I first discovered Christina Pirello on her PBS show “Christina Cooks!” It soon becomes obvious Christina is an authority on natural and whole foods, as well as passionate about her mission to help others change their diets from standard, unhealthy, American fare to whole food, healthy cooking. She came by her mission, and her expertise, in a very personal way. In 1983 she was diagnosed with acute, terminal, leukemia and given just months to live. She changed her lifestyle, adopted a diet of whole unprocessed foods, and beat the odds. After only two months she showed significant improvement and now enjoys vibrant health. Christina’s story is well worth reading. You can find it on her website.
I hardly know where to begin in conveying my admiration for Christina. She has been my food guru for many years now. To me she is sort of the Julia Child for healthy cooking. If you want to change your diet, eat better, and get healthier without sacrificing flavor or fun, you couldn’t find a better Sherpa for your journey than Christina Pirello.
One of her five cookbooks, This Crazy Vegan Life includes a 28 day makeover plan complete with daily menus, recipes, and tips to help you along your way. There is also an exercise section with photos of Christina demonstrating the proper execution of each exercise. If you want to change your relationship with food and get your health back on track this plan can take you through those first difficult 28 days. My copy is a paperback, so this can be really affordable.
Christina earned a Masters Degree in Nutrition at Drexel University where she now holds a faculty position and lectures as a professor of culinary arts. She has also studied and became expert in Traditional Chinese Medicine, Ayurveda, and acupuncture. Besides her Emmy Award winning television series she teaches whole foods cooking classes, lectures, and conducts lifestyle seminars all over the United States.
In 2008, Christina founded a non-profit organization; The Christina Pirello Health Education Initiative. With education as its foundation, the goal if the Initiative is to provide specifically designed programs to schools, the community and the food industry.
Over the years I’ve seen Christina Cooks! go through many incarnations. Currently the show is set in the demonstration classroom of the The Christina Pirello School of Natural Cooking and Integrative Health Studies at The Restaurant School at Walnut Hill College. About the only thing I haven’t seen change over the years is Christina herself. Always warm, grounded, and witty, I feel like I’ve spent time with a good friend. If you want to check it out for yourself consult your local PBS listings. The show is broadcast in over 200 markets.
Besides the above links, you can also find her on the web here.
Christina Cooks on Facebook