Friday, November 2, 2007

The Evolution Includes Breakfast...

I am back and energized this morning, I think with my new diet I’m able to ‘do morning’ way better than usual. I’m totally the kind of person who hates getting up before noon, even though I’m usually at my office around 8:40am during the week. Every morning I go through the usual struggle of dragging myself out of our comfy bed, especially while Luke and Star are so perfectly cuddled together…without me! They look all warm and snugly while they basically take over the warm spot that was once mine. Unlike most women, I can get ready for work in an instant…like 15-20 minutes. For the sake of all my friends out there…I have to admit that HAS NOT always been the case (so shut it) and it is not always the case when I go out …but usually (since A. I never wear make-up like foundation and B. I don’t have to do much to my hair because I have dreads (which I absolutely love and changed my life)) it doesn’t take very long at all.

My biggest problem habit that I picked up in high school out of my disdain for morning activities was not eating breakfast. Seriously folks, I can go hours without eating. This is not a good thing, and definitely not a weight loss method. Basically not eating has caused my body to store fat. After 10 years of not eating breakfast I am on morning 2 of ‘EAT SOMETHING STUPID YOU’RE SLOWING DOWN YOUR ALREADY SLOW METABOLISM’. Yes, I know many of you have been saying this for years. Both my husband and best friend Erika have been badgering me for years about this problem and they both have been severely disturbed by my daytime eating habits, or lack there of. I am now ready to make that change because I know my health isn’t at the optimal capacity with me doing things like that to my body. Just because I don’t feel hungry doesn’t mean my body doesn’t want its fuel for the daytime. I am obviously not perfect and this is something I’m still struggling with because I truly don’t get hungry until around 5 when I get home. I am basically forcing myself to eat fruits these first few days and then I will add in natural granola, homemade muesli and nuts into the daytime equation. All these things are easy to store and carry with me to the office. I also am on the search for the perfect power juicer to add yummy veggie and fruit juices to my mornings as well. If anyone knows of any awesome juicers to suggest let me know. I plan on deciding on one in the next two weeks.

This is all the yummy food I ate yesterday, organic and prepared in various raw ways:
Green-Leaf Lettuce
Flax Seed
Red Onion
Garbanzo Beans

I promise you people I’ve never felt more connected to the earth, animals, nature and my true self. To me nothing is better than fresh fruit and vegetables. This has not always been the case; I used to be a big candy person and junk food vegetarian. In the past year we have completely eliminated all refined and unlabeled sugar (and now sugar in general) and you know what…I don’t miss it for one second. If I want sugar I am happy to chow down on some raisins or a beautiful mango and that satisfies me way better than those pesky little Sour Patch kids I used to crave. I call dried fruit ‘nature’s candy’ and I much prefer it. I think when people look at going vegan and going raw as well, as GIVING SOMETHING UP. I think of it in the opposite way…GAINING SOMETHING BETTER. If you consider things like, “what nutritional value does this fried potato or artificially flavored candy add to my body?” it is so much easier to feel perfectly satisfied with only consuming foods that are completely natural and come from the earth with no blood, guts or gore.

There are tons of unhealthy vegan friendly foods out there, like all those products with isolated soy proteins (mock meats, soy sour creams, cheeses and ice creams). These things aren’t ALL bad with moderation, but I think they should be used as transitional foods rather than a diet’s staple ingredients. The best way to take in soy is in its most natural form like edamame. Tofu and tempeh aren’t bad because they aren’t processed the same way as those other isolated soy products. I have given up tofu and tempeh for now, though I may introduce them back into my diet eventually as they are not harmful to your health, but not really a part of the raw diet I’m going for right now while getting in maximum form for my child bearing/rearing years.

Our old vegan Saturday lunch-fast (I'm over "brunch" and it can't truly be considered breakfast when we didn't wake up until 1pm) complete with tofu scramble w/ veggies and nutritional yeast, soy sausage, sauteed potatoes, fruit, and multi grain toast w/ Earth Balance spread...I will never touch MOST of this stuff again, especially in this was totally vegan 100%, but not what I'd call healthy and definitely not raw...I won't say it's bad like once every two months or whatever...just not for me, anymore! I love regular vegan cooking so don't read me wrong...I plan on feeding my children some cooked foods as long as there are no preservatives, artificial flavors/colorings, pesticides, etc....

Most all of us have been eating artificial flavorings and ‘natural flavorings’ that aren’t really natural at all, since we were children, starting with the breakfast cereals and the 'mac and cheese' and all of these unwholesome processed foods. As an adult I can’t consciously continue to put these things in my body when I know for a fact that they are unhealthy and unnatural. Our house is unhealthy packaged food free and no microwaveable crap either (we are highly against using microwaves as well), no more random words we can’t pronounce from unknown sources going into our bodies. Same thing goes for meat (as in animal flesh), yes I know most people have been consuming bacon and eggs since they were toddlers but these are things that hinder your body’s ability to prosper. I keep forgetting to mention the perils of of GMO foods (genetically modified foods)...this is another big problem facing all of us vegan and non vegan alike. Most fruits and vegetables (ESPECIALLY CORN AND SOY) are genetically modified now, so unless you are buying organic you never really know what exactly is in your food or what your food has been bred with because manufactures/farmers aren't required to label it. 'They' have mixed tomato and fish DNA to produce a more sustainable tomato crop for one example. This is a very scary practice and it's even scarier that this kind of practice will no doubt be extended to humans (and already has been to some extent).

A brief overview of what Genetic Modification from Wiki (btw-in my opinion wiki is not a great source for MOST things you want to be able to back up factually, but it does the job explaining this in a simple and concise manner!)

" A genetically modified organism (GMO) is an organism whose genetic material has been altered using the genetic engineering techniques generally known as recombinant DNA technology. With recombinant DNA technology, DNA molecules from different sources are combined in vitro into one molecule to create a new gene. This modified DNA is then transferred into an organism causing the expression of modified or novel traits. The product is also known as an Genetically Engineered Organism or GEO.
The term "GMO" has historically been defined as organisms whose genetic makeup has been altered by conventional cross breeding or by "mutagenesis" breeding, as these methods predate the discovery of the recombinant DNA techniques. However, this term is now interchangeable with Genetically Engineered Organism."

Yesterday there was this article in USA Today about the cancer-fat link. The USA Today doesn’t have a vegan agenda people, I know I do…but they don’t. They won’t even take a vegan/vegetarian stance for that matter. This is basically a gloss over article which I do not approve of, but I know this is the kind of article that everyday people read. In a way it’s ‘good’ (I use this term loosely as well) because at least part of the story is getting out, in other ways it’s bad because the subject is glossed over and the ‘eat vegan’ stance is completely eliminated. There are studies and trials that PROVE that eating meat is unhealthy, but yet for some reason people still consume it. The usual answer we receive is, “IT TASTES GOOD”! When I hear that answer I immediately think of a Neanderthal on one of the Discovery Channel shows. When I hear the answer “IT’S NATURAL TO EAT MEAT”, it’s a whole different vision…but I’ll save that for another time. It’s unhealthy on such a large scale because people are dying everyday of cancer and heart disease largely due to consumption of animals and their by-products. This article is nothing profound to me; I’ve seen many and way more in-depth articles about the correlation of animal products and cancer. It was posted yesterday so it is timely for my forum today….

Put down the bacon! Report emphasizes cancer-fat links

Did reading/skimming the article have any affect on your ideas/thoughts? Does factual evidence change anything for those of you who consume an animal based diet?

This chart is from the article…..

The American Institute for Cancer Research and the World Cancer Research Fund recommend:
• Maintaining a healthy body mass index of 18.5 to 24.9.
• Limiting consumption of red meat to no more than 18 ounces (cooked) a week.
• Eliminating processed meats such as bacon, ham, sausage and lunchmeat.
• Eating five servings or more of fruit and vegetables a day.
• Limiting consumption of alcohol to no more than two drinks a day for men and one for women.
• Exercising at least 30 minutes a day.
• Limiting consumption of salt.
• Limiting processed foods high in added sugar

Of course I ONLY ADVOCATE 100% VEGANISM, to me cutting down is a white-wash and will ultimately make no difference for animals or your health. This chart highlights “eating five serving or more of fruit and vegetables a day”, though it should read “Eat a plant-based diet”, plain and simple. Every site you read about cancer prevention and maintenance tells you to eat an abundance of fruit and vegetables. Instead of waiting until you’re already sick it’s best to be proactive and eliminate the risk as best as you can.
(I don’t advocate all the tips on this page; it is just a tool to show you how cancer prevention always pushes the fruit and veggie tip.)

Don’t think that it’s only meat/flesh that carries these deadly carcinogens, processed foods, preservatives and pesticides are also very dangerous and must be eliminated. Organic fruits and veggies make a lot of difference. I know this is a lot of information and a lot of ideas that may be foreign to you, but seriously there is a plethora of studies, statistics and information out there for you to discover on your own. Choose what sources you trust and scout out the information, you don’t have to take my word for it…I didn’t just take anyone else’s.

A great resource that I find to be credible is the Physicians Committee for Responsible Medicine. They are a great point of reference and a jumping off place.

No comments: