A Remarkable Recovery

December 22, 2014
Ann Louise Gittleman, PhD, CNS

Ann Louise Gittleman, PhD, CNS

Award-winning nutritionist and New York Times bestselling author.

A Dose of Inspiration for the Season of Giving

Many of us can appreciate the age old axiom, “it’s better to give than receive.”  After all, giving back is one of the best ways to express gratitude for our many blessings.

The urge to give is especially strong this time of year as so many of us open our hearts to charitable causes, visit children’s hospitals, support the troops and stock up the food banks.

But, sometimes the urge to express gratitude is all-consuming—when you’re been given a gift of a miraculous healing, a gift so extraordinary that you feel overwhelmingly inspired to dedicate your life to paying it forward.

That was exactly the case when UNI KEY Health founder James Templeton was faced with, and ultimately overcame, a potentially terminal cancer diagnosis.

Thankfully, he won back the gift of life with unbridled determination, a never-say-die attitude and lots of true grit faith.

As a result of his remarkable recovery, he’s dedicated the last 30 years of his life to helping others take back control of their own health and overcome the most serious of life’s challenges.

James’ story was first published in the book, Cancer-Free: 30 Who Triumphed over Cancer Naturally.

Here, in his own words, is a real-life testimony to the power of the human spirit:

In November 1985, at the age of thirty-two, my life in Huntsville, Texas came to a sudden halt. I was diagnosed with Stage IV melanoma cancer on my lower right back. I went through the usual medical treatment of surgical removal followed by regular checkups. I was told not to worry.

It’s easy for someone else to say don’t worry. Well, I began planning the end of my life, knowing Stage IV cancer is almost always fatal. I became a person living in fear.

Before I could finalize my plans, my marriage came to an end. I would lose the much needed support of my wife of ten years and my two-year old daughter. I was forced to leave my family and business. I soon became involved in a Dallas business. So I moved to Dallas.

I thought a new business would get the cancer and family problems off my mind. Perhaps even a miracle would take place driving the cancer out of my body.

Six months later my doctor found lumps in my groin area. He told me surgery was needed to find out what the lumps were. I went ahead with the surgery.

The next day after the surgery, I found out that the cancer had spread into my lymph system. The doctor removed all the major lymph nodes in the area. He told me I needed eighty treatments of chemotherapy. I would have to stay in the hospital five days for each five treatments every two months.

Each treatment lasted all day. I was also told I might need more surgery from time to time, followed by radiation treatments.

“I Knew Inside Myself That There Had to Be A Better Way.”

Basically, I was not given much hope, only a 20 percent chance of survival with the treatments and no hope without them. I would also go through a lot of expense for these services. I began to think that I was surely a goner. I knew inside myself that there had to be a better way.

Then, all of a sudden, two days after surgery, my life changed again. It all started when an old college friend came to the hospital to visit me. He brought me a magazine article on the story of a man who recovered from cancer through the use of macrobiotics.

The man’s name was Dirk Benedict, a well known actor who appeared in ‘The A-Team’ & ‘Battlestar Galactica.’

“A new hope for life, something I was drastically in need of…”

Something instantly changed inside of me. I would never be the same person again. I knew I had found a new hope for life, something I was drastically in need of.

The next day I asked a member of my medical staff if he had heard of macrobiotics. He paused for a moment and went to close the door to my room. He then said, “Yes I have. But please promise me you will not mention our conversation to anyone.” I said O.K.

He began to tell me that he thought macrobiotics would work for some people. He said a person would have to be of the right character.

Because of my willingness to think independently and my determination to live, he thought macrobiotics would work for me. He then recommended some books for me to read. I had a friend go out immediately and purchase the books. The books were ‘Recalled By Life’ by Anthony Sattilaro, M.D., and ‘Confessions of a Kamikaze Cowboy’ by Dirk Benedict.

“I had my work cut out for me.”

After three weeks in the hospital, I went to my mother’s until I could go back to Dallas. After reading the books and returning to Dallas, I had my work cut out for me. I could barely get around, much less do all the things I would have to begin doing to get well.

Because of my serious condition, I had to jump right in to the macrobiotic diet. I would get up in the morning by 4:30, so I could fix my breakfast and do my stretching exercises, then go to work for about ten hours a day.

I would force myself to walk after work for at least two miles. I would then go home and cook and chew my food at least 100 times a mouthful.

I wanted to do everything right. I would go to bed usually around 11:00 P.M. which would give me three hours after eating before bedtime.

On top of all this I would have to spend four hours a day for special treatments I needed, to help me get over the surgery. This took about five months.

After a few weeks on the macrobiotic diet, I started feeling the positive effects. My energy started going up and up. I soon started running and bicycling. Three months after surgery I managed to run over ten miles on some days.

“I wanted to beat the cancer and would do whatever it took…”

I wanted to beat the cancer and would do whatever it took to do so. Although I did take ten chemotherapy treatments, which was one of the worst experiences I have ever gone through, I soon totally walked away from all doctors and modern medicine. I decided I would take care of myself. I would take responsibility for my own life.

For the first four months I learned everything about macrobiotics from books I would read. I developed the attitude that if macrobiotics did not work for me it would not work for anyone.

I became very strong from my cooking and my new way of life. I would cut no corners.

After about five months of my new life I decided to go to Becket, Massachusetts to attend a Macrobiotic Residential Seminar sponsored by the Kushi Institute.

This was one of the greatest weeks of my life. It was like one big family there. I learned more in one week than I had in the past five months. I also met with a macrobiotic teacher and this helped me make more adjustments in my road to recovery.

“A year later, there were no signs of cancer.”

Following my visit, I decided to leave Dallas and move to Becket to work and live. A year later, there were no signs of the cancer.

Four years after being diagnosed with Stage IV melanoma, and receiving a negative prognosis for recovery, I felt stronger and better than I ever had in my life.

Twenty-nine years later, I am stronger than ever and have taken advantage of this second lease on life by dedicating the last 23 years to helping others achieve their health goals through nutritional education, and the development of the highest quality nutritional supplements, all natural personal care products, environmental protection and self-health testing.

Your Body Knows Best

I was so moved by James’ remarkable recovery that I featured his story in my own book ‘Your Body Knows Best‘ in which James is also a co-author. For over 20 years, I’ve been proud to represent Uni Key Health Systems as a spokesperson.

If you are as impressed by James’ courage and true grit in the face of a death sentence, please visit www.unikeyhealth.com and take a peek at the life-changing products James has created.

You can also “LIKE” UNI KEY on Facebook and share the page with all your friends and associates.

In closing, let me take this personal opportunity to thank all of you for your amazing support, feedback and commitment in 2014.

Merry Christmas

Related Articles and Podcasts

Ann Louise Gittleman, PhD, CNS, is an award-winning New York Times bestselling author of more than thirty books including The Fat Flush Plan series and her latest book, Radical Metabolism. She’s been rewriting the rules of nutrition for more than 40 years and is internationally recognized as a pioneer in the field of diet, detox and women’s health issues. 

For a FREE daily dose of tips and strategies for maintaining healthy weight, conquering insomnia, and much more…check out my Radical Health Tips.

I’d like to meet and greet you on my Facebook groups, so won’t you check us out at the Radical Metabolism RevolutionFat Flush Nation, or my Inner Circle!


  1. cheryl

    I love this! Such an inspiration!!!

  2. Kathleen

    What an inspiration you are, James! My eyes fill reading your story. What great faith and courage you have —may you be forever filled with Blessings! Merry Christmas, James, and may the Christ Child continue to be your guide! This has to be the most inspirational story I have ever heard.

  3. John

    What a great story to help and inspire others.

  4. Sandra

    James, THANK YOU for sharing your story! I am so grateful that you are ALIVE and WELL, and using all that you have been through to help so many others in the field of natural healing. What a remarkable testimony of the goodness of God and your tenacious grit. I wish you and Ann Louise a wonderful, prosperous, and healthy New Year, and continued influence in touching others’ lives!

  5. Liz

    Thank you for sharing the incredible journey James has taken. What a stirring example of taking an extreme hardship and turning it into a life passionately dedicated to helping other people take charge of their health.

  6. Ann Louise

    Thank you for all your heartwarming comments which I am forwarding to James 🙂

  7. Chris

    What an inspiring story to ring in the holidays and the new year! Thank goodness James is still with us and sharing the way to better health.

  8. Pauline Schmitt

    AnnLouise, I had health problems relating directly to chronic inflammation. When Western medicine failed me I turned to macrobiotics under the loving guidance of Michael Rossoff, of Ashville, NC. Like your James and Lance Armstrong, I experienced a life-changing return to health and then some by following macrobiotics!
    Thank you for sharing his story and for your commitment to getting information on health and nutrition out to us in a language I can understand. You are a gift. Happy holidays to you.

  9. Karen

    What a wonderful story James. Thank you for sharing it with us and for dedicating your life to helping others. What a blessing!

  10. Dr. Roy Speiser

    James is a unique accomplished individual who has enriched the lives of thousands of people. His life changing health crisis has transformed him and as a result he has developed many healing formulas and protocols with his world renowned nutritional expert Dr. Ann Louise Gittleman.
    I have known them both for over 20 years and am blessed to have connected with them both professionally and personally. The world is a better place because of their dedication to everyone’s health.
    Dr. Roy Speiser

  11. Teresa Pfaff

    What a Remarkable and Inspiring story! I’ve been privileged to see how this man truly lives what he believes. His vitality and love for life is contagious – especially if you benefit from taking Unikey’s excellent nutrional supplements as well. Thank you, James, for all you do to help others like me gain a healthier life. Hope comes along with every product you’ve crafted!

  12. Margo Parker

    Dear James – you are an inspiration to us all! Wishing you even more health and well-being for 2015!


Submit a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This