a mastercleanse for your existence.
In the plan to become a thriving and Nourished Warrior, it’s all about wellness, wisdom and waking up – not necessarily in that order.
Throughout our blog – you will find we will categorize each aspect of wellness: INDULGE, FUEL, PURIFY, EMPOWER, RESOLVE and RESTORE Each of these categories contains an arsenal, from which to draw from as you make your way on your path.
Each aspect will address important elements of your overall wellness needs, and strive to educate, enlighten and empower you as to the remarkable avenues accessible to get you to your ultimate end-point. Optimal wellness, a thriving life. Becoming The Nourished Warrior.
In this installment we will be sharing insight from the FUEL arsenal. FUEL itself can be many things, primarily it is what we feed our bodies, during the daily strive to thrive.
Lately we have been getting alot of questions from people who are on the verge, the verge of realization in many facets, those whom need just that wee little tipping point moment to change their journey towards thriving. The Nourished Warrior Wellness armory has been building itself organically for months now, with several installments and various printable-infographics to wield on your journey through the consumer maze.
The foundational knowledge you need when you begin this lifestyle- starts with understanding those inconvenient truths surrounding both our culture and our food system, and for those who are indeed on the verge it takes some strategic maneuvering- so as you do not feel overwhelmed by the wealth of truth that lays just below the surface. Basically it’s about leading you to the cliff, with grace and infusing you with the wisdom to take the leap with confidence and clarity as your parachute.
It’s about giving the right amount of info, piece by piece and step by step- filtering it wisely as not to create discouragement or fear, leading to the proverbial cliff but never pushing you off the cliff by delivering an avalanche of info. Too much at once- we’ve seen it happen- very often ends up in zero progress. zero interest and zero motivation to start.
The path is unique for everyone- but the one thing that is not unique is the need to take one step, one breath, one moment at a time.
Ingesting knowledge as if it were a balanced meal- bite-sized, moderate portions allow for a healthy digestive process- and it is the same when you are serving up information.
Having said that, this piece is going to be for:
– the peeps who are entirely new, either new to any and all of this, just waking up, slightly suspicious and emotionally, physically, spiritually aware that something just ain’t right,
– or for those who are feeling that awakening in the form of physical manifestation…. ( Perhaps you are perpetually sick for no explained reason, you’ve been to several different dr’s each with a questionable diagnosis, or an answer of prescribed medication or better yet further treatment – excuses to swipe your health card- each appointment leaves you feeling frustrated, confused, or perhaps even with a false sense of certainty- short-term solutions that address the symptom, the immediate issue, or the side-effect, but never the root cause. To put it simply, and kindly- Western Medicine does not see the whole person. They do not look at you like the wonderfully complex organism that you are, with physical, emotional, spiritual and mental health that is interconnected- and thus needs to be addressed from a wholistic standpoint. They don’t seek true root cause- They treat you in pieces, and they treat the by-products of the illness which most times is, at its root- emotional trauma that needs healing. and our understanding of reality that needs healing. We have been programmed for centuries to suffer. It doesn’t have to be this way!
– Perhaps you are ill on a daily basis with gastro-intestinal issues, popping Zantac and Gravol like candy or even worse- you’re on some form of dopamine or seratonin agonist that was prescribed as you described feeling sad, anxious, depressed, unstable, dizzy, unfocused, confused, de-motivated, insomniacal, or even just plain unsure as to what the discomfort was all about- unsure about your life and where you are going, what you are supposed to be doing.
– This is for the chronic pain patients and the Crohn’s and IBS sufferers, for the peeps with no explanation for why you suddenly stopped feeling ‘like you’
Let me tell you now- before we begin this journey together- it goes much deeper than simply diet- this many layered lotus of understanding the truth of reality in our modern world… but the one place where we truly have control, is within our ability to make the empowered choice when it comes to what we put inside our bodies. As related to the physical aspects that are affected by diet and by toxins and by popculture lifestyle projections- and the inevitable manifestations of those illnesses…i have been through it all.
Ive been an abused woman, and suffered a series of toxic relationship patterns that taught me all kinds of ill-conceived ideas,
had miscarriages, followed by surgeries that led to specialists and a landslide of mis-diagnosis ( see my medical marijuana journey )
suffered anxiety, depression, panic, social-phobia and social issues of any and every measure, i’ve had sleep disorders, ( was treated with every anti-depressant on the market all before the age of 22 )
chronic self-sabotage and chronic emotional pain that many a day had me convinced i was crazy and I spent muchos time afraid if i let anyone know what went on in my mind – i’d be comitted.
i’ve suffered gallstones and gallbladder surgery,
a peptic ulcer so bad it bordered perforation,
i’ve had chronic irritable bowel syndrome since i was a child and was never diagnosed with- although i suspect that before i began to eat clean- i was on the border of both Crohn’s disease with a side of bleeding ulcer,
Popping ulcer and pain and anti-anxiety meds at various intervals and never, ever quite feeling like i’d found the solution.
I’ve had body-dysmorphia, various shades of eating disorders and neverending battle with food- that led me to the depths of sickness and the slightest of frames due to the 4 hours a day i would spend in the gym,
I wiped out my adrenal glands and wore out my immune system and my nervous system saw havoc wreaked on it from my simple day-today-
All of the above i suffered through western medicine as my blind-guide to understanding- what woke me up was the realization of how deeply our bodies are connected to our minds, spirits and emotions- and they but manifest what lays within us to be healed- without my journey with yoga its doubtful i ever would have made it to healing. No matter what your wake-up call is or whom your co-pilot co-creator or collaborator is- we all need one on this voyage to awakening our highest level happiness and health.
I never had a guide, nor a book of tips to read from, nor any friends who understood the depth of knowledge i sought. I’ve pieced together information from a lifetime of seeking. I’ve never had the access or resources to seek out the help of healers- ( alternative medicine until it is recognized as legitimate healthcare need, will never be covered by OHIP here in Canada, ) and it is because of that- i have had to learn my own way, muster up my own methodology, develop my own path to healing without the support of the Accupuncturists, Chinese Medicine Doctors, Massage Therapists, Ayurvedic Healers and any of the other countless gifted healers out there.
What that led me to understand – above all, is that one of my primary purposes in this life- is to be a healer myself. Through my own suffering i learned my own gift. An innate ability to heal others through words, through touch, through perspective and ultimately through the tools i craft– has been a blessing unto myself, as it’s allowed me the opportunity to develop my own capacities as a therapist of many measures. First and foremost- is always the journey of self-healing, ( and those who are in the know- know- that never ends. ) The work it takes to evolve yourself as a human being on the path to enlightenment and wellness- has no end-point. As my friend ( who is also a lovely satsang leader + spiritual teacher) Paul Hedderman once said- “There is no pot of gold at the end of the rainbow, you are the gold”
It is not a destination, but a journey. And a journey that with each step, gets richer, more rewarding, more blessed. So While i suffered all of these supposed conditions, spread out over the last 30 years – from those 30 years of physical challenge I’ve come out the other side nearly healed- each day becoming closer to the thriving state i strive for, and every day my desire to spread the love and wisdom grows.
Now this particular post was inspired by a conversation had on the weekend with a family member ( you know who you are, love ) who i deeply empathize with, not only circumstantially but also because i see alot of myself in her- as an empath, being near her, i can feel all her pain and the suffering she tries so hard to hide. But when in a closed environment with a Nourished Warrior – she began to come clean… as many people feel in the presence of someone who is truly present to listen, a sense of security permeated the space, and with that comfort level came a slew of confessions- many of which are near identical to my own bouts with illness.
I promised her i’d put together something that would make it easy to push play on a path that would lead her to wellness. Now she may have been seeking something a bit shorter, more simple- like a straight-to-the-recipes- type of deal, but it doesn’t work that way. Understanding how to eat for wellness is like peeling an onion- a many layered lotus of wisdom.
The most important thing for anyone to know- but especially someone who feels they have so many issues they might never be well- is that our default state is thriving. Our default is optimal wellness and picture perfect health and the image of that perfection is continuously distorted ( firstly, it goes without saying ‘perfection’ itself, its totally outwardly distorted by culture’s impossible photoshopped version of what perfection is.) .. but what i’m speaking of is inner perfection, perfect wellness ..) it’s distorted by years of false advertising, false educating, false diagnosis, emotional abuse, masochism and self destructive habits. I speak from a place of deep experience on both sides- i’ve suffered through the sickness and i’ve sought the solutions that led to many healings.
So to start off – here’s a key thing to keep in mind as you embark on your journey to becoming a nourished warrior:
1-it’s not your fault. But it is your choice.
Here’s the thing : I was formally educated in advertising and in another life i donned a suit each day and was a part of the marketing mafia which finely tunes your perceptions- from music to meals to cars to deals- we spent long hours plotting to get your dollar.
What to eat, what to drink, what to wear, (& who to wear) how to act, what to think, who to follow, what to listen to, what to watch, – and the list goes on an on..
be wise to ‘washing’ :
That inside-the rabbit-hole wisdom gives me a most unique perspective when it comes to empowering you to the truth – and exposing the – BELIEF-washing that kills.
Belief-washing, is a term im pretty sure i just made up now as i write this- and the definition is similar what any other ‘washing’s’ definition would be- Brainwashing of course is the root- but in a social context- the original ‘washing’ was ‘white‘ Whitewashing which is defined as: “a coordinated attempt to hide unpleasant facts, especially in a political context.”
greenwashing : is a PR/Marketing spin cultivating the perception that a brand or organization’s intention, aim or product is environmentally friendly ie: the act of positioning something as green, eco, ethical when in fact it is not.
Health-washing – a term used to describe the activities of brands and organizations that position themselves as ‘leaders’ in the mission to help create good health- while in fact they are very often engaging in practices that contribute to poor health.
here’s some scary proof: you know the “Health Check” symbol that is stamped on a variety of products in the grocery store? The oh-so-official-looking seal of approval that supposedly renders a product baring it, superiorly healthy? It’s absolutely meaningless. It’s bullshit. Corporations pay the heart and stroke foundation big bucks for the ability to use it on their products. ( same as they pay various other groups to use various other claims… ) There is no standard that has to be met. Just an exchange of dollars for false credibility.
PINK-washing, this one- is a sick one, the act of putting a pretty little pink ribbon where it least belongs, packaged poison- appointed with a neat little pink ribbon to represent the brand’s supposed support of breast cancer research, when 8 times out of 10- the products that don that pink ribbon, are the products that are causing breast cancer!
here’s some proof:
Dove launched a line of products baring the famous pink ribbon. Each and every one of these products contained one or more of the following carcinogenic ingredients known to cause cancer or other reproductive issues.
So then, belief washing is the act of programming the belief system of an individual. Programming us to forget who and what we are- forcing us into being sheep that serve an agenda. ( see: http://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=david+icke+mind+control ) Mind control tactics and marketing savvy combined to wash your beliefs- from believing that cancer is your own fault, to believing that if you work hard- you will be wealthy, from believing in a failing system of government, to believing in false idols on television, from believing if you give your money to the church- somehow God will love you more- ( (s)he loves you regardless. ) to believing there is nothing better to do than watch TV- there is no opportunity to evolve, you are enslaved by society, there is no revolution to be had, believing that YOU have no power. believing that there is no other way then the way that we are taught as we are raised- to study and marry and breed and pay taxes and all of the bullshit that leads to an early grave.
We buy into all of this bullshit on the daily, because it’s bombarding us from all angles- screaming claims from food packaging, from TV commercials and from magazines, from retail store aisles In many cases making claims that are fabricated, nonsensical and juxtaposed on the processed products they are promoting or the unhealthy habits they are sensationalizing. From mindless television shows like jersey shore to other ‘reality’ TV- to CNN to ET to TMZ- media teaches racism, discrimination, bullying, teaches us to hate, to negate, to segregate, to individualize- to apathize, and to disconnect.
The networks that program your weekly TV- are in essence programming your life. That is belief-washing. Ask yourself how you really feel after an evening of belief-washed television and healthwashed food. There is your clue.
So while it is not your fault, because you are indeed up against a massive power – it is indeed your choice. To free yourself of the ‘washing’ – and be truly cleansed. The same as it is your choice to be happy. It may not always seem as such, but just as suffering- happiness is indeed a choice. It sometimes takes some seriously cleansing to get to the place where you can make that choice easily, but it is possible.
In order to truly be without fault though, it is imperative to exercise your choice. Choosing to educate yourself as to what you are putting into yourself. Mind, body and spirit. Your consumption defines your ultimate state of being.
So if you choose then, to not be a victim of any ‘washing’ – what is the alternative? How do you get there?
Small steps. Education and ownership of understanding is the first step to becoming well. Start with really taking a look at what you are putting into your body on a daily basis. Everything you consume- form food, to social media, to conversation, to television,- any and everything we consume is a choice.
It’s habit energy and compulsion that leads to our downfall in near every situation we are in. whether it is falling prey to a former pattern in a relationship that’s toxic, or whether it’s reaching for an unhealthy snack- it’s that comfort and convenience that we always reach out for- because in the short-term it’s easier and feels better than change.
The best place to begin, i believe, in banishing the barrage of brainwashing, is to first take a clean look at your daily menu. As we discussed over the weekend with a family member of ours who is having a difficult time manifesting all manner of physical symptoms- which as i tried to delicately explain- is most likely 85% due to what she puts into and on her body- particularly food. Since this is a daily- necessity no matter who you are- it is often the easiest option to begin the master-cleanse with.
It is particularly challenging and perhaps the most complex of all categories crying out to be cleansed. Because there is so much frontin’ and fuckery- around food. Most food aint really even food at all- it’s shit crafted in a lab.
Unfortunately in the last century the degradation of our food system has reached a breaking point, a fever-pitch quite literally, and has become something that instead of fueling wellness- fuels illness.
Diet is the single most important factor in maintaining and achieving optimal health and it is not only an under-valued aspect but it is an under-understood topic altogether. In the US Alone – 68% of all disease and 40% of all cancers are diet-related. It is through the perversion and industrialization of our food system, via corruption of the FDA, the horrors of Monsanto, and the never-ceasing decline in food quality fueling the incline in toxicity – that so many in our population continue to suffer from (food-borne) illness and disease. Also skyrocketing across the Western world are allergies and food intolerances which many ( Western Medicine ) Physicians ( through their own ignorance or compliance with this conspiracy) fail to properly diagnose; and when they do- the only solutions offered tend to be enlisting big-pharma by prescribing anti-inflammatory medications etc. ) Allergies and intolerances, in themselves – are serious medical conditions resulting in the death and hospitalization of thousands- annually. Most of these are a by-product of defects in our industrialized food system. A perversion of agriculture, through the effects of GMO‘s, hormones and terrifying herbicides, pesticides and petroleum based poisons that are regularly injected, infused and otherwise packed into our produce and packaged-good foods. The fact that in one way or another near every illness or complaint could likely be tracked back to what we put into our bodies- the truth that something so sinister has happened to food that it continues to cultivate profound disturbances in our physiology, leads one to wonder- why is it that we do not strive to thrive? What sad state of complacency have we fallen into, that we no longer have the will to work for wellness? Why do we support a failing and flailing food/pharma/healthcare system ( that is so interconnected- the truth would blow your ever-loving minds ) ?
This knowledge vaccuum creates space for the conscious, the awake and the aware to rise up and take action, accountability and inspired action into our own hands. Through self-empowerment, education and understanding of the dynamics of how we as humans, relate to food- and the reality of what’s available to us in any old supermarket= we can revolutionize the ways in which we fuel ourselves. Ruling out the potential for disease and illness, and empowering those currently suffering from many of the ill-effects of a broken system of sustenance. All that it takes in actuality- is the desire to do better. To live better. To want to be the change that you wish to see in the world. That change starts from within, inside your temple – where the true healing and the true journey to thriving begins.
WE believe in you. We believe that you are worthy of better, brighter, healthier, cleaner and more sustainable sources of fuel, and it is our mission to bring that to you- in as tasty a package as possible.
#Healing is wonderful, tasty healing- that shit is divine.
So, so, so, Where to start?
First before even considering what to shop for, what to toss out and what kind of recipes you are going to make- make yourself come face to face with the truths about our failing food system; for more information on all things FDA, Big-pharma, Industrialized Food etc. please visit any of the following links to educate yourself further:
Secondly: in educating anyone just awakening to the realities of our food system- the second most important rule of thumb to live by is
please, please protest GMO’s.
WATCH:for anyone who is not educated as to what precisely GMO’s are, and why they are a horrific invention by a desperate society seeking to perpetuate disease:
Jeffrey Smith’s mesmerizing film shines a bright light of hope that we can reclaim our health and our food systems…
It’s a real wake up call as to just how deep the corruption of our food chain truly is.. unveiling a world most of us have never seen: exposing the bullying & deceit of the biotech industry, Monsanto’s strong arm tactics, the FDA’s fraudulent policies, & how the USDA adamantly ignores a growing health emergency-
top 3 tips for avoiding GMO foods:
1- buy certified organic. By law organics cannot contain GMO’s ( though questionable in the US- ecocert and Canadian Organic certifications are a safe bet.
2. Look for non-GMO labels, while the petition to have GMO’s labelled has been ongoing for years now, many brands have adopted their own practice of choosing to label their foods non-GMO for the safety and concern of the consumer. ( note: currently there are NO laws in place stating that companies that produce products made with GMO’s must label their products accordingly- a rather terrifying proposition but a seriously fucked up reality. Please do your research. Buy wise.
because evil giant Monsanto will never allow the people to win the battle to label GMO foods- there are a slew of brands, more and more each day who are doing the right thing by labelling their products GMO-free. this is what you should be looking for on anything you buy: —->
if it does not have this seal, and it is not organic – i don’t buy it.
3- avoid any at-risk ingredients, the top culprits being: corn, soy, canola, cottonseed and sugar ( sugar in itself is a sick plague on humanity with its own laundry list of offenses )
if you need any further evidence, ( because perhaps you haven’t yet watched the genetic roulette film-) have a look at this:
this is a Pig Stomach- used for research purposes to show the effects of a stomach that has been fed a GMO diet.
Results show a 267% increase in severe stomach inflammation compared to those fed non-GMO diets
Learn more: http://www.naturalnews.com/040727_gmo_feed_severe_inflammation_pig_stomachs.html#ixzz2j8nMTih5
Plus: A stunning new research study identifies exactly what makes GMO foods dangerous, along with just how GMO foods causes depression anxiety and other serious health conditions su
ch as autism, obesity, Parkinson’s, diabetes, cancer, alzheimers and more.
Top 10 illnesses caused by GMO’s
1- depression and anxiety- this one is huge.
5- Parkinson’s Disease
6- Gastrointestinal issues
ssues such as IBS, Crohn’s disease, ulcers, Leaky Gut syndrome and a host of other nastiness
7- Killing off of Bee Colonies- bees are absolutely essential for human survival on this planet
8- increase in severe food allergies
9- becoming anti-biotic resistant and all around increased toxicity to boot
10- this list could go on forever really, as each day something new about the harmful, horrific effects of this disgusting mutant creation is discovered. A simple google will affirm everything that i have listed here and teach you a wide variety of other horrifying information that is sure to keep you up at night. Your best bet? First, watch the genetic roulette film, get educated- and secondly print the list i have created here, and avoid buying ANY product that is GMO.
Thirdly, for those of you who need some additional assistance in understanding how to read labels, what to look for, what to avoid and what to weed out of your current kitchen: we will be addressing chemicals, toxins and additives, carcinogens and other poisons bit by bit. –
here’s a handy go-to-GMO-guide to add to your arsenal- any and everything on this list is a GMO ingredient which means absolutely, positively DO NOT PUT IT INTO YOUR BODY.
you can also visit the NON Gmo product site, and browse participating products.
: print it off ( it’s size 4×6 ) & keep in your wallet when you’re grocery shopping or save it to your smart phone and pull it up when you are label-checking @ the store.
Next: as related to creating healthy and clean meal plans, we will first touch on shopping for clean-cuisine – where to buy safe food locally and how to prepare naturally powerful foods that will sustain,nourish and fuel your overall wellness.
Navigating the maze of pre-packaged poisons and debunking the bullshit that’s depraved-is tough, it’s all cleverly worded by genius smiths of copy and talented art directors and packaging designers who spend years studying consumer trends, psychology of shopping and the hierarchy of needs that compels your purchase. I’ve been one of those people at high-level agencies whoring for one of the biggest brands on the planet. With a behind the scenes understanding of what really goes in to manufacturing the messages that sell- with peeps like us speaking out, it’s no wonder that so many legions of people are questioning everything they see- especially the foods which contain unpronouncable items – and shit that you wouldnt feed the starving. Alot of what has rendered us sick, toxic and generally unwell at an overall is not entirely our fault. Reality is we live in a society that has been crafted to cultivate our demise. That may sound like crazy ass- 1% occupy shit, but believe me, the things that we are shown, the realiy we see is akin to the tip of an iceberg. Corporations package poisons that line store shelves backed by marketing that’s chief concept is to amuse and confuse.
: manifesting a meal plan that empowers : vol. 1 | SHOPPING part 1
for the smartphone user to wisen herself up to what’s potentially harmful, especially when shopping for nourishment.
So, we discussed the dangers of dealing with GMO’s, Any product produced by Monsanto- and the health-washing that is so widespread that is is keeping consumers confused about what the fuck they can actually EAT in this day and age. We feel you, dude. We have been struggling through the same suffersome bullshit near each and every time we enter a grocery store, and it never gets any easier- especially with the new and improved ways in which marketers and manufacturers have sneakily continued to produce chemical-ridden food- touted as ‘natural’. ‘eco’ or even ‘organic’- they continue to produce food that is totally toxic, and think they are pulling one over on you when you cleverly pull out your app- that tells you what the un-pronouncable ingredients on that label mean- and they have found a new way to rename the synthetic evils and get em into the products without you being any the wiser. The reality is that its fucken tough dude, because of that we have created our printable infographics, but also recco’d is doing what we do- downloading a series of App’s for your iPhone that allow you to plug right into what’s edible as you browse. ( some of them even let you scan the label for potential danger )
here are just some of the great APPS out there to help you on your journey through the grocery store aisles::
we recco: What’s in my food?
ISCANMYFOOD- which lets you scan the labels for chemicals as you shop
Chemical Maze -” The ultimate shopping guide to decode the Food Additives and Cosmetic Ingredients Maze”
and CPSI chemical cuisine
– those are just a few of the many many apps that are part of a list that is growing every day.
Companies are evolving along with the technology and still stealthy getting the shit into our foods but we can arm ourselves with wise-shopper weaponry, to out-wit the wankers who want to sicken us.
Now that we have provided a few tools for empowerment, to wield on your grocery store journey, let’s have a look at what is actually safe to buy from the grocery store shelves.
Produce is huge. We all need it, our bodies crave it- and it can get pretty pricey to buy organic, but let me tell you- when it’s a tradeoff between spending the extra 40 cents per pound to get that organic fruit- or paying literally for the rest of your life as you suffer from gastrointestinal issues or severe depression caused by chemicals sprayed onto food… The investment takes on a new meaning.
Pretty much goes without saying to NEVER BUY- any produce that is not organic, there are levels of toxicity- sure, but regardless your optimal wellness requires NO chemicals whatsoever, not even in small amounts and nearly every piece of produce available in grocery store departments, is coated with herbicides, pesticides of what measure- you might never know. Having said that- there is a rule of thumb in this particular area- its called the ‘dirty dozen & the clean 15’ which will illustrate to you, the top 12 filthiest fruits and veggies, along with the cleanest 15 you can buy non-organic. Here is a handy healthy-chart with which to wield on your grocery store journey. please either save this image to your smart-phone for reference- or print this out and put it in your wallet!
If you do decide to go organic, here’s what you need to know:
Not all organic is organic, and not all organic means healthy. and Definitely ‘natural’ does NOT mean organic. ( infact natural should be entirely avouded all together, ( i cannot stress this enough- calling something 100% natural is 100% health-washing. think about it. ) Serves to be said that the least of evils when buying off the shelf will always be the organic option- however the reality is that there are very very few independent organic brands left.
Why would you want to buy independent? other than the security of knowing that your food is not being mass-produced in some massive factory, by faceless lineworkers who don’t know the difference between quinoa and kamut- the fact is those giant corporations are criminal. 90% of the companies listed on this tree have been accused of human rights violations amidst a host of other unspeakable and ridiculous crimes that are regularly swept under a very large government shampooed rug.
The organic industry is a $15billion dollar per year proposition, and quickly evolving into not much more than a cash-grab for corporate giants who want nothing more than to industrialize the very notion of the term organic, rendering it into just more mass-produced, bottom-line-driven, chemical-laden crap; duping unsuspecting consumers into shelling out 2 or 3X the amount of hard won dollars for products that are often as toxic as their traditional counter-parts. Sickeningly also, in the US – commercial use of the term ‘organic’ is governed by the Department of Agriculture, a Federal Beaurocracy, with deep Monsanto-loyalty and little interest in preserving the integrity of our food system. ( Many of the remaining indie-organic brands have even shunned using the USDA organic label on their products, under the premise that the standards of approval are far too lax and lacking integrity. ) …Still the reality remains, we live in this society and obviously sustain the ongoing need to feed ourselves, so all in all we have little choice but to shop for fuel in the chain-grocery stores that monopolize our markets.
The average supermarket carries more than 30,000 products. Which leads us to believe we have a multitude of options when striving to shop for healthy meals.
The reality is much different. Of the very slim organic pickin’s in the grocery store, nearly all of them are owned by corporations. Even the most pure brands, are no longer indie-owned and it’s
becoming a sad state of affairs.
The UK guardian did a survey on this topic and found that a staggeringly high percentage of consumers are entirely ignorant as to what corporations are behind their favourite organic products. ( although not a shock considering many peeps still haven’t a clue what a GMO is, or even so much as an inkling as to why they would even bother buying organic ) The stark reality is that, many big businesses want it that way. They want you ignorant, in the dark, and drinking the kool-aid perpetually. They want you believing that cancer has nothing to do with what you eat, and that modern medicine is the answer to all that ails you, that you have no control whatsoever over what you choose to put into your body- and while they might monopolize the market, they can never, ever take away your fundamental right to be conscious. So exercising that right becomes more important than ever, and opening the eyes of anyone you can along your way, becomes your dharma and god-given duty as an awakened human in this world.
Some of the staple-shelf items available in most retailers are brands like: Kashi, Boca Burger, Odwalla, Bolthouse Juice, Green & Blacks Organic chocolate, all of whom have fallen into the clutches of some of the most ruthless corporate criminals, and it’s a daunting task seeking out the information by which to empower yourself, when making grocery-store purchases. ( even as a highly-aware consumer- having been keen to this knowledge for years, in doing the research for this piece i came across some surprises myself when compiling the chart below )
Dr. Phil Howard, Assistant Professor at Michigan State University, has been working on exposing the reality of the organic industry since 2007, by cultivating a database that lets consumers know which corporations are behind the organic brands on shelf. And it has evolved in the last 6 years from 30 topline companies, to over 100 brands that have corporate-parents.
So what does the Dr. have to say about the recent trend in organic food?
“On the positive side more and more of our foods are healthier for us, as more and more become certified organic. The USDA standards for organic prohibit genetically engineered and irradiated ingredients and synthetic pesticides. The volume purchasing power of these large corporations has also helped bring down the average cost of organic foods and increased their availability.
On the flip side, rather than rotating crops, major food manufacturers tend to plant a single item, then farm in on an industrial scale using trucked in organic fertilizer. Then harvested product is processed, packaged and shipped all over the world increasing fossil fuel consumption and packaging waste.”
So fellow-warriors, is it a catch-22? Do we be dismayed into paralysis by the industrialization of organic, or do we applaud the fact that the food supply is becoming greener and more organic?
We agree with the professor on this one:
” As the industry evolves, we must address concentration in the industry, where food comes from, how far it travels and by what means, packaging and waste, a living wage for farm workers, preserving farmland and keeping farmers on the land, and continuing to be the front line for sustainability.
However, The success of organic, is a striking reminder that we have the power to influence the way food is grown, processed and distributed. Those who continue to fight for the ideals of the original organic movement should feel optimistic about achieving these goals in the future. “
It’s an interesting thing to watch really, the evolution once these brands have been acquired- particularly how many of the ingredients remain truly organic. Some label-detective work would be wise when choosing whether to continue to buy that organic option… A good example of a turncoat-product here, Is SILK- who makes soy-based beverages, and after being purchased by Dean Foods, without changing their label ( save stealthy removing organic from it ) they made the switch from using organic soybeans to conventional GMO-grown beans.
Beyond the ingredient-watch, we need to be looking up-line and indepth into the backgrounds of these multi-national corporations that are seeking claim of a lucrative organic industry, Dr. Howard told Forbes magazine:
“think about the recent vote on labeling genetically engineered foods in California [Proposition 37], “Transnational corporations with stealth ownership of many organic food brands donated money to stop this effort, which is contrary to the views of the vast majority of all consumers (not just organic consumers).” Coca-cola (owner of Honest Tea and Odwalla), Pepsi-Co (Naked Juice), and General Mills (owner of Lara Bar and Food Should Taste Good) each contributed more than a million dollars to oppose Proposition 37.
At an overall it serves to be said, It would do everyone well to become as educated as possible ’round just what it is, you are fueling your temple with. ( This goes far beyond simple foods, and as we have discussed in different features- you also need to consider what you are putting ON your body, as well as in your body. ) But as it goes, one small step at a time towards becoming an awakened, educated, empowered, Nourished Warrior is all that is asked of you.
There is no escaping it peeps, we live in a corporate-owned world. As we speak, peeps are even trying to patent our genetics- a company somewhere out of the US potentially currently owns 20% of your DNA. ( it’s true. google it. gene patenting is a scary thing. ) So while we can strive to be as clean as possible in our living, the only real way to be sure you are armed with the knowledge that you are living-pure, is to grow your own food, cultivate your own products and live off the land.. ( not as easy as it sounds considering the cost of real estate and the fact that most of our greenspace is also corporate owned, but small steps make big change ) and regardless, in all instances, knowledge is your best weapon.
There is a full list further to the hierarchy chart that we are about to provide that can be found on Nutrition Wonderland, ( bare in mind this list is from 2009, and many brands listed have since been acquired by corporate, so best to refer to the updated chart that will follow here ) http://nutritionwonderland.com/2009/02/organic-corporate-hierarchy/ – this article details a by-brand database of goods, their corporate counter-parts, and the best part is that they have direct links to each of the corporate sites for sleuthing. Also note: there is a ( now depleted, but still semi-relevant ) list of the remaining independent brands here, those brave businesses who continue to boldly stand strong against big-business, if you are going to really make a commitment to going-organic, strive to seek out these indie-brands who remain wholesome amidst a corrupted world.
So at the end of it all, what is the answer, do we continue to seek out local, indie brands at often unaffordable cost, and limited accessibility or do we buy into industrialized organics, because it is readily available to us? The choice is yours, ultimately. If you feel good in that you are making an ethical decision, and the contents of your shopping cart contains a testament to truly exercising your consumer buying power, rock on. But please just remember, your dollas are your hollas for a better world.
While this list pretty much covers the big players, please consider the fact that underneath each of these brands listed- lives a plethora of product lines and individual items, potentially claiming to be organic, all natural or otherwise ethical, when in reality they are not. In addition to this, many of these parent companies listed ( at least 70% ) are Monsanto-owned; as well there are other corporations ( unilever, proctor and gamble etc. etc. etc. ) who on the daily, are trying with all their might to acquire organic and ethical business, with a never-satiated appetite to gobble up momandpopshops.
Here is the hierarchy complete with organic brands, and their-corporate counter-parts. rebirthed, nourished-warrior-style for your printing-pleasure. We will do our best to keep an eye out- and make additions to this as new info comes in. For more information on Canadian products and services that are quality homegrown green, please visit http://www.ecocentricguide.ca
All we ask in return is that you please wield your weapons of wisdom when out there in the world.
SO WTF AM I SUPPOSED TO EAT?!?!?!?!?! –
manifesting a meal plan that empowers : vol. 1 | SHOPPING part 2
So everything is GMO, everything is poison, everything has chemicals in it, everything is carcinogenic and horrible for your health- and if it’s not horrible, it’s an organic product that belongs to a huge corporate criminal. Because of this fact, going to the grocery store is an often stressful act – and in suburban areas without regular access to Farmer’s Markets and fruitstands it can be near impossible to score a fresh, clean meal.
here are my clean-meal must-haves, followed by tips on where to get them and a local grocery chain breakdown. ( yes they are all super-foods and with an easy google you can see why they are in the top ten )
1- coconut oil – get this anywhere. my favourite brand is NOW organic or Maison Orphee but Grace makes a good one + for 6 bucks you can get @ Metro
put it on toast, use it to cook with, on your skin, in your hair, brush your teeth with it, use it to clean… there is literally nothing this super-substance can’t do. in fact, if you do find something, let me know & ill buy you your next jar.
2- hemp seeds – if you could only eat one thing during a zombie apocalypse- this should be it. get these in bulk @ the local healthfood store, typically you can get a pound or two for $15 – the smaller bags are about ten bucks ( you can get samples very often too @ healthfood stores, the sample bags will last a day or so for one person )
3- quinoa – it’s cheap, versatile, delicious, it’s got all 9 essential amino acids, it’s a supersupersuperfood.
4- chia -awesome mixed with all of the above and all of the below. ( tip: sprout it for 2 days to make it a super-super-food. ) top a salad with it, add it to cereal, trailmix, homemade muffins- smoothies, juices, etc. get it @ bulk barn by the 100G or by the bag @ healthfood stores. wherever you can find it cheapest. this is one of the ancient foods that are making a trendy comeback- & the price attests.
5- flax– mix it with all of the above and all of the below. add it to muffins, top salads with it, use it in super-juices and smoothies and you can also sprout it to make it even better for you. (tip: the stuff left over after sprouting is actually a fantastic homemade eco-friendly lube, just ask my friends, The Red Tent Sisters http://redtentsisters.com/you-want-me-to-put-flax-seeds-where/
6- nuts: cashews, almonds, whatever does it for you- as long as they aren’t coated with canola, saflower ( GMO) oil, like many store-sold nuts are.
7- cacao – i have the entire bean in different forms, cacao butter, nibs, powder, – it’s all glorious raw chocolate superfood bliss that can sustain you for days with its magic. the ancient mayans + aztecs actually used cacao as currency, ( it’s my personal belief that if done right, that could make a comeback in the new economy. )
8- additive combos: i choose maca, turmeric, ashwaghanda, hibiscus, triphala powder ( the organic traditions collection pretty much guarantees goodness, regardless fo what you buy)
9- almond or flax milk. i like personally the coconut almond milk. while it’s super-easy to make your own milk from nuts ( not pun intended ) it’s just as easy to buy some. There are more + more brands who are going the way of the nut now- and Earth’s Best- was the brand-to-buy- however now they seem to have during a shift in packaging design, conspicuously removed the GMO -FREE seal.. ( don’t think we didnt notice you snuck in the canola at the same time ) therefore we now make our own. But if you have to buy- you can get SILK brand as an alternative to homemade ( although please keep in mind SILK is now owned by a big ass corporation )
10. fresh produce. this is the sticky one. ( always refer to the dirty dozen and clean fifteen chart above if you are not gong to eat organic produce ) our best organic staple buys are always apples, berries, pineapple, spinach, kale, beans ( garbanzo, navy, anything you want to put into a chili or a salad or a dip ) you may be best to try out a home delivery service if you can afford it and are not close to a good grocery or farmer’s market. There are plenty in T.O. – front door organics,
mama earth organics, there’s culinarium, wychwood green barn and a slew of other goodness especially up there on the Danforth. for those whom are slightly east- there is Durham Organics- starting @ $37 per week you can get your local, seasonal organic produce delivered.
For local Torontonians- living in Urban areas, you have a distinct advantage in that alot of the neighbourhood grocery stores are independent and farmer oriented. Retailers in urban areas are wise to the growing health ‘trend’ and stock their shelves accordingly knowing that the demand for real food- is only going to become greater. Peeps in the Toronto area, make us envious for there is no better a place to shop than the Big Carrot in the Carrot Common on the Danforth- a wonderland of ethical products, an eco-haven for non-toxic household supplies and a veritable escape from the un-ethical practices of franchise grocery store giants that make up the majority of the suburban shopping-scape. Most of the products you will find in a retailer like the Big Carrot will be organic, local and free of most GMO’s – and of course will be priced accordingly- with markups that will give some of us shoe-string budget conscious & ethically conscious shoppers- a hard hit to the wallet; however it’s worth it if you can put faith in knowing that what you are buying will not make you sick. For those of you in the outskirts of the GTA- in suburban places, you will have a bit more of a challenge when it comes to navigating the chemical maze of the grocery store, so let’s have a look at a few things to watch out for when shopping for your weekly meal planning.
a few notes on other grocery chains:
– used to have a pretty good selection of organics and in the last year or so- did a province-wide sweep of stores that included renovations and consequently loss of most of the organic shelf-space. they have now just a teeny-tiny space for produce peppers, tomatoes, kale, broccoli and some other staple items can always be found here. Of all the Chain groceries- Metro has the best organic produce selection.
• Get peppers, Kale, Broccoli, Apples, Oranges, Yams etc.
* has its own brand of quinoa that is called ‘bio’ sells for $2.69 a bag and one of those bags is good for at least a 2 day meal for 3
* they also sell Bob’s redMill products, all of which are on the yum list.
* have picked up local Toronto Vegan brand- sweets from the earth– which if you are a sugar or choco-junkie, is a delightful thing. They make amazing gluten free brownies, cheesecakes and now cupcakes. ( just remember gluten free and organic does not always mean sugar free- and each teaspoon of sugar can suppress your immune system for up to 6 hours- bare that in mind when you are shopping in the winter months when germs are all-over)
Sobeys – has a pretty poor organic product section- in fact it’s shoved off in a corner of the entire department itself, allotted only a small amount of floorspace- and thus the offerings are limited here. Often times you can find deals on items such as blueberries, strawberries, celery, mushrooms, onions, and sometimes- but not always, salads. I would suggest if these items are on sale- stocking up and freezing the produce that will hold up well under frosty-temps, so that you can rely on the fact you will have these items available for making smoothies and the like.
Sobey’s has recently undergone some sort of weird rebrand that seems to be all about Jamie Oliver- i’ve joked with the peeps that work there they should run a contest to see if someone can guess how many Jamie heads are in the store ( it’s that ridiculous in there) HOWEVER, they have devoted a whole, new, amazing aisle to organic and healthy foods. Nut butters and cereals and staple items and drinks, alongside home-cleaning products and personal care needs ( which i wont be discussing in this piece but are a massive part of your overall detox program ) Nevertheless- look here for deals on some organic staples like beans, quinoa, gluten-free pasta, sauces, canned tomatoes and crackers.
The other chain grocery’s do not deserve a mention beyond this: We live in a time and a society that considers healthy, organic and whole food- a luxury, not something deserved but a luxury reserved for those who live beyond basics ( this couldn’t be further from the truth ) but it is the reality- so having said that- what do you think you will really find @ any place that is refers to Basics, Frills or otherwise?
In the next piece, i will be hooking you up with some staple recipes to start your transition with. In the meantime, this is alot to digest, may i suggest drinking at least 3 litres of water to aid the process…Which leads me to the ultimate lesson in lifestyle transformation – l’aqua. The # 1 key to healthy-living is water. doesn’t get simpler or easier than clean, pure water. I now luckily have a local-hook-up who keeps me quenched with alkaline water on the weekly- which is an amazing gift for which i will ever be grateful. Another little known fact that contributes to the illness of so much of the population is that many if not most of us, are highly acidic. Our bodies are toxic, inflamed, just straight up acidic. In order to maintain optimal health we need to maintain a healthy PH level in our body- which is ever-more difficult to do considering how difficult it is to eat and live clean. The very first thing i would do- if i was a newbie on a detox plan is make the transition from normal tap or bottled springwater- ( which is FULL of dirt and sediment completely invisible to the naked eye ) to Alkaline water. I’ve got a local hookup who will fill your first jug for free. ( more on him later, too )
that’s it for now, as you dig into this whole new world of wisdom, remember the highest level health and happiness all depends on love. the love you have for yourself, and the love you know you deserve. giveyourselfsome. xoxox whilst you are on the journey to cleansing your diet- you may also be interested following along with my my feng shui your universe series– the first installment is all about releasing baggage, emotional, mental, spiritual and otherwise. ‘relationship feng shui’ – letting go of all the people, relationships, associations, circumstances and unhealthy people who dont serve your highest level good. This is all part of the mastercleanse and with each beautiful, brave, bold step you take towards becoming clean- you will become empowered, nourished and closer to embodying fully- your innate Warrior.
Next up in your own personalized series ms. J is- conscious eating: #superfoodsnackinonabudget: top 10 super-clean, superfood meals for under 10 bucks a day
Nourish Your Nature.
– The Nourished Warrior