Go Local

One way to get fresher and more nutritious produce is to shop locally. Not your local grocery store :), but local farms, co-ops and farmers markets if available in your area.

Here in Arizona we're in the midst of citrus season (among other crops) and it's easy to find plentiful oranges, grapefruits, tangerines and lemons. We recently had the opportunity to visit a friend near Phoenix that grows all the above and it was a memorable visit. Our friend informed us that he fertilizes the trees with an organic compost every season and waters regularly. We tasted most of the fruit and noticed how dramatically different it was from even the organic produce at our local co-op. Fresh off the tree taste can't be duplicated.. just delicious! We went home with bags full of fresh fruits and have enjoyed them for weeks.

Our friend's dogs are also vegetarian... they eat all the fruits off the trees and any other vegetable growing in the garden. The neighboring mule 'Burrito' also enjoys the grapefruits and oranges. It's amazing how animals thrive eating what nature has to offer instead of man-made 'byproducts' and other animal products that give them 'man-made' diseases just like humans get. Coincidence?


Enjoying the tastes of local produce, I also found a nearby farm that is currently growing a mixture of green vegetables, including green onions, mixed greens, brocolli and assorted green lettuce. The tastes are equally fresher and it's a pleasure to support local farms in growing sustainable, organic and fresh fruits and vegetables. With the massive proliferation of factory farming, it's more important now than ever before to support your local farmers and keep them growing!

To find a farm or farmers market near you, visit LocalHarvest.org

To your best health!

Mark

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Raw Food Potlucks: Helpful or Harmful?

Posted on May 23rd, 2007 in food,potluck,raw by Vegan Raw Diet Advocate 2 Comments »

Are raw food potlucks helpful?

One of the first things I learned about when getting interested in raw foods was the raw food potlucks. They were recommended to me to learn more about the lifestyle, meet other raw foodists and learn new recipes.

After a few months I did learn those things; met others at all points of their journey to better health, learned new recipes, resources and lifestyle ideas.

Over the years, I made an important distinction. Long term raw foodists don't normally eat the foods brought to a raw food potluck.

Why?

I've determined that raw food potlucks are most beneficial to those new to the lifestyle, those looking to make a change for their health, making new friends or those curious and wanting to learn more.

Long term raw foodists can be helpful to those that are new and provide guidance, although do not normally eat much at the potlucks. Since many who attend are new, they create dishes that are high in fat, lack proper food combining principles or are gourmet style recipes (all of course are great once in a while). For those experienced in raw foods, this type of meal is affectionately called "combo mambo" since the food combining is not the best and there are all sorts of foods mixed together when you try a little of this and that.

I noticed after about a year that eating at potlucks was no longer pleasurable. It often brought indigestion, gas and uncomfortable feelings. You see, as you progress in eating raw foods, you start to prefer simpler meals and normally combine foods naturally. Eating a combination of different foods that are normally high in fat (nuts, pates, seeds, avocados, coconut oil, etc) and normally more than just a bite can easily upset a digestive system that has been already cleaned and prefers simpler foods.

In fact, as I now bring simpler dishes, interestingly enough, they are not as popular as the more 'gourmet' meals I once brought. Most seem to enjoy the fancier foods that resemble cooked food dishes - just with raw ingredients.

So are potlucks helpful?

Absolutely!

First, they are a great support network for those interested in learning more about better health, raw foods and recipes. Second, as you learn and become more experienced, you can be helpful to others just starting out and looking for answers. Many long term 100% raw fooders I notice don't eat much at the potlucks and spend most of the time sharing with others. I've learned to do the same, and often eat prior to attending and bring a simpler meal for others to enjoy.

You also make new friends and can build long term relationships with like-minded individuals in your area... which can be very helpful when making changes like this in your life.

You can learn more about the potlucks in your area by visiting: http://www.livingnutrition.com/potlucks.html
http://www.rawfoodnetwork.com/potlucks.html
http://www.rawfoodinfo.com/directories/dir_rawpotlucks.html

To your best health!

Mark

The Raw Lifestyle In Pictures

Posted on May 19th, 2007 in photos,raw,raw diet by Vegan Raw Diet Advocate Comments Off on The Raw Lifestyle In Pictures

Here are some pictures of living a raw lifestyle... enjoy!

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