Category Archives: GO RAW

10 Day Juice Fast/Cleanse

Juice fasting.

I know, when you hear the word “fasting” negative thoughts such as starvation and impossible come to mind. But I’m talking about a JUICE fast. Juice fasting is about obtaining optimal health, boosting nutrition, detoxing, increasing energy, clearing your mind, and freeing yourself of stress and toxins. Juice fasting rejuvenates your body from the inside out. It completely detoxifies your body at the cellular and metabolic level. Think about how many times you eat during a day (I’m typically snacking every 3 hours), now imagine how much energy and time your body utilizes to digest that food. When you give your digestive tract a rest by only consuming fresh fruit and vegetable juices packed with nutrients and live enzymes, your body has massive amounts of energy to focus on detoxifying and healing itself. The body has an innate ability to heal itself, we just have to allow it to do so. For those of you that may not know, a juice fast consists of drinking only fresh fruit and vegetable juices (notably green juices) and water for a set period of time (typically lasting 3-10 days, but many people have gone much longer).

Completing a juice cleanse will provide you with a wide array of health benefits, including:
-More energy
-Toxin removal
-Increases mental clarity
-Regulates digestive system
-Aids in Weight loss
-Improves sleep patterns
-Glowing complexion/clearer skin
-Stops food addictions and cravings
-Improves immune function

I am currently on day five of a ten day juice cleanse. I embarked on a juice fast over a year ago and feel it’s time to conquer another one. I did not blog about the first one so this time I figured I could give you guys some insight into my 10 day juice fast/cleanse. For me, juice fasting is about improving my mental, physical, and spiritual state. I am so passionate about incorporating fresh fruit and vegetable juices into your life. The rewards and benefits are undeniable. I drink at least one or two per day as it is so drinking only juice for 10 days actually excites me. I know it may seem like an impossible task to not chew anything for 10 days, but trust me you can do it! It is a difficult task, but a doable one.

The juice I made for the first few days:
juice fast

Here’s some insight into my fast thus far:

Day 1:

Today I was super stoked about starting the fast so it was easier than I thought. I have a cold press juicer and made enough juices to last me for the first three days which made it super convenient for me to grab a juice when I needed one. I’m drinking at least five- 16 oz. juices a day. Days 1-3 are typically the worst and hardest days of the fast. If you can get through those, the following days should get easier as your body welcomes the fast. I walked outside for an hour today. Mild exercise is okay, but anything too strenuous would be an overload. Walking outdoors is my  tranquil, spiritual, “me” time which I love and need. It allows me to reflect on things, clear my head, and focus on what is important. Overall, today was a great first day of fasting!

Day 2:

My energy level was a bit low today. I had a few headaches today, which is normal. Fatigue, irritability, insomnia, hunger pangs, and headaches are common in the first few days as the detoxification process begins and your body weans itself off food cravings and addictions. I craved food a few times throughout the day but drank tons of water anytime this occurred which helped! I did get a burst of energy late at night. Overall, I’d say today was a bit rough but not too horrible.

Day 3:

Today was much like day 2, still craved food a few times and had a headache at one point. My energy level seems to be higher today than it was yesterday. I have found that I have highs and lows when it comes to my energy level. Sometimes I feel run down and then there are times I will get random spurts of energy where I feel like Wonder Woman! I also felt a bit achy today.

photo (4)

Day 4:

I didn’t really think about food at all today. I almost have the mentality of being “too good” for food which helps in this process haha. I went for a walk in the morning and at night and found my energy level was quite high today. The fast has definitely become much easier today. I feel like I’m on top of the world and am excited about completing the ten days (crazy, right?!)

Day 5:

The past two days I have woken up at 5am on the dot without an alarm aka my sleep patterns are starting to regulate themselves and I sleep like a baby at night. My skin is clearing up and I feel super light and full of energy. Added bonus, I’m down five pounds. I have noticed an increase in mental clarity as well. I’d say the hardest part thus far is the cold weather. I allow myself a hot non-caffeinated herbal tea from time to time (which is allowed on a fast) to warm me up. I am pumped to see where the next five days take me and feel so much better than I did before starting this fast. Don’t let me fool you though, it does take mad willpower to stick to this. Anything is possible if you put your mind to it.

Tips for Fasting/Cleansing:

-Drink at least 5 juices per day
-Drink TONS of water to help flush out toxins
-Experiment with juice recipes and find ones that you love. Creating a variety of tasty ones will make it much more appealing to drink.
-Don’t over exert yourself, especially the first few days when your energy level is low
-Know that symptoms of fatigue, irritability, headache, joint aches, hunger pangs, food cravings, and insomnia are normal during the first several days and should not be an excuse to give up.
-Drink non-caffeinated herbal teas from time to time to add some heat to your week
-Devote some time to yourself, whether it be through meditation, walking, prayer, etc.
-The first 3 days are rough…don’t let them get you down.
-Avoid watching TV- food commercials are torturous and hey, who needs TV anyways?!
-Get a juice fasting partner- It’s so much easier to complete with someone who is in the same boat as you and that provides encouragement.
-Make enough juices to last you several days for added convenience.
-If you need some juice recipes, I have lots on my blog!

I’ll keep you guys updated on my 10 day fast. I am most worried about Thanksgiving, Yes I will be that crazy girl juicing on Thanksgiving. I didn’t think that one through, but I know I can do it! If you have any questions about juice fasting, please feel free to ask!

**If you live in the Greenville, SC area and would like to order a cold-pressed juice cleanse, check out www.kukajuice.com

Have any of you completed a juice fast? What are your thoughts or experiences with juice fasting?

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Green Juice!

Today’s green juice recipe is Kale-Spinach-Apple-Cucumber-Lemon!
-4 large handfuls organic spinach
-1 bunch organic kale
-1/2 organic cucumber
-1/2 organic lemon
Keep on juicing!

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Eat your Greens, Change your Genes.

**(Check out this article from ScienceDaily…just one more reason to drink your green juices and smoothies!)

ScienceDaily  — A long-held mantra suggests that you can’t change your family, the genes they pass on, or the effect of these genes. Now, an international team of scientists, led by researchers at McMaster and McGill universities, is attacking that belief.


The researchers discovered the gene that is the strongest marker for heart disease can actually be modified by generous amounts of fruit and raw vegetables. The results of their study are published in the current issue of the journal PLoS Medicine.

“We know that 9p21 genetic variants increase the risk of heart disease for those that carry it,” said Dr. Jamie Engert, joint principal investigator of the study, who is a researcher in cardiovascular diseases at the Research Institute of the McGill University Health Centre (RI-MUHC) and associate member in the Department of Human Genetics at McGill University. “But it was a surprise to find that a healthy diet could significantly weaken its effect.”

The research, which represents one of the largest gene-diet interaction studies ever conducted on cardiovascular disease, involved the analysis of more than 27,000 individuals from five ethnicities — European, South Asian, Chinese, Latin American and Arab — and the effect that their diets had on the effect of the 9p21 gene. The results suggest that individuals with the high risk genotype who consumed a prudent diet, composed mainly of raw vegetables, fruits and berries, had a similar risk of heart attack to those with the low risk genotype.

“We observed that the effect of a high-risk genotype can be mitigated by consuming a diet high in fruits and vegetables,” said Sonia Anand, joint principal investigator of the study, and a researcher at the Population Health Research Institute and a professor of medicine and epidemiology at the Michael G. DeGroote School of Medicine at McMaster University. “Our results support the public health recommendation to consume more than five servings of fruits or vegetables as a way to promote good health.”

“Our research suggests there may be an important interplay between genes and diet in cardiovascular disease,” says the study’s lead author Dr. Ron Do, who conducted this research as part of his PhD at McGill and is now based at the Center for Human Genetics Research at the Massachusetts General Hospital, Boston, Massachusetts. “Future research is necessary to understand the mechanism of this interaction, which will shed light on the underlying metabolic processes that the 9p21 gene is involved in.”

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GO RAW CHALLENGE

It’s official! I have completed the 31 day- GO RAW challenge (eating only raw fruits, vegetables, nuts and seeds) and I loved it! I’m not gonna lie, there were a few times that I would have killed for a bowl of hot soup but I stayed strong and did not let my temptations get the best of me! I would definitely recommend that everyone at least try to be conscious of your food choices and make an effort to eat raw every chance you get! While I would love to say that I am going to be 100% raw for the rest of my life, I must be realistic and say that from now on I will, without a doubt, eat raw as much as possible (80% raw sounds good right?)!  The raw food challenge made me appreciate the things that GOD created for us! This experience made me reach outside of my comfort zone and try new fruits and veggies! I now have a greater appreciation for the distinct flavors and varieties of plants that are readily available for us to consume! It’s amazing how quick your taste buds can change to crave fruits and vegetables instead of chocolate and sweets! I now feel lighter, have a greater sense of clarity, improved digestion, more energy, and a whole new appreciation for foods in their raw forms! Eating living, RAW foods just makes you feel ALIVE (makes sense right?)! I am now aware that foods DO NOT need to be cooked to taste good. To me, there’s nothing better than biting into a huge piece of juicy pineapple! Throughout the process I drank a ton of juices and smoothies, made creative salads using fruit juices as “dressing”, made vegetable noodles, snacked on a variety of fruits and vegetables, made “desserts” with things such as crushed apples and cinnamon, etc.  While most raw foodists create complicated recipes and dehydrate things for hours to come up with the raw version of our typical cooked recipes, I believe it is far better to just stick with the basics… eating the fruits and vegetables in their simple states! It’s by far less work and is much more satiating! GO RAW and feel RENEWED! Are you up for the challenge?

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Healthy Dessert Recipe: “Chocolatey Chews”

This recipe is similar to the Superfood energy bar recipe, but this one is only 3 ingredients so it’s QUICK AND EASY!

What you need:

  • 1 1/2-2  cups raw cashews
  • 12 organic Medjool dates
  • 2 Tbsp. Raw cacao powder (can add more to make it more chocolatey)

First, blend cashews into a fine powder, then add dates and cacao powder. Blend until thoroughly  mixed and everything is sticking together nicely! Roll into balls and serve! Or you can put them in the refrigerator depending on your preference! For all of you coconut-aholics out there, you can also add 1 cup coconut to this recipe! Who would’ve thought chocolate and healthy could be in the same sentence?! Enjoy!

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Samantha’s SUPERFOOD Energy Bars

Calling ALL coconut lovers! Not only are these bars packed with nutrients, they also taste like candy (they’re RAW, VEGAN, & have Green SUPERFOOD)! They also have Raw cacao, which has one of the highest amounts of antioxidants. Healthy AND taste like dessert?! Everyone must try these! 🙂

What you need: (Makes about 10-12 bars)

1/2 cup raw almonds (or you can try raw hazelnuts)

3/4 cup raw cashews

1/3 cup Flax seeds

12-15 organic Medjool dates(pitted)

1 cup organic unsweetened shredded coconut

1 T raw Cacao powder

3 T organic, unrefined Coconut oil

1 t. raw honey (optional)

1 indiv. packet of raw cacao Green Superfood powder (about 3/4 T)

First, Grind the nuts in a blender. Then, add half of the Medjool dates and the Coconut oil and blend. Next, add the rest of the ingredients and the remainder of the dates.  Blend until well mixed and it becomes nice and gooey! Once everything is sticking together well, press the batter into a small glass baking dish using your fingers. Place in refrigerator for atleast 30 min! I like to keep them in there because I think they taste better cold!  These are great for when you need to grab something and go! Hope you enjoy!!

P.S. Today is DAY 15 of GOING RAW and I feel fantastic! I def. think I can do this for longer than 31 days! I’m waiting until the end of the trial run to weigh myself but I feel lighter, have increased energy, and am just loving this whole process!

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Zucchini Pasta with Raw Marinara Sauce

Tomorrow will be DAY 10 of going 100% RAW! This experience has been so much easier than I thought! As I said before, I am trying to incorporate creative recipe ideas on this GO RAW journey so here goes the first: Zucchini Pasta with Raw Marinara Sauce. I have never been a huge “pasta person” because I hate the full feeling I always have afterwards but this recipe left me feeling nourished and satisfied!

First, I used a cheese grater to grate the zucchini into angel hair “noodles.” One zucchini makes enough for about one person. Also, it is best to keep your produce unrefrigerated for this recipe so it is not cold to taste.

Now for the Raw Sun-dried Tomato Marinara Sauce (1 serving):

  • 3 cups tomatoes, chopped
  • 1/2 clove garlic
  • 1/2 cup fresh basil leaves loosely packed
  • 1/4 cup finely chopped onion
  • 1 bell pepper
  • 1-2 Medjool date, pitted (optional)
  • 1 teaspoon oregano
  • 1/2 teaspoon rosemary, fresh or dried
  • 3 tablespoons sun-dried tomatoes
  • 1/4 cup cold pressed olive oil (I left this one out)
Instructions:
  • Blend everything except sun-dried tomatoes until smooth. Add the sun-dried tomatoes last and blend again. The sun-dried tomatoes will absorb excess moisture and thicken the sauce. It takes some trial and error to get the right consistency on this one!

**Even if you are not going RAW per say, you can always try using these fresh zucchini noodles instead of your typical white flour noodle and using your own marinara sauce! I was pleasantly surprised by how good the zucchini noodles tasted! You can even grate up some fresh yellow summer squash and carrots to add into this recipe for a tasty trio of “noodles.”

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