Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Meet Mitra

As I mentioned yesterday, I started drinking the green smoothie in Dr. Mitra Ray's book as much for vanity and beauty as I did to feel better. I know my motives weren't pure and I'm okay with that. I mean, OF COURSE I wanted to get healthy and have more energy and feel better but if the side effect was looking better too, well, so be it.

In, 'Do You Have the Guts to be Beautiful' Dr. Ray gives us the keys to being beautiful, both inside and out, without pills, chemicals or complicated recipes. It was one of the first books I read that talked about the importance of eating a whole-foods plant-based diet for optimal health, as well as beauty.

Anyway, I was poking around on her web site yesterday and came across her top ten list of things to do to get healthy. On her site she goes into detail for each item but I thought I would just list them for you here. It's nothing ground-breaking and you've heard most of it before, but when you have a few extra minutes you should visit her site and spend some time reminding yourself why these practices are so crucial to good health and optimal wellness.

Ten Things to do to Get Healthy

1. Take 10 deep breaths whenever you feel stressed.

2. Drink water, and plenty of it.

3. Eat plant-based, whole-foods at every meal, and make it the biggest part of the meal.

4. Get at least 8 hours of sleep each day.

5. Eat a whole-food based supplement.

6. Eat processed foods sparingly, less than once a week if possible.

7. Make breakfast and lunch your biggest meals.

8. Get outside and move a little bit each day.

9. Start each day with a Green Drink.

10. Think good, healthy thoughts.

I think I need to pay special attention to #1 this week while I am off coffee and wine. I feel especially vulnerable to the crying and the whining and the screaming ... I think Eric put them up to it in an attempt to break me so he can win the bet. But I'm on to his little ruse and am hanging tough despite the added pressure. Ear plugs are helpful.

Be well everyone and have happy hump day!


  1. Fabulous post, Erin, thanks! I've never heard of Mitra.

    I am coming out of a very rough patch of self-loathing and failure but as I said to a friend yesterday, I'm climbing out of the pit and the thing that's helping me the most are the new footholds on the slippery walls.

    One of those footholds is self-kindness/self-care that I am allowing myself these days. Thanks to the book Erin suggested last week, "When you eat at the refrigerator, pull up a chair", I am keeping my mind full of positive thoughts & ideas to keep me from slipping back down further.

    I would never be content with my body the way I am right now mostly because it's just not healthy and I don't want to die a slow, painful, early death because of it! But I'm beginning to separate loving me for who I am right now vs loving the current state of my body. I don't have to love the extra cushion but I will no longer hate the soul of me that carries that weight!

  2. The babies were up THREE times last night ... oh what I would do for a cup of coffee ... or a soy latte ... :(

    Good job LWL!!

  3. Agreed, wonderful post! Always a great reminder to do some some simple things. About that water drinking...

    LWL - I was right there with you! Let's keep climbing out of the pit!!!

    To say that I've "let myself go" is an understatement, but slowly, I'm becoming the person I have always been but decided to hide for a while, literally and figuratively.

    Let's keep climbing.

    Erin, did you post the green drink recipe? I wanted to compare it with the green smoothie recipe I have.

    Oh, and I think you asked me about Malawi. I was born in Lilongwe, but grew up mostly in the States. I'm planning to head to Africa later in the year, let me know where your friend.

    Looking forward to more posts, Erin!

    Thank you!

  4. Green machine was posted yesterday on the blog. It is also on Mitra Ray's web site. What do you do for your green drink? I'm always interested in new recipes!

    We blended some spinach with blueberries and the twins LOVED it. It was MESSY but they really liked it so don't assume your kids won't like something green :)

  5. soooo, i need to take 10 deep breaths 1,000 times a day? that seems like a lot. ;)

    thanks as always, erin! it's a great way to combat this article i read this morning on how 'superwoman syndrome' is leading women down a dangerous path.

    LWL, keep climbing girl! Lending you a virtual hand anytime you need it.

  6. i really like lists like this one. they make health seem doable.

    erin, one of my 7 trillion doctors suggested that i use a juicer and make vegetable and fruit juices every morning, something about the vitamins being already broken down so it's easier for my body or something. does this sound right to you? do you know of any good juicers?
    also, when are you coming to live with me? we need you.

  7. I have a Breville juicer and it's great -- you can plop a whole lemon or apple down the chute and ... voila ... juice. No chopping. It's about $150 but if something breaks they will just send you a brand new one.

    Juicing is a great way to boost your vitamin and mineral consumption from whole foods. The main draw-back with juicing is that you don't get any of the fiber from the fruits or vegetables. That's not to say it's not a good addition to your diet Glen, but something to be aware of. The green drink from yesterday gives you all the fiber from the kale and fruit so it's good to phase in too.

    It looks like I am moving in with you at the end of April/early May. Careful what you wish for b/c it could be an extended stay if EE doesn't find a new gig in the meantime!

  8. Or Glennon, you could get a really super duper high powered mixer like a Vita Mix that can turn anything into puree in seconds! That way you don't lose fiber!

  9. Hi Erin and All,
    Even though this has been a crazy week (preterm labor, hospital bedrest, c-section, baby in the NICU...!) I have been following the FAL blog and am excited to have you all as a support system. I really want to make good nutrition and lifestyle decisions that will help keep my energy levels up (and stress levels down).
    In terms of meals, I find that it is easiest to eat the same breakfast and lunch everyday so I don't even have to think about it. For breakfast I have either Kashi Go Lean with walnuts and banana slices or Old Fashioned oatmeal with sliced almonds and raisins. For lunch I've been having a 1/2 sandwich on ww bread with hummus, light cheese, and shredded carrots - on the side I have pretzles and apple slices. Dinners are the next challenge...
    What kind of go to (quick, easy, portable) snacks should I have throughout the day? (something to keep me away from the candy bowl)


  10. Yes Yes YES -- TOTALLY GET THE VITAMIX ... Mel has one and, with the dry attachment you can even make your own flour. I mean seriously. They are amazing. As much horesepower as your lawn mower (ok, not quite but they are bad ass!) so they do puree anything in a jiffy!

    Brooke ... I will try and pull together a list of good snacks for you but, off the top of my head, raw veggies dipped in hummus are great. If you can get in the habit of washing and slicing everything the day you buy it and making a big batch of black bean or regular hummus you have a go to snack anytime. You can also load up a whole wheat wrap with lots of peppers, sprouts, cucumbers, etc with some hummus for a quick lunch. Mostly I tend to snack on fruit. We always have a ton in the house and it's portable for the most part. Nuts or homemade trail mix with salt-free/raw nuts are another great option but obviously are more calorie-dense. Just something to be aware of but if you are trying to pump and keep your milk supply up you will need the extra calories. Hang in there Brooke!