I have some new recipes to share, but I would first like to share some newfound motivation and knowledge. Tyler and I recently watched two documentaries, Fat Sick and Nearly Dead and Food Matters. Really they didn’t give any life-changing newfound knowledge, but reminded us of some important things and certainly gave us motivation to eat even better!
The first, Fat, Sick and Nearly Dead was about a guy from Australia who was overweight and suffered from a debilitating autoimmune disorder the doctors were unable to cure. He was on a ton of daily meds, including high dosage Prednisone. He decided to do something radical and “reboot”. For 60 days, he ‘fasted’; only drinking juice he made himself from fruits and vegetables. He lost a ton of weight, and his disease was cured. He traveled America during this fast, and met a truck driver whom he inspired to do the juice fast as well. This man had the same disease and was morbidly obese. He lost over 200 pounds, and also cured his disease. I’ve heard of juicing before, did some research and we made our own juices for a while. I am happy that we watched this, because today I am going grocery shopping and am stocking up on juicing ingredients once again! Now, these guys were radical, and it was probably necessary in their situation. But the moral of the story is to eat fresh food. That really shouldn’t be too radical, even though the sad truth is that it is to a lot of people.
So why juicing? Well, I am no expert, but one of the main reasons why is because you get more fruits and veggies in. You can get a lot of produce into one glass of juice. Also, as the next documentary discusses, it is important that a high amount of this produce be consumed raw. If you’re like me, this is tricky. I love salads, but am not a huge fan of raw carrots, celery, broccoli etc. When you juice, not only do you consume the produce in raw form, but the juicing process helps your body absorb more of the nutrients. And there are so many different things you can do with juicing! Some quick examples/how to’s:
A juicer probably works best, but I use my blender. For now, this works just fine.
I use a lot of frozen veggies and fruit. This makes a cold juice, and they contain more of the original nutrients that are often lost in the shipping of fresh produce.
Be creative- check out this guy’s site or the various other’s for recipes, but put whatever you like in there! I typically begin with a banana and some leafy greens, especially kale and spinach. Then add some liquid- water or green tea. Add whatever fruits you want; berries work great, apples, oranges, mangoes, peaches… the list is endless! My list of things to try out is carrots, avocadoes, and superfoods that I wouldn’t normally eat. And if you are looking for something heartier, maybe for breakfast add some granola or oats! For a treat, add some raw cocoa. The key is to add lots of veggies, then fruit to make it taste delicious. And believe me, yummy it is.
Food Mattters was wonderful. Again, the moral of the story was to eat natural foods. There were several important topics covered. One was the importance of raw food. Like mentioned before, I prefer cooked food (exception: sushi!). But, your gut has a hard time with some of these cooked foods, not to mention they lose lots of the nutrients even when lightly steamed. I already typically eat a salad for/with lunch. My goal is to add a juice at least in the morning, and preferably one with dinner as well. The guy in the movie says each meal should be at least 55% raw.
The bulk of the movie emphasizes our ‘health’ care system. Now, this is something I have strong opinions about, and will attempt to share a few key points without going overboard here (you should watch the movie for that!). First and foremost, our ‘health’ care system is really a disease management system. As a disclaimer, I have to say that there are some great achievements we have made in medicine, and I am by no means against it all. If I get in a car accident, please take me to the ER! But, did you know that doctors learn very little if anything in medical school about nutrition? And what they do learn is rarely used in practice. Sure, they may recommend eat more of this and less of that, but they then prescribe you a medicine to help you out. So the message is that you need the drug, regardless of your lifestyle. “A pill for the ill”. But have you ever considered the body’s amazing ability to heal itself? Provide it with nourishment, and it will heal itself. The movie gives some great examples of this, especially dealing with cancer and including intensive vitamin therapy. So, to make a long story short, we have spent billions upon billions of dollars on medical research. And there hasn’t been a whole lot of progress. Maybe we’ve developed a few drugs to deal with some symptoms, but the underlying problems are still there. And those drugs have likely caused a whole new set of problems from the side effects.
A final word. I truly believe in the miracle of nourishing the body with quality vitamins and nutrients, especially by consuming real, good food. Call me crazy, but I really do believe it is the answer to most chronic diseases. Please watch the documentaries (they are on Netflix!) if you are at all interested in learning more. But, say it is a lot of hype. Say these people, myself included, are a little crazy. At the very least, I can promise that real food and vitamins and minerals aren’t going to cause any adverse side effects. They aren’t going to harm you. So why not give it a try? We jump at the chance of trying out a pill, one that has documented side effects. Just remember, you really are what you eat. I really enjoy eating. I believe that enjoying food comes second to the primary purpose of nourishing your body. If you do it right, they come hand in hand- nourishing your body and enjoying every bite.