Books for Health on the Co-op Shelf

Whether you want to know more about nutrition, cooking, food additives, detox systems, or other health and healing issues, the bookshelf at the Natural Foods Co-op is an excellent place to start learning. “Our little bookshelf makes everyone feel good,” smiles Teresa Garcia who orders the books that populate these busy shelves.

an array of choices on this well-lit bookshelf

A customer may have just learned about gluten intolerance and wants to know more about the issue; a visit to the Co-op and a chat with the well-educated staff are good first steps toward greater health knowledge. A photocopy of a few pages, the recommendation of several tried-and-true titles, and solid information by those in the know give the power of knowledge to customers who visit the Natural Foods Co-op to discover methods and products for living and eating healthy.

Knowledge is Power for Living Healthy

Although the books sit quietly on the shelf when you’re shopping and paying for your purchases, a time lapse of the Co-op bookshelf would demonstrate the sheer volume of books that move through this space. “The books sell really well,” confirms Teresa, who keeps the shelves stocked with books responding to the latest health issues as well as foundational texts for whole food philosophy. Books focused on food as medicine provide a foundation for this collection: Prescription for Nutritional Healing by Phyllis A. Balch, Nutrition Almanac by Lavon J. Dunne, Nourishing Traditions by Sally Fallon, and Healing with Whole Foods by Paul Pitchford are classic titles that retain their popularity for new generations of readers wanting to eat for health. Books for kids teach important skills like getting into recycling and learning to share. There’s a book for everyone.

Categories at the Natural Foods Co-op Bookshelf

CookbooksDietNutrition Healing
HerbsMetaphysicsWomen’s Health
Specific IllnessChildren’s Health Alternative Health and Healing

Tia Hanson-Franklin and Teresa Garcia

The Co-op’s bookshelf remains a busy place these days because consumers who have started to read more labels on their foods also cultivate an awareness of how foods make them feel, both physically and emotionally. A Consumer’s Dictionary of Food Additives by Ruth Winter (a standard on both the Co-op bookshelf and their “in-house library” shelf) provides scads of information about how industrial food additives interact with the body. People consult these books and others to help fine tune their diet and lifestyle as they strive to make better choices for healthy living in a landscape full of food challenges.

books considering food as medicine

When Co-op customers learn more about whole nutrition, they often discover how incomplete their diet has become through consuming less nutritionally-dense foods. Pollution and toxins also negatively affect our bodies and depress our natural immunities. Supplements for a more nutritionally complete diet can help a body cope with stresses as well as promote detoxification of the system. Tia Hanson-Franklin, the buyer for the supplements department at the Co-op, sounded like she was describing me when she explained how “Lots of people think they don’t need supplements if they have a good diet.” Taking advantage of her nutrition background, I’ll be talking with Tia and other Co-op staff as we learn more about how to get our diet into better balance for more energy in the months ahead.

Soothing Emotions with Flowers

Bach Flower Essences

In addition to the wall of supplements and natural remedies the Co-op offers, they also have a Bach Flower Essences display. I must confess to being a bit of a skeptic with the value of aromatherapy and other such difficult-to-quantify therapies but found Tia’s description of the Bach line definitely interesting. Associated with discrete emotions, these flower essences can positively mediate certain emotional stresses. Children and pets apparently respond really well to the Bach products because they don’t have predispositions to out-think the process.

she’s sweet but he’s insane

By opening my skeptical mind to paths toward health beyond the standard Western medical approach, I might have just discovered a solution to a challenge with my friend Margaret’s adorable, insane dog Frankie (named for FDR, naturally). The Bach Rescue Remedy product promotes all-natural stress relief for pets. “He looks like a teddy bear but he will kill you,” deadpans her husband as he describes the challenges they face when walking their highly strung, incredibly protective and emotionally unbalanced dog.

Before my next visit, I’ll encourage Margaret to consider using the Vervain essence (whereby tense and high strung behavior becomes more docile and relaxed) or maybe Chicory (whereby possessive, territorial behavior becomes more loving and unselfish). Her dog is so cute but such a freak that many gentle hands have been bitten while trying to be friendly. A more placid Frankie would probably result in a more relaxed Margaret. I’m sure if my friend has any questions, she can call the Co-op for answers. They love to share the power of knowledge for everyone to live happier and healthier, including crazed pets.

More about SLO Natural Foods Co-op on Central Coast Foodie

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