Wake Up People – It’s Raw Food

Lately we have been getting a lot of customers asking about stock levels of certain products and why it’s taking a while to restock items?  Why they keep going out of stock? Why some best by dates are so short?  Why we can’t get any more of a certain product in?

Most of you already now that we deal with many hard to find items.  Did you know however that many of the items we carry only come from  small farms? Sometimes these items are only available from one single farm in the entire world.   For example, the Peruvian Yacon Syrup we carry is produced in one small region in Peru.   Although there are versions from China available, we find that the Peruvian Yacon has the best flavour profile and is less bitter than the Chinese brand.   Not only that, the Peruvian one is certified organic.

This being said, Essential Living Foods who supplies us with the Yacon has been out of stock for months due to the increase in demand caused by Dr Oz  who was promoting it on his show.    As soon as the episode aired, yacon stocks were depleted and the producer in Peru was totally out of of stock.  Stripped completely in hours.   It’s not like you can just make yacon.  You have to wait for it to grow which takes months.    Since this happened almost 8-12 months ago, it’s been very difficult to get Peruvian Yacon.   We are hoping to have some more stock in a few weeks.

Another example are some of are our Botija olives.  We have several varieties, but sometimes we can run out for months since there are only 2 farms in Peru that produce these wonderful olives and they are supplying the whole world.   We order them in large quantities so that they last us until the next crop but sometimes they can not fulfill our entire order so we are left waiting for the next harvest.

These are just a couple of examples of items from Peru.  Now can you imagine running out of things like pumpkin seeds.   Our supplier has been out of stock for over 2 months.  Again, you can’t just snap your fingers and get pumpkin seeds.   We have to wait for the next crop to be harvested and bagged and shipped which will be early next year.   What happens when the world is low on traditional pumpkin seeds? They buy whatever they can and the price is gies up. So now the more expensive Austrian pumpkin seeds are scarce until the new harvest and their price has also increased.

These are just a few examples of what happens to our food chain when we are dealing with real food and not processed food.   I don’t think stores will be running out of items like traditional GMO corn or soy products, or processed foods which use a large amount of these products.   When it comes to raw food such as nuts, seeds and super foods, high demand can strip the market of a product in days.   This is exactly what just recently happened with maca powder.  One buyer stepped in and purchased all the Peruvian Maca leaving hardly any behind for any of the traditional buyers of maca.  Our sources tell us that all this maca was bought by the Chinese.  So maca will be a lot harder to find in the next few months.

Another factor to consider is the weather. Below is a letter we received from one of our suppliers regarding typhoons that hit and wiped out 25% of the coconut trees in some areas causing an increase in price of coconut products.  Most companies, like Upaya Naturals, absorbed a lot of the price increase so the consumers only saw a small rise in price.

“Last week a typhoon, (Tropical storm Rammasun), passed through parts of South East Asia striking The Philippines, Viet Nam and China. It caused severe damages in the Philippines. Damage assessment is ongoing but early estimates put damages higher than those experienced under Typhoon Yolanda last year. Eight months ago, Typhoon Yolanda impacted the Philippines. It was estimated to have damaged 10% of the coconut trees. This year, following Tropical storm Rammasunm, early damage estimates are putting the number at 13% of coconut trees damaged. This is In addition to the damages done at the time of Yolanda. We are looking at 25% of the coconut trees in the Philippines sustaining damage within a period of 8 months.  Everyone in the coconut industry worldwide was affected by the aftermath of Yolanda in 2013. In addition to supply shortages, prices for coconut products escalated between 30% and 50% depending on the product. The market was beginning to stabilize after 8 months of adjustment before this latest storm hit. Some suppliers have taken themselves off the market to assess the damage.”

You may have noticed that some items have very short best by dates of less than a year, less than 3 months and sometimes less than a month.    You have to understand that all the food products we sell do not contain any added preservatives.  Products that are fully dried usually have a longer shelf life (this may vary depending on the ingredients) compared to those that are only partially dried like our super green wraps, corn wraps or tomato wraps. So when you are buying figs, raisins, nuts, seeds, dried fruits etc. ours are not coated in oil or sulphates to help preserve them.  They are raw and naked.  That is why they may look a bit different than the shiny ones sitting on grocery shelves.  When you get into finished products such as fresh wraps, kale chips, nut butters, bars etc., that take the raw products and grind, crush and blend them to make their finished products,  you then have an even lower shelf life since you have now altered the food from it’s raw state.   Now you have wraps that are made fresh that have a shelf life of 1-2 months, nut butters with shelf life of 6-12 months, kale chips with a shelf life of 6-10 months. 

Consider that these items still have to get to us from our suppliers and sometimes it takes us some time to sell them.   So now we are talking about a turn around time of a month to a few months for some of these products to be sold.   As you can see, unlike conventional products that can sit on a shelf for a year or so, most raw food products typically have a shelf life of 3 months to a year.   So now that you know this you can appreciate the task involved in ordering and replenishing stock.

Finally, we get to some items that have been out of stock for a long time such as the tempeh starter, vegan yogurt starter or pine pollen.  Sometimes there are items that we used to stock but our supplier stopped producing them or they went out of business .   This is what happened with our pine pollen and our tempeh and yogurt starter.   We are happy to say that we recently found a new source so all these products should be back in stock in a few weeks.

Hopefully this helped shed some light and woke you up a bit on how the world of raw specialty foods works.  We live this lifestyle and eat this food too, our intention is to keep things in stock of course.  Sometimes there are some bumps and delays,  but we try our best to provide the highest quality raw foods on the earth today all available at your fingertips with a click of the mouse.

Have any questions or comments?  Drop us a line below.

 

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Enemas – Yes We Said Enemas! Why Do Them and How?

Performing an enema is like flushing out the engine of your car.   After years of mileage, gunk forms inside the walls and the only way to help release some of it is to actually flush it out. Doing an enema helps move stagnant waste that is sitting in your colon. As you all have heard many times on TV and radio commercials that your colon may have 10 lbs or more of accumulated waste sitting in the large intestine.  An enema is a gentle way to help break this toxic waste down and eliminate it from the body.

enemabag

Benefits

There are many benefits of doing an enema. Some of the ones below we have experienced ourselves first hand depending on whether we are using coffee or just lemon water to do the enema.

  1. Helps eliminate toxins
  2. Cleans the colon by breakdown plaque buildup on the colon walls
  3. Helps eliminate toxic buildup when fasting
  4. Helps get rid of parasites
  5. Helps with Candida
  6. Helps with fatigue, headaches, flatulence
  7. May help with clearing up your skin
  8. Helps with indigestion
  9. Helps with constipation
  10. Helps with headaches and colds
  11. Makes you feel absolutely amazing after you’re done – lighter, less bloated, more mental clarity, like.

It is recommended that you do an enema first thing in the morning, preferably after your first bowel movement.   It is also even more beneficial if you eat clean food that is easy to digest a week or two before doing an enema.   The best is plant based food since it is the easiest to move through your digestive system compared to animal products which may sit in your colon for days. There are many vegan and vegetarian options available at most restaurants and there are tons of online resources for recipes to help get you started.

So before we get into how to do an enema there are different types of enemas you can do depending on the liquid used.   The most popular are coffee enemas or just straight water enemas with fresh lemon juice.

Coffee enemas are used by the Gerson Institute (known for healing cancer) and many practitioners recommend them to help flush out the liver and gallbladder of toxins.   We recommend an organic coffee that is not roasted to death. Make sure it is NOT decaffeinated. The caffeine does not affect the body when taking coffee this way compared to drinking it. We like grinding the coffee beans just before we do the enema so they are fresh. If you don’t have a coffee maker, just boil water and let the ground coffee sit in a covered bowl in the water for 15 – 20 minutes.   This will allow the liquid to cool at the same time so you don’t burn yourself.   Don’t forget to strain it well though, so that it does not clog the enema tube.

Coffee Enema Recipe

Add one tablespoon of fresh ground organic coffee per cup of water. We recommend 2 – 4 cups for the coffee enema since you will be trying to retain this inside you for 10-15 minutes or longer.   You can boil the coffee in a pan with water or use a coffee maker. Make sure to strain the coffee well using a fine strainer or non-bleached coffee filter. Let it cool down by adding ice cubes or letting it sit until it is warm but not hot to the touch. If it is too hot you will burn yourself and if it is too cold you may experience some cramping when taking the enema in. A good temperature is about 99°F or 38°C.

PRL-001-2T

Lemon and water enemas are also great for getting rid of toxins and loosening up any fecal matter.   Lemon juice is also very alkalizing to the body (even though it’s acidic) which also helps with pH balance in the colon.

Lemon Juice Enema Recipe

Juice from 4 lemons freshly squeezed and sifted
2 qts. Or 8 cups of warm filtered water about 99°F or 38°C.

 

How to Take an Enema

So now that we have all that out of the way how do we actually take an enema. First off, you will need an enema bucket or bag. They both contain a long straight tube and a straight nozzle. Make sure to use the thinner straight nozzle and not the douche nozzle that also comes with most kits. Attach the tube to the enema bucket or enema bag and attach the nozzle to the other side of the tube.  We won’t be using the long catheter that come with these kits below.

ENEM-0001-1 ENEM-0002-1

Now look for the clamp that is on the tube. Loosen it and move it so that when you are lying on your back you can reach it to control the water flow.  Once it is in position clamp it down tight since you will now be filling the bag/bucket with water and don’t want it to leak.   Fill it with water and position the end nozzle in a sink so that you can loosen the clamp for water to flow (let it flow for 2-3 seconds) in order to release any air in the line. Once you have no air left in the line clamp it tight and hang it on a wall or position it safely somewhere 2-3 feet above floor level to create sufficient pressure for the liquid to flow.

Next we recommend getting a few towels to lie on.   We also recommend having a roll of toilette paper near you to help with any spills or leakage. Next use some lubricant; we prefer sesame oil, on the nozzle. Lie down on your back with your knees bent and gently insert the tube past the sphincter muscle of the anus. Take slow deep breaths and relax your body to prevent it from being forced back out.

Now take your time and release the clamp slowly and you will feel the water entering your body. Don’t go to fast. If you feel cramping or discomfort, take some deep breaths and /or massage you abdomen counter clockwise. You can stop the water flow if you have to until you are comfortable enough to continue. The goal is to get as much liquid as possible in the body. Continue until the bag or bucket is empty or until you cannot feel any more liquid entering your body (if you can not see the bag/bucket).  Now clamp the tube and remove it from inside you.   If you feel the urge to evacuate you can try putting your feet up against a wall or doing a shoulder stand until the urge passes.

Keep breathing and relaxing. Once you get past a certain point we personally find that you can hold the liquid in for a fairly long time. In order to help circulate it in the colon you can massage your abdomen counter clockwise. You can also go from lying on your back to lying on your rights side, then on your back again then to the left side.   Try to hold each position for a few minutes while massaging your abdomen to help loosen any matter in your colon.

colon massage

If you cannot hold it any longer, then run to the toilette and release the contents.   Sometimes at the beginning you may not be able to empty the entire bag/bucket inside you and you will have to try again. This is normal for most people so don’t get frustrated. You may need that initial short fill to flush out any fecal matter from the night before.

When you have held it long enough, then sit on the toilette and let the water run out.   It is best if your knees are a bit higher than your waist so putting your feet on a block while sitting on the toilette will help eliminate the water better. You will have to sit there for a few minutes to make sure your bowels are empty.   Now observe what you have released from inside of you with the enema water.  Many people see mucus, weird debris, sand, small pebbles and parasites are also very common.

Don’t forget to thoroughly clean the equipment you used with hot water and soap. We also like using hydrogen peroxide to wash the nozzle and tubing.

That’s it. We are all done and feeling like a million bucks. Tell us what you think. Share your thoughts below. Tell us about your enema experience. Got questions? Post them below. We’d love to answer them.

The Art of Nut Milking

So at first glance this may seem a little strange to some people.   How do you get milk out of nuts? What kind of nuts can I make milk with? What’s wrong with just buying almond milk from my local grocery store? Why should I make my own and how do I do it? What’s a nut milk bag?First of all, nut milks are not made by squeezing or pressing a nut. If you do that, using a proper press machine, you will get oil and not nut milk.   Nut milks are made by blending the nuts with water after they have been cleaned and soaked for about 8 hours then straining the liquid from the almond meal.

So, If you think that the only nut milk that you can make is almond milk, you are definitely not thinking out of the box.   There’s Brazil nut milk, cashew, milk, pecan milk, hazelnut milk, macadamia milk, sesame seed milk, walnut milk and more. Our favourites are the almond, cashew, and Brazil nut milks.

So with all these nut milks why not just buy them already made at the store.   Well, have you ever picked up a carton of almond milk to look at the ingredients?   You will find that they are loaded with added sugar and also contain preservatives.   Plus you will be lucky if you even find organic nut milk at your grocery store. Most of the time it’s just conventional. Plus you will be hard pressed to find any of the above mentioned nut milks except for almond milk and perhaps the latest release which is cashew milk.   Again both filled with unwanted, unhealthy ingredients and including preservatives.

nut milk glass

When you make your own almond milk, or anything from scratch, you control exactly what goes in it and it tastes way better and so much fresher than the store bought Tetra packs. Plus you can tweak it to make it taste how you like it.   You can sweeten it using your sweetener of choice – instead of high glycemic sweeteners found in the ones at stores. You can even sweeten it using dates or any other fruit or berry.

So how exactly do you make a nut milk? Well let’s start with the basics and we can tweak it a bit after. First let’s start with the equipment:

  1. High powered blender – the higher the power the smoother the milk
  2. Nut Milk Bag – special bag made of fine mesh used to strain the milk
  3. Measuring cup
  4. Large Bowl

Next you will need the basic ingredients:

  1. 1 cup of your choice of nuts soaked for 8 hours to soften them. We’ll be using almonds to make it simpler.
  2. 2-3 cups of water. We like it a bit smoother and not as thick so we use 4 cups of water.

Extras to be added for more flavour if you desire:

  1. Fresh Whole Vanilla Bean
  2. 2 Dates with the pits removed or Sweetener of your choice to taste
  3. Pinch of Sea Salt

Instructions:

Rinse the soaked almonds thoroughly and add to the blender container. Add water and any of the other extra ingredients and blend at high speed for a few minutes until it is smooth.   Open the nut milk bag and poor the liquid into the bag while holding it over the bowl so the bowl catches the strained milk.

When most of the liquid is through the bag then you want to close the top of the nut milk bag using the draw string and gently squeeze the remainder of the milk through the bag. CAUTION: DO NOT TWIST THE BAG OR WRING THE BAG OR THE BAG WILL TEAR AND YOU WILL HAVE A BIG MESS.   Be gentle and take your time gently squeezing and milking the bag until only the thick almond meal remains behind. Once you are done you can save the almond meal to make other goodies. We dehydrate ours and save it after every batch of milk until we have enough to make a nice big batch of cookies.nut milk strain

So voila, you have fresh almond milk that will keep for 2-4 days in the fridge. Now time for the fun stuff.

What can you make with almond milk that tastes awesome? How about add some chocolate or carob. Or blend it with blueberries or strawberries. Use it as a base for your protein shake or smoothie, add it to coffee, tea or better yet use it with Dandy Blend (coffee alternative) or for your favourite latte or chai.

We also like Brazil nut milk with a bit of vanilla and nutmeg or just add some mesquite.   For a sweetener we use lucuma. Brazil nut milk has a creamier texture and also goes well with cacao powder. For an added punch, you can also use some Brazil nut or almond milk with 1 tablespoon of lavender flowers. Just make sure to drink this one up within a few hours since the lavender will be more and more potent as the drink sits.

So how long does all this take. Well, if your nuts are soaking, then it will take 5-10 minutes to blend and strain.

So tell us what your favourite concoction is with these amazing nut milks.   We would love to hear from you.

Recipe Week: Raw Vegan Pumpkin Pie

With all the pumpkins and squash out there this month why not create a mouth watering pumpkin pie to share with family and friends.

pumpkin pie

Ingredients:

Filling
1 medium Pumpkin peeled (Japanese Squash variety is best)
1.5 cups Pine Nuts
3/4 cup Coconut Water or Water
1 Tablespoon Coconut Butter
3 Teaspoons Cinnamon
1 Teaspoon Nutmeg
2 Tablespoons Pumpkin Pie Spice
4 Dried Apricots or Dates Soaked

Blend pumpkin in a food processor until it is fairly smooth. Place in a bowl with coconut water or water. Place bowl in a dehydrator for 5- 6 hours at 140 deg F. This will soften the pumpkin but make sure the water does not dry up. Since we are dehydrating it above the regular 118 deg F we need to make sure there is enough water to keep it cool.  The water will lower the temperature of the actual pumpkin so that it stays raw.

Remove from the dehydrator and blend in a high powered blender to make it very smooth. Blend in remaining ingredients.

Crust

2 Cups Flax, ground
½ c Hemp Seeds
½ Cup Almond Milk
2 Tablespoons Coconut Butter, melted
1 Teaspoon Pink Salt

Mix in a bowl by hand the hemp, flax salt and coconut butter until it is a coarse consistency. Add almond milk or coconut water and keep mixing. Press it into a pie plate and pour filling inside the crust. Serve warm or chilled.

Let us know what you think.