Monday, June 28, 2010

June 2010

Here is a life update for June 2010:

Going Away Party!
Since my departure date is drawing near, we had a combination going away party / birthday party for me in Nashville. Here are just a few pictures of the party that I thought you may enjoy:

me and timmy <3
me and becky, one of my favorite people!
me and tim in da pool
fruit platters!
summer salad featuring corn, red pepper, & avocado w/ cilantro
wilted kale salad!
fruit platter!
mango pie #1
Mango pie #2
And for the record, the mango pies were scarfed down within minutes. People go crazy over this pie.... and it is SO SIMPLE! I recently posted a mango pie recipe here, but i simplified it a bit.

dates, mangos, and any fruit to decorate the top
1. puree dates and a tad of water in a food processor until smooth. Thickly coat the bottom of a pie pan & put in freezer to set.
2. cut & freeze mangos. Puree in food processor until smooth (creating mango icecream) - spread into pie pan, above date crust.
3. decorate with fruit (such as bananas and berries)

Tim and I have been going on bike rides lately as a cross training cardio workout.

tim and i riding in the park, taken with a fish eye lens
stretching @ the top of the hill
doing a little yoga and core workout
Chattanooga Going Away Party
The Chattanooga going away party was significantly shorter but still full of good people and great fun.
Tim and I have been doing a little art lately.
tim working on his masterpiece
oil pastels
art mess!
drawing on cardboard
making hand-made flyers for tim's show
splattering paint! (making hand made flyers)
The result of the hand made flyers:
tim, me, and jonathan chillin in our messy, artsy apartment
New Puppy!
I'm currently back in Nashville, where my dad just got a new puppy! His name is Charlie and he is a little cute fluffy mutt! I love him already!

what a cutie!d'awwww!!!!

What have YOU been up to!?

Friday, June 18, 2010

Raw Fruits and Vegetables: The Diet for Humans?

Raw Fruits and Vegetables:
The Diet for Humans?

As children, we have all learned about many species-specific diets. We learn that lions and tigers are carnivores and they eat animals. We learn that cows are herbivores and they eat grass. We learn that birds are granivores and they eat seeds and grains. These are foods that they are biologically designed to eat! Their whole bodies are made for these types of food. They are attracted to their food in its raw, uncooked, unprocessed state, as nature intended.

Have you ever thought about what humans are biologically designed to eat? Well, we all know that you won't find processed hamburgers and french fries in nature! Not to mention, you won't find soda and chips growing out of the ground or Cheetos falling from trees! So how do we figure out the species specific diet for humans? We can take a look at our senses, compare humans to other animals, and use simple logic to figure it out.

Animals in nature are completely attracted to their biological diet in its raw, uncooked, unprocessed state. Carnivores salivate when they see their prey walking in a field. Do you salivate when you see a cow grazing in a field? Do you fantasize running up to it and ripping open its flesh with your bare hands? Do you crave to gobble up the warm, bloody guts? Or do you find ripe, colorful fruit appealing on an empty stomach? Do you crave a juicy, luscious piece of fruit picked straight from a tree? I'll let you decide.

The truth is, there are many differences between humans and carnivores. Many people think that a carnivore is simply an animal that eats mainly meat. However, there are many other characteristics that define a true carnivore. Below is a chart of characteristics that compare humans and carnivores. They are derived mainly from Dr. Graham's book, The 80/10/10 Diet:




Two hands and two feet; walk erect

Four feet; perform locomotion using all fours


No tails

All carnivores have tails


Smooth tongues

Rasping (rough) tongues


No claws


Opposing thumbs

Opposing thumbs

No opposing thumbs


Give birth to one or two at a time

Give birth to litters

Colon formation

Convoluted colon

Smooth colon

Intestinal length

12 times the length of the torso

3 times the length of the torso

Mammary glands

One pair mammary glands on chest

Multiple teats on abdomen


Two thirds of every 24 hour cycle are spent actively awake

Rest and sleep for 18 to 20 hours a day

Microbial tolerance

Little tolerance; deadly

Can digest large amounts of microbes


Sweat from pores on entire body

Sweat from tongues only


Full spectrum of color

Do not see in full color

Meal size

Fruit fits in hands, a few pieces will suffice for a meal, there is no waste

Eat entire animal when they kill it


Suck water with lips

Tongues protrude outward so they can lap water


Discoid-style placenta

Zonary placenta

Vitamin C

Essential nutrient found in food

Produce their own vitamin C

Jaw movement

Grind food; unique to plant eaters

Have no lateral movement in their jaws

Dental formula

2 incisors, 1 canine, 5 molars

3 incisors, 1 canine, 5 to 8 molars


Canines” are primarily flat, for mashing food

Canines are long, pointed, and sharp, for biting into flesh

Tolerance for fat

Do not handle large amounts of fat well

Thrive on a high-fat diet

Saliva and urine pH

When healthy, Alkaline saliva and urine

Acidic saliva and urine

Diet pH

Preferred foods are alkaline-forming; high amounts of acid-forming foods are deadly

Thrive on a diet of acid-forming foods

Stomach acid pH

pH level of the hydrochloric acid that humans produce in their stomach generally ranges about 3 to 4 or higher

Stomach acid runs in the 2s and is at least 10 times stronger than that of a human. (It can be 100 or even 1,000 times stronger)


Secrete none; must neutralize this strong acid with alkaline minerals such as calcium.

Secrete an enzymes called uricase to metabolize the uric acid in flesh

Digestive enzymes

Produce ptyalin -aka amylase- to initiate the digestion of fruit

Do not produce ptyalin and have different digestive enzyme ratios

Sugar metabolism

The glucose and fructose in fruits fuel cells without straining the pancreas

Cannot handle sugars well

Intestinal flora

Different bacterial colonies living in intestines; the ones that are similar (such as lactobacillus and e. coli) are found in different amounts

Different bacterial colonies living in intestines; the ones that are similar (such as lactobacillus and e. coli) are found in different amounts

Liver size

Smaller livers

Proportionately larger livers


Particular about the cleanliness of food

Least picky; will eat bugs, dirt, organic debris, and other items

Table1: Humans vs. Carnivores (Graham).

If humans aren't carnivores, what are they? Well, humans are classified as anthropoid apes. Since primates are cousins to humans, the primate diet may reveal clues to the biological human diet. The closest relative to humans are bonobos. They have up to a 99.4% DNA match to humans. They are frugivores and eat mostly fruits, greens, young shoots and buds. Less than 1% of their diet comes from animal products such as insects, fish, and small animals. Even when they do eat animals on occasion, they gobble up the raw bloody flesh with their bare hands. My guess is that most humans would not find this appealing! Bonobos thrive from a diet that mainly consists of uncooked, unprocessed fruits and vegetables. They never consider cooking, seasoning, or altering their food in any way. Since humans are so closely related to them, it would only make sense that humans should also eat this way.

So, is it really possible for humans to survive on a diet mainly consisting of fruits and vegetables? Yes. Not only can humans survive but they can also thrive! Many people around the world are eating this way.

Here, I answer a few frequently asked questions:

So what exactly does your diet consist of? I eat uncooked, unprocessed fruits, vegetables, nuts and seeds.

Why don't you eat cooked food? When food is cooked, the enzymes, vitamins, and minerals are destroyed. Just think about what fire does to something. You can only imagine what it is doing to your food. It changes the molecular structure, denatures the proteins, oxidizes the fats, and kills the nutrients. No other animal cooks its food and no other animal has as much disease as humans, which is mainly diet-related. Coincidence? I think not.

Why did you start this diet? What inspired it? Well, I was trying all sorts of different ways of eating throughout my life and I never really felt exceptionally good on any of them. I am an athlete and I wanted a diet that would allow me to perform at my peak all the time. I used to live off of ice cream and pasta so anything would have made a change! I heard about this diet when I went vegan. My friend told me about it and then I looked it up online. I remember that as I was reading about the raw vegan diet online, I became addicted to the information. I sat at my computer for hours researching and everything made perfect sense to me. It was the most logical diet i've ever heard about and I starting eating this way the very next day! I got very inspired by other people doing it online and all the information I read about really sparked something inside me that has kept me doing it for over two years now!
What are some benefits you have received while eating this way? I have received endless benefits. I have experienced improved digestion, insanely increased energy, healthy weight loss, smooth skin, and increased happiness. I have friends who have cured diseases such as cancer and diabetes from this diet. I have also let go of many negative attributes that went along with my old standard American diet. I no longer get sick, have headaches, or get bloated. I have also cured depression and I've never felt better in my life!
Do you get all your nutrients on a raw food diet? Yes! am eating the most nutritional foods on the planet. The reality is that we shouldn't worry so much about this if we are eating a diet that is naturally appealing. Animals don't worry about if they are getting enough calcium or iron so neither should we. They just eat their biological diet and go on with their life! Nature has it all worked out for us!
But where do you get your protein? Ah, the protein question. This is the most commonly asked question! First of all, humans do not need as much protein as some people think. When we are infants, we grow at the most rapid state we will ever grow. We are meant to live on our mother's breast milk, which is 1-4% protein. Consequently, fruit happens to be 1-6% protein. As a parting thought, gorillas are one of the strongest mammals on the planet. Where do they get their protein? (fruits and greens!)

You mentioned you were an athlete. How has this diet effected your performance? Yes, I am a sponsored competitive rock climber and I only want the best diet for my performance. I have tried many diets over the years to try and achieve optimal performance. It was not until I found this natural diet when I achieved this goal. I have never felt this strong in years and I feel like the way I eat now has greatly effected my performance on the rock. I have been a regional champion for a few years now and have competed at nationals. I am stronger than ever.

What would you tell someone who wanted to start eating this way?

First, I would tell them to buy the book The 80/10/10 Diet by Dr. Douglas Graham because it is so informative when it comes to this natural diet. Getting inspired and motivated was the most important part for my transition! Research, research, research! Next, I would tell them to start their day with a fresh fruit smoothie or piece of fruit. There are many ways to transition to this diet but I found that slowly adding fruits and greens to the existing diet is an easy way to ease in, starting with breakfast. Slowly start making the raw portion sizes bigger and the cooked food portions smaller. Soon enough, you'll be eating raw fruits and vegetables for breakfast, lunch and dinner. If you need any help transitioning, feel free to email me for more personal help:

I, among many others, am living proof that eating our biological diet is not only do-able, but beneficial. By comparing ourselves to other animals, looking at our senses, and using simple logic, we have found that humans are frugivores by nature. One could only imagine what the world would be like if everyone started eating our natural diet again. Would all disease fade away and be cured? Would depression be solved? Would people be happier and healthier? There is only one way to find out.

****if you found this post interesting, and would like to read more info on the subject, let me know. I wrote a more in depth paper that I am glad to share. Leave your email and I will send it to you.

spontaneous trip to the red

On Wednesday Tim and I spontaneously decided to go to the Red River Gorge to do a day and a half of climbing in one of the best climbing areas in the nation.

We arrived at 7pm and climbed a couple routes at Roadside crag. It was the most humid i have EVER felt it, EVER. We were sweating bullets!

Thursday was my 19th birthday. We woke up early and headed out to The Dark Side. We did a couple cool warm ups and headed to the beautiful, overhanging, pocketed wall. Ana Hayes climbed with us and then later on the TBA crew including Lu, Kasia, AJ, Holly, and Sam. I put 2 good burns into a 5.12 called Mama Benson. The crux is at the top and it involves a long move after a couple crimpy moves. I was in a try hard mode that made me feel accomplished even with no send. It's a really cool route and area, and I can't wait to go back!

Oh, and did I mention the weather!? I really couldn't have asked for better weather on my birthday. I was really thankful for this, as it was the best day of weather that the area had in quite a while! Everyone was pretty psyched about it, especially the locals. =)

We headed out in the afternoon to eat lunch and chill at ana's place. I plugged in my vita-mix blender and made some dateorade (just soaked dates and water blended) - which is a great sports drink if you want some good sugary energy punch. Next we headed to the tent and took a nap before some evening climbing.

Later on we hiked to military wall and did one more route to finish off our one and a half day, spontaneous adventure to the red.

Overall, the red IS worth it for one day! And I had an amazing birthday!!!!

Monday, June 14, 2010

spontaneous adventure to Bonnaroo

Yesterday Tim and I met up with his friend and a few others for lunch. They had just been kicked out of bonnaroo, a 4 day music festival in manchester, TN. I have been for the past 4 years, and you can read about one of my experiences here.

Needless to say, one of them slipped off their wristbands and gave it to me so that I could catch the last few hours of bonnaroo.

With a smile on my face, i headed home and then begged my roommate Jonathan to go with me. He did not have a wristband but I knew I could find him one. =)

me and J at the roo
Tim had to drive my bro to Nashville and Manchester was on the way. We all packed in the car and headed that way. Tim dropped Jonathan and I off at a gas station, where I asked around for a wristband. I finally bought one off a girl for 5 bucks, as scalpers were STILL selling tickets outside the gas station for $100, no joke. The original price is around $250.

Anyways, then we hitched a ride to the main campgrounds from a couple in a jeep. We were in!!!! We met up with my good friend Paulina, chilled out a little, and then headed to centeroo, where the stages are.

chillin inside a hut made out of recycled cans

sunset at the roo
beautiful pink clouds!
me and paulina
We saw a couple bands and then saw Dave Matthews band, the main reason why I wanted to go. I grew up with DMB playing around our house and in every family roadtrip! (DMB, New Radicals, Pink Floyd and the Beatles were the main bands of my youth!) Anyways, it was really cool to see them live and it brought back many childhood memories. They really know how to jam!

me and jonathan listening to DMB

dave matthews band!
Near the end of the show, we headed out to try and hitch a ride home. Earlier in the evening, I found a cardboard box that i wrote "Chattanooga?" on, hoping that someone would be heading that way. We walked along the exit road with our sign. Not long later, we had a taker!!!! A nice father and daughter were headed to Chattanooga as well! We hopped in and were really thankful for the ride. (Thanks again if you are reading this!) We were SOOOO not looking forward to waking up in a scorching hot tent!!!!

this is me with the sign we made to find a ride home. SUCCESS!

Overall, it was a very fun spontaneous adventure!

*sorry for the picture quality; these pics were all with my phone!

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Tim Hinck & Aaron Roche = Plainspeak

My boyfriend, Tim Hinck, is a very talented, professional musician. He teamed up with his friend Aaron Roche and recently put together an amazing new album, entitled "Plainspeak."

As Tim explain's it, "'Plainspeak' is the new album by Indie-folk singer/songwriter Aaron Roche, and composer Tim Hinck. This interesting fusion of Classical/Electronica/SouthernFolk/IndieRock will be released in October 2010 on SoundsAreActive Records (L.A., California)" Also, be sure to check out their facebook fan page!

Tim and Aaron are currently trying to raise the funds to try and complete the album. They are doing this through Kickstarter, an organization that helps young artists raise money for their projects.

Check out their cool kick starter video! (click the picture below)

If you have 5 minutes, you should pass this on to some music lovers, kind souls, rich folk, or whoever would be interested in it.


Celebration of Life for Lonnie Bonds

Last weekend I went to Chicago for a celebration of life for my great uncle, Lonnie Bonds. He was an amazing guy and brought some incredible people together on this beautiful summer day. We'll always remember you, Lonnie!

My great aunt Eileen (married to Lonnie) kindly allowed me to stay in her home during my visit. I always love staying with her, not only because she is an amazing person and beautiful kind soul, but also because her house and yard are both so incredible. She is conveniently located in a short walking distance from downtown Chicago, just minutes from public transportation and famous shops. However, she maintains beautiful gardens along with her old character-filled home. I love everything about it.

She hosted a very cool party and I had a lot of fun. There was lots of laughs, smiles, probably tears, and new friendships made. Here are some pictures (there are more on my facebook):

my great uncle Lonnie Bonds. What a badass!

signature book & prayer cards
me & my beautiful cousin sheila
lonnie's daughter, Rhenetta & I
my amazing cousin lonnie, me, & beautiful aunt eileen
there was a heartwarming slideshow of pics
eileen's yard, in the middle of downtown chicago. Urban gardens, anyone!?
a couple photographers. ;)
my dad & eileen
uncle jimbo & my dad
a beautiful rose in eileen's garden
raindrops on roses!
crazy magical tree!
another cool tree in eileen's yard.
two cuties by the bird bath...

AND for the raw vegan viewers:

FRESH STRAWBERRY PICKING in eileen's back yard. Yes please!
premium organic strawberries from a local farmer
Stanley's Market, just a few minute walk from Eileen's:
yeah.... cheap stuff!
thanks for reading!