Earth Day Ponderings & Our Materialistic Culture Where Economics is King

In every civilization there are 4 main social institutions:


I have been listening to The Sermon on the Mount by Richard Rohr and it has helped to make sense of things for me as to our current state of affairs. Throughout history typically one institution dominates and the others become subservient, used as tools to feed the dominant one. In the time of Jesus family institutions dominated. Church services were held in the home for example and the focus was on community and breaking bread. The merchant class was the minority and did not hold much power. However today it is clear that the dominant institution is that of economics. War and politics are used for economic gains. Using the red herring of abortion, religion is used to gather votes to deepen corporate pocketbooks. The military industrial complex is for its own economic gains and to protect other corporate economic interests. Yes our Chief of State is the former CEO of Exxon Oil.

What does our Chief of State and President Putin have in common? Their love for oil.

Make no mistake and this is no disrespect of our brave soldiers but the military has been hijacked for corporate interests. Religion is used for fear to justify war. All of our meddling in the Middle East is for our own economic interests yet we are lead to believe that it is for freedom, self determination and to protect innocent children while rejecting these very same child refugees. Church gatherings are no longer in the home but in institutions that primarily have their own economic interests at the forefront and are satisfied to stop at simpleton and short sited born again theology where one can claim one is saved all the while being driven primarily by the ego with truly no deep understanding of their True Self and Christ Consciousness. Where even meditation is frowned upon as dangerous. Does it not merely serve the business of religion to keep their flock dependent and ignorant to their true selves and the charade their church leaders are playing?

Prosperity theology is an example of this where to be rich is valued over being loving & serving children of God.

What would Jesus think about this guy?

Jesus taught to love one another, to pray, contemplate and give alms in secrecy so as not to merely feed the ego and prevent a deeper knowing of ourselves and Christ Consciousness. Now our meaning is tied up in how others see us in our social financial status. Now we are told to be a good citizen we must produce and consume and to be out of work seems to be more despised and judged than to be a criminal. Let us remember that Jesus was a Galilean peasant that taught that the world of love was more important than the law and the world of power. Remember that those who persecute & justify discriminating against the LGBTQ community and other religious faiths are citing verses in the bible, mainly Leviticus, Numbers and Chronicles that were all written by the priestly class who wanted to keep themselves in control by persecuting those that didn’t follow their laws and give payment & subservience to them required to be considered morally and spiritually ‘clean’. It was a racket. Jesus knew this and the New Testament, aside from Paul who was still so locked down by Judaic law, was a radical rejection of any doctrine that stood in the way of compassion. Laws can provide a foundation but I challenge all of us to look at any law or belief and ask: does it prohibit or inhibit love and compassion. Jesus taught that if it did it should be thrown out. Jesus was a threat to the priestly order, the establishment and for that reason was crucified much more than his so called blasphemous declaration that he was the Son of God.

Maybe someday we can practice the teachings of Jesus and love one another more than money and status.

Most Christians never understand this and have fallen into the laws of judgement and control just like the Pharisees did in the time of Jesus to appease their ego and look good in the eyes of others as morally pure. What a shame. What a sham. The teachings of Jesus, so radical that I challenge even the most radical feminist, persons of other faiths or atheist to logically criticize. He simply taught us to love one another. Period. Yet history repeats itself. We still have not learned the good news of the Gospel. That we are ALL, believers and non-believers, children of God. We are all brothers and sisters. And more so than what the bible can offer us, the most clear manifestation of God’s love for us is our very own lives and this planet that we share. Most Christians because of their hypocrisy are discarded rightly so by rational thinkers. Like Ghandhi said, if Christians actually practiced and followed the teachings of Jesus all of India would be Christian. Politically as a populace we would couldn’t be more ignorant. To consume is a religious action. Consumption is actually a virtue in modern times at least in this country. As Christianity dominated the time of the reformation where most of the land in Europe was owned by the church, where in their lust of power many non christians were slaughtered, now we see a similar parallel today with the rise of islamic fundamentalism used for economic gain and power. We are merely fighting the evils of Islamic fundamentalism as we should have fought and fight today the evils of Christian fundamentalism, more this fundamentalist Islamic faction is being used as an excuse to justify meddling, murdering and all out war in the Middle East and other countries where Western and other first world corporations corrupted by greed fight over fossil fuels. The 59 missiles that Drumpf ordered, where the Russians and Syrians were told to leave before the bombs came, when the airstrip was operational only one day after the bombing was a gift to military economic interests, a political distraction and just another excuse to continue to go to war with any country who does not want to play ball with us economically. The Moab bomb dropped in Afghanistan killing unknown innocent people again was a gift, if we build these bombs we need to use them right. And what better testing ground than Afghanistan where other than oil, we fight over mineral interest, the heroin market and trust that the American public will continue to care less for people of other colors and creeds.

And we should ask ourselves in this culture where the bottom line is the almighty dollar. Where financial status matters most. In the land of economic disparity who suffers most? Who starves so that others may feast. How difficult and immense is the pressure on our youth to conform to this culture where economics is king. Where we no longer value the work of our hands, the toiling of the soil, the creation of beauty and peace. How many of our youth have we lost who were not able to feel a part of this culture of economics where outward gains are valued more than inward peace, creativity and joy. It is a unsustainable system. Deep in our core we know this. The child in us knew this and in effort to please suppressed our natural creativity. I wanted to to be an artist or a vetenarian. I chose to be a physician to humans. Partly to be respected and to gain financial independence and be respected in this insane culture of capitalism we embrace. Partly to get to the root of the problem on this earth. To help sick people awaken to their optimal health. If we awaken we can help stop this unsustainable greed machine that is devouring our children, our planet and all sentient beings. There is a price to pay. It is simple biology. When we are not allowed to live our true nature, when money is the ultimate barometer for success it is the biology of the cancer cell.  It takes it toll on children who may go unseen unless they dazzle and impress. Who truly sees each others’ hearts anymore. Our innate value as Children of God. Please listen and see our children and nurture their innate love for humanity, for the earth and all sentient beings. Let go of your need to impress others by how ‘well’ your child does. Just celebrate their God given beauty. Live simply with them. Work toward sacred economic and sustainable models of living that embrace our shared humanity and tread more lightly on this gift of planet earth given to us. ‘Be now here or no where’. Be present so you can truly listen to others. To animals. To this planet and most importantly to your inner being that knows what is needed, that knows your purpose in this life.

So on this Earth Day, let us work to love one another and whether you believe in God or Darwin (note they are not mutually exclusive as rational Catholics and awakened Christians believe in the science of evolution and still believe that God created it all) , commit to self understanding & learned compassion, that we need to protect one another and help save our shared home. Turn off Fox News and any so called news channels, papers or websites that inspires hate & stokes are fears, who call are missiles beautiful and Drumpt presidential when he approves bombings over chocolate cake, who buy in to the alternative facts and party line as justification for more war. Please make the connection, choose the path of kindness and help our planet heal, help feed the hungry and help end unnecessary suffering. Lets learn to live simply again, in a shared sacred local economic model where it is not illegal to live off the grid independent of corporate energy. It is in our DNA to live in harmony with the earth, our native cultures can certainly teach us this. We can be happy with less. With love, joy, laughter, art, whole plant foods that supply all our nutritional needs combining with natural innate exercise we can prevent most disease.

“There is no way to peace. Peace is the way. There is no path toward love except by practicing love. War will always produce more war. Violence can never bring about true peace.”

― Richard Rohr, Jesus’ Plan for a New World: The Sermon on the Mount

I am sorry but you can not really call yourself an environmentalist and continue to eat meat.
Loving means not killing and eating other sentient beings when it is not necessary. And if you live in a first world country it is no longer necessary. We need to evolve and awaken to this understanding.


Gabor Mate here touches so eloquently on how our values and culture of the idealization of individualism and the ignoring of emotional needs has to do with the very nature of our economic system. We value not who people are but what they produce or consume.

Dr. Gabor Maté on the Myth of “Normal” in Psychological Disorders. He explains how mental distress and pathology exists in a continuum and are largely a result of a materialist culture that rigidly “idealize individuality and ignores emotional needs,” prioritizing objects over people and well being.



Crazy…or wise? The traditional wisdom of indigenous cultures often contradicts modern views about a mental health crisis. Is it a ‘calling’ to grow or just a ‘broken brain’? The documentary CRAZYWISE explores what can be learned from people around the world who have turned their psychological crisis into a positive transformative experience. Click here to see the extended trailer.

*Copyright Credit to:

How can we save the world?

What a world, things are feeling really bad. It almost feels like it is too late. So many humans, children dying from wars and starvations, so many species lost. The biologist predict that their will be no edible fish left in our oceans by 2040. Our planet’s fellow earthlings are dying off and the waters are polluted. It is 130 in the AM, I work over 50 hours a week and I can not sleep. It is really hard to block out the realities around this. The greed, fear and disconnect. If not for myself but for my patients I try to stay hopeful and be a source of positivity and love in this crazy world. Every day it seems a battle to figure out how to get the light bulb to go off in a patients mind or how to best help one that has been obviously severely neglected. It is a battle to say present for them and truly listen, to be a role model rather than a hypocrite. One thing that keeps me going is that through my work, others will get control of their health and lives. That they may feel what optimal health feels like for them and reverse chronic diseases through progressive lifestyle changes. Beneath all of this work is my core Hippocratic belief that food should be our best medicine.  For our health and that of our shared ecosystem we need to look at, awaken to and support a transition to whole food plant-based nutrition and live in a way that minimizes unnecessary suffering and violence.

I know of no other way that does not have non-violent vegan principles at its core. I know that vegan is a bad word to some, seen as too extreme and people do not want to be told how to live but compare it to tobacco use. There is now consensus that we should be able to live our lives, eat in a restaurant, fly in a plane without being exposed to second hand smoke as we know it is bad for our health. Knowing now that animal agriculture is the number one single contributor to deforestation, global warming and pollution of our land and life giving water; is responsible for the global pockets of starvation where grain is shipped to feed cattle rather than kept locally to feed humans. We know that 27 million children dying annually due to pollution. Can we agree that anything less than a radical change toward vegan living is simply planetary suicide & moral schizophrenia?  Imagine a world where eating vegetables, fruit, beans, whole grains, seeds & nuts was mainstream and obvious just like brushing your teeth everyday. Why kill another being when it is absolutely not necessary? For most, it is for mere taste & habit. Fat tastes good but in excess kills. You see are brains haven’t evolved at all anatomically in the last 100,000 years and still its main job is to make sure it’s host survives the day, the long cold winters. Starvation kills and in our primal reptilian brain we are rewarded for eating fat (sugar too), rewarded for eating the most calorically dense foods because then who knew when the next meal would come. So what are we awarded with other than taste? A spike of dopamine not unlike cocaine or heroin and we feel good. So the drive is there due to the greatness of the reward. (Yes there for sex too) Survival and getting enough calories was of primary importance then but where are we now? Well at least in the West, we are addicted to animal flesh, dairy and other calorically dense foods. We don’t have to work for it compared to an average Paleolithic era human who would walk or run 10 miles a day looking for food. No today we can drive to a drive-thru and order more calories than a Paleolithic human might get in a week or month. We do no real work for it and we are addicted to that reward. Food has become our greatest addiction and now the number one cause of disease in the US is the Standard American Diet. The SAD really now should be called the DAD, the Deadly American Diet consisting of over 90% of animal flesh, baby cow’s milk, cheese and processed foods with a long shelf life. We are killing ourselves really but kept half alive, a shell of our potential, by pharmaceuticals. Think about how much corporations make off us. It is the American way to be addicted to sugar and fat in toddlerhood. Disease starts in childhood, the beginnings of heart disease have been documented  in infant autopsies. We are a source of revenue for them, through our glutinous food addictions and the resulting chronic disease and a medical system that merely manages this chronic disease. Through our patronage to the mindless, static activity provided to us to either keep us asleep with distraction or incite fear and scarcity dogma through the corporate sponsored sham media & entertainment industry.

If we live simply and value connection, presence, joy and humility. In sacred union as citizens and fellow earthlings tending and in most cases just getting out of the damn way of other species. Live and let live but protect the vulnerable, the voiceless and the least among us. Live strong and reach our optimal potential on whole plant foods. Let’s save this planet. To do this we must awaken to our oneness. Color or creed we are all brothers and sisters. Our corporate ran government and military create the enemies of this country by their violent and deadly acts of force under the guise of some freedom or false flag operation. It is corporate greed and the insatiable military industrial complex that must be harnessed. There needs to be a rule of law protecting the earth and the vulnerable. An ideal greater than the greed for money and lust for power. There is more than enough land and water to feed everyone on this planet if we get back to a biologically appropriate whole food plant-based diet. For our health there is no better diet. For the planet and of course for the animals the same is true. Go vegan and live a life avoiding unnecessary suffering & violence. Practice kindness. If your religious, let your religion at least be built on and around kindness & love. Thou shall not kill and even worse pay another to do it for us. “If the slaughterhouse was made of glass walls we would all be vegan”. Do you know where many of those immigrants, that many want to throw out of the country, do for those that eat the meat of animals? They slaughter them for you. For your tastebuds and addiction so you can stay disconnected or oblivious. However they become depressed and have very high suicide rates. Most can only take the horror for so long and quit. The average lifespan for a latin male immigrant worker in this county is 56 years old. Killing is not easy for most. I would never want my repetitive desires, the food I eat, the clothes I buy, to lead to both human and animal suffering

Let’s end animal agriculture and feed the world. Let nature and genuine human being, just us being present and living reign. Let’s pray for a return to innate sacred economics and that the capitalistic model of growth for the sake of growth, the ideology of a cancer cell, takes its last breadth. When we stop using their oil and paying their interest rates and support clean energy but live in a way that uses least and truly prevent disease and optimize health through whole nutrient dense plant foods. Subsisting on plants we are energetically kinder and open to understand our true self and our connection. We are called to learn to live in balance with the natural world. To be, to feel joy. To be Kind.

Peace & Kindness. May we heal ourselves and our shared home.

Veganism is not about giving anything up or losing anything; it is about gaining the peace within yourself…

Baseball: A Lesson In Letting Go

I don’t recall ever thinking much when I played the game as a young child. I just played and I played well. As I continued to play well through those young years I am sure the ego or my ‘false self’ as John of the Cross described it (St. Paul called it the ‘Old Man’), began to grow in attachment to results, prestige, being in the newspaper for throwing a no-hitter, etc.


(Mr. Cather’s son, Mike Cather, whom I played against above and through all of grade school is the pride of Folsom having made it to the major leagues pitching for the Atlanta Braves)

I am sure I began to think about what others thought of me, how I was respected and regarded. I began to think about my future in the game, would I make the high school team. I remember a big shift in the 8th grade where I started thinking too much, I became nervous, I started to play poorly, throwing strikes in important games started to elude me. After the 8th grade, growing up in the small and lovely town of Folsom, California we moved to Southern California. I went from an 8th grade class of 12 students to a freshman class alone of some 700 at Mater Dei High School in Santa Ana. So overwhelmed and lacking any confidence I didn’t even try out for high school baseball until my sophomore year. I tried out and made the team as a pitcher. Without a live game setting I seemed to impress enough. I was grateful for Mr. Cather who taught me the slider in grade school. I would guess that having that extra pitch got me on the team. The first day of practice the varsity pitching coach approached me and stated, “I got you on the team so don’t screw up” and “the way you are throwing the ball is all wrong”. I don’t recall him ever speaking to me again. In truth I froze from there on and never pitched a live game the entire year as I couldn’t turn my brain off and just pitch, just be in the flow of the game and have fun. I believe I suffered from ‘Steve Sax Syndrome’.

(From Wikipedia: Though never regarded as one of the top fielding second basemen in the league, Steve Sax inexplicably became incapable of making routine throws to first base in 1983, committing 30 errors that season. This is referred to in baseball terminology as “Steve Sax Syndrome”, the fielder’s variant of “Steve Blass disease”, named after the Pirates pitcher who suffered a similar breakdown of basic mechanics. As his accuracy suffered, fans sitting behind the first base dugout began wearing batting helmets as mock protection. (Teammate Pedro Guerrero, an outfielder pressed into service at third base in 1983, once reportedly stated that his first thought whenever he was in the field was “I hope they don’t hit it to me”, while his second thought was “I hope they don’t hit it to Sax.”) by 1989, however, Sax seemed to be completely “cured”, leading the American League in both fielding percentage and double plays)

No longer pitching, I played 3rd base, the ‘hot corner’ where if a play involved a quick reaction i.e. a fast line drive for me to dive for I could routinely make those plays. However, what was dreaded was the routine grounders, slower to arrive to me, that is where all hell broke loose. Time would freeze, I would see 3 balls approaching rather than one, if I managed to actually field it properly I would aim rather than throw to the first baseman (my poor best friend, Greg) and often the ball would go most places other than directly to his glove. It was such an awful, crushing feeling. I dreaded playing home games for fear that the varsity coach, Mr. Ickes, my freshman year algebra teacher with a stern military name calling approach would be watching. I had so much respect for him as I could see his commitment to and knowledge of the game, his attention to detail, yet I could not please him and I feared him more than most. I melted under the pressure. In fact, I am now 44 years old and until recently still had dreams of him, of making errors in front of him on the field. Luckily much less frequent these days do dreams of such failures come. Much less frequent due to finally letting go and accepting failure and moving on. Dying to the false self and rising in transformation closer to my True Self.

To clarify, the ego stage is necessary for development. Richard Rohr writes in Falling Upward: 

The task of the first half of life is to create a proper container for one’s life and answer the first essential questions: “What makes me significant?” How can I support myself?” and “Who will go with me?” The task of the second half of life, is quite simply, to find the actual contents that this container was meant to hold and deliver. As Mary Oliver puts it, ” What is it you plan to do with your one wild and precious life?” In other words, the container is not an end in itself, but exists for the sake of your deeper and fullest life, which you largely do not know about yourself! Far too many people just keep doing repair work on the container itself and never “throw their nets deep” (John 21:6) to bring in the huge catch that awaits them.

So I thank God I failed, it helped make me who I am. It made me more sensitive and empathic to others who are as imperfect as I am, who may not be loved, embraced and seen as their true loving being rather judged by their outward performance and persona (mask). I will always love the game and although I do not play anymore I take that lesson, that dying to the false self a little and apply it to my daily life. To stay present and let go of the past and worries of the future. To let go of concerns about what others may think of me, let go of obsessions of perfectionism in my work now as a physician. To just be, just breathe and smile and thank God for His gifts to me, for His Son, our most true example of dying to the false self and living a life of love and service. Now in my 40’s, I relish the challenge of letting go, to be present and enjoy the simple moments in life, to continue to die to the false self/ego and turn closer to God.  To be guided by love and not by materialism or moralism. To forgive and let go of the past failures. To embrace compassion and non-violence toward all sentient beings. To celebrate failure for having been a necessary step in my own personal transformation to knowing my True Self, who has always and will always be in union with universal consciousness (The Trinity: Father, Son & Holy Spirit, Creator, humanity, all sentient beings and this beautiful planet & universe)

What a gift we all have. Let’s celebrate the gift that was given to us, continue to turn inward in daily contemplative meditation or centering prayer  and be love and joy.  So thank you Mr. Cather and my parents for the means and opportunity to play. Thank you varsity pitching coach, I can not remember your name for at least getting me on the team. (As you may have guessed I didn’t make varsity) Thank you Coach Ickes. Thank you Tom Linnert, my sophomore pitching coach for spending time with me and showing love in your coaching and more importantly helping me on my spiritual path. Thank you to all my mentors and teachers. Thank you to my most recent spiritual teacher, Fr. Richard Rohr. And thank you Steve Sax, Vin Scully, Tommy Lasorda and all the Dodgers, present and past! Go Blue!

Below is my father at Pius X High School in Downey, CA. A 4 year varsity letterman, played for the Detroit Tigers farm system, turned down a scholarship to play for USC in favor of a 4 year full scholarship to the then top engineering school in the country in Michigan. Love you Pops! 


Inspiration for this post & further spiritual support on my journey:

  1. Open Mind, Open Heart by Thomas Keating
  2.  Falling Upward: A Spirituality for the Two Halves of Life & Immortal Diamond by Richard Rohr
  3. The Power of Now by Eckhart Tolle


The Perfect Formula Diet by Janice Stanger, PhD

If I could have just one wish today it would be for all my patients, family, friends & fellow citizens of this world to read Janice Stanger, PhD’s wonderful book the Perfect Formula Diet. Health and healing at its foundation is at all of our fingertips with this simple nutrition approach.

Here is the link to her website:

An excerpt from her book:

The Perfect Formal Diet balances each of these categories of Perfect Foods against each other. By Volume: 

1/4 of your food will be vegetables 

1/4 of your food will be fruits 

1/4 of your food will be legumes (beans and peas) and/or potatoes 

1/4 of your food will be whole grains

To this rotation, add a handful of nuts or a tablespoon or 2 of nut or seed butters 4-6 days a week

In addition, be sure to eat 2 tablespoons a day of fresh ground flaxseeds. (buy them whole and use a coffee grinder to grind fresh daily)

Eat flavorful foods with generous amounts of fresh or dried herbs and spices 

And that is all. That is all you need. As the Beatles sang to the mountain tops, ‘All you need is Love!” For nutrition, all you need is Plants! And believe me she will back it all up in the book with nutrition science fundamentals. You will learn so much about the myths in nutrition that have been perpetuated by the animal and dairy industries. You will feel a sense of liberation intellectually and then physically, & emotionally as your body heals. So beautiful, so simple, so loving & pure.

And as earth day approaches, know that as you eat to heal your body you will also be eating to best heal the planet as animal agriculture is the single greatest cause of environmental destruction.

If you are local in Oregon, please come on Earth Day, April 22nd to Corvallis (details below) to see Janice and William Ripple, PhD speak on these 2 topics. I will be there and hope to see many of my patients, friends, resident physicians & colleagues there too!

Peace and optimal health through whole food plant-based nutrition,

Dr Kyle



We welcome Dr. Janice Stanger, who holds a PhD in Human Development and Aging and is author of The Perfect Formula Diet. And William J. Ripple, PhD, who is a Distinguished Professor of Ecology at Oregon State University in the Department of Forest Ecosystems and Society. He is a widely published researcher and a prominent figure in the field of ecology.

Sponsored by First United Methodist Church Environmental Care Team, 350 Corvallis, Unitarian Climate Justice Committee, Corvallis Sustainability Coalition

The Rule of the Artery is Supreme, for all 60,000 miles in your body

Lets remember that you have about 70,000 miles of blood vessels running through your body. AT Still, MD, DO the founder of my osteopathic profession stated that the rule of the artery is supreme and he was dead right. He also drove his students to always find and fix the cause.  Our leading cause of death is due to atherosclerosis/heart disease. Without blood flow tissues degrade and die. Do you know that in adulthood we lose 0.5 % of blood flow to the brain per year and by age 65 on average we have lost 20% total flow to the brain. Less blood flow, more cell death, increase risk for dementia. The leading cause of chronic low back pain and degenerative disk disease is lack of blood flow (ischemia) due to atherosclerosis.  The research shows that saturated fat, oils, sugar, salt, white flour and dairy products create endothelial (the innermost single cell lining of your arteries) inflammation and destruction. We should eat a diet that minimizes all of these if we want to reverse any accrued damage and given that most of us grew up on a standard american diet we all have have plenty of work to do.
Endothelial damage has been documented in infancy so it is never too soon to be talking about it and preventing it.
Unfortunately ‘healthier’ diets like the paleo diet or the Mediterranean diet have yet to demonstrate atherosclerosis reversal. So the gold standard is the no oil, no sugar, no animal or dairy, minimal or no salt whole food plant based diet. This is the diet that I follow very happily. I look forward to my meals and I love what I eat. I also love knowing that with every meal and am reversing disease and improving blood flow. It only takes 3 weeks on this dietary plan to reset your taste buds to their natural state. Then you will find how much more you can taste the sweetness and savoriness in natural whole foods.
To read more on this, Read the recently published  How Not To Die by Michael Greger, MD. You can go to my website for more resources as well.
Dietary Guidelines to Treat and Prevent Atherosclerosis
1. Choose plant-based foods: vegetables, beans, whole grains, and fruit.
2. Minimize refined grains, added salt, and sweeteners.
3. Include some nuts and seeds; avoid oils.
4. Avoid foods containing saturated and trans fats.
5. Have a reliable source of vitamin B12.

Minimize or avoid the RED ZONES for optimal health and disease prevention and reversal.

Kyle Homertgen, DO
Osteopathic and Lifestyle-Based Family Medicine
Monroe Health Center
Benton County Health Services

My Dream

(Your positive intentions and prayers are appreciated)

I have a dream for 50-100 acres in Oregon with well water and clean river access

It will be a healing sanctuary for humans and animals.

Supporting an intentional community practicing sacred economics

A veganic farm with a vegetable prescription program

Providing nutrient dense whole vegan foods

Residential plant-based nutrition & medically assisted water fasting

Traditional osteopathic and lifestyle focused family medicine

Lifestyle & osteopathic manual medicine medical student and resident training

Yoga & meditation classes

Nutrition & cooking classes

Veganic farming & gardening classes

Fermentation & sprouting classes

1/2 to day long intensive seminars on disease reversal

Weekend wellness retreats & seminars

Therapy time & service work with the animal rescues

Somatic counseling services

And of course all covered by the Oregon Health Plan as they will recognize that this is the best way of truly keeping patients & communities well. The best way to prevent and reverse disease rather than continuing to create permanent patients that require a lifetime of expensive pharmaceutical drugs and surgical interventions. The best way to treat cause rather than merely inefficiently and dangerously  just keep plugging up the leaks by treating symptoms with drugs.

Complications of conventional pharmacologic and surgical medical treatment is the 3rd leading cause of death in the US. #1 is coronary artery disease, #2 cancer. Both 1 & 2 are up to 90 percent preventable if we followed a whole food plant-based diet & regularly exercised.      JAMA: Is US Health Really the Best in the World?    Starfield, MD, MPH

All humans and animals deserve to be happy and free. Eating animals is unnecessary for health for most humans and currently is the main cause of disease in the US. It is also environmentally unsustainable and so I am sorry to say we must live and teach the vegan way, non-judgmentally but without apology. It is the only answer for individual, global and planetary health. We can not continue to define individual health in a bubble as being isolate and separate from the community and the planet. All of our choices effect our communities the animals and our shared environment.

We can save the planet by eliminating animal agriculture.The sanskrit translation for the word war is ‘the desire for more cattle’. If you trace back our history there was a time before animal herding agriculture began when we were gatherers before hunters and we embraced matriarchal systems of government, theology and culture. The planets environmental degradation began with the onset of animal herding agriculture and the consequent embracement of patriarchal, war dominant theology to justify & fit our blood and land lust. And medicine also shifted from the laws of nature and the application of its innate healing forces to the concept of domination, first over animals and other humans and then over disease with the use of poisons and eventual drugs to treat the illness over the use of plants and fasting. (Read the Chalice & The Blade by Riane Eisler and The World Peace Diet by Will Tuttle, PhD for more on that.)

Lets choose to eat whole over processed

Plants over animals

Organic over genetically modified, artificially colored and chemically laden

Water over chemical drinks

Minimize or avoid sugar, salt and oils

Avoid all dairy products and animal flesh.

Move your body daily with yoga and cardiovascular exercise

Meditate & sleep soundly

Lets work for optimal health, happiness, and strength for us all

Lets work to end unnecessary suffering of humans and all earthlings.

Lets work to reverse and prevent disease

May we live awakened, free lives so that we may have the opportunity to live out our true purpose and passions

May we create communities that enable a way of living that does not require working for  corporations that continue to engage in violent, unethical and environmentally unsustainable practices.

May we create sustainable, gift economy communities that prioritize health, family, mental and emotional health over  ego, 3rd party corporate financial gains. Where all people have access to our best medicine, plants.

Choose politicians that are driven to help the people and planet over corporate & special interests.

Invest in companies that are non-violent to animals, humans and the planet.

May all beings be happy & free,

Kyle Homertgen, DO


Some recommended reading:

by Micheal Greger, MD

by Doug Lisle, PhD

by Riane Eisler

by Will Tuttle, PhD

Watch Forks Over Knives & Cowspiracy on Netflix

Vegan Starter Kit  — >

We Are All Connected

Separation is an illusion. We are all connected whether we like it or not. Persistent thoughts of isolation feed dis-ease. We need to learn to ground ourselves and connect again to prevent disease. We can do this through prayer, meditation, exercise and whole food plant-based nutrition.

Nutrition should be as non-violent as possible and in balance with our natural environment. The Standard American Diet (SAD) is violent; towards our own health, towards the planet and of course towards animals. It is nutrient poor, calorie rich and feeds disease. It prevents reconnection to our true selves, to each other and the earth. Animal agriculture more than anything is destroying the natural world.

Take a huge step in the right direction and remove animal flesh and milk from your diet. We are no longer in balance with our ecosystem and the days of the hunter-gather justification need to pass if we are to have any chance to get back into balance with ourselves, our community and our home, planet earth. The earth can simply not handle over 7 billion omnivores. Ask any scientist who understands ecology. And think about what statement is made by choosing animal flesh simply for taste and habit while every day more of the lungs of our planet are destroyed to raise livestock, our rivers polluted with run off from CAFOs, our oceans over fished to death, sentient, loving beings separated from their mothers, and slaughtered in infancy for taste, convenience and habit. We should ask ourselves if we are truly OK living in a way where we have others do our dirty work and slaughter animals for our taste and habit.

There is nothing more personal than a person’s freedom of choice. No one wants to be told who to believe in or worship, who to love or not to love. And yes I know, no one wants to hear yet another vegan telling them what they are eating is wrong. Just another judgmental, righteous vegan, right? This not judgement, we are neighbors sharing this space and we want to end needless suffering. I am sorry but we just need to accept the facts and wake up or we will destroy this planet. We have already lost so much, 1000s of species are extinct because of our collective behavior. It is predicted that by 2040 there will no edible fish left in the sea.

We share this planet and we are all connected. Some of us can not help but feel the pain of others who suffer. Children in the world starving only due to the greed of another or more vile, a corporation. Most our grain feeds cattle, where it could feed so many humans that are starving. Making the choice to stop eating animals is freedom, it brings hope, trust me. And as a physician, who has a bit of knowledge about health, please know that avoiding animals, eating whole foods and exercising can decrease your risk of all chronic diseases including our biggest killers 1) Heart disease 2) Cancer 3) Iatrogenic (medically caused) by 80%. We know that a whole food, low fat, oil free diet reverses heart disease. I am sure every one of us as been affected in some way by heart disease and cancer which have been called the animal’s revenge. You can see it as such metaphysically or purely based on an ecological system attempting to return to balance. If we all thrived on high animal protein and saturated fat certainly our population numbers would be even higher than they are now. And no, it is not just about living longer (but vegans do) but more importantly it is about truly living and feeling good while we live. Having the vitality to enjoy life in all of our years. To laugh, travel and serve others.

In modern times we are living longer due to advances in hygiene, medical care and medications which keep us afloat yet cause a multitude of side effects (see 3rd most common cause of death above), but we need to find a way to live here in a sustainable way that begets a higher quality of life. Shifting to a plant-based diet is essential to this effort.

Use food as your best medicine so we an avoid treating prolonged imbalances that eventually create disease with mere medications. We always want to treat the cause. Always ask your doctor what is the cause of the problem and how can I FIX it not just manage it with a medication.

Focus on the core pillars of health. Here is a check list:

Are you eating mostly whole plant-based foods?
Are you moving your body on a regular basis?

Are you breathing deeply? Some can not exercise but we can all breathe so when in doubt, start with the breath.
Are you managing your stress in a way that helps you heal rather than hurting you?
Are you sleeping soundly, amply and feeling rested?
Are you connected? Spiritually, with another, with the earth and our animal friends?
Are you NOT smoking!!!!

Take a step today towards peace and wellness. Relax into your body using your breath and body awareness. Prioritize exercise and move your body even if it is just a few minutes a day. Find simple pleasures. Turn off the television. Give someone a hug. Smile and give thanks. Be peace. ‘Be the change you want to see in the world.’

Eat plants, not animals. Eat whole foods. Minimize processed foods (which include oils). Avoid genetically modified foods. Know where your food comes from. Get to know your farmers, buy local and grow your own if you can. If you take any medications, let your doctor know if you plan on making big changes as adjustments may need to be made (decreasing or stopping, depending on how strict you are with the change) especially if you have high blood pressure or diabetes. For some, it starts with small steps, one more veggie meal at a time. For others, a radical shift works and is critical. Let me know if you have any questions.

May all beings be happy and free.

Kyle Homertgen, DO

Eat More Plants and Support Local Farmers Who Grow Them

I am now on the board for this awesome non-profit,  Ten Rivers Food Web  that works to help small farmers. I partnered with them to start the first ever Vegetable & Fruit Prescription program in Oregon. To begin to change the health of our nation access to healthy foods is essential. 1 in 7 americans are food insecure, 1 in 5 children live under the poverty line and on average americans get 90% of their daily calories from processed foods and factory-farmed animal products. This leaves just 10% for plants and whole grains. This is simply a recipe for chronic disease. Traditionally humans in temporate climates ate 90% of their calories from plants, fruits, nuts and seeds and 0-10% from animal products and no processed foods. Guess what, cancer and heart disease were virtually non-existent back in the day. Cancer and heart disease continue to be very low in traditional cultures that continue to eat this way. In my clinic and with Ten Rivers we are working to increase the good. Shift that 10%. Scientifically, we know that a whole foods plant-based diet along with regular exercise can decrease heart disease and cancer risk up to 90%. Health is not rocket science believe it or not. Just start by eating more plants, even if it is just one serving a day or a week! And please check out us out and help us out if you feel inspired! At the very least, eat more plants grown my your local farmers and watch the magic happen. Have a great Friday!
For more information about what we are doing at Ten Rivers Food Web:
For the science in a nifty, entertaining documentary:
For educational resources on the benefits of a plant-based diet:

Pillars of Health

Increase the good in these 4 aspects of your life to optimize your health.

1. Nutrition: “Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food” — Hippocrates.    Food either helps us to grow and heal or it is toxic. Work towards a whole foods plant-based diet. Start by increasing vegetables, cooked or raw. Fill up your plate more with plants and see how it makes you feel. If you do not tolerate raw yet start with cooked and then slowly increase raw, chewing well. You can use a blender to start getting more raw into your diet with a green smoothie. Try raw kale or spinach with frozen fruit of choice and some fresh ground flaxseeds or chia seeds. Switch from dairy milk to non-dairy. As you slowly increase the ‘essential’ foods you may find your cravings for the ‘fun’ foods decreases. What are the ‘fun’ foods? Processed foods, cheese, animal flesh, ice cream, etc. Joe Cross, the creator of Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead puts it nicely this way: We all like to have fun but we all know that if we spend too much time in the fun part of town it will not be much fun anymore, we may get into a bit of trouble. So we need to spend more time in the essential part of town. We need to eat more of the essential foods: vegetables and fruit.  Very importantly, make sure you are enjoying these essential foods. Find plant-based recipes that you enjoy. Believe it or not they can be fun too! Go to Forks Over Knives website or Happy Herbivore for recipes to get the ball rolling.   And remember to drink plenty of water in between meals. Sips of water throughout the day is better than big gulps.

2. Exercise: Move your body! This will increase the circulation and oxygenation of every cell in your body and help remove waste products though activation of your lymphatic system. Start slow. Walk. Stretch. Try Yoga. Swim. Find what is practical and enjoyable. You don’t need to kill yourself to get results. Forget about the no pain, no gain logic. It is not necessary. When exercising we should be able to carry on a conversation with someone. We should be able to breath through our nose. Remember to do this and you will best prevent injury and burn out. Read Born To Run and learn about proper mechanic barefoot running. That book got a non- runner like myself into running. Now running is my primary exercise and I am training for my first marathon. If you want to try running, check out the Couch to 5 K app for your smart phone. Try to increase to 30 minutes of exercise 4 times a week and maintain that regimen for at least 6 weeks before adding anything more.

3. Stress Management: See my recent post on abdominal breathing. Make breath work your foundation for stress management. Always start with the breath. Return to the breath when in a jam. Observe your breath, then change from a stress chest breath to a soft belly breath. Maintaining observation of your breath for a few minutes will kick start your re-training of the nervous system. You can create new neuro-pathways in your brain by observing the breath, then your sensations in the body. This is also called meditation.  We all should know how to work with the breath as a starting point in stress management, mindfulness training, and learning to live in the present!

4. Sleep: Most of us need to sleep more. Go to bed early and wake up with the sun. Avoid late night TV. Avoid caffeine after lunch time. Exercise in the morning before you start your day so the evening can be a peaceful warm and cozy time. Read at night. If your muscles are achy and tense, make sure to stretch before bed. Practice some breath awareness and soft belly breathing. You can try magnesium citrate before bed to help relax the muscles if needed.

So take a personal invitatory of how much you are doing in these 4 areas of your life. If you are not feeling optimally well, then chances are one or more of these areas are not getting adequate nourishment. Start small and increase the right kind of medicine into these areas and watch the magic happen.

–Dr. Kyle

Whole Foods Plant-Based Lifestyle Plan to Prevent and Reverse Chronic Disease

Eat food, not too much and mostly plants” – Michael Pollan

  1. Watch Forks Over Knives, available on Netflix or on Amazon for 3.99 to rent or purchase on iTunes for 9.99 or check out at your local library, or buy DVD at
  2. Ask yourself before you put something into your body: Is this a whole food or refined?  Know the difference.
  3. Work to increase vegetables, legumes (beans, lentils & peas, non-GMO soy), fruit and whole grains.
  4. Non-gluten whole grains: brown rice, quinoa, millet, amaranth are recommended.
  5. Buy in bulk: legumes, whole grains. Buy local. Direct from farmers (look for CSA options). Stick to the periphery in the market. As for organics, be mindful of the ‘Dirty Dozen’
  6. Start the morning with oatmeal and berries using almond milk or try a green smoothie. My favorite is raw kale with frozen berries and chia seeds.
  7. Add raw seeds to your diet:  Chia, flax (fresh ground), sunflower, pumpkin, etc for essential fatty acid support.
  8. Have up to one handful of raw nuts daily.
  9. Cook staple foods (legumes & whole grains) in larger batches so you can reheat for future meals.
  10. You can have some egg-free pasta:  rice pasta (no wheat) or whole wheat but don’t overdo it.
  11. If you are craving something sweet try to go for whole fruit or 1 small square of dark dairy free chocolate
  12. Avoid all white flour products, refined sugar and processed foods (AKA “food-like” products or junk)
  13. Get the junk out of the house! Or at least don’t buy it again so there are no easy temptations lying around.
  14. Avoid or minimize all dairy and animal products especially if from factory farms.
  15. Drink plenty of water in between meals. Wean off sodas, diet or regular.
  16. Start every morning with a glass of water,  add fresh lemon and cayenne if you like to help with cleansing
  17. Move your body daily: Pick what you enjoy most or try something new: walking, yoga, cycling, swimming, tai chi, barefoot style running.
  18. Practice breath awareness and meditation, this will help with your cravings and stress management
  19. Sleep 8-10 hours a day, this is when the body heals.  Trouble sleeping?  Then avoid caffeine after lunch, avoid late night TV, do not over eat and try to eat dinner at least 2-3 hours before bedtime
  20. Take Vitamin D3 in the winter months, 2000 IU daily with food to strengthen immune system and prevent the winter blues (seasonal affective disorder)
  21. Take a Vitamin B12 supplement or eat more organic vegetables without washing them too well. or B Complex daily (without standard synthetic folic acid)
  22. Eat 3-4 servings of seaweed weekly for adequate iodine which is needed for thyroid function. My favorite is Dulse, or try Nori sheets used for sushi. Or can take 1 kelp tablet daily
  23. The leading causes of death in this country are heart disease and cancer, both of which are for the most part, preventable if you follow a whole foods plant-based diet.  And now we know that heart disease can be reversible on a strict low fat completely plant-based diet (vegan)           (Read Prevent and Reverse Heart Disease by Caldwell Esselstyn, MD )
  24. H=N/C  (Health = Nutrients/Calories) The Standard American Diet (SAD) is nutrient poor and calorie rich. Increasing the nutrients increases our health. Decreasing the calories increases our health.  Focus on nutrient dense foods that are naturally lower in calories over calorie rich and nutrient poor foods.  (Read Eat to Live by Joel Fuhrman, MD)
  25. Practice eating to 80% fullness. (‘Hara Hachi Bu’) Eat slowly & mindfully. Take a few soft belly breaths before each meal to help you slow down and chew well.  Caloric restriction increases longevity (Read The Blue Zones Dan Buettner)
  26. Be mindful of the P/a ratio = Plant to animal ratio. Increasing plants and decreasing animal products has been shown to increase longevity and prevent chronic disease.
  27. Avoid the Pleasure Trap: We are designed to seek pleasure, avoid pain and be as efficient as possible in this process. What killed humans most often during most of the time on this planet is famine (starvation). Our brains are still designed to survive famine. It does this by rewarding us when we eat more caloric dense foods. (fat, sugar) That is why we feel temporarily pretty good after eating meat and cheese. This is because of increased levels of dopamine in the brain. (Heroin does that too!)   In modern times what kills most humans is EXCESS not starvation. Too much fat and sugar! And we can get a hold of it without any work at all (very efficient), just driving to the market to purchase compared to the day when humans would walk/run on average 10 miles a day gathering and hunting for food.  (Read The Pleasure Trap)
  28. The Gabriel Method: Diets don’t work. Instead of thinking I can’t have this, I can’t have that. Think I can have it but I choose not to. Increase the good in your life! Increase the healthy foods, let them take up more of the plate and the good will eventually win over the bad. You will put your body in a better position to heal itself. Your cravings will decrease. Your taste buds will change and you will enjoy your food more. (Watch Hungry for Change!)
  29. Acid/Alkaline: Processed foods: white flour products, sugar and animal products including dairy are acid forming in the body. Vegetables, beans and fruit are alkaline forming. Too much acid forming foods causes inflammation, and chronic disease.
  30. Don’t worry about protein! As long as you are eating mostly whole foods you will likely meet your protein requirement. If you feel you are not getting enough, increase beans, try tempeh! Add hemp seeds. Your requirement for protein is 0.8 grams/body weight in Kilograms. Do the math.
  31. Remember oils are processed and don’t exist in nature for consumption. It takes 44 olives to make 1 tablespoon of olive oil. 16 ears of corn for 1 tablespoon corn oil and 3 feet of sugar cane for 1 teaspoon of sugar! Keep it whole and unprocessed and your body will respond. Check out for whole plant based recipes and information from Chef AJ.

Other documentaries to watch: Hungry for Change, Food Inc, Fat Sick and Nearly Dead, Forks Over Knives:The Extended Interviews.

Other booksThe China Study by T. Collin Campbell, PhD, Dr. Neal Barnard’s Program for Reversing Diabetes: The Scientifically Proven System for Reversing Diabetes without Drugs, The Pleasure Trap: Mastering the Hidden Force that Undermines Health & Happiness by Douglas J. Lisle, PhD, The End of Diabetes by Joel Fuhrman, MD, Diet for a New America by John Robbins


Getting started:,, search PlantBased-Diet-for-Beginners-How-to-Get-Started                                                                                                                                                    For the science behind plant-based diets in short educational videos: