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MSM, also know by science geeks the world over as methylsulfonylmethane, is an organic sulfur compound made during the earth’s rain cycle. This miracle supplement when taken in the powder form really should be called “Botox in a bottle,” as it does wonders for anti-aging by boosting collagen production especially when paired with vitamin C. MSM is great for acceleration of healing of skin, joints, or connective tissues. Taking it as a supplement can be useful to those suffering from arthritis, leaky gut (helps heal lining of colon) and those looking to speed recovery from injury. Here’s an additional perk that comes with adding MSM to your life: it lays a coat over intestinal areas making it virtually impossible for parasites to attach themselves. When the parasites are unable to make their home in your body, they are flushed out of your system through the process of elimination.
Time and time again I have come back to MSM whenever dealing with an injury I want to heal. Most recently when my face was burned, I made sure to include MSM twice a day into my healing protocol along with my Heal & Glow Face Mask to accelerate the process. If you find your hair is breaking or nails are brittle, this is great supplement that will solve those issues and have you whipping your hair back and forth.
How to take it:
For best results using the MSM powder, added it to your water along with a source of vitamin C like lemon juice. Start with one teaspoon of MSM powder in 16 ounces of water, and gradually work your way up to 2 to 3 tablespoons per day to see some really impressive results.
-XO Raw Girl
Last Friday, the photo shoot for my forthcoming book was indeed epic! Can’t wait to share with you all. For the shoot I worked with a Sephora makeup artist who gave me a completely all-natural look using makeup that was vegan friendly, paraben-free, talc free, and cruelty-free. I was super excited to finally get rid of the last remaining makeup products I use often that contain questionable chemicals.
It was very refreshing to learn from the makeup artist I worked with how many vegan, paraben-free, and cruelty options are now specifically at Sephora. My two favorite vegan-friendly lines were Hourglass, which has a range of tinted moisturizers, foundation, powders etc. and Bite Beauty which has an awesome line of lip glosses and lipsticks in fun colors that are made from fruit and resveratrol. The Hourglass line is not entirely vegan, but they have a large number of options so if you go to purchase inquire with the sales rep.
Frankly we need as many cruelty-free, vegan, toxic chemical free options as we can get, until the cosmetics industry has the epiphany that it is not okay to sell beauty with the added health risk of exposure to toxic substances daily. Just like we are what we eat, we are what we put on our faces. Did you know that the makeup industry is generally unregulated? So the only person who can truly look out for you when it comes to cosmetic products is YOU. Do your research. If you have not done so just yet, take a moment today and look through your makeup bag. Google any long fancy words you don’t understand, and really consider if using that product is worth the risk. Makeup is a wonderful thing, it can enhance naturally beauty and help us feel our best but in this toxic world we live in we have to be vigilant. If we can’t get access to toxin-free cosmetics, it may be best to just rock our natural vegan glow. -XoXo Raw Girl
I’m sure you have at some point in your life heard the saying: “you are what you eat.” If you truly take that statement to heart you realize that with every meal you have the opportunity to reinvent yourself; the nourishment you choose can either fuel your body or leave you feeling and looking like you’re running on empty. When considering optimal health, we have to think about food for the mind, body, and spirit. We all want to feel beautiful or appreciated for the uniqueness that we are but beauty is much deeper than a pretty face. True beauty could be considered the fullest most energetic expression of one’s soul. Below are some simple ways you can step into your true beauty and fill yourself up with spiritual and physical nourishment. -XoXo Raw Girl
Eat Whole, Unprocessed Foods. If you are what you eat do you want to look like a stale bag of salt encrusted potato chips? Or would you prefer to radiate the energy from a fresh bowl of organic leafy greens? Sounds like an easy choice, but sometimes our taste buds get the better of us. Nowadays it is more important than ever to know that what you are eating is actually food, because the majority of packaged and to-go meals out there are full of chemicals, preservatives, harmful additives, or even hormones. Consuming these toxins does not only diminishes your outward appearance, it also has a direct effect on your emotional stability and joie de vivre.
Get Your Beauty Vitamins In. Food is one of the most powerful tools we have at our disposal to alter our physical body, increase our magnetism, and boost our overall sexy factor. As David Wolfe so eloquently sums up in his book “Eating for Beauty,” there are a number of nutrients that are essential for maintaining and cultivating an attractive appearance including vitamin A, C, E, silicon, sulfur, and zinc. In addition to these you’ll want to make sure you get enough magnesium, manganese, iron, and B vitamins which are all essential for the proper functioning of metabolic pathways that convert our food into energy.
Embrace Silence. Meditation, in whatever form you choose to practice, is the ultimate food for the soul. Not only is meditation a stress reliever, it can actually boost your mental performance. Research conducted at the University of California, Santa Barbara found that college students trained in mindfulness performed better on verbal reasoning sections on the GRE and also had improvements in retention of material. The outcome of the study suggests that mindfulness improves overall cognitive function. In addition meditation helps to balance out emotions and moodiness, and has been shown in numerous studies to reduce the risk of depression.
Do Yoga. Not only is yoga is healing modality that can help release bodily toxins, improve flexibility, boost your immune system, and improve blood circulation, it is another incredible way to give your soul the food it needs. On your mat as your learn to focus, breathe, and move through challenges without letting your mental chatter get in your way, you slowly but surely free yourself up to be the fiercest most beautiful version of you, outside in the real world.
Pursue Your Purpose. When someone contracts a serious illness or chronic disease, they expect their doctor to prescribe medication, and if their lucky some lifestyle changes. Often times in addition to those recommendations, the best prescription is to simply find what you love and do it daily. It is far too common to find ourselves living a life that is not our own and neglecting our true passions and calling. To be the best, healthiest version of you, find what it is that makes your heart sing and do it NOW. Not next week, ten years from now, when you have more money etc. When you love what you do and are walking in your purpose you will be happy, and a good dose of happy is an essential ingredient for optimal health.
Want to get your vegan glow on just in time for spring? The 7 Days of Raw challenge begins on March 1st! Like the Facebook Page for details and updates.
Welcome to the all new Raw Girl site! Huge thank you and much love to all of you who supported the campaign to upgrade the site, will be contacting you soon about perks. I am ecstatic about this new phase and all of the wonderful contributors on board to add some additional flavor to the content. To celebrate I’ve taken my juice photo shoots to the next level and partnered with Puree Juice Bar. They are based in Bethesda and also just opened up a new location in DC inside of Mint Health Club at 1724 California Street NW. If you are local to the area, go support them and try their delicious juices or one of their amazing cleanse packages and tell them Raw Girl sent you!
The theme of the shoot is “Make Your Health Your Best Accessory.” So often these days we rely on “stuff” to make us look and feel good. Whether it’s the latest fashion trend or smart phone gadget we are programmed to find the next best thing we must have. This can become a vicious cycle of insatiable consumption unless we learn to stand in a centered and grounded space within ourselves knowing that who we truly are is powerful, whole, spirits, who have everything within us that we truly need to thrive.
I used to be a fashion designer and while I was studying I came to the conclusion that for me, fashion was more than dress. It encompasses your world view, self concept, and goes beyond clothing. Health is an accessory that many people do not have the luxury of flaunting these days. The media has taught us to make things like alcohol and cigarettes our accessories, to up our cool factor. Well, it’s a new day, and the cool kids are wearing their vegan glow and toting their juices on the way to yoga proudly. I hope that this site will inspire you to join the club, and start focusing on creating the healthiest, most gorgeous version of you, starting from the inside out: mind, body, and soul. If true health is wealth, I want to be a billionaire. Who’s with me? -XoXo Raw Girl
Last weekend had a blast speaking at Everlasting Life Cafe in Maryland about my book “The Acne-Free Diet.” For those of you who are not in the DMV and missed this wonderful event, here’s a short excerpt from the talk. Unfortunately you can’t see my slide show with it, but I’m sure you’ll get the gist. Please pass it on especially if you know anyone suffering with skin issues. More people need to get hip to the fact that beating acne is an inside out game. We are what we eat, and one of the beautiful aspects of living is that we have at our fingertips the power to transform our bodies’, our skin, and our health at any moment, just by eating to live. The new version of the book is now available and combines all of the previous information along with a 3 Day Detox, and some extra nuggets of wisdom so that you have simple practical ways to begin your journey. -XoXo Raw Girl
To learn more about the book and purchase the new edition, visit here: http://rawgirltoxicworld.com/the-acne-free-diet/
In about seven years or so, Kombucha has gone from a relatively obscure tea that raw foodists and other health enthusiasts drink to a super tonic touted by a wide range of companies that have taken over the refrigerated drink sections of natural food stores. Now you can easily find kombucha in original form, and every flavor from goji berry to ginger. If you know me well, you know I live for kombucha. I cannot remember who for the life of me introduced me to it years ago, but since then I’ve been hooked. When I’m in Raw Girl mode and tapped into all my vegan superhero powers, kombucha is an essential part of my diet that is non-negotiable because it always helps to bring my body back to balance, and keep me energized.
Kombucha has been around since ancient times and there are many stories on where it may have originated. One common thread is that it began in China during the Qin Dynasty and eventually spread to other regions including Russia and Eastern Europe where it is called “kvass.” There are variations of kombucha called by different names also found in Siberia, Tibet, Germany, Japan, and India. The word kombucha is Japanese and literally means “kelp tea” but it is actually a fermented tea made using a bacteria and yeast culture that resembles a mushroom. Kombucha is a metabolic enhancer which helps the organs to function optimally, probiotic that supports beneficial bacteria, adaptogen which balances bodily functions, and detoxifier. This bonafide health tonic contains a wide range of organic acids, vitamins (including vitamin C), enzymes, and B vitamins that provide the body with energy, help to process fats and proteins, and are vital for normal functioning of the nervous system.
Although it has been around for ages, there have been no clinical trials conducted on humans to support its purported health benefits. However, some studies conducted in rats have proven that the claims of kombucha drinkers are not completely unfounded. For instance in 2000, a study reported that mice that drank kombucha for three years lived on average at least twenty-six days longer than mice who were without it. In 2001, another study showed that drinking kombucha for fifteen days protected rat’s livers from the toxic effects of acetaminophen, a common pain killer. And later, in 2003, another study showed that kombucha reduced DNA damage in rats exposed to lead.
In addition to the immediate positive effects it has on energy and digestion, kombucha promotes elimination, weight loss, and a healthy vegan glow. The recent issue plaguing kombucha brewers is that because of the small amount of alcohol in it from the fermentation process (around 1% alcohol), in some areas businesses are now being required to have a liquor license to serve it! This in my opinion is absolute mayhem, especially considering how easy it is to get a million and one other drinks and foods that can ruin your health and vitality. Anyhow, if you manage to get your hands on some good kombucha, it can change your life. I met and interviewed a kombucha brewer in Virginia for my radio show, who began brewing it when his wife lost the majority of her intestines and was having constant urinary tract infections. At the time she was being fed through a tube. He started brewing his own kombucha and fed it to her through the tube. She recovered slowly but surely and to this day she’s been out of the hospital and is moving around on a walker! I met her myself. Once he began selling his kombucha locally the results were astounding and the news of people being healed from everything from skin issues to chronic fatigue to high cholesterol started pouring in.
The world over kombucha has been known to help with a wide variety of acute and chronic conditions including arthritis, digestive disorders, high blood pressure, poor circulation, high cholesterol, cancer, eczema, acne, allergies, and chronic fatigue syndrome. So what is all this hype about? Kombucha is not necessarily doing the healing; what is does is help to being your body back into balance so it can heal itself! Below is a long list of additional reasons why drinking kombucha is great for your health. If you are dealing with candida or yeast overgrowth, are pregnant, or dealing with a disease that seriously compromises your immune system you should not drink kombucha or at the very least should seek the consult of a doctor or health practitioner before doing so. You can brew your own, buy it local, or find it at a health food store. When you find that magical brand, stick with it. The most powerful brands I have ever tried have always been locally made. ~XoXo Raw Girl
- Promotes and helps healthy bacteria in the gut to thrive
- Detoxifies the liver
- Alkalinizes the body and balances internal pH
- Improves digestion and alleviates constipation
- Assists the body in building connective tissue
- Boosts energy and can help relieve chronic fatigue
- Reduces blood pressure
- Relieves headaches and migraines
- Reduces kidney stones
- High in antioxidants therefore great in preventing cancer
- Lowers glucose levels
- Aids in healthy cell regeneration
- Heals skin issues including acne, eczema, and psoriasis and promotes a youthful glow
Irish moss is a seaweed packed with nutrients that can be soaked and used to create a powerful and nutritional gel. It is pretty much colorless and tasteless which makes it great to add to a wide range of dishes for nutritional value or just as a thickener. You can add irish moss gel or paste to smoothies, soups, desserts, and even as a partial replacer for some fattier foods like nuts or avocados in certain recipes to reduce the fat content. I was recently reminded of this moss’s superpowers when speaking to someone who may be having surgery soon. After a car accident a few years back that severely affected my lower back, I made smoothies with irish moss, and found that it helped to speed my recovery.
Like many other seaweeds, irish moss has an extensive nutritional profile which includes vitamins A, B, C, D, E K, B-vitamins, sulfur, protein, bromine, beta-carotene, calcium, iron, manganese, phosphorous, potassium, selenium, zinc, and pectin. As nature’s only plant based source of thyroid hormones, it can help to balance out thyroid related issues and speed up metabolism. It has been reported to be effective against everything from cancer, radiation poisoning, obesity, and cholesterol build-up. Sometimes I.M. gets a bad rap because it is the seaweed that carrageenan is extracted from (which causes inflammation and is used as a stabilizer in things like nut milks); but truthfully they are not the same. In its whole form and taken with proper moderation irish moss can boost your overall nutrition. Jamaicans have been known to consume irish moss or sea moss because of its reported abilities to boost male libido and increase sperm count. Below are some additional perks that come with incorporating irish moss into your diet. -XoXo Raw Girl
Accelerates Recovery. Irish Moss is great for strengthening connective tissues which makes it excellent for recovery from strenuous exercise, or even more extreme injuries, surgeries, or invasive procedures.
Promotes Gorgeous Skin. On the beauty front, irish moss can deliver a serious beauty boost because of its high sulfur content. You can apply the gel directly to your skin for a mini face lift, or consume it as a food and allow the nutritional boost to up your pretty factor. Irish moss can help to rehydrate dry skin, and leave it feeling smooth and supple. It is also effective on a number of severe skin disorders, including eczema, psoriasis, bad sunburns, and rashes.
Encourages Healthy Digestion & Elimination. The fiber content in Irish moss makes it a mild and effective laxative; simultaneously it soothes inflamed tissues of the intestinal tract which provides relief for intestinal disorders. In regard to promoting good digestion, Irish moss’s demulcent properties soothe the mucous membranes of the digestive tract and the gelatin-like content helps to ease gastritis, dyspepsia, nausea, heartburn, indigestion, and can be used to prevent vomiting.
Helps to Drop Those Extra Pounds. Irish moss is thought to help reduce the appetite by virtue of its ability to absorb moisture, increasing its volume and filling the intestinal tract with a bulking-type material, increasing the feeling of fullness and also aiding in the elimination process of waste through the gastrointestinal tract. Taking the moss improves thyroid function because of it’s iodine content, which in turn boosts metabolism, increases energy, and can help accelerate weight loss.
Cure for Coughs, Respiratory Issues, & the Common Cold. Because Irish moss is an expectorant it can break up mucus and help clear out the lungs of any phlegm that builds up with a common cold, alleviate inflammation of the nasal passages, ease sore throat or dry coughing, and also can treat other respiratory problems such as bronchitis and even pneumonia. It is especially effective for pulmonary (lung) complaints with its ability to absorb liquid and eliminate it from the body.
Assist with Healing of Radiation Poisoning & Cancer. Irish moss has been found to be very helpful with the recovery of radiation poisoning and cancer. Apparently it can actually absorb toxins from the bowel and this gangsta seaweed literally draws radiation poisoning out of the body.
Perhaps parsley doesn’t get much attention because it is used frequently as a garnish. Despite the fact that a lot of people think if it as side fare, this power herb can do more wonders for improving your health and giving you a radiant glow than your main course. Parsley is rich in vitamin A which is a power beauty vitamin, and helps to clear blemishes and maintain an even skin tone while also cleansing the urinary tract, liver, and kidneys. It has a high vitamin C content which helps to stimulate the production of collagen and reduces fine lines, scars, blemishes, and pore size, all at a severely discounted price compared to Botox. Parsley also has high levels of vitamin K which can improve skin elasticity and speed up the wound healing process and is extremely chlorophyll-rich which increases blood flow and metabolizes oxygen in the body. Like many raw vegetables and fruits parsley is rich in antioxidants which rid the body of free radicals and slow the aging process. Not bad for a garnish, huh? One of the best ways to harness the power of parsley is to juice it in combination with other veggies. Several of the recipes in my detox plans contain parsley because of its super power ability to cleanse and boost beauty. If you have not yet tried juicing parsley I highly recommend you experiment with different combinations and find variations you love. -XoXo Raw Girl
For 21 awesome original juice recipes, a detox calendar, a detox guide, and shopping list, check out my 7 Day Detox for Beauty, Weightloss, & Rejuvenation.
Beets are packed full with nutrients that are essential for healthy glowing skin! They are blood and liver cleansers, and if you have read my e-book The Acne-Free Diet, you know that when curing skin conditions cleansing your blood is key. Beets are very powerful and potent so its best to never use an entire beet in one juice. Their potency comes from the oxalic acid in them which helps to dissolve inorganic (bad) calcium deposits in the body. Because of this, consuming raw beet juice can help with the reversal of diseases like arthritis, heart disease, cancer, eye problems, varicose veins etc. which are all related to calcification–the accumulation of calcium salts in a body tissue. To sum it up: beets are very powerful. When calcium deposits are dissolved in the body, heavy metals, toxic chemicals, and even viruses are released, so it’s important to use the power of beets in moderation.
If you have oxalate-containing kidney stones or have had them, do not drink juices with beets. Beets are anti-inflammatory veggies that are rich in iron, potassium, niacin, copper and Vitamin C, in addition to manganese, magnesium, calcium, zinc, folic acid. Each of these nutrients are essential for beauty. Beets are very rich in iron, containing around 14% of the RDA and can help with the reversal of anemia, detoxifying the liver, combating high blood pressure, and lowering bad cholesterol. Not bad for a root veggie, huh? The best way to harness the power of beets is to consume them raw or juice them in combination with other veggies. You should never drink beet juice alone. I recommend sticking with a half of a large beet or juicing one small beet so you do not O.D. and overwhelm your body. If you prefer not to juice beets they are also great sliced or grated into salads. Whatever method you choose, keep beets in mind when you are detoxing, they are one of the veggies I pull out of my vegan superhero arsenal when things get serious. -XoXo Raw Girl
For more powerful beauty boosting juice recipes, check out my 7 Day Detox for Beauty, Weightloss, and Rejuvenation.