How to Make Almond Milk or Seed Milk at Home

Benefits of Making Your own Nut or Seed Milk

Natural nut and seed milks offer an excellent source of body-building protein and packed with life-giving nutrients: vitamins, minerals and enzymes. Especially when soaked overnight and the enzyme inhibitors are released from the nut or seed, the milk is made from live food, even better and more enzyme-packed than a raw food! Nut milks are easy to digest and absorb. There is no added sugar, preservatives, colorings or chemical additives (as in commercial soy and almond milk). There are also no added hormones or antibiotics (as in commercial dairy milk). Nut and seed milks are gluten-free, lactose-free and non-mucous forming: a great vegan, plant-based healthy alternative to dairy milk. And they taste great!

All information in this article is for educational purposes only.
It is not for the diagnosis, treatment, prescription or cure of any disease or health condition.

Make your own Fresh Almond Milk at Home!

You can easily make your own nut or seed milks at home, and this is something you can do more in the winter when there is less availability of fresh raw foods. Use the nut milk as the base for a delicious smoothie (keep reading for some yummy recipes to try yourself!)

How to Make Homemade Almond Nut or Seed Milk

1. Think Healthy

Start in a positive, loving and healthy vibration.

Think of all the good you are doing for your body!

2. Soak Overnight

Soak 1 cup nuts or seeds overnight (8-10 hours)
in a glass jar or container.

Use 1/3 nuts/seeds to 2/3 water.

3. Rinse and Blend

Rinse the soaked nuts or seeds with fresh water.

Blend 1 cup soaked nuts or seeds in the blender with 3-5 cups fresh water.

4. Strain Using Cotton Bag

Strain the blended mixture using the cotton bag. You may use the pulp to make raw crackers.

The liquid is your ‘milk!’

5. Add fruit, honey or dates

Refrigerate and use for 3-5 days.

Can blend again with dates, honey or fresh fruits for a delicious alternative to dairy.

Drinking Your Milk

Enjoy your nut milk as a healthy vegan source of protein full of enzyme power! You may drink it plain, add it to smoothies, raw soups or raw granola or add to a raw recipe.

Storing Your Milk

Store your Fresh Almond Milk in a glass jar in the fridge

It is best to store your nut or seed milk in a glass jar or glass container in the refrigerator. Shake well before using. If it is too thick, simply add more fresh water.

The fresh milk will keep for 3-5 days when refrigerated. Use the milk as a base to create other smoothies and fruit blends.
To make a fruit blend, take 1 cup of nut or seed milk and blend again with dates, fresh fruit or honey.

Good Nuts and Seeds for Milk

Good Nuts for Beginners

Try almond, macadamia, brazil nuts, pecans or cashews for your nut milks.

Good Seeds for Beginners

For seed milk, you can use pumpkin seeds or sesame seeds. If you use sunflower seeds, it is best to not strain them with the bags because the seed tend to get quite ‘sticky.’ For sunflower milk, simply keep the seed pulp in the milk.

More about Nuts and Seeds

Do NOT use roasted or salted nuts or seeds for your milk. Be sure to use raw unsalted nuts or seeds. Sunflower seeds and pumpkin seeds should be shelled, raw and unsalted. Always discard the soaked water from the overnight soaking process. Use fresh water when blending the milk.

Almond Milk Smoothie Recipe

1 Cup Fresh Almond Milk
2 Medjool dates (pitted)
1 Banana
2 Tablespoons Ground Flax Seed
1 Tablespoon Raw Maca Powder
1 Tablespoon Coconut Oil

Blend all ingredients in the blender until smooth. Enjoy!

Brazil Nut Milk Smoothie

1 Cup Fresh Brazil Nut Milk
2 Tbsp. Raw Cacao (or Carob) Powder
2 Tablespoons Raw Honey
Dash of Cinnamon Powder (to taste)

Blend all ingredients in the blender until smooth. Enjoy!

2 Sprout Nut Seed Milk Cotton Bags + eBook with Recipes – Raw Food Cooking
$15.99

More on Nut Milk and Healthy Recipes:

Sea Salt with Chemical Additives?! Check for E535 & E536 Yellow Prussiate of Soda (YPS)

A food additive to AVOID: Yellow Prussiate of Soda

Just when you think you are eating a natural, whole and pure diet, think again. It’s crazy that we now have to even check the label of the salt we buy, but it’s a true sign of the times. Can food manufacturers save money but ‘cutting’ their food the same way drug dealers ‘cut’ their drugs with fillers? You bet! And can the fillers be dangerous, the same way they can be in drugs? Absolutely!

It’s an interesting story how I discovered the latest culprit in my food additive most ‘unwanted’ list.

E535 or Yellow Prussiate of Soda (YPS) as a Non-caking Agent in Salt…What is it??

All information in this article is for educational purposes only. 
It is not for the diagnosis, treatment, prescription or cure of any disease or health condition. 

A client of mine recently completed a 10-day green juice fast and colon detox cleanse under my care. He broke the fast by eating only fresh raw fruits for 2 days and he felt amazing. On the third day of eating, he ate only fruits in the morning and the went to a friend’s house and ate a plain organic baked potato with salt (no butter, no margarine, no herbs or seasonings). That night, he suffered terribly with hot flashes, restless sleep (insomnia), headaches, irritability and general unease. At no point during or after the detox did he feel this way so it was a real surprise to him and he contacted me first thing in the morning.

When we spoke, I was sure he had ‘snuck’ something else into his diet. He was adamant that he only had a baked potato and salt. To be clear, I asked about any allergies or intolerances and he confirmed that he has never previously had any problems at all. Finally, I said, “Ok, let’s find about more about the salt.” He want back to the friend’s house and found a Morton Sea Salt with the following ingredients: Sea Salt, Yellow Prussiate of Soda. What is Yellow Prussiate of Soda and why is it in salt? I thought salt was just salt?! Not anymore.

It only took a fast bit of google research to realize that the Yellow Prussiate of Soda was what affected him.

Just an additive in salt? Yes! (What we should really be asking is Why does even plain salt need an additive now too??) Well, remember what I said about ‘cutting the drug’ with cheap fillers to make more money? Yep, it’s a sad, sick reality that the food industry is in the business of making money (NOT food).

First, I checked on Wikipedia to understand what the heck this stuff is. Here is what I found:

What is Sodium Ferrocyanide (Yellow Prussiate of Soda)?

Yellow Prussiate of Soda is Sodium ferrocyanide in its hydrous form (which means Sodium ferrocyanide with water). This is how Wikipedia describes Sodium ferrocyanide: “Sodium ferrocyanide is a chemical additive known as E 535 in the EU. It is added to road and food grade salt as an anticaking agent. When combined with iron, it converts to a deep blue pigment called Prussian blue. In photography, it is used for bleaching, toning, and fixing. It is used as a stabilizer for the coating on welding rods. In the petroleum industry, it is used for removal of mercaptans. Sodium ferrocyanide is produced industrially from hydrogen cyanide.

I don’t know about you, but to me, that definitely doesn’t sounds like something that is safe for human consumption!

So I decided to search a bit further and look for the MSDS for Sodium ferrocyanide. Every chemical made by man has what’s called a Material Data Safety Sheet (MSDS) which by law has to list what the chemical is and what type of harm can be experienced if ingested, if inhaled or in exposed to on the skin. On sciencelab.com, I found this:

Morton Salt MSDS

“Potential Acute Health Effects: Extremely hazardous in case of ingestion. Hazardous in case of skin contact (irritant), of eye contact (irritant), of inhalation.” Scrolling down a bit, I read this: “Ingestion: Do not induce vomiting. Loosen tight clothing such as a collar, tie, belt or waistband. If the victim is not breathing, perform mouth-to-mouth resuscitation. Seek immediate medical attention.

Just to be sure, I checked the Morton’s Sea Salt label again. I didn’t see anything about any warning of ingestion.

Instead, the label claims, “Morton has selected a sea salt perfect for all types of cooking and seasoning.”

Well, it seemed pretty clear to me that my client suffered a serious side effect from the additive in this sea salt. Since he had just fasted for 10 days on juice, his body was even cleaner than most and I’m sure that’s why his body reacted. But how many people are reacting to this additive every day and have no idea that the cause of their troubles was in their sea salt? And how many children are affected, their bodies being so much smaller than an adult and therefore having the potential of a more serious reaction? I mean, a chemical additive made from cyanide?!?!

I had to do something. So I went to the Morton website and filled out their contact form. This was my comment:

As a consumer, I am asking you to reconsider your choice of toxic ingredients in your salt. Have you looked at the MSDS for Yellow Prussiate of Soda? I would not even take a bath in your salt for fear that the toxins would enter my skin (would you take a bath in arsenic???) Seriously, there is simply no need to add a chemical to salt. Salt is salt. This country needs more natural whole and pure and less poison. My client was awake all night last night with hot flashes, restless sleep and a headache after having potatoes with nothing but potato and your Morton Fine Sea Salt. I am so sad to see what so-called food companies are peddling as food.

I was so angry and I felt betrayed, because my client had trusted me, and I did not even think to warn him about eating salt!! It was an immediate reaction to the feeling that I want to protect people from this crap, and I didn’t expect a response. But, to my surprise, they responded immediately. They asked if I still had the sea salt and would I be willing to send it in for testing. A spark of hope entered my mind…maybe these food companies aren’t that bad, maybe they had a bad batch with too much of the Yellow Prussiate of Soda and maybe they are doing their best to resolve the issue. I really felt hopeful that somehow Morton was going to ‘fix’ this problem. I instantly replied, offering the sample and asking how it should be sent. They responded by asking for my address saying they would send a mail packet for me to return the sample to them at no cost. I was actually excited!

Days passed and I did not receive the mailer. 2 weeks passed. 3 weeks passed. I thought, hmmm..this is strange. So I emailed Morton again asking for an update on the mailer. And guess what?

They never replied. And they never sent a mailer. In short, they didn’t do anything.

Should I have been surprised? Not really. All of this only confirms and reaffirms what I have been saying all along: The food industry is in the business of making money (NOT food).

Monosodium Glutamate (MSG) in table salt in Bali

Even with ‘normal’ salt, you have to check the label. Look at this container of table salt I found in Bali, Indonesia at many ‘so-called’ health food and even raw food restaurants…yes the second ingredient on the list is Monosodium Glutamate (MSG), and it’s right there in the label for the world to see. The third ingredient is a new way of listing Ribonucleotideas ‘Ribotide,’ another excito-toxin food additive and flavor enhancer that can give you the same reaction as MSG and an uncontrollably itchy rash to boot.

So if you got a screaming migraine headache after eating your hippie raw food salad next to the rice fields in Ubud, it was probably not from the spirits or the full moon.

Do you see Anticompactante YPS on this list of ingredients?

Here is yet another offending salt I saw when I was recently in Costa Rica. Do you see the ‘Anticompactante YPS‘ on this label? That sure sounds like Yellow Prussiate of Soda to me! Luckily I found this on my first morning in Costa Rica, and I avoided adding any salt to my salads for the remainder of my stay.

People think I am crazy for pointing this stuff out, but do you know how many people suffer from headaches, anxiety and insomnia and are on medications for it? What’s crazy to me is that I am the only one talking about this!!

For anyone who has done a detox, juice fast, colon cleanse, liver flush or raw food diet, please be aware that when your body is cleaner, you will most definitely be more sensitive to these types of chemical additives, and you may find yourself reacting to a food that previously you were able to eat with seemingly no problem.

Get into the habit of reading all of your food labels, including salt!

Ferrocianuro de sodio [E-535]: Yellow Prussiate of Soda

And again, another salt I found, this time in Colombia (and also Ecuador). In this salt there is added fluoride, which most expats in South America know is bad so many already don’t buy it. But, no one seems to be talking about the obvious offender.

Do you see ‘Ferrocianuro de sodio [E-535]‘ on this 130g. container of Refisal brand Sal? In Spanish, you may also see it listed as ‘amarillo prusiato de soda (YPS)’ on a label. Both of these are, yep you guessed it….Yellow Prussiate of Soda. E-535 is the universal food additive number for this chemical additive.

In some countries, the additive name – Yellow Prussiate of Soda – will be listed on the food label, and in other countries you will see the chemical additive number. As a number, Yellow Prussiate of Soda can be listed as E535, E-535 or 535. In the above example, they’ve listed both.

Yet another example is this so-called “heart healthy” salt sold in Israel. As you can see, it contains E535 right there on the label. (By the way, the “normal” unhealthy salt in Israel also contains Yellow Prussiate of Soda too!).

This “healthy” salt in Israel contains E535 or Yellow Prussiate of Soda!

Since I’ve been made aware of this additive, I have noted people’s reactions to it, anything from hot flashes, itchy rashes, red bumps on the skin, cracked skin rashes, irritability, increased heart rate, achy joints and insomnia to general malaise.

When removing the chemically-infected salt from their diet and replacing it with a Himalayan or pure sea salt with no additives, all symptoms disappeared, permanently.

Be sure to watch out for other derivatives of cyanide also used in salt: E536 Potassium ferrocyanide and E538 Calcium ferrocyanide. The most common one used is E535 Sodium ferrocyanide. In Europe, I’ve noticed that you will see E536 as an additive in the sea salt you find there. Below is an example of a sea salt purchased at a health food store in Holland. Yes, even in the European Union (EU), you will find additives in your food! (This salt also has added fluoride, another reason to avoid!)

Here is an example of a sea salt from Holland containing  E536 or Potassium ferrocyanide. (This salt also has added fluoride, another reason to avoid!)

Sea salt from Holland containing E536 or Potassium ferrocyanide.
(This salt also has added fluoride, another reason to avoid!)

I personally use medium/coarse Himalayan salt crystals in a grinder. The brand I recommend is called Sherpa Pink Himalayan salt, available for sale in 5-pound bags on amazon HERE.

As Dr. Fred Bisci, a 80-year old 100% raw food vegan wisely says, “When in doubt, leave it out!”

More on Food Additives:

International Directory of Detox, Juice Fast, Healing Centers and Retreats

From Food Matters

Detox, Juice Fasting Retreat and Healing Center Directory

World Destinations for Detox, Juice Fasting, Healing Clinics

USA and Canada

Gerson Institute – San Diego, California
Gerson Therapy is tailored to treat cancer, diabetes, cardiovascular disease and arthritis using natural treatment methods such as organic foods, juicing and detoxification.
www.gerson.org

Hippocrates Health Institute – Florida
The Hippocrates Health Institute provides a tranquil haven for peace and health restoration. Guests are treated with enzyme-rich vegan food, educational classes and exercise facilities.
www.hippocratesinst.org

An Oasis of Healing – Arizona
An Oasis of Healing offers natural options for treating cancer, whilst promoting immune strengthening and health restoration.
www.anoasisofhealing.com

The Kushi Institute – Massachusetts
The Kushi Institute is an international expert authority on the macrobiotic lifestyle for health and well-being, offering residential educational programs.
www.kushiinstitute.org

Creative Health Institute – Michigan
The Creative Health Institute is a learning facility designed to help people reclaim health through raw food nutrition and detoxification.
www.creativehealthinstitute.com

Holistic Medical Clinic of the Carolinas – North Carolina
This holistic medical facility uses combined conventional and natural therapies to provide integrated mind-body-spirit healing for a wide variety of diseases.
www.holisticmedclinic.com

Optimum Health Institute – San Diego; Austin
The Optimum Health Institute aims to rejuvenate physical, emotional and spiritual health through vegetarian raw food, juicing, lymphatic exercise, colon hydrotherapy and prayer.
www.optimumhealth.org

The Issels Foundation – Arizona
The Issels Foundation offers alternative therapies for cancer and chronic illnesses, with the dual aim of treating disease and preventing its recurrence.
www.issels.com

Tree of Life Rejuvenation Center – Arizona
Under the guidance of world-renowned health and spiritual practitioners, The Tree of Life Rejuvenation Center is a healing haven for a wide range of diseases. Expert teaching on raw food nutrition, spiritual growth and natural living is also available.
www.treeoflife.nu

Rudolf Steiner Health Center
- Ann Arbor, Michigan
This program is designed for ambulatory individuals with chronic illnesses, or anyone seeking a restorative regimen. The Health Center follows the Anthroposophic medical guidelines of Austrian scientist-philosopher Rudolf Steiner.
www.steinerhealth.org

Weimar Institute – Weimar, California
The Weimer Institute offers nutrition and lifestyle guidance, imbued with a strong spiritual focus, to remedy disease.
www.weimar.org

Oxygen Life Spa – Texas
The Oxygen Life Spa offers a spiritual space for healing through the use of Ozone saunas, Chi Tables and Tesla Coil Photon Generators.
www.oxygenlifespa.com

Rest Of Your Life Health Retreat – Texas
Under doctor guidance, guests may fast and detoxify in a remote country environment. Education about natural hygiene and raw-food healthy living is also provided.
www.roylretreat.com

Yoga Oasis – Hawaii
The Yoga Oasis offers intensive yoga and detoxification programs, with food preparation classes and nature excursions also available.
www.yogaoasis.org

Ann Wigmore Foundation – San Fidel, New Mexico
An educational and healing retreat, the Ann Wigmore foundation prescribes live, organic vegan foods and natural detoxification methods for health and recovery.
www.wigmore.org

Dr Gonzalez – New York
This clinic is headed by medical doctors who offer treatments for cancer, autoimmune diseases, allergies and chronic fatigue.
www.dr-gonzalez.com

The Center for the Improvement of Human Functioning – Kansas
This clinic founded by Dr Hugh Riordan uses the approach of finding the cause of illness and to correct it rather than just treating the symptoms.
www.brightspot.org

Canada

New Life Retreat – Ontario, Canada
Situated on a lush organic farm, New Life Retreat has an interactive, practical approach to teaching eco-friendly and healthy living. In addition to a fresh, organic vegetarian diet, guests will benefit from meditation, relaxation, juicing, fasting and exercise in nature.
www.newliferetreat.com

Nonpareil Natural Health Retreat – Stirling, Ontario
This natural haven provides a range of services for detoxification and health rejuvenation. Raw-juice cleansing, nutrition counselling, colon therapy, mud baths, yoga, relaxation in nature, reflexology, reiki and meditation are available in their programs.
www3.sympatico.ca/nonpareil/

Europe and the UK

Paracelsus Klinik – Switzerland
Paracelsus Klinik is an integrative conventional/complementary medicine clinic, treating a wide array of diseases.
www.paracelsus.ch

Vortex Vital – Spain
Vortox Vital is a resort-style health retreat providing fasting and numerous other detoxification programs.
www.vortexvital.com

Detox International – Spain, Portugal
Detox International provides 7 day holistic detox retreats supported by a team of nutritionists and therapists.
www.detox-international.com

Australia and New Zealand

The Vita Centre – Edgecliff, New South Wales
The Vita Centre offers a holistic, integrative blend of conventional and complementary therapies for a wide range of diseases.
www.vitacentre.com

Yarra Vallley Living Centre (home of The Gawler Cancer Foundation), Victoria
This clinic has a combined orthodox and mind/body medicine approach to treating disease, utilising treatment advice from medical doctors and natural health practitioners. Set in 40 acres of natural bushland at the foot of rolling hills, they host Wellbeing retreats in a nurturing and peaceful environment.
www.gawler.org

Fountainhead Organic Health Retreat – Maleny, Queensland
100% organic health retreat focusing on stress, detox and fitness programs.
www.fountainhead.com.au

Asia

The Farm – Phillipines
The Farm is a lush eco-friendly resort, with medical doctors that tailor individual detoxification and healing programs. Guests are luxuriously pampered during their program.
www.thefarm.com.ph

The Spa Resorts – Thailand
This Spa Resorts provide detoxification programs, fasting, massage and reflexology in the lush comfort of resort accommodation.
www.thesparesorts.net

Kamalaya – Thailand
Kamalaya is a luxury resort that offers detox and yoga retreats in Thailand. Their Wellness Sanctuary offers colonic irrigation and speciality detoxes including weight loss, sleep enhancement, optimal fitness and stress & burnout.
www.kamalaya.com

Atsumi Detox – Thailand
Atsumi Retreat Healing Center is a natural detox & therapy education facility in Phuket, Thailand where people come to fast and cleanse their systems of toxins.
www.atsumihealing.com

Atmanjai Detox – Thailand
Atmanjai Resort is a natural detox retreat center, based on the Dr. Bernard Jensen healing concepts. Each guest has their own colema room during their cleanse.
www.atmanjai.com

Julia Jus’ Innergetic Health Rejuvenation Retreat – Bali, Indonesia
This 7-day retreat provides a comprehensive detoxification program involving raw-food cuisine, pilates, meditation, colonic irrigation, detox baths, massage, ozone therapy, nutrition/lifestyle counselling and infra-red saunas.
www.juliajus.com

Central and South America

Gerson Plus Therapy – Tijuana, Mexico
Dr Dan Rogers is a trained Medical Doctor and Naturopath. He has been treating patients using integrative medicine since the late 1970’s. Dr Rogers believes in the use of the Gerson Plus therapy which is a nutrition based form of detoxification and healing from within.
www.gersonplus.com

An Oasis of Hope – Playas de Tijuana, Mexico
This is an integrative medical facility specializing in conventional and complementary cancer treatments.
www.oasisofhope.com

Sanoviv Medical Institute – Baja California, Mexico
This is a holistic medical facility offering integrative treatments for numerous chronic or general diseases.
www.sanoviv.com

Health For Humanity – Ecuador
Provides information and services for QHM technology and cancer treatment.
www.cancercuredresearch.com

Farm of Life (Finca de Vida) – Costa Rica
This remote eco-lodge is a natural sanctuary for the exploration of health-fulfilling activities such as yoga, raw food/vegetarian eating, eco-adventures and self-improvement. Farm of Life is a smoke-meat-alcohol-free environment.
www.fincadevida.com Read my article on Finca de Vida!

Pacha Mama – Costa Rica
This retreat offers numerous healing services such as yoga, detoxification, colonic irrigation, reflexology, acupuncture, nutritional consultation, meditation, spiritual teachings, juice fasting, massage and reiki.
www.pachamama.com Read my article on Pachamama!

Ann Wigmore Institute – Puerto Rico
This is an educational health retreat that practices Ann Wigmore’s methods of detoxification and raw-food health restoration.
www.annwigmore.org

Africa

Detox International – South Africa
Detox International provides 7 day holistic detox retreats supported by a team of nutritionists and therapists.
www.detox-international.co.za

Cancure.org
A valuable resource for investigating natural therapy clinics worldwide and considering treatment options.
www.cancure.org

More on Traveling Raw:

Recipe: Banana Softie with Cinnamon Sauce, A Raw Food Vegan ‘Ice-Cream’

100% Raw Food and Healthy Bliss!

This raw food vegan dessert is a favorite, even amongst cooked-food eaters! The banana makes this dish look and taste creamy, just like real ice cream, but there is no dairy or added sugar as you will soon see. I hope, with this recipe, you can see how much more there is to make with a blender than just smoothies! Personally, I found that my Ninja blender motor wasn’t strong enough to blend frozen bananas. Luckily, I borrowed a KitchenAid blender and used the Puree Button and it worked just fine. When you consider spending more money on an expensive blender like the Vitamix, it’s the high-power motor that makes the difference.

The main ingredient of the Banana Softie is frozen bananas. Organic is best if possible of course!

Buy bananas ripe before freezing

I like to buy organic bananas on sale, just before they are too ripe, and use them for this dish. You can keep a small stockpile of frozen bananas in the freezer ready to make a batch of softie for family and friends. The key to freezing the bananas is 1) peel each banana first and 2) chop into pieces before freezing.

Store frozen bananas peeled and chopped

If you’ve ever tried to freeze a banana whole with the skin on, you would have quickly learned how difficult it is to peel a frozen banana and how much harder it is to put whole frozen bananas in the blender! So, peel, chop and place your frozen banana pieces in a plastic bag or glass container in the freezer. Let freeze solid before making this recipes (at least 24 hours is best).

Banana Softie (100% Raw Vegan Ice Cream) Ingredients:

  • 6 organic bananas (peeled, chopped and frozen)

Banana Softie Sauce/Topping Ingredients:

  • 1/2 tsp organic cinnamon powder
  • 4 Tbsp. Raw Honey or 2 Organic Medjool Dates (pitted)
  • 2 Tbsp. filtered water
  • 1-2 Organic Medjool Dates, chopped for added topping (optional)
  • 2 Tbsp. Raw Cacao Nibs for added topping (optional)

Banana Softie Directions:

The lucky winner of the Vitamix Blender can use their new blender to make this recipe. You can also use a normal blender, but make sure it has a decent motor. For example, a Cuisinart brand should be ok but a Nutri-Bullet may not be able to blend the frozen banana.

Blend, and serve…so easy!

All you need to do is place the frozen chopped banana pieces in the blender and add about 1/4 cup filtered water. (The water just helps to puree the bananas into a creamy blend). If your blender doesn’t blend the bananas, let then sit out for about 10 minutes to thaw a bit and try again. (Of course, with a Vitamix…this will not be a problem!)

Once the bananas are blended in a yummy creamy softie form, you will be ready to serve! Be prepared to serve immediately because the softie will start to melt rather quickly. For that reason, it’s best to make fresh and serve fresh. If necessary, you can make the softie and store in the freezer prior to serving.

In that case, keep the sauce and topping separate and garnish later.

Optional: Cinnamon Sauce and Raw Toppings
The Cinnamon Sauce tastes amazing with Banana Softie! To make the sauce, stir raw honey (or pureed organic Medjool dates), cinnamon and water into a sauce. If your raw honey is quite thick, you can blend the sauce in a mini food processor.  Note: raw honey is not a vegan food; if you’re vegan, use organic Medjool dates in your Cinnamon sauce.

Banana Softie with Cinnamon Sauce

Drizzle the cinnamon sauce on top of each bowl of banana softie and suddenly your raw food dessert is looking very yummy! Additionally, you may add some raw cacao nibs and/or chopped dates on top.

Banana Softie with Chopped Dates

When I worked at the Spa Samui Detox Resort in Koh Samui, Thailand, this dish was very popular and all of the fasters wanted to know how soon after their fast could they eat the Banana Softie! At Spa Samui, they also offered Mango Softie (which is the same dish but uses fresh frozen mango instead). Personally, I never liked the Mango Softie because it was never creamy like the Banana Softie but you can certainly give it a try and decide for yourself. If you want to try Mango Softie, simply peel, chop and freeze about 4-5 mangoes and follow the instructions as per above. You can also experiment by preparing ‘2 scoops’ of ‘ice-cream,’ one banana and one mango.

A ‘normal’ ice-cream will contain added sugar, artificial colors and flavors, sometimes gluten and of course dairy. No wonder people get acne, bad skin, puffiness, port digestion and even acid-reflux after eating it. Choose the raw food vegan gluten-free version and you have no added chemicals. Instead, you get extra the healing power of real food! Cinnamon is known to help regulate blood sugars, bananas are a great source of potassium and mangoes are high in Vitamin C, and several trial studies suggest that polyphenolic anti-oxidant compounds in mango are known to offer protection against breast and colon cancers. See how much fun eating raw food can be! And it’s good for you too!

More Raw Food Desserts:

What’s Wrong with Vegenaise

The only thing I would use is the glass jar, well cleaned of course

Sorry to be the bearer of bad news again, but it’s high time people start learning the difference between healthy food and ‘healthy-looking’ food. Now, I’ve never been someone to eat ‘replacement foods’ or vegan alternatives to animal-based foods, but I know a lot of people who do consume these foods, and most of them do so because it’s vegan and they think it’s healthy. Vegan, yes…but healthy? No!

All information in this article is for educational purposes only. 
It is not for the diagnosis, treatment, prescription or cure of any disease or health condition. 

Here’s the problem with Vegenaise – it has hidden forms of MSG in disguise. “Oh, Jennifer…not again!” Well, I did say that I was sorry. What’s worse, Vegenaise recently got listed as “one of Ellen’s favorite things” on the Ellen Degeneres show. This makes me sick, because many people may try this product, not feel good and then think that a high raw food or vegan diet doesn’t work for them. They may go back to their old Standard American Diet (SAD) never to venture into the land of raw food and health again.

What is a “hidden form of MSG”?

Ok, here’s the deal. Food companies know that Monosodium Glutamate (MSG) is the best flavor enhancer there is; it is a food additive that adds A LOT of flavor to a product for little to no cost. BUT, savy consumers have caught on to MSG and most people know that it’s not a healthy additive because it can trigger migraine headaches, irritability, insomnia, rashes, hot flashes, dizziness, mood swings and even promote weight gain. A smart consumer like you will not buy a product containing MSG and the food companies know that. But they are already light years ahead of you! The food industry now uses new ingredients that contain what’s called factory created free glutamates. While one ingredient containing factory created free glutamates alone in a product may have a low concentrations of glutamate, using a combination of several ingredients together can add up to a considerable and dangerous amount of glutamate in one product, and in many cases you will actually find more glutamate than if the product had only contained MSG by itself! And that is why I called these ingredients MSG in disguise.

Never believe what you read on the front of a food product. Always read the list of ingredients before you decide to buy.

Looking at the label, it’s easy to get distracted by all the healthy smoke and mirrors like “vegan, gluten-free, dairy free and non-GMO.”

But keep reading. Do you see “brown rice syrup and soy protein?”

Not good. Not good at all! Actually I’m suspicious of the mustard flour too, I but can’t prove that one. (What is mustard flour anyway…shouldn’t it just read “mustard seed” or “ground whole mustard” if it is a natural ingredient?

Checking the list of hidden names for MSG, or monosodium glutamate, meaning ingredients that contain factory created free glutamates on msgmyth.com you will see:

Hidden Names for MSG from msgmyth.com

As a raw foodist but more importantly as a person who eats only natural, whole and pure foods, I would not eat Vegenaise, knowingly. And the reason why I say that is because I’ve seen Vegenaise as an added ingredient in salad bars at health food stores in the USA (and also in Hong Kong). If you don’t look carefully, you could easily be eating a fresh, raw salad with all the organic bells and whistles and find yourself with a headache later, restless sleep through the night and a cranky irritable ‘snappy’ nature and maybe even a puffy face the next day. You might even find yourself itching your scalp, your eyes or your leg and meanwhile have no idea whatsoever that the cause of your discomfort was from that Vegenaise. Too many times, people swear to me that they only eat organic and they never eat MSG, Disodium Inosinate, Ribonucleotide, or Disodium Guanylate (which can be legally hidden in the other ingredients like “onion powder” or “natural flavors”).

Time to take the organic wool off the non-GMO eyes and understand what and how these chemical additives can affect you, your health and the health of your family.

My advice: Do NOT use Vegenaise. Ever. Check all salad bar ingredients before choosing to buy. If you don’t know or if it isn’t listed, ask. If the staff member seems unsure or can’t provide a clear, concise list of ingredients, then please don’t take the chance.

I have found high glutamate-content ingredients aka hidden MSG in 99.9% of the restaurants I’ve been to, and that includes vegan, gluten-free, non-GMO, organic and raw food restaurants.

Chefs are simply not educated to the level of hidden names for chemical food additives. I even had a certified raw food chef tell me recently that they were giving their newborn baby soy formula (something that is known and proven to have hidden MSG in the form of Organic Brown Rice Syrup, Organic Soy Protein Concentrate. Yes, you should be familiar with those offenders by now!). Giving high glutamate-content foods (even more concentrated in liquid form than in solid foods) to a newborn baby is a sure way to have many, many sleepless nights. If a certified raw food chef doesn’t know to avoid those for their own child, do you think they will know how to make a ‘safe’ salad by checking all ingredients on all sauces, dressings and spice mixtures? Do you think they will know what to ask the supplier?

Please don’t think you’re doing yourself a favor by choosing the soy-free version of Vegenaise. You will still find Brown Rice Syrup and Pea Protein, just as bad! It’s like choosing cocaine instead of crack….you won’t get any halo for that upgrade!

Their Horseradish Sauce: Brown Rice Syrup Pea Protein, Natural Flavor.
Tartar Sauce: Brown Rice Syrup, Pea Protein.
Roasted Garlic Vegenaise Gourmet: Brown Rice Syrup, Pea Protein, Natural Flavor.
Barbecue Vegenaise Gourmet: Seriously? Natural Smoke Flavor, Red Brown Rice Syrup, Spices, Natural Flavor, Pea Protein.
Chipotle Vegenaise Gourmet: Brown Rice Syrup, Pea Protein, Chipotle Powder, Natural Smoke Flavor, Natural Flavor, Paprika Extract.
Pesto Vegenaise Gourmet: Brown Rice Syrup, Pea Protein.

I couldn’t make this stuff up if I tried!

Are you starting to see a pattern here? Your body is an organic being and it’s sensitive to chemical derivatives and extracts. These ‘crack’ food additives add a lot of flavor to food making it additive, savory and yummy, but they also over-stimulate your brain. And your central nervous system. And that is not a good thing! High glutamate ingredients also over-stimulate your appetite, making your hungrier hours later and even into the next day. In lab studies, the common protocol to make a rat gain weight is to give it Monosodium Glutamate (MSG). Do you want to be a food industry rat? I certainly don’t!

You only use their salad dressings? Well, let’s check them out:

Vegan Honey Mustard: Brown Rice Syrup, Non-GMO Soy Protein, Natural Flavors, Spices. (I love how they put the Non-GMO…it’s like saying, ‘Hey, I have some crack to sell you…but don’t worry…it’s Non-GMO and organic!’)
Vegan Sesame Dijon: Brown Rice Syrup, Natural Flavors.
Vegan Thousand Island: Brown Rice Syrup, Non-GMO Soy Protein, Spices.
Organic Miso Ginger: Brown Rice Syrup, Non-GMO Soy Protein.
Spicey Southwestern Ranch: Brown Rice Syrup, Non-GMO Soy Protein, Brown Rice Syrup (again), Vegetable Enzyme, Vegetable Enzyme (again), Spices.

Make your own healthy version with:
Raw apple cider vinegar, shredded fresh raw ginger, fresh lemon, fresh garlic and water. Easy!

There’s something to be said for using all pure, natural whole ingredients and for feeding your body foods that boost your health and immune system. It’s not hard to make your own salad dressings and sauces at home, and actually it’s cheaper too. I don’t advocate the non-vegan version of these sauces either…they are full of the same added ingredients! What I advocate is REAL FOOD. A dressing made with fresh lemon, fresh garlic, cayenne pepper, cumin and fresh parsley, as an example. Isn’t it time to make the change, throw out these inferior foods and start giving your body what it deserves?

If you think you have reacted to a food which is either not labeled correctly or is label suspiciously, you have every right to contact the company by email and ask what’s in their food.

You can do this in every country in the world, even as an ex-pat living in a foreign country. I suggest that you word your email in this way:

“I recently ate your xyz product and x hours later I experienced the following reaction: (describe symptoms here). I have discussed this with my doctor and he/she has informed me that I need to know for medical reasons all of the ingredients that was in the food. Specifically, I need to know if you use MSG (Monosodium Glutamate), Ribonucleotide, Disodium Inosinate or Disodium Guanylate in any of the ingredients that you use to make your product. Also, I need to know how much factory created free glutamate is in the following ingredients (list suspicious ingredients like pea protein, yeast extract, malodextrin, soy protein, natural flavorings, etc here). Thank you and I appreciate you taking the time to respond to my inquiry.”

I do NOT suggest that you write any emails like this: “Jennifer said blah blah blah blah and Jennifer’s blog post says blah blah blah so what do you have to say about that?!” Please, be professional and courteous if you are writing an inquiry to a company. You have to ask the right questions to get the right answers. These companies have legal teams that know how to respond and get through hoops if you do not ask the right questions. My goal is that every product be required to label their total factory created glutamate concentration and any hidden ingredients or flavor enhancers so ultimately, you can make the best choice of food for you!

For more on how to start an additive-free diet diet, how to manage food allergies or what minerals you may specifically be deficient in, book a private health consult with me via Skype.

How to Book Your Health & Nutritional Coaching Session:

1. Take photos of your eyes with a digital camera.
2. Email the photos to me for approval.
3. We schedule a time to meet via phone or Skype!

More on Food Additives:

Recipe: Raw Tahini, Garlic and Lemon Salad Dressing or Veggie Dip…and it’s Amazing!

Raw Tahini Salad Dressing is one of my absolute favorites!

This recipe takes less than 10 minutes to make and gives you a great healthy homemade veggie dip or salad dressing to use all week long! I’ve decided to feature an easy-to-blend-and-create recipe this week to show you how many different things you can make in a blender…and not just smoothies!

Ingredients for Tahini Dressing

Raw tahini, or sesame paste (think peanut butter made with sesame seeds instead of peanuts), can be found in most supermarkets and health food stores. I bought the tahini for this blog post at a Greek supermarket and deli, but you can also find it in any type of Mediterreanean or Middle Eastern Supermarket as well.

In the US and North America, people tend to call sesame paste ‘tahini‘ but it the Middle East you will see it called ‘tahina.’ In Israel, there are countless brands of tahina for sale. They even have a sprouted raw tahini sesame paste from Ethiopia which is outstandingly delicious!!

What’s interesting to know is that in Israel, people rarely eat tahini straight from the jar. For them, it’s too thick and it’s not tasty without any spices or fresh lemon juice. It seems to me that in the USA, tahini is under-appreciated and under-utilized because people don’t know the traditional way to prepare it. In the recipe below, I will show you how!

Easy to make and tastes amazing!!

Typically I will use one whole jar of tahina or sesame seed paste to blend up my tahina dressing for the week. Here, I used one 16-oz. (or 454 gram) container of tahina to make a container of 32 oz. (or 950 ml) of dip or salad dressing. Making salads that taste good is a key to raw food success, and there is no faster way to kill a good salad than by adding a store-bought salad dressing full of sugar, preservatives, flavor enhancers (MSG), thickeners and emulsifiers.

I always make my own salad dressing and I am a happier, healthier person for it!

Sesame seeds are a great vegan source of calcium and they’re also naturally high in zinc. Fresh lemon is extremely alkalizing, good for pH health. Cumin is known to aid in digestion. Cayenne pepper is very good for the heart and blood (circulation). Garlic is a natural anti-inflammatory food and a great immune system booster.

*Can’t find tahini or sesame seed paste where you live? You can make it from scratch with organic sesame seeds! Check out the recipe for it here: How to Make Raw Tahini

Tahini Salad Dressing/Dip Ingredients:

 

  • 2 – 3 large garlic cloves (optional)
  • 1 16 oz. container tahini (sesame seed paste)
  • Juice of 2 lemons (freshly squeezed is best)
  • 1 cup water (filtered is best)
  • 1 tsp. cumin powder
  • 1/2 tsp. cayenne pepper
  • 1/2 tsp. paprika (optional)
  • dash sea salt or Himalayan salt (to taste)

 

Tahini Salad Dressing Directions:

The lucky winner of the Vitamix Blender can use their new blender to make this recipe. For the commoners (like me!), you can use a normal blender. Peel the garlic and put garlic and water in the blender. Blend. Add the entire jar of tahini paste (with the oil which is usually separated on top), spices, fresh lemon juice and salt and blend again. Adjust spices to taste (you may need to add more cumin, salt or cayenne pepper) and blend again. If the result is too thick, add more water…slowly! Start with adding 1/4 cup water, blend and assess. If too thick, add another 1/4 cup water and blend again. The final result should be creamy, but not runny. (Each brand of tahina will give a slightly different thickness so you always have to experiment a little.)

Optional: You can also add 1/2 cup of fresh parsley and blend. Fresh parsley is highly recommended over dried parsley for this recipe (in the Middle East, no one uses dried parsley in tahina!). If you use dried parsley (which I do not recommend simply because fresh parsley tastes 1,000x better), add only 1 Tbsp. of dried parsley. The garlic and paprika are also optional, depending on your taste.

Tip: For garlic, try to find organic garlic which, not only is a normal size like you see in the photo and not GMO-ed gargantuan size, but organic garlic has a nice, mild fresh taste. The gigantic non-organic garlic from China (sold in most supermarkets) has an unnaturally strong taste (perhaps in relation to it’s unnaturally large size!). Choose organic garlic to really enjoy the subtle flavor of this healing food.

Note: The dressing should keep in the fridge for up to 7 days.

How to Eat

In Israel, this salad dressing is on the table with nearly every meal and most often eaten with a classic ‘Israeli Salad’ or ‘Arab Salad,’ consisting of finely chopped cucumber, fresh parsley and tomato. However, you can use it on any raw food salad as a tasty dressing. Try this combo: Peel 3 organic carrots and then grate with a normal size grater into a bowl. Add 1 celery stalk chopped, fresh romaine lettuce chopped, and 1 cucumber peeled and chopped. Mix all ingredients well and drizzle 4 Tbsp. of the Tahini Salad Dressing on top.

Share good health with family & friends!

Another option is to serve this as a dip with freshly sliced cucumber and carrot sticks for a delicious 100% raw food gluten-free vegan snack. I recently brought that to a gathering with many cooked foods eaters, and they loved it!

This is certainly a healthier option than the ‘old-style’ spinach dip made with dairy (mucous-forming) and dried soup mix (containing MSG!) served in a bread bowl. Isn’t it time to start spreading the love and showing your family and friends how delicious raw food can be?!

Another popular Middle Eastern dish made with sesame seeds is called Halva, and it’s traditionally made as a dessert with ground sesame seeds and sugar. You can make a delicious raw food version of Halva using raw sesame seeds and raw honey (or agave). Click here to check out my Recipe for Raw Halva or Sesame Balls.

More Raw Food Dressings & Dips:

Enter my FREE Vitamix Blender Giveaway here!

This Beauty of a Blender could be Yours for FREE!

Imagine starting the New Year with a Vitamix Blender…for FREE! Thanks to the generous folks at Vitamix, I have one FREE Vitamix Blender to giveaway this holiday season! This blog post will tell you everything you need to know about the FREE Vitamix giveaway, so keep reading and be sure to add your comment below! In addition, I’m also offering a FREE online Iridology Analysis and a FREE Green Smoothie DVD and eKit to the lucky winner. This is our way of saying ‘Thank you’ to all of my loyal Twitter followers, clients and Facebook friends. If we are willing to offer you the chance of a clean, fresh start to your health and well-being for 2013, you better believe that we believe in what we do and we believe in you too!

Just in case you don’t know what a Vitamix is, it’s a blender. That means it blends the fiber and the liquid of whatever you put inside. It is not a juicer (a juicer separates the fiber from the liquid, leaving only the liquid for you to drink). A blender is very practical for busy people because it takes a just a few minutes to prepare your creation, is very easy to clean, and with a blender, you get all the nutrients from your food plus you get the fiber too. Most people are simply not eating enough fiber in their daily diet; the result can lead to poor digestion, acid reflux, arthritis, bad skin, weak liver, sluggishness, foul breath and even restless sleep. Getting fiber in your diet is so easy when you simply have 1 healthy smoothie a day. Add superfoods to your smoothie and you can really maximize the power of your foods to get the most fiber, nutrients, minerals and chlorophyll – all valuable tools for healing and all elements needed to make you feel that Healthy Bliss!

The ‘BMW’ of blender motors!

Now you know that the Vitamix is a blender. But I didn’t mention that it is the BMW of blenders. Well, it better be…for a price of $449.00 USD!! It’s the dream blender of every raw foodist and health enthusiast I know, including me! The reason why the Vitamix Blender is considered the best blender on the market is because it has an excellent motor, it’s extremely well made and it’s guaranteed for 7 years. You can blend anything in this blender thanks to that motor, even an avocado seed, it’s true! This is a blender that lasts for life; that’s why people pay a lot for it, because it’s really a long-term investment in your health. I am really excited to have the chance to give this away because I’ve seen the change that my clients have made, and I know that good food is the key.

The Vitamix Blender ($449.00 value): What it can do for you

Enter in the Comments below to Win!

Create every course of your home-cooked meal—from frozen drinks to creamy desserts—in minutes. The Vitamix 5200 is the universal tool for family meals and entertaining. A Vitamix blender is designed and built for outstanding performance and unsurpassed durability. You’ll enjoy:

  • Easy-to-use equipment paired with extreme versatility
  • The ability to chop, cream, blend, heat, grind, churn, and more, with a single machine
  • Quick and easy self-cleaning with a drop of dish soap and warm water; just run on High for 30 seconds
  • 7-year full warranty – Industry’s best
  • Ongoing recipe ideas and community support

An Online Iridology Analysis ($99.95 value): What it can do for you

Iridology is the science of the iris, or colored portion, of the eye. The iris is connected to every organ and tissue of the body by way of the brain and central nervous system through the optic nerve. The optic nerve connects to the central nervous system (CNS) which is the main communication link to everything that goes on in the body.

Jennifer Offers Iridology via Skype, Phone or Email

Jennifer Thompson is a Certified Comprehensive Iridologist (CCI) and offers a complete Iridology Analysis via Skype, email or phone. After taking your iris photos with a digital camera or iPhone, you will email the photos to Jennifer and arrange a time and day to discuss the results. During the reading, Jennifer gives you a good, clear understanding of where your body is at in terms of strengths, weakness, imbalance and any areas of toxicity or inflammation. She makes recommendations for improvement that may involve doing some form of a detox (colon cleanse, heavy metal detox, kidney cleanse, skin cleanse, etc) and a change in diet that may include adding certain foods to your diet and reducing/minimizing others.

  • The skype call is 1-hour in length and is recorded. The video file is sent to you by email after the call.
  • Any skype chat is also sent by email after the call so you have all records of any scientific terms discussed.
  • Follow-up Q&A by email is available for up to 2 months your consultation to ensure you have all knowledge and information needed to achieve your goals.

Green Smoothie DVD and eKit ($69.95 value): What it can do for you

The Green Smoothie DVD and eKit Course

Jennifer’s Instructional DVD will make you a Green Smoothie Expert! Find out for yourself why thousands of people are turning to Green Smoothies for more energy, better health, detox & weight loss! Are you not experiencing the level of energy and good health you desire? Green Smoothies could be your answer to start getting results. Jennifer’s NEW Green Smoothie Power DVD teaches you how!

With the DVD, you also receive 3 eBooks. Use the Quick Reference Guide eBook to get started immediately. Read the How to Make Green Smoothies eBook for inspiration and motivation. Experiment with 200 amazing recipes in the Green Smoothie Recipe eBook. You can be making your first Green Smoothie within minutes!

  • Green Smoothie DVD by Jennifer Thompson
  • How to Make Green Smoothies eBook by Jennifer Thompson
  • Green Smoothie Quick Start Guide eBook by Jennifer Thompson
  • 200 Green Smoothie Recipes for Your Health & Well-Being eBook by Jennifer Thompson
  • How to Sprout and How to Make Nut/Seed Milk book by Jennifer Thompson
  • Set of 2 Sprout and Nut/Seed Milk Bags (9.5×11″, 100% Cotton)

Sample Smoothie Recipe for the Lucky Vitamix Winner

Here’s a fun recipe to make in a your new Vitamix Blender: Hearty Selenium Boosting High Anti-Oxidant Smoothie! This Smoothie is so fast, easy and yummy! It’s perfect for a cold winter morning or after a workout when you’re really hungry and want something filling!

Now that’s some Healthy Bliss!

INGREDIENTS
– 1 red apple, cut into slices and core
– 1 banana
– 1 large handful of fresh blackberries
– 1/3 cup raw walnuts
– 1 Tbsp. organic tahini (sesame paste)
– 2 Tbsp. ground flax seed
– 1 Tbsp. Fresh organic aloe vera juice
– 1/2 cup filtered water

DIRECTIONS
Place all ingredients in a blender. Blend until smooth. Pour into a glass and enjoy!

Blackberries are very high in anti-oxidants (for immune system); Tahini is high in calcium (for the bones); Walnuts are high in selenium (for the brain); Aloe vera is great for the skin and digestion. Let your food be your medicine!

How to Sign-Up for the FREE Vitamix Giveaway

All you need to do is this:

1. Follow me (@rawfoodbliss) on twitter
2. Follow Vitamix (@vitamix) on twitter
3. Leave a Comment on this post, answering the following question:



What is one positive change that you’ve made in your diet and how has your health improved as a result?


Thanks for entering, and Good Luck!

That’s it, you will be entered in the giveaway.

All entries must be received by 25 December 2012 at 12 midnight USA EST.
The winner will be announced on 26 December, 2012 at 12 noon USA EST.

The winner will receive a FREE Vitamix Blender, a FREE online Iridology Analysis and a FREE Green Smoothie DVD eKit course.

This contest is open up to all entries worldwide. Please note: The winner will receive a blender with whatever voltage is required for their country (either 220v or 110v). Any import duties imposed at delivery (for an international winner outside of USA or EU) are the sole responsibilty of the recipient.

Answer this in the comments below:
What is one positive change that you’ve made in your diet and how has your health improved as a result?

Your comment will not appear immediately as all comments are moderated for spam before approval. The winner will be contacted by email, and will also be announced on my Twitter feed and Facebook page on December 26, 2012 at 12 noon USA EST. Thank you!

And the winner is…….
Lois and Earl Stokes of Volcano, Hawaii!!

Congratulations to Lois and here is her entry:

“My husband had a stroke and found out that he was a diabetic one year ago. We have turned his diabetes around (no more insulin shots) and have improved his blood work by limiting processed foods and drinking two green smoothies a day. I as a side benefit have lost 30 pounds and no longer suffer from bowel spasms. Mahalo (Thank You) for this generous offer and for the opportunity to become a winner. Actually I am already a winner because of our lifestyle change.”

Thank you to everyone who entered this amazing contest…I wish I had a free Vitamix to give to all of you…..your stories of healing touched my heart!!

More on Vitamix:

How to Eat Out and Order Raw Food in Normal Restaurants

It’s not easy to find 100% raw food when you are out and about, in restaurants, at a friend’s house or traveling. You may be in situations where you do not have easy access to raw foods or any healthy food at all. Without a plan, you may be tempted to eat the wrong foods that you know aren’t good for you. Don’t worry! The longer you lead a healthy, vegan and/or raw food diet, the easier these things become. When you go out, simply be prepared to either bring your own raw foods and/or order off the menu.

Rule Number 1: Don’t be Afraid to Order Off the Menu

Eating out on a raw food diet

But the real key to this rule is: don’t make it a big deal either. As for ordering off the menu, remember that you are paying for the food and it is ok to ask for what you want. But, at the same time, you don’t need to announce your ‘perfect rawness’ to the waiter and everyone in your party in such a way that other people will feel bad for ordering cooked food (or even worse, meat and dairy!). After I scan the menu, I will usually excuse myself to go to the toilet and I will discuss my requests with the waiter or manager privately. That way, my requests don’t disturb the rest of the group (especially if I’m with people I don’t know very well, for example friends of friends, etc.).

In my experience, the worst thing to do is to say something like, ‘well I eat only raw vegan food and there is nothing for me here.’ Comments like that will only isolate you from your non-raw food friends and family and does not make for a pleasant start of a happy, peaceful meal.

If, for any reason, I cannot order anything in a restaurant (which is very rare unless it is Indian food where everything is already cooked and in that case, I would prefer to choose another type of restaurant), I simply order herbal tea and explain that I had a late lunch and I’m not hungry. For me, this is a normal way of life and I would much rather skip a meal than eat something I don’t want. I am more than happy to wait until I’m back at home to make a salad or smoothie that I really enjoy!

Rule Number 2: Bring Spices, Fresh Herbs, Nuts or Seeds to make any Salad taste Great

Cherry tomatoes, cayenne, nutritional yeast, pumpkin seeds, dried herbs and walnuts

When I go out, I always bring a small container of cayenne pepper, some nutritional yeast and a good quality sea salt. Sometimes I will also bring a small bottle of Bragg’s Lquid Amino Acids or Raw Apple Cider Vinegar. Occasionally I will bring fresh herbs (dill, parsley, or basil), raw nuts (like walnuts), and cherry tomatoes. That way, I always have something easy to transport and healthy and tasty to add to any salad.

When I look at a menu, I try to find all the veggies. Then I ask the waiter if they can make me a special salad made from whatever veggies I find – say broccoli, tomato, carrot, spinach, beetroot, and sun dried tomato as an example. I explain that I am happy to pay more for an entree-sized portion. I specify ‘nothing cooked, just raw and chopped’ and I may ask for some fresh chopped garlic and olive oil on the side. I tell them ‘no salad dressing, no soy sauce.’ When the salad arrives, I add my own extra spices and voila! Most of the time I get something very nice. And, many times, people with me wish they had ordered it too!

If a restaurant has vegetables on their menu, they can surely make you a salad, so it is always worth asking for what you really want!

Rule Number 3: Bring Your Own Salad

If I am invited to someone’s house for a party or dinner, I always offer to bring the salad. Usually I will bring 2 or 3 salads to really give people a nice intro to raw foods (what better way to get people excited about raw food!). And the good thing about that is there is always plenty of food for me to eat too!

Over the years or being raw, I have discovered that it can be too difficult and stressful for other people to try and accommodate my eating habits, so I don’t say anything about my food requirements when invited to a party. I’ve seen people, in their best efforts, make me a salad with commercial salad dressing already added, or swearing that something has no MSG when it does, and every other mishap in between so I have long learned that it is simply easier for everyone if I bring my own. People who know me personally of course know that I will bring yummy salads and they usually look forward to seeing what new creations I have to share!

Healthy Recipes:

Top 5 Tips on How to Recover from Jet Lag & Travel

So you’ve booked the ticket, researched hotels, checked out internet options and chosen a few local sites to see, but have you made a conscious plan to stay healthy while on the road? It is possible to stay healthy while traveling. The first obstacle to overcome is jet lag.

Be gentle with the body during travel and you can minimize the effects of Jet Lag naturally.

All information in this article is for educational purposes only.
It is not for the diagnosis, treatment, prescription or cure of any disease or health condition.

Use your raw food/detox knowledge to travel healthier!

Frequent flyers know how hard it can be to adjust to local times after a long flight. The body is sensitive to the earth’s magnetic pull.

As Dr. Gabriel Cousins says, ‘Moving through time zones and magnetic lines causes a cellular confusion that manifests as the body’s homeostasis begins to shift into the new time frame and rhythm.’

That ‘cellular confusion’ is what makes you feel Jet Lag.

Top 5 Tips on How to Recover from Jet Lag

1. Avoid all alcohol the day before and during flights.

Reducing the amount of toxins and free radicals in the body will automatically help. If you have the tendency to feel stressed or fearful while on airplanes, opt for option #4 instead of having an alcoholic drink. Alcohol is a also diarrhetic, which means you will become even more dehydrated after traveling at high altitude on a dry plane. Your skin and kidneys don’t need that!

2. Fast on herbal teas or eat only fresh fruit on your journey.

Bring your own dried herbal teas and ask for hot water during the flight. Carry a few oranges or other fresh fruits to enjoy. Opening an orange mid-flight is a great natural way to freshen up the stale plane air as well! (You are permitted to take fresh fruit on a plane as long as you eat it before your destination. I’ve taken fruit on every flight from nearly every airline to many countries, and I’ve never been refused!) Fasting is the perfect way to recharge and renew on a cellular level, so can you see how it would help with Jet Lag? Makes sense!

3. Avoid all airplane food!

Airplane food is processed food, full of salt, chemical additives and colorings and preserved to still look fresh by the time it gets to your seat. Even if it is a lacto-ovo vegan meal, it is not a healthy meal. Airplane food can make you feel bloated, tired, constipated and sick on it’s own – not a good thing to add to time zone stress! If you have felt puffy or bloated after long flights in the past, it could have been the food. Food additives, salt and hidden sugars in food can create inflammation. These are especially important to avoid while traveling on airplanes through several time zones.

4. Try Kava Kava capsules for sleeping or relaxing on long flights.

Kava is native to the Pacific Islands and has natural relaxing qualities as well as mood-elevating and pain-relieving effects. Take 3-4 capsules when you get on board and sit back for a healthy, relaxing flight! My suggestion to use Kava is for a long-flight to help relieve tension and promote natural relaxation while traveling. Taking 3-4 capsules is perfectly safe and is a natural, non-dedyhrating, non-free-radical forming solution for the body. (With regards to some people’s worry that Kava is harmful to the liver; please note that Kava is not meant to be taken for more than 30 days continually because it can be habit-forming. That said, so can alcohol….but no one seems to worry about that!!)

5. Eat only fresh raw fruits for the first day upon arrival.

Fresh fruit: hydrating and full of vitamins & anti-oxidants

Eat fruits such as apple, pineapple, mango, pear or papaya. Add berries for more anti-oxidants to help reduce free-radical damage from low-oxygen airplane air. Eating raw food for one day is a gentle, easy cleanse and a great way to get your colon re-adjusted to the new time zone as well! (Dried fruits are dehydrated and the body will already be dehydrated after a long flight, so especially for the first day, fresh is best.)

Your travels can actually become a new avenue to discover more about raw food, natural healing and healthy living!

More on Healthy Travel:

How to Clean the Lymphatic System & Detox the Skin in 5 Simple Steps

Clean skin from the inside out

All information in this article is for educational purposes only.
It is not for the diagnosis, treatment, prescription or cure of any disease or health condition.

The skin is an organ, and in fact it is the largest organ in the entire body. It is also an eliminative organ, meaning it assists the body in detoxification by pushing out toxins directly through the cells and membrane of the skin. If you do not have a natural, healthy glow, it means that your body inside is overloaded with toxins. Nothing that you try on the outside will give you long-term positive results as long as you continue to hold on to too much toxicity inside.

How does the lymph system affect healthy, clear skin and sparkling eyes?

The lymphatic fluid rests just below the skin; if it is toxic or sluggish (from processed foods, smoking, chemical body products, lack of exercise), the skin simply won’t look good. A healthy glow comes from the inside out. Even the fluid in the eyes is lymphatic fluid. The cleaner your are inside, the brighter and clearer your eyes will be – truly a window to your health!

What happens to the skin when lymphatic drainage becomes sluggish?

If the lymphatic system becomes sluggish, it will try to ‘off-gas’ through the skin. If someone is wearing nylon or ployester clothes or putting chemical creams on their skin, there is nowhere for those toxins to go (imagine wrapping yourself in plastic wrap). So those toxins get re-absorbed. That’s creates a back-log of internal work. This is where a detox can be a good idea to give all the organs a chance to catch up. From there, living a cleaner lifestyle, with natural foods, natural clothes, regular exercise and only natural chemical-free products on the skin (especially deodorant) keeps the lymph and skin happy.

What foods for improve or stimulate the function of the lymphatic system?

Remember, your body is ‘a community’ of organs. A natural whole and pure diet is always best. A simple rule for the skin is this: if you can’t eat it, it shouldn’t be put on the skin. If you have to use something, go for the baby product line (for sunblock or laundry detergent). They will always have less chemicals. A simple rule for lymph is this: Keep the lymph moving with movement (exercise). Drink plenty of water. Avoid foods with chemical coloring, flavoring, sugar replacements and preseratives which all add more internal housework to the body.

What lifestyle habits improve the function of natural lymphatic drainage?

Stretch, walk or swim to help clean the lymph

The lymphatic system is a cirulatory system in the body. It’s cleaning cells and dumping toxins into the blood all the time to keep the body clean. But, unlike the blood, the lymphatic system has no pump. If you don’t move, the lymph doesn’t move. It waits for movement to ‘surf’ from the contraction of muscles. So, in order to keep the lymph moving and clean, you have to move! Exercise is the best for lymphatic. Many people who sit all day long develop a sluggish lymphatic system simply because they do not move! Lymph like gentle exercise, like walking, stretching, swimming or yoga. Go for a walk during lunch, stretch throughout the day and develop a regular exercise routine. Dry skin brushing and wearing natural fiber clothes also allows the skin and lymph to breathe.

To keep your skin clean, you’ve gotta have a clean lymphatic system. You cannot get clear skin from the outside in; it has to happen from the inside out. Every organ in the body affects every other organ in the body. Treat your body as a whole and you will long-term results that last.

5 Steps to Keep your Lymphatic System & Skin Clean:

1. Avoid nylon and polyester clothes.

Opt for all natural fibers that allow the skin to breathe, such as cotton, hemp, wool, or silk (note that silk and wool are not technically ‘vegan’ fabrics).

2. Avoid skin creams and body lotions with chemicals that suffocate the skin.

Choose natural moisturizers such as virgin organic coconut oil. Coconut oil is non-greasy and very affordable when compared to the cost of multiple skin products. In winter months, try cold-pressed virgin organic olive oil. The olive oil is more moisturizing and works well against dry skin in cold months. Remember, if you can’t eat it, it shouldn’t be put on the skin. Be sure to use an aluminum-free deodorant.

3. If you have to choose a chemical product, always choose the baby version.

Buy organic baby sunblock, baby dish detergent, or baby washing detergent. The baby formulas will always have less chemicals and less sodium lauryl ethyl sulfate (SLS), the chemical agent that creates sudsy bubbles in cleaning products.

4. For face, look for products with natural essential oil combinations and fresh herbs for daytime use.

At night, use virgin organic coconut oil before bed as a wonderful non-greasy moisturizer. Argan Oil is a nice option for the face. Be sure to find 100% organic and only Argan Oil (without any other ingredients). I’ve seen 100% certified organic Argan Oil on iherb.com. If it’s your first time buying on iherb, you can receive $5-$10 off your first purchase by using this link: iherb rewards. I use iherb all the time for my fluoride-free toothpaste, organic soap, virgin organic coconut oil, hemp seed, spirulina powder, organic raw apple cider vinegar and so much more. They always have the lowest price!

Ready to get started? Check out my personal shopping cart with all of my favorite skin & body products, all natural and organic of course!

I use Dr. Bronners Balm for the lips

For lips, I recommend an Australian product called Paw Paw ointment – it’s a fermented papaya salve and is wonderful for the lips and also for cuts, scratches, burns and even diaper rash. There is a non-petroleum version available by PhytoCare. If you’re in the USA and looking for something more local, I recommend the Dr. Bronner’s Baby Mild Organic Baby Balm. This stuff works great for lips and is also good for any dry patches of skin.

5. Keep the lymph moving with movement (exercise).

Drink plenty of water. Avoid foods with chemcial coloring, flavoring, sugar replacements and preseratives which all add more internal housework to the body. Practice dry skin brushing. As a treat, book a lymphatic drainage massage every 3 months, and especially at the end of a detox or cleanse to help keep lymph clean.

(Yoga photo from sheknows.)

<strong>More on Skin Cleansing:</strong>

Is it safe to detox while pregnant or breastfeeding?

To detox or not when pregnant?

All information in this article is for educational purposes only.
It is not for the diagnosis, treatment, prescription or cure of any disease or health condition.

This is a question I get asked over and over by new and expecting mothers who are concerned with high-boosting their mineral reserve, detoxifying for a healthy baby and losing weight and getting in shape after giving birth. They think that if they do a detox while pregnant, they may start to feel better and gain energy during their pregnancy and maybe even increase the chance of having a healthier baby. While breastfeeding, many new mothers feel tired and toxic after having gained weight and given birth and hope that a detox will give them a reboot. This an important issue to discuss especially with all the over-the-counter at-home detox programs that people have access to do on their own with no guidance or support. My answer to this question is unequivocally without exception: NO.

It is not safe to detox while pregnant or breastfeeding under any circumstances in any country at any age for any woman.

When a woman is pregnant, her body needs to focus on doing one thing: making a new life. It does not need the distraction of splitting energy between detox (internal housekeeping) and creating new life. Pregnancy is a time for abundance in healthy, clean, vibrant foods and plenty of relaxation and rest. Most detoxes require cleansing supplements, something that should never be done during pregnancy because #1) some supplements are not safe to take while pregnant and #2) detox supplements split the body’s energy between detox and making baby. Additionally, during the process of detox, toxins are temporarily stirred up into the blood before they are broken down and carried out through the kidneys, colon, lungs and skin. Having toxins in the blood is the last thing a pregnant mother would want or need. Some detoxes include taking high amounts of Vitamin C. Vitamin C, when consumed in high doses, can stop the body from making progesterone, a vital hormone in pregnancy. (This is why doctors advise against eating too much pineapple while pregnant. Pineapple is particularly high in Vitamin C.) Please do not consider doing any type of detox while pregnant.

The same goes for breastfeeding for all the reasons listed above. Furthermore, if a woman does a detox while breastfeeding, she can actually still up toxins (including heavy metals) into her breast milk, and unknowingly feed those toxins directly to her newborn. While breastfeeding, the focus should not be on losing weight.

Eat foods rich in nutrients and high in vegan plant-based protein so your body has the power to make the healthiest milk ever for your baby.

When you are finished breastfeeding, you may consider doing a detox. Actually, the best time to do a detox is one year before you get pregnant. Yes – one year! That way, you have plenty of time to do multiple cleanses including kidney, colon, gallstone/liver and heavy metal detoxification and then have ample time to rebuild with a nutrient dense diet to best prepare your body for a safe, clean and healthy pregnancy. If you are thinking of having another baby, the time to start your detox is after you are finished breastfeeding and before you start trying to get pregnant again. Even if you only have 1-3 months, it’s worth it.

If you’re suffering from constipation during your pregnancy, please do not consider doing an enema. The main reasons why I do not recommend enemas during pregnancy are because #1) you can temporarily stir up toxins into the blood while disrupting the fecal matter before it is released, and #2) the inflow of water into the colon can put pressure on the uterus and fetus.

Rather, I suggest you increase high-fiber foods and reduce wheat and white breads as much as possible to relieve constipation due to pregnancy. Think of wheat as concrete in the colon and avoid it especially if you are feeling backed up. Try adding 2 Tbsp of ground flax seed to every meal (either a smoothie, fruit salad, veggie salad or even mix in with cooked veggies). This will significantly increase your fiber intake and should get things moving. If it is ‘too much’ movement, reduce to 2 Tbsp. of ground flax seed at 2 meals daily or even 2 Tbsp. at 1 meal per day (Note that the flax seed must be ground and not whole).

I’ve advised many female clients on preparing their body for pregnancy and also eating the right foods while pregnant and breastfeeding, all with great success. I’ve even seen cases of infertility and IVF with no success until they followed my specialized preparing for pregnancy detox plan. After 3 months, I had one client get pregnant after being on IVF for 8 years. I’ve also helped women to start menstruation again, even after years of not having any cycle. All of these things are possible with the right detox and follow-up diet, but timing is key to make sure it’s safe for baby, mother or mother-to-be.

More on Pregnancy:

After Your Detox: How to Eat, What to Do

Keep Your Results After Your Detox

All information in this article is for educational purposes only.
It is not for the diagnosis, treatment, prescription or cure of any disease or health condition.

How are the stress levels lately? Pretty bad, huh? Have the post-fast fruit platters been replaced with too many fast food fixes and late night binging? Are you secretly dreaming of going back for another detox, fast & cleanse, a chance to rest, recharge, reset and renew? Well you are not alone! If you’ve been to one of my Healthy Habits Detox talks in Koh Samui, you’ll remember my story and know that I have been down that path before myself. Long-term, the real challenge lies in making long-term positive change to your daily habits outside of the fasting times. You don’t have to wait until you can make it back to Thailand, or after the friend’s party, work project, holiday weekend, or after New Year’s to start. Remember, your health is your biggest asset! If you don’t spend money on your food, you will spend it on a doctor! You deserve only the very best in life, so start giving your body the very best too! You can start to make positive change today. Imagine starting your next detox, cleanse or fast being more healthy than when you left last time – you can do it! I believe in me, and I believe in you too!

Remember, the real work starts after your detox. Knowing what to eat and how to continue detoxing will ensure you keep the weight off and stay healthy. Going back to what you did before will only get you back to how you felt before: tired, bloated and toxic. You will have to implement some long-term changes to make sure your post cleanse results stay around for the long-term.

Here are 4 Healthy Habits you can Start Today:

Fresh fruit day, More raw foods

 

1. One day a week fruit day

Remember my recommendation to make Mondays your ‘Fruitday’? Just by eating one day a week of only fresh fruits, you can give all of your organs a rest and a cleanse, clean out the bowel, have a mini-detox, high-boost on vitamins and re-calibrate your mind for healthy food choices for the week.

If you do one day a week of fruit only for 7 years, you will have eaten a 100% fruit only diet for one full year of your life! Don’t underestimate the power of a one-day cleanse! If you are more advanced, you can consider doing a one day a week juice feast. I recommend green juices, such as cucumber, lemon, ginger, apple, parsley and celery.

2. Eat more raw foods

You don’t have to go 100% raw food vegan in order to reap the benefits of fresh, live, high-enzyme, nutritious raw foods. Try to eat one raw food meal a day, whether it be a yummy fruit salad for breakfast, a delicious salad for lunch or a Green Smoothie for dinner. Watch as your energy levels naturally increase. See how your skin clears, your eyes brighten and you begin to emit a nice, healthy glow. Feel your clothes loosen and enjoy receiving compliments from others who notice the positive difference in you!

3. Forgive, Love & Let Go

Yes, we have to go there too! The spirit needs healing just as much as the physical body. You can eat a perfect 100% raw food, organic diet and still manifest dis-ease if you do not start forgiving, loving and letting go in life! Always remember, nothing can hurt you unless you give it your consent! Happiness has to start within. We cannot depend on others for our happiness. The search for a happy man’s shirt found a happy man who did not own a shirt! Do you get it?? Start loving today! Smile!

4. Live More Natural, Whole & Pure!

This one is easy. What kind of deodorant are you using? Get an aluminum-free version that works. Replace your cleaning products with vinegar and sodium bicarbonate. Buy local and organic when possible. Save money and make your own fresh delicious sprouts and nut milks at home with reusable cotton sprout and nut milk bags! Replace your chemical makeup with healthy, natural, organic alternatives! A good website for chemical-free makeup is earthsbeauty.com.

Replace any old toxic body products with fluoride-free toothpaste, all natural soap and virgin organic coconut oil (a great moisturizer for the skin). I buy all that stuff online. Making better choices for your body products gives you better overall health. When you reduce the amount of ‘retox,’ you can keep the benefits of your detox!

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