a meal more quickly. The panelists also suggested cooking a few soups and stews over the weekend to use throughout the week.

Do you suggest paying attention to calories?

All panelists agreed that they choose to focus on adding nutritious whole foods to the diet, rather than calorie counting. They recommended focusing on quality of calories rather than just the amount: 100 calories of French fries is very different from 100 calories of spinach.

Does is matter whether or not food is organic?

Organic is preferred, but whole foods in general are better than processed foods. The panelists recommended choosing organic foods when possible, based on their potentially higher nutrient levels (due to healthier soils) and the fact that it’s a good way to avoid ingesting pesticide residues. Dr. Karina Martino emphasized that sustainable or ecologically sound growing practices are perhaps even more important than just being certified organic. This is where buying local foods comes in! If you know your farmer, you know how your food is grown.


Julie Lachman, ND LLC

Naturopathic doctor
196 W. Ashland St.
Doylestown, PA 18901
P: (267) 895-1733
F: 1-(888)-972-5592

Julie Lachman is a Bucks County native and licensed Naturopath. She graduated from Council Rock, the University of Delaware, and the Southwest College of Naturopathic Medicine. Naturopathic doctors are experts in complex cases, and are trained to use prescription medicines as a last resort, in favor of safer and more effective therapies, such as homeopathy, botanical medicine, and tonight's focus, nutrition.

Kristann Heinz, M.D., R.D

Medical doctor
Stockton Family Practice
56 South Main Street
Stockton, NJ 08559

Kristann Heinz’s passion for medicine began at the early age of six when her father, an Army Surgeon, took her on his hospital rounds.   This commitment and service to others took shape in high school where she worked as a nursing assistant in the Alzheimer’s Unit of a nursing home.  She then completed an undergraduate degree in Nutrition at Simmons College and a community based dietetic internship  Working as a Registered Dietician,  she developed and ran community based Maternal and Child Health Nutrition Prorams in a number of venues, including WIC Programs, HealthCare for the Homeless Programs, and Neighborhood Health Centers.  She subsequently received two Maternal and Child Health Fellowship Awards to research Adolescent Nutrition and the nutritional needs of Children with Development Disabilities.

Dr. Heinz’s experiential recognition of the crucial role nutrition played in health and wellness led her to pursue a degree in medicine, which she completed at University of Pennsylvania Medical School.  She then completed her Family Medicine Residency at Lehigh Valley Health Network.  During residency, she began to study other healing modalities, such as acupuncture, homeopathy, and herbal medicine.   Dr Heinz believes that the basis for wellness and healing rests in a foundation of good nutrition physical movement, and emotional health.  She is committed to understanding the unique health and life challenges of those in her care and draws upon her medical and nutritional knowledge as well as expertise in a variety of healing modalities to address her patients’ health needs.  She is guided by the philosophy that every person is entitled to truly understand the ways in which they can optimize their own health.  Kristann is an MD board Certified in Family Medicine and Integrative-Holistic Medicine, as well as certified in Medical Acupuncture.  She is also a Registered Dietitian and Licensed Nutritionist.

Audrey Fleck, MS, RDN, LDN, CFSP

Healthy Directions Nutrition Therapy and Counseling
VIAA Nutritional Counseling
Doylestown Hospital

Audrey Fleck is a registered and licensed dietitian-nutritionist.  She seeks to help her clients connect to their inner beings while transforming their outer selves. She blends training in functional medicine with her certification as a Food and Spirit Practitioner (CFSP) to create individualized nutrition plans tailored toward the whole self (mind, body, and soul).

Audrey has achieved a Masters of Science in Human Nutrition and Functional Medicine from the University of Western States, completed her dietetic internship (field training) with NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital, and received her undergraduate degree in Nutrition & Dietetics from West Chester University.  Audrey has recently completed work to become a Certified Food and Spirit Practitioner (CFSP) and continues to broaden her knowledge in the field of mind-body nutrition.

Audrey currently works as an Outpatient Nutrition Therapist for Doylestown Hospital.  Audrey provides nutrition counseling to address a variety of medical conditions, some of which include diabetes and insulin resistance, digestive disorders, metabolic syndrome and obesity, cardiovascular disease, food intolerances, and inflammatory and autoimmune related conditions.  Audrey has also developed and managesDoylestown Hospital’s Weigh to Lose Holistic Weight Management and Lifestyle Program.   Audrey has worked with people of all ages in a variety of settings from at-home pediatrics to the elderly in the long-term care setting.  Audrey is also a member of the Dietitians in Integrative and Functional Medicine (DIFM) practice group of theAcademy of Nutrition and Dietetics (AND) where she volunteers as the Social Media Chair.

Irma Jennings

Irma Jennings, CHC
Holistic Bone Coach
Supporting Strong Bones From the Inside Out With Calcium-Rich Foods

Irma Jennings went from the board room on Wall Street to the cutting board in her kitchen after returning to school in 2003. Diagnosed with osteopenia in 2005 catapulted her into a journey of deep transformation into the marrow of her own bones. A graduate from the Institute for Integrative Nutrition with advanced studies in Food as Medicine in Northern California, Costa Rica, India, Thailand and Bali.

As a certified health coach, she advises clients that choosing REAL calcium-rich unprocessed foods is the first step towards good health and strong bones. Irma blogs monthly on Food to her audience of 4,000 readers.  

Karina G. Martino, Ph.D.

Food Scientist and Educator

Dr. Martino is a food scientist with more than 10 years of experience working with the food industry and academia. She got her degrees from Michigan State University, East Lansing, MI. She is a consultant for the food industry, and a “food educator” through her blog and classes. She has a variety of Food Science classes available for the public, through which you can learn about REAL healthy foods, and WHY they are healthy. She lives in Doylestown, PA, with her husband, 2 daughters, and dog, and she LOVES everything related to food, especially GREEN ones! In her free time, she works on her garden and reads, reads, reads, and reads some more….

Thank you again to all of our panelists, to the Health and Wellness Center in Doylestown for hosting us, and for the Cornerstone Clubs for co-hosting this event.




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