Our idea of what constitutes "food" in American culture has become so skewed that it is almost unrecognizable. Our supermarkets are packed with products whose ingredients include unpronounceable chemicals, dyes, bacteria, and growth hormones. They are irradiated without our consent and contain GMOs.It's time to bring back FOOD. Pure unadulterated organic RAW food.This blog is a documentation of my continuing journey on a plant-based lifestyle.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Watermelon Baby Belly, Afflictions, & Creamy Dreamy Spirulina Ice-a-cream-e


I've been pounding down the watermelon lately like it's going out of style. Nine pound watermelon? No prob. And I've got the watermelon baby belly to prove it. I've been eating them everyday after yoga because it's pure sugar water and super hydrating. (Sometimes two in a row! Shhhh!)

To be honest with you, watermelon isn't even one of my favourite fruits. There's that whole "got to wait 15-30 minutes" in between eating it and anything else bit and it doesn't combine well other fruits (or anything for that matter) so you always have to eat it alone. It's kind of a pain in the bum which is why when I eat watermelon I eat watermelon.

Go hard or go home, as they say. I'm that way about everything though, so it doesn't surprise me that I'd find a way to apply this to food.

Actually, I was discussing this with Kev in the car the other day on the way to Whole Foods to get cherries. (Mmm, cherry splendidness. Cherries, dates, and figs are at an even tie for my absolute favorite of all favorite fruits. You should see how crazy I get when figs come into season. I used to buy out the little farm market store on 96th and Lex and eat figs for breakfast, lunch, and dinner. My precious figs, ::le sigh::) Sometimes I think it is a serious personality default (this all or nothingness) because it prevents me from understanding/relating to people, especially since it makes its way into so many areas of my life.

For example, with Bikram. I've watched people walk out right before the last pose - which mind you is on the floor. Why would you spend 85 minutes in a hot, humid room with 30+ other sweating people just to walk out before the end? It's mind boggling to me! I mean, I understand people sitting out poses as we've all been there. Bikram never gets easier no matter what anyone tells you. As someone who goes everyday, it's no walk in the park just because you are consistent. There are some days that room feels like it's on fire and I'm seriously so nauseous I'm positive I'm going to vomit or I'm so thirsty that I don't think I can last another second...but, I do. You always do, because 99% of it is mental.

I have such a low tolerance for pain and being uncomfortable that the only thing that keeps running through my head is, "If I can do it, anybody can." The concept of putting forth that much effort to just give up at the end just seems crazy. I mean, right?

And then there is the more serious aspect to this personality affliction of mine which applies entirely to food. I'm the type of person where if I find out something is bad for me and there is enough evidence to back it up, then I'm done with it forever and cut it out immediately. (There's a replacement for everything anyway...) I can't understand how other people don't do the same (do you seem my problem here...)

For example, rewind three years. I'm on my way to class and there is a little yellow flier stuck to the wall outside the elevator in the EL Building of New School. "Splenda tested on rats...processed with arsenic..etc." Silently, I shrieked in horror since this was my drug "sugar replacement" of choice at the time. From coffee, to splenda cheesecakes (pre-vegan days), to grapefruit. Sometimes I used to just dip the spoon in the bag and eat it like fluffy white snowflakes of tumor-inducing goodness! ::points:: Splenda-holic right here.

After that, I ditched the Splenda. Threw it all away. Haven't had it since.

The same thing happened when I was slathering up an apple with good old conventional Jiff peanut butter (who claims to be so natural) and my dear friend Martin was like, "That has partially-hydrogenated oil, a trans fat that's pretty horrible for you." You know when someone who can pack away some serious junk food tells you there's something deathly in your food, you had better stop eating it.

Little did I know, P.H.O., was in just about everything I was eating..yogurt, dressings, my freaking PB...along with high-fructose corn syrup...interesting..

Further research proved Martin right and I cut out both immediately. Which meant finding an entire new way of eating (yay veganism!) since both are basically staples of conventional American 'cuisine'. And, of course, becoming a compulsive label checker. (Like did you did you know Tofutti, the company that makes those vegan cream cheeses and ice cream bars and all that good stuff, yeah, their products contain partially-hydrogenated oils too! I mean honestly, they are sold in health food stores everywhere! Wouldn't have known that unless I read the label...)

I guess what I am really saying is that I cannot, for the life of me, understand how people can continue living in ignorance when they know how bad something is for them. I mean, I know this is entirely irrational, but it honestly makes me so angry. And this anger comes wholly from a place of concern and love because I just want everyone to be healthy, happy, and live a long time. The pharmaceutical dependency in this country and reliance on conventional doctors to just prescribe and right all our wrongs is devastating.

Have you ever noticed how everyone who eats like crap has some sort of ailment or disease? They are always complaining about something: my shoulder, my back, I've got this cancer and so and so just died of that cancer, I'm fat, I've got diabetes, allergies, etc. It never ends.  Honestly, what did you expect after years of abusing your body? I have a hard time feeling any sort of sympathy for people who make bad choices and refuse to correct them.

I know this seems rather bitchy, but think of this as the "Skinny Bitch" or Gillian McKieth's "You Are What You Eat" approach to life and healing the body. I feel like I can say all this because I'VE BEEN THERE. I've had the migraines, sinus infections three times a year, chronic strep throat, digestive problems galore, the list goes on forever...I know what it is like to not be able to lose the weight and feel like crapola all the time. Up until a few years ago, I was that person. And then I found out all these little tidbits of information, changed my habits accordingly, and now I feel excellent.

As Ann Wigmore so candidly wrote, "Why Suffer?"

And this has nothing to do with raw vs. cooked or even vegan vs. omnivore. It's more of the Matt Monarch philosophy: it isn't what you put into your diet, but what you take out. Raw food is a personal choice. Same goes for veganism. And neither of these are strict requirements to being "healthy". If people simply switched to Organics and cut out the shitzel their health would improve ten-fold.

You cannot even cry "taste" here. Health food has comes leaps and bounds since its granola-only days where it's all carrot sticks and celery. I'm a serious food nerd (duh)...like to the point where I dream about food and eating it and how good it tastes. I'm all about flavor biatches! And while I may be able to suck it up and take one for the team by drinking cups of Vitamineral Green alone for greens-on-the-road sake, I'm not the type to just eat food just because it's "healthy". I love food too much to let that happen.

Kevin says I just have an over abundance of will power and that's why it is so easy for me to give up things once I discover how bad they really are. But, I don't think that's necessarily the case. I wasn't always this way. (Like Splenda I had quite the attachment to non-dairy creamer and it's assorted flavors even though my Mim used to plead with me to ditch it because it was nothing more than powdered chemicals. I ignored her for the longest time.) Now, I feel like it's just common sense: how can something with an ingredient list the size of Texas be good for you? Or ingredients that you cannot pronounce or identify as a real food? Does the light bulb not go off?

Maybe 10 or 15 years ago ignorance could be justified, but there is far too much information available today to allow this "blissfully unaware" excuse to be rationalized.

A lot of the time I find myself wondering whether I am simply far too jaded...have I seen to many Food Inc.'s? And read to many Michael Pollan books and Organic Consumer Association Newsletters??

Either way, I know I've got to find some way to let it go because I can only do so much. I'm really not a confrontational person, so peacefully educating people I suppose is the best way to go...
In other, happier news, the countdown to the release of Twilight Saga: Eclipse has begun! I saw the first billboard last week!! I'm marking down the days on my Edward calender! Seriously, I'm going all out in my Twilight gear. I know, so nerdly..

And thanks to my glorious blendtec I've been making this scrumptilly ice cream number every night. It's thick, icy, and the perfect nightly treat. I can't get enough of it!


Spirulina Dream Ice Cream



P.S. Thanks for listening to my rant. I've been mulling over these thoughts for quite some time now and it feels very good to get it off my chest.