John Bagnulo, PhD, MPH

John Bagnulo, PhD, MPH

John teaches nutrition in Kripalu’s Healthy Living programs. He holds a doctorate in food and nutrition sciences from the University of Maine and a Master of Public Health from the University of North Carolina. John served as nutritionist at Canyon Ranch in the Berkshires and is currently on the faculty of the Center for Mind-Body Medicine. A frequent lecturer on topics including weight loss, detoxification, and chronic disease treatment and prevention, John is also a passionate mountain climber who reached the top of Mt. Everest as part of a two-man team.
Posted on July 5th, 2013 by in Kripalu Kitchen, Nutrition

Kripalu Recipe: Breakfast Smoothie

This is the foundation to my family’s favorite start to the day. It’s simple, extremely nutrient-dense, can be made with local fruits (as well as bananas when we want to include them)—and it tastes great! I recommend different versions of this raw breakfast for individuals who need to avoid various types of gluten or are [...]

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Posted on May 10th, 2013 by in Kripalu Kitchen, Nutrition

Detox Deconstructed

Nutrition and lifestyle choices to support the body’s natural release of toxins “Detoxification” can be interpreted in a variety of ways. Kripalu’s Healthy Living programs teach people how to support the body’s natural detoxification process. Detox is conducted primarily by the liver, which removes toxins from the body by converting them from a fat-soluble state [...]

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Posted on October 16th, 2012 by in Nutrition

Harvest Nutrition

Although most of the fruits and vegetables we associate with autumn are not related botanically, they offer our bodies a consistent nutritional theme. Apples, pears, grapes, beets, and squash are all excellent sources of soluble fiber and all but the squash are great sources of one particular type of soluble fiber: pectin. Pectin has a long list of research-substantiated health effects that range from lowering cholesterol levels to removing heavy metals and other contaminants from the body. This is truly nature’s soft detox agent and a great way to prepare for the short days of winter.

In addition to this great source of soluble fiber, these fruits and vegetables are very alkalizing as they are all great sources of potassium. They have unique phytonutrients that are protective against carcinogens. The ellagic acid in grapes and the betacyanin in beets stand out in this area, but winter squash varieties that cook to a dark orange are loaded with a wide variety of carotenoids that offer similar protection. Autumn makes it easy to eat the amount of fruits and vegetables that we need to feel our best.

What are your favorite autumn fruits or vegetables to eat? Share your recipes!

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Posted on September 27th, 2012 by in Healthy Living, Nutrition

Gardening in the Fall

How to plant for a beautiful spring harvest

Just because summer’s coming to a close doesn’t mean that you need to close up your backyard garden. Many homegrown vegetables can survive—and even thrive—over the cold winter months. Kripalu Healthy Living nutritionist John Bagnulo, PhD,MPH,who farms organically at his home in Maine, offers his tips for ensuring a bountiful spring.

Start simple. Beets and carrots are by far the most low-maintenance vegetables you can plant now and enjoy in the spring. My favorite varieties are Chioggia for beets and Mokum for carrots. Simply work a good amount of compost or aged cow manure into the ground (a container works well for small spaces). Manure is my personal favorite fertilizer, as compost means different things today than it did 20 years ago when I started gardening. Now, the demand is so great that producers are cutting corners and many composts are not well developed.You could also try planting some berries. Strawberries planted in the fall can be ready the following spring. So can blueberries, though it generally takes blueberries much longer to truly become productive.

Plant wisely. Plant seeds about 1/2″ deep and water them well. After the weather turns really cold, cover them with a thick layer of straw or chopped straw—not leaves, as those can suffocate the growth below when they get packed down with the first couple of rains or snowfalls. This cover will keep the frost from pushing the ground up and out, which exposes young plants or seeds.

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Posted on April 24th, 2012 by in Ask the Expert, Nutrition

Ask the Expert: What Not to Eat and What’s Good for You

In this edition of Ask the Expert, John Bagnulo, PhD, Kripalu Healthy Living faculty, addresses questions on whether to eat or avoid common ingredients including fish, eggs, stevia, and whey.

The jury still seems out on the benefits vs. harm of eating fish. Based on the newest available evidence, what are the biggest risks, and do you recommend eating it at all?

I do advise people to eat fish. It offers nutrients that are more elusive in a vegan diet, without the health compromises that other sources of animal protein require you to make. I highly recommend sardines and mackerel as they are small, very clean, and packed with beneficial oils and trace minerals. They are on my top-five food list, in spite of being animals. I recommend that people avoid all big fish, especially large varieties of tuna and swordfish. These are tainted with PCBs, which I am much more concerned with than mercury.

Is there any harm in eating just egg whites (not the yolks)?

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