As many of you know, I’m in the middle of a major weight loss challenge. It’s no joke. I have to lose a good 15 pounds (25 would be ideal, but I’m being realistic and leaving room for major muscle gain, which I’ve been experiencing big time) by the end of April for a big “After” photo in the June issue of Today’s Parent Magazine. Can you say “eek”?!

I’ll be posting updates on how I’m doing in a new blog on Todaysparent.com. When I have the link I’ll give it to you asap.

In the meantime, I’m loving the green smoothie my naturopath Jennifer Baer recommended for me. And after stepping on my scale this afternoon, I realized that every time I get into a green smoothie kick, I start to lose weight. Every time. I just started drinking them again this week and my weight is ACTUALLY dropping. And I think it’s the kale.

Yes, kale can taste disgusting in a smoothie, but, I’m telling you it does wonders for weight loss. And when you have the right ingredients, and if you blend it well, a kale smoothie can be quite yummy. I splurged a while back on a Vitamix, and I haven’t looked back since. With a 7-year warranty, the exorbitant price is well worth it. ANYWAY! Here are the ingredients. Just dump them in and BLEND WELL:

1 cup kale
1 cup berries
1 banana
1 cup soy/rice milk
3/4 cup apple juice
1/4 cup sunflower seeds
cinnamon to taste

Sometimes I add chocolate Vega Shake-and-Go Smoothie powder for extra protein, omega 3s and chocolaty goodness….

Makes 2 servings (refrigerate for a snack or breakfast the next day).


Photo: daveeza

Since I can’t post as much as I’d like here lately, I’ve asked some friends to help out. Welcome Mr. and Mrs. Raw, otherwise known as Mike and Jennifer Laur. You can read all about their journey toward the raw vegan lifestyle in their adorable, inspiring bio (and great read) HERE. Take it away, MIKE!

Hello everyone. Lets talk movies.

I am a movie fanatic. And if you give me enough hours in a day I’ll watch as many movies as I eat goji berries.  And I eat A LOT of goji berries.  Just ask Jennifer, she has to bring them home from her store all too often.

But for me films create a complex world of stories and memories and like my goji berries, I couldn’t live without them.

I get laughs, I get scared, I get thoughtful, I get all the things I expect to get from a great film, I even get tears…ah, well I mean, from all those fresh onions Jen cuts up.

But how often do we watch a movie that changes our lifestyle?

The six movies below have affected me and Jennifer profoundly. In fact, Food Matters was a film that changed our paths even before the end credits rolled. We knew we had to change our lives immediately, and in the four months that have passed since we watched the film we have become a 100 percent raw foodists.

But that’s what it takes sometimes. You don’t have to be sick or in pain or whatever rock bottom it may be for you. In some cases all it takes is a great movie to  just wake you up and send you off as a new student just about to enter the doors of a new school of thought. The other five films can be just as life changing and I hope they can affect you in the positive ways they have for us.

But don’t stop there! Continue on a you’ll find a few delicious raw recipes from Jennifer that you can munch on while you view your film. No need for popcorn!

Mr. and Mrs. Raw

1. Food Matters


This is an exceptional film and happens to be a great one for the uninitiated as well. And it makes perfect sense. You are what you eat. From raw food to superfoods, organics to vitamin supplementation, this movie covers it all.

2. Simply Raw: Reversing Diabetes in 30 Days


You mean food has the ability to cure me? Most of us are dead set on science and conventional medicine to make us better but this movie is an inspiring look at 6 diabetic individuals and the journey they make towards a cure through raw foods. The results are astonishing.

3. Crazy Sexy Cancer


Cancer. The very thought of it can cause fear. How would we react if we were
told we couldn’t be cured? This is another uplifting film that documents survivor Kris Carr’s journey into experimental healing as she stumbles upon raw food. It is filled with stories of strength, determination and humour.

4. Our Daily Bread

Ever thought about how your food is created in this high tech world of production? This is a unique film that uses powerful imagery to reveal just what process our food is subjected to. Without narration the film provides the viewer with the information to create an opinion without corporate name dropping and biases.

5. The World According to Monsanto

How far will corporations and governments go to make a profit? Even your food is at risk. A detailed look at how a company like Monsanto is working towards a global seed stranglehold and the dangers we all face with GMO foods. This movie solidified my belief that organic food is the only way to eat.

6. Blue Gold: World Water Wars


I would say most North Americans take water for granted. I certainly did until I viewed this movie. And eventually if we continue down the path of environmental destruction and excessive waste we might all see the effects of water deprivation and privatization. Thanks to the World Bank and IMF, poor economic countries are already witnessing the misuse of their water. Could you live without water for more than a week?

Raw “Where’s the Beans?” Hummus

2 zucchini, peeled and chopped (about 2 cups) leave peels on for a green hummus
1/2 to 3/4 cup raw tahini (put 1/2 cup if you don’t really love the taste of tahini and 3/4 cup if you love it!!)
1/2 cup fresh lemon juice
1/4 cup raw olive oil
2 to 4 cloves garlic depending on your own preference
1 tsp sea salt
1/2 tbsp cumin

Process all ingredients in a food processor and process to desired consistency.  Eat with cup up veggies or some raw crackers.

Fresh Rawtastic Guacamole

4 avocados
1/2 small red onion chopped fine
5 to 6 cherry or grape or one small tomato chopped
1 lemon or lime juiced
1 to 2 cloves garlic pureed
1 tsp cumin
1/2 tsp salt
1/2 tsp pepper
1/2 to 1 hot pepper finely chopped (jalapeno if you have) or 1 tbsp of hot sauce (omit if you do not like spicy!!!)

Add all ingredients together and mash either with a potato masher or with a fork.

Sometimes I like to add cucumbers finely chopped to add some more crunch to it.

Also if making this dip for a lot of people puree up some celery and add it to the avocado to increase the amount of dip without using more avocado, plus it is a good way to get some of that celery goodness without the celery taste, for all those who dislike celery!!!

If making the dip ahead of time, put the pits back in, as it helps keep the guacamole  green.

Enjoy with organic chips or raw crackers.

Michael currently works in an advertising company, but with tasty food, proper nutrition and amazing health constantly on his mind his goal has him in enrolling in the Natural Nutrition program at the Canadian College for Natural Nutrition next fall. He is constantly inspired by the likes of Victoria Bountenko and David Wolfe.

His wife Jennifer works at Organic Abundance, an organic grocery store in Toronto and is lucky enough to spend all day talking about organic food, looking at organic  food and eating organic food!!

Please check out their extended bio: “Did My Meat-Loving Self Just Call Me a Veggie-Loving Pansy?”


Whenever I go to one of my favourite health food stores in Toronto, Organic Abundance, I not only stock up on wholesome goodies, but also knowledge. They’ve got some wise vegans over there, including one Jennifer Laur.

Jennifer Laur is a raw vegan, and she — like a growing number of peeps from all walks across the globe — are loving this eco-friendly and truly tasty way of life.

Maybe it’s the trademark youthful glow of these raw vegans (Jennifer looks amazing), I’m not sure…. But, I want to get ON THAT! I mean, it makes sense. When you cook something, as the theory goes, you’re killing all its key nourishing enzymes. While I don’t believe one has to go completely raw to reap the benefits, I do think the more raw you eat the better. I certainly feel better since I’ve consciously added more raw into my diet.

So, Gorgeouses, meet Jen. Jen? Meet the Gorgeouses. Jen’s going to help us add more raw into our diets by bringing on the scrumptious recipes now and then. Starting with this delightful raw vegan Caesar Salad. I tried it just tonight. And, while it doesn’t taste EXACTLY like Caesar (I may have used too much lemon juice, and I didn’t have any coconut on hand), I loved it, and, more importantly, my picky little eaters each ate A BOWL of salad drizzled with it. So, there you go. TRY IT!



1 head romaine lettuce
1 cucumber, chopped
1 red pepper, chopped
1/2 cup red onion, chopped
1 large carrot shredded
1/2 cup dried coconut, grated


2 tbsp olive oil
1 lemon, juiced (2 tbsp max, I’d say)
1 tbsp honey (vegans who don’t eat honey can substitute with 1tbsp agave nectar)
1 large garlic clove, pressed
1/2 tsp sea salt
1/4 cup pumpkin seeds, ground


1. Combine the lettuce, cucumber, red pepper, onion, carrot and lettuce in a large bowl.
2. Mix all the dressing ingredients together in a bowl.
3. Pour dressing over salad. Toss well, and serve!

Again, I didn’t have coconut on hand, and I decided to omit the onions. So, I’d say these two items are optional. The shredded carrots, however, are a must. Their juice somehow adds to the richness and texture of the dish. ENJOY! And let us know what you think!

Thank you Jen!

xo Haley-O