Friday, February 26, 2010

Dustin Kellogg Interview Part II - "Surrendering Completely To Imagination, Creativity & Creation!"

Q: I've always heard cannabis makes people have the munchies!! It seems to have had the opposite effect on you!

A: There is a bunch of info coming out about the healing effects of cannabis... I would like to help get this info out along with raw food.

Q: Something you said in your interview really made a huge impression on me about being "blocked" artistically. I've always believed that one of the keys to overcoming my addictive needs for food would be to be flowing artistically and creatively. I see very much that you and meredith are fully FLOWING!!! Talk to me about this.

A: When Meredith and I got together about five or so years ago, it wasn't easy at first. We moved-in together after dating for 4 months and we had a lot to learn about each other. She had just left 'Fashion School' and she wasn't doing anything creative. She would just work and then sit around like a lump and usually give me some sort of guff about what I was doing. I finally had to tell her to "start being creative!"... I told her that she was a creative person by nature, most of us are (I would say we all are, in some form), but I said "you're a creative person and you're not creating... instead you're worrying about what I'm doing all the time"... it was driving me a little crazy at the time, but I loved this girl... so I shot it to her straight. A couple weeks later she started sewing and then started making cookies, cakes and all sort of yummy treats and she was transforming before my eyes. What has saved my life, Meredith's life and our Relationship is surrendering, completely, to Imagination, Creativity and Creation... I think these are the foundational forces of all living things. When we create we are in the flow... and it can be cosmic... we realize it's our purpose, "why we are here" and I see that you are a fellow creative as well. This life is really magical, it's really special and we are all Divine Beings... no bullshit. Forget religious rhetoric and fluffy nansy-pamsy talk... I'm talking about brass-tax... we are DIVINE.

Q: Fear and self-doubt have stopped me from pursuing a professional singing career. Fear i'm too old, fear i'm too fat, fear i'm not good enough. Talk to me about fear.

A: We have to face the fear, at some point or another, that we are Divine, God-Like Beings. That we are capable of soooooooooo much more than what we are exhibiting. And I don't want to get down on humanity but we are not supposed to live the way we are living... we are destroying ourselves. We are soooo not the fat, lazy, ignorant, unmotivated, unmoving, individuals that we all pretend to be. I believe what happens is that either our Parents, or our Society, most of the time both, fuck us up so bad that we think that we aren't worth it... we think no one loves us and that we are alone. This just isn't the case.

Q: Wow, this really reminds me of that saying attributed to Nelson Mandella...that we are afraid of our own divine light...and NOT that we are weak....but POWERFUL beyond our wildest imagination. I also heard someone say that each of us is this huge sparkling diamond. But we've allowed the diamond to be caked over with shit. And then we put nailpolish on the caked on shit. Instead we have to KNOW we are the diamond and get rid of the shit.

A: Even if we were locked up in the darkest cave, in the most remote part of this planet, we are never alone... and we are always worth it. The sooner I realized that, the sooner I could allow myself to heal. And the crazy thing is it's only been a Year and Three months... and so many things have happened and changed.

Q: On another topic, how do you deal with cravings?
One thing that kept me going through the cravings, is that one time I asked you "Michelle, have you eaten cooked food since you went Raw, two years ago?" You gave me this funny look like I was out of my mind and then you said "No, why would I do that?"... I can honestly say that there have been times when I wanted to take, since being Raw, bacon cheese burgers and deep fry them... stuff them inside an "everything" pizza, and deep-fry that, with a side of large fries (with mounds of ketchup and vinegar) and a super-sized cherry coke and just go to town... but then I think back to the response you said "... why would I do that?"... and I always get through the craving.

Q: Wow, i'm honored that i had an impact on you about staying raw, now that i've been struggling myself! Now that i've been to the other side and have had the fried onion rings and the fried eggrolls, i'll say, it's definitely NOT worth it. You have PURE RAW JOY! And fried food doesn't offer any joy! Well, maybe a very temporary one. But, it's like heroin. It leaves you only wanting more and more. At the expense of your entire life. I don't know why i ever gave in. I'm sorry i did. I'd much RATHER have stayed raw. These last months have been full of struggle and lots of steps backwards. It wasn't worth it. I hope i can influence you again in knowing that you don't want to go there....!

I say that Raw food is easy and it is effortless, which it really is, but there are times when I just crave the worst food ever... and I just put myself back to that time when I ate that food... it's not worth it... it's poison... it really is fucking poison. I wish it wasn't because I love food. I love smelling it. I love tasting it. I love it. I want to eat it all. But my body doesn't want me to and it feels so much better to listen to my body.

Q: I was also really strongly impacted by what you said about you telling yourself 'I weigh 200lbs' and then a year later, you did. I forget so often to apply what I know about the law of attraction. People with cancer can cure themselves by just thinking about being healthy. So why can't i think myself thin like you and Tim Arnold have done????!!!! I'm a strong person, but I don't act like it often, and get to a place where i feel so utterly helpless, especially when it comes to being caught up in cooked food. I need to put so much more time and effort into thinking about what i WANT and in manifesting my desires and dreams, because I know that if I put energy there, things will begin to happen. Talk to me more about this.

A: And I totally see you as an opera singer, you are amazing and you know it! Now start acting like it!!! hahaha... and you know you can take it as far as you want to take it. I see you as being anything you want... really. You have so much life and you have a deep, deep story to tell... you have so much to express, so much to tell the world. And you have the best thing going for you... you are super-honest person... some may say a little tooo-honest, but fuck those people, we need more honest people these days. Hahaha.

Q: Also, what shone forth in the interveiw through all of the technical diet questions is that you direct yourself....and believe your desires for food...are GOOD! You have totally inspired ME to commit to getting more in touch with who I really am, honoring what I really like, honoring my music and art and pursuing it more, falling in love again with raw food and not seeing it as bad or dangerous or fattening...and believing what i'm doing is good. When i first went raw, i 'believed' gourmet was GREAT for me, healing me, and it did! I lost 140 lbs eating gourmet raw. I know i can do it again! I can learn to trust myself and allow my 'best' highest self to lead me.

A: I remember the night that really turned things for me with the "raw-thing". It was my third night RAW and I was lying in bed, completely freaking out staring up at the ceiling. I knew that this was "real" and that in a very short while I was going to be skinny. I was freaking out because I was scared not to be "big" or "fat". I had accepted this about myself and even though I wasn't "really" comfortable with being overweight, I had tricked myself into thinking that I was fat and that's the way it was going to be. What would people think if I wasn't fat? Would they think I was weird? Would they think I wasn't me? Everyone knew me as Dustin "THE BIG GUY". That night, I faced my self and I let the fat kid go... I cried a bunch... fell asleep and when I woke up the next morning, It was On!! I knew after that night, there was no looking back. I knew that I had to lose weight and heal myself and I knew that I was going to do it.

Q: Thank you so much for your empowering viewpoint, for your honesty and your strength! Any last words?

A: Michele, stay strong... listen to your heart and your body and let them guide you... no one else. ::)



"Om Eim Saraswatyei Swaha!"

xoxox michelle joy

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

DUSTIN KELLOGG: 110lbs lighter! "You Are Beautiful. You Are Not What People Have Told you You Are...You Are Not The Fat...Love Yourself!"

Dustin Kellogg is an amazing man! That skinny hot guy is my good friend Meredith Frantz's husband. [You remember Meredith from her website, which i've mentioned frequently here:]

Dustin and i met for the first time at Arnold's Way and we knew immediately that we were kindred spirits! Dustin and Meredith were pretty new to raw at the time, and had just discovered Arnold's Way, and had just taken a bite of some kind of special raw sushi roll i made for them, when their eyes just lit up, they started giggling, and they exclaimed, "Oh, my god! This is sooooo good!"

Since that time, Meredith and Dustin and I have shared several blissful times making raw food together, every bite inducing orgasmic responses from all of us.

[My catering partner, Susan, and I like to say about people who react so strongly to food like us, "They're ONE OF US...!" and then we smile and roll our eyes...!] Dustin and Meredith are DEFINITELY one of us....foodies who LOVE food.

What's so amazing is that Dustin got SKINNY doing just that! Whereas I turned from gourmet raw, and from raw in general, thinking i was helping myself (only to get fatter), Dustin has stood the course...and became one of my poster children for gourmet raw. He eats what he wants...and gets to be skinny! I HAD to find out his secret because since the time of our first meeting, Dustin has just transformed before my eyes. He's lost over 100 lbs in under a year and quite literally does NOT look like the same person!

Dustin agreed to share his thoughts, guiding forces, his beliefs, and his routines with us. Thank you, Dustin!!

What you will find is an exceedingly honest and open look at a man filled with spirit, love, wisdom, creativity, who will just inspire you to learn to listen to yourself...and guide he does!

This interview is long on technical diet questions, but Part II is coming next, which will reveal more about Dustin's attitudes about creativity and the creative force that has forever changed his and his wife's world. For those of you that don't know, Dustin is an amazing professional graphic artist and tattoo artist. He and his wife recently moved to Boulder, CO, where they are thriving professionally, and in their raw life together.

You can read more about Dustin and see his work on his website: or on his blog: Dustin's email is below at the end of the interview.

~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~

Hey Michelle! Here are the answers to the questions.

Q: How long have you been eating raw and how much weight have you lost?
I have been eating 'Raw' since November of 2008, so that would be a Year and 3 months. I have lost 110 Pounds. (Starting Weight: 285/290 Current Weight: 172)

Q: Do you eat 100% raw? Why? or Why not?
I eat 100% Organic (Most of the time) Raw Plant-Based Diet (No raw sushi, No raw meat). I eat this way because it's what spoke to me and it seems to be really work well. I will note that I say 100% but I'm not a stickler... like I eat mustard every once in a while, and ketchup (I try to use the highest quality I can). I also eat agave which may or may not be Raw, depends on the source and I drink Hot Tea. I also ingest substantial quantities of cannabis, which I will smoke... some may say I am not a truly 100% Raw, but this doesn't really bother me because I don't really like labels as much.

Q: Why did you go raw? Describe.
I struggled with weight my whole life. I was sick of being depressed, over-weight, and pretty much everything that I thought I knew is backwards... so I was tired of being confused and I was tired of suffering. I heard about liberation, freedom and enlightenment but every where I turned I just saw more systems of slavery... and not just physical slavery; Spiritual, Mental, Emotional and Physical Slavery. The Raw Food Lifestyle, to me, seemed like Freedom it smelled of Truth. I had very little knowledge of "Raw Food" but I knew that it would help liberate me and I could finally be who I am.

Q: How important are the role of enzymes and optimal nutrition to you?
Obviously, Enzymes are super important in the functioning of our digestive system and I think the more clear/clean and understanding We are (in our essence), the purer our cells will become, thus creating more substantial enzymatic connections... for the "science" I will defer to people who know more about Enzymes (David Wolfe, Gabriel Cousens, Daniel Vitalis, Angela and Matt Monarch).

"Optimal Nutrition" to me is not just about what we eat... Optimal Nutrition is Ultimate Heath... combing the four corners of Creation... Spiritual, Mental, Emotional, Physical symbiosis. I am not as concerned with "Optimal" as I am with living the Dharma... or Living the Middle Path. Optimal, to me is a positive word but it seems competitive... as if I am in a "better position" than you because I eat "such and such" a way... that seems silly to me because the extremes of polarity are always fluctuating and expanding... so what is "Optimal" to One may not be to another.... I guess I would say that I am concerned with Individual Optimization... not compared to anything other than my own expression... I am a Optimal Agnostic... haha.

Q: Was losing weight your main motivation to going raw? Or was it just a wonderful byproduct of the diet?
I would be lying if I said that I didn't have fantasies of being a super-fit dude with abs and a collar bone... But I feel like my motivation came more from a place of wanting to be accepted and listened-to. I felt like I had something to say, that I had an expression to share with the World, with You... and I was held back because I thought people didn't listen to me because I was fat (a product of my individual psychosis). I know now that people don't listen because they are afraid of what they might hear. So I was motivated to lose weight because I thought if I was beautiful on the outside then people would finally be able to see the beauty on the inside. I was motivated to lose weight, I don't think anyone likes being 'over-weight'... but we get used to... we accept that we can never be anything more than "Fat", so it become comfortable. Losing weight is definitely more of a byproduct of the Raw Lifestyle, to me, because the Spiritual benefits have out-weighed (pardon the pun) the Physical benefits... although they are wholly connected.

Q: What was your attitude toward losing weight during the process? Did you give it much attention? Did you weigh frequently? Were there frustrations with your progress, or was your attitude easy going and full of gratitude? Describe.
Okay, I'm going to be super-honest here... I have very little choice in honesty these days... so Losing Weight Blew My Fucking Mind (excuse the language, it was just that intense). A month after I went "Raw" I got in a really bad Bike accident and I sprained both of my elbows. My left elbow couldn't move past a 45 degree angle for over 3 months. In the first 3 - 4 months, I lost 50 pounds... I was literally shedding the weight.. every day I woke up, I had lost weight, literally!!! And for the first 4 months of being "Raw" I sat on my couch, and ingested high-quantities of Cannabis... and I watched a lot of internet television. But my mind was blown because I lost 50 pounds and all I did was sit on a couch, smoke weed, and eat the most amazing food on the planet... although I couldn't move my arms for three months... I couldn't believe the transformation. I have completely lost any sense of physical identity... Now, I have very little self-consciousness (in terms of physical negativity). I have had people tell me I look great, or that I am beautiful, and although this is waaaay better than being ridiculed for being "fat", I don't even care how other people see me... and not in a negative aloof kind of way, but I just don't trust other people's sight these days... I listen and take it into account but my physical appearance is more fun to me these days, I take it less seriously. I am finding that I can have more fun with my body then I ever thought I could.

I would also like to add, and I think this is integral to the Raw Psychological Transformation, that can occur. I watched the show "The Biggest Loser" while I was losing all of the weight... and is was uncannily synchronistic that the characters on the show were losing the same amount of weight that I was losing... so rapidly... watching their transformation helped me understand mine. To be honest I think the show is a little backwards in it's understanding and commercialism but what the People go through on the show is Real... and it gave me incredible insight into the nature of Food Addiction, Suppressed Emotions and Psychosis. I cried a lot, and I still do. I cry now more than I have ever cried in my life... it feels so real and I feel so alive to finally let the emotions out. I saw, not only on the show, but in my Non-Reality-Television Waking State, that all my weight was actually a physical manifestation of Emotional blockages, which is actually "Stuck Energy"... when we remove the Stuckness, we allow the energy to flow freely, so the "Weight" will not gather on the body... it's flowing.

I am extremely grateful... every day... and I would say that my attitude was and is more of an " in-Awe" than anything else.

Q: Did the law of attraction, or a positive mental attitude figure into your weight loss? Please describe!
I think it's apparent that the Law of Attraction is built into the Fabric of Our Consciousness... the law of attraction, to me, is a mathematical foundation for the form of our individual/collective reality. I think it played a huge role. One thing that I didn't share above is that when I was 285 or so, I got on the treadmill ( about a year before I went Raw) and I would just repeat while I ran: "I'm 200 pounds, I'm Happy, and I'm Healthy"... less than a year later all of my dreams had come true and so much more. I think Mantra is a integral part of the Law Of Attraction... if we want something we ask for it, and then we do everything in our power to receive it. I do not put "faith" in the Law of Attraction... I grab it by the horns and I rangle it to the ground.

Q: Do you feel like weight loss has been a spiritual gift? A manifestation of a right spirit? Or is weight loss a practical matter of what and how much you eat?
I think I answered this question above but I can elaborate. I think one can be Enlightened and not a Raw Foodist... but I see that our Diet, what we eat, is what we Are.... I think "Spiritual" is a weird word because it kind of implies a Hierarchy to some people... but when I say Spiritual, I mean a connection to all that Is... no Gods, no Goddesses, no Rules, No Dogma, No Bullshit. Each individual's spirituality can be different from another's but we can understand each other a bit more by connecting our Spirituality into Cosmic Consciousness, then Divine Consciousness, then we become all that Is... all that I Am... Spirit. Weight-loss, for me, was a physical gift... Raw Food was the spiritual gift.

Q: How would you describe your diet? Gourmet raw? Simple Raw? 80-10-10? What does that mean to you?
If I had to label it (I just have a hard time with labels, I'm working on though, trying to have more fun), I would say I am a Mystically RAW Anarchist... I follow my intuition and I have a handful of people that I turn to in times of confusion. I am open to all Forms of all Lifestyles, if they bring about the desired results, i.e whatever we want. I think the labels and categories that what we put on Raw Food are Silly... to be honest.... like Vegan, and Vegetarian even Raw Foodist implies separation maybe even hierarchy. I try to eat what is best for me ... I tend to drink a lot of fruit/superfood smoothies. I drink Green Juices (all shapes and sizes) and of course Meredith makes the most amazing "Gourmet" Raw food... so I eat that a lot as well. I eat a lot of Cacao.

I think humans tend to make more chaos out of not only Raw Food, but Life in general because we like the Drama... without the drama things seem boring... but when we learn to silence the mind and bathe in Consciousness, nothing is boring, no thing is mundane... Everything is a Miracle... I use words, labels, concepts and abstracts as pointers to truth... to healthy living... but words, labels, concepts and abstracts are Nothing if they don't point us to Everything.

I also smoke and eat Cannabis ( I prefer to eat it, because I cough a lot less but I love smoking as well... I think Smoke is bridge between the Here and the Now, so I connect to it). ... I know this a point of contention amongst the Raw Foodies, but I don't pay attention to that as much... I do what is best for Me, and the only person who knows that is Me. This may be radical for some, or maybe it seems arrogant... but Intuition is a powerful force and when we devote our selves to an expanded mode of being, we can open our selves up to trusting this intuition more and more.

I love fruit... I love vegetables... especially carrots, cucumbers and spinach. I basically eat whatever I want, when I want, and my digestion varies a bit, but overall I have remained in a relatively peaceful stage of being since going Raw. If I was being the most honest I would say that Allah created Raw Foodism for Me... as soon as I started, I had no idea what I was getting into but it just resonated with my Being... it was a serious missing piece in my development... and it has helped me move past judgments. If Our Intentions our Pure, then we could eat McDonalds everyday and become what we've always wanted to Be... it just depends on one's journey, what they need to go-through in order to see Their Divinity. It seems like we have a hard time accepting that we are Divine, instead we created Boxes, Labels, and Judgments.

Q: How big a role does fat play in your daily diet? How much fat would you say you eat a day? Describe all the fats you ate today and yesterday and the day before. Where do you get your fat from? Avocado, nuts, etc..
I love Guacamole and Avocados, and I eat them frequently... I would say 1 - 2 a day, but sometimes none... I'm more of a Smoothie kind-of-guy. I eat coconut oil... and hemp seed butter. I also eat a lot of nuts... Pistachios... Cashews... Almonds... Pine Nuts... Walnuts. But I would say Avocados are Key.

Q: Do you eat more than one avo at a time? Do you eat handfuls of nuts? Do you eat more than fat source per day? Do you keep track of this, or just let your body guide you?
Yes... Yes... Yes.... No... and I just let my body guide me.

Q: Do you intentionally try to keep the fat low, or do you use fat freely? Describe how you do this.

A: I intentionally just eat the most amazing food I can... I try not to Think about it too much... the Mind has the incredible ability of keeping us locked in patterns, so I try to operate more from a space of no-mind... but this can be difficult especially when we are trying to break out of old habits.

Q: Do you soak your nuts/seeds? Why?
Some of them... some of the time... Meredith handles most of the nut-soaking, so mostly in Gourmet, I will eat soaked nuts. They are easier on the digestion... I would definitely agree with that.

Q: What nut or seed do you use the most and why?
Pistachios... because they remind me of being a kid for some reason?

Q: Do you use olive oil daily? why or why not? If so, how much would you use on a salad?
Yes... because it tastes good, it's Raw, it's good for Salad Dressings and Sauces and such. When I first stared eating Raw I would use tons of dressing... now I use a moderate amount, I like everything coated in dressing but not soaking (like I used to).

Q: Do you eat bananas freely, or do you limit them? why?
I usually eat One banana a day in my Smoothie. I'm not into eating a lot of fruit at one time, unless it's in a smoothie. I think the most bananas I have eaten at one time... are 3 bananas... but that is when I first went Raw.

Q: Do you drink green smoothies? Describe three typical green smoothies with all ingredients. How many bananas do you put in your smoothies? Do you use dates/agave/honey as well?
Yes, I try to drink One a day, sometimes I don't, and sometimes I drink Two in a day... I call it "The Man Smoothie"... hahaha:

-20 oz. of Spring Water (or Revers Osmosis (Re-Mineralized "Avia-Clarity" and Re-Structured with "Sacred G") when we can't get spring water.)
-Bee Pollen (Two Scoops)
-Honey (As much as I want, I usually go-overboard because I love Honey)
-Ormus Greens ( Sunwarrior)
-Amazing Grass Cacao Super - Food Mix
-Coconut Oil (Scoop)
-X-tra Cacao Powder (David Wolfe's or Gnosis Chocolate)
-Maca Powder (One/Two Scoops)
-Hemp Seed Butter or Hemp Seed Oil (I love anything and everything connected to the beautiful Cannabis Flower).
-One Banana (fresh, a little browner for a sweeter taste)
-A bag of mixed Organic Tropical Fruit (365 Brand... not the best "nutritionally" but it makes the smoothie cold, and more like a Shake)

Q: What 5 things do you attribute your fantastic weight loss to?
1.) Being open to as much Information as I could handle... and it didn't matter the source or the credentials, I just listened.
2.) Shattering my Ego into a million pieces and having no desire to put them back together.
3.) Not believing the Government Lies. The Teachers' Lies. The Doctors' Lies. The Scientists Lies... and researching as much information on related matters, for my-Self and starting to trust myself.
4.) Doing What I Love (what I really love, not the "story-line" love)
5.) Self Realization

Q: Describe an entire typical day's food.
This is the day in the life of the Mystically RAW Anarchist named Dustin Kellogg... hahaha:

- I wake up and smoke some of the freshest Colorado Kind-bud I can find... or we make Raw Cacao/Cannabis Chocolates... which are amazingly amazing, and I will eat 1-3 of those a day.

- I make a Green smoothie (as stated above).

- I usually start writing, drawing, or painting... or reading something and I get wrapped up in that for hours... I try to drink water or kombucha all through the day.

- I drink 1 - 2 "High Country" Kombuchas a day... sometimes none though, I like to take breaks, Kombucha can get a bit much after a while but I love it. (JUN is better though).

- I will usually snack on some sort of Raw Cacao product throughout the day.

- I like the "Two-Moms-in-The-Raw" Granola... I think it's the Awesomeness!!

- Lydia's Crackers with Guacamole is one of my favorite meals.

- And I will eat Meredith's Raw Gourmet (when it's available, which is virutally every day when she is in the flow, but sometimes we go days without "Gourmet".)

- I will snack on some nuts here and there... and I might have a piece of fruit (This past summer, I would eat Peaches almost everyday, about 3-4). Working on the organic farm, completely changed my eating habits, I was waaaay more excited about the food I was eating... especially Strawberries... I think I was Strawberry in a past life).

- Oh! And i eat Raw cake, pie, brownies, cookies... whatevs... all day long... somedays I will have 2 pieces of cake. The other day I ate a whole small Cake... the next morning I had a huge Poop though... but I made it through... haha.

Q: Do you try to limit heavy raw desserts, heavy nut pates? Why or why not?
I'm going to answer this question with a question: Why have limitations when everything in nature is Infinite?

Q: Do you eat a lot of dehydrated food?
I eat dehydrated food on a daily basis... I wouldn't say "a lot" but I don't know what a lot is? I guess compared to Breatharian or a Liquidarian it is a lot?

Q: Do you cleanse periodly in any way? (juicing, fasting, only fruit, etc...)
I did a series of 10 colonics over a 10 week period... this changed my life ( i lost 5-10 extra pounds, my stomach skin tightened-up tremendously, my skin cleared and my digestive system balanced out)... I will continue to get "maintenance" colonics. I haven't dove into the Fasts/Cleanses and that sort of discipline yet... I'm having too much fun with Food right this minute... I figure as I develop I will probably Fast more... but I am not in a hurry... I think the benefits are astonishing though, Meredith is a Floating Bodhisattva when she is juice-feasting... And Angela Stokes-Monarch is a glowing Light Being when she juice-feasts. I honestly think women thrive the most off of juice-feasting. Green juice plays such a huge role in bringing about that refined clarity and extra-sensory perception... plus it helps to get at those demons that are buried deep.

Q: Do you have days when you eat lightly and days when you eat heavier?
Yes... it varies from day to day.... or week to week.

Q: How does eating raw food make you feel, in general? When you eat something too heavy, how do you feel? Describe.
I love Raw Food... it's fresh, it's alive, it's vibrant, it almost always makes me feel good (except when I'm a bit gassy)... but I generally Love how I feel.

Q: Do you struggle with compulsions to overeat or eat very fatty foods?
No, and I honestly can't say how or why because I weighed 285... I just think cooked-food was that poisonous to my body, it was less about "over-eating" and more about the types of food I would eat.

Q: Do you often take seconds, or do you control your portion sizes?
At potlucks I will take Thirds, maybe even Fourths... but when I'm home (which is most of the time) I usually just make a smoothie or a meal and stick to that. I will have 2 sandwiches or "Burgers" at a time... but not all the time.

Q: Do you often overeat or ever binge eat on raw?
Like I said above, to some I could "over-eat" but I never feel like I binge eat or that I can't stop myself. I have definitely eaten passed the point of hunger, to full-fill a psychological need, but this doesn't happen too often... and compared to when I ate cooked food, it's laughable.

Q: Do you meditate or do anything to control yourself while eating meals?
Raw Food is meditation to me... my life is a meditation at this point... and I don't eat food in "meals" as much... I just eat when I eat... and I am mindful of most things that I do, Raw Food has assisted with that tremendously. Life seems effortless, most of the time.

Q: Do you eat slowly...or fast? Do you chew your juice? Do you chew thoroughly?
I eat relatively slowly... if it's Gourmet I will devoir it in One Bite sometimes... but I would say I'm a moderate chewer... at times a pay more attention (depending on what I'm eating).

Q: What self controls do you use, if any are necessary?
I don't fully understand this question.

Q: Do you practice any spiritual teaching? How has this impacted your raw diet, or your health?
If I had to label my spiritual practice I would say that I am a Mystically Raw Anarchist... but I'm not a big fan of labels, and boxes, and the compartmentalization of information. I prefer autonomy... freedom... enlightenment... in whatever shape or form that takes. I try to stay as open as I can, I won't deny that it is difficult at times with all the Misinformation/Disinformation but I try to live Life from a Unity Perspective rather than a Duality Perspective (which paradoxically implies duality???).... it's a learning process.

Q: Do you juice daily? Describe.
No... but I should... This summer I was drinking juice 3 - 5 times a week. During the winter I do more smoothies.

Q: What are your favorite raw foods and how often do you eat them?
Cacao, Honey, Bee Pollen, Spirulina, All of Meredith's Gourmet food (tacos, pizzas, desserts)... I really like peaches and apples. I like carrots and spinach a lot. I really like it all, I'm not too bias. I don't like zucchini as much... and I have moments with tomatoes, but for the most part I will eat everything and anything.

Q: What is the best part of your day, foodwise?
Green Smoothie Time.

Q: Do you keep busy, occupied with work/art? How does this impact your raw diet?
I would say the main focus of my day is to do as much stuff as I love to do. I keep busy with creative work, like drawing, painting, writing, and researching. And I don't really think about food too often, unless I am contemplating how awesome it is to eat the Best Food on the Planet. Creation and Creativity are the foundations of the Universe to me... Raw Food combines Health, Nutrition, and Creation... they all seem to enhance each other, in ways that I could never imagine.

Q: Do you ever eat from boredom or stress?
I can't say that I do... because I'm rarely bored or stressed? Usually when I'm stressed I eat less.

Q: How many meals do you eat a day?
Smoothie/Snacks/Gourmet/Dessert, in no particular order and all through out the day... I don't really eat "meals" per-se.

Q: Do you have any idea how many calories you are taking in, or what percentage fat you are eating? Do you use or any other online supports to manage your diet?
A: No... I don't even know what calories are?

Q: Do you weigh yourself regularly?
When I first started, Once/Twice a week. Now.... once a every two weeks or a month... but I've been holding strong at 172-175, so I don't really need to weigh myself to know.

Q: Does your weight go up and down, or stay the same?
Answered above.

Q: Do you gain weight eating heavy raw foods?
No. I maintain it.

Q: Do you eat a lot of fruit?
Not really. Pretty Moderate.

Q: How has your raw diet changed since you've been raw? Has it gone through any transformations? Describe.
I used to eat Raw Dairy cheese, which I don't really eat anymore it just naturally stopped. I loved cheese too, it was one of my last addictions to really face. Now I can eat it every once in a while and I'm chill... but I haven't had cheese in a few months. My taste has changed, I like more Bitter things now... I like to eat something savory and then something sweet right after, where before I would go through phases of sweet and phases of savory.

Q: Are you now maintaining your weight, or still losing? Describe.
My skin is tightening up... so I think I will lose a pound or two here and there... but I've been maintaing for the past 5 months or so.

Q: Do you exercise regulaly? Daily? Or how many times a week? For what intensity and duration.
A: Before I went Raw, I exercised 4 - 6 times a week. Now.... 10 times a month... maybe? But I go to the Dry Sauna, the Steam Room, and the hot tub 3 - 5 times a week. I like to walk and ride my bike mostly.

Q: Have you been exercising the entire time of your raw weight loss?
NO... I didn't work-out for over a year... and when I finally went back to the gym I ran 3.5 miles... no problem... and I've ran a couple times since and I think if I trained a bit more I could really explore my peak performance. But I'm kind of a chiller these days... I paint/draw and research a lot... and I ride my bike and go for walks/hikes and such.

Q: How has exercise impacted your weight?
I want to eat more... but it more effects the shape of my body, rather than the weight.

Q: Do you drink alot of fluids? Has that been important in your weight loss?
Yes... I could totally see being a "Liquidarian"... in fact I kind of see that being more of my diet as I progress through this miraculous process called life.

Q: Do you use sea salt freely or try to limit salt?
Yes... I love sea salt.

Q: Do you eat any fruit you want, or try to limit fruit? Do you limit low glycemic fruits?
Whatever I want.

Q: Would you say you eat BIG portions...or small portions? Do you struggle with portion control? Explain.
- Do you stop eating when you're satisfied....or stuffed? How important is it to you to stop just when you've had enough?
- Do you eat when it's "time" or when you're hungry?
- How do you DECIDE what you will eat? Do you follow your inner guide and listen" to your bodies needs, and then make food?
I listen to my body and my needs... and I follow my Intuition. (Answer to all of the questions above.)

Q: Does a spouse or someone else prepare food for you? Do you ever want more or less?
Meredith is pretty much my personal Chef. She takes really good care of me, and usually makes sure I am well fed. I enjoy making smoothies and once I start juicing, I like juicing (just not the clean-up)... without Meredith I would be either working at Arnold's Way or Cafe Gratitude. I think it's important to be around enthusiastic people who are excited about food, especially Living Food. Sometimes I want more... very rarely do I want less.

Q: Do you ever push away your plate when there is still food on it, because you've had enough?
All the time. But I try to eat all the food on my plate, sometimes I just get full really fast.

Q: Did you always have good eating habits or bad eating habits? Explain.
I don't know what is good or bad... only what feels right.

Q: How often do you eat out in raw restaurants or at raw potlucks? Do you overeat? Or make sure NOT to?
Not often... especially in Boulder Colorado... there are no Raw Restaurants out here.

Q: Can you overeat raw food without gaining weight? Or overeat raw food and lose weight? Do you find raw food somehow "magical" in that way?
It's magical alright!

Q: What health benefits have you experienced since going raw?
I was obese, I had sinus problems, digestive problems and TMJ (Jaw Pain/discomfort) and I started to develop Migraines... ALL GONE... except my Jaw still gets a little tight sometimes. Oh yeah! And I sprained both of my elbows really really bad... and I self-healed them in 5 months, and within the year I could do 10 pull - ups.

Q: Do you eat dessert daily? (raw chocolate, raw pie, raw pudding, banana whips, etc...) Describe.
Yes.... anything and everything all day long... if I feel like it.

Q: Do you find raw gourmet food in the fridge CALLS to you? Do you try to limit what you have in the house, or do you exist freely with plenty of gourmet raw in abundance in the house? Does this make you feel safe or is this troublesome for you?
Food has less of a pull in my life... it's sounds insane because Raw Food seems "extreme" but I actually think about food a lot less... it has less of a pull in my life.

Q: Do you pack food when you go out? Describe what you might bring.
Yes... smoothies... raw granola bars... nuts... seeds... fruit.... sometimes Gourmet if we have it.

Q: Do you feel there would EVER be a reason for you to want to eat cooked food?
Yes... for the taste. Cooked food tastes amazing... I love food... and I love tasting it... I definitely miss all the Classics: burritos, enchiladas, pizza, burgers, hoagies (Oh sweet hoagies!)... I used to eat so many chicken wings... I would take down 30 - 40 chicken wings in no time. I miss salmon, and sushi... I really miss potatoes and bread. I can't say that I will "never" eat cooked food again but I think I will turn into a Being of Light before I ever, intentionally, eat cooked food again.

Q: What keeps you raw?
Being Raw is Effortless at this point. No - thing keeps me Raw. I have seen the results that it has produced... there is no denying the facts.

Q: Why do you continue to eat raw?
Because my life is so much more amazing. I have met the most amazing people. I have had the most amazing experiences. And I plan on continuing this journey of Awesomeness... most things are literally so Awe-some now, it's almost unbearable at times. Plus, I would like to contribute to the Raw Community and the Community of Humanity, by bringing a fresh perspective to Life. I want to smash walls... break down barriers and help people open their Hearts, their Minds and their Spirit. I continue to eat Raw because it's the only way to eat... if you want to Live. It's hard to eat this way in the Land of the Dead... but once you Live there is no going back.

Q: Did you diet previously before going raw?
I lost 60 pounds when I was 19, because I would work out 2 - 3 hours a day... but then I broke my thumb, got really caught up in school, and I gained all the weight back. I cut out soda and ice cream at that point but I pretty much ate the standard american diet. Then I went vegetarian for two years... but I ate more unhealthy then when I wasn't vegetarian. I was a potato and pizza vegetarian. I rarely ate fruits and vegetables.

Q: What kind of success did you have previously on conventional diets? Explain.
Answered above.

Q: How long had you been heavy before going raw?
I started gaining weight when I was around 7 or 8 years old... and I exponentially got bigger as the years went on... except for when I lost that 60 pounds... but that was for about 8 months or so.

Q: How grateful are you for the raw diet?
I say this with the upmost respect and honesty, that the Raw Food Lifestyle has saved my life. Anything I want, I can manifest... Raw Food has helped me see that... to know that. I am so grateful for all the Beings who have brought the Light to this Dark, Chaotic, Ass-backwards world. Raw Food is absolutely a solution and if harnessed and utilized correctly it could lead us into the New Earth we all desire. I fear that people will think it is a gimmick, or a "Fad" or that "Raw Foodies" are "extremists". But, I feel as if the Raw Food Lifestyle is the Dharma that the Buddha talked about 2,500 years ago. I feel as if the Gnostics, Jesus and the Essenes lived a very balanced, spiritual life with Raw Food as a major tenet in their ethos (Gospel of Thomas). But beyond the rhetoric and propaganda of Raw Food there lies a Truth. This Truth is too deep for some to experience, so they run from it because it is too foreign, or perhaps it's too real... but if you dive in and you trust the process Raw Food can help you transition and it can help you transform from a life lived by scarcity to a Life lived in Abundance.

Q: What is the biggest advice you can give to other suffers of obesity?
For those of Us who have struggled with obesity I would say this: You are beautiful. You are not what people have told you, you are... you are not the fat, you are not the pain, you are not the suppressed energy and the stuck emotions. Food is not the problem. Not facing, experiencing and expressing our emotions and our past is the problem; dealing with and healing these emotions are the Solutions. Food is a tool... it is not the means to an end. If you suffer from obesity, start to Love your self, and this does not necessarily mean standing in a mirror and lying to your - self, repeating an empty mantra of suffering. Love is doing what you Love. Doing what you Love as much as you can Love doing it and then move on to something else you Love doing. Love your food, Love your Self and try to Love those around you... the more Love energy we produce the quicker we come into alignment with our True Selves. Obesity is not a disease... it is a mindset, a mode of operation, a state of being... all it takes is a shift in Consciousness and the weight will fall off faster than you can count to One.




Thank you, Dustin,
xoxo michelle joy

Monday, February 22, 2010

Raw Foodist, TIM ARNOLD loses 100+lbs - "I will never, I mean never eat cooked food again!"

ABOVE: Tim and Leslie Arnold, with their son and two greyhounds....BEFORE RAW

BELOW: Tim and Leslie Arnold....AFTER RAW!!!! Tanned, glowing, vibrant, full of energy and LIFE!!! Leslie lost 30+ lbs and Tim lost over 100lbs!!!

Tim and Leslie are dear friends of mine, who I met at Arnold's Way. They are loyal customers and frequent lecturers at Arnold's Way.

They are also spiritual leaders in an organization called AKATHA. They lead a discussion at Arnold's Way every 2nd & 4th Tuesday at 6:30p.m. on AKATHA. You can read about AKATHA at

Tim is an international financier, who works at home presently. He is also a black belt in Karate, and practices yoga daily, and well as runs daily. Tim's athletic potential completely blossomed when he began a raw diet only one short year ago. Since then, he has run 4 marathons!

Tim was kind enough to offer his thoughts, his advice, his routines, his beliefs concerning he and his wife's strict 100% raw vegan diet in a wonderful interview here on PURE RAW JOY. Enjoy!

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A: You know me very well. The answer is very simple discipline in eating and exercise. The latter is hard for most people, but one hundred percent raw veganism provides the energy for exercise. In your situation being too busy for exercise was your problem and cooked food desire still there. But I think mainly not enough focus on patience is a problem for most and lack of inner stamina.


A: I have no desire for cooked food because sincerely it is poison like arsenic to me. I will remain 100% raw or if not, become breatharian eventually, but I will never, I mean never eat cooked food again. I think you know me well enough that I sincerely mean that.

[We were discussing a good friend of ours we'll call "Mary." Mary follows a 'mostly raw' diet. She eats 80-10-10 for the majority of her diet, and about once a month goes out for a gourmet raw meal, or a cooked vegetarian meal. She is completely at peace with this plan, but Tim has been critical of it, as well as others who do not practice a 100% raw vegan diet.] Tim, what would you say to someone like "Mary" who is not 100% raw. Is that 'bad' in your eyes?
A: "Mary" is wise beyond her age. I really like her. And my, doesn't she look good! But remember, she has youth on her side and has revealed to me that 100% is better, but she has not gotten there yet (she was for sixth months). I think [her boyfriend] is, but they don't believe in the enzyme importance theory in which that is a major one for me regarding enzyme life. Eventually, she will get back as of conceptual seeds she has within her, but we all need to support each other more - you and I lost touch and partly this was the problem - conceptual reinforcement is critical - I get that with Leslie daily and its great! - I am lucky and surely you agree having such a great support mechanism in my own home. How is Cliff doing on raw?

"Mary" and I are a little at odds because she is part of Arnold's 90% raw thing, which I think is contradictory. Essentially, it is being vegan. When I was vegan, I weighed the most ever at 280 (my fat picture). I was saddened lately finding that everyone is expecting us to fail at 100%, which stunned me at first. (That infrastructural idea did not help you either - it is important to get all this stuff out and then take the best from it and move on). Most believe that 100% is impossible to maintain, but it comes as of two comments you made in your last email, "falling off the wagon," and "awoke cravings." Remember, concepts need changing firstly.

What wagon? If raw veganism is a wagon to fall off, we need to uncreate the wagon and put ourselves on the ground - a better metaphor being grounded instead of on a wagon. I probably even said the phrase "falling off the wagon." I don't remember, but if I did that is a wrong metaphor. Also, the idea of awakening cravings shows a struggle. I say one will never maintain raw veganism until the struggle with cooked food is over. My best concept is believing thoroughly that cooked food is like eating arsenic or poison.


A: It is true if over 105 degrees, the enzyme is denatured or inactive (dies - argument on this because enzymes are crystals and not considered biological but the Andromeda Strain experiment [1960' proved crystalline procreation in a diracuum {a dirac vacuum Dr. Paul Dirac - a major genius physicist that I recommend highly - mathematically linked quantum physics with relativity] and therefore sentience exists. In my opinion, if sentience exists, life exists and therefore, an enzyme can die. Having said that, if enzymes are indeed important and most believe this especially since the whole dehydration concept revolves around it, we must do whatever we can to keep the enzyme alive. But we know that cooked food kills or makes the enzyme dormant (that is another concept of conservation being neither created nor destroyed, but if dormant it is not working and the latter is the key to this discussion - if enzymes do not work nothing catalyzes our nutrients resulting in fat on our bodies. Hence, when a man or woman gets to a certain age (40 is my parameter), they must started thinking about living.


A: You said to me once that you didn't know about living long. In other words, you hesitated about longevity. What are your feelings now about it because I believe in order to maintain raw veganism, one needs a healthy attitude about longevity. That is a must, otherwise what is the point?


Of course, other activities exist, but here it is!...

1. Wake-up

2. Contemplate (30 minute meditation-like behaviour – if meditatator, do 30 minutes; if religionist, pray closing the eyes for 30 minutes – the 30 minutes is mathematically precise regarding every five minutes gives four hours of vibrational harmony [24 hours = 30 minutes] – helps maintain the diet - important for inner stamina as a raw vegan in staying grounded not having the aphasic or "space-out" dysfunctional feeling or experience)

3. Run (6:00AM - one hour - water and carbo load station [bananas and sea salt – water [10 oz.- 138 ozs for entire day – 1 oz water for every pound] and salt [teaspoon] every 7 laps, half banana every 10 laps [25 laps 10K – 20 laps 5M]] - I run for ten days to two weeks and then take a day off - Leslie takes two days off per week) I run 10K (6.25 miles – run longer on Leslie’s days off – have run 10 + miles 70 times now in 1 ½ years – four marathons last year), Leslie runs 5 miles. We run fast at world class speeds for our ages (much faster [double] than average times – you need to come to the track with us every day – you don’t need to run at first, but I assure you running is really easy and fun – like being a kid again – raw gives us a lot of potential for running and exercise energy and stamina – we have yet begun to tap our strengths – I am trying to run under a four minute mile again – I did unofficially when I was 27).

4. Yoga (7:00 AM 2 or 3 hours - really it is power isometrics for me – but looks like yoga. I hold postures a long time (isometrics) and really cuts (definition) the muscles and gives me great strength – karate katas [karate dance with strikes incorporated] are included.

5. Breakfast Green Smoothie – 9 or 10:00 AM 32 oz. minimum every day - never miss one - albeit Hippocrates Institute disagrees, I find they do not know much about anything in my opinion. I am not a fan of Brian Clement. The Vita-mix is a must regarding pulverisation of the smoothie. Our body cells spin at much faster rates than 300mph. Thus, the Vita-mix creates an important consistency that allows the greens to assimilate in the body properly penetrating the cell walls thoroughly.

The chlorophyll makes cooked food repugnant and repulsive – too good words to keep cooked food away – I even do not like the smell insofar as I discovered the “Grim Reaper” regarding the cloying smell of cooked food is just the dying essence of it permeating in the air. If one can be so aware, a membrane of burned fragrance comes first in the aroma cloud of cooked food that hits you. This burned layer is the sickle and black cloak of the Grim Reaper who carries the death aroma as his substance smoke or cloud. Really gruesome! And these images keep one away from cooked food. If you like aromas of cooked food, just know you are smelling death like a flower’s aroma. The smell of raw food is its live aura and not its cooked essence leaving it. Quite a difference, when you understand the concept in which is very important aforementioned. Our words and their images create and carry so much power.

6. Lunch"jumble salad" and "banana rush" shake!

- Jumble salad as presumed has many things in it and varies a bit: sunflower seed pate [spreads are important for getting rid of the rabbit food image - food process 1 lb. sunflower seeds, juice of two lemons, on stalk celery, ½ onion, four garlic cloves, two red peppers (or green peppers – combo good), ¼ cup fresh dill, sea salt, and black pepper. If lemon juice is no liquid enough sometimes, add ½ oz of water], jumble salad continued: lettuce or spinach or combined, diced onion, diced tomato, diced red or green pepper or both, olive oil, diced celery, sprouts, nuts, hemp seed, diced pickles, diced beets – I might have forgotten some things - mix and cut with sharp knife in a glass bowl.- I like the diced consistency and the crunch of onions, nuts, and seeds, etc.

- Banana rush shake
– five or six frozen bananas, two tblspns of ginger, and agave if bananas are not real sweet. I am pretty consistent on lunch, but may vary regarding replacing a smoothie with the shake or changing the salad a bit. The amount is an entire serving bowl – so very substantial and really fills me up. I do not count calories because you cannot see one, but I can see ounces and measure them. I recommend sight recognition of ounces as it is very important regarding water intake and measuring in general.

7. Dinner – around 5 or 6 even 7, because I do not do circadian timing measures either. Mainly, this problem smacks of intake issues again. My theory is that timing means depravation and joy should be the raw vegan way of a golden age and not regimes of pain and austerity. I think we are all tired of that. You know you need to exercise more and that gets the weight off combined with diet.

Dinners vary and Leslie makes them. Salads, Nori wraps. Collard wraps, etc., dehydrated bread with it, banana whips, and durian for dessert

8. Snacks – any time I am hungry – eat two or three bananas because they are quick, lara bars and other one hundred percent raw snacks (awesome foods). Nightime is not an issue with me insofar as depravation is austerity and I do not believe in it. Life is hard enough without added to it. I think it could be easier if we were healthier and what better way than one hundred percent raw veganism?

I know that time is a problem especially when you see 2 or 3 hours of yoga. It means one would need to be financially independent. I am trying to retire Leslie again soon. We both were in the 90’s. I work on the computer and cell phone (I do not like the home work image as it smacks of condescension – I am very busy working my international banking business and will soon have a large institute to run).


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Before this interview, on Fri, Feb 19, 2010 at 3:39 AM, Pure Raw Joy wrote the following note to Tim. [Actually, some of it was edited afterwards to provide more clarity.] The note will help to shed some more light on my struggle with raw/cooked and on perhaps why i had so much success with gourmet raw previously....

I am so grateful to Tim for his caring, his honesty, his time, his love. A BIG hug and Kiss to him and to lovely Leslie from all of us at PURE RAW JOY!

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Howdy, Timmy,

i LOVE the pictures of you, thank you! i'm very excited about my next blog entry. it will be on you :-))

i had a talk with "Mary" today and she mentioned you had spoken with her about being very concerned about me, and dissappointed in my 'falling off the wagon.' it hurt to hear it, but i want you to know i get it, you're just concerned about me and want the best for me. you certainly look better than ever and feel better than ever and feel you have found the fountain of youth. i really get your viewpoint. i wish i didn't go off of raw in the first place. what happened was i began eating cooked beans thinking they are healthier and more digestable than nuts. i was profoundly influenced at the time by my catering partner, Susan, who is so healthy and vibrant, yet she partakes of cooked food when the mood strikes. she is able to take it or leave it. and cooked beans, being so low in fat, seemed healthier to me. whether they are or they aren't, that was my thinking at the time.

you've been a poster child for raw gourmet, for no deprivation, for just eating 'whatever you want' and reeping the benefits.

Mary mentioned you reiterated, "it's all a mindset".

I remember when i was at the raw retreat and i discovered the raw food gourmet eateries. No one told us there was anything wrong with them, that the food they served was too fatty or too heavy or too fattening. i ate the food with so much love and excitement 'knowing' and 'believing' it was GOOD for me. i didn't do this daily, but i would say up to 4x/week sometimes. i did find my weight loss slowed when i ate the gourmet meals, and i used to gain 3 lbs each time from the salt, but would quickly lose the weight once i went back to the retreat regiment and lost weekly without fail. I lost 140 lbs in 8 months eating gourmet raw FREQUENTLY!

this 'worked' for me. it felt like a dream come true. eat wisely (low fat and no salt) for the bulk of the time, and then indulge every once in a while...and STILL lose weight!!

at the time i was doing ALOT of exercise, swimming for an hour and walking about 5 miles a day.
when i began to work at arnolds, i was still in that 'honeymoon' phase of eating whatever i wanted and actually began stuffing myself daily...with all of that raw gourmet food around. surprisingly, i STILL lost weight, but very slowly.

being around food all day was a challenge i hadn't encountered at the retreat. gourmet raw was something i had to walk FAR to access at the retreat and i never took leftovers back to my condo. I ate the meal...and was supremely happy...and then i was done with it, and went back to light salt free raw eating...until the next time.

at arnold's way, food is everywhere. under the circumstances, the challenge of this, i mostly maintained my weight. pretty magical nevertheless. i was still exercising regarularly at this point, but not as much as i had been while i was away, but enough to keep the metabolism stoked.

at some point, the exercise began to die down and i began to gain weight. but now that i think back, i was eating a lot of Rita's Waterice at the time. Definitely not raw. I have to wonder if this contributed to the weight gain. I hadn't been gaining at Arnold's Way previously.

That's when i discovered 80-10-10. I turned from gourmet raw like it was 'poison' and i began to lose again by severely lowering the fat and getting rid of the salt and sustaining on mostly raw fruit.

The problem was that the minute I went off of 80-10-10, i was insatiable for fat and salt. i would binge on gourmet raw after being on 80-10-10 for a while and gain 20+ lbs back.

but as soon as i began 80-10-10 again, the weight would come right off. it wasn't an ideal situation, but i was managing.

and i managed to get down to 249 lbs this way.

when i began with the beans, i felt like, maybe this was a way to eat low fat EASIER than with nuts, and that i'd be able to lose weight easier and faster.

my intent didn't manifest. it only awoke the cravings for cooked food again and soon i was eating pizza and eggrolls and bread and butter. i gained weight so quickly. much quicker than on gourmet raw binges. and the weight didn't come off because i was hooked on cooked now.

lately i've been working with a coach on a 50% raw diet, and i lost some of the weight i gained during this pizza/eggroll time. but i'm dissappointed with the results.

plus, my elimination is not as good as when i was raw and i can't seem to lose weight like i did when i was on raw 80-10-10, even though i'm exercising more NOW than i have been in some time.

From "Mary", i understand that you think 80-10-10 is unnecessary and everyone should be able to eat anything, as long as it's raw, and still lose weight. i understand now your viewpoint. you exercise roughly 4 hours a day some days, so no wonder you can eat anything you want. Come to think of it, at the raw retreat, i also spent hours exercising. I walked, then walked more, then walked more, then i went swimming and sometimes did yoga class. this enabled me to magically take in gourmet raw and STILL lose weight. it fell OFF of me.

"Mary" and i were discussing this.

i was very intrigued by your answer of having 'discipline' when it comes to eating. and of course, you demonstrate this in your running. discipline is something i have ALWAYS struggled with, so no wonder i struggle in general. i had much more discipline in california. working in the raw cafe, it became a free for all. if i could somehow get back to that disciplined way of eating gourmet...and upped the exercise big time, but kept the bulk of my diet low fat and no salt, i think i'd be back on the path of losing. and back on the path of RAW forever. I'm really struggling with the cooked. I had a few days of raw recently and my beautiful face came back. No more swelling! But then, something happened...and i broke.

Your concept of cooked as poison has been on my mind. I'd really need to believe that again to get back on track. You can't do something unless you believe it.

anyway, this past summer when we saw each other at the movies and i looked so good i was doing 80-10-10. I did look good. and i was the lowest i had been, 250. it DID work for me as a good basis of a diet. i just need to control gourmet better. and never give into cooked again. look where it's gotten me. nowhere but fatter and more and more frustrated.

I'd like to go back to raw and to 80-10-10 because it seemed to produce really quick weight loss, but i need to have those gourmet treats. and of course, i will continue my walking program as this is crucial for me.

What i was hoping to find from you is what your daily diet looks like. I'm just very curious. What do you eat for breakfast usually? snacks? lunch? dinner? snacks at night? how many times a week do you run?

Let's keep up this dialogue.

Love to you and Leslie, xoxo michelle

Wednesday, February 17, 2010

FASTER THAN A SPEEDING BULLET!!! The Realities of Weight Loss

Okay, folks, how ya doin'?

I woke up this morning super early...with last night's phone call with Carlene on my mind.

I was dissappointed over the speed of my weight loss.

You know me, this blog is peppered with quick losses of 20 lbs in a week. I'm all about losing quickly. But then again, i realize everytime i lose it quickly...i gain it back even quicker.

So, Carlene and I discussed the realities of how fast I could lose weight doing what i'm doing (about 50% raw, very low fat, 1700 cals a day, 1 hour of walking daily).

My goal is to lose 75 lbs...and to weigh 199!!!! Wow...i'll be in the 1's!!!

I expected to be there by June. Carlene said, doing what i'm doing, it would take closer to a YEAR!

A YEAR??????!!!!!

That really got me thinkin'. Is eating cooked all it's cracked up to be? Or was i better off before?
And, how much did i ever really lose before doing 80-10-10? i want to lose those next 75 lbs only eating, basically, fruit? Or eating cooked greens and lentils?????

Before i see what i did before, i'd like a quick check on what i'm doing now.

I've been working with Carlene now for 3 weeks. Next week is our last week together,unless i renew my work with her.

Week one, i lost 13.5lbs. I went from eating fried mozzerella sticks, french fries, fried onion rings, pizza, donuts, spring rolls, Singapore rice noodles with fried a Whole Foods diet of fresh veggies, fruit, almost zero fat and salt, some lentil beans, 1/2 of my intake cooked.

Cooking veggies seems like such a 'logical' thing to do when you are attempting to go low fat. A giant plate of raw broccoli sans cashew sauce or raw mushrooms, left unmarinated, or a big bowl of spring mix without the slippery oily dressing just does NOT appeal to me. And i had tried to lose weight just eating gourmet raw moderately. Nothing happened.

Week two, i lost 4 lbs.

Week three, i lost 1.5 lbs.

That's when i started to get a little discouraged. Imagine, walking out in the blizzard, getting up to go to the mall to race walk for an hour or walk outside in the freezing cold...DAILY..., sauteeing your veggies in their own juices, bypassing the salt and oil,...and see if 1.5lbs a week is enough for YOU!!!

I know 3 people right now who have lost LARGE amounts of weight, no 4 people, eating gourmet raw. How did THEY do it...if to lose 1.5 lb, i can't even eat barely a trace of fat????

1) Dustin Kellogg - Scroll down to check out his new pic in his new courderoy's (homemade by his wife) on He is literally half of his former self and is down about 100 lbs. His wife is a gourmet raw chef, and he gets to indulge in fantastical raw gourmet food, AND lose weight? Why is God so unfair? I do know that Dustin DAILY drinks large amounts of green juices and has reported to eating food only 1-2x a day after juicing all morning. His caloric intake might very well, then, be restricted. I also know that Dustin does not binge eat like i do, and as a matter of fact, he may very well not even OVEREAT like i do.

2) Tim Arnold - Yes, Tim runs about 10 miles a day, but he also eats banana whips made with 10 bananas a night, and devours rock sea salt like it's going out of style. Tim's wife, Leslie, is a wonderful raw cook, so he is definitely NOT denying himself. Tim is down 100 lbs and looks like a completely different person from the pudgy, pale person i first met. I do know, however, that Leslie and Tim do NOT use oil on their salads at home, so it might be quite possible their diet is relatively low fat, although it is "gourmet raw," salted with seasoning. I suppose gourmet raw can run the gamut from LOW FAT to INTENSELY HIGH FAT. Leslie soaks all of her seeds and nuts and uses soaked sunflower seeds, low in fat (and cost), as the base for most of her dressings. Their diet consists of smoothies, nori wraps, salads and treats such as chia pudding, banana whips and pies. They don't overeat, i have eaten with them often.

3) Lisa Maguire - Lisa, an Arnold's Way customer, lost 75 lbs eating what she calls 'regular 4 MONTHS! It's like she just melted before our eyes. Amazing! I do know, however, that Lisa ALSO does not use oil in her raw diet, either. It's quite possible calorically she is not eating that much and her diet may not be super high fat, either. Anyway, here is an amazing video on her: that i shot at Arnold's Way. Lisa may also not be an overeater and she does not binge.

4) ME! I lost 140 lbs in 8 months incorporating MANY gourmet raw meals into a VERY low fat salt free raw diet at the raw retreat i attended for those 8 months. When i came home from O.H.I., i continued to lose weight even as i stuffed myself daily with cashew pate and raw bread, binge eating DAILY. How the heck did i accomplish THAT feat? The weight loss, however, soon stopped when i stopped exercsing regularly, and soon i was gaining weight.

I'd like to interview the top 3 people and really SEE what they eat. Wouldn't THAT be enlightening?

As for me, I only began to lose weight again on raw when i started 80-10-10. And luck would have it, that that entire history IS this blog. Hello? Am i smart or WHAT to have documented all of this?

So, how much did i lose doing an all fruit, VERY low fat, no salt diet, with some veggies? Let's see. I'm going to go back and review my blog from day one (May, 2009).

_ _ _ _ _ _

Okay, you know what? I am SO glad i've been keeping this blog. I just reviewed my blog entries from the start of this blog through all of june, when i sang at the RAW WEDDING UNION and weighed about 250.

250!!!!!! God, i looked GOOD!!!!

I had started this blog in May of 2009 weighing 277, 2 or 3 lbs more than i weigh now (how pathetic is THAT? Can you believe i got up to 293.5??? And now i'm only back to where i originally started from in May 2009??????)

In 4 weeks I lost 27 lbs eating lowfat raw/no salt.

My head is kind of spinning right now and i feel like i'm WAY NUTS for having started with the cooked food. It may be NICE to have a warm plate of spinach and lentils in the cold it REALLY WORTH IT??? The weight loss is slower. I didn't even exercise daily like i am now in the summer. I'm working HARDER for less outcome. I can't poop like i used to. Several mornings i've woken up to NOTHING, no poop. I used to poop SEVERAL times a day. Now, i'm lucky if it's once a day.

Eating low fat raw/no salt, i lost -
-15 lbs the first week (vs. now - 13.5 lbs 1/2 cooked)

-5.5 lbs the second week (vs. now - 4lbs 1/2 cooked)

-3 3/4 lb the third week (vs. now - 1.5 1/2 cooked)

-2.75 lbs the 4th week

-0 lbs lost week 5

+7.7 gain week six.....

Wooo...what happened there?? +7.7lbs?

I'm telling you it's truly amazing to read back on this blog. What happened was that at the raw wedding, i binged on gourmet raw. I don't know how i didn't manage to gain then, or i did and then lost it 80-10-10ing by the time i weighed in, but when i returned to work at Arnold's Way, i was consistently having issues with binge eating on gourmet raw.

My goal at that time switched from STAYING ON 80-10-10, to LEGALIZING gourmet raw.

Trying to "legalize" all of the salt and fat led to an almost 8 lb gain. Legalizing means trying to eat it and NOT binge. Well, i found i couldn't. i always succumbed to binge eating. It always came down to HIGH FAT AND HIGH SALT setting me off.

I never learned self control. I never learned i had better stop NOW because i wouldn't be able to stop later.

I refered to my month of 80-10-10 as "the glory days of 80-10-10" and commented "i was much better with what i was doing before."

So, pardone' moi my language, but what the fuck am i doing now???

This blog is called, "Pure Raw Joy" for a reason. Raw was a joy, a blessing. I just didn't know how to handle it. I added in cooked beans last September rationalizing that they were MUCH lower fat than cashews, and probably more digestable, too.

But, who said i had to eat cashews? Soaked sunflower seeds are low in fat.

I think i've mistakenly started to eat cooked food under the impression that i'd lose weight even FASTER than 80-10-10. But, i'm finding that's NOT the truth.

Quick Note - Bananas: The more bananas i ate, the slower i lost.

I think the blog really took a detour then for a long time and i tried to eat gourmet moderately and found i couldn't.

I'll go back and review that some other time, but what is truly amazing to me is how WELL i was doing last summer. I weighed 24 lbs LESS than i do now. God, looking back at those pictures makes me feel a little queezy in my stomach. Like, "Michelle....what are you DOING?" "What have you DONE?" Regret. Remorse.

I told Carlene, eating cooked would never have come into the picture had i not started with the beans in September. Then it was like a snowball rolling out of control. Pizza, eggrolls, onion rings.

When i would contemplate 80-10-10, it no longer HELD MY INTEREST.

But, reading about me doing it back then? I was certainly committed, having a good time, jazzed about losing so quickly, was looking good, MUCH better than i do now.

The only 2 drawbacks were: HAIRLOSS....and YEAST INFECTIONS when i would eat too much fat.

If i could put that aside and go back to 80-10-10 with no dates, low bananas, onlya little fat, i could theoretically lose 24 lbs in...only a few weeks?

Compare that to the 1.5 lbs a week Carlene said i should expect from now on doing what i'm doing. Uy vay. Can someone say, "Patience is a virtue," please?

What i said to her on the phone last night was, "I know i can lose weight fast on 80-10-10, but i always gained it back. I always fell off into gourmet raw huge fatty salty binges that i couldn't stop for weeks. So, i found 80-10-10 hard to maintain."

She said, "well, you STILL need to develop self control. You never did that."

No. I didn't. And you know what? I didn't really TRY all that hard to maintain 80-10-10. I saw it as a DIET and not a lifestyle.

When i started with Carlene, i was looking for a lifestyle i could happily LIVE with. Did i find it? I have been pretty happy. My hair isn't falling out. I don't get yeast infections. But, i am losing slower. And my identity as a raw foodist is shot.

Were i to reconsider and return to 80-10-10, i would do it differently. I would severely LIMIT 'treat's. I know now from MUCH experience that excessive Fat and Salt set me off.

If i NEVER would have been excessive and would have learned to take a little, i might have been 80-10-10ing (with some treats) up until now...and i might weigh 200 TODAY!!!!!

Last night, Carlene gave me a choice. "You can do what you're doing and lose 1 lbs a week and just LIVE like that forever. You WILL get thin, in two years. It will just take LONGER. OR, you can lower your calories and up your exercise and lose 2 lbs a week."

"Or, you can do low fat raw again (her label for 80-10-10), exercise 2.5 hours a day, and consistenly lose 3 lbs a week until you meet your goal. You could theoretically lose 75 lbs in 6 months doing that, or lose ALL of your excess weight, 105 lbs in a year instead of 2 years."

When Carlene said 'exercise 2.5 hours a day,' my jaw dropped. Exercise THAT much and only lose 3 lbs a WEEK? Well, i suppose 3 lbs a week IS pretty great...consistently. How much do people ever really lose on Weight Watchers? Like a pound a week? Usually people who have massive amounts of weight to lose don't do Weight Watchers...because it's too slow.

_ _ _ _ _ _ _ _ _

Well.....this whole exploration into my diet history, the numbers and the results of what i'm doing now is really....eye opening.

So, nu? What will i do?

My own blog entries of May and June 2009 so inspired me. I can't believe it was ME eating like that...lots of juicy fruit, lots of zucchini spaghetti, lots of smoothies, salads with a little tahini on it, gross raw blenderized soups that i didn't enjoy, but i tolerated.

I certainly ENJOYED it...when i got up and weighed myself the next day!!!

My problem was...when i went OFF of 80-10-10, i wasn't careful with HOW i went off. It became a free for all. I wasn't able to MANAGE going OFF. But, who's to say i couldn't do that....and work on THAT? But, use 80-10-10 as my base diet again? I certainly WAS doing better than i am now.

I weighed myself this morning and gained a lb! I'm so frustrated. Maybe it's just beans clogging my system. I didn't poop today. Don't get me wrong, i FEEL good. I'm just DISCOURAGED.

Looking back, I also ate quite a lot of bananas, but when i didn't the weight would FLY off.

So, what am i gonna do????

By eating cooked veggies and lentils and eggwhites and baked potatoes, did i really FIND my "best diet"? My work with Carlene is up next Tuesday.

Or did i already have my best diet before???? It just needed some modifications. And some hard won self control when it came to indulgences. Maybe i just indulged a little TOO much. An indulgence could be a BITE of raw pie, and not the whole thing. Or a bite of cashew pate and not 8 oz of it.

What will i do...what will i do?

I've set up an interview with Lisa Maguire already and have inquired about interviewing Dustin Kellogg and Tim Arnold, my 3 gourmet success stories from above. I think they will be enlightening.

xoxo michelle joy

Monday, February 15, 2010

The Coat is Getting Looser!

Here i am weighing 293.5...

Here i am weighing 274...

I was hoping I could see more difference between the two pictures, but when i look closely, I can see that my coat (the same coat as above in a different pattern) is not pulling around the belly and the buttons are now loosely laying against me, instead of stretched across me. Oh, well, at least I can see it!!!

My work with Carlene is going well! Somehow she really motivates me to exercise. I walk an hour or more a day without fail! Even in the cold, in the snow, in a blizzard, I get it in, no matter what! No excuses! And when i'm too tired or it's too late to walk outside or go to the gym? I've even done my hour - walking in place - in front of the TV to "CRIMINAL MINDS", my new favorite show!

I'm sure i'm losing inches, but the pounds have been slow going after the initial quick drop of 13 pounds in just a few days. I've lost about 19 lbs so far. It would be nice if it were quicker, but where really has quick weight loss ever gotten me?? I've done it here MANY times only to gain it back right away on a binge or a binge that never ends.

I'm accepting slower weight loss. What's the rush??? I haven't had ONE binge since i started the program with Carlene to find my "perfect diet."

Everyday, I write my food in, i journal, i mark down my exercise, i email her, and twice a week she calls me. Aside from Carlene's support and the support of, i check in with myself...i try to pay attention...i try to address my needs, daily.

Foodwise, everyday i wake up to a big green smoothie and E3Live. After that, it migh be a chopped raw salad, or big leafy green salad with homemade hemp dressing, or just more fruit, or maybe my home cooked no salt/no fat lentil veggie soup, or an eggwhite omelette with tons of veggies, or a baked potato with 2 Tbsp of homemade hemp milk, garlic and steamed greens and lemon over it. Aside from that, I eat tons of fruit all day, a healthy lowfat dinner, and often just have fruit for dinner. Generally, i'm getting in somewhere between 1400-1700 cals a day, 50% raw, with no more than 30% fat.

For a Valentine's treat, Cliff took me out to ALL THE WAY LIVE, a raw food eatery in Germantown, Pa. . I was able to have a wonderful meal there, but still stick to my guidelines for calories and fat.

[And by the way, isn't my Cliff a sweetheart? He wrote "CB loves MS" in the snow with his finger for his Valentine...ME...outside of the cafe'!!]

The raw apple pie is "to live for", and the salads are fantastic. My favorites are the quinoa salad (cooked), and all of the raw salads: corn salad, kale salad, seaweed salad, marinated mushrooms, cabbage slaw, sprouted wild rice salad.

When you order, you get a choice of 3 or a choice of 5 "plops" in a lovely wooden bowl. I ordered 5 plops of the salads i like. Delish!

Maybe next time i go, i'll try to reign myself in with 3 of the plops. After working up the numbers on, a meal there is fattier than i've been eating. But, it's a nice treat for every once in a while.

There was a time when all i did was binge on raw gourmet food. Now, i'm learning to moderate myself, and make better choices. I'm so pleased!!! I used to eat 2 of the 5-plop meals myself, plus 2 desserts. And i'd order the fattier hummus. Now i choose the veggies. I'm improving....I'm getting better!!!

Though i've been 50% raw, I'm not married to it. I found eggwhites make me snore! So, they are now on the 'every once in a while' list. I'd like to continue to up my raw intake, but I'm on a discovery to see what WORKS for me.

Overall, I'm learning to make healthy choices, learning to honor my needs, and learning to keep treats within reason. This new plan has a goal of LOW FAT and LOW SODIUM for weight loss. But, i've found the plan has really eradicated my desires to binge. Amazing!

Plus, the amazing knowledge imparts really helps me to make better choices. For instance, something like fried onion rings which i binged on non-stop before calling Carlene can cost me 700 calories, half of those in fat. They're just not something that should be on my food 'repertoire' anymore. Since they're over 30% fat, they should just not be for me. Bye bye!!!! The same goes for fatty raw nut pates and raw bread, something i can never stop munching on once i start. Nut pates are well over 50% fat. Shalom, my old lovers!

I run into problems constantly with these fatty/salty foods and have trouble taking just a little. And when i eat them, my desires for fat and salt escalate so, i just go bonkers. It's not unusual on a binge for me to eat 2 orders of fried mozzerella sticks, 1 order of onion rings, 1 cheesy mayonaisey boca burger wrap, plus a whole small pizza, washed down with 2 bottles of coke.

That's a 3,000 calorie "meal" right there, and half of the calories are from fat. You eat like that...and the next day, all you WANT and CRAVE is fatty salty food. You get it out of your system, and it's smooth sailing.

Something like a small banana whip, roughly 250-300 calories, makes a nice treat for me, now.

So, to summerize, in living in the grey, in having some healthy cooked and some healthy lowfat raw, in exercising daily and in making choices, but in giving myself healthy treats (within reason) when i need them, i've managed to HALT BINGE EATING COMPLETELY over the last weeks, and let go of some pounds, slowly. And letting go of overly salty and overly fatty foods has also cut the terrific cravings for these foods dramatically. WOW!

So, one day at a time, i'm still truckin!

I'd like to lose the next 74 lbs...and weigh time for an October wedding...MINE!!! Say HI to my darling, Cliff! He is my baby, my lovey, my friend, my companion, my support. I adore him!

xoxo michelle joy

Thursday, February 11, 2010

These Boots Were Made For Walkin'!

Happy Snowy morning!

We've got over 3 feet of snow here in Philadelphia from 2 blizzards within the past weeks!

Yet, I'm still going strong with my program with Carlene...( Come wind, come rain, come snow...nothing can stop me!!!

I've been walking daily for an hour or more (even in the midst of a blizzard with snow absolutely PELTING my face so hard, it hurt!)! Often for well over an hour. Many times uphill. Lately wearing 10 lbs hiking boots with 4 layers of clothing on. I'm GETTING my exercise!

And you know what? For all of the effort it's WORTH it!!! May i never ever forget that!!! You know that feeling when you contemplate exercise and you say, "Nahh, i don't FEEL like it." Don't give into that. It's easy to WANT to, to remain inactive, but the cost of inactivity is really not worth it. You get fatter and more depressed and weaker everyday. Are you really happy?

I tell myself lately that thing about Pain. We feel pain either way. Either we feel the pain of being fatter and more out of shape and more depressed. Or we feel the pain of going up hill, of our muscles hurting, of our feet hurting, of regret, of facing ourselves and not liking it. We feel pain either way. When we exercise, that pain is at least going to GET US SOMEWHERE. And that somewhere is closer to our goals.

And, the high you get from actually accomplishing what you set out to do, the feelings of self esteem and empowerment you get after you're done is priceless. The pride you feel weighing yourself and seeing you lost another pound... IT'S ALL WORTH IT!

And, it FEELS good. And the more you do it daily, the easier and easier it gets. You know how when you start out to exercise again you feel like crap because you're muscles are so weak? You just need to get OVER that. Don't give up. Because if you stick to it, daily, you WILL get stronger and stronger and then, like i do now, you WANT to walk everyday. And when you see a hill, you won't want to avoid it, you WANT to climb it.

In the snow, Cliff and i have been walking on flat ground. I am incredlous that a walk on flat ground doesn't even FEEL like a walk to me anymore it's become so easy.

I experienced this wonderful euphoric feeling from exercise this past summer. Remember?

Who could have EVER thunk i'd be feeling this in the WORST winter Philadelphia has had!!! Cliff and I are making memories and bonding during all of these wonderful walks in the snow, even in a blizzard. We feel like kids! We have that child-like sense of adventure back!

One more note: i am ALSO unbelievably SHOCKED how quickly i've regained strength and have gotten fitter and fitter and fitter in just 2 WEEKS of daily walking. i feel like a new person.

I've lost 18.5 lbs since working with Carlene on "Finding my best diet." That's almost 2 sizes! (10 lbs a size). No wonder i feel like a new person. I'm looking like 'myself' again. Me at 293.5 didn't look good or make me feel good about me. Now that i'm 275 again, i'm back in the zone i was more comfortable with. It's a little frustrating to know that it will take about 1.5 months longer to get back t 250, but, i feel like i'm on a roll and want to continue what i'm doing.

I'm about 50% raw now. I used to be 100%, but somehow feel more normal now. The only way i could lose weight on raw anymore was to do 80-10-10. I really didn't LOVE that. I wish i could be like so many people i know and eat gourmet and lose weight. I invariably always succumbed to binge eating and couldn't lose weight.

I've said it once. I'll say it again. EVERYONE has to find their OWN way. What works for you may not work for me. What works for me may not work for you. Trial and error and lots of perseverance are key.

My energy is great, though, so i'm not really concerned at this point about the cooked food. For me being able to control myself is paramount, and since i am, i'm thrilled.

The only drawbacks to not being 100% raw are:
- being puffy in the morning (cooked food face)
- maybe losing my fertility (my boss, Arnold, says that if i stayed 100% raw i could be fertile into my 60's. i don't know how true that is, but since i'm not ready to have children yet at 42, i'd hate to go into menopause and lose my chance forever. there always is adoption, though)
- losing the respect of beloved friends who are 100% raw
- losing my identity as a raw foodist
- snoring lightly (as a 100% raw foodist i did not snore at all)

For the record, I've been drinking lots of green smoothies, eat lots of fresh fruit, lots of fresh veggies, keep my caloric intake from 1400-1800 on most days, (one day i had 2500), keep well below 30% fat (usually less than 10% fat), well below 3,000mg of sodium (usually zero), and take in about 20% protein.

The cooked part of my diet consists of tons of cooked veggies and lentil beans. But, lately, i've also been having eggwhites. And yesterday for the first time i had 1 cup of spelt pasta.

In some sense i feel like i'm on weight watchers. I have a caloric limit and certain guidelines for fat and salt and protein. I read labels. I make choices. I feel EMPOWERED. Rather than cooked being a bad evil thing for me at this point, i feel like i'm learning how to live long term....without binge eating.

For a binge eater to be eating sorta 'normal'...and not to be binge eating? Amazing.

If and when i do decide to go back to 100% raw, it will be a CHOICE. Not because i HAVE to, but because i WANT to. We shall see!

The things i can attribute my newfound sense of control are:
- the fact that i'm not taking in ANY SALT and barely any fat. Severely restricting these two substances has been the key so far in helping me stay in control. I actually enjoy bland veggies and bland soups now. And they don't get me so excited. It seems to be working
- having support, a coach, has been invaluable. we often disagree, but the support is immeasurably important to my success now
- using I write my food down during the day and then input into fitday at night. I also use the journal portion of fitday, as well as the activity tab to track my exercise. i highly recommend!!!

xoxo michelle joy