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Above pic courtesy of award-winning baking blog With Love and Confection

Those who know me know that I DO NOT COOK. Simply put, as a surgeon I consider using my hands in the kitchen an occupational hazard. That’s my story and I’m sticking to it. But gingerbread–my absolute favorite–is something I would be willing to dabble in, as there are not really any knives involved. However, with everyone at some level of gluten-free these days, is anyone else having anxiety about showing up at a party with your slaved-over baked goods that nobody will eat? Below are some politically–if not “socially” correct–gingerbread options for ringing in the 2015 new year with your gluten-free friends:


1 cup superfine brown rice flour (source link below)

  • 1 cup arrowroot starch
  • 2 teaspoons ground ginger (use 1 teaspoon if you don’t like a heavy ginger taste)
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/2 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1/2 teaspoons guar gum
  • 1/2 cup dark, unsulfered molasses
  • 1/4 cup confectioner’s sugar
  • 1/4 cup softened butter (1/2 stick)
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • Extra rice flour for dusting when rolling and cutting out cookies
  • 1 recipe for Royal Icing
  • 1 recipe for Chocolate Buttercream Frosting
  • Prep Time: 30 minutes
  • Total Time: 30 minutes


Preheat oven to 350 F degrees

Line 2 large baking sheets with parchment paper or lightly grease

  • Sift all dry ingredients together and set aside.
  • Cream butter and sugar, beating on high speed for 3-5 minutes until light and fluffy.
  • Add molasses and vanilla and beat until combined.
  • Slowly add dry, sifted ingredients to butter mixture and beat just until a stiff dough forms.
  • Place dough between 2 sheets of plastic wrap lightly dusted with sweet rice flour. Roll out to 1/8 inch thick.
  • Dip gingerbread cookie cutter in sweet rice flour and cut out gingerbread men. Use a flour-dusted spatula to transfer cookies to baking sheet. If the dough should get too soft while you are working with it, just place it in the freezer for about 5 minutes.
  • Bake for 10 minutes in preheated oven, or until cookies are firm to the touch. Cool and decorate with Royal Icing and Chocolate Buttercream Frosting.

Yield- About 20 medium cookies. Depends on the size of your gingerbread cookie cutter.

Reminder: Always make sure your work surfaces, utensils, pans and tools are free of gluten. Always read product labels. Manufacturers can change product formulations without notice. When in doubt, do not buy or use a product before contacting the manufacturer for verification that the product is free of gluten.

For more great gluten free recipes like this one check out

Another healthy and easy-to-make option is to use gluten-free graham crackers. This is less messy and great for kids:

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More info about this one at:

And for my VERY FAVORITE gingerbread loaf, King Arthur Flour has a great option:

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  • 1 box King Arthur Gluten-Free Yellow Cake Mix
  • 1 tablespoon ground ginger
  • 1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon each ground cloves and ground nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon baking soda
  • 6 tablespoons unsalted butter, at room temperature
  • 1/3 cup molasses
  • 1 tablespoon vinegar
  • 4 large eggs
  • 2/3 cup buttermilk or 1/2 cup liquid whey (the liquid drained from yogurt)


1) Preheat the oven to 350°F. Grease and flour a 9″ x 13″ pan.

2) Whisk together the cake mix, spices, and baking soda.

3) In a separate bowl, beat the butter with half the cake mix/spices.

4) Beat in the molasses, vinegar, and one of the eggs.

5) Add the remaining eggs one at a time, beating well after each addition.

6) Add the buttermilk alternately with the remaining dry mix, one-third of each at a time. Beat until smooth, scraping the bowl after each addition.

7) Pour the batter into the prepared pan.

8) Bake the gingerbread for 40 to 45 minutes, until it’s brown and firm on top. Its internal temperature should be between 210°F and 212°F.

9) Remove the cake from the oven, and cool it on a rack for 15 minutes before slicing.

Yield: one 9″ by 13″ cake.

Happy Baking! Let me know how it goes…;)




Check out my new You Tube video below, basically a recap of my consistently number one post, “Is it possible to have fuller lips without coming out looking like a duck?” (02/02/2012)




Happy Monday!



I know I’ve gotten busy/lazy about posting, but this is one I need to share this month :)

This is a shout-out to all of the incredible women that I have worked with over the past decade to help match their outer beauty to their inner beauty. You all need to know how fortunate I feel to have been a part of your lives.

Thank you for giving me the privilege of being your surgeon. For trusting me, for traveling far distances and fighting the 405 freeway to see me, for waiting in my office (but at least we have those good trashy tabloids, right?), for not giving up even when it seemed like you were never going to “get back to normal.”

We are all familiar with the variables that put us at an increased risk for breast cancer…age, family history, hormone use, smoking…but one thing I’ve learned is that, at the end of the day, it’s kind of a moot point.

Most of the women I’ve helped to treat have had no more risk factors than me. Many have been younger than me. When it comes to breast cancer, there is no “us” and “them.” Every year after my mammogram I say to myself , “Okay, I don’t have breast cancer this year.” Like my patients who had no risk factors, next year could be different.

None of us are “safe” from this crappy disease. But fortunately, with the therapeutic and surgical advances that are being made every year, breast cancer has become something that many women are able to live with and beyond.

Special thanks to those of you who were able to send us recent pics. It’s so nice for others dealing with the same “journey” to see how radiant you all are since you’ve left breast cancer behind.

So check out the cute photos of our “Lipo Queen Family” below :) We love you all!




If you follow her on Facebook, you would know that Rita is always on the go, enjoying herself with friends and family. She’s on a retreat right now with bad reception but still took time to send us a pic! Congratulations Rita! Her son is in his second year of college. :)


 Betty Ann


Congratulations, Betty Ann! You did it! Betty Ann finished her degree, took the LSATS, and is on her way to law school…


vegas 2013 kev car

…but she still makes time for her favorite way to spend the weekend :)




Jenna has a full work and social schedule…


…yet still has time with her family…


…and sometimes even plays a real fairy princess at Disneyland :)




Mary is back in action, and we congratulate not only her but her son who graduated from college and landed a coveted job at one of the biggest talent agencies in L.A.




We’ve haven’t seen Elizabeth in a while because she’s too busy with her work and family. We miss seeing you, but we understand that you and your sisters have better things to do than hang out in our office reading tabloids so…thanks for the pic–you look fabulous!





Jennifer and her boyfriend, who has been around for the duration…the smile says it all. :)




Elegant Irina–back playing violin professionally as soon as we let her






Chardelle, we know you’re busy with work and family–congrats btw! ;)–so thanks for stopping by for a visit for this hot pic with our beloved Ady, office manager/patient care coordinator, and medical assistant extraordinaire




Gigi, (and daughter Jordan) we have no words…you’ve been our family member forever :) and we so appreciate all your support with our Vixen launch and promotion and your comic relief. ;) Congratulations on your new career and all the successes of your beautiful children!





Tracey, you gorgeous girl, now WHAT would we do without YOU? ;) Tracey pays us a visit every once in a while, but usually she’s too busy with her work and family. How is it possible that this hot chick is a Glam-Ma to five???



Marcie is an actress who was on some of your favorite shows back in the '80's--Facts of Life, anyone :) --and is still acting today!

Marcie is an actress who was on some of your favorite shows back in the ’80’s–Facts of Life, anyone? :) –and is still acting today. And as a sit-com veteran, also provides us appropriate comic relief whenever she’s around.




So good to see you smiling, Carmelita! (but then it’s hard not to smile while getting your picture taken with Ryan, right?) :)


Leigh Ann

This post is dedicated to Leigh Ann Zeinali, truly one of the most remarkable women I have ever known. Always with a positive attitude and a sense of humor, always getting everything she could out of life, even though it was all taken from her way too early. She still has an account on facebook where her friends and family can help keep her memory alive. We miss you Leigh Ann and think of you all the time. Thank you so much Gina Lorenzo for sharing with us one of the most awesome BFF pics ever! (though I would have loved to see those cartoons!) ;)







The perfect complement to any outfit–whether it’s post-op, post-baby, post-weight loss, or just post-getting up in the morning…Check it out with the link below:




Hello everyone!

I hate to be one of those people who just sends out other writers’ links. it makes me feel like a cheater.  But between my day job–which is really a “day and night” job and getting the Vixen ready for mass production, I just haven’t had time to write anything myself.

I will eventually. In the meantime, this is an important scientific breakthrough definitely worth checking out:




…celebrating the very FIRST line of shape wear designed by a Board-Certified Beverly Hills female plastic surgeon who specializes in body contouring!

Check it out at:

Thank you so much to everyone who celebrated with us! Especially with L.A. rush hour traffic, parking…we know you fought to get there!

And we totally understand if you couldn’t make it but…anyone feeling any FOMO? ;)



FOMO=Fear Of Missing Out (This slang/acronym may be fashion world-specific)

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If you haven’t heard about it already, you will.

Of course, the tragedy was documented on the internet within seconds. But at first, in all of the links I came across, I saw that the specifics had been tastefully left out, and it didn’t seem like anyone was trying to “uncover the truth.” It wasn’t on the news, and nobody outside of our “Beverly Hills plastic surgery community” seemed to know about it. I truly thought that this was really going to just come and go, to be left alone for the family and the people involved to deal with without scrutiny. When I turned on the radio on my way to the OR the next morning and heard about Justin Bieber’s arrest for a DUI while drag racing, I was sure that the pop culture machine had moved on.

Until I saw this article that one of my colleagues sent me:

At least the article was objective. It just seems unfortunate to me that the Hollywood Reporter felt a need to delve into such a sad, personal tragedy for viewership. The only thing that makes it even Hollywood Reporter-able was their angle about it involving a big “Celebrity Plastic Surgeon. ” The article even went on to mention celebrities who have been rumored to have been his patients. Was that necessary?

Now that the information is out, I’m sure there will be countless commentaries throughout the media where bored, scandal-hungry, reality-TV thriving Americans will give their opinions as to why it happened. There are already insensitive comments circulating on the internet about the surgeon, Beverly Hills, and plastic surgery in general, insinuating that everyone involved was greedy and crazy and did something wrong. Not to mention the tasteless videos posted on You Tube by onlookers who recorded the whole incident on their phones.

I’ve heard that there is already an article out there entitled, “Woman Jumps off Building Unsatisfied With Her Plastic Surgery.” This is ridiculous. It was the morning after her surgery, and there was no way any rational individual would make a decision at that point about their surgical outcome. She most likely hadn’t even seen herself yet. The surgeon and his work are completely unrelated to this woman’s suicide.

I know that this little blog is not a big enough platform to nip the growing snowball of negative editorials that are going to be written about Beverly Hills plastic surgeons and their patients in the bud. All I ask is that everyone who has a chance to read this, please share it with whomever you can. None of the people involved with this devastating event wanted it to happen. The surgeon is actually the best in our field for what he does, and gives impeccable care to all of his patients. The patient had an excellent team of caregivers. Her running onto the roof and jumping was not “a reaction to the medication given to her” as someone commented below the above recent article link. Why she did it? I don’t know—it’s none of my business.

I guess all I want you to take away from this is that the surgeon and his work and her suicide were most likely COMPLETELY UNRELATED incidents. Try to ignore the sensationalized stories that will undoubtedly pop up on the internet or on talk shows in the weeks to come, and remember that NOBODY has the facts.




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