Berkshire Holistic Associates

Services Tailored to Your Needs

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Our Experience

After decades teaching, counseling, and guiding people around the world, we decided to reach out to our local community. At Berkshire Holistic Associates, we offer a variety of educational services right here at our Berkshire location.

Why Us?

Plant-based nutrition and lifestyle have been our passion for over four decades. We have guided thousands of people from all walks of life toward better health through a plant-based approach. We offer "soup to nuts" support-from guidance on selecting the most healthful foods, to suggestions for shopping, cooking, and creating healthful and delicious plant-based meals. Our network includes the region's leading practitioners, including those skilled in acupuncture, movement, and bodywork.

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Whole-Foods, Plant-Based Intervention Study for Diabetes

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Berkshire residents with Type 2 Diabetes will have the opportunity to participate in a Whole Foods, Plant-Based Intervention medical wellness study early next year. 


The disease, which affects almost 12% of Americans, is largely a dietary and lifestyle-mediated disorder linked to the standard American diet high in processed animal foods, sugar and other refined sweeteners, and other ultra-processed foods and beverages. 


Conducted by Berkshire Holistic Associates, a division of the nonprofit Planetary Health, Inc., and approved by the Berkshire Medical Center, the study will assess whether a balanced macrobiotic diet, a popular form of plant-based nutrition, provided to individuals with type 2 diabetes, improves blood glucose control and reduces use of insulin and other hypoglycemic medication. 


Mark Pettus, M.D. of Berkshire Health Systems in Pittsfield will serve as principal investigator and Alex Jack, Edward Esko, and Bettina Zumdick of Berkshire Holistic will serve as co-investigators. Donna Clifford, R.N. will be available as on-call nurse.


The out-patient study would include pre- and post-intervention assessment for 10-15 local, primarily Berkshire County residents with type 2 diabetes referred by their primary physicians in the community. 


The study would extend over a period of 6 weeks and include an educational component consisting of weekly cooking classes and lectures at Eastover Resort & Eco-Village in Lenox. Local and national food companies will be asked to donate whole grains, beans, vegetables, seasonings, condiments, and other specialty items for use in the study and would be provided free to participants to improve compliance with the study’s dietary guidelines.

Donate to the Study

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The study is aimed at the poorer, underserved population in Berkshire county that suffers disproportionately from obesity, diabetes, and other ills. The dietary intervention is the first community project of its kind and, if successful, could serve as a template for integrative medicine in other regions and abroad.


To launch the study, Berkshire Holistic needs to raise about $25,000 to cover the medical tests, cooking classes and theory classes, personal counseling, and a Starter Kit of whole foods for each participant.


Donations are tax deductible and may be made out to our parent nonprofit Planetary Health, Inc. and sent to PO Box 487, Becket MA 01223. Donations may also be made by credit card. Please include card number, expiration date, 3-digit security code, and Zip code. PayPal contributions may be made to: 

Join the Study

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The study will begin as soon as the fundraising campaign reaches its target goal.


If you are interested in participating in the study, please contact Alex Jack at 413-623-0012 or email shenwa@bcn.net.


If you would like to donate natural foods for the cooking classes and Starter Kits for the participants, please contact Alex at the above phone or email.