The Whole Health Cure

The Whole Health Cure

Experience, embrace, and discover how our simple every day choices affect our biology, mood, energy, creativity, and well-being. Each week host Dr. Sharon Bergquist talks with renowned researchers, physicians, nutritionists and wellness experts exploring the science behind true health and living to your fullest physical, emotional, and spiritual potential.

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    "Fertility and Diet" with Audrey Gaskins, PhD

    Audrey Gaskins is an Assistant Professor in the Department of Epidemiology at the Rollins School of Public Health at Emory University. Dr. Gaskins earned her doctoral degree in nutrition and epidemiology from the Harvard School of Public Health in 2014. This training was preceded by a two-year fellowship in the Department of Epidemiology at the Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development and a Bachelor’s of Science degree in engineering from Duke University in 2008.

    Dr. Gaskins’s research is aimed at elucidating how environmental, dietary, and lifestyle factors experienced throughout the life course influence a couple’s ability to conceive and maintain a healthy pregnancy to term. Over the past decade, she has published over 100 articles on how diet and lifestyle factors affect semen quality, menstrual cycle function, time to pregnancy, miscarriage, and outcomes of assisted reproduction using a variety of population based studies. Her research has been cited over 1,500 times and resulted in numerous awards including multiple NIEHS Top 10 Extramural Science Papers of the Year and the Best New Researcher Award from the International Society of Environmental Epidemiology. In April 2017, Dr. Gaskins received a prestigious 5-year career development award from the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences to further her research on how exposure to environmental chemicals such as air pollution interact with dietary factors to influence a couple’s fertility.

    In addition to her research endeavors, Dr. Gaskins teaches courses ranging from research methods to nutrition and health and devotes a significant amount of time to mentoring students and fellows at Emory and Emory-affiliated hospitals. She is the current chair of the Nutrition Special Interest Group of the American Society for Reproductive Medicine and on the editorial board for Fertility & Sterility, one of the leading academic journals of reproductive medicine.

    What does the research say about the recent rise in infertility? What are the dietary and environmental factors contributing to fertility and healthy pregnancy? Dr. Gaskins answers these and many other questions in this interview. Tune in to learn more!

    Dr. Gaskins profile:

    Recent papers by Dr. Gaskins:

    Gaskins AJ, Chavarro JE. Diet and fertility: a review. Am J Obstet Gynecol. 2018 Apr;218(4):379-389

    Gaskins AJ, Nassan FL, Chiu YH, Arvizu M, Williams PL, Keller MG, Souter I, Hauser R, Chavarro JE; EARTH Study Team. Dietary patterns and outcomes of assisted reproduction. Am J Obstet Gynecol. 2019 Jun;220(6):567

    Twitter: @audreyjane4

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    "Food Pharmacy" with Stacie Renee Schmidt, MD

    Stacie Renee Schmidt, MD is a health services researcher and clinical educator at Emory University School of Medicine, working in the urban public hospital setting of Atlanta, GA. Her work focuses on understanding disparities and improving the health and healthcare of patients. For nearly a decade, Dr. Schmidt has worked to identify and address social determinants of health affecting ambulatory patients in the primary care setting, particularly enhancing patient self-efficacy around self-management of disease through the adoption of healthy behaviors and by addressing food insecurity.

    In this conversation, Dr. Schmidt shares her experience addressing food insecurity and diet-related illnesses by embedding a free fruit and vegetable prescription (FVRx) program within Group Classes offered to patients with diet-related illnesses. Her work was implemented in collaboration with community partners including Georgia Wholesome Wave, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and Project Open Hand.

    To learn more about various partners mentioned above, please visit:

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    "Shifting Healthcare Food Service" with Kip Slaughter Hardy, MS, RD, LD

    Kip Slaughter Hardy, MS, RD, LD is a present manager of Food & Nutrition Projects & Performance Improvement at Emory University Hospital.

    With her combined passion for sustainable food systems and her leadership experience in high volume food service in high acuity hospitals, Kip is uniquely positioned to facilitate a shift in healthcare food service to a system that is at once nourishing, delicious, affordable and sustainable.

    Kip is a part of a number f professional organizations, such as Academy of Nutrition & Dietetics, Hunger & Environmental Nutrition Practice Group, Greater Atlanta Dietetic Association, Georgia Organics and Slow Food USA. She has been a part of various publications, presentation and workshops on the topics of food sustainability, healing attributes of food and strategies for introducing healthier menu options.

    In this conversation Kip talks about recent trends in food service in large institutions, such as healthcare systems and higher education, the keys and challenges of shifting health and wellness culture and introducing change, and shares her experience from the recent projects that she has been working on. Finally, Kip lets us in on some of her favorite secrets of food planning and feeding her family, including her kids, and simple steps for those just getting started on their home-cooking journey. Tune in to learn more!

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    "Countering Effects of Burnout through Self-Reflection" with Timothy Harrison, Associate Director for CBCT®, Emory University

    Timothy Harrison is the Associate Director for CBCT® at Emory University's Center for Contemplative Science and Compassion-Based Ethics. While Tim has a master's degree in architecture from Harvard University, he decided in 2014 to dedicate himself full time to teaching and sharing the benefits of CBCT. He oversees the CBCT program, including multiple research initiatives and the rigorous teacher certification process. Tim regularly teaches CBCT nationally and internationally in academic institutions and healthcare settings, and he advises on the tailoring of CBCT for research with populations that have specific circumstances including cancer survivors, veterans with PTSD, HIV+ patients, and Emory medical students. He also enjoys offering CBCT through outreach programs such as in prisons and foster care homes, and to teachers in the Atlanta Public School system.

    In this conversation, Tim talks about ​burnout, the reasons for it, its definition, and three main indicators that someone may be experiencing burnout. Most importantly, he discusses the way to counter it through self-reflection. We get into the science behind CBCT, discuss different kinds of empathy, and examine the latest research around compassion and kindness. Tune in to learn more.

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    "Culinary Medicine" with Rani Polak, MD, Chef, MBA

    Dr. Rani Polak is the founding director of both the Culinary Healthcare Education Fundamentals (CHEF) Coaching program at the Institute of Lifestyle Medicine, Spaulding Rehabilitation Hospital, and the Center of Lifestyle Medicine at Sheba Medical Center, Tel Aviv, Israel; as well as an Assistant Professors, Part Time, at the Department of PM & R, Harvard Medical School. Dr. Polak’s focus, along with clinical care, is on clinical and translational research relating to the Culinary Coaching method which combine culinary training with health coaching principles. Dr. Polak is the PI of the Culinary CoRe (Culinary Coaching Research) group which aimed at expanding the culinary coaching as an effective, scalable telemedicine method to improve nutrition; and a course director of a medical education program at Harvard Medical School that disseminate culinary coaching to hundreds clinician worldwide. Dr. Polak work has been featured in many media outlets including Scientific American, Herald Tribute, US News and World Reports and USA Today.

    In this conversation Dr. Polak explains what is culinary medicine, its key components, and why it is an integral part of empowering patients to live a healthier lifestyle. Dr. Polak also talks about culinary coaching and shares innovative ways to deploy education and build skills. Tune in to learn more!

    To learn more please visit:





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    "Improving Human Performance " with Robert M. Chapman

    Robert Chapman is a wellness program manager for Emory Blomeyer Fitness Center / Health Fitness Corporation. He is also the assistant athletic director for the city of Snellville, GA Park and Recreation department, and a research coordinator for Emory University School of Public Health and American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM).

    Before this, Robert was the lead manager at the DeKalb Medical Wellness Center, in charge of assisting the Wellness Center to become the first certified medical fitness center in the state of Georgia. Working with the city of Snellville park and recreation department Robert had the opportunity to work with all age groups through different mediums of wellness and fitness programing.

    Robert has a bachelors of Science degree in exercise science from Georgia State University, and an MBA with a concentration in Human Resource Management from Louisiana State University. He loves spending time with his wife and 2 year old son. Robert loves to cycle, run, and exercise as often as possible.

    In this episode Robert talks about improve human performance, including the “why” behind fitness, functional fitness and connecting fitness to your purpose, fitness communities and how they differ and how to select the right trainer. Tune in to learn more!

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    "My Life, My Story" with Susan Nathan, MD

    Susan Nathan, MD is a Geriatrician and Hospice and Palliative Medicine physician at VA Boston Healthcare System. She is an Instructor in Medicine at Harvard Medical School and an adjunct Instructor in Medicine at Boston University School of Medicine. She is the site director for the My Life, My Story Project at VA Boston. She is interested in the role of patient story in healthcare as well as education around serious illness communication.

    This is a conversation about "My Life, My Story", a program that was started to help VA health care providers better understand their patients and provide them with insights and information that might not otherwise manifest through single visits. If the Veteran chooses to participate in the program, their story becomes part of their medical record. The effect this program had and continues to have on veterans and healthcare providers is truly remarkable.

    To learn more, please visit:

    Here is a video:

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    "Exploring The Feldenkrais Method" with Sandi Goldring

    Sandi Goldring specializes in helping people who are limited by pain, injury, and disability get back to their active lives. Sandi believes that the no matter what’s going wrong with your physical performance, you can learn how to move better and more comfortably so that you can function optimally.

    In his clinic and online classes, Sandi uses the Feldenkrais Method as a non-medical, integrative approach to helping people bounce back from injury and feel well. Many of his clients have already have tried “everything” else, without the success they ultimately find with Feldenkrais.

    After working as a massage therapist in a physical therapy clinic, Sandi went on to earn a Master’s degree in physical therapy from the University of Alabama at Birmingham. While in PT school, he discovered the full healing potential of Feldenkrais, first by getting help with his own injury, and subsequently observing a stroke patient’s astonishing improvement. By the time he graduated, he had already been accepted in a four-year professional Feldenkrais training.

    Over the past twenty-five years, Sandi has worked across all age groups with many different conditions that interfere with living fully. He is devoted not only to showing people how to recover from disability and injury, but also how to prevent the same problems from recurring. In 2005, he founded Advanced Movement Training, located in Sandy Springs, GA, where he helps people make rapid, lasting change and achieve their full potential.

    In this conversation Sandi explains the history and science of Feldenkrais method, shares transformational stories from his clients and even leads a short demo to give listeners a sense of what it possible!

    To learn more please visit:

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    "Reversing MS with Plant-Based Diet" with Sarah Stancic, MD

    Dr. Stancic is a board certified physician and the founder of Stancic Health and Wellness, LLC where she practices Lifestyle Medicine.

    She received her M.D. degree from New Jersey Medical School in 1993. Dr. Stancic completed an Internal Medicine residency and served an additional year as Chief Medical resident at University Hospital in Newark, NJ. In response to witnessing the height of the catastrophic HIV epidemic while in medical school in Newark, she became very interested in the field of Infectious Diseases. She wanted to be part of the solution to the AIDS health care crisis, and went on to complete a fellowship in Infectious Diseases.

    In 1995, as a third year medical resident, Dr. Stancic was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis. This unforeseen health challenge changed the course of her life, both professionally and personally.

    In this interview Dr. Stancic shares her remarkable story of overcoming MS and running a marathon, despite the predictions of the doctors and against their best advice. She did it with plant-based diet. This change and the recovery that followed has laid the foundation for the work that Dr. Stancic does today.

    To learn more please visit:

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    "Philosophy of Public Health and Mentorship" with William H. Foege, MD, MPH (Part 2 of 2)

    This is the second and last part of our episode with Dr. William H. Foege, where Dr. Foege continues the conversation about the philosophy of public health and shares his views about the role and the importance of mentorship.

    William H. Foege, MD, MPH is the Emeritus Presidential Distinguished Professor of International Health at Rollins School of Public Health, Emory University and the Gates Fellow at The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. He is an epidemiologist who worked in the successful campaign to eradicate smallpox in the 1970s. Dr. Foege became Chief of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Smallpox Eradication Program, and was appointed director of CDC in 1977.

    In 1984, Foege and several colleagues formed the Task Force for Child Survival and Development, a working group for the World Health Organization, UNICEF, The World Bank, the United Nations Development Program, and the Rockefeller Foundation. Its success in accelerating childhood immunization led to an expansion of its mandate in 1991 to include other issues that diminish the quality of life for children.

    Dr. Foege joined The Carter Center in 1986 as its Executive Director, Fellow for Health Policy and Executive Director of Global 2000. In 1992, he resigned as Executive Director of The Carter Center, but continued in his role as a Fellow and as Executive Director of the Task Force for Child Survival and Development. In 1997, he joined the faculty of Emory University, where he is Presidential Distinguished Professor of International Health at the Rollins School of Public Health. In 1999, Dr. Foege became a Senior Medical Advisor for the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation. In 1999, Dr. Foege resigned as Executive Director of the Task Force for Child Survival and Development, and in 2001, he retired from both Emory University and the Gates Foundation. However, he remains active in both organizations as Emeritus Presidential Distinguished Professor of International Health and as a Gates Fellow.

    Dr. Foege has championed many issues, but child survival and development, injury prevention, population, preventive medicine, and public health leadership are of special interest, particularly in the developing world. He is a strong proponent of disease eradication and control, and has taken an active role in the eradication of guinea worm, polio and measles, and the elimination of river blindness. By writing and lecturing extensively, Dr. Foege has succeeded in broadening public awareness of these issues and bringing them to the forefront of domestic and international health policies.

    Dr. Foege is the recipient of many awards, holds honorary degrees from numerous institutions, and was named a Fellow of the London School of Tropical Medicine and Hygiene in 1997. He is the author of more than 125 professional publications. He attended Pacific Lutheran University, received his medical degree from the University of Washington, and his Master of Public Health from Harvard University.

    In this conversation Dr. Foege shares his philosophy of public health today based on decades of his rich, diverse and all-encompassing experience. He talks about challenges, domestically and internationally, of structure, reimbursement and ethics of public health, as well as his personal experience working in many internationally renowned public health organizations he was and is a part of.

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