Charity Pick: Brown-Bagging Bragging

Published: February 10, 2014

[This article was written by friend and guest contributor Ingrid Kohlstadt MD, MPH.]

At the surface one might think that the surf is up and the sun is out — fresh fruits and vegetables year round, ethnic foods from most world cultures, affordable protein sources and plenty new foods with which to get adventurous.

Yet there is a riptide of food allergies, respiratory and skin conditions related to food and diet-related chronic disease. If you’ve suspected that how food is raised and processed today is connected to the tidal wave of ailments, new science says you are right. 

However, even when you are trying to make the best choices — there’s ultra-pasteurization of dairy, high protein dairy, irradiation of meats and eggs, controversial fish food, insidious artificial sweeteners (I unsuspecting found aspartame in sushi ginger and an over-the-counter medication), corn-starched nuts, interesterified fats (used instead of trans fats but with unknown health effects), and new food borne infections. Shopping becomes even more complicated by foods which charge higher prices because they claim health benefits that don’t amount to anything.

Now, what if I shared 100 tasty good-for-you foods for you or your children’s brown-bag lunch and cost-saving buying tips, are you interested? If so, please help me create the one-of-a-kind answer!

My project is called The PickNIC, which stands for PICK Nutritious Ingredients Cost-effectively. Help develop the Top 100 "Best 4-U" Brown-bag lunch list of simple, tasty, affordable foods that are medically-proven to be healthful at my "Fundable" crowdsourcing page.

Think of the PickNIC as your “tax return.” Many of you have followed my public service career (i.e. your tax dollars at work), and corresponding views of the U.S. food system - physician scientist for food health research at the USDA, federally-funded academic research, State Bioterrorism Commission appointee, Fellow at the nation’s food regulatory agency, health department director investigating food borne illness, and station physician at what some call the world’s longest food supply chain — Antarctica. 

In all these journeys I relate what I’ve learned to clinical medicine. After all, I became a doctor to help people find healthful solutions. That’s why the PickNIC is working-mom-practical, student-budget-affordable and kids-have-to-like-‘em-tasty. 

Plus, your PickNIC support helps keep us in touch. My monthly metabolism newsletter is now easy to access. It is online at and also the Townsend Letter’s print edition. The expanded PickNIC list will be posted on my website at for PickNIC’s supporters, with PickNIC newsletters sent to your email.

Thank you for accepting the PickNIC invitation (and please forward this email to friends).

Yours in health,


P.S. Bee Quest 2014 is here! Applications for the $1,000 grants to equip the next generation of nutrition leaders are open. Grants are available through my NutriBee research at Johns Hopkins.  See on the Bee Quest page.  Feel free to email me at or phone (410) 858-4989 to discuss your BeeQuest project idea.

Jacob Teitelbaum, MD

is one of the world's leading integrative medical authorities on fibromyalgia and chronic fatigue. He is the lead author of eight research studies on their effective treatments, and has published numerous health & wellness books, including the bestseller on fibromyalgia From Fatigued to Fantastic! and The Fatigue and Fibromyalgia Solution. Dr. Teitelbaum is one of the most frequently quoted fibromyalgia experts in the world and appears often as a guest on news and talk shows nationwide including Good Morning America, The Dr. Oz Show, Oprah & Friends, CNN, and Fox News Health.

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