The Monk in a Chef’s Apron.

addiction, calgary treatment centre, family healing, recovery

On the birthday of Dale Rasmussen; we want to remember the man, the message and the essence he brought to us.  Dale was not just a chef; but a treasure hunter. He uncovered both the blessings of this world and transforming, like a simple monk, the dark parts. He was about finding his passion, experiencing love, relationships, recovery, giving back, food, and introspection.  He had a quiet wisdom and when we were present to listen; this beautiful soul in a chef’s apron spoke of right and honest living.  Dale wrote this message for our newsletter back in 2013 – -feels fitting to share it today….

The Body-Mind-Spirit Connection

Without the basic support of good nutrition for health and vitality, the rest of our life has less meaning. We benefit with more physical productivity, mental clarity, emotional contentment, and religious/spiritual well-being. I grew-up eating whole live natural foods, I recall, in my mid-teens the strong silent thought that” all that we are is the result of what we eat”. With the fundamentals in biology it made sense. So, if we need to eat; then at least it better look and taste delicious (that was my attitude).

Embarking upon a career as a chef, tantalizing my taste buds with many exotic ingredients; I developed a strong dislike toward fast food. I thrived on the creativity of the perfectly balanced dish.

As time passed, my friends grew fatter, some developed health concerns and/or problems.  The day came when it was suggested that I should have my cholesterol checked (It was a growing concern in my family). Much relieved I found I had the opposite levels. Being from the same blood, which left the question “what was the difference”?

The closer I looked, more was revealed. It didn’t stop at cholesterol, but the common cold, flu, migraines, arthritis, overweight, etc…

Much like the advancement of alcoholism, in the beginning no problems lots of fun, as time went by, little problems developed; which progressed and grew into bigger and more serious in nature.

Overworked, multiple stresses (multi-tasking), and lack of live giving nutrients, rest, exercise, and sleep tend to deplete our energies, our mental capability, our strength, and/ or ability to defend ourselves, which leaves us more vulnerable to external influences. Emotional and other psychological factors are the basis of immune weakness, which leaves us open to immune related diseases, affecting all our body systems.

With the presence of the standard American diet (SAD), the growth of new world diseases is on the rise. We live in a fast-paced world, from morning to night, we rush from task to task, often forgetting to replenish, regroup, and re-connect. Within this century, the world is a much smaller place than it was; we have instant communication, air travel, exotic food and many other luxuries.

The concept really took hold in 1954 when Swanson’s frozen meals appeared. Swanson was a well-known brand that consumers recognized, and Swanson launched a massive advertising campaign for their product. They also coined the phrase “TV Dinner”, which helped to transform their frozen meals into a cultural icon. The success of this idea has grown in a multitude of directions, where today it is a multi-billion-dollar industry.

The Universal Law of Cause & Effect states that for every EFFECT there is a definite CAUSE, likewise for every CAUSE there is a definite EFFECT. You’re Thoughts, Behaviors and Actions create specific EFFECTS that manifest and create your life as you know it. It is no surprise that a lifetime of eating highly processed foods, all high in refined carbohydrates, animal source protein and fats, and additives along with minimizing life giving nutrients.  Has lead society’s health and vitality on a downward spiral, ending in the rise of Obesity, diabetes, atherosclerosis, cardiac disease, liver disease, nervous system problems from alcohol/drug abuse and many other nutritionally based diseases. Currently 70-75% of all ailments are nutritionally based.

While physical pain and disease are messages from your body that something is wrong and change is necessary, despair is God’s message that something is not right spiritually. We take joy and pride when we mentally and physically force our way through life’s problems. Depression and despair, however, are the rewards for our failures. We get so caught up in our little skirmishes that we often miss the bigger picture

Stress is often a daily condition of life in today’s world, but constant stress has severe consequences; many of which slowly creep up on us and rob years from our lives without us even being aware that it is happening. As an example, when your body is under stress it produces a powerful steroid called cortisol. Cortisol can be extremely beneficial in helping cope with emergency situations, but our bodies were never designed to handle perpetual levels of stress from jobs, highway traffic, and social influences in these circumstances cortisol becomes a tremendous liability. Long-term presence of heightened cortisol levels can cause emotional challenges, weight gain, insomnia, muscle and joint pain, premature aging, and blood sugar metabolism imbalances.

Perhaps the next time, the afternoon blahs, poor concentration, and irritability set in. We need to look a little further than the 2 cups of coffee, a couple of doughnuts and a smoke after breakfast, and the burger and fries for lunch. The choice is mine. Is this the life God made out for humanity?

With Love,

Dale Rasmussen


The Government of Alberta supports Recovery Oriented Systems of Care and Recovery-Oriented Communities of Care which include addiction treatment and post-treatment housing. Their goal is to create lasting Recovery in Alberta for individuals, families, and entire communities promoting the fact that Recovery is Real, Attainable, and Sustainable. All Albertans can experience the positive and healing effects of Recovery Capital. For more information please visit their website

Mission Fit

Ron Jarrett, owner of Mission Fitness is what a committed and helpful community partner is all about. He trains the clients in the house weekly and believes that true strength and progress can only be made from a solid foundation.  That foundation includes alignment, mobility and stability, and must address any muscular imbalances, weaknesses and lack of connection.  Achieving this level means the body is able to progress safely without fear of injury.

for more information about Fresh Start Recovery Centre or any of our programs.

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