The Importance of Investing in Yourself & Your Health Without Giving Up

Investments. We all make them. We invest time, money, and attention every day.

That TV show you spent 20 hours of your life watching? That was an investment of your time and attention.

That new coat, those new boots, and your car. Those are monetary investments.

Every day we are called to make investments. But how many of these investments are for your health?

Are you investing in your health?
Photo by Michael

In an attempt to save money and stay on budget you might be scrimping on the one investment that could affect them all. Your health.

Investing in Yourself

I’ve noticed that every time my life started to “take off” and feel really magickal was when I invested in myself.

One of my earliest investments was in taking Tae Kwon Do lessons. My parents footed this investment, yet it is still repaying us today. In fact, it could save my life were I ever in a tough spot and needed to defend myself.

Another really life changing investment was attending University. I paid for all of my college education myself, save for the first year that my parents covered. College taught me so much about software, the working life, and what I wanted to do with my own life.

Other investments that have had a huge impact on me are getting a coach, attending raw food lectures, attending seminars, and buying books about raw food. I’ve also invested in kitchen tools like the vitamix, and a dehydrator.

None of these investments were necessary. I could have easily gone on living my life without any of these additions. But I am who I am today because of them.

Other important investments I make every day: eating high raw, exercising, sleeping enough, thinking good thoughts, and spending quality time with the people I love. These are all investments of time and attention too. (And sometimes willpower!)

Investing in Your Health Without Giving Up

One trap that I used to fall into when it came to “investing in myself” was giving up my power.

This happened mainly when I gave my power to authorities and “experts” like doctors, dermatologists, and pharmaceutical companies. (Who all seem to have their own vested interest in giving me certain types of advice. Funny, that.)

I was essentially accepting everything they told me as gospel, without doing my own research. Actually I started taking the birth control pill because I didn’t know about the alternatives to achieve clearer skin.

I definitely encourage you to do your research and take back that power of choice. You have choices, you have alternatives, you just need to learn more about them.

What have you done to invest in yourself lately?

I’m really curious to know what you have done or are doing to invest in yourself. It can be health investments in the form of education, training, exercise, what ever it is for you.

Leave a comment below!
Love, Nathalie

Holistic Healing Approach: Heal Yourself With Raw Food

Last night I attended a group healing session here in Toronto. The session was called “A night with intention”, and was facilitated by a man with over 10 years experience with energetic healing.

The topics we discussed really got me thinking. First of all, I truly believe that each of us has the ability to heal ourselves.

How else can the body know what to send to heal a paper cut? Why should it be different for cancer, or heart disease?

If you came to raw foods for healing or weight loss, then trust in your body’s ability to return to a whole balanced place.

Raw Food is Only Part of the Healing Puzzle

One thing I’ve really been pondering on a lot lately is the realization that raw food is just a tool. For some cases using raw food to heal yourself is the best choice. In others, maybe a different approach might work better.

I’m not a fan of conventional Western medicine and the emphasis on the quick-fix pill-popping “solutions” it provides. But if I get hit by a bus, send me to the emergency room – don’t try to heal me with raw food or an energetic healing technique.

There’s a time and a place for each of the healing tools we have available to us.

Similarly, there’s something to be said about the placebo effect. If the placebo effect operates in 1/3 of all healing cases, then why don’t we learn more about this miraculous possibility? If I can heal someone just by placing my hands on them, or by jumping on one leg and waving a magick gourd… then why wouldn’t I do it?

Health Promoting Environments

Disease and illness happens over time, it rarely just appears out of nowhere. That’s why I believe that the environment in which we live is just as important as the food we eat.

For example, if you live in a very toxic and mentally damaging environment you’re not likely to feel your best.

Create a safe healing sanctuary for yourself with your favorite plants, relaxing music, comforting smells, and maybe a cushy blanket or pillow.

If there are unsupportive people who bring you down, find a way to let them know their treatment is not welcome or distance yourself from them. This is tough, but sometimes necessary.

Healing Thoughts

This is something that Jonathan Mead and I talked about in our Raw Food Q&A Call. Jonathan said something that really zeros in on one of the biggest pieces of the healthy living puzzle.

“It’s better to be eating something that’s not raw and feeling good about it, than to be begrudgingly eating something raw but feeling horrible.”

This works both ways, if you beat yourself up when you “fall off the wagon” of eating raw foods, you’re inflicting more pain and stress on yourself than the non-raw foods themselves might be.

The thoughts you think and the feelings you feel play such a huge part in the healing process.

If your thoughts and feelings aren’t supporting your healing efforts, it might be time to change your habits or find a practice that takes you out of your head space.

Healing with Raw Foods

I don’t think there’s one right way to go about healing yourself. For me, eating more raw food has been the first step on a journey of whole body and mind healing.

For you, raw food might be step one or step three, it doesn’t really matter. Find what works for you, and go from there.

All I know is that raw food has been instrumental in healing myself and those around me.

What has been instrumental in your personal healing journey?

Love, Nathalie

Healthy Desserts: 28 Healthy Dessert Recipes in the Raw

In my article on healthy foods vs. unhealthy foods I mentioned that there are certain foods that we all agree to be healthy. Desserts tend to fall in the unhealthy food category.

kiwi-colorful
Photo by Klaus Post

Somehow we inherently know that eating too many desserts and sweets is not good for us. Either we’ve been told this growing up, or we just don’t feel so good after we overindulge our sweet tooth.

Why do we crave sweets and desserts?

Since I’ve got a wicked sweet tooth, I thought it would be interesting to investigate why it is that we crave sweets and desserts. (Or at least some of us.)

Sweetness is an Indication that Food is Edible

I was speaking to my dad about this the other day and he mentioned reading an article about sweets that said sugar is an indication that food is not a poison.

This made sense to me, if something tastes sweet then it is probably safe to eat. Think of eating bitter unripe fruit, you immediately get a bad taste in your mouth and push it away. However if the fruit is ripe, it is sweet and edible.

I’m sure this doesn’t apply across the board, and that there are exceptions to this rule. But I can accept the fact that we use our taste-buds and the sweetness factor of a food to determine whether to eat it or not.

The Bacteria/Yeast Connection

Another reason I believe we are big on eating sugar and sweets is the connection between bacteria and yeast. I don’t want to get too deep into this topic, but I have observed it in my own body.

At one point the balance of beneficial bacteria in my gut had been broken and there was an overgrowth of yeast. I’m not talking about female yeast infections here, because anyone can have too much yeast and not enough beneficial bacteria.

I noticed that whenever I ate lots of sugar, I had a huge rash on my stomach. That was the yeast flourishing. Yuck much? Luckily, I knew there were alternatives to traditionally high sugar sweets and desserts.

Can Healthy Desserts Really Exist?

The short answer is yes! Why else would I “give up” my old favorites, if I couldn’t have something equally delicious?

Healthy Desserts That Taste Good

Healthy desserts get a bad rap. Think of desserts made without any sugar, and these seem bland, granola, a little boring.

But what if you could get the richest, most decadent of desserts without all the junk that most processed desserts come with? It’s totally possible with raw, naturally sweetened desserts.

A Healthy Dessert Doesn’t Mean Just Fruit

28 Desserts You Can Eat Every Day

Okay, you might be thinking that the only thing raw foodies can eat for dessert is fruit. Fortunately, there’s a lot more to raw desserts than fruit.

Take a look at these:

  • raw chocolate puddings
  • raw apple pies
  • raw fudge
  • raw ice cream
  • raw cup cakes
  • raw brownies

28 Desserts You Can Eat Every Day

I’ve put together free a downloadable ebook called “28 Desserts You Can Eat Every Day”. Yep, that’s right I’m giving it away for free!

Grab your free copy of the 28 Desserts You Can Eat Every Day ebook now.

Feel free to share this ebook with all of your friends and family. I really want as many people as possible to experience these healthy desserts.

Because it’s time for us have our cake and eat it too. After all, health is wealth and what would our life be without a little treat now and then?

Get your dessert fix here.

Love, Nathalie

Healthy Foods vs. Unhealthy Foods

healthy-foods
Photo by Gordana A. M.

One of the reasons people turn to raw food is because they are looking to eat more healthy food. That’s definitely one of my main reasons for giving raw food a try. (Remember that when I say raw food, I don’t necessarily mean 100% raw.)

Lately, I found myself giving out this little piece of advice: eating raw food doesn’t mean it’s necessarily healthier than other ways of eating.

Hear me out…

There are a lot of other things that go into your health, other than just the “label” you apply to your food. Maintaining healthy diets, for most of us can be tricky. So for instance, you might be eating raw food, but eating too much of it. Or you might be eating raw food, but eating too much of one category and not enough of another.

Neither of these scenarios is very healthy.

Or, you might be eating raw food but not drinking enough water, sleeping enough, or exercising enough. And then there’s your emotional and mental well being, all of which play into your overall health.

Now, let’s take a closer look at what healthy foods are.

The Healthy Foods List

Here is a basic list of healthy foods that most people can agree on:

  • Fresh fruits and vegetables
  • Fresh leafy greens
  • Cold pressed extra virgin oils
  • Raw nuts and seeds
  • Sprouts
  • Seaweeds and sea vegetables

Now we can split hairs and argue that we should include other foods, depending on what lifestyle you follow. For instance some may want to add superfoods, others may want to add in raw dairy or meat, you get the idea.

But I think we can all agree that these are basically healthy foods. Especially fresh fruits and vegetables.

The Unhealthy Foods List

  • Processed “white” foods like white breads, white pastas, etc.
  • Refined white sugar, high fructose corn syrup, aspartame
  • Addictive substances like MSG, and other “taste enhancing” chemicals
  • Processed, denatured fats and oils that the body cannot deal with

Alright, so the unhealthy foods list is incomplete. That’s partly because it would take too long to include everything that might potentially be unhealthy. But it’s also because we don’t all agree on what’s unhealthy.

Some people go around telling themselves that they’ll be healthy if they eat “Everything in Moderation“. And while the adage that eating everything in moderation probably held true 100 years ago, it certainly doesn’t hold today.

There are more chemicals and ingredients that I can’t pronounce on a label for dried raisins than ever before. Dried raisins!

Imagine what’s in super processed junk foods for a minute. It’s not pretty.

How to Include More Healthy Foods and Less Unhealthy Foods

I honestly believe that in order to eat more healthy foods we need to leave some of the unhealthy foods behind. If you’re too full from eating an entire bag of chips and a 1L bottle of Coke, then you’re not going to be inspired to eat an apple. Let alone a salad.

Letting go of foods that aren’t good for you is a lot more complex than it might seem at first. Why? Cravings. That’s why.

I’ve been eating healthy foods for over 3 years now, and I’ve learned a thing or two about cravings. Get on The Cue list, and you’ll be the first know about my cravings busting techniques.

Love, Nathalie

President Obama’s Call for Caring Healthcare and Taking Responsibility

I don’t write a lot of political posts here, but this speech made by President Obama to the American Medical Association was just too good to pass up.

President Obama is calling for a health care reform, but it goes much deeper than that. This quote really brings home a crucial aspect of a healthy nation, and a healthy people.

“It also means cutting down on all the junk food that is fueling an epidemic of obesity, putting far too many Americans, young and old, at greater risk of costly, chronic conditions.

That’s a lesson Michelle and I have tried to instill in our daughters with the White House vegetable garden that Michelle planted.

And that’s a lesson that we should work with local school districts to incorporate into their school lunch programs.”

I think we should definitely work with local school districts to incorporate healthy diet changes, but also look to office cafeterias, hospitals, prisons, and other semi-public places.

This is a time for change, and we’re in this together. Let’s brainstorm some ways that we can implement these changes into our own homes and neighborhoods.