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On The Farm with Dr.Yee: Parsley (with recipe)

In 2006, after moving from NYC to Rockland County, I started growing my own food on less than 1/10th of an acre.  In 2 years my husband and I became one of 9 official farms in Rockland County and we called ourselves Hook Mountain Growers.  It has transformed my life, how I approach food as medicine and impacts the way I provide treatment for my patients.

Below is an excerpt about one of my favorite herbs to grow, parsley.

Parsley is a packed powerhouse of health.  Oftentimes it’s added to detox regimens because it is high in chlorophyll and acts as a mild diuretic and laxative.  Its volatile oils contain high amounts of Vitamin K, C, thiamine, riboflavin and carotenes, in addition to the flavonoids and antioxidants apigenin, apiol, and myristicin.  Some of these have anti-carcinogenic and anti-inflammatory properties.  Many cultures use parsley as a digestive aid and in combating garlic breath. Try eating a sprig of parsley the next time you consume a lot of garlic – it neutralizes the odor!

One classic parsley salad is Tabbouleh.  I like the authentic Lebanese version where parsley dominates the salad rather than the Americanized version that has a higher proportion on bulgur or cracked wheat.

And now that I have gorgeous heirloom Boothby Blonde cucumbers and a bounty of tomatoes, this was the perfect recipe of the day.

Lebanese Tabbouleh


1/2 cup bulgur, fine or medium cracked wheat (don’t use the large variety)

Juice of 4 lemons

3 bunches fresh parsley, finely chopped (leaves only)

Handful fresh mint, thinly sliced

3 medium tomatoes, diced

6 green onions, thinly sliced (with green stems)

1/2 cup extra virgin olive oil

Sea salt to taste

Optional addition: though the authentic Lebanese recipe does not call for cucumbers, I couldn’t resist adding them in for another texture and crunch in the salad.  Plus I had an abundance of beautiful heirloom Boothyby Blonde Cucumbers.

  1. Soak bulgur in the juice of 2 lemons until the liquid is absorbed, about 20 minutes.  If you are using medium grade bulgur you may need to soak it in hot water but make sure the final product is DRY.
  2. Combine chopped parsley, slivered mint leaves, scallions and tomatoes with the bulgur.
  3. Add remaining juice of 2 lemons and add olive oil, salt to taste and mix once again.

Eat with romaine or cabbage leaves or just by itself.  Delish!


*Visit Dr.Yee’s website to learn more about her micro-farm and practice of food as medicine.

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End of Summer Skin Savers

Is your skin sending you an SOS this summer?

The season’s heat, humidity, sweat, and environmental stressors can clog pores and contribute to a poor complexion.  But before you run to your esthetician or invest in the latest, greatest miracle cream, Dr. Blum recommends that you start by changing your diet.

Here are two easy ways to get healthy, glowing skin:

1. Cut the Sweets
After eating your favorite sweet summer treat, your blood sugar rises and insulin is released into the body.  The result is inflammation, which can cause redness and breakouts.
Plus, sugar can cause the naturally occurring yeast in your pores to trigger acne and skin inflammation, too.

2. Add Antioxidants
Fight free radical damage with a daily source of antioxidants. Eat or drink a rainbow of richly-colored fruits and vegetables every day.  The darker the pigment the stronger the antioxidant power. Our top picks include berries, cherries, and veggies like peppers, beets, carrots,  and dark greens, which are an excellent source of vitamins and antioxidants that revive tired and stressed skin.

Learn more about how specific foods can help your help concern or goals in Dr.Blum’s Learn at Lunch series starting this fall.  Click here for more information and to sign up!

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The Benefits of a Summer Detox

Fall and spring may be the most talked about time to detox because they are seasons of transition, but the summer months – filled with busy social calendars and beach vacations – is also a beneficial time to cleanse.  Consider a summer detox a way to reboot and reverse the dinners al fresco, crisp rosé, and trips to the ice cream parlor.

Take a Break from the BBQ’s

Summer is a social season.  Practically every weekend is booked by the time July hits with parties, bbq’s, vacations and holidays. We don’t believe in deprivation and advise our patients to indulge occasionally, but in-between events, our bodies need a break from the sugar, alcohol, and carbs, so the liver can detoxify.  Liver function is a key component to reducing inflammation and is essential to our health.

Detox for More Energy

Hot summer days coupled with poor food choices can make the body feel overtired and sluggish.  It may sound counterintuitive, but detoxing can actually increase your energy so you can enjoy those long summer nights.  By removing foods that slow you down like sugars and processed flours, and adding vital nutrients like greens, herbs, and proteins, energy will increase naturally – you may even have a better nights sleep!

Beat the Bloat and Lose Weight

Water retention, slow digestion, and salty, processed foods contribute to public enemy number one in the summer: bloating.  Feed your body with nutritious vegetables, fruits, and herbs during a detox and you’ll naturally see a decrease in water retention and stomach bloat.  Because let’s face it, it’s full on bathing suit season.

Make it Easy on Yourself

A lot of the times fitness routines and diets ramp up in spring only to lose steam come the end of June. Recharge your body and eliminate unhealthy eating patterns with a detox program that is easy to follow and will set you up for success! Mary Gocke, our Director of Nutrition, will walk you through step-by-step what to expect including foods to eliminate, a shopping guide and recipes.  For more information on our program click here.

Looking for something even easier?  Organic Pharmer has foods that are detox approved for grab and go ease to take with you to the beach, pools, and parties!

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In The Kitchen with Amy Bach

In The Kitchen with Amy Bach

BCH: Welcome to BlumKitchen!      Amy's picture

AB:  Thank you!  I am excited to join the Blum Center For Health Kitchen and share my passion and knowledge of healthy cooking with your patients and clients.

BCH:  Tell us about yourself and your background.

AB:  My background in cooking has been very diverse and has helped evolve my craft over the years.  For 5 years I was the Executive Chef at a private college, and then became an hors d’oeuvres chef for one of Westchester’s premiere catering companies.

I then started my own catering business and specialized in weddings and private parties.  I even won an award from Westchester Magazine for best dinner delivery service!

At present, I am Chef Manager at Organic Pharmer and a personal chef specializing in gluten free baking, vegan meals and healthy family dinners. I have three families that I cook for in Westchester.

BCH:  We’ve noticed the food you prepare not only tastes delicious, it always has a beautiful appearance.

AB:  One of my favorite quotes is “you eat with your eyes first”.  Back when I was in art school I would host big dinner parties and invite all my hungry artists friends over to feast. As with art, the presentation and visual factor of food is very important to me.

BCH:  What’s the biggest misconception about cooking without gluten, soy, corn, dairy and egg?

AB:  That the food won’t taste as good or have the right texture!   In the kitchen it’s all about experimenting with alternatives.  I am especially passionate about gluten free baking.  There are many wonderful gluten free flours that give so much flavor and texture; you won’t even miss wheat flour!

BCH:  What are 5 ingredients you can’t live without?


A good olive oil

Salts, especially Pink Himalayan

Dijon mustard

Fresh herbs

Homemade stocks

BCH:  What’s the best part about cooking during the summer months?

I am a passionate organic gardener and grow over 20 varieties of vegetables, fruits and herbs at my home.  Working with homegrown fresh produce out of my garden makes cooking even more special.  Also, I love all of the fabulous produce available at local farmers markets and of course, grilling outside.

BCH:  How can we keep summer BBQ’s healthy?

AB:  Make room on the grill for vegetables!  Lots of summer vegetables like zucchini, peppers, and onions, are so tasty when drizzled with a little olive oil and grilled to perfection.

You can easily avoid heavy mayo filled salads by using healthy grains and beans/legumes.  Any easy summer lunch can be made using left-over grilled vegetables, quinoa, garbanzo beans, and a drizzle of lemon & olive oil with chopped parsley and salt and pepper for quick summer salad!

Join Chef Amy this Summer at Blum Center for Health for a variety of cooking demos.





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Happiness is an Inside Job

happinessisaninsidejobHave you ever searched for happiness in a glass of wine?  Was happiness hiding in the new bag you just purchased? How happy did you feel after binge watching a whole season of House Of Cards on Netflix?

It’s ok, we’ve all been there before and you’re not alone.  Everyone has searched for happiness in some form outside of him or her self- whether conscious of it or not. Though you may enjoy the quick high or entertaining distraction from what you are feeling, this immediate rush and diversion only ends up fueling even more discontent.

For many of us, including Dr. Blum, unhappiness stems from a disconnection with your true self.   To change these default habits, you have to have a better understanding of the most important person in your life…you!

During our Happiness Retreat on June 6th, Susan Blum, MD, MPH and Elizabeth Greig, MSN, FNP, will give you the tools you need to reconnect to the true you.  Our signature one-day retreat is designed to offer an enjoyable learning experience with simple, practical mind-body techniques that you can use everyday.

Come learn new skills, explore your inner world, and move to the music!  Pharrell got it right when he wrote, “happiness is your truth”.  Come discover the happier you!

Click here for more information or to sign up for the retreat