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Thursday, March 10, 2011

Detox Day Two

There is a jar of peanut butter sitting on the table next to me. It’s talking to me and telling me to open it up and dig in. Dig in with a big hunk of chocolate. Im not sure if I’m hallucinating from a major lack of food, or if I’m just trying to talk myself out of continuing this madness. That's right, its only day TWO of a 28 day cleanse. Sigh.

For those of you who don’t know, Terra and I have decided to embark on 28 day raw cleanse, which starts with 7-10 days of nothing but raw vegetable (and some fruit) juices. Technically it is not fasting, because we are supposed to consume four 32oz juices per day. You would think that if you are not eating, that would not be too difficult. Yeah.. not so much. Yesterday I started with three 24oz juices and I forced the last one down, today I couldn’t even drink that .. Im finding it impossible to drink this much fluid. But, I am still hungry. Grr.

Terra is doing this because she wants to be ready for her upcoming nuptials, I’m doing this because apparently I’m a masochist, and a supportive friend. Either way, Im thinking “whose idea was this anyway” right about now. However, I have done fasts before, and if there is one thing i have learned it is that day two or three is usually the worst and then all of a sudden you just aren’t hungry anymore. When I woke up this morning I was surprised at how good I felt and how little hungry I was, so much so that i spent an hour and a half in the kitchen slaving over my juicer. Who knew not cooking or eating could take so much time and effort? But the day progressed and congestion and the hunger set in, and now its just me versus the peanut butter.

On a side note, I was just exchanging texts with Terra and when my auto-correct changed ‘sayin’ to ‘satin’ her response was ‘mmmm, seitan’, so I’m pretty sure she’s feeling the same way! (Seitan being a tofu-like non-meat made from wheat gluten - hey anything sounds good when you’re this hungry).

What is the purpose of this post you ask? Honestly, I have no idea. I'm pretty sure my brain is too hungry to work. But, Aside from just trying to give you a glimpse into our journey, hopefully its a lesson that cleansing or fasting is not easy and should not be taken lightly. The results are certainly beneficial, especially if you want to jump start weight loss or aid healing from chronic illness, but it’s certainly a ‘no pain, no gain’ experience. Detoxing is well, detoxing... your body needs to go through some discomfort (fatigue, congestion, headaches etc.) and adjustment in order to rid itself of the things that have been ailing it. Generally it gets worse, before it gets better... and I for one can not wait until it gets better!!

Keep it Fresh!
- Jill

Drinking Your Dinner

When I was in law school, I used to "drink my dinner" all the time. First, second and third course was a Becks followed by a dessert of some sort of fruity shot. Unless I was feeling exceptionally rowdie, in which case, first, second and third course was a sweet Makers manhattan with two cherries. Who needs dessert when you have cherries in your dinner?

Oh how the times have changed.

Tonight my dinner consisted of 4 carrots

Five oranges:

and a chunk of ginger. But of course, I am drinking it from a Basil T's beer mug

It has been 48 hours and I'm tired of drinking and I'm tired of peeing. Seriously, do you know how much you pee when you drink 32 ounces of liquid for breakfast, lunch, snack and dinner. OMG A LOT!

Honestly, yesterday was painful. For those of you who plan on juicing or doing a liquid cleanse, don't take a zumba class on the day you start and don't follow it up by teaching a yoga class. You won't have enough calories to sustain the activity and you'll end up with a blistering headache. Yowch. I should have known better. Lesson (re)learned.

Keep it Fresh!

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Day 1

Since my yearly vegan challenge slipped my mind, I'm upping my ante. I am going raw to detox and kickstart my bridal health goals.

Today is DAY 1.

For the next 10 days I will be drinking deliciously fresh juices and for the 18 days following that I will be only consuming raw foods. I will be getting moral support from Jill and my friend Nancy, and we'll all get help from Raw Food Rehab.

So what the heck is going raw all about???

Sure, you might feel like you're being healthy when you order a nutritious salad (meaning: not a pile of iceberg lettuce saturated in creamy, fatty dressing, but actually vegetables), but would you want to commit to eating all raw food, all the time? The raw food movement, sometimes called the Live Food movement, is focused on eating only raw and unprocessed foods, often organically grown. Although many are only familiar with the vegan version of this movement, there are vegetarians (lacto-ovo and others), as well as omnivores who participate. A smaller component of the movement actually promotes a carnivorous (only animal product) diet. Similarly, fruitarians- those who try to only eat fruit- are a part of the raw food movement.

One of the main tenets of the belief that raw food is better lies in the loss of nutrients through cooking or processing food. While this is certainly true to a very large degree, it does not hold across the board. A more holistic approach might be to look at each food individually to determine whether it should be eaten raw, slightly cooked, or thoroughly cooked. As with most things in life, knowledge is power.

For some foods, scientists have discovered that light steaming actually makes nutrients available in food that the body would not otherwise be able to digest- broccoli is one such food. If the focus is truly bio-availability, then knowing that the nutrients in spinach are most readily absorbed by the body when it is lightly steamed and eaten with vinegar makes it hard to argue for eating spinach raw. With both of these foods, overcooking leads to a loss of nutrients, so attention paid to each individual food will allow you to gain the most nutrients from them. Likewise, freezing blueberries unlocks many of their antioxidant properties - increasing their health benefits, which is what exploring healthy diets is all about.

So, is raw right for everyone? Probably not. Is raw right for you? Maybe....you never really know until you try it. What it all boils down to is bioindividuality. What works wonders for one person may not for the next. You simply have to experiment to find out. Is raw right for me? I guess we're going to find out! Stay tuned for updates on my juice detox and raw foods journey.

~Keep it Fresh!

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Chocolate Banana Super Milkshake

...dairy-free milkshake that is! My chocolate banana milkshake is packed with protein and calcium from the almond butter and milk, while loaded with fiber and omega-3's from the chia seeds and flaxseeds. The organic raw cacao powder, which is a superfood, contains a rich supply of antioxidants, fiber, magnesium and iron, all while having a rich, chocolaty taste! The bananas provide potassium while helping to normalize the movement through your digestive tract (your elimination, teehee!). So, this frozen treat is not only ridiculously yummy, but totally nutritious as well! If cow’s milk is present in your diet and you’d like to use it in this recipe, go for it (as long as it’s organic). You can also experiment with other types of dairy-free milks such as hemp milk, oat milk, rice milk, etc.

1 banana
1 frozen banana
1 1/2 - 2 cups unsweetened almond milk
1 tsp almond butter
1 - 2 tbsp organic raw cacao powder (go easy if it's your first time with just 1 tbsp)
1 tsp ground flaxseeds (optional)
1 tbsp chia seeds
few drops of vanilla extract

I love adding a teaspoon of spirulina to this shake to make it "green" and more nutritious. This of course gives it a little difference in color, but if you're cool with that then I'd say go for it!

Directions: Place all ingredients into a blender, blend until smooth. Enjoy!!

Benefits of Cacao Powder:

Cacao powder is one of the most vital super food to have in your home. A sweet and dense powder, it can be added as an ingredient to many recipes ranging from homemade cakes to milkshakes. It is a remarkable source of essential vitamins like vitamin A, B, C and D additionally it is comprised of various minerals such as magnesium, sodium and zinc. Cacao also positively effects the production of phenylethylamine, a chemical that is produced when a person experiences feelings of love. It is an awesome source of anti-oxidants, compounds called Flavonols that help the body to produce nitric oxide, a compound essential for proper heart function.

Keep it fresh!
- Lauren