Category Archives: Best Healthy Plant Based Diets

Raw Food Cookbooks

The following information is for education only and is not meant to diagnose, prescribe, or treat illness.

As raw dieting is gaining ground among health food enthusiasts, various chefs and nutritionists from all over the world are using their experience, talent and love for a healthy lifestyle to bring together exciting raw food cookbooks for everyone. Luckily, there are recipe books to cater to every taste. LA Chef Ani Phyo stresses the importance of keeping things simple and easy in her lovely cookbooks, such as “Ani’s Raw Food Asia: Easy East-West Fusion Recipes the Raw Food Way” and “Ani’s Raw Food Kitchen: Easy, Delectable Living Foods Recipes”, whilst author and clinical nutrition expert Lisa Mann looks at international cuisines for inspiration in her book “The World Goes Raw Cookbook: An International Collection of Raw Vegetarian Recipes”. Moreover, gourmet vegan and live food chef Mark Reinfeld has even pieced together a guide for beginners, which he affectionately called “The Complete Idiot’s Guide To Eating Raw“, while nationally recognized raw food chef and instructor Jennifer Cornbleet comes to the rescue of raw dieters with a sweet tooth in her “Raw for Dessert: Easy Delights for Everyone” cookbook (more on this book below).

Ani Phyo’s most recent book, “Raw Food Essentials: Recipes and Techniques for Mastering the Art of Live Food” was named a top ten vegan cookbook by VegNews in July 2010 and is a treasure for any raw food lover, regardless of culinary experience. Praised by critics for her simplicity in whipping out amazing dishes that taste like a million bucks, Ani Phyo invites readers on a roller-coaster ride of flavor and innovation with her raw renditions of comfort food classics like nachos and burgers, along with gourmet dishes done the easy and raw way, like risotto, angel hair pasta, and mouth-watering “you-won’t-believe’they’re-raw” desserts. Many people who have purchased this book consider it to be Ani Phyo’s best yet, and a great introduction to the world of raw food for those of us who are not yet fully convinced to go raw. However, some experienced raw foodists have found part of the recipes to be redundant and the book to be lacking sufficient colorful pictures to complement the recipes.

Everyday Raw by New York author, chef and entrepreneur Matthew Kenney, puts forth creative and exotic recipes for juices and smoothies (including Sweet Green Juice with carrots, cucumbers, apples and herbs, Mango Raspberry juice with vanilla, and delicate Chocolate-Cherry smoothies), along with raw tomato-based soups and Portobello “steaks”, consisting of tasty seasoned and dehydrated mushrooms. While the dishes are very appetizing and nutritionally dense, they also tend to require a lot of processing and specialized equipment, and may seem complicated to the untrained cook. Many customers of this cookbook have praised it for its elaborate and delicious recipes, while noting that some are time consuming and require hard to find ingredients and spices.

Raw for Dessert: Easy Delights for Everyone is an acclaimed cookbook that has reached well beyond the raw food community. Offering healthy dessert solutions prepared outside the oven, Jennifer Cornbleet has proven to be a true mastermind of heavenly treats – Chocolate Cupcakes and Ganache take no-bake desserts to a whole new level. While easy to make fruity tarts seem like the refreshing summer rule for chefs everywhere, Jennifer Cornbleet uses her no white sugar, no white flour, no dairy products, no trans-fats, no saturated fats, and no flame rule to come up with desserts for any season and pocket: Caramel Apple Stacks, Creme Brulee, Pineapple Upside Down Cake, Brazil Nut-Vanilla Ice Cream, Coconut Cream Pie, Tropical Ambrosia Tart, Pine Nut Caramels, Concord Grape Sorbet, and dozens more. A lot of people who have bought this cookbook and tried out the recipes have been excited to prepare them and very pleased with the results. Most have praised the desserts for being healthy and savory, while easy to make and well liked by everyone at the table!

Why Raw Seaweeds?

The following information is for education only and is not meant to diagnose, prescribe, or treat illness.

Seaweeds are marine macroalgae that have attained some degree of popularity over the years, mainly due to their incredible versatility. Their many uses range from industrial, to medicinal, to culinary. Some seaweeds are used as fertilizers, while others are used to bind a variety of products. Carrageenans, for example, are polysaccharides extracted from red marine algae, that are added to ice-creams, cosmetics, toothpaste, pet food and lubricants to thicken and stabilize them.

East Asian cuisine makes use of raw seaweeds in soups, salads or as a wrap for fish, rice and other vegetables. The Japanese commercialize about 7 types of edible seaweeds, with the most popular being dulse, kelp, nori, irish moss, wakame and sea lettuce. Populations inhabiting Arctic regions also rely on the consumption of seaweeds as one of the very few green vegetables available in that climate. Known for being highly nutritious, marine algae can bring valuable contributions to a diet, even when consumed in small quantities.

Unlike the Inuit people of the Arctic, most of us have access to a wide range of green leafy vegetables. So what makes seaweeds stand out? For one, they have an unusually high vitamin and mineral content. In truth, they have more nutrients, in greater quantities, than any other fruit or vegetable we can find on land. Thanks to the environment they thrive in, marine algae are a very good source of iodine. While most people get their iodine from chemically enriched table salt, seaweeds provide this mineral naturally. Iodine is absolutely necessary in human diets, to support thyroid function and prevent goiter.

Moreover, marine algae are known to have anti-viral, anti-bacterial and anti-fungal properties, making them an excellent ally of our immune systems. A fortified immunity means that the body is better equipped to fight against microbes and illnesses.

Contrary to popular opinion, seaweeds are not biologically classified as plants, but are in fact part of an ancient group of organisms called Protista, that has existed for over 3 billion years. Since they have adapted so well, many nutritionists believe that seaweeds may hold the secrets to great health and longevity. And these are not mere assumptions, as they are backed by scientific research, which has shown that seaweeds are reliable vegan sources of protein, calcium, magnesium and vitamin C (with a higher content than oranges), vitamins of the B complex, vitamin A and several more. In fact, a recent study comparing the curative properties of bioactive peptides harvested from seaweeds and from milk has revealed that seaweeds can also help lower blood pressure and prevent cardiovascular disease. Unlike hypertension medication, peptides from seaweeds have no contraindications or associated risks, demonstrating once again that Mother Nature is undoubtedly superior to man-made cures.

Many seaweeds, such as wakame and bladderwrack, also contain a very interesting substance called fucoidan. This compound has been the subject of several research tests, which have concluded that it has the ability to inhibit hyperplasia in rabbits, as well as kill human cancer cells in vitro. The efficiency of fuicoidan in vivo has not yet been documented, however, there is strong evidence that the compound is indeed medically valuable.

Thanks to their slightly sweet and salty taste, seaweeds can easily be eaten raw, as an addition to salads or even to add a twist to classical green smoothies. They can eliminate the need for added salt and also deliver natural iodine in the process. With so many health advantages, seaweeds are truly hard to ignore! Nonetheless, as with everything else, iodine in very large quantities can be detrimental to health, and that is why it is important to consume the precious seaweeds in moderation!

Whole Food vs Raw

The following information is for education only and is not meant to diagnose, prescribe, or treat illness.

In the quest for optimal health, people often stumble across the idea of the raw food diet, the vegan diet, the vegetarian diet, a whole foods diet, and the list goes on. Along with the innumerable diets available there are just as many opinions on what is considered healthy and what is not.

Given enough knowledge on the topic, I feel one would look at a raw food vegan diet coupled with wild foods to be the most healing, cleansing, medicinal and tonifying diet. I also feel that a whole foods, high raw, high vegan, high green diet can be looked at as a diet that contributes to long term health.

So, when looking at a whole foods partially cooked diet, or a whole foods raw diet, as being the best choice I think it is an individual decision (as everyone’s needs are different) and it depends a lot on one’s ultimate health goals.

To detox and cleanse and strengthen my defences against illness and/or disease, I personally undertake a 2 month raw food cleansing diet and add non-food elements into the protocol for the most efficient cleansing. I incorporate light exercise, usually in the form of rebounding. I also include sessions in a dry sauna into the protocol, as well as massage, dry brushing, parasite cleansing herbs, detox teas, once or twice weekly colon hydrotherapy sessions and daily enemas.

I also incorporate a lof of the previously mentioned cleansing regimes into my long term health plan. After cleansing completely, usually for 2 months of every year, I begin to include a little cooked foods and animal by-products back into my diet. I will enjoy some naturally raised meats, eggs, bee products and raw goats milk if I can get my hands on any. I avoid processed foods as best I can and just stick to whole foods that were locally raised and grown, without the use of pesticides when possible and in as fresh a form as I can find.

I also feel that mono-eating is an important part of “training” your body to “catalogue” major nutrients found in food. This is said to help your body generate cravings for a particular food when in need of the main nutrient abundant in that food. This is best done after a thorough cleanse since your cells should be made up of healthful components at that time, therefore it is the “nutrient needs” generating the cravings rather than “addictions”.

To assist in a raw food cleansing diet (and to instill good habits if continuing whole foods and high raw), complete with shopping lists and recipes, I recommend Joy Houston’s Rocking Body Raw Food which offers a two week step-by-step detailed plan with video instruction. For a more affordable raw diet plan (no video instruction) Laura-Jane’s Raw Food Diet Plan is a fantastic choice.

Raw Food Restaurants in New York

The following information is for education only and is not meant to diagnose, prescribe, or treat illness.

Eating foods in their natural, uncooked form, or embracing the now famous raw diet, may seem like a modern adventure to some people, but in reality this practice goes back a long away. While the first restaurants to explicitly offer raw dishes in their menus were first established in California sometime early in the 20th century, New York has been showcasing its very own vibrant raw food community, in some of the friendliest and chic restaurants, since the late 90s, and it has been growing in popularity ever since. Some of the most well-know locations include Quintessence, Pure Food and Wine, Terri, Blossom, HanGawi, Franchia, Bonobo’s Vegetarian Restaurant, Candle Cafe, Sacred Chow and many others. (note: some of the aforementioned restaurants are “raw-friendly”, but not exclusively raw)

1. “QUINTESSENCE”
263 E 10th Street
NYC, NY, 10009
(646) 654-1823
http://www.raw-q.com/

Perhaps the first and currently most prominent New York raw food restaurant to become widely exclaimed for its broad offer of fine, delish meals, Quintessence was founded in 1999 by Hong Kong native Mun (Tolentin) Chan, who spent her childhood years picking up the secrets of the trade in her family’s restaurant, together with her partner, Raw Chef Dan, who discovered his passion for organic, natural foods after working for 10 years as an electronics contractor. This unexpected pairing struck gold with a cozy restaurant atmosphere, supported by an engaging website that offers a lovely selection of raw recipes, an introduction to the raw philosophy, useful reviews and upcoming events. Their mouth-watering salads, entrees, desserts, smoothies, soups, side dishes and lunch combos are affordable and look amazing.

2. “PURE FOOD AND WINE”
54 Irving Place
NYC, NY, 10003
(212) 477-1010
http://www.oneluckyduck.com/purefoodandwine/

Opened in 2004 by Sarma Melngailis – prominent businesswoman, chef and author – the restaurant can cater to the highest culinary demands with its savory raw vegan dishes, in a soothing and elegant decor. Appetizing and sophisticated courses which blend in elements from Italian culinary traditions, such as King Oyster Mushroom Scallops in a Lemongrass Coconut Broth, or Zucchini, Local Roma and Heirloom Tomato Lasagna, and Salted Chocolate Caramel Tart will gratify your senses with innovative combinations of perfectly balanced flavors. The masters behind these delicacies are chef de cuisine Tara Punzone, assisted by sous chef Nikki King, while their raw organic smoothies are designed and prepared by Joey Repice.

3. “HANGAWI” (Popular Raw Friendly Dining)
12 East 32nd St
NYC, NY, 10016
(212) 213-0077
http://www.hangawirestaurant.com/

This exquisite restaurant is one of the busiest vegan locations in New York, so it is a good idea to book ahead if you are planning to dine here. Oriental motifs complement the relaxed, intimate ambiance, while their vegetarian and vegan menu invites you to delight in the best gourmet dishes of the Korean cuisine. Their philosophy is centered on the pursuit of balance and tranquility, which the Asians believe can be achieved only through a healthy mind in a healthy body. Vegetarian dumplings, spicy kimichi mushroom pancakes, stuffed shiitake mushrooms, organic dandelion and avocado salads, mountain roots and greens, and many other luscious meals will keep you coming back again and again for another exotic eating experience.

Below is a short list of raw or raw friendly, sometimes organic and either vegetarian or vegan restaurants in New York:

Raw Foods To Lower Cholesterol

The following information is for education only and is not meant to diagnose, prescribe, or treat illness.

Author Bio: Andrew Turner writes at Clobber Cholesterol about our modern struggle with cholesterol and advocates a balanced lifestyle through proper food and exercise as the key to maintaining proper cholesterol levels and a health heart.

Most people already know that raw fruits and vegetables are often better sources of nutrition than those that are cooked. What most people don’t know is that certain raw foods are also better at lowering cholesterol. Consuming these foods raw will ensure that all nutrients are kept intact, instead of weakened or actually cooked out of the food.

When working to lower cholesterol, some raw foods have proven to be effective. These foods include:

Garlic – Garlic contains an ingredient called allicin that has proven, through numerous studies, to help lower cholesterol. Research has shown that garlic will help to lower LDL cholesterol, while raising a person’s HDL cholesterol. Garlic is one of nature’s strongest anti-oxidants. When consumed on a regular basis, garlic will prevent LDL cholesterol from being oxidized.

Incorporating raw garlic into your diet is actually very easy. Finely chopped garlic makes a great addition to salad dressings, sauces, and can be added in almost any vegetable dish. For a healthy snack, puree raw garlic with chickpeas, lemon juice, tahini, and a tiny bit of extra virgin olive oil. Homemade hummus is great on toast or when used as a vegetable dip.

Dark Leafy Greens – Leafy green vegetables, like spinach, arugula, kale, chard, and romaine lettuce, are great sources of nutrients. These vegetables are high in fiber, which is known to help lower cholesterol levels. Leafy greens are also great sources of phytochemicals, vitamins, and minerals that will help improve overall health.

To get enough leafy greens, begin eating a salad before lunch and dinner or try a green smoothie. To keep the salad healthy, use lemon juice and raw garlic as dressing. Not only will this help lower your cholesterol, but it will keep you from filling up on more fattening foods.

Salmon – Although not part of a vegan diet, raw salmon is a great source of omega-3 essential fatty acids. Omega-3 fatty acids help to decrease the amount of triglycerides and LDL in the blood, while slightly raising the amount of HDL. This helps to improve cholesterol and prevent heart disease.

Many people prefer to eat raw salmon by pairing it with rice and wrapping it in seaweed, which is called sashimi. More daring sashimi lovers will simply add a bit of lemon juice, black pepper, and/or Nama Shoyu and eat the salmon alone. While raw salmon may sounds intimidating, it is actually delicious.

By incorporating these three raw foods into your diet, you will lower your cholesterol, as well as improve your overall nutrition and health. Consuming these foods on a regular basis is one of the best ways to lower cholesterol safely and naturally.

Green Smoothie Raw Food Weight Gain

The following information is for education only and is not meant to diagnose, prescribe, or treat illness.

In general we discuss raw and living foods and how it might contribute to weight loss. However, there are some people in the opposite boat. These people want/need to gain weight but they have a desire to eat cleanly and put on healthy pounds. Healthy weight gain is what they are after.

My brother… he is a 34 year old, mostly organic, mostly raw food vegan. He primarily consumes green smoothies out of shear convenience, as well as for all the health advantages he read about in Victoria’s book.

Click HERE for a free download of a handy raw smoothie resource list which includes links to tools and supplies, recipes, diet challenges, a free mini-course, and more.

After on green smoothies for a couple of months he felt energized and inspired to get “back to the gym” in hopes to perhaps gain muscle weight. He dabbled in weight lifting in the past to try and put on muscle and boost his confidence, etc. This time he wanted to take it more seriously, so he paid for a year membership, in hopes to be more committed, and also hired a personal trainer.

After several weeks of his trainer dogging him about his diet and suggesting heavy laden animal foods and sugary foods that take a long time to digest, in order to gain the desired weight, he fired his trainer and continued to workout on his own, and went on a quest looking for a weight gain diet that he was happy with.

He only ever ate when he felt hungry (and didn’t force feed as suggested by other body builders), decided against counting calories, and researched ways to add more healthy protein and calorie rich foods to his diet.

He noticed that he had more of an appetite going to the gym and increased his green smoothie intake by an extra litre, (your body will tell you how much it wants) but this really only maintained his existing weight. He was getting stronger but not heavier and no real difference in size.

Then he read about Himalayan figs, a calorie dense fruit that tasted wonderful in green smoothies, and for some raw foodists, considered the healthiest choice of all weight gain foods. He soaked a package of figs in the fridge each night (easier to digest after being soaked) and throughout the day added several to each smoothie, and finally including the soak water in his last smoothie of the day. He kept this up and began to gain some weight!

Realizing there were still other ways to gain weight, he looked into some “healthy” fattier fish (remember, he is not 100% raw vegan, just mostly) and decided a good choice would be anchovies and/or sardines. He happens to like the taste so added a couple cans each week to his diet, just eating them straight from the can. He wasn’t (and still isn’t) sure if this helped gain more pounds because he made another change at the same time, but I thought it was still worth mentioning and perhaps experimenting with yourself if you are looking to gain weight.

Now.. at the same time he introduced fish, he also started adding raw organic nut butters, like almond butter and cashew butter to his smoothies. It adds to the flavour but is a bit overpowering so he only adds it to maybe half his smoothies throughout the day. He began noticing more weight being put on from this added dose of calories.

Finally, in order to get some more Omega 3’s and protein in his diet, he opted for an affordable supplement. The supplement is called Ruth’s Hemp Protein Powder with E3 Live and Maca. He says he doesn’t like the flavour of the smoothie as much after adding it so he also adds in the nut butter at the same time. He just uses maybe a scoop a day and the container ends up lasting him months and is very cheap. He keeps it in the fridge to keep it fresh.

As an additional boost, not for weight gain but for high quality minerals he occasionally adds a few pieces of fresh dulse to his smoothies. He is one of the healthiest guys I know, can’t remember the last time he was sick, manages to gain weight on a clean diet, people are always commenting on his nice skin and bright eyes and he has energy to spare.

Mind you… he’ll grab a slice of pizza when out with friends, and even eat a tuna sandwich with whole wheat bread when the choices are slim but I’d say all in all, his diet is 90% clean. He gets colonics every few months as well and this doesn’t result in weight loss for him, probably just a lot less toxicity.

You may notice that I deliberately left out amounts, numbers, figures, etc. Everyone is different. Everyone, I feel, should listen to their body. If you feel hungry, eat. That’s it. It’s hectic and irritating to count calories all the time. My brother doesn’t worry about any of that.. he eats when he (well, his body) wants to. He just remains conscious of what he is and isn’t eating. Nothing is written down, charted or measured. Really, where would the fun be in that? Keep it simple 🙂

The above information is for education only and is not meant to diagnose, prescribe, or treat illness. It is valuable to seek the advice of an alternative health care professional before making any changes. The statements above have not been evaluated by the FDA (or your country’s equivalent). Any products mentioned are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.

9 Healthy Restaurants In United States

The following information is for education only and is not meant to diagnose, prescribe, or treat illness.

Kevin Gianni and his wife Anne Marie traveled to 50 cities across the U.S. in the search for a healthy menu. They found 9 restaurants to top the list of the healthiest restaurants they dined at. Mind you… not all were raw but mostly all were organic restaurants… others being vegan or vegetarian.

Below I embedded their YouTube video discussing the restaurants. You can also view the video directly on YouTube by clicking here. Below the video is some information about the specific restaurants including locations and type of food.

Chocola Tree

Chocola Tree, located at 1595 West Highway 89A in Sedona, Arizona, 86336, offers more than just the everyday lunch and dinner. Its fabulous menu consists of only the freshest organic (and mostly raw) foods available to the area. The owners also have their own on-site year-round garden which holds bountiful spices and herbs to compliment any dish on the extensive menu. To quote a patron who visits Sedona specifically for a trip to the Chocola Tree, this cafe/chocolate shop is a “little piece of rawsomeness!” They also offer shipping of many of their organic menu items online. To get the order form today, visit http://www.chocolatreecafe.com/roots/store.

Bloodroot

Overlooking the harbor in Bridgeport, Connecticut, the Bloodroot is a feminist vegetarian restaurant. Sidled with its very own feminist bookstore, it is located in an ideal location at 85 Ferris Street, Bridgeport, Connecticut, 06605. Just over 33 years ago, Selma Miriam and Noel Furie opened Bloodroot with an idea to bring feminism and a healthy vegetarian diet together. The menu is diverse, offering organics, raw foods, and plenty of ethnic treats, sure to please any palate. Miriam and Noel grow a lot of their own produce and refuse to compromise the quality of any ingredient in their dishes. This patron pleaser is a must on any Connecticut-travellers list of ‘things to do.’ For those not traveling in the area, feel free to click http://bloodroot.com to get access to great recipes from this fantastic find.

Karma Road

Karma Road, also known as the “taste of integrity”, is located at 11 Main Street, in New Paltz, New York, 12561. Owners, partners, and cooks, Jenn and Seth created a vegetarian menu designed to feed the soul. Indicated by the carefully chosen name, this wonderful cafe will only use organic, pesticide-free, and all-natural products to sustain its good karma with the environment. This little piece of karmic goodness offers cooking classes, as well as online-ordered bakery treats and there is always an opportunity to catch a guest-speaker once a month! They can be found on the worldwide web at http://www.karmaroad.net.

Au Lac

In 1997, owner Mai Nguyen introduced Fountain Valley to wonderful vegetarian cuisine to be enjoyed in a friendly, healthy environment. Au Lac is located at 16563 Brookhurst Street, Fountain Valley, California, 92708 and is home to a unique term (humanese) in the food industry. Chef Ito arrived on the scene in 2001 and took Mai’s creation and added his own special touches, which included his self-created cuisine known as “humanese”. All options on this menu are created with the intention of uniting everyone who dines there into one equal entity. This holistic approach to the body-spirit connection has been working and is becoming increasingly popular to patrons of all ages. You will leave feeling physically and mentally refreshed!

Real Food Daily

Escape to the old world with new world flavors. Real Food Daily (RFD) is a vegan restaurant housing two locations. It can be found at 514 Santa Monica Blvd, Santa Monica, California, 90401 and 414 N. La Cienega Blvd, Los Angeles, California, 90048. Owner Ann Gentry started the business as a home catering company in 1988 and founded the restaurant in 1993. RFD gets back to basics with almost everything on the menu being made from scratch, while keeping up with new times, turning to the raw food/vegan movement for a more modern, healthier lifestyle. Visit http://www.realfood.com today to get a taste of health.

Help Yourself

Help Yourself is a fantastic little getaway from the everyday and can be found at 829 Fleming Street, Key West, Florida, 33040. Focussed on a healthy, informative way to eat, the extensive menu has options for any dietary lifestyle, ranging from raw and vegan to some meat options as well. Owner, Charlie Wilson will only serve high-quality food that does not contain additives, any unnatural chemicals, or hormones. Most food on the menu is locally grown. In fact, many of the herbs and spices found in the fabulous menu items are growing right outside the front door. This restaurant is home to many everyday patrons as well as curious tourists looking for a nutritious bite. Check it out for yourself at http://www.helpyourselffoods.com.

Cafe Gratitude

Cafe Gratitude is not just a cafe… it’s a contribution to the environment and it puts patrons on a path to a healthier, earth-friendly lifestyle. This little taste of life only offers raw or “live” foods, and owners Matthew and Terces Engelhart consider the environment on every level of their business, not only in the food they choose. If you’re looking to enjoy live food in a tranquil, soul-cleansing environment, Cafe Gratitude is a must. With five locations throughout California, business is booming. More and more people are making environment-driven choices regarding their diet and their well-being in general and Cafe Gratitude is an easy step along this path. To get started down the road to serenity, you can visit the cafe at any one of these locations; 2400 Harrison Street, San Francisco, California 94110,… 1730 Shattuck Ave, Berkeley, California 94122,… 2200 Fourth Street, San Rafael, California 94901,… 206 Healdsburg Ave, Healdsburg, California 95448,… and 230 Bay Place, Oakland, California 94612. For those who would like to take a look first, check it out at http://www.cafegratitude.com.

Manzanita

Manzanita is a Macrobiotic Restaurant located at 4001 Linden Street, Oakland, California, 94608. On the menu you will find lots of delicious raw, vegan, and organic options. This fantastic eating place uses its healthy menu to encourage and support a healthier lifestyle and an overall healthier way of thinking. As one patron puts it, “It is like you can feel the enhancement of your immune system and adding a month of life on – at every meal.” Owners are very friendly and will often allow menu substitutions if requested. To get an idea of what the healthier you is in for on a visit, check out this link, http://www.manzanitaworld.com.

The Living Light Culinary Arts Institute

The Living Light Culinary Arts Institute is a place for students to learn how to eat and live healthy. It’s about empowering the individual to make the healthy choices to live the best life possible. The cafe in the Institute is an organic gourmet raw vegan cafe with plenty of options. The founder, Cherie Soria chooses only the freshest organic ingredients possible to make up the cafe’s carefully selected menu items. The Institute itself can be found at 301-B North Main Street, Fort Bragg, California, 95437 and this is also home to the wonderful cafe as well as many culinary events and specialized classes. This is a great opportunity to taste some wonderful organic raw vegan creations and learn to create some as well!

Organic Sprouting

The following information is for education only and is not meant to diagnose, prescribe, or treat illness.

Some raw foodists consider sprouts to be the healthiest of the healthiest foods available. Organic sprouting is that much more healthy because there are no harmful chemicals used in the process.

The process of sprouting essentially involves soaking, draining and then rinsing beans and seeds at regular intervals until they germinate, or sprout. It is suggested that a plant is at its strongest nutritionally during the sprouting stage. Because of all of the “energy” required for the sprout to break from the seed this makes sense. And, sprouts are a true “living food” as they are generally alive and still growing when consumed.

Necessary for the germination process, sprouts are rich in digestible energy, bioavailable vitamins, minerals, amino acids, proteins, and phytochemicals. Some sprouts are suggested to even be complete proteins as they contain all of the essentials amino acids. Also, vitamins and minerals are suggested to increase from 13-600% during sprouting.

Sprouts add enzymes which are said to heal the body as a whole and of course aid in digestion. Some sprouts can be put in indirect sunlight during the final stages. This will introduce tiny green leaves, and therefore cancer-fighting chlorophyll to the sprouts. Indirect sunlight may also promote increased Vitamin A and protein levels into the sprout.

When you grow sprouts you are also growing a wonderful source of fiber which can contribute to colon health.

Basics Of Growing Sprouts

To start growing sprouts you must first soak the seeds or beans. Use room temperature purified water for the soaking and rinsing. Soaking will end it’s dormancy and begin new life, life that we can consume in the form of living food and living energy! Once the seed has soaked up sufficient amounts of water it is alive and therefore a nutritional powerhouse in it’s own respect. At this stage enzymes are active and in some cases the food has turned from acidic to alkaline.

Given the right amount of moisture a seed will begin germination. Rinsing seeds at regular intervals will keep their thirst quenched. Between rinsing and draining is when they grow. Constant draining is a good idea since you do not want the seeds or sprouts to sit in water and allow mould to grow.

Although some say the timing, amount of water for soaking, number of rinse/drain cycles for different seeds and plants vary, here is a standard approach we take when sprouting. We often sprout organic buckwheat, sunflower seeds, adzuki and mung beans, broccoli seeds, radish and other tiny seeds.

First we prepare a large sterilized jar with a screen lid. We mix in equal amounts of water and seeds, not too much, just enough seeds to cover 1 or 2 layers at the bottom. They will fill the jar quickly during the sprouting stage. We then let the jar stand for about 24 hours inside of a clean dry cupboard to avoid too much light. We then thoroughly drain the water from the jar keeping in mind not to bang or shake the seeds around too much.

An additional quick rinse at this stage doesn’t hurt. Then, we put the jar upside down at a 45 degree angle resting inside of a bowl. We do this to allow constant draining of the seeds. Then we cover the jar with a towel keeping out direct light. Then, a couple times each day we will rinse, then drain the seeds. At this time we will be sure to get a clean bowl and even a clean towel if the one being used becomes wet.

When the sprouts get to a size we are happy with we give them one final rinse, put them into a bowl with a paper towel on the top and the bottom and store them in the fridge. We may just remove the towel at this point and set them in indirect sunlight if we want some chlorophyll action, or for growing wheatgrass, or for greens to use in our green smoothies. If so, we might do that for an extra day or two being sure to rinse/drain as normal.

We try to consume the sprouts (or greens) within the first day of putting them in the fridge but even a few days has been OK for us. Continual rinse/drain cycles are done even while they are in the fridge. Also, being sure to have a clean bowl and new paper towels is important.

Raw Restaurants

The following information is for education only and is not meant to diagnose, prescribe, or treat illness.

As the raw food revolution continues to grow, more and more raw food restaurants emerge. Adopting a raw food diet can limit one to merely snack or eat salads while away from home, since most restaurants serve primarily cooked meals. Furthermore, finding raw organic food at a regular restaurant is nearly impossible. So, in order to meet the need of a growing population of raw diners, more and more raw food restaurants are opening worldwide, and many of them serve high end raw food cuisine.

The world of raw food cuisine itself is still growing and evolving, so it is understandable why raw food restaurants are still very hard to find. While locating different raw food recipes online is fairly easy, creating an entire restaurant menu of raw food dishes can be more challenging.

Furthermore, in order to stay in business a raw food restaurant has to be located in a community full of raw food enthusiasts, and the restaurant has to appeal to the particular tastes of those patrons. Such a challenge is usually undertaken by raw food chefs who have committed to the lifestyle themselves and understand how to make it all work.

However, as interest grows in the raw food lifestyle, many chefs and restaurant owners who begin to eat healthier themselves will begin to explore the option of opening raw organic food restaurants.

Raw food restaurants are fairly new on the global scene, and are therefore most easily located in major world cities like Toronto, London, and Los Angeles. However, as raw food enthusiasts continue to grow as a viable market, restaurateurs will see the importance of opening more raw food restaurants in their local areas and around the world. If you live in one of the following areas or will be traveling there soon, be sure to reference our list of raw food restaurants and sample their culinary delights.

Raw Food Restaurants – Toronto


Live Organic Food Bar
264 Dupont Street

Rawlicious
3092 Dundas Street West

Raw Aura
94 Lakeshore Road East

Raw Food Restaurants – London


Inspiral Lounge
250 Camden High Street
Camden

Ottolenghi
287 Upper Street
Islington, London

Raw
Selfridges Foodhall
400 Oxford Street
London

Saf
152-154 Curtain Road
Shoreditch, London

VitaOrganic
74 Wardour Street
London

Raw Food Restaurants – Los Angeles


CRU Cafe
1521 Griffith Park Blvd
crusilverlake.com

Elderberries (raw-friendly)
7564 West Sunset Blvd.

The above information is for education only and is not meant to diagnose, prescribe, or treat illness. It is valuable to seek the advice of an alternative health care professional before making any changes. The statements above have not been evaluated by the FDA (or your country’s equivalent). Any products mentioned are not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.

Raw Organic Foods

It makes perfect sense then that most raw food enthusiasts are committed to eating raw food that has not itself been contaminated with fertilizers, pesticides, and other unnatural substances designed to artificially influence the growth process.

This commitment, while creating a healthier, more conscious lifestyle, makes the grocery shopping less convenient for raw foodists, since everyone does not have easy access to organic grocery stores. However, with a little research and the right strategy, eating a healthy diet of raw organic food is very much possible, no matter where you live.

Depending on where you live, finding raw organic food can be a challenge. It is easy to find farmer’s markets in rural areas, but not always as easily to find fully organic farms. In urban areas, many grocery stores have an organic produce section, but the selection often leaves much to be desired.

Organic grocery stores do exist, but not everyone has access to them. This does not mean, however, that raw foodists without access to an organic raw food store cannot benefit from the diet and lifestyle. It just means that you have to employ more creative grocery shopping options – like shopping online.

There are online retailers of raw organic food products that can help you make your grocery shopping easier. While it is always best to buy local when you can, sometimes you simply cannot. So, the best way to find harmony is to create a raw food shopping list with everything you will need to create your meals for a significant period of time.

Then research how much on your list you can get from local retailers. Although you may have to visit more than one store, you may be able to get most of what you need right where you are. Anything else on your raw food shopping list that you cannot find locally should be available through major raw organic online retailers.

As you browse the selection in online raw food stores, you might actually find some goodies and essentials that you had not previously considered, like dried fruits and organic nut butters. Modern technology and personal commitment now make it possible for raw foodists everywhere to live healthier lives with an organic raw food diet.