The Raw Truth… A True Believer’s Rawesome Take on Nutrition!
My hOMegirl Tessa Manning and her partner Kevin Gratton recently opened “Oh My Goodness Foods,” a raw food store, this past July out of their home in Boise, ID. Tessa and Kev hold regular raw potlucks open to anyone in the Boise community as well as hosting workshops on making raw chocolates at their home. It is with gratitude, excitement and deep care for the human family that they spread their raw love. Tessa was kind enough to answer a few questions about the logistics of eating raw and shed some light on her experience as a raw foodist. You can visit their store online or contact them via phone to get hooked up with amazing recipes and the most conscious raw products. Get excited about OMG! Foods.
Oh My Goodness Foods
2118 Kerr St
(208) 859 4253
LK: Why raw food? What first brought you to raw foods?
TM. I first heard about raw food about four years ago. It took a year of me hearing about it over and over to try it out for myself. I had just found out I was very allergic to dairy and was devastated about quitting cheese. I searched the internet for "vegan" dairy alternatives and tried recipes for raw ranch dressing, raw cashew cheese, raw hemp milk and raw cheesecake. I was hooked! At least half hooked, I was about 50% raw, mostly consisting of nut and seed dishes, not many greens. Two and half years went by struggling with trying to perfect my diet while occasionally relapsing and getting hooked on sugar and dairy again. Last winter by body had had it. It said, "STOP!" I got sick, all my health problems started to accumulate until I felt like a toxic blob. I picked up a copy of "Rainbow Green Live Food Cuisine" by Gabriel Cousens and read it all in one sitting. I was blown away. I made the decision to go 100% raw, and not only would I do it for three whole months, the first month with NO sugar whatsoever; not even fruit. The sweetest thing I could consume was a red pepper. For the first week I went through what felt like drug withdraw with none of my precious sugar. I was miserable. But lo' and behold by week two all of my health issues went away 100%. Hmmm, there must be something to this! Raw, living food has become my lifestyle. At three months all my craving for junky or cooked food had disappeared, and I decided to go for four months. At four months I decided for six. Now I am almost at 7 months completely raw. I do not want to ever go back. I feel amazing. Not only do I have more energy, my skin shines, I have reached my ideal weight, but also my mind feels clear. Issues including PMS, feeling run down, pimples and digestive problems have all gone away! I feel in total control of my body and my health. Being alive has become that much better and brighter. All just from eating raw, living foods!
LK: How did you and Kev start "OMG" up? What was your inspiration and what were you up against?
TM: Since raw food is a lifestyle food shopping becomes a whole new experience! Through traveling we have realized that there is a huge assortment of different raw, living foods, and the goal of Oh My Goodness is to offer the highest quality foods on the planet. Having become so passionate about raw, living foods we wanted to spread the love! Raw foods, especially super-foods, are rather expensive at health food stores so the idea popped into our minds to have a more affordable store specializing in organic, raw super-foods. We make sure that all of our prices are as affordable as they can be. It has been so fulfilling to see people come over and buy the most amazing products to put in their bodies, and improve their health.
What are we up against? We are up against a deep part of the human psyche. We see so many different stages of people’s defenses against and acceptance of changing what they eat. We have heard it takes 35 times for someone to hear something before they can bring it into their own individual consciousness. So we are working on it!
LK: How would your respond to the controversy surrounding raw food as sustainable nutrition? Also how do you respond to doubts that a raw diet can support fully support us nutritionally?
TM: I wondered at times about eating things that come from all corners of the world, and what impact that has on our environment. Looking into these amazing companies, their ethics are through the roof. All the products are fair trade, and some companies go as far as offsetting their carbon foot print by planting trees among other things. Since this a newer thing, it will continue to get better and better. For example: growing goji berries in the U.S.
LK: Also how do you respond to doubts that a raw diet can support fully support us nutritionally especially those of us who exhibit characteristics of the windy Vata?
TM: I am of the vata dosha and always cold! Dr. Gabriel Cousens goes into these issues in depth in his book "Conscious Eating" and "Rainbow Green Live Food Cuisine". There are many heating spices that I use daily to keep me warm like ginger, cinnamon, cardamom, etc. I also do a lot of raw soups that I heat on the stove to 120 degrees. That is still very warm! When I eat recipes that require the dehydrator I always take them out when they are still warm. I believe that a raw food diet can work for everyone, it just needs to be individualized to one’s body to work!
LK: What’s your favorite simple raw recipe that we can all enjoy!
TM: These were two of my first and they’re always winners…
1 C cashews
1 TB lemon
salt to taste
(add anything else you like, red pepper makes it nacho cheese, garden spices make it herbed cheese, etc.)
*Blend until creamy
1/4C olive oil
1/8C lemon juice
1-2TB Apple cider vinegar
1TB Agave nectar
1/2C Sunflower Seeds (soaked)
1C Hemp seeds
1/4C Parsley (fresh, if possible)
1/8C Basil (fresh, if possible)
*Blend, and enjoy!
***Thank you, Tessa and Kev!***