Simple. Natural. Healing.: A Common Sense Approach to Total Health Transformation

Simple. Natural. Healing.: A Common Sense Approach to Total Health Transformation


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La Bar started teaching nutritional healing facts to friends and family over three decades ago. Everything snapped into focus the moment her daughter, age twelve, was diagnosed with advanced acute myeloid leukemia with two weeks to live. Instantly, all the research had tremendous purpose, and she put to the test what she had learned about recovering the body to wellness. Her daughter’s recovery changed her life and the lives of everyone La Bar has helped since that time. She has now coached others with terminal diagnoses and disturbing illnesses for decades, and the stories of their recoveries are captured in the pages of SIMPLE. NATURAL. HEALING: Commonsense Approaches to Health Transformation. Readers will learn:

How to support conventional medicine and the body for quicker recoveries

How to reverse cancer, diabetes, and other inflammatory illnesses following clear explanations

Education on the body’s pH balance and the magic of an alkaline food-based diet explanation of enzymes, digestion, and healing the gut

How to lose weight, gain control, and maintain a higher metabolism for life keys to reducing stress and getting sleep

Information about wheat , plus the buzz about gluten and gliadin

Cures with coconut, the healthy triglycerides with ultimate healing properties

Helpful information through charts, recipes, and loads of natural and nutritional healing alternatives

Allow Donna La Bar to navigate the science and explain in easy steps how to leverage the body’s ability to heal and repair itself. The body strives to heal from incident, accident, and illness—it’s part of the design! Find the answers to total healing and recovery in SIMPLE.NATURAL.HEALING.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781614485438
Publisher: Morgan James Publishing
Publication date: 09/20/2016
Edition description: Reprint
Pages: 148
Product dimensions: 5.50(w) x 8.50(h) x (d)

About the Author

When author Donna La Bar shares her thirty years of study into nutritional healing, her eyes light up and her beauty defies her true age. A lifetime resident of the rural Pennsylvania town of Tunkhannock, La Bar is sought after for healing information on cancer, arthritis, weight loss, and more. She believes in the body’s ability to heal, when given the right nutrition, alkaline/acid balance, enzymes, environment, exercise, better sleep, and uniquely target stress reduction. An all-around full-force approach to health and wellness. Her gift? La Bar is a master of translating scientific healing health approaches into layman’s terms. In the book SIMPLE. NATURAL. HEALING: Commonsense Approaches to Health Transformation, she shares how her daughter healed from an adult form of leukemia when she was a child and how others have found healing in alternative methods.

La Bar receives calls for help every week from people who do not know where else to turn. Her gentle nutritional and healing guidance is recognized for its effectiveness, as shown in the stories she shares in SIMPLE. NATURAL. HEALING . She is self-taught in the field of medicinal properties of nutrition. Find out more about her life work at

Read an Excerpt



The new normal of health terrifies me. Acid reflux, hemorrhoids, hiatal hernia, gas, bloating, chronic headaches, rashes, chronic anxiety, insomnia, unexplained and unhealthy weight gain, fluid retention, high cholesterol, high blood pressure ... No one is scared; it's just normal stuff, and the doctors have medicine for all of it. So why am I worried when no one else seems to be?

I'm an American living in a rural community within driving distance of a few major metropolitan areas. I see it in the country; I see it in the city. Our population, for the most part, has become convinced that this is just normal stuff. I've heard it all: "This stuff kills me, but I love it and eat it anyway"; "Saved by the purple pill!"; or "I guess I'm just getting old." And this is from people who are not even fifty! Even worse, I hear some resign themselves to an unhealthy fate: "My kids are heavy like my family"; "My whole family is overweight and has a history of diabetes; it runs in our genes"; or "Heart attacks and strokes run in my family." I could go on, but I'm truly writing this from a place of love and wellness, so I'll get to the point.

All of this is not normal. These are the warning signs of more hardships and illnesses to come. Eventually disease will come, which may have been avoided if the early warning signs had been taken seriously. Instead, the common response is relief that there's a pill out there that provides temporary help, thus giving a false premise that this is just normal stuff — just take the pill.

The following statistics from a 2014 report by the American Diabetes Association are a perfect example of a disease that is commonly treated in the early stages with a pill.

Overall numbers: diabetes and pre-diabetes

Prevalence: In 2012, 29.1 million Americans, or 9.3 percent of the population, had diabetes.

In 2010, the figures were 25.8 million and 8.3 percent.

Prevalence in Seniors: The percentage of Americans age sixty-five and older with diabetes remains high, at 25.9 percent, or 11.8 million seniors (diagnosed and undiagnosed).

New Cases: The incidence of diabetes in 2012 was 1.7 million new diagnoses per year.

Pre-diabetes: In 2012, 86 million Americans age twenty and older had pre-diabetes; this is up from 79 million in 2010.

(Source:, accessed February 18, 2016)

While this data is crazy and so frightening, I don't blame this on the doctors or the population. Doctors want to help people feel better and enjoy a better quality of life. People want to enjoy their life, work, family, and friends. It's that simple. But the world is changing. These statistics have created such a burden on society that change is a must. We can no longer afford such high medical costs, and there are not enough doctors, nurses, programs, and facilities to handle this staggering demand on the health-care system.

It's not the fault of the government workers, employers, doctors, testing labs, or the pharmaceutical industry. It has just come to this. Every individual in those statistics is part of the problem. The change must come from everyone doing his or her part to improve health; this is something we do have control over.

Encouragingly, some individuals are taking the initiative to find solutions for their health issues outside of traditional medicine. This realization and the free access to research any topic via the Internet have allowed a whole new avenue of exploration for individuals who want to take control of and responsibility for their own health and wellness. There is definitely a movement to be more proactive with health, to have a better understanding of what causes illness, and to have knowledge of the alternative lifestyles, programs, treatments, and therapies that are available. Recently I held a one-day, free educational natural-health clinic in our small county with a population of less than thirty thousand, and over one thousand people came out to participate.

I did some quick research to see how many searches there are monthly on the Internet search engine Google for a few topics that plague individuals every day. The results are shocking, but nonetheless, they prove my point: There is a movement in full swing to get more information to resolve common health issues at home. Some of the top concerns are listed below.

Average number of monthly searches

• Diabetes: 1,000,000

• Cancer: 550,000

• Arthritis: 450,000

• Weight Loss: 210,000

• Pain: 201,000

• Sleep: 201,000

• Stress: 368,000

• Anxiety: 450,000

• Constipation: 301,000

• Diarrhea: 550,000

(Source:, accessed February 9, 2016.)

We have been treating the symptom and accepting illness instead of recognizing the symptom's true purpose: the body is warning us that things are not working properly. The warnings mean, "Change what you are doing!" The body is failing because its basic system is not being supported. It cannot run the way it was designed to run without the basic, necessary components. If a combustion engine was filled with water instead of gasoline, it would go nowhere, and it would have diagnostic problems, for sure. The same applies to us. When the body isn't given the right support, it doesn't have any energy; it starts having performance and quality issues, and then it breaks down.

The human body is designed so incredibly, with such an amazing capacity to do things that science cannot duplicate. Just one of the magical things the body does is to repair and heal itself. It's imperative, therefore, to have the right tools, whether trying to lose weight, get over a nagging illness, or support the body while going through a series of medical treatments, surgeries, or therapies. Once these basics of natural health maintenance and recovery are spelled out, made clear, and feel simple to implement, healing comes naturally — the ultimate reward.



Realizing you're still alive after hearing the worst news is a step toward healing. My daughter, Monica, and I lay in each other's arms, frozen in time on her hospital bed, both sobbing with the harsh reality of the news we'd just received. The doctor had politely left us alone to compose ourselves before a child-life social worker came in.

Monica, my only child, had always been a busy girl: a member of the cross country team, a good student, and an entertainer amongst her friends. In the fall of 1998, when she began seventh grade, everything was fine. By the end of September, she was complaining of hip pain. Her cross country coach said Monica should not be in that much pain in the early stages of training because she had been running all summer with the team. The coach thought I should take her to a sports podiatrist to see if she needed orthotics for her shoes. I took her suggestion and made an appointment, which was two weeks out. By the time the appointment came, Monica was sick with flu-like symptoms. She ended up in the emergency room on a weekend in early October with a very high fever. The hospital took blood work and sent it to our family doctor. We were sent home with instructions for rest and fluids.

The following Monday, our doctor, a kind, soft-spoken woman named Dr. Stone, called with the news that the blood work had a high sedimentation rate. The sedimentation-rate (sed rate) blood test measures how quickly red blood cells (erythrocytes) settle in a test tube in one hour. The more red cells that fall to the bottom of the test tube in one hour, the higher the sedimentation rate. She suggested we get Monica to a larger medical facility immediately. She set up an appointment for us with an infectious-disease doctor.

The medical center was three hours from our home. When we arrived, a gentle, older doctor saw us. He told us that he would run a series of tests; he thought it was a virus and told us that a lot of times patients get viruses that are never identified. He also sent us home with instructions for rest and fluids, with a follow-up appointment scheduled for the next month.

Monica was still very sick by the next appointment. She was weak and had lost a lot of weight. The doctor still felt the same: it was a stubborn virus, and we had to wait it out. Three weeks later, in late November, she was admitted to the children's hospital, weaker than ever. We were still looking for an answer, but when it came, we were shocked. We hadn't considered cancer. Acute myeloid leukemia was the diagnosis.

Monica was extremely ill at this point, and the doctor did not waste any time. They gave us the bad news and our choices. There was no protocol for AML in a child at that time; patients with this kind of leukemia were usually in their seventies or eighties.

A children's cancer study was a possibility, and that would randomize her to a protocol, which would follow her case and document everything for research. It was either this chemotherapy protocol or the other choice: no treatment. In their opinion, she had about two weeks to live without treatment.

We chose the cancer study and waited for the child-life social worker to tell us what to expect in the days ahead. The protocol was three large doses of chemotherapy, each with long recovery periods in between, mostly all in-hospital.

I tried to think of something soothing to say to Monica, who was normally a very witty and silly kid. All I could think to say was, "I don't feel like you are going to die, honey. I just don't feel it." Monica said she didn't feel like she would die either and wanted to do everything possible to get well. I remembered the old saying that you eat an elephant one bite at a time. We had to look at cancer like it was an elephant. We didn't want to tackle the elephant; we thought it was impossible. Some days we would be able to eat a lot, other days only a little, and some days we would just rest. Eventually, we would eat the whole elephant.

I promised her and myself in that moment that I would learn everything I could about this disease, that I would stay by her side, and that I would apply everything I knew about healing in order to help her. I would work with the medical staff, ask every question, and leave no stone unturned.

Monica's treatments started the next day. I spoke to her oncologist, a salty, old, sea-captain-looking man with kind eyes and a quick wit, and explained that I believed in nutritional healing and wanted to work the things I knew into our treatment plan. Over the years, my fascination with the body's ability to heal had led me to study all kinds of nutritional healing topics. Eating an alkaline diet while trying to give the body the best chemistry to recover from illness and enjoy optimum health was something that I had read in many different sources. I also was well informed about vitamins, nutrients, and antioxidants and wanted to have the ability to use everything I could to give Monica the best chance for recovery. Her doctor agreed that it wouldn't be a problem introducing the alkaline foods and supplements after the chemotherapy had spent a week in her system.

So that was our edge. I had a built-in cot in Monica's hospital room where I slept, and it had storage drawers underneath. I stored lemons, peppers, cucumbers, and other fresh fruits and vegetables in the drawers, along with vitamin supplements. I began to work on getting Monica's body back to an alkaline state as soon as I was given the green light after each round of chemotherapy. She had such a small window of being able to eat, so I had to be prepared. Her appetite would decline and then she would get mouth sores, a side effect of her chemotherapy, and she would then ride through the rest of her recovery cycle with very little food.

During the times she couldn't eat, we tried everything else: stress-reduction techniques, pressure-point therapy, massage therapy, guided meditations, visualization meditations, Reiki, and anything and everything that was suggested by other families with a cancer patient or by our own friends and family.

The reality of what the body goes through and has the ability to come back from is unimaginable. Monica had fifty-seven blood transfusions and thirty-four platelet transfusions and had incredible allergic reactions, not only to the transfusions but also to most of the drugs she took. She had rashes on top of rashes. The interesting thing for me was her constant blood work. It gave me the opportunity to see her cells on a daily basis in all stages of decline and recovery. This information gave me a tremendous window inside her body to see how what she ate impacted her cell recovery.

This was an immensely difficult period in our lives, but I learned so much about healing, integrating alternative approaches with standard medical care, and the powerful ability of the body to recover. It was nothing short of amazing.

Monica was in the hospital, predominantly inpatient, for over nine months, with many close calls in the intensive care unit as a result of pneumonia and low potassium. Her potassium became so low from her medications that her heart would not beat properly. During those frightening times, we still, when possible, kept up with our own plan of alkalinity and supplements, and she would eventually rally and start recovering again.

Monica finished with the protocol in August of 1999 and was officially in remission. She had been in a wheelchair for so long that she needed some physical therapy to get up to speed in order to start school. Once she returned, she got back to her life, back to her friends and her studies, but we had both changed. A new awareness and keen understanding about the suffering that happens with a cancer diagnosis brought us both to a place of being able to and wanting to reach out to others who were going through what we had experienced.

An interesting sidebar: Monica went back for regular checkups with her oncology team at the medical center for ten years; it was part of our initial agreement to be in the cancer study. At one follow-up appointment, I asked her doctor if they still used the protocol that she was randomized to. He said they didn't use any of the protocols from the study as they had proven to be ineffective. If a child came in now with AML, they went right into bone-marrow transplant. Five years after that conversation, Monica's oncologist contacted her to see if she would continue to be studied as they were going to revisit some parts of her protocol in their quest for better recovery rates.

Funny how the twists and turns of life end up preparing you for more twists and turns of life. In 1976, I had a job as a legal secretary in a local law office, and a new, young attorney, fresh out of law school, came to work there. Her name was Catherine, and she was from the West Chester area of Pennsylvania. She and I became good friends. In long conversations, we shared stories about our pasts and how we were raised. She introduced me to vitamins and nutrients, a topic I had never considered. Back then, I was curious about them and started taking vitamin B for energy and vitamin C for my immune system. I experienced some improvement, so I continued to read about vitamins and nutrition out of personal interest.

A few years after we met, Catherine's father, Allen, at sixty years of age, was diagnosed with stomach cancer. He was a chemical engineer by profession and, therefore, took a scientific and investigative approach to his illness. He learned that his stomach would have to be removed in order for him to have a chance to live, and his doctors prescribed chemotherapy but didn't give him much hope. Allen did not believe in the logic behind chemotherapy, so he refused it. Allen approached his diagnosis like a scientist. He knew he would have to adjust to living without a stomach, which meant eating enzymes with his food for the rest of his life in order to digest it. This traditional meat-and-potatoes guy had to learn how his body worked to digest his food and had to research how to eliminate the chance of ever having cancer again.

As he was learning, I stayed in touch and learned with him. I was so intrigued. I couldn't get enough information. He and I forged a relationship over the years; through visits, phone calls, and e-mail, we bonded over nutrition and nutritional healing. Because he was a chemist, Allen studied his body at the cellular level. His findings were too complicated for me, so I had to sort them out for my own understanding.

Allen would come up with recipes to heal illnesses he never had. One of them was a good recipe for healing arthritis. We weren't interested in making it, just helping people heal, so I went out in search of a product on the market similar to his recipe. I found a similar product through Life Extension and still have friends who swear by it today. We did this with many illnesses, just to help one of his friends or someone I knew suffering with an illness. This went on for decades; we enjoyed such a beautiful friendship and learned so much together.

Allen died in April 2008 at the age of ninety-three. I loved his stories, his reasoning, and his exceptional wisdom about how the body works. My last visit with him in West Chester was in the late summer of 2007, when he wanted me to come to visit him to review the properties of octacosanol and policosanol to see if either had an advantage to give him more energy. After three hours of clicking through files on his computer and exhausting the topic, I told him to just eat some beets with the green tops from his lovely garden and let it go. He laughed and resolved to do just that.

I grew up in rural northern Pennsylvania. Almost everyone lived or worked on a farm. I was raised in a typical 1950s household: my mom was a stay-at-home housewife, and my dad worked hard as a mechanic to feed his family. I was the eldest of four children, and we had a meat-and-starch diet with little fresh or raw fruits and vegetables other than during the garden season. We drank Kool-Aid-type drinks and had ice cream and candy for snacks. I remember my mom being excited about hamburger and tuna helper being introduced to the market. It seemed so slick and easy!

Like many adults in the 1950s and 1960s, my parents also smoked cigarettes. In the long run, this has had a very negative impact on my family's health. My mother died in her sleep at the age of fifty from a heart attack, and my father suffered a heart attack and buildup in his carotid arteries in his early sixties and was treated for years for high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and acid reflux. My siblings have also had similar symptoms and, in addition, have also been diagnosed with pre-diabetes and diabetes.


Excerpted from "Simple. Natural. Healing."
by .
Copyright © 2017 Donna LaBar.
Excerpted by permission of Morgan James Publishing.
All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.
Excerpts are provided by Dial-A-Book Inc. solely for the personal use of visitors to this web site.

Table of Contents

Chapter 1 Turning Health Around,
Chapter 2 Living through a Diagnosis,
Chapter 3 The Big Picture of Health Restoration,
Chapter 4 The Power of Alkalinity,
Chapter 5 The Gift of Enzymes,
Chapter 6 Wheat Awareness,
Chapter 7 Finding Cures with Coconuts,
Chapter 8 Getting Better with Sleep,
Chapter 9 Releasing Those Stressful Thoughts and Feelings,
Chapter 10 Proper Elimination,
Chapter 11 Salts and Hydration,
Chapter 12 Supporting an Ailing Thyroid,
Chapter 13 Maintaining a Healthy Weight,
Chapter 14 Supporting the Body for Cancer Recovery,
Chapter 15 Gaining Control of Blood-Sugar Levels,
Chapter 16 Changing the Vibrational Energy of the Body,
Chapter 17 Overcoming Obstacles,
Chapter 18 Steps in a New Direction,
Three Recipes for Health Transformation,
About the Author,

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