The Monkey Monkey Diet for Optimal Health and Well-being
By Abbey and Natalie
First things first…..
Before you go NEAR a Fruit/Raw Based Diet you need to do three things:
1) Read Natalie’s TRANSITION GUIDE and follow the steps carefully. DO NOT SKIP THIS STEP!
2) Read Dr Fuhrman’s GUIDE TO VEGAN SUPPLEMENTS and start a high quality B12/D3
3) Purchase and READ either of the two following books – preferably both: (because we would hope that you wouldn’t change something as huge as your diet without educating yourselves on how to do it safely 🙂 )
Abbey and I used The Vibrant Diet and 80/10/10 as a launching pad, but over the past two years we have followed our intuition and personalized our own ideas for eating raw, reversing chronic illnesses through diet and making this work long term in a healthy way. Everything we recommend has been tried, tested and has helped us. We recommend reading and listening to as many reputable sources as you can in this journey and using YOUR intuition and best judgement. Raw diets can either optimize your health when done right, or ruin it when done wrong. Run a mile from anyone who looks unhealthy, tries to sell you something other than information or tells you not to supplement or eat greens. We believe in science based information and results. There are studies on this and it works!
Be safe, take things slow and do not shun medical care in acute conditions. We aren’t doctors, we are simply sharing our experiences of using a fruit based diet to reverse or mute chronic health conditions. We are not doctors, nor is this intended to be taken as medical advice. If in doubt always go to the doctor or talk with your doctor before changing your diet. A Functional Medicine Doctor is a fantastic way to find someone who will listen. There are also vegan doctors out there. A raw diet will not make you invincible and must be done carefully, following the three steps outlined above.
That being said, we decided to present this information in question and answer format. Feel free to add more questions below!
ASK A MONKEY MONKEY
So what exactly DO you eat? Do you eat all fruit?
As you should have already read Dr Graham’s or Dr Klein’s books by now you should know that the average human body CANNOT MEET IT’S MINERAL, ELECTROLYTE AND PROTEIN NEEDS from commercial fruit. Furthermore primates do not eat all fruit. Check out Victoria Bountenko’s RESEARCH ON WILD CHIMPANZEE DIETS. They live off 50% greens by volume, 50% fruits and some eat insects and a small amount of animal matter that we can bypass with a nice B12 supplement and a few extra nuts and seeds. Don’t believe me? Check out Disney’s Monkey Kingdom. There was no citrus fasting or all fruit. Diversity, greens and fruit. A few fats. Lots of vegetables. Did you know Bell Peppers have more Vitamin C than oranges? EAT THEM!
Having spent years researching raw diets, for every person thriving eating only fruits and coconut water (who almost ALWAYS have under 5 years experience as it takes time for the body’s mineral stores to be depleted or else are living in the tropics eating higher quality fruit and a high diversity of it – I’m not saying it can’t be done but you just shouldn’t try it) there are three more who got sick and blame the fruit. Usually in the northern parts of the USA. Luckily, having coached a few people back to health I can assure you that it wasn’t the fruit. It was the way the diet was handled.
So firstly, we eat fruit, along with at least a pound of greens a day, preferably blended or juiced or chewed very well. Nuts and seeds provide raw protein and omega 3/6’s and should be included but kept to very small portions late in the day.
So secondly, what I would like to add to the books you just read is that fruit quality outside of Hawaii and Costa Rica where the two authors live is well… inconsistent. Therefore unless you live in Florida or the tropics AVOID CITRUS FRUITS and PINEAPPLE. An orange here and there is fantastic. Pineapple on occasion is great. However, I have met at least a dozen people who became ill from making orange juice or pineapple juice more than 20% of their daily diet. This is because these fruits DO NOT RIPEN and are therefore acidic and harmful to the digestive tract in large doses. Anyone who claims fruit damaged their teeth or health was most likely eating unripe fruit and not enough activated (chewed, blended or juiced) greens. I should know, I ruined my teeth doing orange juice all winter and then fixed them with bananas and greens.
The best fruits to focus on are your BANANAS, dates, (soak! soak!) melons, papayas, apples, figs, grapes and mangoes. Stone fruits are great in moderation. Berries are incredible nutritional powerhouses best grown at home to avoid pesticides. Frozen organic berries are perfect in your banana smoothies which neutralizes the acidity of some berries which can upset stomachs. If you are sick with an immune disorder or digestive disorder then I would focus mostly on the SWEET fruits and BLEND YOUR GREENS. We tell anyone trying to heal to focus mostly on GREEN SMOOTHIES (greens/celery, bananas – berries and cacao optional) to give your system what it needs to heal and get better.
Do not OVERTHINK anything… just make sure you are eating at least 1600 calories a day or more of mostly sweet fruits (bananas have 100 each so load in those green smoothies), a pound or more of activated greens (chew, blend, juice) and a good B12 or D3 supplement. Transition slowly and study the books you just bought and you will do great. And if you can afford it, green juice will make you feel even better! For those on a budget – did you know you can blend carefully selected grass with bananas to make a powerful green smoothie? Just make sure it’s from your yard or a safe place with no pesticides.
So in conclusion:
- You need to eat greens. Barley grass juice powder is an OK substitution for greens but not the same. You need to get enough sodium from vegetables and celery (6 sticks a day) otherwise you can develop a life threatening salt deficiency.
- We eat mostly green smoothies and fruit during the day and a large salad at night which includes small amounts of fat which help the body absorb nutrients from the greens. Greens are also very high in Omega 3 and you MUST chew your salad well. These are concepts outlined in detail in those two books you just read. 😉 Green juices are great!
- Mineral deficiency can take years to show up and can be life threatening. Take annual blood tests. I have met enough people who ended up with dangerous B12 deficiencies on vegan diets (it can happen to meat/SAD eaters too but it’s added to processed foods like cereal and some juices… yuck) to assure you that people who refute deficiencies are crazy and should be avoided. Check out my recommended products tab to see what I use or find your own. Just going by “I feel good” is irresponsible.
- Some fruits do not continue to ripen after being picked and should be enjoyed in small doses if you are living north of the tropics. Get your vitamin C from bell peppers instead. Raw orange juice can in fact be “addictive” because the gut damage releases endorphins. If you wouldn’t put it on a cut, don’t eat it.
- The most successful Fruitarians take minimal supplements, eat a balanced diet including fruits, vegetables, activated greens, nuts and some fats and focus mostly on sweet fruits such as bananas, dates and melons.
What diet should I eat for my specific health condition?
Basically, if you are healthy, I would just run with exactly what Doug and Dave outline in the two recommended books. My addendum would be to start with probiotics, supplement as we advise and add green smoothies and juices.
Autoimmune issues are gut issues. I wrote a great ARTICLE ON ARTHRITIS which explains this. I personally reversed several… SLE Lupus… Fibromyalgia and Rheumatoid Arthritis. Most people get multiple diagnoses and although they affect you differently, it is theorized that most are linked to damaged gut health.. Including depression, anxiety and mental disorders. The really cool thing is I had lived with bad joints for so long I didn’t expect they could be healed, but BAM… the pain just dropped off at about 4 months in. Comes back if I stray from my diet or drink alcohol.
I have been researching this for a while and I have even met mainstreamers who made strides with their MS, autoimmune diseases or arthritis by cutting grains, gluten, dairy or meat. I have a wonderful PCP who has helped her patients heal everything from ADHD to autoimmune by getting them off gluten, grains and processed foods. As I wrote in the transition guide, those are the big bad. Some people will have permanent damage, others can heal. But you can improve it. A skeptical friend of mine was kept up at night with horrible arthritis from years of surfing in his shoulders. Cutting out ALL grains and dairy made it vanish into the night. Half measures can be helpful. But raw is about giving this your BEST shot. It’s about trying to make it go away entirely. If it can. raw can do that.
So as you see from my article, to heal these conditions we first need to heal the gut. Which means NO ACIDIC FRUITS!!! I can’t stress this enough. I would also blend my salads as green smoothies, rotating the greens every few days.
So here’s what I did/would do/would advise for anyone trying to heal something hard.
Up to 90 days on green smoothies. Extreme? Well, living with disease is more extreme really and doing something monotonous yet cheap should be worth it to you to heal your health issues as I assure you it will. It worked for me and it can work for you. Even one week can really help your body clean out. Figure out what’s right for you.
Slow transition is KEY. Follow my transition steps linked above SLOWLY. Do NOT move on or drop anything else until you feel OK at the level you are at. Most people who go from being chronically ill to a full raw diet are taking a swan dive onto concrete. I have told people not to do it time and time again and it always ends the same way. They feel like crap, blame the fruit and go back to whatever they were eating. It CAN be done (think Joe Cross on his juice fast) but bear in mind he SUFFERED that first week. Do it only if you are willing to stick with this no matter what, deal with the bad headaches and chills as your body dumps out toxins and bacteria overgrowths die off. Enemas and colon hydrotherapy can help. You will sleep a lot. You may feel weak for up to a month. I was pretty sick and got worse for a month before I started to feel better as my body was dumping out toxins left and right with no regard for my feelings. Then all of a sudden I was hiking the Na Pali coast for 6 hours at the 6 week mark (yes I booked a vacation to force myself to get better) feeling better than I had in 5 years.
So once you have transitioned, you will start your gut healing program. It works for any gut issues, such as diverticulitis, Chrons, Colitis (highly recommend buying David Klein’s book on that for those – it’s in my recommended reading), autoimmune diseases, MS , depression and anxiety. As Abbey is reversing Trigeminal Neuralgia with a raw diet everything is possible when you heal the gut. I am still amazed to hear stories like hers.
For those into “parasite cleanses” this is also more effective. No comment. Stuff like that starves.
You will need:
Victoria Boutenko’s book “Green For Life” to get excited and motivated. ($10 is worth it to get better… hell that doesn’t even cover a copay)
Lots of bananas. If you can’t have bananas use papaya, dates and apples as a caloric base for your smoothies. Melons can be blended alone for a break in the routine.
Lots of different greens. I like wild greens, but romaine, celery, spinach, mesculin mix, red and green leaf lettuce and kale all go in my blender. Beet tops are nutritional powerhouses and easy to find in farmer’s markets. You will buy a different green each time you go to the store to make sure you are getting enough nutrients – each one has a different profile. Spinach is high in oxalic acid. Don’t just use spinach. Rotate.
Supplements. See supplement section.
Probiotic for 6 months. See probiotic section. If it upsets your stomach try a softer one.
L-Glutamine. About $8 on Amazon.
So for your smoothies, you want to be using 4-6 bananas and then stuffing the blender to the top with lettuce. Blend with distilled water to a desired consistency. If you can, add MORE greens after the first set are blended down. Berries and cacao can be added for variety. Cherries and bananas are amazing. You don’t have to use greens in every smoothie but I would go for most.
I love green juices and used them when I was first healing. Do as many as you can afford through the day.
If you want to snack and need to chew, grab apples or bananas and make sure they are well chewed. The whole point of this is simplicity though.
Now I am better I still make 70% of my day green smoothies. But I will make other raw dishes and enjoy large salads and other fruits.
For support, come find us on the Vegan Fruitarians Facebook group. It’s free and there are people to help 24/7.
There are people who have claimed to improve cancer on raw diets. I had precancerous cells that vanished when I went raw. I was mostly on green smoothies and got proper testing to be sure, as that’s kind of a big deal. However it’s super illegal to talk about natural approaches to cancer. I therefore suggest looking into Gerson Therapy and modifying their ideas to a more raw perspective. If it was me, I would do all raw but add their 12 green juices and coffee thingies and focus fruits that contain cancer fighting compounds such as berries, grapes. pineapples (yes at this point you can have the acidic fruit), soursop, noni (disgusting… just disgusting) and lightly steamed or raw mushrooms. Allliums are said to fight cancer but they upset my stomach. Flax seed is effective against cancer. ChrisBeatCancer.com is pretty cool. I would also do a colon cleanse… I like Blessed Herbs. Again, not telling anyone not to go to a doctor. Ever. 🙂
The most important thing is to prevent cancer and disease before it manifests. Berries in particular, fresh fruits and a ton of greens. Lots of rest. Avoid stress. Avoid negativity. Louise Hay’s book on You can Heal Your Life is amazing. She beat cancer through a healthy diet and POSITIVE THINKING. Being positive is so important, whether you are just trying to stick with your diet or trying to get well or trying to feel happier. Diet is the ying, attitude is the yang. Don’t be one of those angry vegans. Don’t judge people who don’t eat the way we do. Don’t laugh at people who can’t manage all raw. It’s all bad karma and you will manifest those issues in your own life. When you go vegan it’s tempting to tell other people off but don’t. Be a shining example of health and talk only to those who seem open. Otherwise you will waste your precious energy. Some people aren’t ready to hear certain things in this lifetime. It may even be your spouse or children. leave them be. Do your thing. Don’t apologize for doing your thing and be proud of it. I guarantee they will be asking you for health tips soon enough, Try and get loved ones to add one green smoothie to their day if you are worried about their health. That alone can help. And never give up. A friend of mine just changed his diet after 13 years of friendship. Sometimes it takes a while for seeds to come to the surface.
As for other health conditions, I am trying to build a database of success stories. But they are out there. I would personally roll with the green smoothie thing every time. Thyroid people just need to look up which greens affect them. Essentially it’s the body that self heals, it’s our job to get out of the way with easy to digest, simple foods. Water fasting is another avenue that should ONLY BE UNDERTAKEN AT TRUE NORTH. Intense detox can kill people. It has. Green smoothies are a slow and steady thing anyone can do without getting sick which is why it’s my blanket recommendation. And working with a nice doctor is great! Find one that is open to vegan diets. At the least, keep checking in to monitor your progress. Getting the all clear blood test is worth the funny looks. And doctors need to meet people like us too.
Do I need to buy herbs to heal?
RUN FROM ALL MAGIC BEANS SALESPEOPLE.
I have a $3000 cupboard filled with magical herbs, supplements and extracts which were going to fix me. None did. But the health store guy could afford first class.
The key is, does the person selling you the item say you HAVE to have it to get better? Because in my experience the only thing that does that is supervised water fasting at True North or a raw vegan diet or a juice fast like Joe Cross in Fat Sick and Nearly Dead.
We believe some herbs can be used in moderation to supplement a raw vegan diet, however the true healing comes from the body which is in turn enables by a high fruit, low fat raw diet. Therefore, you do not need them to heal. Some are as toxic to the body as an Rx according to Dr Fuhrman and some can be beneficial, which are usually the ones commonly used as seasoning or eaten by animals. The herbs we use aren’t bought at the store – we like eucalyptus tea (boil leaves), dandelion plants and roots, grass, parsley, cilantro, mint, purslane, nettles, lambsquarters and other wild edibles. Find a herbalist in your area and always be incredibly careful about picking wild plants. Bitter melon is a wonderful healing fruit available in Asian markets at low cost. Passionflower is useful for detox anxiety.
The ONLY thing that helped me for Lyme symptoms was the powder of the Haritaki fruit. It’s $8 on Amazon and it breaks down biofilms according to a smart high school student. It’s great! And I’m not selling it. Always try and get stuff whole, unlike Haritaki which has to be imported in a powder. Acai? It’s an expensive blueberry. Gogi berries? Superfad.
It’s the BODY that self heals at the end of the day. Everything we put in it either HINDERS or HELPS the process. Parasite killing herbs, things so potent you gag when they go down, just no. Haven’t seen anyone get better results on herbs than on a raw vegan diet. Garlic is nice topically but can rip up your stomach. That’s about as far as herbs should go. And no, herbs in alcohol aren’t a good idea. If someone tells you not to eat greens but buy my herbs, run.
Which supplements should I buy?
Surely if this diet is the right one for humans I shouldn’t have to supplement right? Well, yes it is, and unfortunately you do and you also need to go for annual blood tests. Wait WHAT?
Basically, we have become super weak as a species. Survival of the fittest has dropped away to everyone eating garbage and using drugs to stay alive. I developed B12, D3 and iron deficiencies… as a MEAT EATER! Basically we aren’t absorbing nutrients properly and those such as B12 and K2 which are synthesized by the body in the gut are derailed by things like antibiotics which we all take too much of (take only when serious monkeys!) which damage gut bacteria. Then not enough people know to take probiotics. Yadda yadda. The government has intervened by adding vitamins to cow’s milk, breakfast cereal and MOST processed foods. “Fortified” means added. They have added stuff to vegan food too. Nutritional Yeast has B12 added and so does soy milk, Kashi, etc. So when you go back to natural foods, you are missing out on the added vitamins but gaining so many from your food. You don’t need B vitamins other than 12 as long as you are eating enough bananas which are rich in them. Magnesium you will get from your dark leafy greens. Those with anxiety CAN buy “CALM” a Magnesium supplement… but we think it’s better to get such vitamins from greens. Whilst Folic Acid is toxic and linked with breast cancer, FOLATE from greens is incredible. You will end up with so many more nutrients and vitamins than someone on a cooked food diet.
Firstly, I recommend everyone start off with 6 months on a high quality probiotic. Simply because we have taken too many antibiotics and eaten way too much crap. Those wild animals don’t need probiotics as they weren’t eating Happy Meals and Doxycycline.
The raw vegan community is divided on supplements. As B12 and Iodine are not present in a raw vegan diet, it is advisable to supplement these two items if you plan on eating this way for over 6 months. The people who seem fine without supplements may just have large stores which take years to go down. Michael Arnstein “The Fruitarian” takes B12 because his annual blood tests showed it dropping. That’s a healthy guy. Now I think about all the people who come into this, already sick and depleted with low mineral stores, being told they don’t need B12. I’ve seen the end result of that, which has been hospital. Not people I have worked with, but people I have helped after the fact. Why not combine nature with science to make this SAFE diet?
Vitamin D is a hormone which is deficient in nearly all humans which is why it is stuffed into processed foods. A Vitamin D deficiency can lead to cancer and many other health problems. The kicker is many people can’t synthesize enough even when they live in Florida. The benefits of taking a D3 supplement if you do not live in the tropics greatly outweigh any concerns. Timing matters with Vitamin D, and it is best to take it at night. Some people say it works best when taken with K2 which is also lacking in a vegan diet. Some people can synthesize their own by having the right gut bacteria. Others can’t K2 and D3 are important for teeth! I bet you that person who tells you their teeth went bad on this diet weren’t supplementing K2/D3 and eating too much citrus, as outlined above as being a bad idea. 2 Brazil nuts once a week are great for selenium.
L-Glutamine is an amino acid that helps heal the gut. As many people come to raw diets with serious gut issues, L-Glutamine is non toxic and can potentially speed your repair. It also speeds healing after parasites are removed from the gut walls.
I have linked a few decent supplements in our RECOMMENDED PRODUCTS GUIDE but feel free to choose your own. Check reviews on Amazon to figure out what works best. Your doctor can also inject B12 and D if you aren’t absorbing properly.
Here’s an interesting article on B12 DEFICIENCY CAUSING DEATH by Dr Fuhrman. DHA is something we generate from Omega 3’s which I believe as long as you follow our guidelines on blending, chewing and juicing greens daily, you can avoid. Flax seed is a food Omega 3 source for those who can tolerate seeds (I use it as a powdered cheese sub) and PURSLANE (Google) is a wild weed that grows everywhere and contains massive amounts of DHA. In fact it’s the best source and most people just throw weed killer on it.
What do you guys think about probiotics?
Whilst a healthy animal would not need probiotics, many people who are unwell took many antibiotics over the years which leads to massive imbalances of gut flora such as candida. They also ate inappropriate foods which causes overgrowth of wrong bacteria. That’s all candida is actually. Everyone has it. It’s not an infestation.
A quality pill probiotic is recommended to get those who are trying to heal or not digesting food well back on track. Primal Defense and VSL3 are very effective. Fermented foods are high in sodium or sugar and in our personal experience, much less effective. Unlike digestive enzymes, probiotics do not replace anything that would be otherwise manufactured by the body. Certain strains of beneficial bacteria can be totally wiped out by antibiotics. It is recommended to do a course of 6 months to see permanent improvement. Fruit is loaded with prebiotics which greatly help digestion, but some people struggle with salad. Try the probiotics. Blending smoothies and raw soups is another important step if you have poor digestion.
If you are seeing undigested food in your stools it means you are not chewing – unlike breads and pastas which are water soluble, vegetables and plants are not. Chew everything until it is a fine paste. If not, blend it and chew it as it does down to mix in digestive enzymes.
What is oil pulling? Will my teeth fall out if I eat fruit? Why do I get UTI’s when I try fruit?
Oil pulling is a great way to clean and protect your teeth. A spoonful of coconut oil is best – swish and “pull” it around every part of your mouth, between the teeth and all around. Spit out into the trash, not your sink (it clogs pipes) after 10-20 minutes and rinse your mouth well with clean water. Once or twice a day is best. D3 and K2 vitamins support tooth health if anyone is worried, along with brushing lightly after meals other than citrus. Rinse with baking soda water after citrus. Always brush after dates or dried fruits which should only be a small part of a healthy diet.
I have NEVER met anyone with damaged teeth who wasn’t hitting too many acidic/unripe fruits and not enough activated greens. Barley Grass Juice Powder is great for teeth too. Did you know cows wear down their teeth and then reenamalize them? I have experienced this too.
All citrus fasts will kill your teeth. Not worth it. Avoid. Unless you are Anne Osbourne and growing your own,… don’t try it with fruit from the supermarket.
Keep in mind that detoxification should be done mindfully and most who say their teeth were ruined on a raw food fruity diet were responding to excessive acids coming out that way. Yes, when you go on a raw diet sometimes the body starts releasing stored acids. This is not something I would have believed if it had not happened to me. Our mouths are the beginning of the alimentary tract so if you feel like your body is releasing acids that might be affecting your teeth, drink baking soda a few times a day and rinse your moth with it along with regular brushing. We support a tongue scraper and no commercial toothpastes or mouthwashes. Oil pulling is crucial when detox is in high gear. That is when you really want to protect your teeth.
Which brings me onto the fake UTI’s. The ideal human diet is alkaline, matching how primates eat – with fruits, greens and small amounts of bark, nuts and insects. Grains, meat and dairy are acid forming leading to toxin and acid build up in the body. No, blood ph can not change, I am talking about stores of the stuff based on years and years of eating crap. Don’t believe the body stores stuff? They find traces of certain medicines months after the fact. Benzodiapenes show up in the blood up to 6 weeks later! Didn’t believe the acid/alkaline thing until it happened to me and that’s why we don’t recommend deep cleansing as strange things can happen quickly. But therefore, those who are sick may experience discomfort similar to a UTI as stored acids leave the body when switching to a natural diet. Baking soda in water, 4 times a day will get rid of this feeling in hours. Works for real UTI’s too. Avoid cranberry juice, only ever made things worse for me. Baking soda. keep some in the house.
Please address if organic is necessary in your view and why and why not thank you so much for sharing your experience with us!!
Natalie: Organic is a lovely choice for those who can afford it, however there are also substantial question marks surrounding how much ‘better’ it really is. It depends on how much you trust the USDA as a monitoring entity. Organic produce holds organic pesticides which aren’t completely non harmful. The produce is also sprayed in transit.
I don’t think anyone loves Monsanto or GMOs but both of us were too sick and out of work too long to buy organic produce. So we bought the cheapest stuff we could find and healed incredibly. I have eaten a cooked organic diet in the past and experienced no healing. Therefore I think it’s better to eat conventional bananas than organic rice.
Our position is therefore to do the best you can. Greens, berries and peaches hold the most pesticides as they are hardest to wash. Organic stuff has it’s own pesticides so wash both as well as you can.
The best option is to find local farmers or grow your own produce. In New Jersey, many small farms aren’t certified organic however don’t use much more than a little vinegar on their crops. Get to know the little guys, which is a key to helping your economy too. They are most likely to give you free stuff too as they get very amused by monkey monkeys. Growing your own can be done indoors in an apartment and if you have a yard you have no excuse! Start composting your many fruit peels and grow something. Someone you know will be able to help you. In the summer I don’t buy greens and simply use my own lettuce or blend grass and lambsquarters into green smoothies. Free food! Organic! 🙂
Abbey: Organic isn’t what most people think. The organic produce can be sprayed for transport the moment it hits trucks. The soil only has a two year resting period to be considered organic. Both Natalie and myself and countless others healed on the cheapest ugliest commercial fruit. We did the best we could and so should you. But being scared off by people who have a vested interest in keeping you fat, sick and nearly dead is not intelligent and you are worth so much more. You can look deeper into the commercial versus organic debates on youtube.
I personally think the Dirty Dozen lists are creepy, not based on data and I want to know who runs that organization and why. This is not information I have been able to trace. Which makes me suspicious. I buy organic when I can but I am washing everything. I am not pretending a unicorn sung to a rainbow and organic is pesticide free and “better” … I am not convinced. Personal experience is that commercial worked really well and continues to work well. No need to live in Fear.
Safest thing is to grow your own. Start planting apple trees, Johnny!
How to eat raw affordably?
Both of us are the cheapest of the cheap! We manage to only spend $5 a day in California on raw foods, and $5-$10 in New Jersey.
Make friends with local farmers, who will be thrilled to sell boxes of things. As stated, it is the cleanest produce around because it doesn’t have to be sprayed for travel.
Look through your neighborhood and make friends with the people with fruit trees. Most people will be happy to get rid of it. Foraging for wild weeds and fruit can be done anywhere. In New Jersey I found a wood full of wild berries, which are a wild raspberry variation. In tropical areas people find crazy things, from dates to mangoes. I found a whole wall of ripe passion fruits in Hawaii. The reality is most other people aren’t eating fruit or weeds and they are there for the taking.
Don’t be a chicken! Ask for free fruit!
Outside growing season dedicate an afternoon to visiting every grocery store in a 10 mile radius. Take a note of prices. Ask what they do with old produce. Would they sell it to you at a discount? Do they sell in bulk? In urban areas, Asian Markets and Mexican Groceries are a GOLDMINE – yes I even find organic produce lumped in with regular sometimes. Big supermarkets such as Trader Joes, Costco, Wegmans, Sprouts and ALDI can be very good. There will be small local markets with sales. Buy big and on sale! Avoid health food stores and Whole Foods if money is an issue. They mark everything up.
Shop by sales. Personally I go to 2-3 stores a week and just buy what’s on sale. A box of bananas is a cheap source of calories and Costco has a good price on even organic. Once you have your bananas, see what’s on special in your area. Think about how many calories it has. Berries are my favorite but I can’t sustain myself on them. Apples, oranges and watermelons are better staple foods.
If you are totally broke, go to your local foodbank! That is what it’s there for and unfortunately few people are that interested in the produce so it gets thrown away. Pride is never more important than your health. Ever monkeys!
Abbey: Grow as much as you can yourself. Forage, pick wild. Know your fruit trees! Know your neighbors who have fruit trees There is magic in being in the same sunlight as your fruit. Same neighborhood and fruit you pick is pretty darn magic.
Why don’t you eat oil? Isn’t coconut oil healthy?
As we can see from the following video by Dr Greger, coconut oil is NOT health food!
Fats, in general, as part of a maintenance or transitional diet should be consumed in WHOLE form. A coconut, an avocado or soaked nuts/seeds. Refined oils are not only empty calories, they have also been stripped of all the nutrients held in their original form. They have been heated, processed and purified.
Max Gerson found oils caused tumors to regrow in his cancer patients. Dr Fuhrman supports this view, as we now know that fat in the bloodstream causes estrogen to rise, increasing cancer risk. Colin Campbell and his peers, along with Fuhrman have linked diabetes to excess fat consumption. It’s just not a health food when it’s a refined oil.
The science supporting moderate or fat intake in diet is very poor, especially when people are wishing to lose weight. Even “healthy fats” will be stored by the body unless you are blessed with a very fast metabolism. Fat should always be under 10% on a raw vegan diet (1 avocado or a small handful of nuts a day) and for deeper detox, some people drop to no overt fats. Do yourself a favor and avoid the raw cakes, pizzas and nut/date based foods unless it’s a very special occasion. Some raw foodists like up to 15% fat. Everyone is different. But keep them whole and nutrient dense.
Finally, please never mix fruit/sugar and fat in the same meal – the fat interferes with sugar uptake into our cells which leads to sugars lingering in the bloodstream, growing candida and causing diabetes. Eat fats with salads, which actually helps you assimilate nutrients. Use seeds to make a dressing or throw avocado into a salad. But don’t blend avocado with fruits no matter how tempting it might seem… they are 77% fat. Try durian instead.
In deep healing – which is when we are eating mostly fruit and greens to heal a condition or kill parasites, it is best to consume NO overt fats for a period of time. There is a small amount of fat in every fruit and vegetable and most of us have plenty that the body can utilize. Fat feeds internal parasites according to several doctors who are open to the concept. If you’re not sure – try cutting them out for a week and seeing how fast you crave them.
Can you explain colonic massage, dry brushing and hot/cold shower therapy?
Abbey: Colonic Massage involves external rubbing of the belly basically. Rub your belly like a Buddha would! Extremely useful. Extremely simple. Super effective. You can follow the anatomy of the colon and you can also rub in circles, clockwise and counter clockwise. I use a back massager often on my belly to help dislodge things. At colonics clinics they often use a large massager called The Thumper. A great example is seen in the Movie, “May I be Frank,” which is currently free on Hulu. You want to find the sore areas under your abdominal wall, and work that colon. I also use percussion with my fists on my back, thru my hips to help break up any areas that are occluded.
There’s videos on youtube that can show you how.
Dry Skin Brushing is a technique to exfoliate the skin, our largest organ. It also moves the lymphatic system very effectively and so is a serious detox tool. So many videos on dry skin brushing on youtube. So easy to do. I do it daily before my shower. It’s very soothing and will give you excellent skin. Because it detoxifies the body it will also help get rid of cellulite. Cellulite is just fat holding toxins to protect you. Ugly, but effective. Dry skin brushing can be done any time. I like to do mine after I workout and before I take my 3-5 minute cold shower.
Contrast Showers, hot to cold. An excellent way to move the lymphatic system as well as work your way into the cold shower world. All you do is your normal warm water, and then blast the cold. The areas for brown fat are very metabolically active and respond well to cold water. They are at your back where your scapula (wing bones) are. Along the back of the neck. At the front of your chest, center, clavicles and both sacroiliac joints. You want to hit the areas where the brown fat is. If you google it, you can see anatomical diagrams of the brown fat locations.
Cold to Hot contrast showers will elevate endorphins, making you feel good. They will cause your heart rate to rise and then recover, very healthful.
Cold showers. I do 3-5 minutes each day of nothing but cold water. There is a “screaming” and “non-screaming version.” I like to not scream. So much energy! Straight up no holds barred cold. I have tremendous pain relief, endorphin release from it. It elevates my mood all day. Wakes me up. Makes me brave and strong. I am a Brave and Strong Monkey Monkey! So many benefits. I started with contrast therapy showers, but cold showers are my newest true love. It’s really only a matter of time before I am in the bathtub with ice cubes. I find tremendous relief in the cold. I am not saying it is easy, I am saying it is worth it.
Walking in Snow … Grounding with bare feet, all valid all useful.
Temperature therapy is useful! Bikram yoga, steam rooms, sauna, ice plunge, all very healing modalities.
How many calories should I eat?
Abbey: Well it really depends. I am not for stuffing down calories. I am not for force feeding or eating til it hurts. 1600-2600 a day is where I usually land. If you are working out, and hopefully you are, it can go higher. Breastfeeding Moms need more and a fat ratio of 15%. If you are breastfeeding be sure to find other raw moms to help guide you. The more you eat the more your body has to digest.
A few things. If you are gaining weight, that is something you really want to pay attention to. No, “Hang on your body will adjust,” for me thank you very much. Mixing cooked food and raw fruit is a bad plan in my opinion. Cooked food is dead food. Period. End of sentence. Takes awhile to accept this. Cooked food is poison and highly addictive. Eat cooked, look cooked. Eat dead, look dead. Eat raw, look vibrant. Live food brings life back into a damaged body, it heals.
Fasting should be undertaken when sick or when the body guides you to do so. If you are restricting calories, and starving, you could end up with deficiencies.
If you want to lose weight, limit fats rather than calories. Nuts and seeds make 70% of people put on weight. If fruit isn’t giving you the results you want or you feel you are gaining on an all raw plan, simply increase your intake of greens. They are filling whilst much lower in calories. Dinner should be a giant salad anyway, but you can do a salad for lunch too and less fruit. There isn’t a panacea for everyone but we do find with tweaking and determination, people lose or gain weight if they need to.
People who are UNDERWEIGHT are likely not absorbing their food. I would go all green smoothies for a few months, with a probiotic and L-Glutamine to heal the gut. Build up to at least 2000 calories. Eat 1/2-1 avocado daily last thing at nigh 2 hours after the last smoothie. Brings nuts and seeds back in at 90 days preferably blended as a salad dressing or well chewed. Fully Raw Kristina is a great resource for those trying to gain weight. It all comes back to the gut.
What happens if you don’t do an enema? Do I have to do enemas?
Abbey: No, enemas are merely a detox tool that should only be used if someone is comfortable with the idea and well researched on the topic. Colonics a few times a year, however, are a wonderful option as you are guided by a professional. Another option for colon cleansing for beginners is using the Blessed Herbs Colon Cleanse Kit (Ginger) which tastes good and when used on the “Best” option can help clear impacted waste.
Enemas are a way to get toxins out of the body faster, with no damage, adding moisture to the body. If the toxins are left too long they recirculate and that is a shame. Why work so hard to detoxify only to get stuck with elimination problems? If and when you are comfortable you can learn to do safe at home enemas. If you are never comfortable, that is ok. Do colonics maybe or slow your detox so you do not get overwhelmed.
The biggest argument we hear is that monkeys in nature don’t use enemas. Yes, they also probably didn’t eat processed food for 20-60 years. Changing your diet can hurt as the body cleans itself out and enemas are just an option to expedite the process.
How should I prepare for a detox eg. juice fast first? to get rid of parasites ·
First you need to transition slowly into a raw diet. Every step you make away from the Standard American Diet is a detox.
Abbey: I do really like juice fasting. I think it is fast and effective. The more alkaline your body becomes, the less hospitable to parasites it is. I lost a ton of moles while on juice fasting. Moles are parasites. They have a deep root into your blood stream. Moles will fall off as you detox and become alkaline and cut the fats to 90-5-5.
We would advise eating raw first and THEN trying a juice fast. Otherwise you may jump back onto pizza before establishing healthy habits.
What do you replenish yourself with after an enema?
I don’t feel there’s enough stripped away that I would need to replenish. The colon is pretty thick with sludge and garbage, pus and parasites. I regard enemas very much as a drink of water, for your butt.
Others take probiotics. You should do what makes you feel safest. It is important when working on your gut to feel safe and calm. It actually helps you cleanse if you are warm, safe and calm.
What order should I use to start and how long to do each step – ie fasting, juicing, enemas, MC, just raw, islands etc…
Abbey: I don’t think there is a perfect order. I think that your intuition will play into this a great deal. Juice fasting will have an end date when the tongue turns pink or the true hunger returns. Watching the tongue helps. Master Cleanse is a 10 day minimum to 40 days as a standard maximum. But there are people who Master Cleanse longer, all with chronic health concerns. Islands are variable. Most people say 30 days. But again, plenty of people go longer and shorter.
What parasite/heavy metal detox is best?
Abbey: Well the heavy metals are tough. Cilantro has a great reputation. Enemas are invaluable. For parasites I have used papaya seeds, and enemas. I’m not big on magic bean products. I traded my cow one too many times and the magic beans … were just beans. Anything that isn’t supposed to be in your system will die or be removed after long periods on a proper diet.
Give us a view on supplements, herbs, clay, sunbathing, natural docs, natural cleaners and personal products
Abbey: I take B12 sublingual, Floradix for iron deficiency, D3 at night. I will add in a brazil nut a week and take kelp occasionally. Don Bennett is the man for the supplement low down.
Herbs. Beware the magic beans. Anyone asking sick people to spend hundreds of herbs, is probably not a raw foodist. Probably doesn’t believe in Raw Food. Probably hasn’t tried an all fruit no overt fats diet. I think some herbs (singular) can be useful some of the time. But I believe herbs slow down detox used excessively and i see many people use herbs as a crutch while eating cooked food thinking that they will get well. Three years later …. still in the same exact place … not good. Things need to work fast. They should work fast. If they are not working there is no reason for you to stay loyal. Throw it overboard and lighten the load.
Clays. I have no clay experience. They freak me out. However Natalie has done Blessed herbs and LOVES that cleanse and one day I might do one of those kits … maybe.
Sunbathing … OMG yes! yes please be in the sun! Do not wash your skin for a solid two hours after being in the sun so your body has time to process the Vitamin D. I know so many chronically ill people who need the sun. Big yes, sunbathe. Don’t use sunscreen, use maybe some coconut oil if you need it. I do cold showers and skin brushing and do not seem to need coconut oil on my skin.
Natural Doc? Sure. As long as they are not trying to sell you things you do not need.
Natural cleansers? Vinegar! Yes! The more commercial products you can ditch the better!
Personal products. Natural soap for PTA. Baking soda for teeth. Coconut oil for oil pulling. Natural shampoo, and go as long as possible between washes, rinse with cold water after washing your hair. Avoid commercial products when you can. Buy vegan and cruelty free when you replace products.
Getting vitamins / minerals while consuming lots of mono-meals/ diets.
Abbey: The school of thought with mono meals is that you are getting enough vitamins and minerals. There’s a few videos on youtube that will break these numbers down for you. The other school of thought is that detoxification is not the same as building and growing. They are two very separate entities. The only exception might be the Master Cleanse which claims to detox and build at the same time. Possibly true, it’s a remarkable cleanse. Certainly unique.
How to find time for crunchy stuff while working/ raising kids.. Like fasting/ enemas/ meditating
Abbey: When you go 100% raw one of the first thing that happens is your body needs less sleep. I suddenly became a morning person. Turbo morning person starting at 4-5 am. Allows more time. Grouping working out with watching youtube videos on the lifestyle helps motivate and educate you at the same time. Follow a workout with skin brushing and adapt three minute cold showers? Love it! Prepare your food in advance esp your dinner. A big salad can await and will keep you outta the cooked.
Very few people have a life that allows them to have leisure as they detox. Multi-task!! Oil pull as you read a book on raw. The thing is if you have kids you want to get yourself as healthy as possible so you can care for them. Your oxygen mask needs to be on first. If Mama ‘aint happy, ‘aint nobody happy.
Doesn’t fruit feed candida?
If you read the 80-10-10 diet, you would have found a chapter explaining that fats are actually the root cause of diabetes and candida, because they hold fruit sugars in the blood stream. Most candida diets involve expensive herbs to “kill the candida” and wipe it out. As candida is naturally part of your gut flora, this mentality is not effective and usually ends in individuals doing a ketogenic diet for years in a War Against Candida.
To normalize candida/yeast go all raw, with leafy greens, fruits but NO FATS! AT ALL! For 3 weeks. You will feel awful and experience die off. This is normal. Your tongue will get very white as the candida dies. After 1-2 weeks your energy will come up. Follow this cleanse up with a LOW FAT, LOW COOKED FOOD diet or you will simply get the same over growth.
But I heard fruit killed Steve Jobs?
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