Like many of you out there, I was a skeptic when it came to the raw and wholly vegan lifestyle.
I had naturally cut back on meat consumption through the years, never was a big fan of it naturally. Now I cannot remember when I had a piece of meat, even through the last Holiday season, I side-stepped turkey and all the traditional roasts and did not gain the five to ten pounds most people do between Thanksgiving and New Years.
Also I had abandoned dairy, save for yogurt and cheese, about four years ago. I found that to be extremely beneficial to me. My biggest obstacle at fully going vegetarian was the fact I adored some cheeses, and loved Greek yogurt, using it as a sour cream substitute, smoothie base, sauce enhancer and dip maker. I still struggle with giving up those two dairy items.
There's a lot to take in with Mimi Kirk's first book, "Live Raw." She writes in such a wonderfully direct and informational style, much more than just recipes for making raw food dishes, but life lessons that reinforce what nature was telling me, especially observing my aging parents and their ailments, and the whys of them.
Mimi shares her first person experience and knowledge for preserving health, looks and well-being. If you are middle-aged, this is the time to begin. You must educate yourself to making better choices, eliminating smoking, drinking, and processed fatty sugar filled foods that only make your belly bigger and your energy levels drop.
Mimi is living proof her way works. She offers real information about the overall benefits of raw foods, the pitfalls of our western diet, and her ten steps for maintaining memory, mobility, independence, and beauty - which Mimi Kirk, at age 72 - is enjoying thanks to her efforts to eat better.
Mimi was married at age 17 and widowed at 29. She has been a vegetarian for 40 years, and took PETA's title of the Sexiest Vegetarian over 50, in her 70's! Also, Mimi and I share the same birthday, September 23, so I feel an extra kinship to her.
Mimi has carefully compiled her 29 Tips for Staying Young at Any Age. Mimi's advice, from getting your teeth cleaned often to keeping weight off, taking mental health holidays and celebrating your birthday for a month by doing good things for yourself is a great read. She is 100% right on every count. No one else is going to make sure you sleep, eat, love, live and dine well but you.
Time to turn off the autopilot and rip up grandma's creamed chicken casserole recipe. You can do so much better.
Raw foodists believe that living food in an uncooked state is the most nutritious food for our body. According to Mimi, cooking anything above 104 to 118 degrees Fahrenheit is believed to destroy crucial enzymes. Higher heats can also cause the formation of harmful chemical compounds, such as HCA's (heterocyclic amines) and glycation.
In "Live Raw", Mimi also gives great life lessons regarding clearing clothing clutter, something so many of us are guilty of harboring. We wear 20% of our total wardrobe 80% of the time. The rest is outgrown or out of style duds, emotional baggage and laziness.
Then, of course, there are the recipes accompanied by terrific photography and easy step by step directions. My first recipe made was her no cook banana Chia pudding made with Health Warrior Chia seeds I had been sent for review.
Chia is loaded with brain-boosting omega-3 fats, more than salmon, and are the same seeds you use on the clay Chia pets. The seeds become gelatinous when in almond milk, and with added mashed banana and some vanilla and a touch of agave, make a delicious creamy tapioca textured pudding to keep in the fridge when the sweet tooth attacks.
There is so much information in this book, and well presented.
Skyhorse Publishing Paperback Original
On Sale: June 13, 2011