Note From Carolyn: For those of you who enjoy my writing, I am including a free copy of my book, “60 Seconds to Weight Loss Success” and the companion one-hour audio CD as part of a special offer this week to help you kick off your healthy 2015 click here! This link also includes Meridian Reader Rebecca Dooley’s 150 pound weight loss success story to inspire you now.

As January settles in, my husband and I continue to enjoy the countless benefits of more fully living the “do’s” of the Word of Wisdom through a whole food plant based diet, thanks to Meridian author Jane Birch. Our soups and vegetables are comforting, warm and delicious for cozy January nights, and we can’t help but wonder what our health future will include. What health perils will we completely side-step? Cancer? Stroke? Heart attack? Alzheimer’s? Of course we know full well that people who don’t smoke get lung cancer, etc., and that there are no one-size-fits-all guarantees to anything in mortal life. Nevertheless, it’s a good feeling to go to bed at night knowing that we’re doing our best to create health and joy for our dear mortal bodies, while eating delicious daily meals and looking forward to a healthy future.

While treasuring this rosy picture, I’m sad that I didn’t have this knowledge earlier, as I have recently learned how it helps the nightmare of acne! I am the mother of five children, now grown, who all experienced it to a point where Accutane was ultimately prescribed by experienced dermatologists as a last resort.   Those were devastating times for my children! What a blessing it would have been to have something of such significance to easily implement to address the anxiety, embarrassment and host of distress, both physical and psychological, that acne brings.

As a bit of background, after spending countless amounts of time and money trying everything under the sun, our oldest son (now 33) finally resolved his acne with one 6-month course of Accutane during his senior year of high school. Although we knew about all the risks, we chose it as a last resort. Our second son needed two courses of this expensive, highly-regulated drug during his teen age years. Our third son also did two courses and needed a third, but by then was preparing for a mission. Knowing that the third course would delay his mission and not wanting another six months of the hassles and side effects, we prayed earnestly and were blessed to find a book called “The Acne Cure” by Dr. Terry J. Dubrow which has a protocol of over the counter products to be used in unusual combinations along with a nightly ice pack treatment.

Following the instructions to the letter, it worked as well as the Accutane for him and thanks to this information, he was able to manage his acne throughout his mission in Brazil. Now five years later, it continues to be his daily skin care regime. I highly recommend this program, although it was not as helpful for our two daughters who did not experience the extreme acne until later as college students. (I was not with them when they implemented the program, as I was with our son, and don’t know if they followed it as carefully as he did or for as long before discontinuing it.)  The reviews on Amazon provide more information. For our daughters, the recommendation for Accutane finally came at times that were not suitable with their missions and marriage, so neither of them have used it.

While I wish I’d had that important book many years sooner, what may have been much more helpful for all of us would have been the greater knowledge has come through the Doctrine and Covenants Section 89, Jane’s Birch’s book, “Discovering The Word of Wisdom ” and her continual flow of information through her research and posting on her Facebook groups.

One of her postings led me to a video with two twin girls in their late teens with extreme acne. What a joy it would have been to be able to share this with my own teens and say, “Look at this! And this is how our Heavenly Father wants us to eat, too!”

The article that the twins read to get them started is here.

Interestingly, it contains the documented fact discovered while researching my own osteoporosis: Other countries that live on what they can grow DO NOT have the acne problems (or the osteoporosis) that Americans do with our focus on meat, dairy, refined junk foods, etc.

The free program they used is here and will be in perfect harmony with the Word of Wisdom.

Although our daughters did not use Accutane and neither of them follow whole food plant based diet per se, both have learned that dairy products in even minimal amounts result in breakouts within 24 hours. Both use plant-based almond milk for cereal, etc. No dairy treat is worth the frustration it brings.

While I can no longer choose a diet for my children it feels good to have positive directions to share. And while most people are not inclined to this type of lifestyle, another recent personal posting of Jane’s says it all:

“Today, I learned a dear friend was diagnosed with Parkinson’s Disease. We do not have solid evidence that Parkinson’s can be completely prevented on a whole food, plant-based diet, but the evidence is leaning toward it being very protective. I feel so sad about this situation and even more motivated to get the word out about this diet. I know that so many who feel this diet is too hard, but could change overnight if they were diagnosed with a serious illness and were confident the diet could completely reverse it. Things don’t reverse overnight, but if we start now, how many diseases might be prevented? For me, my health is so worth it!”

Count me in, Jane. Count me in! Especially when there are so many delicious things to eat. Jane’s website has a whole section of recipe sources, and her listing at Amazon includes two of my favorites, The Forks Over Knives Cookbook, and The China Study Cookbook.

Click HERE for Jane’s Website recipe resources

Click HERE for Carolyn and Jane’s Favorite Recipe Books at Amazon:

Carolyn Allen is the Author of 60 Seconds to Weight Loss Success, One Minute Inspirations to Change Your Thinking, Your Weight and Your Life, available at her website. (You can get a free copy this week with Carolyn’s special offer at

She has been providing mental and spiritual approaches for weight loss success both online and in the Washington, DC community since 1999 presenting for Weight Watchers, First Class, Fairfax County Adult Education and other community groups. She and her husband Bob are the parents of five children and grandparents of eight. They live in the Washington D.C. area where she is the Primary chorister and they team-teach Missionary Preparation for the Annandale Stake CES Institute program. 

Click HERE to learn more about them and the herbal detox product they share at Meridian!