How Your Diet is Linked to Your Passion

Do you know what you want to do with your life, but you just waffle away your hours doing bullshit? Twiddling around, staring at screens, blubbering on about nothing, scrolling comment sections that are bombarded by trolls who do nothing with their lives? Why are you doing those things? What is stopping you from doing what would make your life spectacular?

Is it:

Lack of energy?
Fear, anxiety?
Lack of self-confidence?
Fear of failure?
Pathetic drone-like existence?
Ennui?
Mental health issues?
“Trapped” in corporate slavery?
Capitalism?

It could be one, all, or a combination of these – but when your passion burns bright enough, you can go for anything, no matter what your situation is. You will find a way.

However, if you are taking shit care of yourself, you will not likely have the vigor, the enthusiasm, or self-love that is imperative in actually going for it. Your brain clarity is fogged – when you can CLEAR it, and see everything as it is – pristine, obvious – you can find ways, options, and paths that were not noticeable before.

When you clean up your diet, and you are eating the way your body is designed to, abundant energy is freed up, and this blindness you’ve had forever is suddenly gone. The paths appear.

Diet and lifestyle are crucial to everything in life, if you want it to be as stellar as possible, and this includes being able to pursue what you truly love. Some people can do this anyway, regardless of how they treat themselves, but for the vast majority of people, this just isn’t the case. Most people are numbed out – by distractions, by chemicals in their “food,” by monotonous brainwashing they have heard their whole lives – telling them to be realistic, telling them what they want is not feasible. Eventually people become so jaded that they settle into a boring trap they never envisioned for themselves.

Eating only raw foods is like taking a truth serum.

You can’t hide from yourself anymore. You become too sensitive – if you ignore your true passions, you become depressed, so much so that you will eventually explode and become a firebolt heading in the direction you need to go.

You absolutely CANNOT ignore your desires anymore – you can’t deny yourself what you truly love. Because, now, you will love yourself.

Feeding yourself pristine food and nourishing your entire being is the ultimate act of self-love, because it frees you up – it frees you from the worry of illness, it frees you from lethargy, and you realize how much you’ve been lied to, and how much you’ve lied to yourself.

If you feel like you’re missing something, you likely are. A one-way ticket to getting where you want to go is to put yourself first and focus solely on what you physically and mentally consume. Raw plant foods, and positive input only. Ignore the gossip, ignore the comments sections, ignore media if you have to, and only take in what is going to propel you forward.

What’s the alternative? Being held back, being stuck, being unhappy, sick, depressed. Who wants that?

The bullet train to euphoric passion is raw, fresh foods. So simple, but for those who’ve tried – you know. You’ve found magic.

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Dogmatic Diet Guidelines and My Typical Daily Raw Vegan Meals

I’ve been on the raw food path for six and a half years now. Do I follow 80/10/10 low fat raw vegan diet? Sort of.

I have followed it strictly in the past. At times I have adhered to many people’s “instructions” even if they made little sense to me.

I like Bruce Lee’s advice (and it applies to everything) – Adapt what is useful, reject what is useless, and add what is specifically your own. Eliminate the non-essential.

Do you need 3000 calories a day just because someone says so? Unlimited calories! It makes SO much sense, right? Come on. Eat what you USE. Figure out what is absolutely necessary for you to function at your best and fuel you through the activities you love. Otherwise you are taking in calories you do not need, and you are spending money on food which you could spend on other things you enjoy doing. Don’t make your whole life about food.

A lot of people who come to raw foods are so transformed that they want to make every aspect of their life about it (myself included – I was a zealot at first)! They want to be gurus, open a restaurant, coach people, or be youtube celebrities – and that’s fine if it is not making you forget other things you were previously passionate about.

Being healthy is the catalyst to help propel you towards the things you love with ENERGY and INTENSITY. The healthier you are, the more you will be able to go after your dreams. Health and nutrition are far more important than a set of rules or dogma.

I’ve read so much about different ways to be raw over the last 6.5 years. I continue to experiment but also stick to what I know works as my base and I advise you to do the same. Nutrition is fascinating, and also confusing. This is why you have to try things for yourself and see what happens. You should be energized, strong, clear headed, slim, satisfied, hydrated, and with great digestion.

So what have I learned? No one knows everything, and if they claim to, take what makes sense and then THINK FOR YOURSELF. Remember, things like 80/10/10 are “more like guidelines than actual rules.

Don’t let anyone dictate to you what is right or not right for you. Ethics are always important to keep in mind, and there are set beliefs I have that will not change, but they make SENSE to me. If something does not ring true to you on a DEEP level, then question it. Research. Keep open. Do not take what anyone says to you as gospel. When this sort of thing happens it is dogma, and it is cultish and extremist. Being rigid allows you to easily break and be taken advantage of.

Every time I had issues with something I learned from a raw food “leader” I tried something else to tweak what made sense.

When I had awful dandruff, skin rashes and dryness on 80/10/10 I was convinced it was an allergy, or that I was not drinking enough water, or that it was the overdose of sugar causing it even though I felt good otherwise. What was it? I found out it was LACK of sodium – this took me about 2 years to discover on my own by eating some cooked food over the winter and having my skin miraculously turn soft and beautiful again. Lack of sodium probably causes a lot of people on low fat raw vegan to turn to cooked foods as they may demonize salt as I used to do (and many people do not eat nearly enough vegetables or greens on a low fat raw vegan diet). It is not failure, it is lack of knowledge and listening to people who claim to know EVERYTHING, when they do not.

So what do I eat these days? I am not as rigid as I once was, and I will have something cooked once in a while (usually hummus) but I accept the consequences (headache, runny nose) and try to keep it rare. It is a CHOICE for me, and not a failure or a binge.

I am 100% raw most of the time, and that’s what matters (to ME).

Typical Daily Food:

1. I start out with a glass or two of water, depending on how thirsty I am. I usually wake up once to pee in the night because I hate being dehydrated. Usually it’s just plain water, and I have more throughout the day.

2. I have a smoothie. It is usually 1-2 bananas with 2-3 ataulfo mangoes. I might put a date or two in there. Sometimes I use berries, sometimes I now use a tsp of acai powder. I add in 2 tbsp of Warrior Force protein powder (raw vegan) – I am doing this as an experiment because I am wanting to gain more muscle. If you are not trying to gain any muscle mass, you definitely do not need more protein. But if you do want more, then a raw vegan protein is better than anything else. I also add in 1 tbsp of Vitamineral Green.

3. Sometimes, but not every day, I will have a piece or two of raw chocolate. Why? First of all, I really like it, and a small amount of fat after breakfast keeps me going longer without getting hungry. It also gives me magnesium which alleviates my awful menstrual cramps. When I have this almost daily, I get no cramps. Nix it and they come back – doesn’t matter what else I do, this has worked, and I’d rather eat this than take a mineral supplement. Plus it makes me a little extra happy through the day!

4. For a snack I might have dried mulberries or other berries since it’s the season!

5. Lunch I will have a bunch of grapes or another smoothie 🙂 Or sometimes I will gorge on berries. Another snack I have been having is blackberries – I go out and forage for them because they are everywhere right now.

6. For dinner I will sometimes have some fruit (not always) and then a big salad, which generally has a head of greens (arugula, kale, spinach, spring mix), 6-10 campari tomatoes, kelp noodles, some kelp and dulse, cucumber (1/2), zucchini noodles (1), and then a dressing made of tahini (about 1/4 cup), 2 oranges juiced, 1 lemon juiced, a few green onions, and either rosemary or dill. I also add a small amount of cumin and Himalayan salt (very little, only for sodium – I can’t afford to juice tons of celery every day). THE BEST. Once in a while I make guacamole and have that with cucumber slices (instead of the big salad). Sometimes I will have some kombucha.

Other supplements I now take are: cranberry/D-mannose (I am prone to UTIs and this has worked well – it’s the only thing I take daily), probiotics (I was on antibiotics for a UTI early this year and continue to replenish my natural bacteria), B12 sublinguals, D3 (mostly in winter), K2, vegan DHA, zinc. Having the right nutrients is far more important to me than following an extremist diet, and if I can get it through food or sunshine, I do.

So far, out of the last 6.5 years, this is what has made me feel and look the best. I am becoming much more lean and less bloated since doing this. I feel good. If you are miserable on 80/10/10, Raw til 4, or 90/5/5, then TWEAK it. Don’t go overboard with sodium and fat but add some back in! Don’t be scared of it because some OTHER person says to be. Don’t SMASH the calories because someone else does. How do YOU feel? If you only need 2000 cals, then eat that much! Don’t restrict either! Restriction means DEPRIVING yourself. You also don’t need to STUFF yourself. Eating what satisfies you and provides you with the nutrition you need is ENOUGH.

I would say my ratios are about 70/10/20 (carbs, protein, fat) right now and I feel awesome this way. But I am open to changing things again, because I have lost my dogma. Remember – you are a smart individual with INSTINCTS and INTUITION. USE them.

Recommended Reading:

Raw food and health books

Existential Crisis: The Purists are Doomed

Want to be pure?

In a perfect world, a purist lifestyle would be the best, whatever you think “pure” means – pure of heart, pure of mind, pure body? Everyone has a different definition of this, too. “Pure”  is subjective.

We do not live in a perfect world – in fact, we live in a toxic, messed up, fragile world, one that is rife with catastrophic events and violence, no matter how much we want to ignore it or hope that it will vanish. This is an idealistic viewpoint, and I much prefer to live in reality, even if I happen to get swept off in a fantasy ideal sometimes. I always come back down to earth – I always get an anvil to the face in some way, making me wake the fuck up and look at things from ALL sides, take into consideration ALL views, all potential consequences.

And what have I realized lately? That obtaining purity is impossible, of course, but that the more extreme and sensitive you are is likely not going to prolong your life – it will likely hinder you from it in our current circumstances.

So, if you subsist solely on fruits and vegetables and have done so for a lengthy time, and suddenly are in need of a potato, or soup, or even the dreaded animal product, and you get violently ill from it…how the hell are you going to survive if there is a flood/earthquake/drought/hurricane/war/zombie attack/etc and you don’t have access to anything you normally eat? (Just kidding about the zombies…sort of. There are a lot of zombie-like people out there).

I dunno about everyone, obviously, but the reasons I find most people go on a raw food diet are to feel better from being ill, to get slimmer, or to increase their longevity – but has anyone actually thought about how it could HINDER longevity, in terms of a bleak possible future? I like to be positive, but I also like to be realistic, and most places in the world have their particular weaknesses – for instance, I live in an area that could quite possibly be devastated by a massive earthquake – what if I suddenly had to subsist on canned stuff and donated processed foods? I know I am gonna get pretty sick – and I am not even the “purest” eater out there – and actually, because of some deep thought about it, I don’t really want to be so sensitive.

Do I want to be as healthy as possible? Of course. Do I want to be able to survive a dire circumstance? Yes. Why? To get back to the good stuff and live! It’s our only chance – whether you believe in an afterlife or reincarnation or whatever – this is your only time being YOU, NOW, in THIS life you’re living.

I find this hippie mindset of how everything is beautiful and an illusion and just focus on the GOOD can be very damaging – to have a positive attitude is VERY important, yes, but to completely push the idea out of your mind that something bad could happen is foolish, ignorant, and will possibly cost you the life you love so much.

By all means, eat as many fruits and vegetables as possible, but if you are a realistic person, don’t focus on purity too much. It’s ridiculous. In a survival situation, it is the people who are more toxic that will be more likely to survive. Ironic, isn’t it?

I have been having an existential crisis lately – I am questioning a lot of things, especially my dietary dogma. Do I still think raw is best for health? Yes, to some extent. Do I think a fruitarian diet is the best? NO. A high-fruit diet, yes. A high-greens diet, yes. A diet that includes plant-based fats? Yes. I am more and more open-minded, but still will not eat animals or their secretions. If you do I won’t judge you for it, but I hope that you will expose yourself to where it comes from, how it is obtained, and the cruelty involved, and make kinder choices.

Will I always be this way? If I have a choice, YES.

I have had a very long fascination with survival – it all started when I saw Lord of the Flies when I was 11 years old, which then led me to reading the book several times. I have never lost this obsession, and honestly the only thing that has kept me from taking a survival course is that I don’t want to kill anything.

Now that I am taking martial arts, I am thinking about survival in many other ways – including how my diet could hinder me from doing getting through some heinous shit.

Yes, I want to thrive – but I also want to live.

I read a story recently about a guy who was hiking in the canyons with his yellow lab. They were about 2 hours into the hike and his dog overheated. He was a fruitarian guy at the time. His strength failed him in getting his dog out of there, and within an hour his dog died. The guy couldn’t put on a lot of muscle no matter how hard he tried, for years, on the diet. Who are we to say he could? Clearly it didn’t work for him and he shouldn’t be mocked for it. It’s his life, his choice.

How sad is that? Can you imagine not being fit or strong enough to save your dog, your child, your friend? Or fast enough to get away from someone chasing you, or any sort of situation that would rely on your fitness to escape quickly, or strength to lift you up? Can you imagine not being able to lift yourself into a tree to escape an animal that wanted to eat you? Can you imagine falling and hanging on to something and not being able to lift yourself up? Or to be able to help someone else?

This story about the dog gave me a huge shift in how I view fitness. Taking martial arts (which I have been doing sporadically only within the last year, more often lately) has also shifted my mentality towards survival and even somewhat my views on diet.

The infighting amongst the raw food community lately has led me to question everything I believe, who I trust, what actually makes sense, and to look at all sides of everything, even if I don’t like the other side. Several of my views have changed. Do I think I need more protein? Yep! Do I think YOU do? I don’t know. Do I think we need TONS? No. (I want some more because I want to get a lot stronger, but believe me, I don’t think I need a ridiculous amount, just some MORE – for a sedentary person who isn’t looking to build muscle, I wouldn’t worry about protein too much). Do I think overloading on fruit calories to “carb up” is a smart idea? HAHA, NOPE! Do you need sufficient calories? Well yeah! You don’t need to eat more than you use! Do I think vegetables and greens are even MORE important? YES. Do I think fat is important? YES. Do I think cooked food is poison? NO. Do I think you need animal products in small amounts? I don’t know, but for me it is a question of kindess, so you will have to decide for yourself and think ethically. Do I think salt is bad? No. Do I think it should be limited? Yes. Do I think supplements are bad? Not necessarily. Do I think Western medicine is bad? Yes and no…it depends what the issue is!

I am so happy to be shedding this dogmatic thinking and looking at a bigger picture. That being said, there are raw foodists who I deeply admire, love, look up to and respect. Do I think they’d survive a catastrophic event? I’m not sure, but guaranteed they’d feel really fucking sick!

I am currently playing with how I eat, especially since it’s the holidays. I have ideas about how I am going to eat and work out in the next year. I want to get STRONG, and FAST. I know the bonus will be that I will look awesome, but this time that is not my focus (just like my mental health was my focus when I went raw – the bonus was I looked amazing!)

Part of the reason this came up in my mind is that after the raw food community went haywire recently, I just thought “Fuck this!” and started to eat some cooked, simple food. And it didn’t take long for me to feel utterly crappy. I was like, “God, if potatoes make me feel so awful, how would I survive in a shitty situation?!”

Sigh…it’s hard to know what to do! I am deeply grateful for what raw foods have done for me, but as there is a good and bad side to everything, I barely thought about what bad things it could be doing to me, or could do in the future.

I will continue to learn, grow, and maintain my personal ethics without dogmatic thinking or cult personalities influencing me, and I want to maintain a very open mind. I will NEVER claim to know the “true diet of humans” because NO ONE knows, and if someone claims to, they are an egomaniac to some extent. What is the best diet for them is the best diet for them. We have a lot of clues to what is best, but no one KNOWS 100% FOR FACT. Humans and domesticated animals have a lot more weird idiosyncrasies than wildlife. I read a great quote recently by Gabrielle Reece (who I love) – “The problem with other people’s diets is that it’s another person’s diet.” This is true – some people thrive on a particular diet and others will not. This is why I think it is important to keep an open mind and not follow one person blindly. Take what makes sense for you and work around it. Learn from everyone. And go by how you FEEL more than how you look (though that can give clues as to what is working for you, too, of course!)

Please never take what certain people teach as 100% true. Try things for yourself, see how you feel, and if things change, shift your thinking and learn more. Question everything and everyone. Go with your intuition! If something seems weird or wrong, there is a REASON for that! Listen to it!

Life is a very fluid thing, and if you are unable to adapt, how will you thrive? It’s no good to throw out a good message, but mold it to fit your personal lifestyle, your needs, and your beliefs. Good luck!

10 Myths About Raw Food

1. You Can’t Get Sick

Bullshit. While it’s true you are much more unlikely to get colds, flu, and all the other things people routinely get, if you don’t have other aspects of your life in check, you are just as vulnerable as anyone else.

I haven’t had a cold or flu in years EXCEPT for when I was highly stressed last winter and barely sleeping. This led to a month-long cough-of-death, cold sore, and bladder infection, none of which I’d had in years. Anything else resembling a cold was very brief and always followed a short time with cooked foods, and was extremely minor. Do I have any notions that a raw food diet will get rid of my nasty infection? Fuck no. But I do know it has helped in me having FAR, FAR less of them. Over my years of being raw, I have had little stress and lots of sleep. I did have periods of insomnia and I know now that it was underlying anxieties and stress causing it (which led to the aforementioned sickness of January 2013). I have never had a problem sleeping since then.

Eating raw is not ENOUGH to be healthy. You must get enough sleep, be hydrated, move your body, deal with your shit, keep a positive attitude, be around good people – all are very important to your health and ability to stay well.

2. You Are Always Happy and Nice

Nope. You are very likely going to feel euphoric at first, and will be happy a lot more of the time. It will also help you stay more positive. But there is this lame myth that you will just be this happy hippie at all times, and you can feel like a fraud if you’re not. Drop it. I know plenty of people who eat raw who are mean, grumpy, passive aggressive, deal with depression, etc. Of course, those people are not like that all the time, either. We are all HUMANS. WOW, go figure! We have fluctuating moods depending on our own personal circumstances!

Now, you will likely feel good most of the time if nothing crappy or stressful is going on in your life. If you are depressed for NO reason, then you are likely lacking something (but not necessarily!). This happens to me in the winter and I either get on a plane somewhere warm or I get in a freaking tanning bed once in a while.

To become happy “all” of the time, you really have to do a lot of personal work. Raw food was a pathway for me to heal a lot of my emotional turmoil. It is still not completely dealt with. I don’t know if things can be completely dealt with, anyway. Things also come up that will set you back (like my last relationship – massive set-back in my mental health) – so don’t expect raw food to make you this magical, happy person at all times.

Also, stop looking at famous raw foodists this way. They are human, too. Stop having expectations of them to live up to your perfect ideals and start looking at them for health inspiration, not as gods.

3. You won’t get enough protein.

Answer this question – what do you need all this protein for? Are you growing? Are you body-building? Likely the answer is no. I understand the desire for more protein if you are a body-builder – but that tends to be about aesthetics, not health. If you feel like you need more protein, eat a bit more hemp or a lot more greens. If you don’t care about being 100% raw there are other options for you like beans and quinoa. You don’t need as much as you think you do. If you’re wanting to build muscle, then eat more! But don’t obsess over it if you’re just an average person, and choose healthy sources.

4. Cooked Food is Poison.

As much as I like to stick to 100% raw, once in a while I relent, especially in winter. In winter I want soup, usually only when the weather changes to REALLY cold. Once I get used to the cold, I go back to raw. I have zero issues sticking to raw in warmer months. When I do eat these things, and I go back to raw, like I said in point #1, I get a minor “cold” which is a runny nose, basically. Is this food poison? No. It depends what KIND of food you are ingesting. If you are having beans or potatoes or quinoa, you are not going to have a huge issue. You do not HAVE to be 100% raw to be healthy, though you will probably feel phenomenal when you are. Also, don’t feel like a failure if you do eat cooked foods. Just make them plant-based, eat enough (don’t starve OR stuff yourself), keep your fat intake between 10-20% (focus on omega 3s), and make as much of your diet raw as possible.
The more the better.

5. You Need to Eat Less and Sleep Less

Here’s the thing…you need to eat more raw food in order to feel full. Regular foods that people are accustomed to take a long time to digest and stay in the stomach longer. They are more calorie dense, so you get full faster. Your stomach may get full VERY quickly with a small amount of raw food at first – but you need to eat more or you will be ravenous. It digests fast.

That being said, I do NOT agree with eating more than you need to. Stuffing yourself with bananas and coconut sugar and all these other things just to get “more carbs” is ridiculous. The only time you need excess calories is if you are an athlete, and I certainly would not recommend refined, processed foods.

For sleep – sleep as long as you need to. Some nights you might need more than others. Just sleep when you’re tired and wake up when you are ready to – that is how much sleep you need. If you’re relying on stimulating foods or drinks, then you need more sleep.

6. It’s Restrictive

That depends on how you look at it – even though cooked food is not necessarily poison, a lot of “food” out there IS. If I told you that you can’t eat pus, would you be upset? Probably not. You’d be thrilled. So when I say don’t eat dairy, why think that is restrictive? It’s no better for you than pus, and is filled with it anyway.

Think about what you eat most of the time, too. Probably the same things on a regular basis, right? The things you like most. Well, I can say for myself and many others, that your world actually expands when you eat raw – you start trying foods that you probably had never heard of before.

Also, most processed foods are made of the same ingredients – corn, soy, wheat, egg, dairy, sugar.

I actually started to enjoy myself in the kitchen when I went raw, too. I got creative. My idea of cooking was mini-pizza in the toaster oven, or toast with cream cheese. The fanciest I got was potato skins. Guess what they all had? Cheese and starch. What a huge variety.

7. It’s COLD

Actually, most raw food is room temperature. Unless you are keeping food in the fridge, it won’t be cold, and most fruit should be kept on your counter, anyway, so it can stay ripe or get ripe. Some stuff can be warmed, too. I really need to find a good raw soup for winter that I can warm up!

8. It’s Time-Consuming

Not really. If you get into raw and are making all the gourmet meals, YEAH. It’s crazy time-consuming. But if you are eating simply, fruit as a focus, it’s FAST. The most I spend “making” food for myself during the day is 5 minutes for a smoothie or to grind date paste or cut something up. In the evening I spend maybe 20-30 minutes making a huge salad.

I’d say that is much less time than the average person, unless they’re living on microwave meals and sandwiches.

9. It’s the Only Way to Be Healthy

Like I said before, you do not have to be raw to be healthy. You DO need to incorporate a lot of raw foods to be healthy, though. There are a lot of ways to be healthy but DO YOUR RESEARCH. Who is giving you the information? What are their credentials? What are THEIR physical and mental states like? Never follow ANYONE blindly. There is so much conflicting information out there and seriously, I don’t agree with any of it 100%. Some of it I find completely baffling. The goal is to be healthy, not dogmatic or RIGHT. The goal is to prevent yourself from getting cancer and heart disease and other things that will KILL you and take over your life in the meantime – who has time for that?!

I know I feel my best physically AND mentally on raw. Do I know it’s 100% the way to true health forever and ever with no room for error? No! NO ONE DOES, even if they claim to.

What I do know is that the majority of people who really want to be raw and stick to it, at least very high raw, feel better than almost everyone else alive. How many people do you know that feel fantastic almost all the time? I am willing to bet hardly any. Outside of the raw community I can’t think of anyone who feels so great, but I know most people want to.

Raw foodism is something great to aspire to, and it can be intimidating for people. Just take steps. No one says you have to do it overnight. I didn’t.

10. You’ll Get Too Skinny/Too Fat (!?)

If you don’t eat enough, yeah, you will get too skinny. If you have an underlying issue, you might get too skinny. The remedy for that is to eat more. If you still can’t put on weight, then you might have something else going on.

If you are gaining weight on raw, then you are eating too much, despite what many people say. I see this “stuff yourself” mentality in fruit/starch land, and despite what many people say, you cannot just eat until you want to barf and stay skinny unless you are exercising a hell of a lot. I know this because I did gain weight – not a lot, but enough! I have no background of caloric restriction except for a brief time in 2006 and even briefer in 2007. I have eaten to my heart’s content ever since, but last year I was eating a LOT more (stress and also running) and I gained weight. This is when I was having some steamed starches, too. I put on 10 lbs, even though I was running 5k on a regular basis. When I dropped the starches and went back 100% raw with some gourmet and even more fats, all that weight came off. I was satiated sooner and didn’t feel like stuffing in so many starches at the end of the day. I also stopped eating a billion bananas, which I don’t like much anyway.

I highly doubt anyone would get TOO fat on fruit, though, but if you are eating a ridiculous amount of calories, you will, I don’t care what anyone says. But eat as much as you like – don’t FORCE it. If you want to eat 4 bananas instead of 10, that is OKAY! Eat until you are satisfied, not nauseous (which I have done…no thanks).

As an endnote, please never take what one person says as gospel. I do not claim to have all the answers. All I can share is my experience and views, which change depending on new information I might take in. If it does not work for you, keep learning. *I* am also still learning – everyone is, unless they think they know everything, and those are the people who you should be very wary of. NOBODY knows all the answers about perfect diet and nutrition for humans, and even if someone did, our current world state does not allow perfection anyway.

I wish you the best possible health and I will answer all and any questions you have, as best as I can, or at least I can lead you in a good direction. 🙂

And remember – is your goal to be healthy? Or is your goal to be a “raw foodist?” Which is more important?

Crawling Out of the Gloom

I know it can be easy to fall into a slump when the weather gets gloomy, and it’s dark out early, and sometimes shit just happens.

I’ve been in this state a little lately since something rotten happened to me, and it’s  been hard to perk back up from it, especially in this rainy, foggy, cold weather.

Once you’re stuck in that murky place, and you’re not sure where to grasp, or what to do, it’s common to just drown in your own negativity. You know what is good for you, but you just feel so crappy that you don’t care. You don’t feel worthy of self-care. You just want to bundle up with blankets by the fire and eat cake and watch TV. You don’t want to exercise out in the cold. You don’t want to do errands. And you certainly don’t want to go to work.

I have still stuck to my raw food diet in this time, but higher fat foods have crept back in because they feel more comforting – they can really squash down emotions, especially more than fruit which makes you feel so clear and feel everything more intensely. And that can be hard, especially if you’re used to dealing with your feelings by eating (or drinking, smoking, playing video games, etc – anything to get out of your head).

But I know that it’s not good for me, and even though it can bring short term pleasure, eventually it makes me feel worse.

I know what I need to do in order to feel my best. And so do you.

The best thing to do when you’re in a slump is to write down EVERYTHING you can do that will make you feel better. All of it. Write a list of it, and look at it every time you wake up.

And just follow the list. Don’t even THINK about it. Just do what it says. Treat it like your job. Keep the list with you all the time.

If you still have issues getting going, just break those things into tinier steps and follow that. Like, do you want to go for a run but don’t even want to get out of bed? Don’t even think about the run yet. Think about sitting up. Then think about putting on socks. You can do that! And those micro-steps will eventually lead you out the door, if you break it up small enough.

So what are the things that will make me feel the best? I have written a list – and I know I must follow it, because the winter months are the worst here, and I don’t have a big trip to a warm place to look forward to this time, so I have to get through to spring somehow!

Steps to Feel Better:

1. Low-fat raw vegan diet.

This is the most important. Having to many fatty foods in the gut just makes you feel slow, heavy, and I want to feel light and vibrant.

2. Daily exercise.

And really, I mean playing. Fun stuff that makes you move. It’s hard to get excited about going for a run in the rain, but you can have a dance party in the living room, or go to the swimming pool, or have a martial arts lesson.

3. SUN

Or a tanning bed if a vacation is not an option, and you don’t live in a place with year-round warmth and rays. Minimal tanning is a great option for Vitamin D. You can also get an SAD lamp (though that helps with hormones, and does not create vitamin D). Also there are now vegan D3 supplements, so getting those can help too, especially if you don’t want to spend money on tanning.

4. Massage

If you can’t afford it, do mutual massage with your partner or a good friend. Do it as a trade.

5. Sex

I mean, duh. Connecting with your partner in this way is going to make you feel even closer, more loved, and flood you with gorgeous happy chemicals. If you don’t have a partner, give yourself some love.

6. Water and Lots of it

We need to flush our systems! You will get a lot more fluid in your system from eating mostly fruits and vegetables, but considering we live in toxic environments, we need a lot more flushing out!

7. Exquisite Physical Self-Care

Treat yourself beautifully. Treat your skin and your hair and your teeth with utmost care – don’t drown yourself in products – simplicity is good.

8. Belief Questioning

If you are having a hard time, write down everything about what’s going on – be pissed off. And then question those beliefs à la Byron Katie. It works wonders.

9. Gratitude

Even if everything is going shitty, I bet you can find some amazing things in your life to focus on instead.

10. Media Boycott

We get way too caught up in things like Facebook and Youtube and whatnot these days. Take a break from them – spend the time doing things you used to do before the internet took over everyone’s lives.

11. Reading for Pleasure AND Learning

Related to the media boycott – instead of reading what everyone else is doing, read something someone has actually created. Or even better, learn something new.

12. Writing in a Journal + Creative Writing

I think I should have put this higher on the list, though everything on here is important. For me, writing encompasses both journaling AND creative writing, though I can get sucked into the internet and regret wasting my time doing that instead of working on my own stuff. As for journaling – if you are writing, and have nothing to write about – that is a sure sign your life has gotten pretty dull. (Actually, this was key to me realizing my former relationship had made my life boring! Time to get out! Thanks diary!)

13. Specific Goal-Oriented Work, Daily

I ain’t talking about your day job. I am talking about things you want to accomplish. You can do something to get closer to those goals every day. Even if you have tons of goals, you can do SOMETHING every day to reach them, even if it’s something tiny! Tiny things add up, too!

14. Stop Wasting Time

No more Farmville for you. Close your laptop. Go outside. Play with your animal friends. Jump on your partner.

15. Do Fun or Exciting Things Every Day

Even if it’s minor. You could die in 5 minutes – or less. Have fun as much as possible. I rode a PlasmaCar the other day, down a long wheelchair ramp. Twice. It made my whole day.

16. Pay Off Debts

Agh, this is huge. Money is the most annoying thing people worry about. There are ways to get out of debt – even if it’s huge amounts, there are probably a lot of creative ways you can get out of it. I’m lucky I don’t have a huge amount, but it still weighs me down, even though I don’t think about it a lot – it’s a nagging anvil on my carefree heart.

17. Be Creative Every Day

In some way. There are ways to put a flourish on anything.

18. Clean Environment/Minimalism

Your environment is a reflection of your mindstate. Too messy = chaotic mind. Clean = calm mind. Spotless at every single moment = obsessive mind. You get the picture.

19. Time With Animals

Do I need to explain? Having a sweet animal friend helps keep you calm, gives you unconditional love, and gives you a purpose and focus for YOUR love, too.

20. Sleep – Early Nights (Usually)

As much as I love staying up late, I know it’s not the best for me. Going to bed between 10 and midnight is a really good idea – even earlier if you can. A lot of things I enjoy happen late at night, though, so I think as long as I go to bed early as a usual, I can stay out later sometimes – as long as I still get enough sleep. How do you know it’s enough? You wake up without any alarms, and you are ready to sit up and stretch. If you want to curl up into a ball again, you need more! (unless you’re just cold and want to stay cozy! I get it!)

21. B12 Test/Injections

This is one I gotta check out – it’s been a while since I had my levels checked. I have been taking a sublingual for a long time and want to see if it’s making any difference. If not, stab away! This is one nutrient that is hard for EVERYONE to get, not just vegans and vegetarians. It’s an extremely complicated vitamin.

22. See Friends More Often

I can tend to hide away and get too introspective – even if I don’t feel like going to see someone, I never regret going. Or rarely!

23. But Have Alone Time More Often, Too

If I’m around people TOO much, then I don’t have enough time to work on my own stuff. A lot of what I do takes solitude. Also, for other people, alone time is important to BE introspective. So many people hate being alone – why? You must really not like yourself. Why not? Spend some time alone and figure it out, then fix it!

24. Written Goals/Vision Board/Book

Writing shit down is so important. There are so many times I remember thinking “Nah, I don’t need to do that, I already know what I want to accomplish” – but until I actually wrote it down, it didn’t really happen. Having a beautiful visual is great, too! I did some awesome boards on Pinterest – but be careful with that site, it can become a distraction.

25. Martial Arts + Hoopdance

For me, these things are fun and at least one is practical. Both boost confidence, especially martial arts. I highly recommend trying a martial arts class – they all generally let you do the first lesson for free – if you want recommendations for the best kinds, shoot me a message. As for hoopdance, it’s fun, challenging, creative, beautiful, and great for your body.

26. Plants and Nature

Another little thing that can help your mood is to have plants around, and lots of them – ESPECIALLY if you live in the city. Getting out in nature is going to be even better – do that as much as possible – the more time spent outside (in nature) the better. If you live in Cold Ass Frozen City, then get some tropical indoor plants and pretend you’re somewhere else by sitting by the heater. But still…get some awesome thermals and a parka and epic boots and go out in the snowy forest if you have to – it’s worth it.

~

Hopefully some of these tips are helpful to you – I’m sure your own list will be somewhat different, however, there are a lot of things on this list that are useful to everyone, so please incorporate them, and feel happy 🙂

Love and Health Trump Everything

It doesn’t matter what happens to you if you’re healthy.

If you’re healthy then you can do anything. You can think clearly. You can do any sort of work. You can solve problems more easily. You won’t put up with as much bullshit (if any).

When things get taken away from you, at least you will have your health. If you lose something, have things stolen, get fired – let yourself be mad for a short time and then move on. Honour your anger. But then focus on what you do have. If you are healthy and have love, you’re doing better than most people on earth.

Health and love are the most important things in life – if you have both, you are a lucky, lucky human being. You can go without a lot of things, but if you lack either of those, you are not going to be experiencing life as it should be experienced.

Health is not arbitrary. It’s not just “feeling good.” You could feel good for 20 years and be growing a tumour in your gut, or have your bones deteriorating – things don’t just happen in a day – they are based on how you live your life and what you put in your mouth.

Health also depends on how you THINK, how you talk to yourself, and how you treat yourself and others. When you eat a clean diet, you will automatically become more compassionate to yourself and fellow human beings (and animals), and you will have more love in your life – it happens. You become magnetic – you start to be more loving, calm, and patient. You see beauty everywhere. Even when someone is being a jerk, you can focus on the good aspects of that person (eventually) instead of writing them off completely.

But don’t fool yourself – just because you are slim, fit, and feel good, it doesn’t mean you are HEALTHY. You are only as healthy as your weakest link.

So focus on health and love – when you have them, everything else can fall apart and you will be still be way better off than most. You can rebuild. You can always get new “things.” You can always find more work. You can then see new pathways and possibilities, often better than what exited your life in the first place.

You are HOW You Eat – Be Like Fruit!

When you eat fruit you become sweet.

You become light and juicy, full of life and lusciousness. You have a natural compassion. The more fruit you eat, the more ripe YOU become. You ripen into who you really are.

Raw food takes all your bullshit away. It strips you of your angst.  It might put you into turmoil at first; it forces you to face your crap, it makes you deal with all the nasty junk, it makes you say “fuck no, I don’t want this in my life.” It brings you joy and REALNESS. You cannot be fake on a diet of fruit, it is impossible.

When you eat fruit you want to spread seeds – you can do this by just BEING.

You can just sit there and glow and people will look at you with wonder and want to know what you’re doing, and then you can tell them your “secret.” You can plant that seed in them. Even if they don’t understand at first, or if they don’t follow your example, at least they KNOW – they may remember in the future, when they are ready – that fruity seed is there, ready to grow.

Most people feel like crap all the time, and it’s because they eat crap. If you want to feel like a dry, brown potato, by all means, eat chips. If you want to feel like an angry, paranoid, selfish, fearful person, by all means, eat the flesh of a terrified animal. If you want to feel fat, gooey, heavy, and nauseous, by all means, eat all that cake!

But it’s not going to do anything for you. And it’s not going to do anything to help the world, or inspire your friends, or invoke health, or spark the mad fire inside you, which can be repressed and doused by all the crap you’re pouring on top of it. Let it OUT. Let your issues surface and deal with them so you can LIVE. It’s scary, but NOT LIVING YOUR LIFE is more terrifying – isn’t it?