Ning's Story


After facing many health issues in my life and seeing my uncle-in-law die from heart disease, I became inspired to find the root causes of chronic diseases and natural remedies that will treat them.   This led me to traditional systems of Chinese Medicine, which is founded more than 2000 years ago on the principles set forth by Yellow Emperor's Classics of Medicine Book and have since vastly expanded by Shen Nong Herbology and many generations of Chinese Master Herbalists.  I have since learned and am continuing to learn how amazing the human body's healing power really is and how I should respect and harness that natural power to make my body stronger and healthier and defend against chronic illness.   I started Starhaw to share my journey of learning and healing and make all natural remedy products available to help people.  Starhaw stands for Self Teaching All Natural Remedies - Health and Wellness.  This website will be a destination for tips on how to use food and herbs as medicine, how to avoid and remove toxins from the body, the root causes and deficiencies behind illness, all natural remedies and more.  I am a researcher, a self advocate, and advocate for health and wellness of all people.  I am nothing more than seeker of truth, because that is all I have ever wanted.  


Hello beautiful.

My name is Ning Yang, my English name is Jackie, and I created this company after I successfully cured myself of fatty liver disease and returned to normal weight in 7 months  after being overweight for 8 years. My mission is to help others struggling with the same issues. 

I am not a doctor… I am not a nutritionist… and I do not have every answer. But I’ll tell you something wonderful: you do. You have the power to find every solution you are looking for and heal yourself from the inside out. You have to power to learn and build a life of perfect health, starting today.

Since I’ve already told you what I’m not, I would love to share with you who I am, and I am an investigator…. A researcher…. A self-advocate and an advocate for the health and freedom of all human beings. I am nothing more than a seeker of the truth, because that’s all I have ever wanted.

I had a near death experience at the age of three after I contracted Osteomyelitis, known as the infection of the bone marrow.  At the age of three, I fell from the merry-go-around and scraped my knee on my first day at the kindergarten.   Several weeks later, the bacteria that entered my body from the wound began infecting the bone marrow.  I came down with a high fever and excruciating pain in my knee.  My parents took me to Beijing Children's hospital.  The doctors at the hospital misdiagnosed me and did not give me the proper dosage of antibiotics.  A few days later, I was awakened by unbearable pain in my knee in the middle of the night.  This time my parents took me to Ji Shui Tan, the best bone hospital in China, I was assigned two doctors as it was typical practice at the time.  After initial examination and diagnosis of the disease, Dr Nei(Western medicine practitioner) said that my case of Osteomyelitis was very severe and there was zero chance of saving my leg and recommended amputation, while Dr. Liang(Chinese medicine practitioner) however said that with proper combination of Chinese herbal medicine and Western medicine methods, my leg still can be saved.   

After 14 months of intense battle with the disease, the awesome doctors were able to eradicate my Osteomyelitis and saved my leg.  To this day, I am deeply thankful of Dr. Liang!  He changed my life.  And the amazing healing methods of Chinese medicine left a big impression on me.    I also truly believed that when the best practices of Chinese medicine are used together with those of Western medicine, the results can truly be incredible.  I also learned that you cannot take doctor's recommended course of treatment for granted.  I learned from my own experiences and from what my parents later told me that one must look at all available medical information in order to make a fully informed decision.  And we are the ones responsible for our decisions about which course of treatment to take and have to live with the consequences.  That means we should get a second opinion and look at all the possible side effects and check out all the alternative treatment and natural remedies before deciding the best treatment. 

My early experience of a multi-year battle with the vicious osteomyelitis disease taught me an important lesson that I cannot take my health for granted.   Also I have to thank my parents for teaching me a very important concept that I must actively take care of my health because without health, I will have no life.    In 1984, at the age of 12 I began taking Taichi Kung Fu lessons from Mr. Chen in Beijing and studied with him for 3 years.   In 1987 I immigrated to United States, but I continued to study Taichi on my own.   In high school and college, I ran cross country for 3 years.  But after college, I started a busy professional life as an accountant.  Then,  I got married and had a child.  Between frequent overtime schedule at work and family life, I did not exercise as regularly and put a lot of weight.  Finally, at the age of 32, I was diagnosed with fatty liver disease, which I learned was a disease due to excessive buildup of fat in the liver.  Having too much fat in the liver can lead to health problems that lead to diabetes, high blood pressure, heart diseases, and even cancer.  My blood test results show high levels of triglycerides(190) and LDL cholesterol (170).  I was in disbelief.  I do not smoke or drink alcohol, so how could I get fatty liver?  The doctor said that I need to do regular exercise, eat more vegetables and less meat.  I made some adjustments to my diet and begin to do exercise more regularly.  But a year later, cholesterol and triglycerides on my blood test report did come down a little bit but still remained at elevated levels.  My doctor recommended taking lipitor to lower cholesterol, but after I read the long list of side-effects associated with the drug,  which included damages to liver and kidney, unexplained muscle pain, confusion, memory problems, fever unusual tiredness, etc.,  I decided against taking the drug and said to myself there must be a better way.  But, at the time, as a young and busy accountant, I had a difficult time with eating a healthy diet because my work consumed my life.  There was a lot of over-time at work each month.  We often had to stay late and eat junk food based on high sodium, fat and as I later learned full of toxic ingredients that were detrimental to the liver. 

This routine continued for 5 years.  My physical health has deteriorated further.  I was overweight at 200.  I still had fatty liver with elevated levels of LDL cholesterol and triglycerides.  My immune system was weak.  I got sick easily, often felt tired and trapped. 

One day, I learned from my Mom that my uncle-in-law had passed away after suffering from a massive stroke.  I was shocked and very sad.  He was my favorite uncle-in-law!   

I asked myself why did my uncle died so unexpectedly at the age of 68? The following day, I had another annual physical examination and as usual my doctor warned me that because of my high cholesterol, I was in the high risk group for high blood pressure, heart diseases, diabetes, or even cancer.  I was finally awakened by the fact that at this rate, I may one day also get a heart attack or stroke.  The threats of chronic diseases became so real.   I realized that with my medical condition of fatty liver disease, I was also very vulnerable to heart diseases and high blood pressure and even cancer.  My uncle's death inspired me to seek for a healthier lifestyle.  I started searching and reading for more articles on how to live a healthy lifestyle.  

One day I read in a health blog that canola oil, which I had been using for everyday cooking, is very dangerous to health.  I did further research on the internet and was able to confirm that canola oil does have many controversial dangers to health.  They include the following risks 1. kidney and liver problems, 2. life-threatening heart troubles, 3. hypertension and strokes, 4. may retard normal growth, 5. increases intake of unhealthy trans fat, etc.  That list looked dangerous and scary enough to me.  I immediately replaced Canola oil with olive oil or sometimes coconut oil.  Within a couple of weeks, I noticed I lost 4 pounds!

I was hooked. I was so proud of myself for finding out that Canola oil was very bad and harmful to health. I wanted more. I wanted to know WHY I got sick in the first place. I wanted to know how to achieve optimal health.

I began to read several books on Chinese medicine, including the classic Huang Di Nei Jing, and several other books on maintaining health and nutrition.  From Huang DI Nei Jing, I learned that following body's internal clock by getting adequate sleep, stress minimization, healthy balanced diet and adequate exercise are the keys to healthy living. 

Then, one day, I came across Hawthorn berries in my reading of Chinese herbology.  I learned that people have been using Hawthorn berry for centuries to cleanse and detox liver and kidney by removing the fat, cholesterol and toxins.  In addition, Hawthorn increases blood circulation in coronary arteries to prevent congestive heart failure and help fight inflammation.  Considering, majority of my weight resides around the belly and the liver, it seemed like a very promising treatment.  Most importantly, it is an all-natural way without any significant side effects.  I said to myself, "That is exactly what I need to begin using." 

I continued to read and research on Hawthorn.  Along the way, I also learned that there are several ways to take Hawthorn supplements, after reading more research material,  I chose to drink Hawthorn herbal tea everyday religiously(Follow my blogs, I will write a post later on why I choose hawthorn herbal tea over hawthorn extract pill and hawthorn extract liquid).   

Then, shortly, I also learned to combine Goji berries with Hawthorn berries to make a combo tea for greater effects by nourishing the liver and the kidney to boost immune system.  In about 3 months, I noticed that a significant transformation was taking place.  I lost 15 pounds and felt much better and more energetic.  My immune system also became much stronger and was less prune to the flu.  

 The picture on the left is me in 2010, while the picture on the right is me in 2015

Six months later, it was time for my annual physical examination.  On that day, as usual, the doctor ordered blood test, in addition, I asked the doctor to perform an abdominal ultrasound to check on my fatty liver condition.   When the results came out, my doctor could not believe what he saw.  He said that the ultrasound shows I have no fatty liver condition, and the blood tests results show that my LDL cholesterol and triglycerides are all normal and have low risks of heart disease.  "I am envious of your blood test results."  my doctor said to me.  I was elated!   Thanks to hawthorn berries, I was able to cure my chronic disease! According to CNBC, fatty liver disease affects  more than 80 million Americans.( 

A study has found that the annual direct medical cost for people living with fatty liver disease is $1,163 per patient in the United States; total U.S. health care spending on the disease amounts to nearly $103 billion a year. (    However, with the help of 7 months of Hawthorn herbal tea I was able to cure my fatty liver disease and reduce my LDL cholesterol for a total cost of under $200, or just 17% of the average cost per patient.  The problem also is that most of the available prescription drugs only treat symptoms of fatty liver disease, such as high cholesterol, without really treating the root causes of the problem to eradicate it.  At the same time, most fatty liver prescription drugs contain chemicals that are toxic to the kidney.  Therefore, I was very glad that I used an all-natural remedy to treat my fatty liver disease while at the same time avoided causing any harm to my kidney. 

It has been 4 years since I began drinking hawthorn herbal tea and 3 years since my body has returned to proper weight.  I am glad to say that I have successfully kept my weight OFF.  My weight loss efforts did not require a significant adjustment to my diet.    My staple foods include rice(50% of the time), wheat(40%), potato(10%), which are usually served with a balanced mix of fruits, vegetables, meat and fish.  I generally do not eat candy, or anything too sweet and do not drink alcohol except an occasional(perhaps once or twice a month) glass of wine.    

From my weigh loss experience, I came to the realization that the key to optimal health is to cleanse, detox, nourish and protect the liver and the kidney.  With these two vital organs healthy and happy, you can prevent many of the chronic diseases that plaque a significant percentage of the American population.   Since beginning my journey to seek optimal health, I find answers to my questions every single day. Seek and you shall find. I keep getting healthier. I keep getting one step closer to the way my perfect body was designed to thrive. And it’s all because I’m following my passion.  As I continue my journey of researching and learning to seek optimal health, I will share my learning experiences and knowledge in the hope that I can help other people who have been ill and are struggling with no answers.  Without health we have no life.

I started to share Hawthorn herbal tea to accommodate the interests that had developed from people with stories, and fatty liver problems just like mine.  The feedback I was getting made my heart swell with happiness and I was so excited to reach more people with my products and mission. This is what I was put here to do, and it means the world to me to be able to bring the world a product and information that I believe in.

What started as a series of negative experiences in my life, turned into beautiful lessons that have served to benefit others. Everything has happened for a reason and I don’t regret a single moment of the struggles I had to endure to get here. I hope to continue sharing tips and solutions on how to live your healthiest life as long as I’m on this earth, and I look forward to learning from you guys, as I do every single day. Thank you for reading.


Ning (Jackie)





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