And so it begins...
Date: March 15, 2009 12:21PM
Today is Day 1 of my 30-day raw experiment. I'm calling it an "experiment" rather than a "lifestyle" or a "journey," because at this point I'm not shooting for optimum health -- just better health. :-)
I've been a "mostly-tarian" (i.e. mostly lacto-ovo vegetarian) for about 5 years. I've eaten meat on very rare occasions -- usually just to avoid insulting family members (Thanksgiving, for example). Like many people, I've struggled with occasional bouts of overeating brought on by stress -- cookies, chocolate and ice cream have consistently been my drugs of choice.
MY CURRENT HEALTH STATUS:
I'm not overweight, but I don't feel like like my body is humming along in perfect condition, either. I've struggled with mild adult acne ever since I went off the birth control pill 3 years ago. I've also struggled with mild depression, especially during the dark, cold winter months.
WHAT I'M DOING:
Going raw for 30 days and chronicling my experience.
WHY I'M DOING IT:
Reason #1: I'm a fervent reader of Gala Darling's fabulous blog (www.galadarling.com). Ms Darling recently completed a 28-day raw challenge over the month of February, with glowing results. I admire her mindset of abundance (and awesome pink hair!). It's obvious that she takes tremendous pleasure in eating well, dressing well and living well. I want to feel like that, too. :-)
Reason #2: Most of my co-workers are about 10 to 15 years older than me. They are all talented, brilliant people with highly-specialized skills. I look up to them -- but I also worry about the long-term effects of cubicle-induced workplace stress. Put bluntly, I don't want to be working in cube-farm 10 years from now...or even 5 years from now. For me, going raw is part of a larger transition towards taking ownership of my entire life...and ultimately being self-employed.
Reason #3: I'm just a curious person. I like to try things. I can't really fathom any "downside" to eating raw foods for 30 days, so why the heck not?
Now that that's out of the way, let's get to the yummy part: what I'm eating today!
I've noticed that many raw fooders list every specific morsel of food that passes their lips, along with the date & time, impact on their colon, etc, etc. That's cool -- to each his (or her) own. Personally, I'm taking a much more liberal approach to the whole "food diary" thing. Rather than a minute-by-minute, blow-by-blow account, I'll just be sharing a daily menu of some of the things I'm excited about tasting. :-)
So here we go!
ON THE MENU, 3/15/09:
> "Raw Oatmeal" (whole rolled oats soaked overnight in a mixture of cold-pressed 100% apple juice and purified water, mixed with chopped almonds, dates, dried apricots, shredded Fuji apples).
> Plain old green and red grapes.
> Multigrain sprouted Manna bread with raw almond butter, drizzled with raw agave nectar.
> Salad with romaine lettuce, avocado, carrots, sprouts, tomatoes and cucumber with a lemon juice + flaxseed oil dressing.
> Carrot-walnut-spinach puree, spread onto romaine lettuce leaves.
> Kombucha tea, green tea, and LOTS of H2O.
Day 1 won't be 100% raw in the strictest sense, but it's still pretty "rawsome," right? ;-)
Thanks for reading...have a swell day!
Re: And so it begins...
Posted by: Mona ()
Date: March 16, 2009 08:34AM
Welcome! Sounds like a great goal. I'm so happy you joined us. One thing that helps me stay raw is to ask myself "What do I value most? My health or a few moments of satisfaction of eating (fill in the blank) which could contribute to the cause of the diseases I have when I go off raw food?" I must admit, I got into raw food due to health reasons so that's where my focus is. I have known about it for decades, but didn't try it until I was sick.
There's so many wonderful recipes you can try. I tend to post recipes in my diary because I love sharing what tastes good to me.
Looking forward to reading your diary and seeing how you're doing. Please feel free to send me a private message if you have any questions or just ask.
Glance at the past, but donâ€™t stare at it.
I stood in the sunlight at last.
Day 2 / 30
Date: March 16, 2009 09:27AM
Day 2 / 30
Thanks for your wonderfully welcoming note, Mona! Looking forward to checking out your personal recipes. :-)
I've been reading all these "detox horror stories" and I was worried that I'd wake up this morning feeling like death warmed over. Happily, that was not the case! I feel quite light and clear-headed. My skin already looks a little better -- is that possible?
Got to dash off to the office, but here are a few of the raw foods I'm planning to munch on today:
ON THE MENU, 3/16/09:
> "Raw oatmeal cookies" (organic rolled oats, raw almond butter, cold-pressed organic apple juice, chopped raw cashews, almonds, dates, and dried apricots, shredded apples, agave nectar, pink sea salt ~ shaped into flattened discs and left overnight in the fridge to solidify)
> Double-shot of wheatgrass with a sour white grapefruit wedge chaser
> Delightful "everything in the fridge" veggie salad with raw apple cider vinegar dressing
> Manna bread "mini sandwich" with raw almond butter and a smushed date
> Fruit platter with mango, kiwi, pear, watermelon, apple, green and red grapes
> Green tea, copious amounts of H20
My Cuisinart food processor and Nesco dehydrator both arrive on Thursday! Only four more days till I can make walnut pesto and crunchy flax crackers! Haha. It's a little silly how excited I am about the prospect of pureeing and drying.
Have a gorgeous day, everyone. Thank [deity of choice] it's almost Spring!
Day 2 / 30 ~ Fairy Fridge
Date: March 16, 2009 07:37PM
Just wanted to share a pleasant little episode...I was walking home from the office this evening (yes, I'm one of those lucky people who lives within walking distance of their workplace!) and I found myself feeling sort of deflated. The city seemed grim, and everyone around me looked vaguely sleepy and sad. I just wanted to get home as swiftly as possible.
And when I got home, I looked into my fridge...gazed upon all the lovely rows of mangoes and kiwis and apples and grapes and freshly-washed romaine lettuce and spinach and bountiful bags of almonds and cashews and walnuts...and I thought to myself, "this looks like the inside of a fairy's fridge!"
I immediately felt better about everything, because honestly - who wouldn't want to be a fairy? ;-)
Day 3 / 30
Date: March 17, 2009 10:31PM
Day 3 / 30
I have to say...I am shocked by how smoothly my raw transition is going. I'd mentally prepared myself for horrible cravings, sickening detox symptoms, and all the rest of it. But three days in, I feel...fine. Better than fine! I feel quite content and relaxed. Is this normal? Haha! :-)
I've been watching lots of YouTube video tutorials to learn how to prepare raw nut milk, nori rolls, avocado 'pudding', tabouli and other 'rawsome' dishes. I was quite worried that I'd become bored with raw food after a day or two, but I'm totally digging all these new recipes! And I love the fact that I never have to clean my stove afterward. Bonus! :-)
ON THE MENU, 3/17/09:
> Raw cranberry granola (made by "2 Moms in the Raw": www.2momsintheraw.com) with organic cold-pressed apple juice and sliced banana
> Wheatgrass (I buy it in frozen chunks from Whole Foods and let 1 or 2 chunks defrost overnight in a shot glass)
> Green and red grapes, white grapefruit, watermelon, apple
> Nori rolls filled with spinach, romaine lettuce, carrots, cucumber, sprouts, avocado, radish, celery, and almond-garlic-lemon spread (almond butter + lemon juice + Bragg's amino acid + tons of crushed garlic + sea salt)
> Blueberry kombucha tea (I LOVE this stuff: www.gtskombucha.com)
> Manna bread with raw cashew butter (I LOVE this stuff, too! www.naturespath.com/products/breads)
> SO much water! I feel like a thirsty camel
Well, it's almost my self-imposed bedtime. Sweet dreams, everyone.
Day 4 / 30
Date: March 18, 2009 09:40AM
Not much to report...woke up feeling serene and optimistic. I'm definitely noticing some de-puffing going on around my tummy, which I take as a positive sign. On a purely aesthetic note, I can't wait to see what I look like a couple weeks from now!
Off to work...my new "thing" is listening to energizing Celtic rock music (like The Young Dubliners and Runrig) while I'm at my computer. For some reason, driving guitars & Gaelic help me focus. Go figure. ;-)
Have a lovely day, everyone.
Day 5 / 30
Date: March 19, 2009 09:27PM
Day 5 / 30.
Wow. All I can say is wow. Just 5 days in, I am already noticing a tremendous shift in my energy levels, focus, and general perspective on life. I'm literally quivering with energy...I couldn't stop tapping my feet and bouncing around at my desk today. Listening to The Young Dubliners through my headphones probably didn't help. ;-)
My shipment of raw sunflower seeds, chick peas, flax seed and cacao powder arrived today ~ I ordered everything from www.NutsOnline.com (their prices are waaaay better than my local Whole Foods). I'm soaking some chick peas for sprouting - I've never sprouted anything before, so it'll definitely be an experiment!
My fridge, freezer and kitchen are looking pretty magical. I'm a very aesthetic person, and surrounding myself with fresh, colorful food is making me really happy! :-)
ON THE MENU, 3/19/09:
> Raw cashew milk (so easy to make ~ just blend a small scoop of cashew butter with cold water and agave nectar to taste)
> Watermelon juice
> Carrot juice
> Wheatgrass juice
> Yerba Mate tea (a friend told me to try it, but I didn't really care for the flavor)
> Bowl of fresh strawberries, sliced banana and apple
> Raw granola (still can't get over how delicious this stuff is...too bad it's so pricey)
> Vietnamese spring rolls filled with spinach, romaine, carrots, green onion, avocado, radish, mango and sprouts (the rice paper wrappers aren't raw, but I'm not too fussed about that...I mean, they're practically translucent!)
> Raw brownies with avocado icing!!! :-)
On an emotional note, I'm going through a peculiar, prolonged, not-quite-break-up right now with someone I love very much. It's a long-term, long-distance dealio, and it's complicated (to put it mildly). My friends and colleagues have been checking in on me to make sure I'm okay...they're expecting me to be a total wreck...but strangely enough, I'm not distraught. If anything, I feel a sense of relief about the whole situation. Go figure.
Well, not much else to report, other than the fact that I feel great! Haha. But I'm sure all of you already know what I'm talking about. ;-)
Day 6 / 30
Date: March 20, 2009 09:05AM
Day 6 / 30
Woke up at 6:56 am this morning (without an alarm), feeling jazzed for the day! I can't remember the last time I voluntarily woke up before 8 am. I can't help but attribute my improved sleep schedule to my raw foody-ness. :-)
Today is BIKE REPAIR DAY!!! Winter is not * quite * over yet (not where I live, anyway) but I'm taking my bike to the shop for some new tires and a major tune-up...I want to be ready to ride on the first official day of spring.
My menu today is fairly similar to yesterday...less juice, perhaps, and more salad? We'll see how it goes.
Planning to head over to Whole Foods tomorrow...can't wait to try maca powder, nama shoyu, and all the other raw treats and flavorings I've been reading about. Also...kale! I'm craving kale, for some reason. Nom nom.
Observation ~ one of the BEST things about eating raw is how your taste buds adjust. Suddenly, plain fruits, veggies and nuts taste SO flavorful, it's almost overwhelming. In the past, eating a plain apple would've been like, "hmm, okay, apple." Now it's like, "ZOMG! APPLE!!!"
Happy Friday, everyone (unless you're in the Australasian region, in which case, happy Saturday!)
Day 7 / 30
Date: March 21, 2009 04:13PM
Day 7 / 30
Has it been 7 whole days already? I think my 30-day challenge could easily slip into a 30-month challenge, because it feels so marvelous.
My dehydrator arrived yesterday ~ huzzah! I made some banana chips and flax crackers last night, and I've got some carrot-green onion-almond-sunflower seed 'burgers' drying out right now. Nice. :-)
I did a major spring cleaning on my apartment this morning. It felt great to shake up the energy and toss out unnecessary stuff. I'm the first to admit that I'm a total neat freak, but the truth is that cleaning and organizing relaxes me. It's like a form of 'walking meditation.'
In other news, I am officially sick of nori. Haha. I need to find a new 'wrapper' for my salad rolls...a simple lettuce leaf just doesn't do it for me, and my favorite Vietnamese rice paper wrappers aren't raw. Hmmm...suggestions, anyone?
Hope you're all well!
Day 8 / 30
Date: March 22, 2009 11:33PM
Day 8 / 30
Listening to Karen Knowler's latest raw food podcast (www.karenknowler.com). For those of you who aren't familiar with Ms. Knowler, she's a raw food coach based in the London. She's got a fantastically balanced attitude towards eating raw -- she asserts that being "successfully raw" means different things to different people. For some people, eating 80% raw equals success. For others, it's 100% or nothing.
Personally, I think I'd be quite happy eating 90 - 100% raw when I'm on my own (which, frankly, is most of the time) but eating cooked vegetarian food when I'm out with friends or family. For me, that would define success.
Hmm...deep thoughts. :-)
On to shallower thoughts...I'm officially obsessed with my new dehydrator. I'm currently drying out some raw granola with apricots and almonds (yum!) and some yam and beet 'chips' (yum also). Looking forward to enjoying those snacks, 12 hours from now...ha! Some people say raising children teaches profound patience. I think dehydrating raw food teaches a fair amount of patience, too. ;-)
ON THE MENU, 3/22/09:
> Carrot-apple-ginger juice
> Vietnamese spring rolls with mango & Thai chili dipping sauce
> Baby carrots, snap peas and flax crackers with garlic-spinach-almond pate
> Raw brownies with fresh strawberries and homemade almond milk
> Random nibbles of grapes, grapefruit, tangerine and apple
Mmmm...I'm looking forward to tomorrow...it's going to be a gorgeous rainy day, which means that fresh spring grass will be sprouting in just a few days! I can't wait to see greeeeeeen all around. So ready for winter to fully evaporate.
Love to all,
Day 10 / 30
Date: March 24, 2009 08:05PM
Day 10 / 30
Already one-third of the way through my 30-day experiment? Sheesh! Time flies when you're eating raw! ;-)
I'm happy to report that I still feel great -- a smidge less exuberant than last week, but that has more to do with the weather (which turned from glorious sunshine into freezing thunderstorms) than anything else.
Tomorrow I'll have to break away from my rawness for one meal -- it's a work thing, and my entire department is going out to lunch at a very un-raw restaurant. After mulling it over, I've decided that I'd rather calmly enjoy a veggie sandwich with my colleagues than draw unnecessary attention to myself by asking the server if they have any sprouted chickpeas -- haha! Plus, even if 1 meal out of the month is non-raw, there will still be 89 other meals that are! 89 / 90 = 98.8% rawsome. That's still an A+ in my book. And at at the end of the day, this whole experiment is about achieving optimum health: physically, mentally, spiritually, socially and even career-wise! Sometimes, optimum health requires flexibility. I'm down with that.
ON THE MENU, 3/24/09:
> Raw granola (homemade! Whoo hoo! Pureed dates, apples and sunflower seeds form the base...soaked almonds and apricots add the crunchy, chewy texture...dehydrated for about 24 hours at 115 degrees...yum!)
> Lovely strawberries, banana and kiwi
> Kale salad with pine nuts, raisins, flax oil and lemon juice
> Manna bread sandwich with cashew butter and a squishy Medjool date
> More strawberries dipped in a whipped vanilla 'icing' (coconut oil + agave nectar + macadamia nuts + sea salt + vanilla...pureed in food processor)
> Lots of H20 and green tea
Hope everyone's doing well...bye for now!
Re: Day 10 / 30
Posted by: Anonymous User ()
Date: March 25, 2009 11:08AM
I just wanted to jump in here to give you huge props for your journey and for sharing. It sounds so *quaint* to tell someone that they are making a difference nowadays, but this is from the heart. Your postings may be the difference in life and death for many...and me. When trying to overcome an addiction to cooked foods and move to a raw/healthy lifestyle, it is what I would imagine feels like being addicted to alcohol or drugs. And you need to connect w/someone who can take you through a day, visually... so that you can begin to see yourself following that same path to health.
Anyway, not to get to dramatic, but keep it up. You are helping in ways that I cannot explain.
Day 11 / 30
Date: March 25, 2009 11:24PM
Day 11 / 30
Hey, thanks for the note, GayleFox! I'm glad that my raw ramblings are turning out to be helpful to someone other than myself!
If you're looking for more inspiration, I'd definitely recommend checking out raw food coach Karen Knowler (www.karenknowler.com). She has a really realistic stance on raw food...she insists that first and foremost, you have to honestly, truly and completely LOVE the food you're eating! Otherwise, eating raw will just become a chore. I totally agree.
For example, if you force yourself to snarf down bag after bag of baby spinach because you know it's "good" for you and you're "supposed" to like it, but you secretly loathe raw spinach and would rather be having crisp snap peas dipped in spicy peanut sauce or dried apricots or a fresh nectarine, then honor that fact and give your tastebuds what they really want. One person's "perfect" raw food menu may be a long list of yucky grossness for someone else. :-)
Side note ~ I'm having oral surgery tomorrow (whoo hoo! not) so I'll be limited to smoothies, juices and squishy stuff for the next three or four days. Good thing I bought a proper blender the other week!
Day 12 / 30
Date: March 26, 2009 06:58PM
Day 12 / 30
Well, the oral surgery went well...whew! An angelic friend of mine stayed with me all day, making sure I had enough water / painkillers / gauze / ice packs / etc. I have to say, I'm a little shocked about how "good" I feel. Haha -- well, not "good" by any normal standards, but considering the fact that I was anesthetized and operated on just a few hours ago, I feel surprisingly alert and chipper! Modern science definitely has its benefits. :-)
No solid or crunchy stuff for me until Monday or Tuesday. If anyone has any favorite juice concoctions or pudding recipes or veggie puree ideas, I'm all ears -- or "eyes," as the case may be. ;-)
On another health-related note: I finally got my butt to the dermatologist's office and had an adult acne consultation -- something I've been putting off for a long, long time. My skin really isn't * that * bad, but I do have a few persistent spots that never, ever seem to go away. I'm a grown up. I'm ready to look like a grown up. So I'm starting a course of low-dose antibiotics to target the underlying bacteria, along with a topical retinol-based routine. I'm not thrilled about the idea of swallowing and smearing strong chemicals all over my face...but it'll only be for a couple months, and the results will be pretty remarkable. Sometimes, you just gotta roll with it.
ON THE MENU, 3/26/09:
> Banana-strawberry-cashew nut milk smoothie with agave nectar (a little on the sweet side, but after my mandatory pre-surgery fast I just wanted something easy on the tongue)
> Raw chocolate pudding (ripe avocado blended with raw cacaco powder, agave nectar and a pinch of sea salt. So. Good.)
> Strawberry-kiwi-mint-apple juice (More of a thin smoothie than a true "juice" -- but still tasty)
> Wheatgrass juice (I'm all out! Time to buy more...)
> Spinach-Pear smoothie (my first "green smoothie" -- not sure if I'll like it, but it never hurts to try!)
> Lots of painkillers and antibiotics :-(
> LOTS of WATER! :-)
Hope everyone's having a pleasant Thursday...signing off!
Day 13 / 30
Date: March 27, 2009 09:03AM
Day 13 / 30
Still in 'recuperation mode,' but feeling calm and well-rested. I've taken the day off work, so I'm planning to do quiet activities at home...laundry, napping, reading, lying still and simply thinking (what a concept)!
ON THE MENU, 3/27/09:
> Strawberry-kiwi-apple-celery-cucumber juice (must admit, not my favorite flavor combination in the whole universe...but not bad, either)
> Fresh coconut water (never tried it before...yum!)
> Leftover raw chocolate pudding from yesterday (ripe avocado + raw cacao powder, agave nectar and sea salt)
> Spinach-pear-carrot smoothie (best "green smoothie" I've made so far! Very sweet and creamy)
> Kombucha tea, H20, and lots of gentle stretching and napping! :-)
I think I'll be ready for some slightly firmer food by tomorrow...but I'll take it one day at a time. Definitely no sharp flax crackers or anything like that. Yikes! I am definitely craving sodium, however...maybe all the blood loss? I'm new to this whole post-surgery thing. Haha. Hmm...mashed avocado with sea salt, anyone?
Have a beautiful Friday,
Day 14 / 30
Date: March 28, 2009 01:22PM
Day 14 / 30
With regards to my remarkably swift, painless recovery from oral surgery...I may have spoken too soon. Haha. ;-)
I became extremely nauseous and dizzy yesterday afternoon, and pretty much slept the rest of the day...and night. I reckon it was a reaction to the Vicodin. I'm going to steer clear of painkillers today (unless I * really * need 'em) and see if my nausea subsides. So far, so good.
Still craving sodium...I just made some nicely-salted walnut-spinach-basil pesto, which I will probably end up eating straight from the bowl. :-)
Also craving ginger ale, though I suspect that's more of an 'emotional' craving for a beverage that signifies 'recuperation' in my mind. Or, maybe I just want ginger! Haha. Hard to tell sometimes. If I feel up to it, I might buy some ginger-infused kombucha tea from the local Whole Foods.
Not much else to report...just waiting for the ol' mouth to heal up properly. I miss my crunchy salads and spring rolls!
Re: And so it begins...
Posted by: kwan ()
Date: March 29, 2009 10:27AM
I associate ginger ale with recuperation too, because my mother always gave me ginger ale with ice chips when I started getting better after a bout of the flu or chicken pox, etc., when I was a kid. Hope you feel better soon.
Day 15 / 30
Date: March 29, 2009 12:54PM
Day 15 / 30
Thanks, Sharrhan! I feel MUCH better today. Ironically, most of my discomfort over the past few days was due to the painkillers I was prescribed. Go figure.
Today I will enjoy my very first raw pizza! Whoo hoo! I'm quite excited. I made an almond-flax-tomato-garlic crust in my dehydrator, and it smells awesome. For the toppings, I've got homemade walnut-spinach-basil pesto, sun-dried tomatoes, green onion, more spinach, and lemony cashew "cheese." I wish I'd gotten some fresh pineapple and olives yesterday...I might trek over to the local grocery store and pick some up today (weather and stamina permitting).
ON THE MENU, 3/29/09:
> Mushy breakfast cereal (soaked oat groats + pureed soaked dates + apples + almonds + cinnamon) with fresh strawberries
> Strawberry-banana-cashew butter-agave nectar smoothie
> Raw pizza!!! (see description above)
> Hmmm...maybe the last raw brownie? :-)
On an overly dramatic / emotional note...my new adult acne medication is making my skin look slightly worse than before (this is normal, apparently). Consequently, I feel like a bit of an "ugly duckling." I know it'll all be worth it...a couple weeks from now. But at the present moment, I just want to shield my hideous visage from the world! Haha. Yeah...a little perspective is in order, I know. I'm working on it. :-)
Happy Sunday to all,
Day 16 / 30
Date: March 30, 2009 08:44PM
Day 16 / 30
Over the halfway mark!
Today was...interesting, to say the least. Not sure if it's the raw foods detoxifying my body (or all the recent medications re-toxifying my body) but I felt extreeeemely emotional today -- panicked, hysterical and self-conscious. Getting through the workday was a supreme challenge. I have a feeling I'll do some crying later tonight. Oy vey. :-(
Anyways...emotional issues aside, I reckon I'm doing okay. I'm starting to have nostalgic cravings for certain foods that just don't have a raw "equivalent"...like crusty french bread, for example. But overall, I'm still really enjoying my raw creations. No complaints!
ON THE MENU, 3/30/09:
> Raw cacao powder + frozen banana + cashew butter + agave nectar shake (it was really rich and I couldn't finish it, so I made little chocolate "ice cubes" for later...)
> Salad with romaine, avocado, red grapefruit, green onion, cilantro and cucumber + flax oil / nama shoyu dressing
> Manna bread sandwich with almond butter (nom nom...)
> Vietnamese spring rolls filled with lots of veggies (including mung bean sprouts! I forgot how good those are) with homemade ginger-jalapeno-garlic dipping sauce
> Nibbles of leftover raw pizza (mmm...)
> Orange and grapefruit wedges, strawberries and some dates!
So, clearly my menus are pretty similar from day to day...I really like fruit, chocolate, sandwiches, salads and spring rolls...so that's what I make! :-)
Time to go crank up the heat...guess it's not quite spring yet after all!
Re: And so it begins...
Posted by: Mona ()
Date: March 31, 2009 11:25AM
Thank you so much for writing your dairy. I love reading it and hearing about your experience. I feel inspired when I read it and more determined to stay raw. I've been raw for almost 5 years and I'm always tempted. Thank you for sharing.
Attitudes are contagious. Is yours worth catching?
Day 17 / 30
Date: March 31, 2009 08:43PM
Day 17 / 30
Hey, thanks Mona! I'm glad you're enjoying my diary. That's swell. :-)
Today was pretty okay! The weather still sucks, which always brings me down a couple notches, but I had a really positive day at work...I've been struggling to find the "right time" to tell my boss that I want to move back to California at the end of the year, and today the right time just sort of materialized! We had an amazing conversation, he gave me his full support, and I finally feel free to start aggressively pursuing that particular goal. It's a huge relief. Hooray!
Other positive things: my mouth is healing up nicely, so I can munch on crunchy things once more. My skin is looking better, so I'm not freaking out about that as much. I made plans to have brunch with a friend at a raw vegan cafe on Sunday.
In terms of raw foodyness...either my metabolism is shifting, or I'm just not snacking as much as I should be, but I definitely feel like I need to pack in some more calories to get me through the day. I'm not on painkillers anymore, but I still feel spacey and light-headed. I'm guessing the solution is pretty simple: eat more food!
My next dehydrator experiment will be making bread! I found a great-looking recipe over at therawchefblog.com, and I can't wait to test it out. Manna bread is good, but it's so moist and crumbly -- it doesn't really work for proper sandwiches. I'm hoping my dehydrator bread will be a little more structurally sound. :-)
I'm not going to bother posting a menu today, because it's pretty much exactly the same as yesterday -- haha!
Good health to everyone,
Day 18 / 30
Date: April 01, 2009 08:30PM
Day 18 / 30
Well, I think I've discovered the secret to regaining mental clarity and focus: strong...black...COFFEE!
Haha. Ok, ok, so it's not the ideal "raw" choice. But if one cup of fair-trade, organic dark roast joe means the difference between a totally scatterbrained day and a seriously productive day, then I'll take the coffee, thank you very much. ;-)
18 days in, I'm realizing that my "100% raw for 30 days" experiment is gradually morphing into a "90% raw for 3 or 4 months" experiment. And you know what? That's fine! In fact, it's probably healthier. After all, if I feel this good after just 18 days of almost-totally-raw-foodness, I can't even imagine how great I'll feel after, say, 180 days. More than anything, my curiosity is propelling me forward.
On a related note, I think it's totally natural to give myself a modicum of "wiggle room" for non-rawness...good tea & coffee, translucent rice paper spring roll wrappers, the occasional veggie sandwich shared with co-workers...these little things make the difference between feeling strained and feeling satisfied.
Overall balance and vibrance -- that's what I'm shooting for! :-)
ON THE MENU, 4/1/09:
> Strawberry-banana-cashew-date smoothie
> Dried prunes and Medjool dates
> Manna bread with almond butter
> The ubiquitous Vietnamese spring rolls filled with romaine, mung bean sprouts, alfalfa sprouts, carrots, green onions, mango, cucumber, cilantro and avocado + nama shoyu with minced ginger, garlic and green onion dipping sauce
> Fresh cantaloupe, orange wedges, lime wedges, strawberries
> The aforementioned strooooong black coffee! :-)
More positivity flooding my day: receiving a wonderful letter from a faraway friend in the mail (yes, the REAL mail!)...feeling myself re-engage with my work for the first time since last week's surgery...wearing a ridiculously colorful outfit...seeing my skin continue to clear with each passing day...chatting with my dad on the phone...taking a long, luxurious shower.
All is well with me. Hope it is with you, too.
Day 19 / 30
Date: April 02, 2009 06:26PM
Day 19 / 30
Whoa. Today was HARD. For the first time since I began this raw experiment, I felt a very strong pull towards cooked food...specifically MEAT (which I don't even like)! It was peculiar and unsettling. I'm wondering if I'm low on iron, or some other mineral?
ON THE MENU, 4/2/09:
> Banana-cashew-flax seed smoothie
> Handful of prunes and dates
> Leftover raw pizza
> Big salad with romaine lettuce, sprouts, carrots, avocado, mango and cucumber
> Strawberry-orange juice
In other news, I'm getting a massage tonight!!! Sooo excited. Is there anything as wonderful as a massage? I think not.
Bye for now,
Days 20 - 23
Date: April 06, 2009 08:11PM
Days 20 - 23
Well, hello again. You may have noticed that I've been offline for a bit. It's been a pretty life-altering couple of days. :-)
This weekend, I ended (or perhaps I should say, "we" ended) a 2 and 1/2 year relationship. Our parting was mutual, amicable, and very, very positive. The moment we made our decision, we both felt an immediate, all-encompassing energetic shift. It was...if there is such a thing...the "perfect break-up."
For the first time in many, many months, I feel truly light and unencumbered...free to pursue my own version of happiness.
But more on that later. ;-)
I didn't stay 100% raw over the weekend ~ probably more like 65 - 75% raw. I ate grapes and watermelon for breakfast and enjoyed big, bountiful salads for lunch. But there was also tabouli and hummus and wonderful organic cheese and bread and wine, shared with friends. I savored all of it, and didn't feel self-critical. Quite the contrary, actually...for once, I was feeling very compassionate with myself. Raw or un-raw, I think that's a very good sign. :-)
I'll try to ramp back up to 85 - 100% rawness again over the next couple of days. This time, I think I'll focus more on fresh fruit and simple salads, and less on fussy dehydrated dishes and nut spreads. Those are fun to prepare, but I feel better when I stick with simplicity.
Hope everyone's doing well.
Day 29 / 30
Date: April 12, 2009 10:40PM
Day 29 / 30
The past week has fluctuated pretty wildly between really-raw and sooooo-not-raw. My thirty-day raw food experiment has wound up being more of a twenty-something-day raw food experiment with a bit of Domino's pizza and beer thrown into the mix. ;-)
I'm not exactly proud of myself, but I'm trying to have some perspective and remind myself that over the past month I've ended a long-term relationship, recovered from surgery and made a major career decision involving a cross-country move. There's a lot of turmoil in my life, and berating myself for not being a "perfect" raw fooder is hardly helpful...or healthy.
I'm going to reshuffle my goals and begin another raw food challenge starting next week...but this time, rather than aiming for 100% raw for 30 days, I think I'll shoot for 75% raw for 3 months...I'm thinking raw breakfast + lunch with a cooked vegan dinner. In setting a broader goal, I'm hoping to avoid the dangerous "all or nothing" mental trap.
Hope everyone's doing well...bye for now!
Re: And so it begins...
Posted by: Jgunn ()
Date: April 12, 2009 11:01PM
youve done excellent Wish yer right beating yourself up is counter productive
...Jodi, the banana eating buddhist
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