Sunday, March 15, 2009

Dr. Craig Sommers's Lecture Video Part 2: Protein

Protein always seems to be of concern when anyone finds out a person is vegetarian, vegan, and/raw raw, or when changing to a meat-free diet. Watch the video below on the next part of Dr. Sommers's lecture at Almond Blossom Cafe covering the topic of protein. I certainly learned some new things even though I've been studying this on and off for a few years now.

It's a shame that mainstream media has hidden these truths from the general public. Sadly, it's all too common for the health-conscience to be criticized for our choices by people lacking the proper education on this lifestyle and nutrition in general. How can one do their body right, without understanding how it functions optimally? It's time to take charge of your health, your life will be grateful for it. Once can let go of bad habits and really start to feel great, it's amazing what positive forces will enter your life.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Long time, no blog

Gosh, I can't believe it's been so long since my last post! Very sad, but good things are coming and I just wanted to say hello, I've missed you. We've been busy with family stuff and learning more and more about superfoods—I love it! I've met so many wonderful and inspiring people along my journey so far, so keep checking out the links and blogs to the left as I've added some great sites recently. I also added the guest post I wrote on The Green Smoothie Blog about my adventures with green smoothies and my favorite recipes. Of course things are always evolving and I am committed to keeping readers out there better informed.

But now it's time to get back to work. I have a long list of things to share with you and I'm ecstatic about some opportunities I've discovered and become a part of, so stay tuned. For now here's a new recipe I tried after thinking, "Why haven't I juiced something other than carrots yet?! What am I waiting for?!"

Carrot Juice Blend

Carrot Juice Blend

Juice the following for 1-2 servings:

  • 5 carrots
  • 1 cucumber
  • 4 celery stalks
  • 1 apple

Blend with:

  • 1/4 butternut squash (previously frozen and thawed to make softer
  • 1/2 avocado
  • 4 brazil nuts
  • 1 T lemon juice
  • 1 T grated ginger

This was so refreshing, energizing, and hydrating! I'm really looking forward to juicing more now. My mom got me my Jack LaLanne's Power Juicer for about $99, and it works great. I made this juice/soup blend another time and added some sprouts as well as cayenne for an extra kick. I can honestly say I feel the surge of energy from all the readily available nutrients quickly absorbed into my body. And it was surprising filling. Hmmm... maybe a juice feast is in my near future... I'm just concerned about the cost. Any tips/suggestions, or is that not an issue for you?

So have you missed me as much as I've missed writing and sharing with you? Next up: continuing the video lecture series filled with great info from Dr. Sommers. Stay tuned as I will be posting regularly from now on.

Sunday, February 15, 2009

Recent raw recipes to rave about

I've been a bit behind on posting recipes, so here's some catching up. I also tried to include some info on the nutritional qualities of a few of the ingredients.

Thai noodles with marinated mushrooms

Thai noodles with marinated mushrooms

Ingredients for 1 serving:

  • 1/2 package of kelp noodles
    (substitution ideas: spiralized zucchini or daikon)
  • 1 cored and chopped apple
  • 1 garlic clove
  • 1 T minced ginger
  • 1 t red curry powder (or to taste as some are spicier than others)
  • 1 T coconut butter (or oil)
  • 1/4 c olive oil
  • 1 T lemon juice
  • dash of sea salt
  • 1/2 cup sliced mushrooms
  • 1 t kelp with cayenne seasoning
  • 1 T lemon juice
  • 1 T olive oil
  • 1/4 c sliced leek
  • 1/2 c carrots
    (diced, sliced, shredded or however you prefer)
  • 1 T sesame seeds
  1. Marinate mushrooms in kelp seasoning, 1 T lemon juice, 1 T olive oil, and cayenne (feel free to add any other flavors) for about 15 minutes
  2. Rinse kelp noodles and place on plate
  3. Combine ingredients from apple to sea salt in blender and blend until creamy
  4. Place carrots and leeks over noodles
  5. Drizzle with sauce
  6. Add mushrooms
  7. Sprinkle with sesame seeds

I love thai food so when I made this recipe it totally hit the spot for my massaman curry craving. My friend at work tried the sauce and has been anxiously waiting for this post, it's that good! It's also a super-fast meal if you skip the mushrooms. Add any other veggies you want or keep it simple.

Kelp is a seaweed (brown algae) loaded with minerals and high in iodine, calcium, protein, vitamin C and B12 (not typically found in plant foods). Kelp noodles are very low in calories and flavorless--a great substitute for pasta.

Ginger is said to benefit digestion, neutralize poisons in food, ventilate the lungs, and increase circulation. It has been shown helpful in counteracting nausea and is used for the treatment of cough (it acts as an expectorant) and the common cold.

Rawsome tacos with Brent's salsa

Rawsome taco with Brent's salsa

Makes 6 tacos in cabbage leaf shells, collard greens also work great for burritos.

Taco meat:

  • pulp from 6 large carrots
    (or you can use shredded carrots)
  • 1/2 c walnuts or almonds
  • 2 cloves garlic
  • Spices to your liking:
    sea salt
  • 1/4 c olive oil
  • splash of nama shoyu or Bragg's aminos
  • enough water or salsa juice to process

"Refried Beans"

  • 1 c sprouted sunflower seeds or sprouted adzuki beans
  • Spices to your liking:
    sea salt
  • splash of nama shoyu or Bragg's aminos
  • 1/4 c olive oil
  • enough water or salsa juice to process

Brent's Salsa: watch video

Not sure on the exact amounts, but here are the ingredients:

  • tomatoes
  • red onion
  • garlic
  • jalapeno
  • lime juice
  • cayenne
  • sea salt
  • olive oil (optional)
  1. Prepare salsa according to video or make your own version
  2. Combine taco "meat" ingredients in food processor and combine until well mixed
    Tip: if you want more texture mix in finely chopped nuts at the end (not in processor)
  3. Place "meat" in cabbage shells
  4. Combine "refried beans" ingredients in food processor or blender and puree
  5. Top off tacos with "beans" and salsa

This is one of Brent's favorite meals. I like to top mine with some guacamole. Another version (not raw) is to use sprouted grain wraps and make a burrito or make nachos with raw crackers (another recipe to come). I've been experimenting with this recipe and another neat flavor to add to the "meat" is a little bit of cinnamon. I know it sounds weird, but you've got to try it to believe it.

Sunflower seeds are another source of protein, healthy fats, iron and vitamin E. Sprouting magnifies these qualities and makes it easier to digest. I like to sprout them and then dehydrate them so they will keep longer in the fridge. Find out about the powerful benefits of cayenne here.

And for dessert, skip the dairy give this a try:

Banana-mango "ice cream"


Ingredients for 2:

  • 1 frozen banana
  • 1 c frozen mangos
  • 1/2 c cashews
  • splash of coconut water (or filtered water)

Puree all ingredients into thick, creamy mixture. Spoon into cup and decorate with strawberry and cacao nibs for a little crunch.

Bananas are a very good source of vitamin B6 and a good source of vitamin C, potassium, dietary fiber, and manganese. I eat a banana on a daily basis and Brent loves them as a pre- and post-run snack.

One of my favorite fruits, mango, is super good for you. Mango is a good source of minerals such as copper and potassium. It contains traces of magnesium, manganese, selenium, calcium, iron, and phosphorus. The nutritional value of mango makes it good for weight gain, eye disorders, hair loss, heat stroke, diabetes, bacterial infections, sinusitis, indigestion, constipation, morning sickness, diarrhea, liver disorders, menstrual disorders, and vaginitis.

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Best Valentine's dinner ever!

Happy Valentine's Day everyone! I hope you showed your love today and that you'll carry it with you always. May we all be grateful for the love in our lives and around us. Thank you Brent for the card you made for me, it was so special :) and thank you readers for your support, encouragement, and inspiration. It means so much to know you're interested in my thoughts. As I continue to work on expanding this blog into a website, I will reward my first followers for your kindness. Until then, send me a message on twitter or leave me a comment with any question you would like answered and I'll answer them ASAP. Now on to our fabulous meal...

Oh, I'm so full of yumminess tonight! We went to Almond Blossom Cafe for "Raw in Love" and it was so delicious! We started off with some salsa and crackers, followed by a Tex-Mex platter (that would have filled us up alone), and finished off with a dessert platter. We couldn't finish the sweet treats there, so we came home and watched the movie Juno while I munched away at the remains.

Tex-Mex is my husband's favorite raw cuisine, so if you have a friend that's curious about living foods, a raw "taco" is sure to please their taste buds. Full of flavor and good for you! You can't say that about Taco Bell!

Desserts are another sure way to convince skeptics that raw foods are delicious! Don't these just make you drool?! Truffles, cake, cobbler, and pudding, oh my!

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Want to change the world? Change your diet!

I'm professing my commitment to be 100% vegan for life right now. I may not be able to stick to 100% raw (although I'm not far off), but I am done polluting my body and the world and I'm doing my part by giving up animal products.

I just got back from Smoothie & Movie night at Almond Blossom Cafe, where we watched Eating. You can preview it here. Made me so sad about not sticking to my vegetarian diet back in college. After doing a research paper on the topic, I was vegetarian for 3 years and just quit one day because of my cravings and influences around me that I just couldn't overcome.

This month has been my first vegan raw month and I'm happy to say that I'm never turning back, especially after watching that video! I highly recommend it to EVERYONE and it's very affordable so get yourself a copy and share it with all the people you know who are suffering from cancer and diseases. I hope to get my friends and family to watch it too. Anyone up for a movie night soon? This is going to be required viewing for my stepkids. I can't wait to see how they react to the information.

The studies, statistics, and interviews were very inspiring and depressing at the same time. It's so sad to see how quickly our species is killing itself. Not only by what we put in our mouths, but the entire process to get it there and then treat the symptoms we suffer from because of these choices. I learned so much from this movie but I can not express to you how important the information is.

We have a cure for diseases! It's called our immune system people! When you feed your body in a way that keeps your immunity high, cancer can not live in you. When you eat a plant-based diet, you are literally saving the world.

Benefits of not consuming animal products:

  • Reduces global warming
  • Keeps your heart healthy
  • Builds stronger bones
  • Improves digestion
  • Reverses and cures cancers and diseases
  • Decreases toxicity
  • Prolongs life expectancy
  • Promotes political change
  • Stops animal cruelty

I know what some of you may be thinking... What about protein? Let's take a look at history and the world today. For most of our existence, we have mainly consumed plant-based foods. Even the cavemen, only rarely ate meat, they feasted on a variety of fruits, vegetables, nuts, and seeds. There is enough protein in plant-based foods to sustain life, our species has proven this over thousands of years. If you just ate potatoes all day, you would get enough protein. No scientist or doctor has been able to prove that you need meat to get enough protein. Most people are actually eating too much of it! The only way to be protein deficient is to starve yourself. It wasn't until later on that the rich were able to afford animal products. They were the first to suffer from food-related illnesses (which most are) while the poor didn't experience heart disease because they couldn't afford to buy meat. Now that meat has been made cheaper (and filled with hormones, antibiotics, and bacteria) more and more people can afford it. The correlation can be seen across the globe. Take the Chinese for instance, the more they've adapted our SAD (standard American diet) the more of our diseases they're inheriting as well.

The same goes with calcium. Countries eating plant-based diets have stronger bones and consume far less calcium than Americans. Eating raw foods provides all the nutrients, minerals, and protein your body needs. Some overweight and diseased people are quick to criticize and judge our choice of diet and wonder where we get our protein and calcium. They are a product of advertising. The media is fed by lobbyists, not working for your best interest. You may not believe what I'm writing about, but are you going to just take their word for it or do a little research and find out the truth for yourself?

There is so much to be said about this common sense information, yet people would rather take a pill than change their diets. I don't know about you, but I want to live long and well. I'm committing to doing everything I can to keep my body as healthy as possible, and not eating meat and dairy is a crucial step in doing so. After over a month without these, I no longer even crave them—I'm actually repulsed by it now. You can do it to, do it for you and generations to come. They shouldn't have to inherit our bad lifestyle and dying earth.

Leading doctors in the video professed that following the US dietary guidelines will kill you! Politics have a cruel way of keeping their wallets full by lobbying for drugs, meat, and dairy companies. They don't want people to know they can cure themselves by changing to a vegan diet. Watch the interviews and hear from patients who ignored their doctors recommendations and took their health into their own hands. If there is one thing that Al Gore and Obama have failed to stress, it's the importance of our diets, and how making a transition from a high-fat, animal-based diet will save our world.

Some of the greatest thinkers of our time had it figured out hundreds of years ago (Plato, Albert Einstein, Leonardo da Vinci, Thomas Edison, and many more) so what are we waiting for?! Let's change now before it's too late.