Sometimes we just need to go somewhere to hit the reset button – whether it’s to renew your body with transformative therapies and life-changing teachings, or to take a break and indulge in some luxurious spa treatments.
HIPPOCRATES HEALTH INSTITUTE
HHI resides in a lush, tropical 50-acre setting in West Palm Beach, Florida. Founded more than fifty years ago by visionary Ann Wigmore, and operating under the guidance of Drs. Brian and Anna Maria Clement since 1980, HHI now welcomes guests from all over the world. They come for nutritional counseling and therapies, some seeking alternative treatments for life-threatening illness, some just in search of better overall health. What they receive is much more.
Dr. Brian Clement, his wife Anna Maria, and their team of health experts personally welcomed us to their Life Change Program, a 3-week experience that left us permanently altered. We went simply for detoxification, but came out with a new perspective on health and life! We were joined by many international guests, some with severe health issues that conventional medicine had failed to cure. Throughout our stay we learned so much about the power of a healthy lifestyle to transform the mind, body, and spirit.
The first experience upon arrival was lunch: a raw vegan buffet filled with every sprout and green thing known to man. There were a few things we were expecting to find that were conspicuously missing from the spread, however. Salt, oil, nuts, fruit, and nightshade vegetables (potatoes, eggplant, tomatoes, and green peppers) were off the menu for our entire stay. Detoxification through food is, in fact, serious business!
Throughout the cafeteria it became easy to spot the newbies by their plates piled high with salad and sprouts. As our digestive systems acclimated to the change, we began to hunger less, taking only what we could reasonably eat in a meal and adding the occasional avocado half, when such a delicacy was allowed. Daily we supplemented our whole foods with nutrient-packed vegetable juice and freshly pressed wheatgrass shots. Eventually, we felt more energy from each meal and learned to appreciate the food we ate.
Every guest at the Institute completes blood work and other medical checkups to determine specific individual goals and areas in need of improvement. Aside from the cutting-edge technology used in personalized treatments, there are group activities to enlighten on subjects integral to a healthy mind-body-spirit connection. Both Drs. Clement, as well as expert instructors provide informative classes in beautiful outdoor settings across the lush grounds on such diverse topics as raw vegan nutrition, lymph massage, mental health, meditation, fitness, debunking food industry myths, suspicious vs. safe supplements, cooking courses, and other topics in their fields of expertise. Dr. Brian remained accessible and happy to answer questions at any time during our stay. He made a point of helping those of us who were new to the Hippocrates-endorsed lifestyle understand the keys to successfully integrating it into our routines.
Although the raw vegan diet may be too extreme for some to carry out regularly, even a 10% difference in lifestyle can prolong life and make positive long-term changes. We spoke with residents of the program who had seen miraculous improvement in their brain cancer and other debilitating diseases. While the Institute does not try to replace conventional medical care or claim to cure all ills, their blend of integrative medicine, raw vegan diet, and healthy lifestyle choices seems to work wonders in many patients’ cases.
At the end of our stay we purchased juicers and supplements, making minor dietary changes that we could consistently practice, and felt the difference in our energy, clarity of mind, and ability to deal with stress. We lost weight along the way, which was an added bonus, although not the goal of our trip. Considering that we have such excellent health to be grateful for, these small steps toward a better lifestyle were worth every challenge and we would repeat the experience in a heartbeat.
CALIFORNIA HEALTH & LONGEVITY INSTITUTE
California Health & Longevity Institute, part of the Four Seasons, offers a customized, science-based program with a complete medical clinic and a full range of diagnostic testing and medical assessments. Tests provide early warning and detection, furnishing the impetus to make lifestyle changes. Personalized programs integrate Western and Eastern medicine. Guests can participate in fitness sessions, spa treatments, healthy-cooking demonstrations, interactive workshops on stress management, and other inner-living topics, as well as the latest technological advances in assessing and changing lifestyle habits.
If you’re in need of a more pampering experience, then Cal-a-Vie should be on your must visit list. Cal-a-Vie is the étoile brillante among luxury health spas, tucked away in a petite paradise forty miles north of San Diego. This Provencal-syle retreat is the ultimate haven for guests to relax, rejuvenate, regroup, and recharge.
With the naturally idyllic climate and landscape of Southern California, and the atmosphere of a quiet, French village, guests feel completely removed from the bustle and demands of the modern world. Cal-a-Vie boasts exquisite cuisine, challenging fitness workouts, and educational seminars with sought-after presenters. But what really sets it apart from other luxury spas is the seamlessly executed experience. With a staff to guest ratio of five to one, guests always have someone nearby to respond to their every need.
Shortly after arrival, guests meet with a member of the scheduling staff to create a program specific to their goals. Choose from breath-taking hikes, over 100 exercise options, body-mind-spirit classes, and restorative skin and body treatments. For guests with a passion for golf, Cal-a-Vie provides an afternoon of enjoyment at the adjacent championship course.
A typical schedule can begin with a walk or hike before breakfast and be full of stimulating or relaxing options until the evening program at 8 pm. Sound too busy? Create a schedule with built-in breaks for meditation and recovery.
Ranked #2 in Conde Nast Reader’s Choice Awards this year, guests at Cal-a-Vie leave feeling relaxed, renewed, and thoroughly indulged. Treat yourself. Don’t you deserve it?
Cal-a-Vie is home to an authentic 400-year-old stone chapel from Dijon, France, perched on the hillside of their private acres. (Pictured at top of post)