September 18

When to Feed Baby the First Foods

Filed under Guest Writers by Frederic Patenaude

Guest Writer:

Karen Ranzi, Author, Lecturer, Raw Food Consultant, Raw Vegan Chef, Speech

When to Feed Baby the First Foods

The type of food given to baby is dependent on the age of weaning. All babies require mother’s milk for at least the first year of life to create the strong immunity and bonding necessary for baby’s physical, mental, emotional and spiritual development. The fat and protein in mother’s milk is sufficient for baby’s growth well into the second year. I encourage you to nurse as long as possible. Humans are the latest to mature of all mammals therefore our young require the longest nursing periods. I recommend a minimum of two years. If a mother is unable to nurse for at least the first year of baby’s life, then alternatives could be a wet nurse or milk bank. A last alternative could be raw (unpasteurized) goat milk. The combination of half raw goat milk and half celery/carrot juice has been done successfully for those who were unable to nurse and unable to obtain milk from a human mother. We must remember that human mother’s milk will always be best for the human baby.

Toward the end of the first year, and no sooner, if baby is equipped with teeth to chew, then bite-sized pieces of fresh, ripe, organic fruits can be given one at a time. Fruit is best as the first food because it digests easily in a young digestive system, moving quickly from the stomach into the intestines. It’s important to observe any reaction, as some babies are not ready to eat until well into their second year of life.

As soon as baby is accustomed to digesting a variety of fresh fruits given individually for chewing, begin to introduce green leafy vegetables in delicious green smoothies to provide additional minerals. It is best to start with the milder greens such as Romaine lettuce or spinach.

The first foods should not be blended. They should be bite-size pieces of whole ripe fruit. From the very beginning, mother should sit and chew slowly along with baby, as digestion begins in the mouth. We will be showing our children it’s just as important how we eat as what we eat.

Remember that for each child the progression will be a little different depending on dentition and real desire and readiness to eat. Some children are simply curious about foods but not yet ready to eat. The mother must be observant of her baby to predict the right timing for introduction of foods. Into the second year, baby can have diluted nut and seed milks and avocado for their fat and protein contents, but solid soaked nuts and seeds should not be given until later to avoid the development of a nut allergy as nuts require a greater digestive capacity.

All of this is described in much detail in my book Creating Healthy Children: Through Attachment Parenting and Raw Foods which is available at



July 17

Benefits of a Raw Food Diet

Filed under Guest Writers by Frederic Patenaude

Guest Writer Donna Haybarger,

There are many forms of “diets” to combat weight gain, fight disease, or just be healthier. One of these is the Raw Food Diet, and it involves eating live, unprocessed, whole plant-based, usually organic foods. Those who live this way are confident that there are many benefits to adopting this plan.

Advocates of the Raw Food Diet believe that the healthiest meals are uncooked. Most are in agreement that food may be heated as long as it does not exceed 118 degrees Fahrenheit. There are a variety of variations of this diet, but a “Raw Foodist” eats 75 to 100 percent uncooked foods.

Those following this plan claim that enzymes are one of the most important aspects of this diet, as they are vital for digestion and absorption of nutrients. They believe heating deactivates the enzymes present in food. Therefore, the body is forced to work harder to digest cooked meals, often leading to digestive problems. In contrast, raw foods are quickly moved through the system, and they are confident this is why there are so many other benefits to the diet.

Some of the most popular foods on this plan include fresh fruits and vegetables, beans, dried fruits, grains, and legumes. Purified water, seaweeds, seeds, and nuts are also allowed. Some people eat eggs, fish, and some meats in their meals but not everyone adds these. Finally, other variations of the diet include non-pasteurized, non-homogenized milk and dairy products. However it seems most raw foodist eat strictly plant based live foods.

Raw food proponents claim one of the most obvious benefits to this diet is weight loss and long-term weight stability. Because the bulk of the food is fruits and vegetables, these high water content foods are full of fiber, and they move quickly through the body. This fiber helps combat hunger and provides a sense of satisfaction. Most of these foods are also low in calories, and this promotes long-term weight loss.

Many who prescribe to this plan of eating claim it also increases the beauty and clarity of skin and hair and it acts as an anti-aging agent. Because processed foods often are high in fat and sodium, they can increase puffiness of the skin and dull the hair. The combination of increased nutrients and vitamins make the skin clearer. Dieters also notice hair becomes shinier and healthier. Many are asked what skin and hair care they use to get that radiant glow. The answer is simply their diet. Most who eat this way feel that they look years younger and they would never go back to another way of living. They truly believe they have found the best anti-aging formula.

Another benefit of eating uncooked foods is the increased energy people feel when they follow this plan. Many attribute the extra vitality to digestion and a well-functioning digestive system. When people eat cooked, highly processed foods, digesting these foods robs their body of the energy they need to stay more active. So when you stop consuming a diet of mostly processed foods and start implementing a raw food diet you will have more energy and less stress on your body. If it takes less energy to digest your foods then you have more energy to use in your daily life. Simply put, “if you don’t use it, you have more of it.” Most supporters of the diet notice they have a significant boost of energy after eating this way for even a short period of time.

The nutrients, anti-oxidants, and vitamins that dieters get from these foods also ward off a wide variety of diseases and increase immunity. Because meals are higher in potassium, magnesium, folic acid, fiber, vitamin A, and a myriad of other nutrients, heart disease and cancer risks decrease. The insignificant amount of sugar and sodium also contribute to less diabetes and lowered blood pressure. The anti-oxidants protect against Alzheimer’s disease and macular degeneration. Rheumatic disorders like fibromyalgia and rheumatoid arthritis seem to respond well to the diet, and people notice they have less pain after just months of use, while others say their discomfort diminishes completely. A raw food diet plays a major role in healing people with many debilitating diseases.

Many people believe the adage, “You are what you eat,” and raw food supporters agree with this wholeheartedly. They are confident that cooking deactivates the enzymes and diminishes the nutrients in foods. Those that espouse this diet claim to lose weight for good, feel and look younger, have more energy and increase their immunity to disease and sickness. Raw Food Dieters are confident that this way of living promotes the healthiest, happiest life.

Guest Writer: Mindy Goldis

Here is the continuation to my previous article with the second title for the four letters S.A.L.T. (You can read part one HERE.)

SOLUTIONS – We can find many solutions or no solutions to life’s challenges.  We can live on the sidelines and do nothing at all and just let life unfold or else TAKE CHARGE!  and make a “life” for ourselves.  How do you go about doing this?  Start listening to your “inner self.”

Here is a personal example for you to understand what I mean:  when I was a child, my family and I attended synagogue and after the services they sometimes had a luncheon.  At home, we did not have any soda to drink, but at the synagogue they did have and I decided to try some.
I did not take the dark cola, rather the Sprite, thinking it was better because it was a clear color. Of course, as the story unfolds, I was completely wrong!  After I took a sip or two, I had to burp from the carbonation and I still remember to this day how it made me feel.
I had a burning sensation come out of my nostrils and felt a tightness in my chest.  Then and there I decided on my own to NEVER drink it or any carbonated beverage again!  Other people let themselves get accustomed to it and then it’ll go away.  I refused to do that.  I found the solution because I did not like how it made me feel physically.

There are many other reasons not to drink soda and that is for another article.  One thing I can tell you, if you don’t know by now, you can put a nail or a tooth in a cup of soda and it will dissolve.  What does that tell you about what it’s doing inside your body?  You decide!  I know that for me the option was clear.  The best liquid you can drink is coconut water (pure unadulterated from the tree and not wrapped in plastic) or the structured water in your fruit, such as in cucumbers, grapes, watermelon, tomatoes and the like.

If you still don’t know the solution, then try to find someone with the information that can help you achieve the health and happiness in
life.   Your body is made to be self-healing and simply needs the
tools to achieve it on your own (I believe, as well, that there is a Higher Power that works with us and knows what is best).  I have been blessed by G-d to discover this healthy lifestyle and am available to educate others, as well.

LIFEFORCE –  What is life force?  There can be numerous ways to explain this word.  What first comes to mind for me are the following
words: energy/spirit/soul, being alive, vitality, being fulfilled, having an electrical charge/frequency.  All the words I mentioned relate to the same thing.  The opposite would be dead force and that doesn’t sound very good to me.  The idea is to keep things positive, balanced and in a state of health (relatively speaking).  We can achieve this is through proper nutrition (eating living/raw vegan food), healthy relationships (with family, partner, friends, etc), emotional clarity, laughter, exercise, etc.  It is not always easy to get all the areas of life working symbiotically and it is a continual process that takes time and effort.  The benefits are worth it though!

LONGEVITY – Another great word that can mean different things.  What “pops” in my head first are:  quality of life and long-term existence.
This word again relates to our choices in life.  There are consequences to everything we do.  Remember the story about “The Boy Who Cried Wolf?”  Now relating that here, if after 30 years of eating unhealthy fast foods you wonder why you have all these ailments and dis-eases it is nobodies fault but yours!  If you could go back in time and before you took that first bite of a ———- and think to yourself “is this the right choice?  Will I regret this in 30 years from now when I am sick?  I can get a BIG salad or even two and feel good about myself?”  The unfortunate thing is that most don’t do that.

Who says that you can’t enjoy life and eat healthy?  I have been vegan for over 22 years and love my life and will NEVER go back to eating animals or animal products.  When you know the truth, why would you choose to still consume food that has been proven to cause harm to us, the animals and the Planet Earth?  I have a difficult time myself understanding this!  If some one can explain it to me, please, be my guest!

I see how much the world has changed and how children are getting the illnesses that in previous generations were only known to happen to adults  in their later years.  Doesn’t that tell you something? The vast majority of people are “consuming” for pleasure and not for health.  They don’t care about the future, only the “here and now.”
Most of them will likely not live very long and also be in a “poor”
state of health and have to take pills, see doctors, take sick days from work/school.  To me this is not life or living!  I choose to stay away from doctors because they lack the knowledge about health (they are good for emergency situations).  I want my life to be measured by a higher standard of excellence and am proactive in achieving and sustaining it.

TODAY – I am “cheating” with this word (actually stealing from myself, if that is possible, by using my explanation from the previous article, as I feel it is important to reiterate – the last paragraph is new, though).  Today is the only thing you have at this very moment!  Forget about yesterday and tomorrow.  Don’t put off what you can do right now to improve your health.  Even if you change one thing, especially removing something from your food consumption that is not beneficial.

For some baby steps work best to transition into a new lifestyle and for others they sometimes have no choice because it is their last chance/hope to be alive.  For me it is so easy and simple because I
have been living as a vegan for many years.   I have always been
self-motivated and self-disciplined.  When I decide to do something it happens (unless I take on too many projects at one time, then I have
to delegate what is most important right now).   I commend each and
every one of you who has taken charge of their own life today by seeking out the truth and journeying on the “road less traveled.”  We are in the minority (especially us “vegans”), but don’t let that discourage you ever!

Begin your journey TODAY and you will never regret it ( I have not and know that even with the ups and downs and bumps along the way – that all depends on YOU and how many years you have been putting “junk” in your body – including physical, emotional, mental, spiritual, psychological, etc.  All that has to come out and you may have some pains/symptoms /detox along the way that is normal and expected – be aware that “slow and steady” wins the race).

Read more of my articles, interviews, product reviews and 42 day coconut water cleanse, etc.

I also have a YouTube channel with product reviews and recipe ideas

For more information about my services as a vegan chef and educator please post a comment on my blog.

(after reading Raw Freedom by Frederic Patenaude)

Guest Writer, Joanna Slodownik –

I’ve just received the Raw Freedom package, and – after I’ve been reading through the chapters that caught my attention – I’d like to share a few thoughts with you.

First, let me tell you a little bit about myself. I’ve followed Frederic’s career for many years now. I found him after I read the 80/10/10 diet and I was searching for more information about the high fruit, low fat raw food diet. Over the years, I really enjoyed reading his blog, and I appreciated his honesty and directness. Also, I’m passionate about living an internet lifestyle doing what I love, so I’ve been following his advice in this area– writing ebooks, building audience, etc. (I recommend Frederic’s course “How to write your ebook” – if you’ve been stuck and overwhelmed, it will surely get you going).

Although I’ve been interested in raw foods and the benefits of eating a high-raw diet for health, I’ve never been 100% raw. After I discovered green smoothies, I’ve been drinking them religiously every day – and lots of them, but other than that I’ve been eating a pretty average diet (although, definitely on the healthy side, when compared to the American standard).

I’ve been trying to reduce the cooked foods, experimenting with raw recipes, but in the end, I decided it’s not practical or feasible – especially if you have kids and a husband who wants to eat “normal” food. So, I’m very much in agreement with Frederic about incorporating cooked foods in a healthy diet.

Where I somewhat disagree with Frederic is on the issue of veganism. Let me explain.

Reflections On Being Vegan

I’d been debating the issue of eating meat for many years. I’d been curious about being vegetarian and tried several times to go off meat completely, but it just never happened. The idea of being vegan was not even on my radar until I started experimenting with raw foods – it just seemed too hard, complicated, and even…weird. Because of the pressure of those around me, as well as the lack of strong motivation – I always succumbed to the temptation of a piece of meat, a slice of pizza, or a bowl of ice cream.

However, I kept digging deeper and deeper. I really needed some definitive answers; for myself and my readers, as people started to come to me for advice on what to eat.

After lots of research and soul searching, here is the conclusion that I reached.

Framing the issue only in terms of health, taste and convenience, is why a lot of people are still stuck in the “animal food” mode, even if they may be ready to make a shift to more compassionate living and eating.

I know, because I was stuck for 46 years. Deep down, I knew there was enormous suffering associated with animal foods, but I was dismissing this issue, blocking it from entering my consciousness. After all, this is what everyone else is eating. Not eating these foods is inconvenient and makes you different.

But then, something began to shift. I started reading more about the environmental impact of raising animals for food, as well as the terrible conditions that most of these animals have to endure their entire lives. I still wasn’t convinced. I started buying “humanely raised” animal products and organic dairy. Then I read “Eating Animals” by Jonathan Fowler and that was it. I mastered the courage to watch some of the footage on the websites of Mercy for Animals, Vegan Outreach, and Meet Your Meat. That is also when I found the inspiring podcast “Vegetarian Food For Thought” by Colleen Patrick-Goudreau, The Compassionate Cook (highly recommended!).

Even though I’ve been vegan for only a year (and some of you may dismiss me as a “new vegan,” and say, that I’ll probably go back to eating meat soon); there is no going back for me. It’s been such an incredible experience, spiritually uplifting and transforming all the areas of my life and how I view the world and the animals that share this world with us.

I too believed that the change is hard. I too was doubtful about the safety of this diet. I too read about people who failed on vegan diet and went back to eating meat. I was afraid to even try. I didn’t believe I could make it work.

But I’m doing it, and it’s so worth it.

For those of you who are still debating the issue, I want to offer the following points to consider:
Vegan diet is a healthy diet for humans. As you’ll read in Frederic’s book, this diet is sustainable and health promoting. Even the American Dietetic Association says so, and this is not an institution that supports “fad” diets. Our bodies don’t require animal foods to get the nutrients we need. And if we need to take a few supplements, that’s fine too. (Ever wonder, where do cows who are not fed on grass get their calcium? They get it from supplements, because otherwise their milk would be deficient in this important nutrient. So why not skip the “middle cow” and go right to the source – plant foods. Or simply take the supplement, and leave the cows alone.)

Meat is not unhealthy (if eaten in moderation); however, to frame the issue in terms of personal choice or personal preference is not enough. It implies that there is no “other” being hurt for our culinary pleasure or convenience.

Animals are not here for us to exploit them. They feel pain and suffering, just as we do, and they want to live. Even the so-called humanely raised animals, still suffer. (Do you know what happens to the male chicks on egg farms, whether organic or conventional? They are either milled alive, or left to suffocate in garbage bags.)

The fact that there has never been a vegan culture in the world (Frederic talks about it in his Raw Freedom – as plant foods are not available year-round in many places), is indisputable, but it doesn’t mean that we cannot make it work in the modern world. We have the resources and technology. I mean, I’m drinking green smoothies with bananas, berries and greens year round, and I’m in New Jersey, US. There are no banana trees here or berries in the winter.

You don’t have to sacrifice your deepest values of compassion to stay healthy. You also don’t have to sacrifice taste. (Although you may have to sacrifice convenience a bit.) Eating a diet of mostly raw, as well as cooked vegetables, greens, fruits, mushrooms, beans, nuts, seeds, and whole grains provides enough calories, micro-nutrients, as well as variety – that making compassionate choices is easy. These days, you can find vegan cheeses, meats, burgers, ice-creams and cupcakes – not the healthiest foods, but much more compassionate choices, if you want them. (I’m not loving vegan meats or cheeses, but the cherry-chocolate soy based ice-cream I buy at Trader Joe’s is to die for).

If there are health issues that arise, it’s now possible to find a health practitioner who understands plant-based nutrition enough, to be able to help us in a way that would not sacrifice our values. I highly recommend books by Dr. Joel Fuhrman if you want a doctor-prescribed diet.

Change is slow and unpopular. There are many examples throughout the history. Just a few hundred years ago, slavery was viewed as normal. It does take time and determination, but as more as more people make the switch, the choices will only increase, making it easier for everybody else.

As Frederic says in his book: “Would be vegans and raw foodists have never had it better. But they should consider themselves pioneers and experimenters, and remember how unusual our modern food situation is in the historical context.”

We are so proud of our progress in other areas, so why not put compassion back into the equation. Once we know better, we can do better, so let’s!

About Joanna. Joanna is a green smoothie enthusiast and the founder of website, dedicated to spreading the message about how healthy and compassionate food choices can help heal our body and the planet.

May 15

How to Lose a Cold in Ten Days (or Less)

Filed under Guest Writers by Frederic Patenaude

Guest Writer Rachel Rinehart Johnson

It’s midnight, and for the fourth night in a row, I can’t sleep. The nasty head cold I snagged during spring break has moved to my chest, and I hack up mucus for a few hours before falling into an exhausted stupor for a few hours before it’s time to wake up and go to work.

I would feel sorry for myself, but it’s my own fault. I knew better, but I made a choice last fall to have dairy at Bunco, which made it easier to have it for the holidays, and the next thing I know I am eating lasagna and ice cream on a regular basis again. After being dairy-free and gluten-free for around ten years now, I forgot what it was like to have so much mucus in the chest and throat, and I don’t like it.

Same thing goes for the skin allergy rash I developed from eating gluten again. I don’t like it at all, and it’s no fun.

Seriously, I don’t remember having a much of a cold in the past ten years. Perhaps I had a bit of a sore throat for a night, or maybe I had a fever for a day; however, since giving up wheat and diary, I am rarely sick. Once or twice a year, I might feel off for a day or two, but I bounce back fast.

The reason I cut wheat and dairy completely out of my life all those years ago was because I felt better without them and felt crappy with them. Trust me, it’s better to go cold turkey with these two because, otherwise, you become hooked again. Once you start eating gluten or dairy, your body craves them, which makes it even more difficult to resist.

For instance, the cold started last Wed, and the last day I consciously ate dairy was on Friday when I ate the steak and rice at a Japanese steakhouse even though I watched them cooked in butter in front of me. And I ate gluten a couple of weeks ago, even though I still had the itchy skin rash.

This time the cold is lingering, and nothing has completely cleared up the congestion. I’ve tried over the counter medicine, including the Musinex that three people recommended, but it didn’t do the trick.

I’ve surfed the web late at night during coughing sessions that chased away sleep to find natural remedies and tried gargling both apple cider vinegar and salt water, drinking tea with honey, lemon, and cinnamon, and most recently swallowing garlic capsules. All of those things are healthy and helpful, but it takes awhile to clear out dairy once it’s in our bodies.

The best remedy for a cold (or how to lose a cold in ten days or less): don’t get one in the first place!  And not eating gluten and dairy is one giant step in that direction.

I have given up gluten and dairy again. Gratefully. Thankfully. I would rather be healthy than eat wheat and dairy. It’s a choice that I am happy to make. Plus there are so many yummy substitutes nowadays.

It’s a challenge knowing what to eat these days, but I know I don’t want to eat gluten or dairy products. They are not worth it.

Rachel Rinehart Johnson writes narratives, poems, and children’s stories, and her work has appeared in publications such as Florida English, New Plains Review, Circa Review, Lumina, Rocking Chair Reading: Family Gatherings, New Madrid, and Country Extra. She earned an MFA in creative non-fiction from Murray State University in Kentucky. Rachel and her two daughters reside in Florida, where she teaches composition, creative writing, and English as a second language as an adjunct Instructor at Brevard Community College and Florida Institute of Technology. Her other passions include nature, photography, and travel.

Guest Writer

Mindy Goldis,

How did I come up with the title for this article?  Well, I was thinking that I am not a fan of using salt because it isn’t a necessary mineral for the body (more on that later), but I wanted to come up with something positive based on the letters that make up that word and came up with the acronym.

I thought of two titles for the same 4 letters (with a few words for some of the letters).  I am sure there are many others you can think of and are welcome to include your suggestions in the comments below.

What does any of this have to do with health? Raw foods?  Lots!

We get so wrapped up in what we are eating and forget that there is more to life then eating.  If you walk down the street and eavesdrop on others conversations to each other and on the phone, they are usually talking about where they will eat, what they will eat, going on a diet, is this food good for you, this doctor says to eat this and another says something else, etc.

Food consumption is a minuet part of a healthy lifestyle.  What is the healthiest food to eat is debatable, to a certain degree, but overall it has been proven by many reputable authorities, including Dr. Dean Ornish, Dr. Neal Barnard, Dr. Caldwell Esselstyn, Dr. T. Colin Campbell, Dr. John McDougall, Dr. Mark Hyman, Dr. Joel Fuhrman that Whole Food Plant Based is ideal.  Whether you eat 100 percent raw vegan or not, isn’t the issue!  If you want to arrest or avert the diseases that are rampant in our society today, there is no doubt this is a very important part of how we live.

I, myself have been vegan for over 22 years and have educated many people over the years who are interested in making changes to improve their lives.  One very important person who I have helped over 20 years ago, is my Dad.  He celebrated his 80th birthday on April 28, 2013.  That may have never happened after his heart attack, if he had not given up the animal foods/S.A.D. Diet.

So what else matters to our health besides the food we consume?  Going back to title of this article though it may seem vague to you what I mean with the words I choose, but I will explain.

STOP- Take a break from the day-to-day grind of life.  Clear your mind.  Take a walk on the beach without any distractions (cellphone) and enjoy nature.  Shut off all electronics for a few hours or a day – a sabbatical (I celebrate the Sabbath once a week and shut everything off for an entire day – no phone, no TVs, no computers, no cars, no writing, no cooking, etc).

SEEK – If you don’t have all the answers, that is ok.  There are many great sources for information.  Make sure to do your research diligently so you are not wasting your time or money.  We learn by doing and sometimes make mistakes.  Hopefully we learn from then and help ourself and others to not repeat it again.  On my site, I have reviews of companies who are of the highest quality and integrity.

You are also welcome to send me a comment if you have an other questions.

SELECT – How do you know what is best for you?  With all the information there is also overload and misinformation.  Don’t settle for the path of least healthy results or a fad diet (like Atkins) because they are popular in the news. The government pushes and promotes what they can make the most money from and is the worst for you.  How is it that we got so far away from the basics?  It isn’t “rocket science!”  We all know what types of food are good for us and yet there are so many “sick” people who opt for pharmaceuticals with numerous side-effects and then never get well.  They are usually afraid to go against their doctor (although statistics show that there is a large percentage of the population that is opting for alternative/holistic medicine because they are not getting the results from the drugs/treatment they are receiving from their MD) or think that the doctor has all the answers (that is the farthest from the truth, except for the ones I mentioned above who have crossed the “picket line,” so to speak, and live and promote a whole food lifestyle).

SLOW DOWN – This goes back to the first word mentioned above, but I feel it needs to be emphasized more.  We don’t do enough to take a break and do nothing.  Have you ever been in bed looking up and stared at the ceiling?  Have you ever been “turned off” and not “turned on?”

This is a loaded question, but I am referring to getting out of your head and into your body.  I know the mind is always working even when we “do nothing,”  yet we can give ourselves the opportunity to do something else to slow ourselves down.  Find something you enjoy doing that relaxes you so you forget all your cares and worries – such as knitting, arts and crafts projects, watching the waves, etc.  it is amazing what a little “time out” can do to renew yourself for the rest of the day.  If you can do it every day and be “selfish” you will do more to help others in the long run.

LISTEN – Pay attention to your intuition because it is usually right.

Don’t let others influence your decisions of you feel strongly in your gut that this is the best direction for you (with work, relationships, where you live, food choices, etc) .  Trust that even if you all of your family and friends think you are “crazy,” find others who are like-minded to turn to for assistance.  You will likely find people who will hear what you are saying and will to give you encouragement and support with what you are doing.

LIVE – Life is about living, but what kind of life do we have, if we aren’t truly alive?   Life isn’t only about feeding our physical entity.  Their is a deeper part to us that we can’t see that is spiritual in nature.  Life is a gift that we have to be thankful for every day because it can be taken away from us in an instant.  This is not a far-fetched notion that I have just come up with myself.  Do some research yourself on the Internet from legitimate sources who believe that life is much more then just the tangible.

TODAY – Today is the only thing you have at this very moment!  Forget about yesterday and tomorrow.  Don’t put off what you can do right now to improve your health.  Even if you change one thing, especially removing something from your food consumption that is not beneficial.

For some baby steps work best to transition into a new lifestyle and for others they sometimes have no choice because it is their last chance/hope to be alive.  For me it is so easy and simple because I have been living as a vegan for many years.   I have always been self-motivated and self-disciplined.  When I decide to do something it happens (unless I take on too many projects at one time, then I have to delegate what is most important right now).   I commend each and every one of you who have taken charge of their own life today by seeking out the truth and journeying on the “road less traveled.”  We are in the minority (especially us “vegans”), but don’t let that discourage you ever!

The next title I came up with for the same four letters will be explained in a future article.  Stay tuned!

Part 2 of this post can be viewed HERE

Read more of my articles, interviews, product reviews and 42 day coconut water cleanse, etc.

I also have a YouTube channel with product reviews and recipe ideas

For more information about my services as a vegan chef and educator please post a comment on my blog.

May 1

Guest Writer Gina Shaw, DSc MA AIYS Dip Irid Dip NH

As a high-percentage Fruitarian I receive a mixture of opinions in the circles I mix with. Amongst SAD dieters, people say ‘Aren’t you concerned that you’re getting too much Vitamin C from those oranges’ (a far cry from the old concerns of ‘Where do you get your protein?’). Raw food enthusiasts say ‘Oh no, I don’t eat much fruit because of the sugar content’. Everywhere I go, people are so concerned for my health because of the large amounts of fruit I consume! (even though my health has never been better since starting a high-raw diet back in 1998). So, let’s get this clear, I am one of the few people who actually follow Government recommendations clearly and consume a minimum of 5-7 portions of fruit per day. Fruit sugars do not cause diabetes, indeed a high fat diet is the leading cause of diabetes according to recent research papers. Fruits are combined with fiber which will slow down sugar release and fruit sugars will only become a problem if they are poorly combined, e.g. mixed with fats. Indeed, my body is more than able to deal with high doses of water-soluble vitamins such as vitamin C if necessary, by eliminating it out through my kidneys, just the same as it will do from excess potassium, etc.

However, I, equally, on the other hand, am very concerned about their health! Most people consume far too much protein and fat and salt in their diet, much of which is the animal variety which has been linked to heart disease, cancer, diabetes, arthritis, etc., etc.

How can you have an easily digestible healthy (high or all) raw food diet without eating lots of fruit? There are indeed many raw foodists who feel guilty after eating an orange or a few grapes. In my opinion, this is crazy and there’s no reason you shouldn’t be eating fruit (and lots of it) unless you are of course poorly combining it with other foods. That’s where Toxemia sets in. Toxemia is the saturation of the bloodstream by poisons, often caused by a SAD diet, or a lack of sleep, drug taking, alcohol, etc, etc.

So, how do these raw foodists maintain their weight without lots of fruit? The answer appears to be by eating lots of fat. Healthy? In a word ‘No’! A high fat diet, even on a high plant based diet is not conducive to health and will use up your energy in the digestion of food, and the body will have to convert the fat into glucose in order to fuel the brain cells, etc. This is a complicated process and it is far better to consume your calories from simple carbohydrates like fruit. So, are you looking for a raw food meal which will tick all the health boxes? Then look no further than your pineapple, mangoes, strawberries or melon.


April 23

Focus on Diet First

Filed under Blog, Exercise and Fitness, Guest Writers by Frederic Patenaude

The biggest bang for your health may not be on the treadmill.

By, Bill Kranker

The other day I was watching an old episode of a TV show called “Magnum PI” which stared Tom Selleck.  In many of the episodes Tom’s character was shown doing some type of athletic thing like jogging or swimming or running a marathon which is all really great but often he would also be shown reaching for a beer just after a run or as he was drying off after a swim.  Back in the 1980’s, when the show was popular on TV, I would have thought nothing of this as I was not much better myself. I would go for a run or workout and then have a steak and potato dinner with ice scream for dessert.   The theory back then was that it did not matter much what you eat because you could just work it off later.  But is this really the case?  Can you just work off any type of food that you put into your mouth?  Let’s look at a few facts:

First, what about working off those excess Calories?  According to, running uses up about 105 net calories per mile (this is net calories over what you would use just lying on the couch. For women it would be about 74 calories net).  I have seen people (Including myself!) easily consume over 800 excess calories per day on a regular unhealthy diet. So using the above formula we would need to run about 8 miles in order to burn up those 800 extra calories.  In reality how many of us are really going to do that much running every day?  Or maybe, you think that just walking will burn off that extra indulgence.  Walking only uses up about 52 net calories (43 for the ladies) so you would need to walk the equivalent of a half-marathon in order to remove the caloric excess!  That is a good amount of exercise for the average person.  And as for Mr. Magnum he would need to run about an extra 2 miles just to work off that 200 Calorie beer.  (Calories of beer courtesy of

Second: Not all calories are created equal.  When people take in too much it is usually the fat calories that they add in excess.  800 Calories of fat such as animal foods or even healthy fats like avocado are much harder for humans to use up because we are not very well equipped for digesting fat (we lack the required digestive enzyme) so any extra calories from fat will get set aside (around our waist and hips) for later disposition while the body concentrates on the useful carb calories it needs for energy.  So a run on the treadmill is likely not very effective against these fatty calories.

Third: a lot of the calories we take in are pure chemical junk and will have to go through a much more complicated process than simple digestion and conversion to energy.  Often these bad calories are stored in our fat layer or diluted with water for later disposal when more energy is available.  Often this extra energy does not become available and these bad chemicals just hang around in our padding.  In essence, we become a storage unit of toxic waste! So what are these junk calories?  How about “artificial flavors” or anything on those ingredient labels that you can’t easily pronounce. Again, this type of calorie is not easy to “Work Off!”

So if you are really interested in becoming healthy I would start with making the necessary dietary changes first as you will get much more accomplished by changing your diet than you will with all of those hours spent on the treadmill!

So what are some of those dietary changes you ask?  The following are my basic rules for food:

1)      Stay away from packaged and processed foods as much as possible.  If it comes in a can, box, bag or bottle you should probably try and avoid it.  Also if it has a nutrition label on it, don’t bother reading all of that fine print, just pass it by!

2)      Make the majority of your food intake from fruit.  Fruit has the highest calorie to weight ratio of all of the fresh unprocessed foods.  Fruit is also composed of healthy carb calories that provide us the cellular energy we need.  In this case these calories are the good calories!

3)      Make sure to also get some greens and healthy fats into your diet.  Greens, such as spinach, collards or kale, have the minerals you need and the fats such as avocado and nuts provide fuel for your brain.  Just keep the fats to a minimum though (about ½ avocado or a small palm full of nuts per day average at most)

Don’t just take my word for it.  Keep studying and researching.  A good place to start is with some of Frederic’s great books that have a wealth of healthy info and recipes in them.  It is better to learn from the success and failures of others than by trial and error yourself!

So change your diet first and then let the workout begin!

Until next time make at least one change for the better each and every day!