Tuesday, January 4, 2011

The Dreaded New Years Resolutions

Almost everyone I know wants to make a change towards a healthier lifeSTYLE in the New Year. Having once been 90 pounds heavier than I am now, I can relate. Take your resolutions in strides. Going all in may work for some but not everyone is as strong-willed as the next person and you could just be setting yourself up for failure.
If you’re one of those all-in types, your resolution may be to eat a healthy diet and add in some exercise. Great, so what do you do? Maybe you look around for the latest fad diet but if you’re lucky you come across the RAW FOOD lifestyle!

The biggest misconception that puts people off is “does this mean I have to just eat salad all day?” Far from it!!! You can get very creative with RAW food preparation. We can talk more about that later, for now, let’s talk about the season we’re in.

If you’re in the Midwest it’s freezing outside and a RAW FOOD lifestyle is far from appealing. Who wants to eat cold food when it’s freezing outside? It’s not very comforting and there is something to be said about the nourishment you receive from comforting and loving yourself.

The answer: Steam Your GREENS! I‘m steaming everything right now. Tomatoes, carrots, green beans, broccoli, asparagus, spinach and kale to name a few. Kale is delicious when it’s steamed! Have you ever tried it? Lightly steam your veggies for 5 minutes or so and squeeze a little lemon on there for flavor (not that it needs any more), and if you tend towards dryness this time of year, add in a little coconut oil and a pinch of sea salt. Having your greens lightly steamed is a great way for the body not to have to deal with fully digesting them all on its own, VERY important in the COLD winter months. Steamed greens are still a VERY clean and a detoxifying food. Eating this way through the winter will put you on top of your game and by the time spring and summer roll in you’ll be loving your greens RAW!

Another obstacle of having too much RAW in the winter or trying to be at a strict 100% RAW food intake is that you won’t be as grounded as you may normally be. Not to mention causing you an unnecessary strain freaking out about every little thing you eat. Back in August of 2009 I went 100% all RAW (and called it RAWgust to be cute) just to see if I could get anything else to shift in my being. Keep in mind I was already between 90-95% RAW. Was there a shift? You bet! I became super flighty forgetting things all the time, which is very uncharacteristic of me. I do forget here and there, but I mean everything was beginning to slip my mind. One great thing that came out of RAWgust was that I came up with my RAW Coconut Curry Sauce. I had a craving and just had to figure out a way to make it RAW.

So if you want a clean lifestyle in the New Year, here is what I suggest you can do. Give up most if not ALL processed foods. (Store bought: Almond milk, soy milk, ALL soda especially diet soda, anything with a refined sugar) Eliminate dairy from your diet. Have as many greens as possible and STEAM them! Soups are a good way to get in your clean foods too, just stay away from canned veggies, (they’re processed) even if it’s “organic” use fresh ingredients. I know this seems harsh, but what ever you're changing from chances are it wasn't gentle in the first place. That’s why you’ll have one “BAD” day a week where it is ok to have the things that you normally crave, indulge in and think you can't live without. Before your first “BAD” meal or dinner do yourself a favor and go a solid week with these guidelines to give your body a chance to clean out. When you do have your “BAD” meal you may feel so bad afterwards that you say “This isn’t worth it. I like the way I feel when I’m eating the clean foods!” It’s also very important to get into a gym, your size will determine your ability but never let it deter you all together. When I was at my biggest my starting point was on treadmill at a walking pace with a little incline, you have to START somewhere.

If you’re interested in Healthy living and live in the Chicago area I have 2 very important events coming up. The first is on Saturday January 8th at 5pm in the party room of the condo building located at 21w. Cheastnut st. Chicago, 2 blocks from the red line and 5 blocks from the brown line. I will be giving an informative talk on the benefits of HealthForce Nutritionals, www.healthforce.com the best supplements out there recommended by 5 out of 5 Yogis! You can visit their website for more information but please join me in the 8th for an up close and personal look at what they have to offer.

On Saturday the 22nd of January I’ll be co-hosting a “Night of Bliss” with Karen Weber. At Yoga Now in Chicago 742 n. LaSalle. Involved in the night is an hour and fifteen minute yoga practice incorporating Essential Oils to enhance your experience, followed by a two hour RAW food demo and dinner. I will walk you through step by step instructions on how to make the foods we will be enjoying and we'll also give you the recipes for the foods we've had. We will end the evening with crystal bowl sound healing which will leave you in a state of bliss. You can register for this event now by visiting www.yoganowchicago.com click on workshops/kirtan and scroll down to “Night of Bliss”

for questions and Lifestyle consulting with The Raw Yogi: 773-551-7810

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

my before and after

In November of 2007 I was in the worst shape of my life both physically and mentally. I can remember wanting to take a hover-round around the zoo. I would have to say that contemplating suicide in my spare time was my all time low. It became obvious to me that a change was necessary. I heard about raw foods and their healing abilities. I began to make my shift into a raw food lifestyle.
I love to eat, especially the tasty “bad for you” foods but in November of 2007 my weight had reached a troubling 260 lbs. Hitting that number sent off a warning and gave me the motivation to make a long overdue lifestyle change. In my search I stumbled across the world of Raw Food. The philosophy adheres to the idea that cooking foods destroys their enzymes making it difficult for the body to digest them properly. Thus, the body stores the undigested food as fat. With my craving for eating “bad for you” foods, I took this idea of eating Raw Foods and combined it with my love of delicious desserts like Chocolate Cheese Cake (made mostly of cashews) and Chocolate Pudding (made with avocados).
Within a short amount of time I experienced more energy and youthfulness unlike anything before. I lost a total 90 lbs (rather quickly) and have reclaimed my life. I feel it is my duty to share my story. I want to help others to live a healthy enjoyable existence while being able to indulge in delicious foods. Eating healthy doesn’t mean that one must only eat salad. While in my shift I began to lose the typical cravings I had always had for stuff like pizza and soda, and was now gravitating towards healthier choices like apples, celery, and lettuce. Something which one cannot do when it is filled with a bunch of junk food, my body and mind became clean. Not only was I able to make clear and healthy decisions about what I wanted to put into my body, I was crave them as well.
Now I’m not saying that I woke up one morning and said, I’m a raw foodie, no more cooked food for me. Far from it, my shift has continued to evolve over time. Any long lasting and significant change has to progress organically. Together we can discuss a practical program that can be incorporated into your life right now with the ability to progress as your body and mind desire the foods that are right for living a happy and healthy life.