Friday, May 30, 2008

Oprah's Vegan Cleanse & Jacksonville

Hi sprouts!

Greetings from lovely Jacksonville, Florida. I just had the honor of being the Keynote Speaker for The Florida Times Union 2008 Eve Awards honoring a group of remarkable women making a difference in the world through Education, Volunteer Services and Employment. My speech was titled "From Illness to Activist" and I was shocked at the number of people who were open to it and grateful. There must have been over 700 folks in the room listening to me gab about my canSer tale and how happy I am to be vegan! But no matter how many times I do this I still start to sweat as the chicken comes out and I sweetly start my story.

But I digress. As you have all heard by now, Oprah is one week into a three-week vegan cleanse, inspired by Kathy Freston's book Quantum Wellness. I just finished the book last night in my hotel room and I must say it is wonderful. It's a great basic (yet well documented) tool filled with solid education about the optimum diet and lifestyle for total health.

I especially like how Kathy suggests approaching the cleanse (transition, transition - how many times have we chatted about that?).

Check out what Lady Oprah's cuttin' out:

* Sugar
* Alcohol
* Caffeine
* Gluten
* All animal products

For many of you who would like to cleanse but don't want to try a juice fast this is a great way to go. 3 weeks without any of the stuffy mucus stuff can change your life, transform your health, and open your eyes to how good you CAN feel. Seems like a huge task at first but with each passing day you'll notice a new kind of sustainable energy (after the detox symptoms pass that is. DOH!). Of course, don't forget to make juice not war baby!

Inspired by Kathy's book, I'm gearing up for another cleanse myself. The last time I fasted was in May with the CSL Cleansing Group. With all this travel and business I have fallen into the bread wagon. Ok, let me be honest, I have been DIVING into the bread wagon. Oh, so hard to control when the first doughy slice passes my lips. YUM! Who doesn't love tons of bread? Well, my thighs for one, my candida for two, my energy level for three, and my digestion for four!

Traveling makes it more complicated when salads come in the shape of jello molds! What is THAT sir? It's definitely challenging to keeping up healthy eating on the road. If I do anything in this life I will master the art of the kitchen nap sack! I bring my powders and supplements, lots of water, some almonds/pumpkin seeds, a few raw snack bars, my tea and stevia and almond milk. I tend to rely on fruit which I don't do when I'm on my home routine. Natalia Rose (who will be guest blogging for me in July!) has some great tips for travel in her book The Raw Food Detox Diet. She teaches you that it is possible to find what you need on almost any menu if you get creative.

As I mentioned in my speech today, we are the drivers, rather than the passengers on the road to personal and global health. Books like Kathy's remind us to ask questions and speak up for our needs, to make daily choices to nourish our bodies while taking into consideration beautiful mama earth. Mama is pleading with us to be conscious consumers, to support each other, and to push the limits, boundaries and comfort zones of what we will tolerate in these difficult times.

More than half of all Americans die of heart disease or cancer and two thirds are over weight.

As stewards of the environment we no can longer sit back and watch as our trees, rivers, land, oceans and fellow creatures disappear at shocking levels.

Clearly there is both an inner and outer global warming taking place. The difference between Illness and wellness is reflected in the spelling – “I” Illness – “We” Wellness. The part always equals the whole and the ripple effect should never be underestimated.

Yeah Kathy Freston! Yeah Oprah! Yeah Jacksonville!

To read all about Oprah's 3-week vegan cleanse and join the discussion, go to:

Any one else reading the book? If so, what do you think? Any one else up for a cleanse or are you cleansing now? Tell moi! Ok, off to the airport...

Peace and awareness,

PS. Here's a quote from a recent article by Freston. "Since there has been a lot of talk about the cleanse portion of my new book, I thought I might emphasize that one key component of the cleanse is eating consciously. Sitting down to eat is an elemental part of every day, and what we choose to put on our plate has repercussions not only for our physical well being, but also for our spiritual well being. Conscious eating means simply this: remaining awake and aware of how food gets to our plate -- and then choosing what we eat according to our values."

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