Ep. 144: Holistic Nutrition with Dr. Ed Bauman

By: Cassy Joy Garcia
Fed & Fit
Fed & Fit

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On today's episode, I'm chatting with Dr. Ed Bauman of Bauman College, where I went to Nutrition school, about the Holistic Nutrition Career Path, how Bauman curriculum differs, and advice for people considering the program!

Fed and Fit podcast graphic, episode 144 holistic nutrition with dr. ed bauman with Cassy Joy

We're back with our 144th episode of the Fed+Fit Podcast! Remember to check back every Monday for a new episode and be sure to subscribe on iTunes!

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Episode 144 Links

  • Learn more about Bauman College HERE
  • Learn more about Bauman Wellness HERE

Episode 144 Transcription

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Cassy Joy: Welcome back to another episode of the Fed and Fit podcast. I am your host, Cassy Joy Garcia. And today I am thrilled to bring you one of my personal teachers and mentors that has really helped. I went through his schooling program, Bauman College, a couple of years ago. And from there, launched my own holistic nutrition practice.

So I’m going to tell you a little bit about him; Dr. Ed Bauman. The namesake. Dr. Ed Bauman has been a pioneer in the field of holistic nutrition for over 35 years. His vision and leadership have inspired thousands of people to transform their lives. I would argue that’s even more than thousands of people since then. In the form of wellness, community, and peace. He received his M. Ed. From the University of Massachusetts, and a PhD in health promotion from the University Of New Mexico. Dr. Bauman created the eating for health model to teach individuals to make nutritionally comprehensive food choices.

He founded Bauman College in 1989 with a mission to change the world through better nutrition and healthful living. He is a special advisor for the National Association of Nutritional Professionals, and brings a wealth of knowledge, wisdom, and love of good health and good taste to his work. Welcome to the show, Dr. Bauman!

Dr. Ed Bauman: Oh, I’m so happy to be here with you and all of our listeners.

Cassy Joy: Yes! Absolutely. I just can’t wait for them to hear from you. So that was just a very brief introduction. And I know that all of your professional accomplishments, especially more recent ones, far exceed what I read. If you don’t mind, tell us a little bit more about yourself, and about Bauman College.

Dr. Ed Bauman: Ok. Well, I got started on this path when I was 23 years old. And now I’m 71. So if you do the math, that’s quite a long time. I’ve always been interested in health, and food, and community. And really, forward progressive thought and action. So I was a child of the 50s and 60s, and saw that the culture was really off track. And it really didn’t represent innate natural health values, or spirituality.

I’m a good student, and teacher, and I love my work. I was fortunate to buy an organic farm with my friends. It was a commune in 1970. So a pretty young age. So I learned about nutrition from the ground up. I cooked on a wood stove, and I grew food, and did fermentation, and drying, and pickling, and all that good stuff way back as a youngster.

Looking at academia, I didn’t find nutritional teachings were valid at all. I found they were very commercial. They were very biased. They did not have fresh, whole foods. So way back there in the 70s, I started a natural food restaurant. I started many, many things, and I’ve done virtually everything collectively, collaboratively. I really feel like that’s the model for our times, is working together.

I started Bauman College, by coming to California after my doctorate, and being somewhat disillusioned by PhD school and the very rigid, narrow thought. I’ve always been broader and deeper than some of the colleagues I’ve worked with. So I decided to create a program. And the program then became a school.

The other thing to appreciate, is the nutrition program at Bauman College, I guess it’s 28 years old, and it’s still alive and evolving. And I think that’s really key. And also the culinary program, we teach people how to cook. And our nutrition program, we have snacks and recipes, and talk about food a lot. And our culinary program where we train chefs, we talk about nutrition and the nutritional value and the therapeutic aspects of cooking for people with special needs. People who have issue with gluten, or dairy, or soy, or corn, or seeds, or nuts, or all those things.

Because really, the prime motivator for me was that because the environment has been destroyed, and damaged, and polluted, the food and the water and the air have been compromised. And the holistic, natural approach is really the antidote. So I’m grateful that we have an institution of learning that has that premise. It’s not really product-based; it’s processed based. It’s not based on a single dietary philosophy. We’re into raw, we’re into cooked, we’re into keto, or paleo. These are interesting, and they’re part of a spectrum. But as you well know, the approach I’ve taken, and the school takes, is nondogmatic. And people need to learn how to try things, empirical, based on whole food principle, and over time learn what eating for health means to them.

Cassy Joy: I love that.

Dr. Ed Bauman: So that’s sort of a preamble there.

Cassy Joy: That’s wonderful, Dr. Bauman. And just to give folks some background who are listening, I went through the nutritional consultant program via distance learning. So it’s a slightly longer program. The reason why I chose Bauman College is exactly what you just spoke to; is your non-dogmatic, real foods, whole foods approach. Because even though I do have a personal bias, right, towards excluding certain foods on my personal plate. As somebody who is working with clients and working one on one with folks, I also understand there is no one size-fits-all. And I wanted an education that spanned all of those different options. And that’s exactly what I got at Bauman. So that’s really wonderful.

Dr. Ed Bauman: Let me ask you a question?

Cassy Joy: Yeah.

Dr. Ed Bauman: How much work did you do? How hard was that program? How much nutritional muscle did you build by studying the Bauman program for a couple of years?

Cassy Joy: I would say that it was a significant undertaking it if you look at it all at once. But the way that it was broken down made it much more approachable. And just like the analogy you’re using of a muscle, that’s exactly what I built over time. This muscle of understanding how to process the literature. How to apply it, in a client base. And then how to turn that into educational materials.

That was probably one of my favorite parts about the program; the homework that is designed, you build as you go one, becomes something. The advice that I had gotten; I don’t remember if this was part of your curriculum, or if I had an advisor who really just made sure that she told us to do this. But the advice we had gotten was to approach the homework so that you can use it as a business tool in the future. And I did. I put a lot of thought into the design, went above and beyond.

Dr. Ed Bauman: Totally. Absolutely. That was the purpose. The purpose is not to reiterate, but to create useful content. Yes. And that’s yours.

Cassy Joy: Absolutely. And it was so, so useful.

Dr. Ed Bauman: So the purpose is for people to own their health.

Cassy Joy: Absolutely. It was wonderful. I know, I’m sorry. Listeners; there’s a little bit of a lag. We’re not trying to cut each other off. {laughs} But that’s exactly what happened. And I walked away from the program with a library of resources that I don’t think I could have sat down and created off the bat. And it really helped me launch my business. So I do; I felt like I really did build a nutrition muscle.

Ok, so I would love to; if you don’t mind. You’ve already kind of mentioned some of the different curriculums that you offer through Bauman College. But do you mind talking about the different career paths that you’ve seen the training go towards and feed over the years.

Dr. Ed Bauman: For sure. So, I think there’s kind of a perspective. You have to look at nutrition as a field. And we’re in the same field as the dietetics; the dieticians. And we’re in the same field as people in other healing arts, who give nutrition advice. It’s not unusual for naturopaths and acupuncturists and chiropractors and health coaches. People love to talk about food and give advice.

So in starting the college, and making it a professional training, it really challenges people who already think they know quite a bit. Because a lot of people, it’s pretty simple on their level. But to really get depth and strength, they do have to work out in this field and kind of develop their skills.

And then, it’s about taking it into the world. And really not preaching to the converted, but looking for the people who are sort of in the middle. I would call them mainstream or whatnot. And then saying; look. I’m here to help you individually and as a group and as a company and as a system. To teach you the principles of holistic nutrition, which is whole food nutrition. And really there’s not as many barriers as people might perceive.

The world is changing. We have led the revolution. Bauman college has led the food revolution by doing this for 28 years. The message has really echoed, and now we see there’s farmer’s markets, and there are community gardens, and there’s natural food, and food fairs and all this good stuff. So many people are not well as a result of generations of bad eating and unhealthy environmental exposures. So they’re waking up.

And many of our people have private practice, and that’s fine. As long as you follow the laws of your state, and you don’t treat disease, you can teach people. You're a teacher. And you may work with someone who has an illness, but you go; I’m here to build health. By promoting health, disease begins to recede. So that’s our big message, is don’t fight disease, create strength and vitality and resiliency. Replete depleted stores of nutrition. So that opens up a lot of room.

And there are people who work at a clinical level. They work with a doctor, or in a clinic, chiropractor, acupuncture, naturopath, and they’re really part of this team. And what I encourage people to do is go to your local doctor; your family practitioner, your gynecologist, your dentist, your mental health people who are dealing with such a glut of depression and anxiety. And go; we know food is part of this. It’s not the whole solution, but without healthy food, how is an unwell person going to recover? And I can teach classes in your office. I can take referrals or work side by side with you to help someone who really needs that support and education across time to get well.

So people work clinically; people work in the community. They work in schools. They work in health clubs. They work in workshops. Some people do programs through their churches. So there’s really quite a lot of opportunity out there. And if you run into the dietetic people who go; we’re the only ones in our state who are licensed to do this, you can go; we can both do it. I can work with you. We can work together. Because you have a skillset, we have a skillset. Collaboration is really the progressive movement of education and healing.

So if you do it properly, and we show respect to other professionals, there are so many doors that open. I’ve been dedicating my time to working in hospital settings up here in California. And building integrative health, integrative medical services. And that’s pioneering work, because I am a pioneer and reformer. It’s making inroads. And people appreciate us; the Bauman graduates. Who are working together and talking about if someone has an immune issue. Certain nutrients and certain foods have value. And we’re not oppositional.

Cassy Joy: That’s wonderful. And I think that’s a really great way to talk about the lessons that I learned at Bauman, and truly what drew me to your program in general is just what you said. It was not oppositional; it was very collaborative and very, let’s empower and educate through food. The power of food and wellness practices. And so I think that definitely shines through, and has the power to move mountains. There are a lot of folks listening now that are nodding their heads, and have been personally touched by the power of knowledge and nutrition. Because when we know better we do better. And we want to share that message.

I would love it if you could touch on; you’ve already touched on this a little bit. But can you talk about how specifically the training; somebody is listening and they know that they want to do something in nutrition. And they know there are a couple of different options out there, as far as schooling goes. How does a training that they would get at a program, like Bauman college, differ from what you would consider a traditional curriculum?

Dr. Ed Bauman: That’s a very good question. You know, we’re lifelong learners. That’s the key here. My dad was a doctor; he was an orthodontist, so he came from a medication background. And he saw that his son was a natural health person. That’s me, right? And it took him a while to catch on to the value of who I am and what I was doing. And what he said; you better get; if you want to be recognized, and you’re going to be a leader in your field, get a doctorate. I got a masters when I was young; I was probably 25 or something like that. And I got a doctorate whenever I was pushing 40.

And I had a gal who came to our school recently who graduated from MIT and is a professor at Stanford. And she does Bauman from Boston, and I love your course. I love your course, and I loved my learning at MIT or at Stanford. Because she says this is my passion. This is what’s meaningful to me.

So again what we’re talking about nonduality and oldism and fitting in and all that; we’re not alternative people. We’re important revolutionary leading edge people who work well with others. And that’s some of the problem in the field, is argument; raw versus cooked, meat versus veg, etc. I don’t know, it’s all good if it’s based on good stuff. Good food, good soil, etc. And conscious choice.

A dietetic program is a difficult program to go through if you appreciate all natural foods. They can go to naturopathic school, and they can take seminars and workshops. What I’ve done since I’ve “retired” from the college, when I hit 70 I kind of turned out and said I want to retire and freelance. But I’m studying more, because that’s what I love. And I’m writing more, and I’m teaching in a freer way. Which is great.

So if this is your calling, this is what you’ll do forever and ever. And school gets you started, and then it gives you a certain kind of strength. And then you continue to develop. Most people teach what they needed to learn. So if somebody had an allergy issue, or an asthma issue, or a hormone issue, or a thyroid issue, or a brain issue, they needed to learn how to manage that and how to overcome that. And they got help. And they studied. And it takes years, but it works. This approach works.

And then once they got there, then they want to teach other people that and work in the field professionally with that. So it’s a great program. It’s not the last program. For many people it’s the first or second or third program in the nutrition and healing arts field. So, yeah. It has a unique feel and a unique learning style because it does challenge people to do their own work. Not just to take the work I did or someone else did and copy it and parrot it. And that’s a really big thing.

I’ve never looked for groupies or accolades. I’m proud of my students and they can speak their own truth. And as long as they’re authentic, and as long as they can back it up with data and experience, they do very well. And they’re held in the highest regard.

So when people go to a conference, or people meet other people, and they go, “I went to Bauman College,” most people, if not all, tip their hat. They go, that’s really impressive. That’s good stuff. So again, it’s not about me. It’s about the work and the process, and the value. Particularly, at this point in time, when things are falling apart. Things are changing. The medical system is changing. And the food system is changing. And we really want to lead the way that all people get access to whole foods and other kind of healing disciplines. That we’re not a country of people who are stuck on drugs, or stuck on cheap food, or dependent. This is something that we can really bring forward.

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Cassy Joy: I love that. And I really appreciate what you said. It’s very obvious that that was your intention, to allow your students to kind of pave their own way and create their own work. That is exactly what the curriculum did.

Though I learned about, of course, liver detoxification. That was probably my most challenging subject. And learned about; goodness. Cardiovascular health, mental health, and how real a foods approach can help to support a good healthy foundation. I was able to take that and apply it to what my curiosity points were.

And just like you said, I love that. It’s that the things I needed to learn turn out to be the things that I’m the most motivated to teach. And of course, I did have my own journey to health story. Which is why I started my blog to begin with. And which has blossomed into a book and a program. But it really is based around equipping people with some basic knowledge. And more of a compass than dogmatic rules, right? So let’s put a compass in your hand and allow you to figure out how to navigate this. Because that’s what I felt like I was really searching for. Was something that could point to north, but allow me to find my own path in terms of good health.

That’s wonderful. What advice would you have for individuals listening who are considering a career in holistic nutrition? Is there anything that you would want them to consider sooner than later?

Dr. Ed Bauman: Well the sooner you get started the better the effect. So a long journey begins with a single step. And I do think there’s a lot of creative amateurs who are trying to advise people. But they lack the experience, the skill, the support, the mentorship, of doing it. So it’s like music. You can play a little bit of music just fooling around. But if you're going to be a good musician, you're going to have a teacher and you're going to have lessons and you're going to start with simple material and then get more complex and then decide you're going into folk or jazz or blues or classical. And it’s a lifelong pursuit.

Some people go; gee, it seems like a lot of money. It’s not a lot of money at all for the value you receive. Because on the personal level, people inevitably go through quite an important personal transformation, and they step into their power. And that’s tremendous. I can’t tell you how many parents have said to me; gosh, your program really changed my relative. Whether it’s a husband, wife, daughter, or even mother. And it just helped them step into their own sense of being and their own clarity and their own life mission. I’m in love with that.

And we’re not the only good school out there. So I don’t; again, it’s not oppositional. But it has great value. And even the learning modes are changing. The online programs are changing. The way education is being communicated is changing. For the good.

So I have people I work with who went to other colleges and other schools, and they go to our school too. Because they go; we need to learn what you guys are teaching. And that’s good. But I think our industry is rather product driven. That’s the way culture is. America is a business state. It’s not a democracy, it’s not progressive. It’s really about business. And unfortunately, if you read the paper, it’s more about money and power than it is about empowerment. So I’m on the other end of the spectrum as power to the people, and creating gardens and creating food workshops and creating potlucks and dinner parties will really change people in a profound way. Because a lot of people don’t know how to cook. They don’t know how to shop. They don’t know how to eat. They’re not happy, they’re not nourished, they’re not satisfied. And they really want to figure out how to get well.

Again, it’s really a cool time for us. And it gives people a sense of power rather than learned helplessness. Which is, “Oh, I don’t feel well. I’ll go to my doctor and I’ll get another medication. And maybe it will work, maybe it won’t.” And all that. I work with doctors. Doctors and I get along. We can talk about patients. We can talk about best practices.

And the idea is, we’re not doing medicine and they’re not doing nutrition. So a Bauman graduate can work side by side with a psychologist, a psychiatrist, a serious level professional. And go; let me work the food angle with these people. Or the healing arts, the culinary arts, therapeutic side of it. Because it’s more than just you have a supplement line and you can look in a book and go A, B, C, here’s your product have a nice day. And the person doesn’t even know what the products are or the products may or may not agree with the medicines. The connection with the earth. The connection with the plants. The connection with the animals. The connection with their own kind of attitude and belief systems. Because people have to clean up a lot of mental emotional work.

Our program really; when you're working with your clients. Which you’ve done with cases. A good bit of it is emotional. It’s not just rational. It’s not just; eat three servings of vegetables at each meal and have a nice day. People have a lot of emotional work around being fed or being force-fed or being underfed or all that. Economics. So cost of good food. We’re dealing with the whole person in a whole way. And even other people who are new to the holistic game, I don’t feel like they get it. I just feel like they’re learning it. And it takes a while.

They just step into having enough knowledge to communicate effectively, and not to oversell or overtreat people. Because an immature practitioner; nutritionist or otherwise, will go; you have three problems. Here’s 9 products. Not; let’s start with the foundation, which is diet, lifestyle, and attitude.

Cassy Joy: Mm-hmm. Absolutely. Very well said, Dr. Bauman. Thank you so much.

Dr. Ed Bauman: I think I’m passionate about this work. {laughs}

Cassy Joy: Just a little bit. {laughs}

Dr. Ed Bauman: And I’m more so now than I was 5 years ago. That’s the cool part. You get older, and you really, really hunker down into the work. You see it, and I’m so touched by you. And I’m touched by other people who choose to go this route. It’s not an easy route, so not let’s make any illusions there. It’s not impossible, because you work as hard as you work.

Just like music or fitness or any skill. If you study sports, the athletes who are the most successful are the athletes who really dial it in. They study it, they live it, they work it, they breathe it. And they do it with the joy and spirit. So that’s the other part of Bauman. And eating for health. It’s really based on spirit. It’s based on love. Love is what motivates us to want to get out there and find the answers to difficult questions. And then transmit that through kindness rather than through a sales pitch. I think that’s kind of what’s driven me for the past 50 years. So I’d say 35 years I’ve been leading the way. It’s getting longer than that. I could be a while more.

Cassy Joy: Absolutely. That’s wonderful. Beautifully said again. It was an honor to go through your program, and it is an honor to continue to do this work and carry the torch and let it morph and move how it’s supposed to move. It’s definitely been the journey of a lifetime. The passion is definitely in me, and it’s one of those in the blog world, especially, as with I’m sure many of your professional pursuits. It takes just a little bit of insanity. {laughing} To be able to see through.

Dr. Ed Bauman: We’re not trying to fit in. We’re trying to move the world.

Cassy Joy: Exactly!

Dr. Ed Bauman: That’s the real dynamic here. There’s no point to fitting into a dysfunctional toxic culture. The point is to try to lead the world forward and to really know that that’s doable. And there’s great support for that to happen. There’s lots of people who go; yes, yes, yes. So I’m happy that we can do that.

And I want to invite people to our national meeting. The national organization is called NANP. Which is the National Association of Nutrition Professionals. And we do an annual meeting. And it is open to people who want to come. This year it will be in Monterrey, California. It’s the end of April. So people can check that out and look it up. If they’re professionals, they can come as a professional. If they’re a student they can come as a student. If they’re a non-professional, they can come as a non-professional. It’s three days of excellent meetings and lectures and networking and vendors and laboratory testing and all that good stuff. It represents quite a lot of excellent, trained holistic nutritionists.

And holistic is a word to be proud of. People are worried about; oh, it’s different, it’s alternative. No, holistic is valuable. It speaks to the whole. I think it’s a really good thing to lock into if that’s part of your own kind of consciousness.

Cassy Joy: I love that. I agree. I’m very proud of my holistic perspective and approach to nutrition. And I think it does a really good job of quickly distinguishing between the approach of what we’re up to and what maybe some other options are that are out there.

Well Dr. Bauman, I hate to end this because I really enjoyed our conversation. But aside from the even coming up; and I will provide links to everything in the show notes so that if folks are driving and they didn’t have a chance to jot it down, they can just refer back to the website. But if you don’t mind closing us out, tell us a little bit about BaumanWellness.com and what projects and goals you have for this coming year.

Dr. Ed Bauman: Yeah. Thank you. I’m still founder and president of Bauman College. I’m still very proud of how our school is growing and serving. And then as I say, I don’t have to deal with the management side. We have very capable people doing that. The educational leadership is continuing on in a great way.

So, what do I want to do when I grow up? Is just to create my own kind of music so to speak. So Bauman Wellness is my private practice and my teaching. I lead retreats and cleanses. And all kinds of different programs. Some I do by myself, but right now, it’s not a group practice per se. It’s just the type of work that I do. I mentioned before, I’m very active with hospital work and bringing education and research. And really aiming to open up the door. Creating a model is what I’ve largely done and continue to do. And so taking our work and legitimizing it, and showing that it has value. Getting to know doctors, which is very interesting.

And hospitals are a bit more restrictive, for obvious reasons. But nevertheless, education is education. And patients who come in with a stroke or a heart attack or surgery, they don’t have a clue what hit them. They have no clue. And when they leave, if there’s not a wellness educator there. Not necessarily to fix them, but to teach them. And then to follow up with them, they’ll just come back. And in days of managed health, hospitals really don’t want frequent flyers. It’s too expensive. Or they’ll refuse service.

So as we go forward with this Trump administration, and this Trumped up system of really taking money out of welfare programs and out of social programs and out of state budgets and all that, self-care becomes health care. So really my mission now is to teach self-care. And food and lifestyle and all varieties. Meditation and building community is really what I’m and Bauman Wellness are about.

But I do work with people. I enjoy working with people one on one. I’ll be doing some collaborative virtual classes next year. I haven’t launched them yet, but that’s something I’m gearing up for. And that will be great.

Cassy Joy: That will be great! That’s so exciting. Well, Dr. Bauman, I can’t thank you enough for taking the time out of your day to come and share so much of this wonderful wisdom and knowledge that you have with our audience. It really means a lot.

As for everybody listening, remember that I will provide links to everything that we talked about in the show notes so you don’t have to remember to jot anything down. But thank you so much for coming on the show today, Dr. Bauman.

Dr. Ed Bauman: I look forward to meeting you and many of our listeners. That would be a real treat.

Cassy Joy: That would be, definitely. Well thanks everybody for joining us. As always, we’ll be back again next week.


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