Review: The Healthy Cookie: Unbaked

by HEAB on August 21, 2009

A couple of weeks ago, Meghan Telpner asked me if I would be interested in reviewing her new ebook, The Healthy Cookie: Unbaked.  The book chronicles Meghan’s two year journey to health, beginning with a diagnosis of Crohn’s disease and ending with a symptom free life.


Meghan studied nutrition at The Institute of Holistic Nutrition and now works as a certified nutritionist and holistic lifestyle consultant and runs her own wonderful blog, Making Love In The Kitchen. After 4 years of serious digestive issues, Meghan was diagnosed with Crohn’s disease and rather than follow the advice of her western doctors in Canada, Meghan chose a more holistic approach to healing.  The Healthy Cookie: Unbaked is a blog Meghan posted to from the time of her diagnosis up until her graduation from nutrition school, and I was honored when she asked me to read her story, and an amazing story it is.

The book begins with Meghan’s illness and diagnosis, and even though she may have been born with the disease, Meghan comes to the conclusion that her lifestyle was not helping matters any: 

I believe the appearance of the disease was the last attempt of my conscience to tell me I was on the wrong path. I knew it in my heart but when my body became so sick that I physically could not go to work, it became clear. It was only a matter of time, given the high stress course my life was on, that some sort of disease was going to make an appearance…

Meghan’s western doctors offer no advice other than drugs and perhaps surgery to remove the diseased area of Meghan’s colon. Other than that, there is no known cure for Crohn’s disease, and the symptoms can always come back. Ignoring their advice, Meghan instead chooses to fly to California for intensive acupuncture therapy. Eating a whole foods diet, practicing regular yoga and mediation (in a yurt!), and taking Chinese herbal remedies also contribute to her healing.  3 months later, Meghan returns to Canada symptom free to begin her studies towards her nutrition certification. 

It is the changes Meghan makes in her life that bring an end to her Crohn’s disease symptoms rather than any drugs or surgeries. In reclaiming her own health, Meghan learns to take care of her body, filling it with nutritious food, plenty of movement as well as plenty of rest. There are long walks every morning, bicycle rides, and a discovered love of yoga. With all of these changes come quiet and calm.  Disease thrives on stress and all the craziness that we create for ourselves, but if we take care of ourselves completely, taking into account that mind-body connection, almost anything is possible.  Meghan is a prime example of this, and I think she sums it up best in her New Year’s un-resolution following her return to Canada from her treatments in California:

This year, for the first time, I am making absolutely no New Year’s resolutions. I plan only to continue living as I learned to do in California, and that is happily.  I will continue being good to myself.  I will eat when I am hungry. I will rest when I am tired and I will move when my body wants it…I will not feel guilty in the least for doing what my heart desires.  And most of all, I will no fear or worry about the countless unknowns that lie ahead.

I began reading The Healthy Cookie: Unbaked expecting a step-by-step guide to healing Crohn’s disease symptoms, but it is so much more.  Yes, eating a whole foods diet is important, but so is rest and living as stress-free as possible.  Slow down my friends.  Take an early morning walk or a long leisurely bike ride.  Seek out the sunshine and rainbows of life.  They may not always be visible, but we simply have to trust that they are waiting for us behind those grey clouds. Your mind and body will thank you.  Right Meghan? 🙂

I highly recommend The Healthy Cookie: Unbaked to anyone that has been diagnosed with Crohn’s disease and for anyone else hoping to live a life free from disease and illness.  I took so much away from Meghan’s story, but most importantly, I learned that I need to slow down and breathe…2 vital things in life that I often forget to do. 

Click here to visit Meghan’s website, and you can order your own copy of The Healthy Cookie: Unbaked here

Meghan, thank you for sharing your story with us. 




Angharad August 22, 2009 at 10:08 pm

Thanks so much for this. I suffer from Ulcerative Colitis, the “other” type of Inflammatory Bowel Disease. I need to pick this book up – I’ve never heard of anyone self-curing themselves through lifestyle changes!

Annie August 22, 2009 at 9:33 pm

Okay, my comment has nothing to do with this post (although I did like the post and enjoyed her website!)… today.. inspired by your yogalicious self I did yoga.. today I’m questioning my sanity!! HOLY SMOKES! I relearned that I am an inflexible person with a short attention span. there’s something sorta uncomfortable about being a room with 10+ people that are so dog gone quiet… made me want to giggle.. then groan.. WOW

Lainie August 22, 2009 at 9:10 pm

Thank you for the review! I like the sounds of this cookbook and would love to check it out. I’m glad you talked about it because I probably wouldn’t have known about it otherwise; thank you!

Alison August 22, 2009 at 3:31 pm

Wow…that sounds great! She sounds like she’s created an admirably peaceful life.

Adi ( August 22, 2009 at 8:39 am

Really, really inspiring… I think anyone with tummy troubles can find Meghan’s story encouraging.

Cherie August 22, 2009 at 2:08 am

Hi Heather….I”m new to the blog world and just recently subscribed to your blog and love it! I too have been on a long journey of about seven years now, trying to become truly healthy in an alternative medicine and organic way. Then three years ago I was diagnosed with Candida overgrowth & possibly gluten sensitivity. That did explain why even though I had been on a low-carb diet for four years & lost 40lbs, I still was not well. So my point is that it is comforting and so helpful to find a blog like yours and Megan’s. I could relate when Megan talked about her weight. With me, in the beginning people would compliment me & tell me how I was such an inspiration to them. But then after a few years they couldn’t understand why I was still eating the way I was and now because of the Candida type diet (lost another 20lbs), my diet was even more restricted but is so healthy. Anyway…I can’t wait to make Megan’s Breadless Bread (modified with Truvia, of course)with Kerrygold Irish Butter and xylitol honey! Thank you Heather for turning me on to Chia seeds and all your other get tips!! Oh, and I promise from now on my comments will be a lot shorter, LOL!

WholeBodyLove August 21, 2009 at 11:16 pm

What an interesting journey! Our lives paths are so amazing in how the tough times bring us into our true callings.

broccolihut August 21, 2009 at 10:37 pm

I am embarrassed to say that I don’t know much about Crohn’s disease, but this book looks like the perfect education tool. Thanks for letting us know!

gina (fitnessista) August 21, 2009 at 8:16 pm

what an AMAZING story- thank you so much for sharing this with us! it’s incredible how the choices we make have the ability to cure us from whatever our ailments may be, especially when it comes to food and nutrition. i’ll definitely be on the lookout for this book!
hope you have a happy weekend heaby <3

Ashley August 21, 2009 at 7:59 pm

Great review Heather!! I’m glad you were able to take away such a great message from Meghan’s book. I couldn’t put it down either and took so much more from it as well.

Jess August 21, 2009 at 7:55 pm

Sounds like a great story and I really enjoyed the review!!
<3 jess

Marycela August 21, 2009 at 7:36 pm

It sounds really interesting, thanks for the review

Averie (LoveVeggiesAndYoga) August 21, 2009 at 6:52 pm

I have a parallel story, not Chrohn’s but I was diagnosed with 3 other autoimmune diseases: rhuematoid arthritis (RA), Sjogren’s Syndrome, and Raynaud’s Phenomenon when I was 25. Ironically, I was already a certified yoga teacher when I was diagnosed so I already knew the benefits of yoga, meditation, and de-stressing. Then, I looked at my diet. By removing gluten, soy, dairy, and eggs from my diet, and I also have not drank in the past 3.5 yrs (partly due to pregnancy as well as long term nursing my daughter, but also b/c drinking promotes inflammation, something a person like me with inflammatory conditions doesn’t need!), I feel like I have controlled the progression of joint deterioration from my RA. Autoimmune disease I believe after years of research is the horrible aligning of genetic predisposition with environmental factors with lifestyle choices. I too believe in acupuncture, Chinese herbs, eliminating food triggers, yoga, rest, and bliss. I need to check out this book, sounds like we have alot in common!

Samantha August 21, 2009 at 6:42 pm

I know a few afflicted with Chrohn’s as well as CFS/Fibromyalgia and would love to send them this ebook. So wonderfful to hear she’s found a healthy natural way to help her body!

fartygirl August 21, 2009 at 4:54 pm

I checked out her site after hearing about it on yours. What a great blog! Her recipes and cooking videos are creative and helpful. I’ve been looking for simple directions on how to make my own sprouts for weeks and weeks… Meghan shows you how to do it and explains it so clearly. She’s awesome.

Melissa S. August 21, 2009 at 4:29 pm

i should have my dad look into this book…he’s been struggling w/ crohn’s for almost 30 years and it’s been so bad lately the guy has lost almost 20lbs…which is a lot on his already small frame. my poor pappi. thanks for the review!

Meghan (Making Love In The Kitchen) August 21, 2009 at 2:44 pm

Thank you thank you thank you for kind review and generous words. And I love that you fully captured the sunshine and rainbows message.

Thank you heather!

garbanzogirl August 21, 2009 at 2:37 pm

That’s such a good message; we all need to slow down and listen to our bodies, rather than just try to cure our symptoms with chemicals. Taking pills won’t always help the real problem, but being in tune with our bodies and taking care of them can.

livingfreeforever August 21, 2009 at 2:30 pm

Thanks for the review. I really want to read this book! I am on my own healing journey through non-traditional, natural methods and it is neat to see someone else’s story:) My Dr.s just wanted to offer me pills but no real solutions. Then I began seeing a natureopathic Dr. and am really improving!Yay!

hayleycepeda August 21, 2009 at 2:27 pm

I completely believe that our diet affects our health, diseases, etc and I’m with Melissa Nibbles in that there are alternatives to dealing with issues without going on medication. It’s wonderful that Meghan has put together a book so that others dealing with Crohn’s disease can read and learn from her story. This is a great review Heather!

Shelby August 21, 2009 at 2:26 pm

Looks like a very interesting read! I will have to pick up a copy sometime soon!

Maria August 21, 2009 at 2:25 pm

Thanks for the book review, sounds like Meghan is an amazing person! I am a big fan of non-Western (?) medicine as well, and glad to hear that Meghan is doing better without it!

Jenn Eats Nutritiously Now August 21, 2009 at 2:13 pm

That sounds really interesting and very inspirational. Thanks for the review!

Michelle @ Find Your Balance August 21, 2009 at 1:36 pm

What a lovely story. it’s amazing what real food, loving exercise and taking time to smell the roses can do for a person’s health!

Emily August 21, 2009 at 12:58 pm

Thank you for bringing this book to my attention ~ I had downloaded one of meghan’s tutorials before, so will definitely make a point of reading this book.
Have a great weekend!

charlotte August 21, 2009 at 12:34 pm

What a great story! I love people taking charge of their own health. This: “Disease thrives on stress and all the craziness that we create for ourselves” is SO TRUE.

carolinebee August 21, 2009 at 12:33 pm

I love Meghan’s blog!! Great review Heather…That quote from the book just sounds so, peaceful 🙂

justrun August 21, 2009 at 12:27 pm

I need to get this book for my mom. Though she was one of the first people to be diagnosed with Chron’s (seriously, in the U.S. She was in her early 20’s) I often wonder if there’s more she can do to take care of herself.
Thanks for your review!

Beth @ CrossBorderCravings August 21, 2009 at 12:20 pm

This book sounds really good! I don’t have Crohn’s but I am always interested in ways of dealing with any sort of health problem in a way that doesn’t include constant Dr’s visits and drugs. I would love to give this a read!

VeggieGirl August 21, 2009 at 12:14 pm

Loved your thorough review!! I also had the pleasure of reading Meghan’s book, and seriously couldn’t put it down once I began!! Not only can I relate to her because of the Crohn’s Disease, but because of other life components as well (i.e. the dancing, traveling, doctors, fashion, etcetera)

I too recommend that folks check out the book!!

MelissaNibbles August 21, 2009 at 11:49 am

Thank you for this review. Stories such as these fascinate me. I’ll always go to a doctor if I think there’s something wrong with me, but I’m hesitant to go on medications because I think there’s usually a more natural way of healing than taking prescription drugs. Sounds like a great read!

Tiffany S. August 21, 2009 at 11:48 am

Great book review! You must have been a A student.

I love stories of people finding their own solution (especially away from Western medicine). How lucky for her to have found such a wonderful place of healing.

I’m sorta beginning to think that yurts have healing qualities all their own!

brandi August 21, 2009 at 11:43 am

what a great story – it sounds like a really good book.

balancejoyanddelicias August 21, 2009 at 11:26 am

sounds like an interesting book to read! 🙂 thanks for the review!

Erica August 21, 2009 at 11:24 am

WOW Sounds just fabulous. My uncle and a few close friends have Crohn’s, so I know a good deal about how painful this disease can be. Awesome to know that she found alternatives to traditional medicine. When I think about all of the digestive issues I’ve had, I often wonder…is it just stress? My doctor says its a lazy digestive system, but I think slowing down, relaxing, and enjoying life a bit more could do wonders for me. He prescribed me some medication which I have not taken yet, but also told me to seak out alternative treatments like acupuncture, yoga, etc. Thanks for the great review Heather. Hope Colorado is still treating you well.

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