Welcome to my mostly raw lifestyle

Fruits and Vegetables

On this page you will find all the things about my mostly raw lifestyle. I am not prescribing this  way of living for anyone, but rather sharing what I am doing that may work for you, too. I will share recipes, tips and practices that are helping me to cure myself of cancer. Check out our first fall smoothie recipe below. 

If you are anything like me, you want to learn all you can and then share it. So, take what you can from here to use what will work for you and your body. If it makes sense, and especially if it works, tastes delicious and is truly healthy, share it. 

_edited.jpg

My Story

13 years ago I was diagnosed with Chronic Lymphatic Leukemia (CLL). It was a hard day in August. I was living in a 2nd story apartment building at the time, and though I was practicing yoga daily, I could not make it up the steps without my heart beating out of my chest. My lymph nodes were extremely swollen, and I was fatigued most of the time. I knew this was not normal, so I went to the gynecologist. Maybe I was pregnant, I thought. 
 

I was not pregnant, but I was dealing with what doctors would tell me was an incurable, chronic blood disease. With this information and for years, I have gone a conventional route, using chemotherapy, target therapies, and undergoing tests and all kinds of procedures from blood transfusions to bone marrow biopsies. There have been many side effects and trials along the way. 

Many ask me how I continued to stay positive throughout this, and what have I learned. These questions are not easy to answer in a sentence or even two, but I will tell you that positivity is an inside job. Though many people and things have been supportive, I have had to do my own work. My healing is up to me and no diagnosis or doctor tells me what my Creator and body can and can not do. That's just one, maybe it's more than one, of the powerful lessons that I've been offered.  I have learned a lot, and I am still learning.  My hopes here on this page are to tell you all about what I am learning and how you too might be able to make use of this information, too, cancer diagnosis or not.  

My body can heal and so can yours. 

So, recently I stopped taking the oral chemo that I was prescribed and started finding what was my mostly raw lifestyle. I am now a month into a holistic journey for my life. I am eating and living healthier. I am utilizing healthy whole foods, natural modalities and practices that are reminding my cells of their vitality. I am excited to share my mostly raw lifestyle with you here. 

Why mostly raw?

My diet is not completely raw, but mostly. I will eat cooked foods, but mostly, I will eat foods in their whole form. Lots of smoothies will be made. My lifestyle is not completely raw, but mostly. I am a work in progress. But I am going in with the help of the Spirit to listen and share the raw truth about my situation. As best I can, knowing that I am human and spirit, mostly, I will open to a new lifestyle. 

 

Interested in a mostly raw lifestyle for yourself?

 

Subscribe below. Use what I've learned and am learning, follow along, and share. And most importantly without additives, alterations, or exceptions, but rather in the most raw way you can, love yourself,  'cause the world needs your healthy presence in it. 

 Want to partner with Courtney along her healing journey?

Basket of Bath Accessories
Dry Brushing 

"Not only does it buff away dead skin, but it's fantastic at boosting circulation and lymphatic drainage, and ultimately ridding the body of toxins. Your skin is your biggest organ, after all." (Huffpost.com)

I have been dry brushing for years, but now that I am on this mostly raw journey it has become of increasing importance. Because the leukemia has attacked my lymphatic system, my lymph nodes will swell, mostly in my neck, but also in my groin and under arm. This can be startling on someone with a small build like me, but some people will find their lymph glands will swell when fighting an infection. They may even be sore. This is the body's normal response to fighting dis-ease. If your lymph nodes swell as your body fights bacteria or a virus, don't worry, you do not have to immediately assume that you have leukemia. However, I will tell you that one of the ways that I learned of dis-ease in my body is that the lymph nodes did not get smaller. If this is your case, seek advice from a trusted professional. 

 

Everyone can benefit from dry brushing, once or twice a week for a couple minutes before bathing. However, for me, I dry brush daily, maybe multiple times a day. When I dry brush, I can feel the lymph move, which gives me a renewed focus around my blood, circulation and moving out that which is not needed.

 

I have been told it is best for me to brush towards the heart. Still, as I learn more, for those who have healthy lymph it is best to consider brushing towards them, across the body or down towards the groin. Most of the time, I also take a shower afterwards (cold showers preferably, but one step at a time, right?!).

 

What a simple practice to support the body at dispelling toxins. All we need is a brush made of natural fibers and a hand. 

IMG_2432.JPG

Because we have so much food available to us all the time, it can be hard to know what we should give to our bodies. One way that I have found helpful to decide what to eat is to consider what is in season. In the summer when my body needs lighter foods, it never fails that something like strawberries are ready to be harvested. In the fall when I need something more hardy, it helps to see the root vegetables emerge. 

Our bodies are happiest when fed seasonal fare. When we eat this way, we align with Nature and her cycles and find a healthier state of being. So, I wanted to share another smoothie that will allow us to tap into one of nature's spectacular roots that are at their peak right now: the bloody beet.  ​I'm calling this Nature's Beet Treat Smoothie. Check it out and let me know what you think. 
 

Eating in season is one way that we follow Nature's lead. 

Pumpkin Spice Smoothie

This smoothie is great for fall, and your health. Its sweet, creamy and spicy goodness packs a powerful and filling probiotic breakfast, lunch or dinner punch. This recipe makes about 56 oz/ 7 cups, or more if ice is added. All listed ingredients are organic and blended in a Nutribullet on Extract and then on High.  

Carrots

1 chopped Carrot 

Carrots have calcium and vitamin K, both of which are important for bone health. Carrots are also a great source of fiber.

Pumpkin Seeds

1/4 cup Sprouted Pumpkin Seeds

Pumpkin seeds are highly nutritious, rich in antioxidants, aid in mood and high in fiber. These sprouted seeds are easier to absorb.

Fresh Mangos

1/2 cup chopped Mango

Mangos are a great source of magnesium and potassium and help stabilize the digestive system.

Green Apples

1 Gala Apple

(core in, skin on)

Gala Apples contain

vitamin c, potassium, fiber and quercetin, which provides antioxidant protection against the harmful effects of free radicals.

Slices Pineapple

1/2 cup sliced Pineapple 

Pineapples are loaded with nutrients, suppress inflammation, contain disease-fighting antioxidants and boost the immune system.   

Tea with Dates

3 Pitted Medjool Dates

This king of the fruits is high in nutrients and vitamins, and boosts energy. It  stimulates the immune system, reduces inflammation, prevents DNA damage, and improves hormone regulation.

More Pumpkin Spice Ingredients 

Please note: this smoothie is vegetarian, not vegan. Be sure that you consult your care team and use your intuition. If an ingredient I suggest does not work for your body, use another ingredient that does. 

Fresh Seeds

1 tablespoon Chia Seeds 

Chia seeds are high in fiber, rich in minerals, omega-3 fat, and antioxidants. 

Fresh Cow Milk

1 cup Oatmilk 

Oatmilk is high in nutrients, including calcium and vitamin B12, and those that strengthen the bones. Oat milk is also high in fiber. 

Cinnamon Sticks

1 tablespoon Cinnamon 

Cinnamon is rich in antioxidants and other beneficial compounds that fight cancer cells and balance blood sugar levels. 

Wild Berries

1/2 cup chilled Soursop Tea

Soursop tea is known to promote healthy digestion, prevent constipation, contain anti-carcinogenic properties, fight bodily inflammation, and stabilize blood pressure.​

Protein Yogurt

2 tablespoons Greek Yogurt 

Greek Yogurt improves bone health, and boosts metabolism, gut, and mental health. 

Ice Blocks

Ice (optional)

Though I do not recommend cold drinks as they slow down digestion, many people have an eversion to room temperature drinks. It's better to have the ingredients popping inside you, than not at all. If you need ice, add it. 

Nature's Beet Treat Smoothie

With only 6 raw ingredients, this seasonal treat is great for lunch when you need something quick and nutritious. All ingredients are organic and blended in the Nutribullet on Extract. Makes about 40 OZ/ 5 cups.

I also added some chilled soursop tea to my smoothie in order to get my daily dose as this is a part of my cancer fighting protocol. One thing I have found quite helpful on this healing journey is that you can add your "medicine" to the smoothie and make it even more beneficial to the body. Sometimes, you will barely even notice it there. 

Fresh Beetroots

1 Medium Beet

peeled and chopped

Beets help lower blood pressure, and are good blood and qi tonifiers. They are said to prevent cancer and are a good source of potassium and other minerals.

Protein Yogurt

2 tablespoons Yogurt 

Greek Yogurt improves bone health, and boosts metabolism, gut, and mental health. 

Blueberries

1 Cup Blueberries

Blueberries are heart, bone, and skin healthy. They support blood pressure, diabetes management, cancer prevention, and mental health.

Honey Jars

1 teaspoon Honey 

Honey is a natural sweetener used as an anti-inflammatory, antioxidant and antibacterial agent. 

Banana on yellow BG

1 Banana 

Bananas are rich in nutrients, improve blood sugar levels, support digestive health and are full of antioxidants. ​

Home Milk Delivery

1 cup Oatmilk 

Oatmilk is high in nutrients, including calcium and vitamin B12, and those that strengthen the bones. Oat milk is also high in fiber. 

Another Beet Banger 

What I'm about to say is about watermelon, but certainly if this is a beet banger, you must have a beet. I'll get there. 

 

I never knew how beneficial watermelon was till yesterday, literally. To me watermelon was about hydration and dessert at a cook out, but they are so much more than that. So while the small beet steals some of the watermelon taste and color in this recipe, the watermelon brings a whole bunch of goodness beyond its sweet water to the table (read about them below). I call this "Watermelon Beat" ( just a little play on words for you:)

 

Because I cut my watermelon the night before, I used that accumulated  juice in the smoothie. Also, because I had it in the fridge already, I add 1/2 of pineapple juice.  Though I didn't taste it; it was great to get in some of the pineapple's powerful digestive enzymes. Made 40 OZ/ 5 cups with all organic produce and seeds blended in the Nutribullet on Extract and then on Medium to finish. 

Halved Beetroots

1 small Beet

peeled & chopped 

Beets help lower blood pressure, and are good blood and qi tonifiers. They are said to prevent cancer and are a good source of potassium and other minerals.

Cucumbers

1 cucumber chopped

(skin on)

Cucumbers are high in nutrients, vitamins and minerals. They contain antioxidants, promotes hydration and lower blood sugar. ​

Ginger

1 inch Ginger

peeled & sliced 

It's not only deliciously spicy; It is loaded with antioxidants, encourages efficient digestion and brain health and, supports the immune system. 

Fresh Seeds

1 teaspoon Chia Seeds

Chia seeds are high in fiber, rich in minerals, omega-3 fat, and antioxidants. 

Sliced Watermelon

1 cup Watermelon 

Watermelon is no joke. They help you stay hydrated are packed with nutrients and beneficial plant compounds. They even have anticancer effects, 

improve heart health, reduce inflammation and oxidative stress. They may even help prevent macular degeneration, relieve muscle soreness and aid in providing vibrant skin health effects.

Indian Spices

1/4 teaspoon

Black Cumin Seeds 

Black Cumin seeds are used for its myriad  of healing properties. It is said to be able to manage pain, diabetes, paralysis, infection, inflammation, hypertension, and digestive tract related problems. Animal studies have shown that black cumin seed can stop the growth of tumor cells and reduce the incidence of tumors.

A cooked mostly raw lifestyle meal 

I love cauliflower. I just recently learned of a way to make it softer, so that eating it raw is more fun, too. Once I try that recipe, I'll be sure to share it. But because at least one of my meals each day is vegetarian and cooked, I wanted to share one here.

 

When I first started this lifestyle change, I knew that breakfast would be the hardest meal for me. I love eggs, all kinds of eggs. Like for real, if someone had told me that I could only keep one food item for the rest of my life, it would have been an egg.

 

So at first breakfast was sad, haha. A smoothie, lots of fresh fruit, or overnight oats or chia seed pudding which are not bad, but rather that are just not remotely like the savory goodness of an egg.  But cauliflower has saved the day with its savory taste and health benefits. If I am to have one cooked meal, I'll enjoy it with some cauliflower when it is available, for sure. 

Here is a breakfast meal that I am enjoying. I'm calling it "Cauliflower Power Hash." This recipe makes two healthy portions. I used 2 table spoons of coconut oil in a castor iron pan along with the ingredients,  in the order listed, to make perfection (at least by my breakfast standards).

 

Cook on medium-low heat and allow the garlic, onions and celery to become soft before adding the rest of your ingredients. I used Native Texan BBQ spice from my favorite spice shop: Savory Spice cause I like its sweet, salty, peppery, earthy flavor and added some nutritional yeast for a little cheesy flavor. Once plated, I sliced an avocado to add a perfect pop of color, health benefits, and raw goodness to the top and sprinkled on some Himalayan pink sea salt and fresh ground black pepper.  

Garlic Cloves

3 Garlic Cloves 

Crushed & finely chopped  

Garlic helps boost Your body's immune system, reduces high blood pressure and cholesterol levels. Garlic can also help with cancer prevention and has antibiotic properties.

Tomatoes

1 cup diced Sangria Medley Tomatoes 

Tomatoes are a major dietary source of the antioxidant lycopene, which has been linked to many health benefits, including reduced risk of heart disease and cancer. They are also a great source of vitamin C, potassium, folate, and vitamin K

Vegetables

Half medium Red Onion 

Red onions are antioxidant rich, fight inflammation and boost the immune system. Research mainly conducted in labs has shown that onions may kill a wide range of bacteria.

IMG_2496.HEIC

3 cups Frozen Cauliflower

"Purely Frozen" brand 

(about half of 1 bag)

Cauliflower is a cruciferous vegetable that is naturally high in fiber for digestion support and B-vitamins for mood. It provides antioxidants and phytonutrients that can protect against cancer. 

IMG_2492.HEIC
IMG_2495.HEIC

Praying over my food is a part of my mostly raw lifestyle. Before I eat, I place both of my hands over my plate. I thank everything that I can think of for the food before me. I ask that it be nourishing to my body. Sometimes, I chant "Sat Nam"/ Truth is my identity over it or pulsate my hands over the plate to send it the energy that I am looking for from the food. Since this is my medicine, it is important that I handle all of my food with care. I want it to have the best affect. Beginning the meal with prayer reminds me also to slow down to be present as I am eating and not just scarf it down. I try to chew everything till it is small peices (at least 20 chews before I swallow) as a great portion of the digestive process happens in the mouth before food even gets to the gut.

Green Vegetables

3 Celery Ribs 

Celery is a great source of important antioxidants. It reduces inflammation, supports digestion and is
rich in vitamins and minerals with a low glycemic index
and alkalizing effect.

Avocados

sliced Avocado

(to top dish)

Avocados are a source of vitamins C, E, K, and B6, as well as riboflavin, niacin, folate, pantothenic acid, magnesium, and potassium. They also provide lutein, beta carotene, and omega-3 fatty acids.

Mostly Raw Modalities 

Over the last couple months, I have met with an integrative specialist, a naturopath, doctors and specialists alike. I have sought modalities that I would consider raw. They are energy based and work on a subtle level. The mostly raw lifestyle is not just about food, but also about how I treat my vessel, what I expose myself to, and what I do not expose myself to. Below I'd like to tell you a little bit about some services that I am using to support my body and how I feel they are working. Let me know if you've tried any of these, and if so, tell me how they've made you feel. Also, let me know if you have questions.

Acupuncture close up

Acupuncture 

I have received acupuncture for years now. Before I lay down on the table, there is always conversation about what I am going through, past and present, and where I would like to go from here. When I lay down, the acupuncturist already knows what I would like to experience. I like to start every session with deep, clearing breaths and relax as much as I can. I tune into my third eye and open to surrender. I don't usually stay on the table, though my body does. I see colors, images, and travel to various places. I always feel relaxed when the session is over, and though one would think the needles hurt, only sometimes do you feel them, depending on where they are placed and how much you can relax. All my clothes stayed on, and I was covered with a thin blanket and left in the reclined chair for about 40 minutes. When the doctor came back to remove my needles and ask me questions, I felt renewed as my energy come back into my body. 

Alternative Therapy

Healing Touch 

I have experienced Reiki before, and though this was similar in spirit, there were things that I felt as this practitioner lay her hands on me in various places. For this I reclined on the massage table with my knees and head supported with a pillow. I started again with my breath and tuning into my third eye. She mentioned my chakras needing balance and used her pendulum to confirm. Then she told me that she was going to lay her hand on my feet, and we were off.  I saw multiple images throughout the session, like the image of a green snake, a green frog comping at the disease in my body, and my chakras looking like cups lined up in a row.  I heard names and felt several of my guides come to support my legs. Right before the treatment was over, I heard "Your cup runs over," and then the practitioner whispered in my ear to tell me that our session was over. She said she felt a lot of heat as she moved around my body, and said I have a lot to offer. She gave me homework, which I love. She told me, this week, "Watch the trees and the sky." I understood. 

IMG_2468.HEIC

Infrared Suana 

I love to sweat. I like hot yoga classes for this too, and if I was in a hot climate right now, I would be outside under the sun waiting for the sweat beads. To utilize the sauna is a "mostly" raw idea as it takes what the sun would naturally do and brings it inside. However, unlike ultraviolet light, infrared light helps cells regenerate or repair themselves. It improves the circulation of oxygen-rich blood in the body, promoting faster healing of deep tissues and relieving pain. The small glass room is lit with infrared lights, in other colors, beyond red, can be experienced to enjoy color therapy. The room gets up to 160 degrees. For 40 minutes, you can lay and listen to music, meditate or sleep if that is possible. I took the time to pray during my time in the space. My mind and body relaxed and my spirit felt at ease. I felt safe, which is really important to me, especially as I am healing. A couple times, I had to open the door and take a deep breath because it was so hot, but after I was done, I was given a cool eucalyptus towel and took a cold shower to rinse off (More about cold showers soon). The sauna allowed my body time to detox and also relax. It left me feeling nurtured, grounded and deeply connected to my body. 

Get in Touch

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • LinkedIn
  • Instagram

Let me know your thoughts about the recipes, or the information you find here. Do you find anything particularly tasty or nasty? Are you looking for alternatives or have questions about how to live a mostly raw lifestyle? 

I want to know!

Thanks for submitting!

Be the first to know

Subscribe to know more about my mostly raw lifestyle 

Thanks for submitting!