Friday, November 30, 2012

Can I Eat Cooked Food Sometimes?

There are a number of reasons that a person may decide to go raw vegan. Perhaps you've chosen this path because you want to be skinnier. Maybe you'd like to look vibrant and healthy. You might want endless energy. Maybe you were attracted at the idea of never getting sick. Or perhaps, you're in it for the benefits it offers to your athletic performance. My personal favorite result of low fat, high carb, raw veganism is the mental stability, clearness, and happiness that I have experienced.

Needless to say, there are a lot of different reasons that a person might choose to follow a raw path.

There is nothing like raw and it is absolutely worth every sacrifice you have to make to get there! However, staying 100% raw is sometimes a challenge - in terms of convienience, habits, addictions, and social situations. Most raw vegans have in some instant wished or wondered whether they could get the results that the want from raw veganism, and still occasionallu eat some cooked food. (After all, we've all been taught that moderation is key! Haha.)

Well, absolutely. If you feel like you need or want to eat cooked food, experiment with it and see what works for you. (One example I often use, is that I drink not-from-concentrate Florida's Natural orange juice very liberally, and have never noticed negative results.) If you do choose to go the route of eating some cooked food, I do have a few pointers and tips you may want to at least read over and consider:

1) Always stay vegan. No matter how bad you miss meat, or how much want to be inconspicuous in social situations, in my opinion, vegan is absolutely non-negotiable.
Animal foods are severly acidifying to the body, which encourages cancer cell growth. They have also been linked to obesity, heart disease, diabetes, and other scary, chronic diseases. They are high in fats and protiens and low in carbohydrates and micronutrients. (And I'm not even going to go into the effects of animal consumption on the environment, the animals, and the starving inhabitants of Africa who are being exploited.)
I do not believe that meats have anything to offer the body, that we cannot get from whole plant foods.

2) You may not feel well constantly switching from raw to cooked and back again - you might find yourself in some sort of unpleasant limbo of constant detox or something of the sort. Just be aware of this.

3) I definitely suggest you stay away from salt (this can be very hard if you're trying to just eat what everyone else is eating/for social reasons, because it would seem that the entire world is addicted to this drug, and doesn't even realize it. As you may or may not know, salt is an excitotoxin (I don't actually know what that means in itself lol.) but, I know that what it does is 'excite' your tastebuds so that you taste flavors more vividly - however, it leaves tastebuds damaged, so that you are less able to taste flavor the next time you eat - therefore, you need more and more salt each time, for flavor....kind of the same way a heroin or cocaine user needs to increase the amount of drug that he's consuming to get the high he wants and to fulfil his addiction.
In addition, I'm sure you know that salt is cellular poison and dehydrates your body (this is why we have used it to preserve foods for hundreds of years). Bloating and other problems are the result of your body trying to protect itself from this damaging drug.

4) Stay away from wheat. It's addictive, refined, and the gluten makes you feel like crap.

5) Obviously, not all cooked foods are created equal. Try to keep it low fat, whole plant based, high carb. Baking, frying, grilling creates carcinogens. Steamed and boiled foods are always best.
Cooked veggies and tubers are the most ideal. Rice and other whole grains are acceptable. Legumes will give you toxic gas and stuff, they're hard to digest. Refined foods like bread and pasta are..well, refined.

Good luck!

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Spiced Dates

I've got a delicious holiday recipe to share! It's perfect as a meal, as a desert, and it would be a lovely, easy little treat to pass at holiday parties with all your SAD friends!

It's also a fantastic way to pack in the carbs if you don't have a lot of time, and (like me) can't bring yourself just eat plain dates.

The ingredients include:
—500cal worth of dates (that'll be about 25 deglet noir or khadrawys, or 10 medjools)
—2tbsp dried, flaked, unsweetened coconut
—¼tsp fresh orange zest
—1tsp cinnamon
—1tsp ginger

Throw all ingredients in a blender and blend until everything is chopped up pretty finely and well-mixed. Pour into bowl, eat as is, or roll into nice little balls or press together and cut into bars or chunks. They're awesome served with caffeine-free tea (my personal favorite is a Lemon Zinger). Enjoy! 

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Happy Thanksgiving!

Hope everybody (in the US) had an awesome, cruelty free Thanksgiving! I know I did. I just wanna share some pictures of my high-carb, low-fat, salt-free, whole plant food vegan (not raw, though) thanksgiving dinner!

Here's my pumpkin pie pudding, chillin' next to everybody else's!
Basically just roasted pumpkin pureed and blended with dates (soaked in water a few hours), and pumpkin pie spice, to taste.
On top is some delicious, creamy coconut milk (which is basically the consistency of whipping cream).

And here's my dinner! Fruit salad, squash, steamed brussels sprouts, more fruit salad, a baked sweet potato, and cranberries! All made from whole plant foods, without salt. All the 'side dishes' everybody else was eating and loving!

I love being a raw vegan, but I think sharing some traditional cooked foods with my family on special occasions is really awesome. I don't get to share meals with people a lot, because my family are a bunch of omnivores; so I think I'm missing out on an element of social life that a lot of people take for granted. Therefore, on the few occasions that I do compromise and eat some (still delicious) cooked foods, I really enjoy eating what everybody else is eating and sharing.

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

The Teaching Of Buddha

Buddha first taught himself to avoid the sin of killing any living creature, he wished that all people might know the blessedness of a long life.
Buddha trained himself to avoid the sin of stealing, he wished that all people might have everything they needed.
Buddha trained himself to avoid ever committing adultery, he wished that all people might know the blessedness of a pure spirit and not suffer from insatiable desires.
Buddha, aiming at his ideal, trained himself to remain free from all deception, he wished all people to know the tranquility of mind that would follow in speaking the truth.
He trained himself to avoid double-talk; he wished that all people might know the joy of fellowship.
He trained himself to avoid abusing others, and then he wished that all might have the same serene mind that would follow by living in peace with others.
He kept himself free of idle talk, and then wished that all might know the blessedness of sympathetic understanding.
Buddha, aiming at his ideal, trained himself to keep free from greed, and by this virtuous deed he wished that all people might know the peacefulness that would go with this freedom.
He trained himself to avoid anger, and he wished that all people might love one another... 

I love this excerpt from "The Teaching Of Buddha." I think it's a great reminder that if we see something wrong with the world, change yourself accordingly, and then you will become part of the solution. Like Gandhi's quote, "be the change you want to see in the world."

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

LFRV Chocolate Icecream?!

Today for lunch, I've got a huge (24oz!) tub of chocolate icecream... Fat free, guilt free, and cruelty free! Vegans can't eat anything? Bullshiiit!

The recipe is super simple (and delicious, and totally the consistency of icecream!) :
—8 frozen bananas (chunked)
—8 dates
—½c carob powder
—⅓c water (if using blender)

Blend all ingredients in a blender (or with icecream maker? I assume it would work, I don't have one so I don't know.)

That's it! Enjoy!

(Recipe is best if eaten right after making it.)

I blog with BE Write

Saturday, November 3, 2012

Keepin' It Frugal On LFRV!

This article is for those of you who are young and can't afford to spend $100 on food per week. This article is for people who think spending such a huge amount of money just to eat raw foods is ridiculous. This article is for those SAD eater who say that they won't switch because organic vegan foods are so expensive. This article is for anybody who is already eating a low fat, high carb, raw plant-based diet and wants to explore ways to eat more cheaply on this diet.

I am a 16-year-old in High School, and I only have $40-$50 to spend on fruit each week.

I eat loads of bananas, because truthfully, they're pretty much the only thing I an afford to eat significant quantities of (especially in the winter). I don't really like bananas much at all, and contemplated, at one point, going back to cooked vegan in lieu of living on bananas...but I just absolutely didn't want all the bloating and gas and constipation and apathy and lack of energy that comes with cooked every time I try. HCRV is like golden handcuffs.. Now that you've tried it, you can never leave. Because its just too good.

So, I finally gave in and started making smoothies... I'm so glad, it really helps, and they're actually super delicious! Right now (I know it's bad food combining, but,) I've been making banana-OJ-frozen strawberry smoothies. Super cheap and utterly delicious. Sometimes I put chopped dates on top. Its an easy way to add calories and...yum! Extra sweetness.
Another nummy way to eat bananas (and making sure you always have ripe, raw calories in the house!) is letting them ripen, and then freezing them! Throw 'em in the blender with some dates and carob, makes a perfect chocolate icecream....guilt free! (;

Also, make sure you're eating plenty of greens, especially if you are eating mostly just dates and bananas. I find that it helps my appetite for these sweet foods. Especially on a limited budget, you'll probably want to grow your own (since there's no way you'll be able to afford organic greens, and there's generally a lot of pesticides in the conventional stuff). This is not hard to do, even if you live in a cold climate! Just put some big pots of dirt by a window, and sprinkle salad mix seeds - and a few days later, they'll start sprouting! They'll keep producing as you cut them, so it's super easy! Just make sure to keep them watered, and maybe put some compost on occasionally, to make sure they don't use up the nutrients in the soil (:

 So yeah, buying conventional produce and bananas from Kwik Trip, I'm living on $6 per day - that's less than most people on SAD!

An additional tip for young people: Ask your parents how much they spend on food for a week for your family. Then divide that by the number of people in your family - ask them if they can just give you your share of your families food budget to spend on your own food - if you're determined, you will learn to budget it correctly to get enough calories and make raw veganism work for you.

Peace, and good luck to all!