Tuesday, August 21, 2007

Raw Until Dinner: My Testimonial

Here I am with the world famous Karen Knowler, aka The Raw Food Coach. Karen and I are both members of a Platinum coaching group and she is also a member of my Spotlight U program. What an inspiration she is to come into my life at this time of dietary revolution.

For the past 5 years or so, my husband and I have tinkered with eating raw (vegan living foods).

We were looking for balance, something doable in the time starved society we find ourselves in. 5 years ago, I really tried to do this right but it was too complicated. Every raw food recipe I had required soaking or sprouting something that you couldn't eat for a couple days. My raw food motto became, "If you want to eat raw on Tuesday, start preparing on Sunday". But did it have to be so difficult? Defaulting to the pot of frijoles was too easy when your choices seemed so limited.

Just eating salads and raw fruits and veggies was boring and unsatisfying, and by 4pm each day I'd be a ravenous monster circling wild eyed for some fresh flesh to gnaw on. Paco would cave in the minute he saw some pan dulce or a plate of fries. (In his mind he was still obeying his decision to be a vegetarian).

I decided at some point that balance would be my guide, not vowing to be all raw or all cooked or all anything for what that's worth. (As an Austrian-German-Mexican-Aztec-American cultural hybrid, I've never been one to say I'm 100% anything, although if you catch me on the right day and ask me what indigenous tribe I am, I could glaringly answer "I'm a full blooded cabrona")

Meeting Karen Knowler this year renewed my interest as did my work with Dr. Elena Esparza who helped me greatly with her detox programs. If I could detox my system and get the gunk out, then Elena's herbs could do a better job. And eating raw was a great complement to the detoxing. So between Karen and Elena I've had some great incentives and support.

Another great resource was Natalia Rose's book The Raw Food Detox Diet. It's really good for someone who is a beginner and doesn't want to swear off animal food for good. You take a little assessment in the beginning of the book to see which level you are (1= ready for hardcore raw à 5=Standard American Diet). I scored a 2 meaning I was allowed to go Raw Until Dinner.

The concept of going Raw Until Dinner was music to my ears. The first week I counted down til dinner then popped some salmon and brown rice in my tummy. Halfway through the second week, I stopped to realize I'd already eaten 100% raw for a few days. Hmmm, not too hard.

I'm now on week 6 of Mostly Raw Until Dinner (hey, don't ask me to be 100% anything, remember?) With the exception of some amazingly succulent birria in East L.A. last week, I haven't really had the desire to eat meat anyhow.

So why am I doing this? What results am I looking for? Here is a checklist of differences I've noticed:

  • For the past 2 years I've suffered from insomnia. NOTHING has helped: herbs, pharmaceuticals, acupuncture, energy work… nothing. By eating raw (and doing Dr. Elena's detoxes) my body can now absorb the healing properties of the herbs and I CAN SLEEP. If that alone isn't cause enough to celebrate, I don't know what is.


  • My eyes are literally changing color. I kid you not. They are turning green. The detoxing is amazing. Who knew I had green eyes? My dad had green eyes, my grandmother had green eyes, now I get to have them too! (There is still plenty of brown in my eyes so it's not like I just popped in some green contact lenses and look like a totally different person)


  • Skin has cleared up AND my formerly sensitive skin can now use regular skincare products.


  • PMS symptoms pretty much nonexistent, however I reserve the right to use it as an excuse to get righteously pissed off once a month. (Don't tell my husband I said that, OK?)


  • More energy during the day, no crashes late afternoon.


  • I am so conscious of what is ALIVE and what is not. I can actually TASTE the difference. Raw foodists speak of this often, I thought they were full of BS, but it's true. The living enzymes in the food give off energy and you can feel and taste that life.


I'm not on a bandwagon to get everyone to do what I'm doing. You could be chomping on a donut as you read this and that doesn't faze me one bit. However, since my mom has been suffering from colon cancer this past year, I find it extremely important to make wise choices about my food. When I find something to get excited about, I get into it and then share my findings.

If you are interested in giving any of this a try here are some quick and easy resources:

Karen Knowler, The Raw Food Coach

The fastest and easiest place to start with free resources, instant downloads, video and more. Karen's approach to raw isn't spartan or dull. She's a vibrant beautiful woman who prances about her kitchen in stiletto heels, not Earth shoes.


Natalia Rose, The Raw Food Detox Diet

After you check out Karen's info, supplement it with this. Great for anyone looking to lose weight or simply get rid of the gunk.


Dr. Elena Esparza, Just Breathe Healing

If you're in the LA area, try to see her. If you're not in LA make a trip out there! She's a traditional healer with modern credentials who is the best in my opinion. Otherwise, get her herbal remedies online.

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