I'm Eve, and I'm Suffering from Cooked Food Addictions

I know it's been a week since my last post. I been feeling very melancholy this week, especially towards technology. Sometimes I wish I lived long ago before TVs, computers, phones, etc. I'm sure life was harder, physically, but every once in awhile I wish I could go there. I also wish it was warm out, I would love to take a walk in the woods and relax. In this temperature, I would probably get hypothermia if I tried taking a walk in the woods. So instead, I've been reading, playing Wii with my daughter, and packing. Just a few more weeks until Spring; I can't wait!

I just finished a book titled I'm Eve by Chris Costner Sizemore and Elen Sain Pittilo. It was an eye opening memoir about a woman, named Chris, struggling through life with multiple personalities. As a child she doesn't realize that she has a personality disorder, but only that another child comes and does bad things for her, or watches things she doesn't want to see. As an adult, Chris is diagnosed, and tries to eliminate the other personalities and figure out which is the real her. She can hear herself speaking, watch what her body is doing, but she is not doing it. She feels trapped inside a body that is inhabited by other people, some she doesn't even like. I think many of us can relate in some way. We may not have many personalities, but we often struggle through life trying to find ourselves. Sometimes, when we have it all figured out, we find ourselves lost once again. For many, it's a never ending battle.

This also relates a bit to raw food and it's nemesis, cooked food addictions. Or any kind of food addictions. When dealing with these kinds of addictions it seems that no matter what you tell yourself, your body does something different. Those potato chips on the dining room table, already opened and ready to be devoured? You know your not interested, you try not to pay much attention to them at all. Next thing you know, your chewing on something salty and crunchy. This tastes good! Then you realize what you have done, and you're mad at yourself. You told yourself you didn't want them, so why did you eat them? Before you know it, another crunch! Why are you doing this to yourself? What's making you do this? Why can't you just stop and move on with your life like all those other, more famous raw foodists? Sometimes you just feel like you have no control.

No one ever told Chris that she was doing it to herself, was causing herself to suffer from multiple personalities. All those years, until she was in her late 40s at least, she thought that the personalities where doing this to her. Her cousin, Elen, told her that she was doing this to herself, that no one, or no thing was doing this to her. When she realized that she was causing her own misery, she finally had the power to stop it.

Ending our addictions to unhealthy food is a challenge, and it's something that we have to do completely on our own. Sure, we can get support from others, but the real effort has to come from ourselves. No one can help us with that, because only we have the power. We are doing this to ourselves, no outsider is feeding us those potato chips. We have to find the strength within ourselves to defend us from...ourselves.


The Winner is...

Anastazia! Anastazia is a beautiful woman that I know through Rawfu who also happens to be a homeschool mom like me! Her and her daughter will be enjoying the book Food Additives: A Shoppers Guide To What's Safe and What's Not! by Christine Hoza Farlow, D.C. and hopefully learning a thing or two about food additives! This is seriously a great resource that everyone should have!

I wanted to send it to everyone, I really did. I honestly believe that the knowledge in this book should be shared and I hope that those who did not win will take the time to check it out on Amazon.com. Thank you to everyone who left a comment! It showed me that this is an important topic that many people are concerned about. When we learn what is really in our food we become angry, scared, and confused. Angry that someone would allow us to eat something like this. Scared because we don't know the long term repercussions for ourselves and our children. We are also scared because many of us just don't know what to do. I mentioned all of this to a friend today and she said that she didn't want to feed this to her children, but what else can she feed them? She felt like she had no choice and just gave up the fight.

We are confused as well. Confused because we assumed the FDA and the government had our backs. We assumed that the food in the cafeterias of our children's schools were good for them. Now we don't know where to turn, we don't know who to trust with our family's health. This is why so many people just give up.

This is one of the many reasons I turned to raw food. Raw food is the consumption of vegetables, fruits, nuts and seeds in their living, uncooked, unpasteurized state. When you eat raw foods you are only eating the food in its natural form, so there would never be any ingestion of harmful additives. The transition to a vegan, raw food diet and lifestyle at any time in a persons life may help to avoid many of the harmful effects of food additives, artificial sweeteners, pesticides, herbicides, and herbicides, carcinogens, etc.
Again, thank you for all the wonderful comments! Congratulations to Anastazia!


What's In Our Food? Food Additives and Giveaway

I've been eating all raw lately, but that obviously wasn't always the case. Not even all raw will completely protect you for those "harmfuls" that are out there. Did you know that those little labels on our fresh produce tell you a lot more than what code to push in at the cash register? Here's what I found out:

~If there are only 4 digits in the number, then it is conventionally grown

~If there are 5 digits in the number, and the first number is 8 then it is genetically modified

~If there are 5 digits in the number, and the first number is 9, then it is organic

That's such great information! I wish I had that info years ago. Being an educated consumer is our first step to taking charge of our health.

Many of us are still transitioning, or just looking into the health benefits of raw, so we are still eating prepackaged foods. My first weapon against food additives is that if the list of ingredients seems too long, then I don't buy it.
My second weapon of defense is a book titled Food Additives: A Shoppers Guide To What's Safe and What's Not! by Christine Hoza Farlow, D.C. It's a small book, so it fits in your pocket book easily. I bought mine at my local natural food store just last night, but you can get it on Amazon for $7.95. It is a wonderful resource that I am so happy to have! I honestly want to buy one for everyone that I know.

So yes, I do buy some prepacked foods because my daughter is not 100% raw. She still eats stuff like Cheerios, Uncle Ben's rice, rice milk, etc. So I have been wondering, what's so bad with Uncle Ben's wild rice? Or whatever she happens to be eating for lunch that day.

The ingredient list for Uncle Ben's Wild Rice Original Recipe:

Long grain parboiled rice enriched with iron, thiamin, and folate; whole grain wild rice; vegetables; hydrolyzed corn/soy/wheat protein; sugar; autolyzed yeast extract; salt; spices; smoked yeast; sunflower oil; natural flavors; tumeric

Most of these ingredients I pretty much understand, but just for the purposes of this experiment I looked up a few things. The first one was autolyzed yeast extract. According to the book, autolyzed yeast extract says "see MSG". So I looked up MSG, and this is what it said;

"causes obesity, addictive, makes you eat more, may cause diabetes, migraines, headaches, itching, nausea, brain, nervous system, reproductive disorders, high blood pressure, Autism, ADHD, Alzheimer's, retina damage, blindness; pregnant, lactating mothers, infants, small children should avoid; allergic reactions common; generally produced using GMO bacteria; May be hidden in infant formula, baby food, low fat and no fat milk, candy, chewing gum, drinks, kosher food, protein bars, protein powder, protein drinks recommended for seniors, most processed foods, wine, waxes applied to fresh fruits and vegetables, over the counter medications, especially children's, binders and fillers for nutritional supplement's, prescription and non prescription drugs, IV fluids given in hospitals, chicken pox vaccine, live virus vaccines, nasal spray flu vaccine, used in pesticides, fungicides, and fertilizers; being sprayed on growing fruits and vegetables as a growth enhancer (AuxiGro); proposed for use on organic crops."

Okay, so I always knew that MSG was bad, but I didn't realise how much stuff is was in! Not only is it in Uncle Ben's rice but I can't believe that it was proposed to be used on organic crops!

So I looked up the hydrolyzed corn/soy/wheat protein; "may cause brain and nervous system damage in infants; high salt content; contains free glutamates; MSG; may be genetically modified." So I looked up free glutamates; "may cause brain damage, especially in children".

So that was enough to make me not buy the rice anymore. Should I go on to another food? I shall. As a snack, I bought her Pete's Tofu2Go, Thai Tango flavor. Made with organic tofu and no preservatives. Sounds good to me.

The tofu itself contains calcium sulfate, which isn't that bad, when you compare it to MSG. The book says, "may constipate; can kill rodents". I'm not really sure what "can kill rodents" means in relation to humans, but I know it can't be good, and constipation is never good.

But what really concerned me was the sauce packet, used for dipping the tofu. It tastes wonderful, but it has xanthan gum, which "may cause gastrointestinal distress; extracted from Xanthomonas campestris by solvent extraction which may leave a toxic residue; may contain allowable amounts of lead, arsenic, and heavy metals; may be GMO". So if the amounts of metals are "allowable", how much do you need to eat of this product, and other products with xantham gum before it becomes unallowable???

So what can we do? A raw food diet is the most effective way to reduce and almost completely wipe out these foods from our lives. If you are not at that point, or you have children, like mine, who are not 100% raw, then my best advice is pay attention. Read the labels and become familiar with these additives so that you know what to look for. Decide where you will draw the line. For example, I may buy the Pete's Tofu2Go again, but I won't allow my daughter to use the sauce packet (she loves it just the same without the sauce). When I told her about the additives, she was completely interested in wiping these out of her diet as well. It's a great educational tool.
We don't have a lot of processed foods in our house to experiment with, but I would love to take this book to a friend's house, or someone else's and go through their cabinets! Or I could even go to the super market and look at the stuff I used to eat. I urge you to pick up this book. I only touched the surface of the information it contains.

In fact, I have an idea. So many people are doing giveaways lately, and I did say I wanted to buy this book for everyone I know. I can't get one for everyone, but I can get one for one person. So, everyone that wants a copy, just comment below and say so, and I will pull a name from a bowl and send you a copy. I would love to send you a copy! Today is Valentine's Day, and I love you ALL, so this will be my gift to you. I will wait about 5 days; on Feb. 18th at 11:59pm, I will pull a name and the winner will win the book Food Additives: A Shoppers Guide To What's Safe and What's Not! by Christine Hoza Farlow, D.C. Good Luck!

In the meantime, if you have an ingredient in your food that you really want to know about, just send me an email and I can look it up for you.

Happy Valentine's Day!


Fun Snack Recipes and Veggie Dip!

I have been really enjoying my raw food lifestyle the last few days! I just feel so free from cooking, making meals, planning meals, etc. This morning I woke up, and looking at the smorgasbord of fruit on our stove top, I decided to eat a tomato for breakfast. I added some dulse flakes and it was heaven. About an hour and a half later I made a giant green smoothie. I drank 85 oz of green smoothie and it lasted me all the way until dinner. I did sneak in a peach half way just for fun. Now, I am eating some pineapple, and I will retire with a big, giant salad.

I am always trying to mix up my salads, and in this season it's not so easy. So now I am mixing up my salad dressing. Some days I make a vinaigrette, some days I just use lemon. Rory made a really great dressing/veggie dip that I have been enjoying this week. It has a Mexican flavor to it, but what I really like is that it reminds me of something I used to love. It took me a really long time to remember what it reminds me of, but I finally figured it out. When I was just a vegetarian, way back, I used to make a salad and add eggs and cheese. This dressing gave my salad that exact texture and flavor, and it was fantastic!

Here's the recipe~

2 C. soaked sunflower seeds
1/2 C. of water
Juice of 1 lemon
approx 3 tbsps. of apple cider vinegar
2 dates (pitted)
1+1/2 to 2 tsp. salt

Blend thoroughly and toss in the following seasonings~

1+1/2 tsp. onion powder
1+1/2 tsp. garlic powder
1/2-3/4 tsp. of ground black-pepper
1+1/2 Tbsp. of oregano
1+1/2 tsp. of ground coriander
1/8th to 1/2 tsp. of chipotle powder (it all depends on how spicy ya like it!)
1/4 tsp. of cumin


Rory and I were about to watch a movie last night and I was complaining that I wanted some sort of snacky, junk food thing. I wanted it to be raw, but crunchy and salty like chips. I was so demanding, since I also wanted it to be nut free, and quick, no dehydrator. Haha! So I really put Rory to the test and he came through for me! He made me a delicious platter with carrots and cauliflower to dip into the same sunflower seed veggie dip. He also made this really great spicy/salty carrot chip thing and "to live for" salty cauliflower. He cut up some sweet watermelon and made a tropical blend green smoothie because, when someone usually has salty chips, they then crave something sweet! I enjoyed the food so much I could barely concentrate on the movie! He called the yummy cauliflower stuff Cheezy Cauliflower Nuggets and here is the recipe ~

1/2 a head of cauliflower broken into small florets and little pieces
1 tsp. of hemp oil
1 tsp. pulverized salt
1 Tbsp. of nutritional yeast


Here is the recipe for the carrot chips~

2 Lg carrots - washed thoroughly and cut into long diagonal slices to resemble a chip

Put them in a bowl and toss with the following~

A tsp. or so of hemp oil to get the flavorings to adhere
1 tsp. of mineral salt ground into a fine powder for even coating
1 Tbsp. of chili-powder
1 Tbsp. of nutritional yeast flakes

I pretty much ripped these recipes straight from his site if you want to check out the source.

I was just telling Rory last night what my dream kitchen would have in it. You know those refrigerated buffet tables that you see in some restaurants and cafeterias? They hold different fruits and veggies, and keep them cool at the same time. I would love that! I would wake up in the morning and prepare all sorts off fruits and veggies and place them on the buffet. Then no one will be hungry or have cravings for cooked food. They could always be picking something nutritious off the buffet and eat whenever they need to! I think that would be great for children. Now where can I get myself a refrigerated buffet? haha

My daughter wants to make another raw food video, but this time on a raw food "buckwheat groat popcorn". Hopefully I can post that for you soon!


Kelp Noodles Short Review and Recipe

I know it's been a week since I posted last, but to be honest, I've been so busy! This week Rory and I pretty much spent all of our free time going through our old stuff and either re-purposing them, or sending them to a thrift store. I unloaded boxes and boxes of really great books to a local nursing home, who will sell them at their next charity event. I am so glad to see them go to a good cause. My daughter just found out that we cannot take our pet mouse with us, and she seems devastated about it. I feel bad, but so many places have a no pet policy. In fact, the place we live in now has a no pet policy, but we were able to use puppy dog eyes and keep our mouse here. I won't have so much luck next time.

So anyway, I finally made something with the Sea Tangle Kelp Noodles that were sitting in my refrigerator for a few months. These noodles are pretty much made with kelp and sodium alginate, which is sodium from brown seaweed. these noodles are very easy to prepare, just take them out of the bag and give them a quick rinse! That's my kind of noodle!

I was pleasantly surprised about their taste and texture. I just kinda invented the recipe on the spot.

1 bag Sea Tangle Kelp Noodles
juice of 1/2 lemon
2 Tbsp basil
1 tsp garlic powder
2 Tbsp onion
1 large kale leaf
1 carrot
2 tomatoes
2 Tbsp hemp oil
salt and pepper

Rinse the bag of noodles and place them in a bowl. Slice the kale leaf very thin and then massage it thoroughly to make it soft. Use a veggie peeler to peel the carrot, then dice it with a knife. Dice the tomatoes and onion. Add everything into a bowl and toss.

The recipe was great! The noodles themselves had no flavor, but easily picked up the flavor of the recipe. I did have to add a lot of salt, and I don't usually add salt to anything. It was as if the longer the salt was on the noodles, the less I tasted it. The noodles had a crunch to them, that I actually heard more than I felt. I barely felt any crunch in my teeth at all, but heard the sound when I chewed. It was also very filling, I couldn't finish my plate.

There is no real nutritional value to the noodles, except iodine. They're fat free, gluten free, low carb, and low calories. They are healthier than regular noodles, and a great way to transition to zucchini noodles. Also, I really think that children will enjoy these.

Overall, I definitely enjoyed the noodles, and I would buy them again. You can purchase them in bulk from their website, and I have found them in some Whole Foods and a few local natural food stores. They seem to last awhile in the fridge (we had them since Dec.).