How Raw Food Changed My Life!
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I felt blessed with a good metabolism growing up, and thought I could eat anything I wanted. I grew up in a household where everything was made from scratch. I remember taking my own lunches and getting made fun of for bringing wheat bread sandwiches. I peered longingly at the Ding Dongs and other sugary treats kids would bring, the white fluffy bread, and the candy and pop. "Why was my mom so mean to me?", I thought.
I remember the day I got $20 in the mail for my birthday. I grabbed my friend and ran to the nearest store and we loaded up a cart with all kinds of chips, candy, pop, cakes and cookies, and ice cream. $20 bought a lot in those days. We took everything over to the playground at our school across the street and devoured it all until we felt sick! When I left for college, I went a little crazy there too. FREEDOM from my suppressed lifestyle back home felt amazing.
Well, when I turned 39 yrs. old, my body said, "NO MORE! I CANNOT SUSTAIN THIS!" I had a breakdown emotionally and physically and was ready to die from the pain I was in. I remember being on the couch one day in so much pain I was begging for God to take my life. I didn't want to live in this body anymore! Luckily for me, He showed me a better way -- Raw Food was my answer.
I have been eating Raw Food for 4 years now and have gone though many ups and downs emotionally since then. When we change the way we eat or do anything that is attached to our emotions, our mind and body fight it. I had a sugar addiction that I thought was impossible to control. Being a cake decorator for 30 years was my way of making my addiction to sugar appear normal; in fact, I got praised for the amazing creations I presented to people. When I had to give that up, it was like a death in the family. I mourned the loss of my lifelong desire for a Professional Cake Shop and the ability to express myself.
I have found, however, that I can still be creative. The medium has just changed. I am now learning how to carve fruits and vegetables and how to arrange and present nature's amazingly bright colored foods in beautiful ways. I feel better physically, emotionally, and spiritually from changing the way I eat and now that is enhanced by the way I am able to express my talents with it.
I teach Raw Food Classes and share this lifestyle with all who want to learn more about it. I am currently writing a book and hope to further my creative outlets in many different ways that are not harmful to my body.
What is your story?
Raw Chef Wendy
Thanks for answering my questions, Raw Chef Wendy. It's nice to hear someone's personal story and the things they discovered. You definitely make it sound appealing. Just one more question: Do you ever get tired of what you eat? Meaning do you have enough variety in your diet to not get sick or bored of what you eat?
1. Make a beautiful vegetable or fruit tray with a healthy dip for your kids to come home to and snack on instead of the usual pantry raid. The bright colors attract them and they love the tastes more than the typical candy and sweet treats the more they have these simple snack from nature.
2. Put out a bowl of berries. My kids will eat berries like crazy when they are available.
3. Instead of candy dishes, soak nuts like pecans, walnuts, and the harder nuts in water overnight or for a couple of hours to get the enzyme inhibitors off and they taste better too! They aren't bitter and they are easier to digest. Dry them on a paper towel for 8 hours in the air or in a dehydrator at 105 F. You can flavor them before drying with a little honey or agave and cinnamon, or try olive oil and your favorite spices. I love the Wild Tree spices because they have such great flavor. You can create many things with them.
4. For snacks on the go, make a gallon sized ziplock bag full of veggies the night before a busy day, get a small bag of flavored, sprouted nuts like the ones described above, and a bottle of pure water. It satisfies and the kids love it.
5. I will often take a variety of salads with me for business lunches instead of going out. I find a cozy corner and curl up to my large salad with 1 diced avocado, carrots, cherry tomatoes, cucumbers, radishes, celery, and any other veggie I have on hand. Then I put on a nice dressing and enjoy!
6. Taking your own food to get-togethers really helps too or I will eat ahead so I'm not hungry. People often comment on what I am eating and it really hurt my feelings at first, but I learned that they just didn't understand what it was I was eating and their taste buds hadn't changed like mine, so when they tried it they didn't like it. I use these as opportunities now to teach people about the benefits of Raw Food and tell them my story.
I hope those tips help you.
I decided to go 100% Raw right off, and after 3 days I woke up with amazing energy, whereas before I had chronic fatigue and had to have 12 to 14 hours of sleep. I slept all the time and never felt awake or energetic. After just 3 days and 8 hours of sleep I was refreshed for the first time! After 1 week most of my symptoms were gone such as: chronic and debilitating neck and back pain, chronic fatigue, hypoglycemia, constipation, no libido, headaches, brain fog, short-term memory loss, anger, impatience, no motivation, digestive issues, gas, and the list went on. But the longer I stayed on, the faster I cleansed and it became too much to handle. I decided to back off a bit and add some cooked foods back in and some salmon and eggs after having a mental breakdown. This calmed me down a bit.
I have been on a roller coaster trying to learn how to balance everything out. I am not 100% raw, but I do eat a high raw food diet. Sometimes I treat myself with some wild salmon or Organic eggs, but that is maybe once or twice a month. I eat sprouted nuts and seeds, and I create all sorts of delicious meals that are simple and very healthy. True Raw Foodists are vegan, but I restricted myself to the point of not feeling like I could eat anything! I remember calling my mom and sobbing and she said, "Just eat Wendy." so I did. We can become extreme at anything if we try too hard.
I feel energetic living this way and would like to become 100% raw vegan some day, but I believe my body needs time to adjust to this lifestyle after the abuse I gave it early on and from eating meat and dairy at every meal. I have also been working with a person who does energy clearing and that has helped me deal with the emotions associated with food that I have been shoving down. Yes, I still have times when I indulge a little, like at social gatherings. It is difficult to not eat what everyone is eating, but I have learned some tips and tricks to get through it.
I teach classes to help people learn how to add more raw foods into the meals they are used to and how to slowly transition over to more raw foods. I hope that helps answer your questions.
I know when you make big changes to diet it can be a very emotional thing. How long did it take you to go completely raw? Do you ever indulge yourself now? Sorry for all the questions, I'm just curious.