Monday, December 31, 2007

Raw Goals

I'm so excited about tomorrow! Though I get excited about health in general, raw foods really get me going! Tomorrow I begin an exclusively raw over five month journey (my biggest goal). I love how I feel when I eat raw, I love the freedom I feel, I love the way I have energy and feel so light...I love everything about a raw lifestyle and tomorrow I get to be back in that groove again! Yay!

There are some things in the past that when I've thought myself to be totally raw that I've eaten that aren't raw. Here's a little list I've compiled of things I don't want to allow myself during these next five months (this better keep me accountable):

  • any nuts that have been roasted or flavoured

  • tofu

  • store bought dips and dressings that are just "toxins" and "fat"

Some of my excersise goals would be:

  • jog, take walks, do pilates and stretches, and do the treadmill (at least one of those 5-6 days a week)

And because I'm human, here's my one and only cheat that I'm allowing myself during this time...

  • Booster Juice, I love that place and where I live it's the only real healthy place to get smoothies, so while my family has fast food I can still guzzle up something mostly raw and still healthy. Still, I'm always suggesting they bring in Lara Bars or Smart Monkey for their snack department.

So what about you? What are some of your goals? Today is that day of the year when everyone writes out their hopes for New Year and it's a good idea. Make it fun...get out your pencils and gel pens and put a cozy mug of tea by your side.

Sunday, December 30, 2007

The Rating System and Temptation...(if you must have something not raw)

A practical tip for today... (and no, the above cookies aren't raw)

There are certainly times when those who aren't exclusive raw fooders have some cooked food or some "cheat" snack. And I have nothing against that in the least, (everyone is in their own stage of the journey of health, which should be celebrated not judged), and I do that too...but it's easy once you start "snacking" to eat a bunch of half-rated things and go overboard and your vision for raw and healthy eating becomes a little blurred.

Here's a little system that helps me. If you've decided you're really ok about eating something small that's perhaps not good for you or not raw, wait! and rate it first. From a scale of 1-10, how much do you really want to eat it? If that piece of pull taffy isn't a 9 or a 10 then by all means DON'T eat it!!! Instead of eating that, when you don't need or really want it, go for that piece of gooey brownie you've drooled over all evening that you'd rate a definite 10. Let that be your "cheat" and then go right back to eating your raw and healthy food. Rate'll save you from eating stuff you really don't want and keep things more in control. Better yet...replace those things that you crave cooked with a raw counterpart.

Saturday, December 29, 2007

The Red Carpet for Red Palm Oil

Healthy fats is one of the most awesome things ever...I've been a fanatic of olive oil and coconut oil for a long time...but recently I have got into red palm oil. This stuff is absolutely marvelous! I didn't even know it exsisted until I read Serene Allison's article about it. Soon after, I bought some and I love the flavour of it, it's very different in taste compared to other healthy fats. If you're not exclusively raw you can even use it as a replacement for butter/margarine on toast (if you don't mind the way it dyes everything orange...I think it's fun), frying up your pancakes, or on your baked potatoe or yam. Read up on these super facts about the red palm oil...

RED PALM OIL (info from Serene Allison’s article “I love Fat”)
Red palm oil is the richest natural source of tocotrienols, which are not found in any other vegetable oil. Tocotrienols inhibit the proliferation and growth of human breast cancer cells in culture, therefore; it prohibits cancer and stops the growth of existing cancer cells. Tocotrienols also help prevent skin aging and damage from free radicals. It’s naturally rich in vitamin A for a properly functioning immune system. It contains no cholesterol and actually raises your HDL, your good cholesterol level while simultaneously lowering your LDL, the bad kind. It’s naturally rich in vitamin E for a healthy heart. It actually dissolves dangerous arterial plaque that can lead to a heart attack. It keeps the blood thin and free flowing. The antioxidants in red palm oil act as scavengers, they prevent and eat up the free radicals that lead to our modern diseases-Alzheimer’s, senility, rheumatism, heart attacks, arthritis, asthma, Parkinson’s disease, cancer, spinal muscular atrophy, macular degeneration, and stroke. One tablespoon a day contains 10000 IU of immunity boosting vitamin A, which is enough to eliminate the risk of the common cold and flu by 67 percent. The beautiful red color comes from its richness in tocotrienols, carotenoids, tocoplerols, which are all powerful antioxidants. Not only that it trims body fat by 27 percent. It's because of palmolein, a compound in red palm oil that helps your liver break down sugar for energy before it can be stored as fat. More than that it:
*Reduces risks of diabetes by 58%
*Naturally rich in retinal for great vision
*High in essential fatty acids
*Rich in beta-carotene's – 15 times more than a carrot and 300 times more than tomatoes
*No carbs
*Prevents aging
*Easy to digest and absorb
*Excellent source of energy
*Safe for cooking, the most stable of oils because it’s protected by vitamin E, antioxidants, and has a natural resistance to oxidation and rancidity, even better than coconut oil by longshot.

There's lots of ways to use it in raw foods...turning your scrummy smoothies into orange delights, using it as a buttery spread on your raw crackers and breads (with a sprinkling of sea salt or something), replacing it with any recipe that calls for olive or coconut oil, or freezing some into your raw popsicles...WHATEVER you want. Something I do like to emphasize, is variety...keep on eating your coconut oil, just keep switching things up. Add, replace, switch around...variety is what keeps things interesting. It never ceases to amaze me the incredible things that God has placed on this earth to heal our bodies and to keep us healthy.

Friday, December 28, 2007

Bananas, I've got no bananas...

One of the best staples for the fruit basket has to be bananas. When I was little I disliked bananas with a passion and could eat them only when they were very green. Now I'm a fanatic of them! Not only do they taste good they:

*are full of vitamin B (which calms nerves)
*neutralize over-acidity and lessens irritations by coating the lining of the stomach (which helps control heartburn and risk of ulcers
*keeps our blood sugar levels up
*chock full of fibre
*are known for their potassium (which helps give you more brainpower apparently)
*high in protein
*full of iron, they can stimulate the production of hemoglobin in the blood (which helps those subject to anemia)
*contains vitamin B6, which regulates the blood glucose levels and thus control mood swings
*has tryptophan in it, which is a type of protein that our bodies convert to serotonin which makes you relax and in aiding moods (bananas have been known as the "happy fruit")
*because it's a carbohydrate and has a lot of natural sugars in's very good for high energy activities. It releases it's energy instantly; yet it's substantial enough for a hard 45 minute workout and that's just one banana!
After all that, it just makes you want to go eat a banana! Hence my title, I've got no bananas!
Fortunately, some will be picked up today and besides that, we try to always keep a lot of frozen bananas in our freezers. So I was able to have a gorgeous strawberry/banana shake this morning topped with hempseeds (which are a complete source of protein).
When bananas go on sale it's a good idea to pick lots up, have a banana peeling party, and plop them all in the freezer. Raw eating doesn't have to be expensive.
Here's one of my favorite banana creamy and dreamy.
Simple Vanilla Shake
*four bananas (frozen)
*almond milk (or another favorite nut milk, tho' if need be you can use water)
*one and half teaspoons of pure vanilla
Whizz it all up in a blender, adding the nut milk to the desired consistency. Put in a tall glass, garnish with a strawberry, and drop in a straw. Enjoy!

Thursday, December 27, 2007

A New Year....

My first post...yay! I've been wanting to do a raw blog for a while now, but life is busy (as I'm sure many can attest to).
I'm a gal who loves the Lord Jesus and what He has done for me and I live because and for Him! I’m seeking to live the purest, most beautiful life that I can and I think one of those ways, is eating healthy. I love, love, love raw food and that makes up most of my at-home diet. I love the gorgeous foods that God has given to us and some creatively made, the superfoods, the succulent peach, the creamy avacado…they’re all beautiful gifts from God. I love working with raw food, making creative, scrummy living food. My passions lie with a healthy lifestyle, raw and living food, writing, art, my music (our family sings together) and living a beautiful life.
I've been pretty much totally raw for over thirty days (as well as on and off for the past couple of years), apart from some Christmas festivities. But this next year, starting January 1st I'm going to try to do 100% raw till June, which is about five months (I've already started about a month, but I want to purify my food choices even more). After that, I want to continue eating mostly raw and anything else I eat to be extremely healthy food, raw or not. I think most of our diet should be raw. There's something about starting a new year that inspires one to try very hard to do one's best in the area of goals, so let's use that to our advantage!
I'm not sure how often I'll be able to post, but hopefully regularly. I imagine that during the new year it will be more often...this Christmas holiday tends to be so full of events and family fun.