Tag - michelle aslan

Wellness Pop-Up
Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde
Life’s Purpose
Cling To Your Life’s Purpose
Inner Integrity
Energy Distribution
Sourdough workshop at Sprouts, UBC
Sourdough Goodies Workshop at Simon Fraser University
Imagination and Education

Wellness Pop-Up

It was an honor to be invited to speak about healthy eating habits at work at the BMO Wellness Pop-Up

We all know how challenging maintaining wellness can be especially with personal and professional demands placed on us on a day-to-day basis

Bank of Montreal organized a Wellness Pop-Up for all their employees and it was a pleasure to be invited to a speak at the event. At BMO wellbeing is an important aspect of their corporate culture.

Listening to employee stories, seeing how wellness is integrated at BMO was exciting and heartening. Now I realize why BMO is ranked as the number two employer in Canada. Feeling gratitude for being a part of this awesome wellness culture at BMO.

To all those who are challenged with personal and professional stress, I encourage them to go for healthy eating habits, and aspire to spend the majority of their time in an environment that supports their wellbeing.

Incorporate movement in your daily life. Without a vigorous level of physical activity, one cannot maintain a  healthy lifestyle. Even the most cursory examination of the human body will reveal that our species is made for movement, and our biological foods are in sync with that aspect of ourselves.

Last but not least ensure that you get adequate rest. Enough sleep is the foundation that everything else rests upon. Many people who are under-slept become more and more immature and they begin to take foolish risks or become over-reactive to normal experiences.  As long as the amount of rest in one’s life is in balance with the demands being made upon one’s body and mind, the body can recover from remarkable amounts of stress.

The more stressful (both emotionally and physically) one’s life is, the more rest will be required. There is nothing more enjoyable to the body and the psyche than a deep, restful sleep. Ironically, though, sleep is something that many people find impossible to get under control, and are often highly resistant to.

If all the other factors in one’s life are well organized and planned but sleep is given short shrift, eventually, emotional and physical turmoil will be the result. During deep sleep, the brain is reorganizing and recharging every cell in the body, and it is building the connections between neurons that are learning and processing from the day’s experiences. Without adequate rest, everything else is worthless, because the body will become worn down and sick, unable to maintain the process of rejuvenation at a pace fast enough to stay ahead of the physiological processes of daily life.

My suggestion to anyone who wants to experience optimal health is to focus on what you eat, how much you sleep and move your body! Go for health! Focus on it, maintain it and sustain it on a day-to-day basis.


Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde

The very idea that alcohol and wine could possibly be a healthy influence on the body in any way, shape or form, is ludicrous. Alcohol is a poison, and it is a simple, undeniable scientific fact. It has the potential to destroy lives and damage health to an extreme degree, and it does so regularly. It doesn’t matter in the slightest if the alcoholic beverage is made of grapes, peaches, barley, potatoes (vodka), palm fruit, or cactus (tequila), the fact remains that it will seriously and dramatically harm the human body. Alcohol causes immediate and drastic mal absorption of essential vitamins and minerals. Causing direct malfunctioning of the liver, and an overload of fatty deposits.

Alcohol circulates through the body as quickly as water does, because it has the ability to pass through cellular walls and membranes. For this reason, the body has no recourse against it and cannot isolate it or restrict exposure once it has been consumed. It damages every organ and system it comes into contact with. Alcohol abnormally skews brain function, as the brain cannot prevent it from crossing the blood/brain barrier, unlike with most drugs and chemicals.

Unlike alcohol, wine is a beverage that holds a very special place in society and in the mainstream health movement.  No consensus seems to exist as to whether or not it bestows vitality, or destroys it, but a strong movement is underway to paint a picture of wine as a friendly assistant in maintaining health and long life. A devious and misleading tactic that has been heavily utilized to hype up the supposed benefits of wine is to isolate some compound or substance in the beverage that has known cancer or heart-protective properties. For example, wine has been touted as an “anti-cancer” drink because it contains resveratrol, an anti-inflammatory, heart-healthy substance. Conveniently, what is neglected and not mentioned is that one would need to drink a thousand bottles of wine to obtain a dosage sufficient to impact cancer or the heart in any positive way. Well, anyone drinking a thousand bottles of wine to prevent cancer will probably succeed, since they’ll be dead long before cancer has time to develop. The fact that wine is made from grapes and contains traces of grape skin, and grape anti-oxidants, and grape vitamins really has absolutely nothing to do with the issue, and does nothing to make wine a health food anymore than adding lettuce to lard or parsley to paint thinner would make lard or paint thinner a health food or detract from the negative impact that lard or paint thinner has on one’s health.

While it is true that alcohol can temporarily force the blood vessels to widen (due to the toxic and deadly influence of the poison), it seems not to have occurred to the “pro-wine” crowd that part of the reason wine drinkers don’t seem to have heart attacks and strokes as often as non-wine drinkers is because people who drink alcohol tend to die earlier, of other ailments. Alcohol, including wine, has destroyed more lives and families than any other single substance combined. Is it worth drinking even one glass of wine per day to prevent stroke or heart disease, and yet increase ones risk of high-blood pressure, suicide, accident, liver disease, infertility, stomach infection, ulcers, pancreatic infection and inflammation, dementia, esophageal diseases, mouth, breast, throat, and intestinal cancer, and schizophrenia. For the true information seeker, the propaganda gives pause for thought, and isn’t so easily swallowed. Unfortunately, the media blitz promoting wine as a hero in the fight against disease makes it difficult to determine the truth, and is allowing millions to excuse and justify their daily consumption of an unadulterated poison.

Like Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, wine is on the one hand lauded for bestowing amazing benefits on the consumer and touted as possessing the remarkable ability to aid in the prevention of heart attacks and strokes, two of the leading causes of death in western society. Even one glass of wine impairs mental and physical ability. On the other hand there are murmurs of dissent, and quiet misgivings to the effect that perhaps wine contains alcohol and is capable of the same impairment, destruction and damage as any type of alcoholic beverage. These quiet misgivings should be loud and uncompromising.

Common sense should take the lead in helping to determine the truth. The hype about the supposed health benefits of wine is nothing but the last dying gasp of desperation, and the manifestation of a sick society, hoping beyond hope that the precious illusion can be salvaged: that a substance that causes drunkenness, sickness, and death can somehow be justified. The addictive nature of wine and alcohol is directly responsible for the hype, as individuals nearly always seek to justify their addictions by re-imagining them as agents of good.

To give the readers some perspective, based on a standard drinks served in North America below are some facts:

  • Five ounces of wine with 12% alcohol by volume contains 0.6 ounces of alcohol
  • Five ounces of spirits with 40% alcohol by volume contains 0.6 alcohol
  • Twelve ounces of beer with 5% alcohol by volume contains 0.6 ounces of alcohol.

When one has a blood alcohol concentration of .05% one should not be driving and a person is considered criminally negligent when their blood alcohol level is at .08%. Someone imbibing in alcohol regularly whose blood level is about .30% can loose consciousness and .40% alcohol blood level could induce a coma or may cause die.

When viewed in the context of the above information, the very idea that alcohol or wine could possibly be a healthy influence in any way, shape or form, becomes ludicrous. It is clearly a disease promoting, health destroying substance, to be avoided by anyone desiring long life and productivity throughout their years. Common sense should make it clear that any substance that impairs ability in any way, in even the smallest dose, cannot possibly be building health or vitality.


“Moderate Alcohol Intake and Cancer Incidence in Woman”. “Journal of the National Cancer Institute” Retrieved Jan 28th, 2018.

“Alcohol Consumption May Increase Pancreatic Cancer Risk”.  “Medicalnewstoday.com” Retrieved Jan 28th, 2018.

“Can alcohol be good for you?” Cancer Research UK.

Marc; Kleber, Herbert D. (1 July 2008). The American Psychiatric Publishing Textbook of Substance Abuse Treatment (4th ed.). United States of America: American Psychiatric Publishing Inc. p. 114. ISBN 978-1585622764

Driving While Affected by Drugs or Alcohol, Retrieved Jan 28th, 2018 from, https://www2.gov.bc.ca/gov/content/transportation/driving-and-cycling/road-safety-rules-and-consequences/drug-alcohol

Lindsay B., Vancouver Sun, “B.C. expands mandatory Serving It Right liquor-handling program to include — just about everyone”, Retrieved Jan 28th, 2018 from http://www.vancouversun.com/expands+mandatory+serving+right+liquor+handling+program+include+just+about+everyone/10673678/story.html

Serve It Right, Retrieved Jan 28th, 2018 from, https://www.servingitright.com


Life’s Purpose

That which we avoid, stops us from living our life’s purpose. The challenges in our lives are building blocks, that strengthen us to be better, stronger and force us to tap in to our hidden potential in a way that we have never done before. My biggest breakthroughs came about when I stopped avoiding the path I had to take.


Our emotions never lie. They give us an indication of what is truly going on inside. When one does not pay attention to their emotions, the body takes over, and one gets sick and the mind seeks for ways to escape the “what is”. When one truly experiences the “what is”, they will discover their hidden potential. It takes commitment, effort and time to look inwards. One has to plough through millions of years of conditioning. Taking action on a consistent basis, with regular course correction is an absolute must! to achieving one’s life purpose.

Inner Integrity

If one thinks that their assets are what they have in their bank account and the house they own, they have truly devalued themselves. Your inner integrity is the most valuable asset you have. If you can be honest with yourself and take a good look inside, you will see that you can make do with out your assets, but you cannot thrive without inner integrity.

Energy Distribution

Everyday when we wake up in the morning, we go through an energy distribution phase where we make a decision, consciously or unconsciously on what we are going to focus on. Empowering habits lead to a successful life. Whereas, disempowering habits lead us to mediocrity in every aspect of life.

Sourdough workshop at Sprouts, UBC

I am excited that I have been invited to teach a cultured sourdough workshop by Sprouts cafe at University of British Columbia on March 30th.  In this workshop graduate students at UBC  will discover how to make healthy sourdough bread without using any baking soda, baking powder, commercial yeast or corn starch.  Most baked goods that are produced commercially are not health sustaining long term. As they contain too much sugar, butter, and undigestible flour. Sourdough baking is a delicious, sugar and dairy free alternative, that not only tastes good but is easy to digest.

The amazing thing about cultured sourdough baking is that the carbohydrates are pre-digested during the process of culturing and the nutrients are made more bio-available. The lactic acid in sourdough slows down the rate at which glucose is released in the blood stream. And also lowers the cultured baked good’s glycemic index.

Cultured Sourdough Baking Workshop
Sprouts UBC
March 30th, 2017
2:30 pm to 6:30 pm

Sourdough Goodies Workshop at Simon Fraser University

I am very excited to be teaching a “Sourdough Goodies” workshop through the Graduate Students Society, for grad students at Simon Fraser University.

In this workshop students will discover how to use sourdough starter to transform conventional pastries into more nutritious sourdough treats that taste delicious and will make one feel great. Sourdough cookies, pies, cakes and loaves become more bio-available through fermentation.

During the workshop students will sample various sourdough pastries, see a presentation on sourdough goodies and receive a demo on making a sourdough piecrust, cakes and cookies.


Imagination and Education

I have been invited to speak and facilitate a workshop at the 10TH International Conference on Imagination and Education on July 2nd to July 4th, at Simon Fraser University, downtown campus. The workshop I am facilitating is on how to go from Stuck to Unstoppable in Education. In this workshop conference participants will discover how to:

  • build a growth mindset culture in classrooms
  • change student’s thinking about success and performance to manifest positive change
  • collapse disempowering behaviors and habits to improve a student’s productivity and enhance their performance 

Copyright © 2022 Michelle Aslan