About us

LOTUS HEALTH FOUNDATION

OUR VISISION

Lotus Health Foundation provides evidence-based lifestyle medicine education to empower individuals to prevent, manage, and possibly reverse chronic illness. We serve as an advocate for healthy living to reduce the cost of health care and lessen the need for medical interventions.

OUR Mission

LHF is committed to demonstrating an innovative and lasting solution for a common human problem, so our goal is to deliver evidence-based education to maintain the public trust. We believe that all individuals are worthy of respect and dignity regardless of their background or socioeconomic status. LHF will deliver culturally-sensitive and responsive education for all. We will operate with transparency, integrity, and honesty with all providers, clients, and members of the public.

Chronic health conditions account for the majority of the health care costs while greatly impacting the quality of life.

Chronic health conditions, such as heart disease, stroke, cancer, diabetes, obesity, and arthritis account for the majority of the health care costs while greatly impacting the quality of life. According to the Center of Disease Control and Prevention, an estimated 10% of US population has diabetes or prediabetes.  It is the seventh leading cause of death in the US with an annual cost of $500 billion. Similar to other chronic conditions, the costs include the direct care, the complications, the loss of work productivity, and the reduced quality of life.

The current treatments for those chronic conditions have been medications, surgeries, and supportive modalities. They treat the symptoms but not the root causes. It is estimated that 80% of the chronic health conditions are lifestyle related. Much research has shown that adopting a healthy lifestyle is as effective, if not more effective, than current treatment options.  More importantly, adopting a healthy lifestyle can frequently arrest, reduce, or even reverse multiple chronic conditions.

Unfortunately, lifestyle medicine and components of a healthy lifestyle are rarely included in health care programs.  When health care providers are not educated on the concept of lifestyle medicine, or when they are suffering from the chronic conditions, it is hard to image how they can teach the concept of lifestyle medicine to their patients and reverse the epidemic of chronic health conditions. 

The Lotus Health Foundation (LHF) is an emerging nonprofit prepared to undertake this task. Through education, research, and collaborations with community partners, LHF seeks to improve health and wellness of the communities.

MEET OUR TEAM

Mei Liu

MS, MBA, Certified CHIP Facilitator, Founder and President

Mei Liu, founder of Lotus Health Foundation and Chief Financial Officer of Rochester Clinic, earned her master’s degree in Health Care Administration from Des Moines University and an MBA from Drake University.

In her current role, Mei serves as a proponent of lifestyle medicine and considers it to be the most effective way to reduce chronic disease and mitigate a crisis that is impacting all human health, financial markets and the environment.

As a certified facilitator of the Complete Health Improvement Program (CHIP), Mei and the physician team at Rochester Clinic first introduced this lifestyle medicine education program to the Rochester community in 2015. After witnessing a transformation in more than 100 CHIP participants, Mei recognized a need for lifestyle interventions in the community and founded Lotus Health Foundation, the non-profit arm of Rochester Clinic, in 2016.

Mei believes more health care providers should serve as role models and deliver the message about healthy lifestyles and nutrient dense plant-based whole foods. Lifestyle education offers people the opportunity to achieve better health. “If I am able to save one person’s life, that person may turn around to save a community,” Mei said. “Together, we can make this a healthy world for us and for our next generation.”

Mei is actively involved with community outreach and advocates for health equity in underserved neighborhoods. She also works with local businesses and collaborative partners to grow health and wellness initiatives in the region. Outside of work, Mei enjoys cooking and gardening.

Jengyu Lai

DPM

Dr. Jengyu Lai serves as a board member of the Lotus Health Foundation.

Dr. Lai is the Chief Manager of Rochester Clinic and has been providing podiatric and wound care for almost two decades. He earned his DPM (Doctor of Podiatric Medicine) at the College of Podiatric Medicine at Des Moines University in Iowa. After completing a fellowship in Biomechanics Research and a residency in podiatric orthopedics, he accepted a fellowship in Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation at Mayo Clinic in Rochester, MN.

Dr. Lai takes a holistic approach to treating common foot and ankle problems. Since many of those problems are associated with chronic diseases, such as diabetes and obesity, he became interested in lifestyle medicine to treat the root cause instead of managing symptoms with medications.

By serving on the LHF board, Dr. Lai hopes to spread the awareness of the importance of a healthy lifestyle.

Thomas Harman

MD

Originally from Elkhart, Indiana, Dr. Harman holds a medical degree from the Indiana University School of Medicine, and completed his residency at South Bend Memorial Hospital. He was recently a medical director for LiveView Care in Bloomington, MN, and prior to that, director of hospitalist service at the Mayo Clinic Health System in Austin. Dr. Harman is a certified member of the American Board of Family Medicine (ABFM).

An advocate of integrative medicine and telemedicine, Dr. Harman is a strong proponent of relationship-centered care. He believes in developing an understanding of the patient’s culture, beliefs and unique characteristics of mind, body and spirit to help facilitate healing. Dr. Harman also focuses on prevention, as well as maintenance of health, with attention to lifestyle choices, including nutrition, exercise, stress management, and emotional well-being.

When Dr. Harman is not working, he enjoys fly-fishing and cooking healthful food – as he is a firm believer in the oft-quoted maxim: “You are what you eat.”

Malinda Moua

Malinda earned her bachelor’s degree in Accounting from Winona State University and has experience in the banking industry and nonprofit organizations. She was introduced to Lotus Health Foundation in June 2017 and participated and graduated from the Complete Health Improvement Program.  Malinda is a firm believer in in the importance of the foundation’s mission and has seen firsthand how one can improve their health through lifestyle changes. In her free time, she enjoys spending quality time with her spouse and children, exploring photography, and crafting.

Lori Kollasch

Lori Kollasch is a Rochester resident and long-time employee of Cardinal of Minnesota where she currently holds the title of Executive Assistant. In September of 2016, she joined the Cardinal of Minnesota CHIP (Complete Health Improvement Program) group.  She is the chair for many celebratory events for Cardinal, including Client Fall Ball, Cardinal Idol and Wednesday’s on Wellner, to name a few.  She also volunteers for several events benefiting the American Legion Post 92 in Rochester.

Malia Ray

MD

Malia moved to Rochester in 2015 from Cincinnati, where she was a pulmonary/critical care physician. She did her undergraduate training at the University of Louisville, and graduate training at the University of Kentucky College of Medicine. She completed an internal medicine/ pediatrics  residency and pulmonary/critical care fellowship at the University of Cincinnati. Days filled with treating illness and chronic conditions, with their associated complications, resulted in an interest in preventative medicine. This path of learning resulted in implementation of a whole food plant based diet, along with a desire to share knowledge regarding lifestyle choices and their relationship to disease. Lotus Health Foundation serves as a wonderful platform to share her enthusiasm for lifestyle medicine. She can currently be found working at her favorite locally owned running store, TerraLoco, where she organizes their $5 5K’s benefitting charities, and enjoys helping people get started or continue with their favorite form of activity. She loves reading and learning, cooking, and participating in nearly all forms of activity.  

Huey Wang

RN

Huey Wang is a nursing education specialist at Mayo Clinic where she currently supports staff orientation, competency and professional development for three inpatient care areas. She has worked at Mayo for nearly 20 years and has facilitated many departmental-wide programs. Outside of work, Huey enjoys reading, traveling and exercising. She has adopted a plant-based diet since June 2017, after participating in the CHIP program and enhancing her overall health.

Todd Pisarski

CPA, CFE

Todd is a licensed CPA and a certified fraud examiner (CFE); and is currently an auditor with the Office of the Legislative Auditor, State of Minnesota. He holds a bachelor’s degree in Accounting from Bradley University, an MBA from Benedictine College, and master’s in Accounting and Financial Management from Keller Graduate School of Management. Todd is a combat veteran and is retired from the U.S. Army after serving 20 years.

Todd began his involvement with the CHIP program in the fall of 2016.  He completed the program in December 2016 with proven results. He continues to implement and build on lifestyle changes he was introduced to in the program.  Todd has taken whole food, plant-based cooking classes through Rouxbe, and has taken the CHIP refresher program.  Todd is originally from the Chicago area, but has been enjoying the northern Minnesota lakes from an early age.  He relocated to Rochester in 2013, where his fiancé resides.

Andrea Grimm

Andrea Grimm is currently the Assistant Vice President / Branch Manager at Premier Bank Rochester’s North Broadway branch, and she is also the secretary of her family’s lawn care business. Andrea grew up in rural, central Texas and attended the University of Texas at Austin, graduating with her bachelor’s degree in 2012.  After graduating, she moved to Rochester to be near family.  In addition to Andrea’s enthusiasm for healthy lifestyle practices, she is active in the community, her church, and she continues to nurture her passion for the arts.

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