Wednesday, June 21, 2017

No More Excuses / Raw Corn Salsa

Travis bought these pretty Vinca's yesterday for our deck.  

 Hygienic principles are not such lofty principles that we must wait until some future time when the majority come to accept them and agree with them.  These principles are for us to use here and now.  You can't wait to change your own lifestyle until "everyone else" agrees.  It is not important what the masses of people believe and want to hear.  When you step up and began to embody the simple, natural lifestyle, it may well encourage someone else.

Even though your circumstances are not perfect, and misinformation abounds, you don't need to feel like you are a prisoner to culture.  I have used that as an excuse before, but no more excuses!! Take responsibility for your own health and lifestyle no matter what most people are doing. Raise the bar for everyone by showing a better way.  We already have access to enough knowledge, if we seek it out, to help us live happier and healthier than before.

Yum, My favorite!!!

It's easy to make ridiculously delicious raw food recipes when you use bases of nuts and seeds, avocados, and salt, but that is not where the real healing is found. The body will heal much better and faster on low fat.

Today was our raw food potluck.  I love this group of people, and the food is delicious, BUT most everyone is bringing something that will appeal to everyone.  It is mostly highly seasoned and loaded in fats.  After the raw food potluck, I always want to go lie down and rest.  So while the raw food potluck is fun, it is not the way I want to eat everyday.  My goal for next month is to find some low fat raw food dishes to share.

Raw foods group.

Here is my favorite dish I served today, and it does qualify as low fat. I made this the night before, except for the tomatoes, and let it sit in the refrigerator.  I added the tomatoes this morning.

Raw Corn Salsa

1 package of frozen whole kernel corn, thawed
Juice of 2 limes
1/2 tsp pepper
Diced red onion
1 pint of cherry tomatoes, quartered
A little dried cilantro (or you can use some fresh)
            - Mix all together and serve.

This is a good no fat salad dressing from Tannyraw that you can make in a high speed blender.

1 carrot
2 stalks celery
2 stalks green onion
1 mango, cut off the seed
Juice of 1/2 lemon
1 tsp. of lemon pepper or other spice (opt)
2 handfuls of cherry tomatoes.
       Add a little water if needed for the consistency you want.
       Blend and serve with your salad.

I have a Vitamix blender which I have had for several years. If you can't buy a $500 blender right now, use the blender or food processor you already have.  Start where you are.


You can follow this blog on my Facebook page Simple Raw and Natural.

To health and happiness.

Tuesday, June 20, 2017

Autoimmune Healing

Let's talk about healing autoimmune disorders.  Low fat vegan is the best way to heal any disease.

If your experience is like mine, you grew up eating hot dogs, boxed cereal, grilled cheese sandwiches, and such. In my family, we got Shipley's donuts every Sunday and had Fizzies to drink with our meals.  I loved them, but I don't think they loved me back.   Fizzies Drink

I have detested milk since I was 8 months old, so I dodged that bullet. My mother loved to cook, so we had the pleasure of her wonderful cooking...always with white Wonder Bread as an accompaniment.

Even as a child, my body was reacting to this diet. When I was nine years old, I was in the hospital with something that some called pneumonia and some called consumption.  I was sick for a whole summer and was given massive doses of antibiotics.  My body would erupt with boils which we called risons, and once with a carbuncle on my lip.

During my teen years, I had other dietary issues as my mom struggled to feed us on a waitress salary in our small southern town. During this time, we survived on partly southern cooking, partly Cokes and peanuts, and partly doing without.

But it was as I got older that the accumulation of uneliminated toxins began to manifest as disease. The doctors never gave a name to my symptoms, but they were legion. I had lower back pain and a stiff neck for months.  I could not sleep. I had plantar fasciitis. At various times I would have symptoms of a heart attack, but when I would go to the emergency room my heart was okay. I had a sensation of not being able to swallow. A twitch developed in my eye. My kidney hurt. I had no energy.  I was taking drugs for the symptoms, and I was getting worse every day.

My story turned around in the emergency room one day as I lay there, unable to breathe or swallow.  The doctor was not any help at all.  My daughter had arrived and was sitting with me. I told her, "They don't know". I told the doctor I was better and perhaps the sensation of not being able to swallow was from a medication I was taking. I left the hospital that day and have not been back to the doctor since then for anything other than blood tests.  And that is when I began in earnest to look for alternatives.

One particular night when I felt like my kidney would rupture and I would die, I prayed for wisdom to know what to do.  The answer came in the form of a strong thought the next morning, "Get out your Fit for Life books.  I found both of my books, Fit For Life and Fit For Life II, and began to read. I bought a juicer and changed my diet. I also began looking for a Natural Hygiene practitioner via the internet which led me to Dr. John Fielder, who runs the Clohesy River Health Farm near Cairns, Australia.  I have now studied with Dr. Fielder for several years and have interned at his farm for five months.

I sincerely want to help people. If you have a disease, and you are eating a normal American diet, then going low fat vegan will help you improve.  If you don't get the results you want then you will need to increase the percentage of low fat raw vegan food.  80% raw is a good percentage to aim for, but if you still have problems you will have to raise that percentage even higher.

Some people make the mistake of going raw but fall into the trap of using too many fats. I have done that myself. You can make delicious, exotic raw food using bases made of nuts and seeds and coconuts and avocados.  But for optimal healing, the holy grail is low fat high carb raw vegan. If you want to heal from chronic diseases, including autoimmune disorders, this will give you the best chance of success.

It takes some time.  It took the disease many years to manifest with chronic symptoms, and it will take time to eliminate it. But the good news is that you will begin to improve immediately.

I will be sharing some menu plans and recipes with you, although, I do not like to make exotic, complicated raw dishes. For everyday, I usually eat about the same thing everyday, but for our raw food potlucks I like to make something special.  I will share those recipes, too.

Don't give up. There is a way to be better. Fruits and vegetables are everywhere. You can order a big salad at the restaurant and tell them specifically what you want on it.

Start where you are and don't worry about comparing yourself to where someone else is on their journey.  This is your journey to walk out for yourself.  You can change your diet and lifestyle and change your life. No question about it.  You have to change your thought patterns and your lifestyle or you won't change at all. All the talk about gradual change and transitional dieting is just a smoke screen for procrastination. You either change now or you don't change at all. The possibilities are here and now, not in the future.  So let's do it!

Dinner.  The green salad is baby lettuces from the farmer's market, cucumber, Bubbies dill pickle, green onions, tomatoes, and black pepper.  The dressing is wine vinegar, dijon mustard, and Worcestershire sauce
The soup on the side is the blended salad recipe I linked to in yesterday's blog.
Also, I had Edwards rice crackers and dried prunes for dessert.

Walking the dog.  Walking is good exercise which is crucial for healing.

To health and happiness.

Monday, June 19, 2017

Low Fat Raw Vegan Diet

Based on my experience, our best shot for optimum health in the climate and culture in which we are living is the high carb low fat raw vegan diet in conjunction with a simple, natural, biogenic lifestyle that harmonizes with natural law.

It is my desire to help people by sharing the diet and lifestyle that helped me lose 40 lbs. and to heal from an undiagnosed debilitating condition that left me making multiple trips to the emergency room and doctor's office. I was at the point of not being able to function and had almost given up hope of every being able to recover.  I was almost bed-ridden.

I have been eleven years on this quest for health via natural living, diet, and raw foods. My plan is to share even more lifestyle tips, exercise tips, and recipes.  I was 58 years old when I began this journey, and I am 69 years old now. It has not been a straight path, because I have stumbled many times, but, nevertheless, I am still here, still standing, and determined to carry on.  I want to encourage you that if you are ill and/or older in years, this manner of living will work for you and give you the best chance of a healthier life.

Common sense tells us that the concepts taught in Natural Hygiene regarding living the simple, natural lifestyle are true, but, even so, most people are not ready to receive them.

Change is difficult because we have been programmed to think a certain way. These habitual patterns are not easy to break, because they give us a sense of belonging, comfort, and security; however, they also shield us from new ideas and new ways of doing things. Most people resist change, because it interferes with their perception of "reality".

For several days I have been meditating for an hour first thing in the morning and then walking four miles.  Today I began to train for a 5K race using the 5K Runner app. After my training session, I continued with my walking in order to get in my 4 miles.  It will be fun if some of my friends or family would also like to train to run some 5K races.  My inspiration is coming partly from reading A Race for Life by Ruth E. Heidrich, PhD.

My food for this morning :  mangoes, watermelon; celery spears; lemonade; green smoothies.

In a quart jar squeeze the juice of one lemon.  Add 1 Tbsp. stevia or other sweetener and water.

1 can coconut water
2 scoops chia seeds
3 handfuls of kale
3 bananas
almost a pint of blueberries
frozen mixed fruit to fill up the blender
     -Blend until smooth and serve.


This afternoon I plan to make some dehydrated crackers for our raw foods potluck on Wednesday.
Here is the recipe I plan to use, although I will probably double it.

1/4 cup ground flax seeds
2 cups frozen whole kernel corn, thawed
1 large onion
3 Tbsp. lemon juice
     Blend all together in the Vitamix.  Add a little water if necessary in order to get it to blend.
     Pour onto Teflex sheets on your dehydrator trays and score to make the crackers easier to break apart.
     Dehydrate at 110-115 degrees until the crackers are firm enough to flip over.
     Flip over on a dehydrator without a Teflex sheet and continue dehydrating until they are crispy.

My plan for dinner is a big green salad, the blended salad recipe I have posted before, and some crackers.  Cooked foods will be leftover garbanzo beans and roasted potatoes in case anyone feels like they need something cooked.

Here is a link to a blog post with the blended salad recipe.

To health and happiness.

Monday, May 22, 2017

Eliminating Stress and Raspberry Mango Ice Cream

Stress is a big factor in health and healing.  While communicating with a friend the other day and giving her a list of the principles to practice in order to regain her health, she said, "You said eliminate all stress".  Out of all the things on the list, this one stood out as being the most difficult to achieve.

It is possible to eliminate a great deal of the negative stress you experience.  When I was given this principle, I was addicted to the news and was worrying every day on how my "party" could take over and make the world better.  How was I to eliminate stress?  I looked around at my then five-year-old granddaughter and asked myself, "What is she worrying about?"   I decided to be like her, so I turned off the news, exited my attachment to either major political party, and put my focus on things within my control.  I honestly believe, that the other things will take care of themselves if we do the work on ourselves.  Change yourself...change the world.

Another way to eliminate stress is to let go of placing expectation on other people.  It is a great source of stress when you are trying to make other people do or be a certain way.  It is manipulative, and it is stress producing for you and them.  Place your expectations on yourself to make the world better by making yourself better...and healthier.

According to Dr. Keki Sidhwa, in his wonderful book, The Quintessence of Natural Living for Health and Happiness, we can take control of our lives by seeking variety and not letting ourselves get into a rut and by being interested in life.  It helps to be poised and cheerful.  We can learn to take what life brings, whether it be joy or sorrow, good or bad, with calmness.

It is important not to bottle up our emotions.  Exercise is a good release of the frustrations and anxiety that may show up. Regular exercise makes us stronger and, at the same time, releases emotional tension.

It is okay to be assertive and speak up against injustice and unfairness in a quiet and dignified the right time, in the right way, to the right person.  We can let out steam without scorching the other. We are hoping to reach a stage of mental composure so that we can deal with our irritations in a dignified way.

Time management is important in eliminating stress. You can't be in two places at the same time, and you can't do two things at the same matter what they say about multi-tasking. If you try it, you will wear yourself out.  We need to make the best use of the time we have and set our priorities to do the most important things....the things that have the most potential...first.

In Natural Hygiene, we talk about enervation playing a factor in illness. Excess stimulation produces stress and is enervating.  Entertainment that has loud or discordant noises, violence, crime and tragedy induces stress.

Regularly schedule 30 minutes or an hour of quiet time where you can pray, meditate, or walk. This is one of the practices for a healthy lifestyle.

Practice seeing only the good in all around you and turn a blind eye to the bad. Stop judging. A positive attitude is essential for eliminating stress.It is a complete change in lifestyle that focuses on concern for the needs of others. Hate causes stress and love eliminates it. What if you really did love your neighbor as yourself?

One of the main qualities needed for coping with stress is gratitude. Always think of how you can be thankful. Give up trying to get revenge.

Exercise and meditation are two sides of the same coin. Kevin Black, from Unlabel Yourself, reminded us this morning that the body benefits from movement and the mind benefits from stillness. To be whole, we must take care of our body and our mind.

We are here to grow in love. That is our challenge, and to live the simple natural lifestyle is part of answering that challenge. It is a simple way of living powerfully.

So let's just do it!

Here is a simple recipe for you...two ingredients...a real treat:

1 package frozen raspberries
2 packages frozen mango

Let the raspberries thaw, then blend until liquidy.  Put in a bowl and set aside.

Place the frozen mangos in your high speed blender or food processor.  Add just enough water to make it blend.  Blend until creamy.

Put some of the raspberry on the bottom of your serving bowl.  In a mixing bowl, mix  the rest of the raspberry in with the mango until it is marbelized.  Put the mango/raspberry mix in the bowl that has the  raspberry bottom.

Keep in the freezer until ready to serve.

To health and happiness.

Thursday, May 4, 2017

Planning a Trip

Herbs for the Green Smoothies!

I met my sister, Sheila, and my friend, Rebecca, at Barnes and Noble in Little Rock to have a little trip planning meeting.  Whenever I anticipate the trip, it makes me feel happy.  Our plan is to do three days in Paris seeing the sights, and then take the train to our beloved Chateauroux where we will join in with our friends and other local people to celebrate a week-long festival called American Week.  It will be a special time for all of us.  When we leave Chateauroux, our plan is to go to Eindhoven, Netherlands, for a week, and use that location for a base point to visit some battlefields and meet with the historians that are familiar with the history of the Lucky Seventh and the Battle of Overloon, where our uncle, George A. Meece, was killed.  We also plan to make some day trips to some surrounding cities.

The meeting went well.  We had originally decided to use Nijmegen as our base, but then switched to Eindhoven.  We also decided to fly home from Eindhoven instead of going back to Paris to fly home.

So....the food I had yesterday:
Morning: Freshly squeezed orange juice

Lunch at Barnes & Nobel: Coffee and a pretzel

Dinner:  Veggie Cocktail; Sauerkraut; Green Salad: Salad Dressing leftover from previously; Rice Crackers; Purple Hull Peas; Onion; Baked Sweet Potato Wedges.

Dessert: Kombucha, Lara Bar

To health and happiness.

Wednesday, May 3, 2017

Raw Vs Local and Dealing with Stress

I have been having a mental debate over the benefits of eating local vs eating raw.  Since I live in Arkansas, in a temperate climate, rather than in a tropical region, I began toying with the idea that there may be more virtue in eating what grows locally.  It sort of made sense, as past generations of my family have survived on such foods as dried beans and canned goods that were stored up for the winter during the growing season. They also depended on killing animals in order to eat.  Now there is nothing wrong with survival, in fact, I recommend it, but we are looking for more than survival. We are looking for optimum health, vitality, and mental clarity, are we not?  I experimented a bit.  I made a pot of dried beans and a pan of cornbread using almond milk.  Honestly, I had less energy, and it set of a host of cravings for cooked, energy draining foods. It has taken me several days to get my bearings, again.  My conclusion is that it is better to eat mostly raw local foods when available and imported raw foods when necessary.

Raw Freedom is a book by Frederic Patenaude that offers insight on how to achieve the benefits of the raw food diet in a less restrictive way. There are two benefits we are looking for by eating raw: good energy and avoiding degenerative diseases. Most of us can achieve those benefits with a diet that is 75% raw....maybe even 50%. My personal goal is to be 75-80% raw by having juices, smoothies, fruit, and salads. 
If you intend to eat a combination of raw and cooked foods, then it is better to eat some cooked everyday rather than binging on cooked every now and then. Consistency is key for optimum digestion. We are looking for a balance to receive the benefits of raw while enjoying the celebration of life that takes place around food.
Here is a meal plan that meets the goal of 80% raw:

Mornings:  Lemongrass tea; fresh orange juice or fresh apple juice.  You can get a good centrifugal juicer for about $100.  You can get a good citrus juicer for less. I found my citrus juicer at an estate sale.

Lunch:  Get in your fruit and greens with a green tropical smoothie; other fruit you have available; 1/2 avocado; coconut; maybe an apple with some raw almond butter

Dinner:  Veggie cocktail made by juicing carrots, beets, celery, bell pepper and apple; sauerkraut; a big green salad; a healthy salad dressing; ; some rice crackers; a cooked food if desired...either beans, potatoes, sweet potato, steamed vegetable, or a simple soup...but eat the raw foods first or eat the cooked foods mixed in with the raw.  You can mix some baked potato in with your salad.

Dessert can either be a handful of nuts and dates or a couple of goody balls, or even a Lara Bar.

This week's grocery haul.  I spent $176.00.  Let's see how long we can make this last if we try not to waste any food.

Lesson from the Quintessence of Natural Living:
Still looking at handling stress.  There are practical things we can do to help us deal with stress.  Here are a few:
1. Be realistic. Don't magnify your problems.  Everyone has disappointments in life.  None of us succeed every time we try something.  Even though we face serious problems, the solutions must come through emotional maturity, counseling, and taking control of your own life. Don't complain. Focus on the reward. There are things we can do to make a difference.
2. Don't get into a rut.  One-sidedness is never the answer.
3. Be interested in life and your purpose.
4. Be happy...poised and cheerful.
5. Don't suppress your emotions.  It is better to bring negative emotions to the surface, acknowledge them and let them be defused in healthy ways.  Exercise has been proven to help release emotional tensions.  Assertiveness is a good thing.

Carrot seeds - Purple Sun - Very rare.  I hope they will come up.
I am focusing on getting in my steps....10,000 per day.  I got in 13,000 steps on Monday, and 11,786 steps yesterday!  Yay!

I am planning a trip to Europe in September, so while getting in my steps I am trying to learn French on Duolingo.  Duolingo says I am 40% fluent in French, but there is no way that is correct. I am also, on a less intense scale, trying to learn some Dutch words.  Also, while walking I am listening to an audio book.  Just started A Court of Thorns and Roses by Sarah J. Maas.

Food for the day:

Breakfast: Lemongrass tea; fresh apple juice; organic oatmeal, fresh strawberries

Lunch: Green smoothies for 2 (herbs from the garden, coconut water, 2 bananas, 2 kiwi, 1/4 pineapple, 16 strawberries); 1/2 avocado; 1 mango; 1/8 watermelon


Dinner: Veggie cocktails for 2 ( 1/2 beet; 1/2 small bag of carrots; 1 bunch of celery hearts; 2 small tri-color bell peppers; 1 small apple); sauerkraut; green salad) romaine, salad cucumber, green onions, tomato); salad dressing (juice of a lime, apple cider vinegar, water, olive oil, salt, pepper); organic corn chips; purple hull peas, fried onions.

For dessert I had kombucha and a Lara Bar.

Notes on the food:  I feel better without the oatmeal in the mornings, the organic corn chips are too high in salt and fat which makes them quite addictive, and the fried onions are too high in fat.  I should have "fried" them in water instead of coconut oil.

To health and happiness.

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

The Right Amount of Tension Produces Music!

I bought groceries at Walmart and spent $128.59.  There are a few items that I personally will not eat, but this is for the household.  This total also included two packages of chicken strips to dehydrate for Lucy.  So far she is liking the dehydrated chicken...since she would not eat the vegetarian dog food I made we are trying the raw chicken approach.  She is eating it pretty good.  I marinated it in Yacon syrup, lemon juice, and Italian seasoning and then dehydrated it overnight.

Tomorrow the Hot Springs Village Raw Food Group meets for our monthly potluck at our house.  I watched some Fully Raw Kristina videos to get some recipe ideas and decided to make Raw Vegan Tabbouleh, Vegan Ranch Dressing, Carrot Bacon, Raspberry Coconut Lemonade, and Creamy Lemon Garlic Pasta Alfredo.  Everyone is welcome to our potlucks.  Message me if you want to come.  Each person attending must bring a raw food dish to share or pay $5.00.  We may have someone talking to us about crystal mining's not definite.  Either way, it will be a wonderful time of sharing.

After I decided on my recipes, Travis had to go to Food Wise and buy a few more grocery items.  He got cut flowers, lemons, parsley, and green onions.  Add to the grocery haul total - $14.38.

We finally got to try out our new coconut tool.  I cracked a coconut we bought last week at Food Wise, and then Travis used the tool to remove the coconut meat.  Travis said it worked better than anything he had ever tried before.  Here is the link to the one I bought:
Coconut Tool

Enjoying the early morning air.
Lesson from The Quintessence of Natural Living:
According to Keki Sidhwa, while the amount of stress to which we are exposed is increasing, our ability to handle stress is decreasing. Our modern lifestyle is causing our physical vitality and our mental and emotional strength to go down.  When we eat right and have better nutrition, we can withstand stress with more tranquility and poise.

Modern foods that are high in sugar rob us of B Vitamins which increases the likelihood of a nervous breakdown.  Overcooked foods that are deficient in minerals are another factor.  Sedentary habits and lack of exercise in the fresh air and sunshine rob our strength to face stress.  Drugs, including tobacco, alcohol. medicines, tea, coffee, and chocolate contribute to the problem.  Another culprit is getting caught up in the rat race and placing importance on false values.

The number one way to cope with the pressures of life is to relax and learn from our mistakes. Recreation is an essential part of a balanced life. It's important to have a change in activity.  If you work outside using physical labor, then you need poetry, music, and art to balance your life. If you work inside at a desk or doing creative work, then you need exercise and activity to find the balance.

The way to combat stress involves changing your mind and reorganizing your priorities.  Stress will always be part of life, because it is necessary in order to bring out your best.  Just like with the strings on the violin, though, there has to be the right degree of tension in order for the music to be produced.  You need enough stress to make your life interesting, but not enough to break you down.

Coming home.
Food prep for the day:
Lemongrass tea
Veggie cocktails for 2 ( 1 small package of carrots, 1 beet, 1 bunch of celery hearts, 1 apple)
Blended Salad ( 1 bunch of celery hearts, 1 tomato, 3 mini tricolor bell peppers, 1 small head of romaine lettuce, juice of 1 lemon, 2 Tbsp nutritional yeast, 3 Tbsp of sauerkraut)

MORNING: Lemongrass tea

LUNCH: green smoothie leftover from day before; watermelon; 1/2 avocado; walnuts

DINNER: veggie cocktail, blended salad; leftover fennel bean burger patty served on romaine leaves with sliced tomato, onion, and Bubbies dill pickles and a little mustard; leftover steamed potato, Kombucha, and a Lara Bar.

To health and happiness.