Tag Archives: Energy

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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In RAW fashion…

So sorry for the lapse in time since I last posted as I was on vacation in Florida…GO GAMECOCKS!

UPDATE on my GO RAW journey..

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While vacationing in Florida, I utilized the first few days as a transition period and decided to go 80% RAW in order to properly prepare myself for the RAWesome 31 day trial ahead of me (the transition period is a great way to ease yourself into the process)!  I am now on Day 4 of going 100% RAW and I must say that I am loving it so far!  While the majority of my caloric intake has been coming from juicing and green smoothies, I have also been eating a rainbow of fresh fruits and vegetables!  It continues to amaze me how much fresh produce I can eat in a day without feeling that yucky full feeling that you get from the Standard American Diet which is undeniably a S.A.D one!

Evolution of Man with the S.A.D lifestyle (Don't let this be you)

My menu just the other day consisted of fresh orange juice (with the juice from 5 oranges) and TWO Green Juices (spinach,  kale, 3 granny smith apples, 1 cucumber, 4 large carrots). I also managed to eat 3 tomatoes, 12 oz. frozen blueberries, 6 oz raw snap peas, 2 oranges, 1 cucumber, a handful of raw nuts, a WHOLE pineapple, and SIX bananas (despite common belief, eating bananas will not make you fat).  I wish I had a photo of how much produce I eat in a day because it is pretty RAWmazing (I’ll work on getting one for ya). I already feel “lighter” than I did prior to this experience!

Many raw foodists use dehydrators to widen their array of foods to consume. While I think it could be interesting to try this out on occasion, taking the water content out of foods does not seem like something I want to be doing on a daily basis. I do think the dehydrator would be a must if you decide to eat raw for life. I do plan to start getting more creative with RAW recipes now that I am back from vacation so I will keep you updated on those!

My best advice to going raw is  make sure you are eating enough fruits and vegetables otherwise you might start feeling fatigued! Many times it scares us to EAT MORE (I have been guilty of this many times before).  But our bodies need calories and when you are filling them with 100% nutrition then it becomes almost impossible for us to eat too much fresh produce! I have finally come to realize that restricting calories actually makes you gain weight (which my old self never could grasp). You will also be less tempted to veer off the raw course if you feel satiated from eating a large amount of fresh fruits and vegetables. Make sure you are getting the rainbow effect going on when you are eating fresh produce to ensure a multitude of vitamins and nutrients!

I can already start to see why there are so many advocates of going raw! I believe this experience will enhance my physical self as well as my spiritual self! I am ecstatic to see where this path leads me! I will continue to keep you updated on my GO RAW journey and if you have any questions please ask away!

Cheers to a HAPPY and HEALTHY New Year!!

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Ring in the New Year Going RAW!

As a fresh and healthy start to the new year I have decided to EAT RAW for 31 days! When you first hear RAW FOOD, you initially think of raw eggs, raw fish, raw meats, sushi, etc..but what about raw fruits and vegetables?!


So What is Raw Foodism?

Raw Foodism is the practice of consuming only UNCOOKED, UNPROCESSED, typically ORGANIC foods.  While there are many derivations of what foods are included in this practice, I’m going to stick with raw fruits, vegetables, nuts, and seeds.  Organic herbs and spices will also be included. So this means I will only be eating raw (uncooked) fruits, vegetables, nuts, and seeds for 31 days!

I know what you’re thinking! Why would I do such a thing?

There is research to support this practice. By the 1930s, it had become a universal knowledge in the medical field that “digestive leukocytosis” occured in the human body after eating a cooked meal of food. This means that the white blood cell count would significantly rise after eating a cooked meal, as if the body was being attacked by a foreign invader like it does with a virus or bacteria. So in 1930, Dr. Kouchakoff decided to test this theory with raw uncooked, unprocessed foods.

Kouchakoff’s team analyzed the blood levels of test subjects who had eaten many different types of food and without fail found that when they consumed raw food, or food that was not refined, there was no reaction in the blood. The body regarded these foods to be non-threatening. On the other hand, the response was undoubtedly different for cooked foods. The body treated these foods just as it would  to protect itself from a foreign pathogen, increasing white blood cells. He found the worst offenders to be foods that were refined, homogonized, pasteurized, preserved, and microwaved. These cooking techniques caused severe digestive leukocytosis in the blood.

Raw foodists also believe that when you cook foods above 115 degrees Fahrenheit, vital enzymes and nutrients are destroyed, causing more harm to the body than good. They claim that the benefits to eating raw include weight loss, improved digestion, more energy, clear skin, and improved overall health. So I thought I would test this theory and see what all the hype is about by giving it at least a 31 day trial! I’ll be keeping you up to date along the way on my thoughts and feelings throughout the experience!

I’m sure you are asking “But where will you get protein?”

Most green vegetables (especially the dark leafy ones) contain more protein per calorie than meat! I will be eating a TON of dark leafy greens on a daily basis as well as some nuts and seeds which are packed with protein! I will be eating more fruits and vegetables in one day than the majority of Americans eat in one month!

So who’s with me?? Who wants to test this theory and see just how great eating these raw foods for 31 days will make us feel? Are you up for the challenge?

I think it will be RAWmazing! Bring it on 2012 🙂

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Helpful Hint to Keeping Fit and Boosting Energy

What is the first thing you should do when you wake up? Eat Breakfast? Drink some coffee?

Nope! You should be drinking ONE to TWO liters of WATER!

First thing in the morning is the prime time for your body to more readily flush out toxins. So instead of reaching for more toxins in the morning such as that coffee, hot chocolate, or latte…grab the WATER and say bye bye toxins! Renowned nutritionist David Wolfe is a big advocate of this and once you make a habit of it, you will know why!

If you aren’t a big water drinker already, then start out with a smaller amount and gradually work your way up to 2 liters. Before you know it you’ll be waking up craving water and will be full of energy!

Also, drink as little water/liquid DURING meals as possible. Why you ask?  Drinking liquids with meals dilutes gastric acid in the stomach, slowing down digestion. Digestive enzymes are diluted causing an improper breakdown of carbohydrates, proteins, and fats. Proper digestion is a key proponent in weight loss.  Also drinking a large amount of liquids with meals causes bloating…which no one likes!

Ideally if you’re going to drink a large amount of liquid (hopefully water) you want to do it 30 minutes before or after the meal.

So HYDRATE HYDRATE HYDRATE! Just not during meals!

I challenge you to drink ONE to TWO liters of water when you wake up everyday this week and see how you feel! Happy drinking!

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GO GREEN…SMOOTHIES!!

We’re all very familiar with the term Go Green…but how many of us are familiar with ingesting GREENS?

If you want a mega boost of nutrition, then a green smoothie is just what you need!  Even substituting one of these for your breakfast can go a long way for your health! I know what you’re thinking, how can something that looks like that taste good?? Well trust me, it’s just like drinking a fruit smoothie!  And hey…you can’t judge a book by its cover now can you.

My favorite combination is using A LOT of spinach and kale along with a banana, frozen strawberries and blueberries and a little bit of filtered water and ice (all organic of course)

Reasons to GO GREEN…SMOOTHIES:

  •  NUTRIENT DENSE.  Dark green leafy vegetables are nutritional powerhouses. One serving typically has more Vitamin K, C, and A than we need in an entire day. They also have high amounts of phytonutrients and antioxidant properties which prevent cancer, disease, aging, etc. And let’s just say that for the amount of fruits and vegetables you can put into ONE smoothie…well, you’d be eating that same amount of fruits and vegetables for a long time!
  • OPTIMAL ABSORPTION OF NUTRIENTS. For optimal absorption of the nutrients in leafy greens their cell walls must be broken down. According to Victoria Boutenko, a pioneer in the green smoothie movement, in order to rupture the cell walls of dark leafy greens we literally have to chew them into a creamy consistency before we swallow….Is that even possible?? I think I will stick with the high tech blender! So that’s optimal absorption of nutrients going directly into our cells!
  • GREAT SOURCE OF FIBER. Fiber is an essential part of  our diet and what’s a better way than getting it from fresh leafy greens?  This is key for our digestive tract!
  • YUM FACTOR. I know many of you do not believe me when i say these things taste great but if I can make these for kids and they love them…then you should too!  We all know that kids hate their veggies!  (like in this commercial. Check out the dirty socks kid! LOVE HIM  All you have to do is add in your favorite tasting fruits..and that’s what it will taste like!!
  • QUICK AND EASY. They only take 5 minutes to make..max!
  • THEY FILL YOU UP!  That’s right, drink one of these for breakfast and you won’t be hungry until lunch!

So think about the amount of fruits and vegetables you typically get in a day. Now think of how much you can add to that just by drinking ONE smoothie or perhaps several in a day! ( I like to make them as a snack too or even a meal replacement!)

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