Juicing for Beginners-Part I

I was first introduced to juicing about 4 years ago and have grown to prefer drinking my veggies and fruits over eating them, mainly because they surprising taste better as juice, but also because I am able to fully absorb more nutrients. Before I ever made my first juice, I read “21 Pounds in 21 Days” by Dr. Roni DeLuz. This book did a phenomenal job of explaining illness, how our bodies work, and how to restore our bodies back to an alkaline state. It also went into detail about her 21 day juice detox and came equipped recipes as well. Single handedly, this book is responsible for opening my eyes to the world of self-healing via honoring our temple with foods provided by nature, and I highly recommend that anyone interested in taking a proactive stance in their health make time to read this publication.

Cover of "21 Pounds in 21 Days: The Marth...

Cover via Amazon

I first became interested in alternative health during the process of my daddy being diagnosed with pancreatic cancer. When the doctors were reluctant to answer my question as to why/how a mass—as they refused to even use the word cancer at first—could grow inside a person’s body for years and that individual be totally unaware; I started conducting my own research and essentially learned that it’s because we consume “food” that our bodies weren’t created to digest. When our body is unable to properly break down what we consume, then the matter remains and sits inside of us, quite often turning cancerous, among other things.

I am often reluctant to have conversations with individuals about this because we are so programmed to believe that we can (A) take a magic pill to alleviate any health issue we have and (B) we can just pray about it and hope for the best. Both of these options exclude the acceptance of responsibility for the things we eat. We don’t want to believe we don’t have to get sick, because in the presence of this belief lies the responsibility of ceasing to eat what we’ve always eaten. No one wants to hear it’s their fault they got sick—that the years of eating all of the sweets, fast foods and processed foods have come to back to haunt us. Yes, the entity designed to regulate our food, and interestingly, also our drugs-the FDA holds some responsibility in ensuring that the “food” provided to us is safe, however when we learn that the bottom line of business is money and not health; we can’t continue to blindly push the blame.

Ok, this post was supposed to be about juicing because I’ve been asked by several people to give them some tips on how to get started, but in my quest to give some back ground information; I’ve gotten off on a tangent. Nevertheless, I hope the preceding information has helped someone or at the very least sparked enough curiosity that it propels you to conduct some research of your own to better understand the connection between what we consume and the alarming numbers of people who are getting sick these days.  If you are a patron of the “I gotta die of something” tribe, I beg you to change your membership, as I watched my daddy die a death so painful that I wouldn’t wish it on my worst enemy.

God didn’t create us to suffer. In life or in death. Love yourself enough to become informed and make the necessary changes. My eating is far from perfect and every day is struggle because deprogramming is a difficult process, however little changes here and there is better than slowly dying in ignorance.

I will write a part 2 containing some tips to get you starting with juicing.

 

Sincerely,

Shanika

 

loveyourself

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Simplicity

Wow….I haven’t blogged since August!!! This is mainly because I have dived head first into motherhood and quite frankly the blog took a back seat to my precious baby girl (understandably so). I have learned countless lessons throughout the last few months and I am excited to share them as appropriate.

One of the biggest lessons is to keep things simple. This is hard for me because I am Ms. Fabulous~LOL! When I initially started this blog, I had so many ideas and I could see the end game of where the blog would grow, and as a result; blogging became a burden. I couldn’t keep up with the demands of motherhood, person-hood  and the blogosphere. Therefore, I decided to take a step back and enjoy the journey, starting with me revamping the blog by taking away some of the pages I initially created. I am certain they will come back in time, but right now I need to focus on enhancing my writing, staying present in the moment, and allow growth to naturally unfold.

I am a big dreamer and an avid analyzer. This results in me creating a plan and an outcome in my mind. I also am able to see the different possibilities and I create a plan for the possibilities of outcomes that haven’t even happen. As you can imagine, my thought processes can become very complex, as I like to be prepared for each and every curve that may occur. One of my mottoes is “my back up plan has a back up plan.” One definite about motherhood is as soon as you have a plan in place, your baby changes, and you must adapt accordingly. Hence, a successful mother is one who is flexible, but most importantly; she has to be present or else she’ll awake one day and will wonder what happened and when did her baby become an adult.

That being said, while I know the blog will be successful and I know how it fits into my overall plan, I am stepping back and focusing on writing: plain and simple.

Not an easy feat for someone like me, but a necessary learning experience for someone like me.

I look forward to staying the course in keeping the blog current and I thank you in advance for following and engaging!

 

~Shanika

simplicity

 

Cry, Just Because

As the mother of an almost 5 week old, you can imagine the amount of crying I have to endure :).  She cries after I’ve exhausted every possibility of what could be wrong, which can be the most frustrating of all because as a parent; I instinctively want to wipe out all that is wrong and make everything okay for my baby. When she doesn’t stop crying, I wonder what I an doing wrong and in many ways, I feel like a failure as a mother. During one of our quiet moments (i.e. she was asleep-lol), I remembered a DVD that was given to me by the hospital entitled “The Period of Purple Crying” (additional information can be found athttp://www.purplecrying.info/sections/index.php?sct=1&).

Reading the information and watching the DVD helped me to understand crying as a natural part of an infant’s development. It gave me the validation I needed because it explained that babies cry, even when nothing is wrong. What a relief that was for me!!! After digesting that information, I wanted to soothe and comfort her even more because her cry and my responses to it are a natural part of our bonding and her growth in trusting I will be there whenever she needs me. Granted, I wasn’t ever going to stop trying to comfort her, but knowing I wasn’t doing anything wrong was a big weight lifted from my shoulders. I began to welcome her cries as opportunities to make things better, even though everything is already alright. What an amazing feeling~to make things better when nothing is wrong!!!

In analyzing the “crying for no reason” factor, I began to wonder why we as adults need reasons to cry? Why is crying often viewed as a sign of weakness? As refreshing and relieving as a cry can be, why must something happen first? We often wait until all of our frustrations are bottled up before we explode into a burst of crying. Or something incredibly remarkable must happen for us to cry tears of joy. Why cant we cry “just because” as a way to release or rejoice? I wonder if babies have got it right and perhaps we need to take a page out of their book.

Something to ponder.

Babies: The Great Hope.

It is amazing to me how many people are so happy about excited about my pregnancy. At first, I really only thought it was because they were happy for me to experience the joy of motherhood, however, this unborn child has sparked such intrigue that I began to look a little deeper and wonder why. Is it because I “finally” got pregnant? Is it because mothers know how much of a blessing children are and can’t wait for me to experience the same? Is is about the extension of a family’s legacy? 

 The more I thought about the conversations I’ve had with a variety of people, it dawned it me that babies often symbolize hope and new beginnings.  They elicit a wonderment that causes those around to speculate on what he or she will look like, the type of personality he or she will have, and what they will do with their life. Fortunately or unfortunately babies symbolize the unfulfilled dreams and spark an unstoppable drive to provide whatever it takes to nurture the best within that child, to ensure these dreams come to fruition this time around. A clean slate, a blank canvas on which the hopes and dreams for tomorrow can be sketched, carved, painted, created. For some, babies represent what could have been or what one longs for in life. The entering of a new baby into a family, even with the uniqueness that comes with each of God‘s creation, can be a reminder of a loved one no longer here. A way to receive a visit from a miniature version of what once was. A way to get back what was taken. 

Whatever the reasons may be, I feel fortunate that my unborn child has brought so much happiness and excitement to so many people. Ultimately, I feel blessed to be the vessel through which God can bring so much joy into the lives of those who are connected to me.

Mirror, Mirror

Why do we hate fat people?

Are we jealous that they just don’t give a cluck and eat whatever they want?

Are we jealous of their freedom because we are enslaved by starved, shallow pictures of how society says we should look?

Why don’t we want to see fat people naked? Why is that nasty to us? Is it self-hatred?

Do I not want to see your fat rolls because I can’t seem to look and see the beauty in my own nakedness?

Or do I really believe you are the scum of the earth and I wish you would exercise some type of self-control?

Do I wish you cared more about your health?

Is my hatred fueled by genuine concern?

Am I afraid I might be you someday, therefore if you’d show some sort of self-love it would communicate to me I too could love myself?

Are we mirrors of one another?

sunglasses

my eyes are the windows to my soul

so I keep them covered.

hiding my deepest thoughts and most intimate desires.

damn, if you only knew…

you’d not only gazed into the brown, you’d get lost

so deep, you’d find the pink and

you could speak my words and write my thoughts

into our bible, making them our word.

our bond,

unbreakable,

unable to be hidden behind tinted plastic framed in designer labels.

looking good on the outside,

disguising the ugly truth.

my true self, unknown to you.

withheld from you….

until you muster up the courage to pull back my blinds,

open up my gates,

and stimulate my mind, body,

uncover my soul.

but you chose to pull away, feelings surpassed.

and I chose to

keep on my sunglasses.