Dear Readers, Clients, and Friends:
I have received innumerable e-mails and letters to date with your effusive thanks for The Raw Food Detox Diet, Raw Food Life Force Energy and Detox for Women. Thank you for the candid, touching stories of your personal journeys to vibrant health through the principles set forth in the book. I was deeply moved by your honesty and impressed with your questions. You are a very thoughtful, warm-hearted bunch!
In response to your questions, I have created this area on the site where I will post the questions and answers which I believe are applicable to many of you as you continue to grow with this program. If you have a question that is not included here, please feel free to e-mail us and we will do our best to answer and/or add it promptly.
Due to the overwhelming number of e-mails I receive, I may not be able to answer yours personally, but I will incorporate your questions and answers into this page, so keep returning for more information!
I wish you all tremendous success as you proceed. Don't let anyone deter you from your goals or tell you it can't be done. The average person has no idea how good they could feel or how much more beautiful, lean, and glowing they could be if they followed Nature's basic principles for healthy living!
Remember the ultimate key: Quick Exit Foods in Quick Exit Combinations!
Sending Much Love and Joy to all,
Click topic to view:• Green Lemonade
Just starting the program and have questions? Check out Natalia's Pointers
Q: Can I make the Green Lemonade the night before and store it to take it to the office in the morning?
A: Although it is unquestionably ideal to drink any raw vegetable juice immediately upon extraction, before the integrity of the enzymes are compromised by exposure to air (oxidation), there are 3 main reasons why it's still a good idea to make it ahead of time if that's the only way to ensure you"ll fit it into your morning routine:
1. Habit - getting in the habit of having your juice every day prior to concentrated food and the benefits that come with consuming a vital substance that does not require digestion (keeping you in "fasting mode" while you receive powerful nutrition) cannot be underestimated.
2. Abstinence (no, not from sex, from food)! When juice replaces one meal of your day (ideally replacing breakfast) not only do you prolong your fast between dinner and your next meal as mentioned above but the energizing, nutrient rich effect of raw juice (yes, even if it's lost 30-50% of its enzymatic life force overnight) will still give you enough of a boost to make it possible to abstain from eating concentrated food before lunch. Remember, three meals a day is just too much food for an adult. Abstaining from one meal means there is far less for your body to process. Less new food to process means more old waste that can be processed instead! This processing and elimination of old, accumulated waste is what actually speeds up the system! The combination of the electromagnetic power of the green vegetable juice and the abstinence from food is the central metabolic event required for detoxification. This is the event that results in reaching greater levels of health and weight loss!
3. You will still receive the chlorophyll, minerals, vitamins and a decent amount of live enzymes and life force from your juice if you keep it very cold and well-sealed until you drink it!
Here's a thought: perhaps you could make your batch of juice when it is more convenient to your day but also when your stomach is empty again such as several hours after lunch or an hour or so before dinner. Enjoy a big glass of it freshly made so you benefit from the maximum impact of alkaline vitality and then seal and chill the rest of the batch for the following morning. You’ll still get the precious chlorophyll, organic hydration, minerals, and many vitamins and enzymes when you drink it the following day! Cheers!
Q: I am starting out by drinking the Green Lemonade for breakfast and eating fruit, but I have to squeeze my coffee in there somewhere (at least for now).
A: With the understanding that coffee is acidic (whether caffeinated or not), and ideally something you'll wean yourself off of in time, here are a few tips to support you as long as you include coffee in your cleanse-approach:
1. Know that even though coffee is acidic, it is rarely the biggest offender in the diet and because it is a liquid and not a dense substance it does not impede the cleansing of waste as much as other offensive, acidic substances like soy, grains, sugars, meats, processed foods, etc. So if need be, coffee can be the last thing to go once you've triumphed over the bigger, denser offenders. I underscore this because knowing this enables coffee-o-holics to proceed with cleansing where they might otherwise count themselves out of the game.
2. In terms of food combining and placing coffee in the scheme of your daily intake, just make sure that coffee is only taken on an empty stomach. You may have coffee 30 minutes on either side of the fruit without interference. Do not take coffee after a meal as you will acidify the whole meal. If you need a hot beverage after a meal, stick with an herbal tea -- mint and chamomile are usually available at all restaurants. Eventually, you'll find the green juice charges you up far more than the coffee, and you'll likely decide to drop coffee from your routine altogether (as impossible as that may be to imagine now)!
Don't let your current attachment to coffee hold you back from embracing the cleansing lifestyle. You'll achieve so much even if you still include a cup a day. Remember, cleansing is a dance -- we dance with our newly discovered power and with our perceived limitations -- that is how we progress!
Q: Is there a "right" time frame of when you can eat one type of food to the next--e.g., morning fruits and Green Lemonade?
A: Try as much as possible to incorporate the “light to heavy” concept in your daily routine. This means that you eat your lightest food first (green juice, fruits, raw veggies, etc.), culminating in heavier fare such as cooked foods, flesh, and grains later in the day. You should also apply this concept to individual meals: for example, salad first, followed by cooked food or denser raw food.
Q: How long after Green Lemonade can you eat?
A: 10-15 minutes is usually long enough, but if you drink more than 30 ounces, I recommend waiting at least 45 minutes.
Q: I calculated the nutritional value (online) of the Green Lemonade, and I'm totally delighted with the amount of calcium, iron, and other nutrients it contains. However, I was wondering if there is such a thing as too much vitamin A? The 30 oz. drink I made with kale, dandelion greens, and romaine contained about 600% of a person's RDA for vitamin A. Is this okay?
A: The vitamin A is in the form of beta-carotene. The body will safely throw off any excess beta-carotene, so you needn't worry about that. Yes, the protein (amino acids) is in the juice and in a highly absorbable form!
Q: I have the opportunity to travel to Italy this summer, but I find that I am dreading navigating the food: the dairy, the cheese, the unavailability of raw food items other than fruits and vegetables. Do you have suggestions for those like myself who are traveling abroad?
A: Contrary to what most people imagine, Mediterranean destinations like Italy, France, Spain, Greece, etc. are convenient places to incorporate the program. You'll have easy access to great fresh fruit and avocados for salads. In restaurants you can order plates of steamed veggies with sides of marinara sauce and goat cheese to eat with your salads for lunch, and at dinner you'll get beautiful fish, salads, veggies, and wine. Take your 70% (+) chocolate bars for dessert and you'll be all set.
Q: What do you do about the green juice when you travel? Is there any way to substitute it?
A: I don't expect to find the green juice when I travel, so I just enjoy herbal tea with lemon and stevia in the a.m., then a large raw veggie salad with avocado, dates, and bananas for lunch (or a fresh fruit plate), and then raw salad, steamed veggies, and fish for dinner (vegetarians can enjoy a steamed or grilled veggie plate), with the dark chocolate for dessert (I take plenty of bars with me). I don't ever eat on the plane (that’s my big secret). Instead, when I travel internationally, I make two 32-ounce vegetable juices, freeze them the night before, and take them with me on the plane to enjoy the whole way there (this gets me all the way to South Africa). The enzymes and high alkalinity from the juice also combat travel fatigue. You could take some apples for breakfast on the plane after a night of green juice. Many of you will still eat on the plane, but try to eat as close to the end of the flight as possible since stomach/intestinal transit is VERY slow in flight--couple that with dehydration, and you can see why flying is so constipating!back to top
Q: Can I mix the fruit together in a fruit salad?
A: Yes, initially you can do that, but eventually you'll want to separate melons. Ideally, eat melons on their own before other fruits. If they come in a fruit salad, just eat them first.
Q: Is there a "right" time frame of when you can eat one type of food to the next--e.g., morning fruits and Green Lemonade?
A: Try as much as possible to incorporate the “light to heavy” concept in your daily routine. This means that you eat your lightest food first (green juice, fruits, raw veggies, etc.), culminating in heavier fare like cooked foods, flesh, and grains later in the day. You should also apply this concept to individual meals: for example, salad first, followed by cooked food or denser raw food.
Q: Can you eat neutral foods anytime?
A: You can always eat foods in the same family without waiting 3 to 4 hours. Neutral foods like raw veggies and the dark chocolate may be enjoyed anytime, but try to avoid constant eating as it inhibits digestive rest, which is a key to renewing the body.
Q: How does young coconut meat combine?
A: Young coconut meat combines with veggies, starches, nuts, seeds, and dried fruits. Don’t mix it with flesh or cheese. The water from young coconuts is neutral.
Q: With and after which foods can I have raw treats such as Raweos and Raw Bakery brownies? Can I enjoy them after an avocado salad? What about after fish?
A: Remember that the raw treats are just nut-seed-dried fruit concoctions, so they only go with that category of foods. Enjoy them with a big raw salad, and they can also mix well with each other. You will learn all you need to know about how to combine foods by reading the ingredients. If it is made of raw nuts and/or dried fruit, you’ll know that they combine in that category per your Quick Exit Combination table on page 36 of The Raw Food Detox Diet.
Q: What do raw crackers such as Lydia's Sunflower Seed Bread combine with?
A: Same as above. If you know the ingredients in the item, you’ll know how they combine.
Q: I'm confused about how avocados combine.
A: Avocados typically combine as starch (even though they are technically a fruit), meaning they will go with breads, grains, etc., but not with fleshes or other categories. HOWEVER, they are one of the odd exceptions as they DO combine with dried fruits (BUT NOT WITH NUTS). Bananas are also an exception, as they combine with fresh fruits and dried fruits due to their “in-between” consistency. This means that you can have bananas as a dessert after an avocado and raw veggie salad! Even try drizzling the You-Must-Be-Kidding Chocolate Sauce (from p. 147 of The Raw Food Detox Diet) on top of the banana--sliced or simply dipped!
Q: Is carob OK? What does it mix with?
A: Carob and chocolate are considered neutral for our purposes!
Q: First you say that we should not mix fruit, and then you recommend the strawberry ice cream for dessert. Would you please explain this?
A: Fruits do mix with green veggies, as in the Power Soup (p. 103 of The Raw Food Detox Diet), and when you juice, apples go perfectly with the green juice. Also, if you’re eating an entirely raw meal, you can enjoy some raw fruit. It is not a perfect combination, but your body is simply not sensitive enough in the first few years of eating this way to react significantly to this combination. Technically, just for your own education, it's not an ideal combo--but technicalities don’t matter. What matters is what works, and right now this should work for you. Just be sure there is no cooked food in this meal.
Q: Is raw bread sprouted-grain bread like Ezekiel? If not, where do I find it? And what makes a raw bread RAW?
A: The Ezekiel and Alverado Street Bakery breads are NOT raw, but they are very easily digested, which makes them a "quick exit" bread and very useful in transition stages. But they are definitely heated above 118 degrees--and raw breads would not be heated above 118. The best raw breads I've ever tasted are the Good Stuff by Mom & Me breads sold through live-live.com. I especially love their raw mini-loaves--they are fabulous piled high with sliced tomatoes, sprouts, and Dijon mustard as open-faced sandwiches, or even with just a bit of raw honey, raw almond butter, or pesto!
Q: What type of smoothie do you mean when you mention it as a replacement for a veggie or fruit juice?
A: Blend fresh or frozen organic berries with freshly squeezed orange juice and bananas. This is what I make for my kids and hubby first thing in the morning. They happily polish off every last ounce!
Q: A lot of raw foodists use psyllium. Should I try it?
A: I personally DO NOT recommend using psyllium because it expands 10 times its weight in the body, which, if your body does not expel all that it draws up, could turn into a very uncomfortable if not dangerous experiment. There are occasions when it is useful, but unless you are prepared to do several colonics to ensure the passage of all the post-putrefactive matter that the psyllium will draw up, I do not recommend it.
Q: Why do you recommend eating lightly during the day and eating your heaviest meal in the evening?
A: During the daylight hours we need as much natural energy as possible. Eating heavily during the day robs our energy. It also leaves much more opportunity for creating digestive problems by piling undigested meals upon one another. Leaving your heaviest meal for dinnertime virtually ensures the complete elimination of that meal before the ingestion of the next--10 or more hours later. I know it's contrary to popular wisdom, but you'll have to try it out to prove it to yourself.
Q: What is a good snack for when you're hungry but running out the door?
A: Veggies are always safe since you don’t have to worry about your combos. The snack really depends on when you’re having it, how long after a meal, and whether you want something in a different food group from what you ate previously. For example, if you are snacking within the same food group as your latest meal, you could safely snack on anything from that same category, but if you are switching categories, you must wait three hours. I don’t recommend much snacking, but I know most people want something around 3 to 5 pm. If you are going to snack, try to make it a raw snack so that at least you'll benefit from added enzymes. The best snacks are hydrating and enzyme-rich, such as raw veggies or veggie juice. Fruits can be good if you’re sure you’ve left at least 3 to 4 hours after lunch. The raw cheeses like Alta Dena are great leading up to a flesh-and-vegetable combo dinner. (I often enjoy the raw cheeses before going out.)
Q: What about hummus?
A: Hummus is okay if you're not trying to lose weight. But if your weight is an issue, I would keep it out. If you really desire it, have it with just with veggies (starch would be okay for levels 4 and 5), but never with flesh or nuts. But note that hummus (beans and tahini) is not an ideal combo to begin with. If you are just starting out, it shouldn't hold you back, but as you progress you will find it doesn't encourage weight loss. Beans in general are not ideal, and definitely not for women who are trying to get super lean. Men can typically get away with beans if they are properly combined. There are some good raw hummus recipes out there. Try the one from Raw Food, Real World. These are mostly made from nuts, so combine accordingly.
Q: How much water should I be drinking a day?
A: Don’t worry about drinking any specific amount of water--your food is now going to be so water-rich that hydration shouldn't be an issue. Between your vegetable juices, fruits, and raw veggies, you shouldn’t be thirsty at all. You no longer have to subscribe to the old rule of 8 glasses of water a day!
Q: When and how much wine can I have?
A: A couple of glasses whenever you like!
Q: If I eat raw food until dinner, where will my protein come from? I want to maintain my muscle mass. What would you suggest?
A: Leafy greens, Green Lemonade, sea vegetables, raw nuts, nut butters, raw goat cheese, and some fish would be the best way to meet your protein needs. You could incorporate some fertile, free-range eggs too. However, try not to eat flesh more than once a day.
Q: I am having a hard time getting past the sweets. Will this slowly disappear?
A: In terms of sweets, there are so many delicious sweets included in the program: dates, dried fruits, pure maple syrup, Stevia and agave. You can also enjoy the 70% Green & Black chocolate bars, the Goldie's Carob bars and the Kollar cookies! Just properly combine per the book (pure maple syrup, Stevia and agave are NEUTRAL sweeteners) and enjoy. After a raw salad you could have any of these sweets! Feel free to have something sweet after lunch AND dinner!back to top
Q: If I fall off the wagon one day and eat the wrong things in the wrong combinations is there anything I can do to make up for it?
A: Absolutely! First of all, if you're going to mess up, you're better off doing it for dinner rather than in the middle of the day so you don't incur a pile up on top of a miscombined meal. If you do mess up in the middle of the day just stick to veggies for dinner and never "over-do" two days in a row and you'll avoid regressing.
Q: I am an avid athlete. Can I do this program? What about protein?
A: Avid athletes do very well if they approach raw food in the right way (as suggested in the book). First, I would focus on getting the combinations right which will give you a lot more energy. As you weave in more raw foods and gradually transition, you will see that you have plenty of energy and probably perform better than ever. Just be sure to eat enough. You should never feel hungry and you should be eating hearty portions, particularly in the evening. The raw Lara bars are excellent energy bars for you. You'll find the Kamut pasta and sweet potatoes make excellent fuel -- so enjoy them even though they are not raw. If you feel sluggish, it's just your bowel carrying waste it's not releasing. If you can find a good colon therapist it will make all the difference!
You'll get plenty of protein from your Green Lemonade, raw nuts, sea vegetables, raw goat cheese and you may also include some organic eggs and fish (preferably for dinner) if you desire. Keep it gradual and you'll have fantastic results. I am extremely active in my day and work with many athletes who have wonderful success and would never go back to protein shakes and power bars!
Try the Power Soup and Sunshine Joy from the book as pre-workout fuel. These blended soups will give you lots of enzymes without weighing you down.
In terms of exercise that is more in line with this lifestyle, yoga is at the top of that list. A great power yoga or ashtanga yoga class will really challenge you. You'll be surprised. I personally love the Power Yoga 1-2-3 series by Bryan Kest which you can find on Amazon.
Q: I'm on a strict budget and concerned about the cost of this diet and how it will work with my busy schedule. Any suggestions?
A: Keep costs down by sticking with green salads, steamed veggies, sweet potatoes, millet, quinoi, sprouted grain bread and avocados with some fish when you want it. You don't have to buy the specialty raw treats (which make the lifestyle expensive) to succeed. Organic carrots are also very cheep which you can juice tons of. Fresh fruit in season is not expensive. Keep it simple and high-vegetable content. Don't worry about the other stuff...
Q: I lost weight initially but for the past week my scale hasn't budged. What's happening?
A: The first thing to ask yourself is: "Are as the bowels moving on a real regular basis?" If not, that's probably the problem (you're holding waste). In addition to taking all the steps to improve elimination (using a stool to prop your feet up, stepping down a level to ensure you're not over doing the raw foods prematurely), I would limit/eliminate grains and limit fruit for a week and see what happens. You may also just be at a brief stand still as your body readjusts to the new way of eating. But you don't plateau as you might in typical dieting because your body will rid it self of all that is excess weight (remember weight=waste). For the very few to whom this temporary stand still occurs, just know that as your body experiences deeper healing the weight will continue to come off! Remember that for most women, fish (contracting) is more slimming than grain (expansive) so don't get hung up on the vegetarian concept (unless you're doing it for spiritual reasons).
Q: How do you feed your kids?
A: My kids eat at about a level 2-3 since they really enjoy cooked grains like the sprouted grain breads, spelt, kamut and soba noodle pastas as well as sweet potatoes, steamed veggies and legume based soups. My son also really enjoys organic eggs. I did keep them totally raw for their first 18 months of life and to this day they have never had need for an antibiotic or suffered from ear infections. They have had the occasional fever but it has always followed a day of poor eating such as a friend's birthday party or a piece of meat. Instead of contra-banning anything for them, I allow them to eat as they choose on these occasions warning them that they may not feel well later and then they see how true that is and, I believe will make decisions about what they eat based on this fact rather than a sense of deprivation. Not all children are successful eating a raw food diet or even a vegan diet from the get-go since their parents habits and their inherited energy from their parents are usually too toxic. This is why you hear so many sad stories about children who are taken from their vegan/raw parents with failure to thrive. The parents are stuck in dogma and not aware of why their child needs a very gradual transition with plenty of cooked food just as an adult would.
Q: Are you 100% raw?
A: You may have gathered from the book, raw is not the only key to cellular renewal -- ease of digestion and maximum elimination are! Therefore, "Quick Exit" is more important than "Raw." So, I do include some steamed veggies and sweet potatoes (and up until fairly recently the occasional fresh fish meal) in my diet. But I would say I do cooked food less than 4 X/month and only as an evening meal if I do. I have been living this way for about 7 years now and I feel healthier and leaner than I have since I was 12 and it just keeps on getting better - not because of the raw component but because of the QUICK EXIT component and the attention to elimination.
Q: I've heard that Splenda is not very good for you. I'm surprised you mention it in your detox book...
A: I personally do not use Splenda but have found it helpful in transitioning my clients off of Equal and Sweet 'n Low. I use and recommend NuNaturals New White Stevia. It's really good. But if you don't like the taste you can use the Splenda temporarily to get you off of white sugar and other sugar substitutes. There's so much deep change to the diet that it won't hold up the cleanse. But, if you're ok with the taste of Stevia that's a much better choice! By the way, the new reprint of the book will not contain the Splenda reference.back to top
Q: How does this program work for people who suffer from IBS?
A: Everyone I have worked with that has IBS has had great success! The food combining alone should help you tremendously.
Q: Can I do this program as a diabetic?
A: Yes, many diabetics enjoy this program and experience fabulous results! The key is to limit the fruit in the beginning (as you recover your health you'll be able to eat more fruit) to melons, grapefruit, berries and green apples and don't over do the grain items. When you eat sweet potatoes and grains be sure to do them in the presence of water rich vegetables.
Instead of using maple syrup, you can use small amounts of agave and you can always use Stevia to sweeten. A few dates here and there will be ok in recipes but don't eat them "straight" in any substantial qualities.
There is so much to eat even without the very sweet items so enjoy those other things and focus on great big raw salads with great dressings (honey in dressing won't matter since the abundant water content in the raw vegetables will "dilute" the sweetness) and proper combos. The 70% chocolate by Green & Black is a perfect dessert for you.
Q: I have a history of Candida. How should I tailor this program?
A: With regard to candida I would still steer clear of fruit, sugars, and grains. As with the diabetic approach, you can enjoy grapefruit, blueberries and green apples and sweeten use Stevia. Once your condition turns around you will be able to enjoy the bounty of nature!
Organic young coconuts and their water will be very useful for you.
Focus on steamed veggies, fish, raw veggies, raw cheese and sea veggies (see if you can find Kombu noodles - they are wonderful and act as pasta without the drawbacks of grains). You can order the pasta style kombu at: 866-FOOD-4U1 or online at www.kombu-noodle.com). Top with Seeds of Change pasta sauce and steamed, blanched broccoli topped with lots of grated Alta Dena raw goat cheese (let it all melt together in the oven at low heat. This is my favorite!!