Insightful Wisdom: Cristy Kisner Of Cristy’s Kitchen On The Power of Food as Medicin

Insightful Wisdom: Cristy Kisner Of Cristy’s Kitchen On The Power of Food as Medicin

Avocados: They are a delicious treasure. Eat an avocado daily and your heart will thank you. Avocado oil contains 71 percent monounsaturated fatty acids, 13 percent polyunsaturated fatty acids, and 16 percent saturated fatty acids, a balance that promotes a healthy blood lipid profile. In addition, its smoke point is very high (520 F) which makes it a perfect oil for cooking and frying.


In an era dominated by pharmaceutical solutions, there is a rising consciousness about the incredible healing and preventive powers of food. As the age-old saying goes, “Let food be thy medicine, and medicine be thy food.” But how does this translate in today’s world? Can we really use nutrition as a potent tool against sickness and disease? How does one curate a diet that supports health, longevity, and wellness? In this series, we are talking to nutritionists, dietitians, medical professionals, holistic health experts, and anyone with authoritative knowledge on the subject. As a part of this series, we had the pleasure of interviewing Cristy Kisner.

Cristy Kisner grew up in a small town in Peru. Cristy’s family continued to grow — she and her husband, Sebastian, have five beautiful girls. From an early age, Cristy’s daughters developed different health conditions starting with respiratory allergies and eczema. Little by little, she discovered the relationship that existed between their health and the food, the kind of food, and most important, the quality of food. Cristy confirmed that a gluten-free and dairy-free diet, prepared at home with organic and nutritious products, helped to improve her daughter’s health.

They moved to America and found a beautiful little house in Roswell, Georgia to set up the bakery they had always dreamed of. They called it Cristy’s Kitchen. Today, their work at Cristy’s Kitchen not only allows them to give their daughters a better life, but to help many families who have dietary restrictions and who are looking for a warm and safe space to improve their health without sacrificing the pleasure of having a delicious meal.

Earlier this year, Cristy published her cookbook by the same name, Cristy’s Kitchen, featuring more than 130 scrumptious and nourishing recipes without gluten, dairy, or processed sugars. Packed full of food that is delicious, incredibly healthy, and full of love, Cristy’s cookbook is a way for everyone to bring Cristy’s Kitchen into their home.

Visit for more information.

Thank you so much for joining us in this interview series! Before we dive into the main focus of our interview, our readers would love to “get to know you” a bit better. Can you tell us a bit about your childhood backstory?

Igrew up in a small town in the south of Peru. My parents had a small store where they sold groceries and my mother baked beautiful cakes, breads, empanadas and other delicacies. I spent afternoons sitting at the kitchen table looking at her cookbooks, but I was never interested in learning her craft until I became a mom and learned the power of home cooking.

What or who inspired you to pursue your career? We’d love to hear the story.

I never thought I would end up pursuing a career in cooking. When I became pregnant with my oldest daughter, my first thought was, ‘I have to provide her with the best.’ So, I began taking breastfeeding classes. When she was born and started eating solid food, I focused on carefully selecting ingredients and combining them in powerful ways.

As my family grew, my passion for learning how to better care for them grew as well. Allergies were present from the beginning, and I firmly believed that medicine should not be the sole solution. I was reluctant to give them daily medication just because it was considered ‘normal.’ As a mother, the only aspect I could control was their diet, and I saw it as my weapon in the fight for my daughters’ health. It worked! I began eliminating dairy products and the few packaged items I used to buy, such as bread or cookies, and started cooking everything from scratch.

There came a point when other mothers at school approached me to provide cooking classes. Their daughters found my daughters’ lunchboxes fascinating. At first, I hesitated because I didn’t think I had the personality to teach, but it turned out that I thoroughly enjoyed those classes. I created a Facebook page to share my ongoing research about ingredients and the recipes I was developing.

Along the way, we discovered that my second daughter had a severe gluten intolerance. That’s when I realized that she had to completely change all my recipes and my house had to be free of cross-contamination with gluten. And this was an incredible practice for what was to come.

My oldest daughter received a diagnosis of a very rare variant of an already rare autoimmune disease. When conventional medicine couldn’t provide answers, a feeling inside me told me that food could be the solution. After discussing with her pediatrician and realizing that the current treatment was not effective and resources were exhausted, he supported my decision to eliminate medications and try a specific diet. After three months, my daughter became symptom-free.

So, if you ask me what inspired my career, it’s clear: my daughters are the driving force in my life.

It has been said that our mistakes can sometimes be our greatest teachers. Can you share a story about the funniest mistake you made when you were first starting? Can you tell us what lesson you learned from that?

I don’t think it was a mistake, but rather a learning curve. In Peru, when I started cooking gluten-free, dairy-free I did not have the resources to study how the chemistry of these new ingredients works, it was a really new subject and there was no information to learn how to bake successfully, there were no books available or cooking classes specialized in this area. So, everything was (and is even today) trial and error, and through observation understanding how the ingredients reacted chemically with each other. Every recipe was tested and tested, until I achieved the perfect balance in the recipe to get the perfect texture and flavor.

Today, with the experience gained from these tests, the recipes start in my head, and I thoroughly analyze them before I start cooking to minimize ingredient waste.

You are a successful leader. Which three character traits do you think were most instrumental to your success? Can you please share a story or example for each?

I am a very stubborn person, I don’t give up easily, and I tend to question absolutely everything. If a doctor told me, this can only be cured with this medicine, I would ask thousands of questions, I always need to understand how the human body works, what exactly that medicine does, and what are the alternatives, treatments, what foods can be beneficial, I’m not a person who trusts a single opinion. When one of my daughter’s doctors told me that I was being irresponsible, that my daughter needed biological medicine and antibiotic prophylaxis for life and immunoregulatory pills, I knew inside me, with my mother’s intuition, that that was not the way, and I had to try it myself. And when time and the diet proved me right, this same doctor called me, and asked me to give a talk to him and his colleagues about the diet my daughter followed and the supplements he gave her. I went to the hospital and presented the case as a success story, and that day that group of doctors opened the door to something they did not believe in before: that food is medicine.

Resilience, I believe, is something I learned over time through the hardships of life. It taught me to overcome any obstacle, and I’ve come to understand that each challenge offers us important lessons. We can’t move on to the next chapter without having thoroughly learned the previous one. If we try to skip a lesson or cheat our way through, life has a way of presenting it to us again, often in a stronger and more challenging form, until we conquer it. With my family we have overcome a bankruptcy, we have overcome very complicated health situations, very painful as parents, we have risked moving our family to a new country without a penny in our pockets, we ventured to start all over again, we have lived near-death situations to realize that what really matters in life is giving our best even in the worst circumstances.

Passion. There is nothing worse in life than living a life you don’t want. When you have passion for something, you put your heart and soul into it. And when you do something with love, there is no way it can go wrong. Finding a passion and a purpose is what allows us to do things that make us happy. When I get into the kitchen to create a recipe I put my heart into it and I hope that love and energy are tasted in my food.

What are some of the most interesting or exciting projects you are working on now? How do you think that might help people?

My mission is to empower people to believe in themselves, to believe that their body is a perfect machine and to function correctly, it needs the right fuel, real food. We are what we eat, and we are also what we feel and what we think, we are complete and complex beings. I want to give them all the options so that they can eat healthy, so that they can give their families all those nutrients they need and so that they find in the kitchen a space to share with their families and create beautiful memories around food. I offer frozen food for when they don’t have time to cook, baking mixes so they can cook healthy in a short time, and my recipes through my blog, social media, and my cookbook, so they can enjoy cooking as a family while learning about the benefits of each ingredient.

We have recently launched our new website where people can order all our products from anywhere in the country.

OK, thank you for all of that. Let’s now shift to the core focus of our interview about cultivating wellness through proper nutrition and diet. To begin, can you tell our readers a bit about why you are an authority on the topic of nutrition?

I am not a nutritionist, so I do not believe I am an authority on nutrition. However, I consider myself curious enough to have learned about the benefits of many foods. I dare say that every human being is different and reacts differently to certain foods. Therefore, there’s no one-size-fits-all perfect diet for all of us. Each food has its unique properties and benefits, but what’s good for me may not be as suitable for you. The crucial aspect is to learn to listen to our bodies, to identify what’s beneficial and what’s not.

For me, the starting point is always nature. Nature is wise and provides us with what we need for good health. So, every time we contemplate whether or not to include a particular food in our diet, we should begin by asking ourselves, ‘Where does it come from?’

We all know that it’s important to eat more vegetables, eat less sugar, etc. But while we know it intellectually, it’s often difficult to put it into practice and make it a part of our daily habits. In your opinion what are the main blockages that prevent us from taking the information that we all know, and integrating it into our lives?

I think the problem comes when the message is taken as restrictive, as a sacrifice or imposition. Because if we understood, in-depth, the reasons why we should put these principles into practice and we saw, for example, vegetables as our great allies and we learned how to cook them in delicious ways, they would be part of our lives without a doubt.

When we think about desserts, for example, the feeling of guilt overcomes us. If it’s delicious, it has to be bad for my health, but it’s because we haven’t chosen the right dessert, it’s not the same to eat a store-bought brownie made with refined white sugar, GMO flour, and a ton of vegetable margarine and artificial flavorings as a homemade brownie made with almond flour, small amount of coconut sugar, real cacao, moringa powder, and adaptogenic mushrooms, everything organic and nutrient-rich. Do you see the difference? That piece of healthy brownie is going to leave us satisfied, nourished, and happy and we only need a small piece, on the other hand, the other brownie from the store is only going to leave us wanting more (because of the highly addictive ingredients) and feeling guilty for having given our body that sugar bomb.

Information is power, and to take control of our health we must learn how to choose and cook the right foods.

From your professional perspective, do you believe that nutrition plays a pivotal role in supporting the body’s natural healing processes and overall well-being, particularly in cases of chronic diseases? We’re interested in hearing your insights on the connection between a holistic approach to diet and its benefits for individuals facing health challenges.

I believe that our body is a perfect machine that needs the right food to function properly. But here comes another very important factor that we usually forget about. We are complex beings, we are body, mind, and soul. And it is useless to give our physical body the best organic ingredients if when we eat them, we do so in a state of stress, of survival. When we are in survival mode our body is prepared to fight or fly, it is not thinking about properly digesting that organic broccoli we just ate, or repairing damaged tissue, or creating a balance in our gut microbiota.

So, when we face health challenges, we must keep in mind all aspects of our lives. How do we feel, what negative thoughts do we have, what takes away our peace and balance, how are we sleeping at night, are we happy? Are we choosing real food? What about the products we put on our skin, what products we clean our house with, are they toxic? It’s not just about adding kale, some protein powder and a green juice to our breakfast, or not buying the toxic muffin from the store, but about analyzing our lifestyle and making real changes. Every illness or challenge in our lives, is an opportunity to make a stop and analyze our life to create changes for the better.

Based on your research or experience could you share with us five examples of foods or dietary patterns that have demonstrated remarkable potential in preventing, reducing, or managing specific health conditions? If you can, it would be insightful if you could provide real-life examples of their curative properties.

1. Grass-fed grass-finished beef: This topic generates significant controversy, encompassing various factors such as religious beliefs, ethics, and studies of questionable origins. As with everything, we should analyze it from a natural perspective. Biologically, human beings require protein, and the best and most complete source is of animal origin. This is a fact. However, there is a substantial difference between consuming grass-fed and grass-finished meat from a cow that has grazed in a meadow, leading a happy and peaceful life, free from growth hormones and antibiotics, and meat from a cow that has been confined in a small stable, crammed with 500 other cows, consuming processed food in pellet form, while receiving hormones and antibiotics, leading a miserable life.

The nutritional content of these two types of meat differs significantly. Grass-fed and grass-finished meat, which falls into the first category, contributes positively to our health. It provides essential nutrients such as omega-3 fatty acids, taurine, anserine, and creatine, all of which play crucial roles in muscle function and brain health.

In contrast, the second type, industrial grain-fed meat, promotes inflammation and disease. It is replete with hormones, antibiotics, and pesticides, including the potentially hazardous glyphosate linked to cancer. This type of meat contains an abundance of inflammatory omega-6 fats from corn and is deficient in anti-inflammatory omega-3 fats.

So, can we conclude that meat is harmful to our health? Indeed, but only if we consume meat from cows raised in laboratory-like conditions, as processed products instead of real animals.

2. Broccoli: It is one of my favorite ingredients, due to its sulforaphane compound, which boasts remarkable anti-cancer, anti-diabetic, cardio-protective, antioxidant, and anti-inflammatory properties. It’s rich in glucosinolates , which serve as precursors (i.e., converted into) to isothiocyanates, known for their potent anticancer effects. Sulforaphane, found most abundantly in broccoli, is considered a phytonutrient. Broccoli sprouts contain even higher concentrations of sulforaphane. We can say that 2 oz of broccoli sprouts contain the same amount of sulforaphane as 200 g of cooked broccoli. When cooking broccoli, consider methods such as steaming to retain more glucoraphanin, while boiling may lead to nutrient loss in the water. Consuming raw broccoli may slow nutrient absorption. Scientific studies suggest that consuming two daily servings of cooked broccoli can reduce colorectal cancer risk. For those who dislike the taste, sulforaphane supplements, while not a substitute for real food, offer a good alternative.

3. Bone Broth: There’s nothing like a delicious, well-made bone broth, and if you include chicken feet, the nutritional value (and the flavor of your broth) will increase dramatically, starting with the calcium content. The cooking process triggers the release of healing compounds found within animal tissue, such as collagen (and its amino acids), glucosamine, and hyaluronic acid, which help reduce inflammation throughout the body, including the digestive tract (by helping beneficial bacteria grow), and relieve pain in connective tissues for conditions such as arthritis. A good bone broth also contains vital minerals such as calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, and sulfur and can protect against migraine headaches. So, if you get sick, your mom will give you chicken soup. Maternal wisdom.

4. Adaptogenic mushrooms: Adaptogenic substances are believed to have the capacity to normalize body functions and strengthen systems compromised by stress. Adaptogenic mushrooms like reishi, chaga, turkey tail, lion’s mane, and cordyceps have been used therapeutically for centuries for their ability to help the body’s natural healing processes. They support the immune system, help to reduce stress and restore hormonal balance, and have anti-inflammatory properties. Some studies suggest that they have anticancer, antiviral, and antibacterial properties as well. We can consume them in powder form, as liquid extracts or fresh because they are also delicious.

5. Avocados: They are a delicious treasure. Eat an avocado daily and your heart will thank you. Avocado oil contains 71 percent monounsaturated fatty acids, 13 percent polyunsaturated fatty acids, and 16 percent saturated fatty acids, a balance that promotes a healthy blood lipid profile. In addition, its smoke point is very high (520 F) which makes it a perfect oil for cooking and frying.

This oil also improves the bioavailability of fat-soluble vitamins and phytochemicals in other fruits and vegetables when eaten together.

Consuming avocados helps maintain cardiovascular health and supports weight management (since it provides satiety and energy) and healthy aging.

Do experts generally agree that merely choosing healthy foods isn’t sufficient, but that understanding how to consume them is key to unlocking their full health benefits? (For example, skins on/off, or cooked/raw, or whole grain/refined grain) Could you provide advice on how to approach this and sidestep common errors or misconceptions?”

This depends on each particular food. For example, rice naturally absorbs arsenic from the soil, even organic rice, because it is something that happens naturally. However, it is said that brown rice is healthier than white because it offers fiber. But white rice has less arsenic because some of it is eliminated with the husk. And what about fiber? If you eat a balanced diet, you get fiber from another source. So, we deduce that white rice is better than brown rice.

Another example involves broccoli, the best way to eat it is steamed because if we eat it raw, as we chew it for longer, the sulforaphane is produced quickly, and not all of it reaches the intestine to be absorbed. It is lost in the way to be digested.

With the recent prominence of nutrition’s integration into healthcare, what’s your perspective on the collaborative approach between medical professionals, health coaches, and nutrition experts when it comes to delivering holistic patient care? Can you please explain?

A medical consultation should begin with questions such as: What do you eat daily? How do you feel? Are you experiencing sleep difficulties? Do you take any nutritional supplements? Have you recently experienced a crisis or a painful event? Because we are complete and complex human beings, a medical approach must encompass all aspects of the patient’s life to gather the necessary information for implementing a comprehensive protocol to enhance our health.

When we search for the root of the problem rather than just turn off symptoms, we can assist individuals in not only feeling better but also in preventing many diseases that may result from an inaccurate diagnosis. Often, by making simple dietary changes, the body can restore its balance.

It’s been suggested that using ‘food as medicine’ has the potential to reduce healthcare costs by preventing disease severity. However, there’s concern about the affordability of healthier food options. What solutions do you believe could make nutritious choices accessible to everyone, ensuring that food truly becomes a form of medicine for all?

It’s not that real, organic food is expensive, but we are used to processed food that is excessively low cost because it has no real ingredients.

We are not spending more on organic food but investing in our health. For example, when we stop buying junk food and we feel good, we now have more energy, and more health, and our body will want more of that, then without even realizing it, we will stop buying the box of cookies full of dyes, we will stop craving that plastic hamburger accompanied by genetically modified tomatoes, we will no longer return for that coffee with 25 teaspoons of sugar and flavorings. And we will see how all this affects our spending habits.

There are many ways in addition to saving money when we buy organic ingredients, buying in bulk is one of them. For example, instead of buying a small jar of organic dried herbs, we can buy a one-pound bag that will cost us more the first time, but we will have supplies for a while. We can also grow our food, even in small spaces, we can grow our food in small planters or on a balcony, there are so many ways we can have many vegetables and herbs that will help us reduce our bills.

Everyone’s body is unique, and what works for one might not work for another. How does one navigate the vast array of nutritional advice available today to curate a diet tailored to individual needs, ensuring health and longevity?

Information is power. When we teach a person to listen to their body, to recognize which foods benefit them and which foods cause inflammation, there’s no need to construct a formal ‘diet.’ Observation and intuition will guide them in harmony with their body’s signals. That is why educating ourselves is very important. We also have the support of science, today it is possible to know our nutritional levels in detail with just a blood test, we can also know how our genetics work, and that gives us a guide to choose certain supplements or foods. Furthermore, we can have a comprehensive map of our gut microbiota, that will give us many answers about our health.

As our understanding of the intricate link between food and health continues to evolve, we’re curious to know which emerging trends or breakthroughs in nutritional science excite you the most. How do you envision these advancements shaping the future of healthcare?

I hope that functional medicine, which sees the patient as a human being and not just another number at the hospital, becomes an increasingly common practice and can be included in the services that health insurance pays for. Prevention should be our main mission. I hope that science is not used to solve or justify our tendency to move away from nature, instead, I hope that it will be used to better understand how our body works and our deficiencies or specific needs, and thus be able to solve our problems with foods chosen specifically for the individual needs of each person.

How can we better educate the public about the medicinal properties of food, and what role do professionals like you play in this educational journey?

Everything enters through the eyes, unfortunately, nowadays people want everything easy and quick, and if we offer them a book full of incredible and very useful information, perhaps they will not appreciate it as much as a photo of a delicious and very attractive dish. So, the way to get people’s attention so that they are interested in their health is by offering them delicious and powerful recipes, full of nutrients and quality organic ingredients.

How can our readers further follow your work online?

They can find me on Instagram as @cristyskitchenga and also on my website where in addition to sharing recipes, I also have a blog with interesting information about a healthy lifestyle.

Through my website, they can also order frozen food, cookies, and baking mixes from anywhere in the country.

And of course, they can also purchase my cookbook “Cristy’s Kitchen” through Amazon, Target and Walmart apps, Barnes & Noble, and many other local bookstores.

Thank you for these really excellent insights, and we greatly appreciate the time you spent with this. We wish you continued success and good health!

Thank YOU for this fabulous opportunity.


About the Interviewer: Wanda Malhotra, a Certified Health Coach and wellness entrepreneur with 28 years of experience, is the visionary founder behind Crunchy Mama Box, a Mission-driven Marketplace promoting healthier, sustainable living. Committed to social engagement, Wanda supports causes like environmental preservation, animal welfare, mental health, human rights, and social responsibility. Through her work, Wanda writes passionately about clean beauty, wellness, nutrition, social impact, and eco-friendly living. She shares valuable insights, advocating holistic health and sustainability, and aims to simplify wellness with curated resources. Join Wanda and the Crunchy Mama Box community in embracing a healthier, more sustainable lifestyle at


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