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Traditional Foods – Where Tradition Meets Science with Tammera J. Karr, Ph.D.

Is there a problem with modern food? Is it the food – or how it is prepared? Should we eat all the same or like our ancestors? How far back do we need to go for traditional foods to be healthy? Whole Foods are wonderful, but are we maximizing their nutrient value?

These are just a few of the questions being asked of Holistic and Functional nutrition professionals in 2021. The answers can be contradictory, confusing, and out of touch with modern life.

Hawthorn University Holistic Health and Nutrition Webinar Series welcomes Tammera J. Karr, Ph.D. for her presentation Traditional Foods – Where Tradition Meets Science*.

Join Tammera Karr, Ph.D., author of Our Journey with Food and the newly released Empty Plate: Food~Sustainability~Mindfulness as she regales us with the tales of the past that lead us on a journey of food healing; for the present and future—sharing her intuitive and holistic understanding of the historical threads that make the wellness pattern through whole foods.

Additionally, a bright spotlight will illuminate some of the problems with “canned” diet plans and open the door to a far tastier way to live.

When it comes to food, scientific research often fails to do more than answer part of a question. Questions are subjective to perspective, often allowing for only one variable. Typically research looks at one ingredient and forgets that food is more than a sum of its parts. More importantly, is how different foods work together to increase synergy. That’s why recipes and cooking techniques evolved as part of traditional foods and cultures over generations.

We have lost many cooking and cultivation/animal husbandry practices in a rush to modernize and increase wealth; this knowledge allowed past generations a synergistic utilization of nutrients in the environment that produced our food. Our ancestors had the gift of time to adapt human digestion to foods otherwise undigestable through cooking and fermenting. The haste to embrace technology and science has propelled humankind into a growing malnourishment of body and spirit. We are potentially altering our human DNA adversely for future generations. Yet, as dire as that sounds, the damage is repairable; health is sustainable for everyone and much easier than once thought.

The Learning Objectives of this presentation are to:

• Explore what science has learned about ancient diets and dispelling food myths;
• Discuss how the local environment and food culture added to the nutrient synergy of foods. Open the door for moving into practical, sustainable, and regenerative approaches in the modern world;
• Learn how traditional foods support wellness in a clinical setting. For clients to achieve sustainable health, they need tools that are practical and pertinent to their life. Perspective and communication between clients and clinicians are essential.

TAMMERA J. KARR, Ph.D., BCHN®, CGP, CNW®, with 20 plus years of clinical experience, is an author, educator, food historian and researcher. Passionate about nutrition as the key to stopping many modern illnesses, Tammera first-authored Our Journey with Food in 2015 and the expanded second edition in 2018. Our Journey with Food Cookery Book followed and adds to the story filling in many gaps in food knowledge for health.

Believing “Traditional Foods” is all about community, Tammera went on to create Our Journey with Food Online Education in 2020; This course, while initially created for nurses eager to use food as medicine, is equally suitable for anyone wanting to return to traditional food and health models. This program inspired the expansion of key concepts of Holistic Nutrition in the book co-authored with Holistic Nurse Kathleen Bell, Empty Plate: Food~Sustainability~Mindfulness (November 2020).

Tammera has served on the boards of the National Association of Nutrition Professionals (NANP), Oregon Holistic Nurses Association (ONHA), and is currently a special advisor for ONHA and serves on the American Naturopathic Certification Board (ANCB). Answering the need for online education opportunities for Holistic Nurses and Natural Health students, Tammera is the primary instructor for HN4UOnline.Ed at and provides more information through her online Blog at

A Native of Oregon, Tammera enjoys the challenge of nutrition research, food history, traditional food preservation: canning, drying and fermenting and traditional whole food cooking. Tammera and her family have lived in remote areas of Oregon for over fifty years; being prepared for the unexpected is second nature. She resides on a remote Ranger Station in Central Southern Oregon and spends time exploring nature and history with her husband of forty years and Australian Shepard Sadie.

*© 2021 Holistic Nutrition for the Whole You

Disclaimer: The webinars may present information that does not fully reflect Hawthorn University’s philosophy. Nonetheless, these presentations have been chosen because of their overall quality of information.