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A Health Coach is a supportive mentor and wellness authority who works with clients to help them feel their best through food and lifestyle changes. Instead of prescribing one diet or way of exercising, Health Coaches tailor individualized wellness programs to meet their clients' needs.

Relationships, exercise, career, and spirituality are just as important to your health as the food you eat. Health Coaches understand this and take a holistic approach to supporting the whole person. Find out how health coaching stacks up against other health and wellness jobs.
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Michele@rejuvenationandwellness.com
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11:59 pm

Travelling Raw

The Challenge

The challenge of staying RAW when travelling, can be -- well -- you know . . . challenging.  I promised myself that if I couldn't eat 85% RAW (which is my mantra),  I would not beat up on myself and just go with the flow.  Being in new cities and towns, with local foods and flavors -- sometimes it's just too hard not to resist.  And I don't resist.  I try EVERYTHING!  And I enjoy it too!  And I DO NOT GET DOWN ON MYSELF AT ALL. I eat the way I do because it makes me feel "rejuvenated and well".  When I start adding certain foods back into my diet -- I know that I will not feel well either that night or the next day.  I use my knees and my legs as my barometer.  If the arthritis in my knees act up -- I know that I've eaten foods that have caused inflammation within my joints, and therefore, my gut as well.  I don't panic.  I made that decision to eat the food that I know will affect me so I know to expect the pain.  If I'm on vacation, I'm pretty sure that trying foods that affect me won't be limited to a one-time only type of thing; it would be more like a daily occurrence.
That is why when I travel, I eat and snack on 85% raw and limit the other 15% to explore the flavors of the region I'm in.
I always carry nuts, seeds and dried fruit with me, whether I'm travelling or at home.  This way, if I'm really hungry, I have healthy "live" foods to snack on.  I may also carry "portable" fruit, such as an apple or even a banana, or vegetables such as carrots and/or celery. This trip, I actually brought my Nutribullet [caption id="attachment_1087" align="alignnone" width="150"]Nutribullet Nutribullet[/caption] with me so that I can make healthy, green smoothies!  Yes -- I shlepped my Nutribullet up north with me!!!  I just make sure that I have the ingredients I need to make a wonderful, green smoothie.  And for this trip, that means  I get to shop at two of my favorite northern-only grocery stores and stock up on really healthy RAW goodies. The first one is Trader Joe's. [caption id="attachment_1095" align="aligncenter" width="150"]Trader Joe's Trader Joe's[/caption] I love, love, love this store!!!!!!  Really!  However, two bad things about Trader Joe's is that they're not in Southeast Florida (yet), AND they do not have ON-LINE SHOPPING!!!  Therefore, whenever I travel to a city that has a Trader Joe's, I stock up!  They have the BEST selection of raw nuts and dried fruits at extremely affordable prices. [caption id="attachment_1091" align="alignleft" width="150"]Trader Joe's Raw Nuts Trader Joe's Raw Nuts[/caption] [caption id="attachment_1092" align="aligncenter" width="150"]Trader Joe's Just Mango Trader Joe's Just Mango[/caption]

They also have awesome kale chips (though my homemade ones are better if I do say so myself ) as well as  a great produce department.

[caption id="attachment_1093" align="alignleft" width="119"]Trader Joe's Kale Trader Joe's Kale[/caption] [caption id="attachment_1094" align="alignright" width="150"]Trader Joe's Produce Trader Joe's Produce[/caption] It's amazing how exciting I find grocery stores!  To me -- it's like visiting one of the 7 Wonders of the World.  I get so excited -- like a kid in a candy shoppe! I always used to say that when my husband and I traveled to new places, we did not go to see the sites, but instead went to taste new foods and try new restaurants.  He too, gets excited about a grocery store!! As an after-note -- I am so disappointed that Southeast Florida does not have a Trader Joe's yet.  Not even one that's close.  So whenever I'm in a city that has a Trader Joe's -- I stock up and bring food home.  My husband snapped this photo of me at the airport -- ready to board the plane for home with bags from Trader Joe's.  This photo shows two (2) Trader Joe's bags, but what you're not seeing is the third suitcase I packed full of Trader Joe's nuts, dried fruits, spices, sauces and candy (as gifts)!!! [caption id="attachment_1166" align="aligncenter" width="112"]Stocking up on Trader Joe's!! Stocking up on Trader Joe's!![/caption] One of those exciting Wonders of the World to me would be my second grocery store destination . . . Stew Leonard's! [caption id="attachment_1096" align="aligncenter" width="150"]Stew Leonards Stew Leonard's[/caption] Stew Leonard's is a place to bring the kids!  It's like an amusement park and during the summer, has a petting zoo outside the Norwalk, CT store. [caption id="attachment_1084" align="alignleft" width="90"]The Dairy Cow at Stew Leonard's The Dairy Cow at Stew Leonard's[/caption] [caption id="attachment_1086" align="alignleft" width="150"]The Dairy Musicians at Stew Leonard's The Dairy Musicians at Stew Leonard's[/caption] Stew Leonard's is known for it's dairy, but for me -- it's known for it's PISTACHIO'S.  They have the freshest, largest,  most affordable pistachio's that I know of.  And even though the pistachio's are roasted, a no-no in the raw world, it's the one roasted nut that I allow myself to eat since Dr. Weil Came out and [caption id="attachment_1089" align="aligncenter" width="150"]Pistachios Pistachios[/caption] endorsed pistachios as a great probiotic.  I wrote about the pistachio in my Blog "Four (4) Unique Weight Loss Tools". Stew Leonard's also has an awesome Produce Department and a great staff to answer any questions you may have. [caption id="attachment_1088" align="aligncenter" width="150"]Produce at Stew Leonard's Produce at Stew Leonard's[/caption] When you're on vacation, you should be ON VACATION and not driving yourself nuts about the foods you should or should not eat.   Do the best you can with what you've got.  If you slip, get back up and dust off your hands and start again.  If you get ill from certain foods, just know that in time, you will feel better and be back on track again. Whatever you do, wherever you are and wherever you go, just remember one thing . . . and that is just

Enjoy!

Michele ♥


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12:27 pm

Healthy Snacks

Healthy Snacks for the Holidays!
Dairy Free, Gluten Free, Soy Free, Egg Free, Process Sugar Free and Delish!
I've been a busy little beaver making all sorts of healthy snacks for the Holidays.  My plan was to bring them up North and give then as gifts to friends and family.  However, within 3 hours -- everything I prepped was brought out and devoured -- thankfully -- to great reviews!!! We were given a 2 oz. bag of kale chips as a gift and the family really loved them.  I always promised myself that I was going to tackle dehydrating kale chips, but never got around to it, mostly out of  pure laziness.  But when I went to buy a bag and saw that 2 oz. was $6 -- I knew I can make it for a fraction of the cost.  And I did!  I used Diana Stobo's recipe for Nacho Cheese Kale Chips.  I made two batches.   My first batch, which was my first attempt (new techniques for me to learn), turned out really delicious and tasted EXACTLY like nacho cheese and gone within a day.  So I had to make a huge second batch to bring up North!  The Northern family was sitting around playing games and got hungry.  I pulled out the Nacho Cheese Chips and within no time at all -- they were GONE!  Nothing left.  I would consider that a huge success! [caption id="attachment_1059" align="alignleft" width="150"]Nacho Cheese Kale Chips Dehydrating Nacho Cheese Kale Chips Dehydrating[/caption] [caption id="attachment_1061" align="alignright" width="150"]Finished Nacho Cheese Kale Chips Finished Nacho Cheese Kale Chips[/caption] The second healthy snack I made, I actually previously posted the recipe  which was Jennifer Cornbleet's  Chocolate Candy Cups.  I double up the recipe and put them in gift tins to bring up for the Holidays!  Once again -- GONE within 15 minutes!  And the Holidays aren't even here yet. [caption id="attachment_1063" align="alignleft" width="150"]Raw Uncooking Chocolate Candy Cups 002 RAW Chocolate Candy Cups[/caption] [caption id="attachment_1062" align="alignright" width="150"]Raw Uncooking Chocolate Candy Cups 001 RAW Chocolate Candy Cups[/caption] I love when I prepare something as a gift made with LOVE and people really, really enjoy them.  It totally warms my heart! If  you feel adventurous and want to try something outside of your comfort zone -- try one of your recipes and just . . .

Enjoy!

Michele  ♥

Happy and Healthy Holidays to All ♥


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3:26 pm

Fat Sick and Nearly Dead | a Joe Cross Film

[caption id="attachment_1019" align="aligncenter" width="150"]Joe Cross Fat, Sick & Nearly Dead[/caption]

Coming To A Theater Near You

Run -- Don't Walk!

How many people in our lives are "fat, sick and nearly dead?  Probably, more than you know.  I LOVE, LOVE,  LOVE success stories.   And not only is this one heck of a success story, Joe Cross documented his incredible tale along the way. This independent movie just came across my desk.  I watched 2 trailers  and was immediately sucked in and excited by what this man put down on film!  I even joined Joe's Blog and became a "Fan" on FB right away because I want to know everything this man and his community has to offer.  I plan on watching the entire  movie this evening as soon as I get home. Fat Sick and Nearly Dead | a Joe Cross Film The trailers I watched were more than enough to "reel" me in hook, line and sinker.   Some of the people featured in this documentary could have been me a year ago.  The only difference, however, is that neither I nor anyone in my family, are on any type of meds for any ailments associated with obesity.   We do not have diabetes, high blood pressure or heart disease.   We lucked out in that department by eating as healthy as possible (eventhough we were/are considered obese) and by working out daily.  However, last year I was  eating "processed foods".  This year, I'm not. I must say, I totally related to the woman with the Migraines.   I suffered with Migraines since the age of 11.  They're debilitating and have ruined my life for 52 years. When I would get a migraine -- I could not go to school or work and even missed out on a handful of very happy social gatherings.   For me, switching to a RAW diet has alleviated all of my Migraines!  Juicing and Green Smoothies every day have helped me feel better, lighter and younger.  And when I'm not drinking my greens,  I'm eating them.  And I did this before ever hearing the name of Joe Cross and his movie "Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead".

green juice 1

I also noticed that Dr. Joel Furhman is also in this film.  I knew of Dr. Fuhrman for years.   Dr. Fuhrman wrote the books Eat To LiveEat For Health,  The End of Diabetes, The Nutrition Handbook, Super ImmunityDisease-Proof  Your Child, along with other books as well as  a line of  books geared directly towards children featuring the super-hero  Mitch Spinach.  The only obstacle I have with Dr. Furhman's wonderful plan is that it includes food in it that causes inflammation in me.  That does not mean it will cause inflammation in you. Do yourself a favor.  After reading this blog -- click on the link to "Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead"  and  treat yourself to wonderful, informative film in the privacy of your home.  It's available on HULU as well as Amazon! I know that if you watch this movie -- you will thoroughly . . .

Enjoy!!!

Michele ♥


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10:32 am

The Raw Food Coach | 12 Days of Raw Christmas

A  RAWMAZING  Offer!!!
Holiday time can be such an overwhelming experience.  Too much to do, too little time to get it done.  The last thing you need to do is make yourself even more crazy if you're following a certain type of food lifestyle. Russell James, Raw Food Chef extraordinaire, peeked my interest by sending me an email offering me 12 Days of Raw Christmas Gifts!  The Raw Food Coach | 12 Days of Raw Christmas.  I'm into that, I thought!    I clicked on his offer, albeit a bit reluctantly, but I did click on it.  (By the way, if anyone is considering learning raw food techniques or mastering the skills they already have, Russell has an on-line course as well as a home study course, that may be the way to go.  He's offering 40% off now if anyone is interested). [caption id="attachment_993" align="aligncenter" width="180"]Russell James Raw Food Course DVD Russell James Raw Food Course DVD[/caption] Okay -- back to my 12 Day of  Raw Christmas.  So I clicked on it expecting a hitch.  And there was none!  It linked me up to an offer by Karen Knowler - The Raw Food Coach.   Within seconds of  clicking on Karen's offer, I received another email with my first download!  A 17-page ebook called "I'm Dreaming of a Deliciously Raw Christmas"!!  For FREE!!!!  I'm in heaven!!!  Also -- you can sign up anytime during the 12 days and STILL receive all of the free gifts!!!  This is a great place to start in accumulating your go-to Raw Recipes and how-to guides!! [caption id="attachment_994" align="aligncenter" width="119"]Karen Knowlers 12 Days Of Christmas Gifts Karen Knowlers 12 Days Of Christmas Gifts[/caption] Now, I know most people do not get as excited as I do about recipes.  I'm the type of person who can read a Cook Book as if it was the next great novel.  If I salivate -- I know it's a top seller.  And if they make the recipes easy to understand at a level that I can create them, then I have a winner on my hands!!  I also watch videos on how to prepare foods as if it was a Blockbuster Video.  It's just something that I truly enjoy doing -- sort of living vicariously through the experts and hoping that one day, I can achieve the same level of expertise.  I also love to share what I learn and hints and tips that I find.  So that is why I've decided to share this wonderful offer with all of you. I believe in sharing.  That is why I started this Blog.  What I love about the RAW community, is that people involved in it believe in sharing as well!  Therefore, I am sharing this free gift offer -- The Raw Food Coach/12 Days of Raw Christmas as well as recommending Russell James Raw Food Course  for you to check out and simplify your life when it comes to creating delicious, exciting raw food dishes!! When checking out new and exciting recipes, websites and Blogs -- the thing you must remember is to

Enjoy!

And

Have Fun!!

Wishing each and every one of you a very Happy And Healthy Holiday

And a Very Happy And Healthy New Year!!!!

Michele ♥


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12:03 pm

Workout Wednesday

Men Sweat - Women "Glisten" . . . NOT!!!!!

sweat crying

I'm a huge advocate of working out, getting moving and sweating -- at any fitness level from none to some to expert!!  Exercise improves mood, increases energy and stamina, reduces stress, helps aid in alleviating depression, helps control weight, promotes better sleep, improves ones sex life, and if you find the right type of exercise that you enjoy -- it can be fun!!  Try different types of exercises and see what you enjoy doing the most. Mostly, my workouts comprise of "moving"; not "lifting" or "straining".   That works best for me.   However, sometimes I just want to "switch it up", so I don't get bored.  I read an article on a Blog about a year ago about this  workout technique called "Tabata".  do-your-tabatas It's a 4 minute workout at 20 seconds intense training and 10 seconds of rest.   I thought this sounded fascinating!  I could give up 4 minutes of my life every day!   So I continued to google it (I'm going to change my name to Google Goot), and that's when I found videos made by Rebekah Boruki who started a Website,  Blog and Vlog called "BexLife". I immediately liked her method of teaching and her expertise.  She's not intimidating.  She does not yell in your face -- quite the opposite as a matter-of-fact and she performs the workouts for you as a guide.  I signed up right away for her videos.  I'm attaching one or two of her "Tabata" training for you to watch.  I'll share a couple of different ones  to watch and maybe try!  In all fairness to you, I should let you know that I haven't tried these  yet -- but it's on my list of things to do. Bex has come a long way in the short time that I signed up for these videos.  Originally, a yoga instructor and mother of 4, she has blossomed into a Spokesperson, Model and now TV personality.  I love watching her grow. Now Bex has started a new series on Learning How to Meditate.  Once again, she's peeked my curiosity.  How does one teach Meditation?  Don't you have to be quiet to meditate?  I watched the first one, then the second.  I thoroughly enjoyed it and even did it with her.  Four minutes -- that's all she asks.  And four minutes seems to be Bex's recurring theme whether it be for workouts or for meditation.  As I said before, everyone can find 4 minutes!!! Whether you're a seasoned athlete or just going to take your first step to health and wellness, find something you like, or try many different workout routines.  The main thing is that you just . . .

Enjoy!

Michele ♥


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9:24 am

Taco Tuesday

Viva Mexicana Raw Style!

When I started alleviating wheat, grains, soy, dairy, legumes, peanuts, processed sugar and alcohol from my life -- I needed to find recipes that would include the foods I could eat and that would be tasty and satisfying.  I know it sounds like giving up those 8 types of food, there's ABSOLUTELY NOTHING left to eat;  but believe me . . . there definitely is.  I also needed recipes that the whole family would enjoy and that I could package up and bring to work for lunch (or school). One of the first recipes I tried was  Diana Stobo's Taco's.  Summer-TacosI was so afraid to prepare this.  Anything new is intimidating and preparing "uncooked" foods with ingredients that you're not used to can be challenging.  When I checked her recipes, I found that I had most of the ingredients, plus I had the main kitchen tool which was a food processor.  Thank goodness an aunt of mine bought this for me 27 years ago as an "engagement" gift.  I probably used it a handful of times in the 27 years since.  Within the past year, however, I use it a couple of times per week. I like to get a different "spin" on recipes, so eventhough I have my "go-to" recipes -- I like to see if anyone is doing it a little differently.  It's nice to spice things up once in a while.  Here's a recipe from Sarah Britton.  She has a Blog called My New Roots .  She also includes a recipe for a Cashew Sour Cream and Salsa on the same page.   Make all three -- have a feast!!!!  [caption id="attachment_922" align="alignright" width="150"]Raw Tacos Raw Tacos[/caption] If you want to get adventurous (and I have NOT attempted these yet), I am including a recipe for RAW Taco Shells from Goddess In the Raw!  I plan on "attempting" to make these probably after the Holidays.  Keep in mind, you do need a food dehydrator which most people do not have.  I would not run out and buy one just for this recipe.  You can probably attempt to do this on the lowest setting of your oven and keeping the oven door ajar OR, I have found that my Convection Toaster Oven has  a "dehydrator" setting.  I haven't tried that yet.  Also as a side-note,  I bought my dehydrator at a Garage Sale for practically nothing.  I bought a bunch of stuff for about $25, so I would say my dehydrator cost less than $5. [caption id="attachment_925" align="aligncenter" width="150"]Raw Taco Shells Raw Taco Shells[/caption] Try making Taco's for yourself!  It's really easy, delicious and filling! Whichever recipe you choose to try (and you may have your own or search for another RAW Taco Recipe on the Internet) the most important thing is that you

Enjoy!

Michele ♥


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1:01 pm

The Healthy Way to Poop: How Position Can Affect Health | Wellness Mama

Elimination Sensation!!!!
Yes -- I'm going there!!  I didn't think I would, but actually, I feel this is an extremely important topic.  Poop, or any other name for it, is a huge subject for conversation.  People love discussing it; calling people "a piece of it";  Dr. Oz did an episode on it;  medical  journals are written on it;  well -- people are just fascinated by it in general.  What goes in MUST come out -- eventually.time to poop A good "elimination" can make your day -- just as a bad one could ruin your day.  Some could be used as "floating devices" while others will sink as fast as the Titanic!  People can be made to feel inferior if they don't have the quantity or quality of  what is typically recommended for a "normal, healthy, regular bowl movement".  It's even become acceptable dinner conversation amongst "good" friends!   My friends anyway!!! Well, if you don't feel bad enough -- here's more "logs" to add to the fire.  Apparently, we haven't been moving our bowls correctly for the past 100 or so years, since the invention of the "potty" or the toilet bowl.  Who knew???!!!!! Case in point -- pre-toilet man.  How did they eliminate?  They "Squatted"!  Animals -- how do they eliminate?  They Squat!!!  Babies and toddlers?  How do they do it?  Once again -- they Squat!  Post toilet man?  How do they eliminate   They  SIT!  Hence -- according to some -- there is where the problem lies!  Modern man (in the U.S. anyway) -- does not eliminate properly, nor do they eliminate entirely because of the fact that we SIT,  instead of Squat, to get our business done. Case in point:  In the article  "The Scoop About Poop"  from the website Integrative Wellness Center , they explain anything I, and probably you, need to know about "Poop".  There are many arguments singing the praises of "Squatting" vs.  "Sitting"  and because of the interest and the research being done on this particular topic -- a couple of different manufacturers have created versions of  "a squatting device". I've been reading about this concept now for about 6 months, and I must admit that I'm intrigued by it.  I've pondered posting about it, but wondered how I would handle this delicate subject.  Then last Sunday, one of my all-time favorite bloggers actually did do a post on it.  A company called Instant Karma who manufactures "The Squatty Potty"  asked "The Wellness Mama" to test drive and write a review on their product.  She did and wrote about it this past week.  Below is the link to that.  I feel she did a great job in reviewing it mixing facts with humor!!  See below: The Healthy Way to Poop: How Position Can Affect Health | Wellness Mama I also came across another manufacturer who also provides a "Squatty Potty" and thought that I should include them in this post as well.   It's from the website www.cleasingwaters.com and they too, explain the importance of Proper Elimination.   Please keep in mind that I am not endorsing, selling or taking a kickback from any of these companies.  I'm just putting my findings out there for you to read. If talking about bodily functions bothers you, you may choose to skip today's Blog.  However, if you like learning new things and new concepts -- go ahead and read it!  Print it out and bring it into the bathroom with you!  But if you do -- the most important thing is that you read it and

Enjoy!

Michele ♥


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12:14 pm

Raw Food Made Easy!!!

Raw Foods = Minus Burns!
When writing my Blog, I rely on many of my RAW Enthusiasts for information, guidance, expertise, etc.  I realize that "uncooking" could get confusing.   Sometimes, there's a lot of  preparation, organization and processes that may include a 4-24 hour span. I emailed Jenny Cornbleet the other day to ask her something and we got to talking.  What I did not realize is that Jenny's  recipes are only for  "quick and easy" raw meals.  Nothing dehydrated whatsoever (which could take 4-24 hours).  What an amazing concept!   Here's some background information on Jenny's qualifications:
Jennifer Cornbleet  is the best-selling author and raw food chef and instructor. She is the author of best-selling Raw Food Made Easy for 1 or 2 People and Raw for Dessert: Easy Delights for Everyone  and is a faculty instructor at the Living Light Culinary Arts Institute in Fort Bragg, CA. Her first book, Raw Food Made Easy for 1 or 2 People,  is a best-selling vegetarian recipe book.  The revised and expanded edition just came out.   Her recipes are centered around a raw vegan diet, a dietary movement that encourages the use of raw ingredients over processed or cooked ones, with the goal of achieving maximum health benefits. The recipes featured in Cornbleet’s books do not use meat, fish, poultry, or dairy products, and focus entirely on fruits, vegetables, and nuts and seeds.
[caption id="attachment_875" align="alignleft" width="128"]Jennifer Cornbleets Raw Food Made Easy Jennifer Cornbleets Raw Food Made Easy[/caption] If anyone is considering improving their health while gaining  stamina and energy by going "RAW", but didn't know where to start -- you MUST check out Jennifer Cornbleet's You Tube Channel (and "like" it)!  This is "free" information put on the internet for our benefit.  Take advantage of this!  Watch and learn. That's basically how I started.  I didn't know there was a Culinary Institute that taught RAW living!  I researched everything on the web, watch YouTube videos for instruction, went to the library and took out books.    Anyone who is a friend of mine of FB or has "Liked" my Rejuvenation And Wellness (RAW) Facebook page knows that I like to share contests, giveaways or special deals from my RAW Inner Circle.  Everyone should take advantage of those!! For those of you who would like to get a little more serious in taking control of your health and wellness -- Jennifer offers a course on line.  You can find it here at  www.RawFoodOnlineCourse.com. I will let you know about a special discount offer in January  for those interested in taking the course.  Stay tuned for details because I will definitely be sharing that information with you. However you decide to start your journey into just remember to

Enjoy!

Michele ♥


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12:50 pm

Benefits of Eating Raw AND Eating Paleo

big-benefitsIt's Not "Either OR" -- both ways have their benefits!

Alleviating Wheat, Grains, Soy, Dairy, Legumes, Peanuts, Processed Sugar and Alcohol
The concept of eating raw or Paleo is based on alleviating foods that can cause inflammation on your joints or in your gut.  These inflammation-causing  foods are "wheat, grains, soy, dairy, legumes, peanuts, processed sugar and alcohol".  Once I alleviated them from my diet -- I became healthier and more energized within 3 days.   Either form of eating works for me.  They both are based on the sound principals of eating whole, unprocessed, natural foods.   When you read about the concepts behind eating raw or eating Paleo -- both sides make good points.   It's up to you to decide what works best for you. I personally enjoy the raw lifestyle.  What I like about it is that it's your choice to do it 100% or less.  As I've said many times in my posts -- I choose to eat 85-95% raw which leaves me 5%-15% of cooked foods.   If I eat something that I know causes inflammation -- I know that I will suffer.  I use my "knees" as my barometer when  eating incorrectly.  They will start to ache and usually keep me up at night.  I know, however, once I get back on track - all pains in my knees will disappear. I decided to post a couple of opposing sides views between eating Raw and eating Paleo.

Eating Raw

10 Reasons Eating Raw is Healthier For You and the Planet

Read what Jonathan Mead wrote about going raw:
Article by Zen Habits contributor Jonathan Mead; follow him on twitter.
At the beginning of the new year I decided to go Raw for 30 days. I’ve always been interested in eating a raw diet, but never had the guts to completely jump in and do it. I would eat raw for breakfast and lunch most days but would break down at dinner time and eat cooked food. I was eating about 60-80% raw, I just needed the extra push to move to eating 100% raw vegan food. I decided the best way to know if something is all it’s cracked up to be is to try it. At the very worst if it doesn’t work out you can always go back, right? What I found is that eating raw is not only easy to do, but makes you feel amazing. It wasn’t easy to resist eating cooked foods at first. Just like breaking any habit, it takes time and persistence. Most of all, it helps to simply take it one day at a time and focus on only one goal. For the new year I decided not to make any other resolutions or goals, but to simply eat a raw vegan diet for 30 days. Here are just a few things I’ve learned:
  1. Live foods. It’s common sense right? A cooked seed won’t grow, but a raw seed will. Heating food over 118 degrees Fahrenheit destroys much of the nutrients in your food. Cooking food also diminishes the natural life energy. I’d rather put living food in my body.
  2. Enzymes. Cooking food destroys much of the natural enzymes(your body can also create enzymes, but can only do so much) in your food that are needed to break down nutrients. Eating raw eliminates this problem.
  3. Insane energy. You won’t know this unless you try it for yourself, but eating raw gives you an amazing boost in energy. I used to get tired around 2 or 3pm during the day. Now I simply don’t have that problem. When I do get tired, it doesn’t last nearly as long and an orange or apple will recharge me within a few minutes.
  4. Better sleep and less sleep needed. I’ve slept better than ever while eating raw. But most importantly, I don’t wake up feeling tired or groggy anymore. On most days, I wake up feeling full of energy.
  5. Increased mental clarity. Eating raw has helped me focus on the things that are important and made me more emotionally in tune with others. I feel like a wall of fog has been removed in my mind. It’s easier to think clearly and focus for long periods of time.
  6. Eat as much as you want. This isn’t really a health benefit, but it is pretty awesome. I never get that uncomfortable full feeling eating raw. You know where you have to unbutton the top button on your pants and take a nap? I don’t get that. I can eat as much as I want, and while I will feel full, I don’t feel weighed down or tired.
  7. Less cleanup. Simply put, there aren’t many dishes to wash when you eat fruit and vegetables. Although if you do compost (like I do), you’ll probably have to do it more often.
  8. No packaging. Eating raw means less packaging all around (well, I guess you could argue that banana and orange peels are “packaging”). This means less trash in a landfill and more room in your cupboards. Win/win for everyone.
  9. More regularity. You should naturally have around two to three bowel movements a day. If you’re going less than that, it probably means your intestines are unhealthily clogged. A raw diet gives you more than enough fiber to keep you regular.
  10. Connection with the earth. Eating food that’s been freshly picked just feels different. You feel more connected to the earth and more grounded. Eating lots of processed foods — frozen or from a box — makes creates more of a gap and leaves you feeling disconnected from the earth that sustains you.
I could not have said this better -- and I've tried.  Jonathan hits the nail on the head!

Paleo

This explanation is from Shape Magazine.  I thought the 5 bullets they provided gave a quick and concise explanation.  This article was written by Jennipher Walters.
The Paleo Diet has been called the caveman (or cavewoman diet, in this case) diet with good reason: it's based on the diet that our primal ancestors lived on back before wheat was harvested and there was a McDonald's in every town. While there are definitely cons to the Paelo Diet, there are also some health benefits to eating like humans did 10,000 years ago. Below are some benefits! 5 Paleo Diet Health Benefits 1. It's unprocessed. Simply put, cavewoman didn't have to worry about eating organic because everything was organic and natural without preservatives and artificial ingredients. Following the Paleo Diet helps you to eat a clean diet. 2. It reduces bloat. Want flatter abs? Reduce bloat by getting more fiber, drinking water and avoiding salt.  All principles of the Paleo Diet! 3. It's high in fruits and vegetables. Besides protein, the majority of the Paleo Diet eating plan is made up of a diet rich in fruits and vegetables. Getting five a day in is no problem! 4. It's high in healthy fats. The Paleo Diet is high in omega-3 rich fish and nuts. These protein sources are full of healthy fats! 5. It's filling. This nutrient-rich diet plan is also quite filling. Between the proteins, the healthy fats and the fruits and veggies, it's hard to go hungry. Jennipher Walters is the CEO and co-founder of the healthy living websites FitBottomedGirls.com and FitBottomedMamas.com. A certified personal trainer, lifestyle and weight management coach and group exercise instructor, she also holds an MA in health journalism and regularly writes about all things fitness and wellness for various online publications.
Play around on the computer.  Google both eating raw and The Paleo Diet.  See if any of it makes sense to you.  Try out some simple recipes.  But remember, whatever you decide to choose . . . just . . .

Enjoy!

Michele ♥


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2:10 pm

Mangia Monday

What to Make
Okay -- so the weekend's over and it's Monday again.  Usually, by Sunday, I'm pretty confident that I know what I'm going to make the first couple days of the week.  I still have to make  3 breakfasts and 2 lunches (sometimes 3) and I have to be sure that I have the ingredients to prepare whatever it is I'm going to prepare. This Monday -- I didn't do any of that.  So I needed to figure out what I can make with whatever ingredients I have floating around the house.  Breakfast is covered,  I made sure that I had enough fruit and greens to make morning smoothies.  I keep frozen fruit in the freezer.  It's a great thing to add to your smoothies.  Then you don't have to add ice.
Breakfast
My Morning Smoothie [caption id="attachment_775" align="alignright" width="104"]Green Smoothie Green Smoothie[/caption] 1 banana 1 1/2 cups frozen fruit (today was strawberry, pineapple and mango) 2 pitted Medjool dates (I like my smoothie sweet -- you can omit) 1-2 cups kale 1 tsp dried wheat grass (wheat grass actually turns out to be sweet) 1/2 tsp Maca Powder (excellent 'power boast' to add.  Smells like chocolate to me). *3 cups water (any liquid you prefer . . . herbal tea, almond milk, coconut milk, coconut water, unsweetened juice). Whirl up in your blender or Vitamix and enjoy! *I added a little more water because I like my smoothies a little thinner.  This way, I get to take the leftovers to work for my snack. ** Feel free to alter any smoothie to your personal taste.
Lunch
I had all the ingredients for my Spicy Thai Noodles, but I also had the ingredients for this Avocado Soup from Raw on $10 a day.
Lunch Avocado Soup 2 servings ~ $1.52 per serving1 avocado ($1.49) 1 cup nut milk ($.40) 2/3 cup water 1 onion ($.25) 1 clove garlic ($.10) 1/2 red bell pepper ($.40) 2 tbsp pumpkin seeds (pepitas) ($.30) 1 tsp olive oil ($.10) salt & pepper to tasteAvocado soups are among my favorite raw soups, and the options are pretty much endless.For this soup, which makes two large servings, place a peeled avocado, half an onion, and the clove of garlic in a blender. Puree until very smooth.Add the chopped onion and pepper, and sprinkle with pepitas.
calories: 301 fat: 21 gr carbs: 28 gr protein: 6 gr
Don't these photos look AMAZING??!!!!!
 
Snacks
I always try to keep a handful of snacks around, because if I don't, I go into a panic!!!  I MAY STARVE!!!!  I throw them into my bag or keep them in a fridge at work.   This is usually what I bring:
  • Leftover Smoothie from the morning or Green Juice
  • I make my own trail mix using nuts, seeds and raisins.  A couple of handfuls of each thrown into a baggie.
  • Fresh fruits (I keep a small bottle of cinnamon at work to add to fruit for added benefits and flavors)
  • Fresh cut veggies like carrots, celery and peppers
  • tea bags - green and herbal
  • lots and lots of water -- I drink all day long
Dinner
Dinner in my house is a lot more complicated.  I personally don't have to eat, I can pick.  I'm fine making a green smoothie and calling that my dinner.  Or eating 1/2 an avocado with cherry "grape" tomatoes and some other raw veggies hanging around.  Or sometimes I'll just make a plate of olives with kimchii and sauerkraut sprinkled with nutritional yeast.   I know -- sound AMAZING!  Doesn't it?  Well -- that's  how it goes over in my house as well - no one really wants to eat that.  And then I will  have a banana for dessert or a couple of Medjool dates. However, on a very rare occasion, I will  make something that everyone will eat.  I feel that dinner recipes require more time and more preparation, so I will probably pick a few dinner recipes and post them on a future Blog.   If you're new to eating "uncooked" foods, some of the techniques can be overwhelming and seem complicated to you.  However, once you master some of the techniques, it becomes a breeze.  As for now, my secret is to eat what ever you have around -- or making double breakfasts and lunches and have that as your dinner.  Or have someone take you out to a wonderful restaurant and just have a delicious salad! Whatever you choose to make and however you choose to eat it, the most important thing is that you just .  .  .

Enjoy!

Michele ♥


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