Learning to eat …

January 17, 2013

Reconnecting with this blog and with raw food (& What I ate Thursday)

Filed under: About Me, FOOD!, Health, Questions, Simply Eating — Tags: , , — tamiofbrooksgroth @ 6:30 pm

So my Blendtec blender is being sent in for repair and *now* is the time I am feeling the urge to reconnect to the raw food world a bit??? It will be like starting over brand new in trying to eat raw food with only the most basic of appliances.

I hope to update what has happened along this journey more in the midst of some simple “what I ate” posts along w/ reflection on how I am feeling as well as how fitness now fits into this wellness approach.

NOTE — if you happen to be reading this blog and know me in real life — I am intentionally not posting these posts to Facebook for the moment… I need a separate space to continue this learning journey while still in a public sharing forum

So first what I ate Thursday
(my first post on this was somehow deleted from my ipad so no fancy formatting 2nd time around!)

Breakfast was a bowl of smashed up banana, apple, orange, blueberries, chopped pumpkin seeds, ground chia seeds –> yum! I ate it at about 8 a.m. (after a cup of green and tulsi tea) and was truly filled until nearly noon when I was able to come home and start working on lunch

yerba mate tea w/ lemon and honey throughout morning

Lunch –> huge chopped salad of beet, zucchini, summer squash, lots and lots of spinach, sunflower seeds, raisins, sesame seeds, olive oil, coconut vinegar, dijon mustard,

Afternoon snacks/drinks: chamomile tulsi tea and other herbal tea & raw carrot cake bites (carrot, walnuts, raisins, coconut, date) –> would try to post recipe link but to me they didn’t turn out great but that could be poor quality carrots possibly; also had a few cashews while cooking, etc.

Dark chocolate coconut drops (made during the holiday season)

Supper –> “Fruit Ice Cake”!!! Nessa asked for this recipe so it was our supper! — unfortunately this is not on a blog but was send in a newsletter (http://www.facebook.com/rawfunfamily is their FB page). The “cake” includes a crust of banana chips and dates, a layer of mango puree (I used frozen mango) and a layer of blended frozen bananas) and some frozen raspberries! … Basically this ends up like a frozen pie as it is layers of blended frozen fruit on top of a crust of banana chips and dates blended/chopped together

Most interesting thing so far about this is that Nessa wanting to make this recipe is part of what is pulling me to pay more attention to eating raw … that, and coming off of travel where I ate out way more than usual I think 🙂

It’s not that I wasn’t eating green smoothies that last few years — I was. Also salads (large and filled with veggies) were very frequent on the list! But there had been a shift, several actually back and forth and now this is part of it … learning to eat is certainly a process!

February 10, 2009

Quick note for those new to the blog…

Filed under: About Me — tamiofbrooksgroth @ 10:25 am

Hello and welcome!

I’ve been sending … and seeing more new faces around here … which reminds me I have a lot of blog housekeeping to do around here! Recently this blog has basically been a food journal for me. I hope you can benefit from that, but if you want more, please let me know how I can help! I plan on making this blog much more informational while still keeping it personal. What information can best help you? What can most inspire you? What do you want to know? Need to know? Merely curious about?

To tell you how I got where I am today will take longer than this post, but if you read through the entire blog you’ll get a good idea … in short I started to gain health and in the process started loosing weight … a lot of weight (currently down about 55 pounds … of course due to ill health I was up a lot before I started to loose). I did indeed gain health though — I went from chronically fatigued and chronic IBS, low thyroid, fibromalagia pain and more — to being totally energetic and totally PAIN FREE! And from all my reading I really, really believe nutrition and food is the key and that anyone can improve their health in the same way.

Is is always easy? Well, of course not. But what truly worthwhile thing every is??

Seriously, after gaining my health it’s much easier than most people would imagine though, and very, very doable!

Currently I eat fresh raw fruits and vegetales and LOTS of greens (I’m starting to seen greens as their own category!), and some raw nuts and seeds as well as near daily coconut oil and some high quality olive oil (sparingly) … and when I’m sticking to my target for optimum health — that’s it! In reality I do eat some cooked whole grains or gently steamed/water cooked veggies, and once in awhile during this journey I experiement how a few other items affect me — but NO gluten EVER  (unless it’s by accident or cross contamination) and NO Dairy –  EVER as it’s too addictive and I don’t feel it has any nutritoinal value for me (more on that eventually), and finally no animal flesh ever anymore and that one I have decided is a final decision for me as well. This means I eat mostly vegan, but have occasionally had eggs yet and do eat honey, so I don’t call myself vegan.

I will be posting more each week about my own food goals, but I want to stress that in many ways this continues to evolve as I refine what I eat for optimum health and nutrition (while certainly allowging for lots of enjoyment!). My entire journey to this spot has been such an evolution of myself and my eating … hence I made sure “learning” was part of this blog’s name.

I will also be posting more about all the fantastic little changes that my family is making in their diet, and those posts may be of more interest to those of you not ready to jump to a raw food diet as my family is not limited to raw foods nor are they vegetarians. However, my family has increased thier intake of fruits, veggies, and greens A LOT, and we do keep a gluten free household.

Until then I’ll direct you to just a few great websites and blogs for more info — there are many more than these, but these are a few of my current favorites:

Green Smoothie Girl! (be sure to visit Robyn’s blog too)

Raw Family


The Green Smoothie Blog

The Raw Divas!

Raw for Change!

Kristen’s Raw Blog

Fertile Healthy Blog

Raw Mom Blog

Also, network with us on Facebook:




January 2, 2009

Raw Cravings and The Importance of Greens

Filed under: About Me, Challenges — Tags: , , , , — tamiofbrooksgroth @ 3:32 pm

I have just returned from vacation, and like all vacations it meant vacation eating. It was pretty healthy all things considered, but vacation eating none-the-less. And now that I am home I am craving all sorts of raw food goodies — and especially fresh raw soups. In fact it was interesting to see the broccoli soup as the last post on this blog because creamy broccoli soup sounds so good right now. I’ve also been dreaming up some celery soup as well. I think I’m seriously addicted to celery.

I learned a lot while on vacation. I learned a lot about myself in general and a lot about food and my eating of food, and how it affects me. I will write more about that later; however, today I had one simple little ephinany that I want to share right away — the greens are it when considering the MOST important food type you can eat!!! Much research shows the importance of greens, but I just confirmed this for myself. I think eating an ABUNDANCE of greens is more important than being raw foodist (70% or more raw food consumption), eating vegan, eating low fat (or more importantly “right fat”), or just about anything else I can think. Besides the nutrients involved I know that greens help in keeping the body correctly PH Balanced (alkaline instead of acid), and I’m sure this is also important for my personal health.

So, what led to this ephinany? Well, lots of little things as I looked back at the foods I’ve eaten over the last few weeks and the result of how I feel and look (I have pimples again for the first time in months). Yesterday I decided that I would start the year out 100% raw, and I did. But I was tired and in the evening I went to bed with an upset tummy. Now this is likely due to either plain over consumption (loved those jicama sticks a bit too much), using too much spice (chili powder), or just bad food combining. But … it made me realize that I also hadn’t had any greens all day as I had started the day with a mono-meal of “melon milk” (blended cantaloupe … yummy but no greens). And shortly after that my eyes started to itch the familiar allergy itch that I haven’t felt in MONTHS except for days that I haven’t eaten my greens … so this time it clicked that it was indeed the missing greens as the culprit. Proving again to me that often it is as much what one is NOT eating as what one IS eating.

This is probably why consuming green smoothie daily as my start int raw foodism and PH balanced eating was so important, and how I was able to see such dramatic results.

Someone once said that they start their day with greens because they never know what the rest of the day will bring. I think this is very wise, and something I should do my best to follow in 2009! 🙂

I’ll be off to the store this evening to stock up on the makings for various raw blended soups, green smoothies, green juices, and more. And I’ll be getting ingredients for one more complex raw meal as well, this week likely pizza, as Shawn has practically requested that I experiment each weekend with a raw meal for the entire family because he so loved what he ate that at the Ecopolitan in Minneapolis. 🙂

Looking at recipes and raw food blogs has been a great inspiration for me — here’s to a great 2009!!!

November 30, 2008

No Wonder My Pants Were Falling Off! (weight loss and more at the end of the Body Enlightenment System)

Filed under: About Me, Challenges, Health, Today I ..., weight loss — Tags: , , , — tamiofbrooksgroth @ 11:19 pm

groth_34-2Whoa! Time to check in with my Learning to Eat blog because I have certainly been learning to eat! The BES ends tomorrow, and it has been an incredible month. It’s truly the beginning of permanent changes for so many wonderful people. For me personally it has meant a refining of what I eat and how to eat it, AND at the same time it has been full of emotional processing and release. While I’ve lost weight and inches, I have GROWN in the many important ways.

I’ll share the numbers with you first. I want to point out the completeness of the numbers and encourage any of you that are interested in weight loss (remember my primary goal is total health), to measure more than just weight. I’m glad that I have the scale that measures body fat as well. Even if it’s not the most accurate BF calculation possible, it still shows that even when the scale isn’t going down as fast as it seems it should that I am indeed loosing fat. Also I’m SO glad I started the month with taking measurements because now I have concrete numbers to look at about what is changing with my body. For those of you not inclined to take measurements, then simply looking at how your clothes fit can be a great guide as well … my measurements confirmed what my clothes had already been telling me – I was loosing inches off of my hips, butt, and belly!!! This is good because this is where all my fat went the last few years. J So, off it comes now!

Month of the BES (Body Enlightenment System) by the Numbers

  • Weight lost: 7.2 pounds
  • Percent Body Fat Lost: 2%
  • Inches Lost: 11.75
  • Clothing sizes change: -2 (from sizes 18/20 to sizes 12/14! … no more XL!)

Official Measurements on 11/30/08
Waist: 37 (-2)
Chest: 41 (same)
Hips: 43 (-3)
Right Thigh: 21.75 (-1.75)
Left Thigh: 21.5 (-2)
Right Arm: 13 (same)
Left Arm: 13 (-.5)
Belly 43 (-2.5)



Body Fat %

Inches Total

May 2008






















Loss to Date:




But I have to tell you that the weight and inches that are coming off is truly only a fraction of what is happening. For me personally I am also gaining so much insight into my health in so many ways, and even more than that my emotions and spirit are evolving in ways that feel really good.

Abundance of greens and veggies!

Abundance of greens and veggies!

So, if I was learning about raw foods, the importance of eating greens, and a alkaline diet before the BES program, what did BES do for me? Well, first there was a HUGE amount of support both personally and as part of a community. That support and sense of community was so helpful at this point because eating such a unique diet can be isolating, especially as the holidays approach. There was also a sense that someone would always be there to reach out to with questions or for support—someone that understood the process I was going through, and likely someone armed with information to help.

BES also has a fitness component and I’m sure that is why my bottom has begun to disappear. As I’ve both done my 20 minute minimum each day and also started integrated more activity throughout my day (squats, push ups, etc. throughout the day). And Tera makes the fitness component SO fun with fun names and challenges for everything. I feel I’ve made a breakthrough with fitness again because I realized yesterday, when I didn’t do my 20 minutes on the rebounder, that the day just didn’t seem quite right. I now know that I feel and do better when I start my day with that 20 minutes (or more) of heart-pumping activity.dcp_5757

And something I had no idea before starting the BES program is that it includes not only LOTS of encouraging affirmations, but also daily worksheets and a commitment to make changes. I found the daily worksheets were very empowering as they showed me daily all of the great choices I did make with meals and fitness, AND they gave me the opportunity to list the things I plan to do, check them off when I did them, and list what to improve on tomorrow.

The most powerful line on the sheet though is the one that lists one thing you could do today that you’ve been putting off. So each day I was encouraged to do something I had been putting off. For me, and especially this month, was HUGE. This alone could have transformed my life this month. It’s a process and there are still a couple of things left for me to list on that line this next week before I even have to think hard about what I might be putting off – but I have accomplished so much. And in the process I’ve let so much of the negative energy attached with procrastinating things! J (Praise God!)

A Wonderfully Savory Green Smoothie

A Wonderfully Savory Green Smoothie

And then there is the hardest thing to talk about – the emotional processes of the BES program. I think it should be called Total Person Enlightenment Program! And I learned how these things go together. I learned that processing emotions and digesting foods are two things that each take a LOT of energy. In fact that can take so much energy that your body often can’t do both things at once – this means you can effectively stop your emotional processing by eating – hmm stuffing our emotions quite literally! This also means that when you don’t eat as much, eat things that are easier to digest, or do a fast (we do water or juice fasts on BES for partial days) – well, then the emotions are free to flow! This can be overwhelmingly surprising for someone that thought the emotions were already dealt with! But no we have many layers of emotions and I think I’ll have to do much more fasting (and then praying/meditating) before I’ve peeled off all of the layers!

The BES program gave me the support I needed to go ahead and start feeling and processing some complicated emotions. Those that know me know that my daughter’s birth/death anniversary is November 10th and November has been a really, really hard month for me for the last seven years … I went into this November with all positive affirmations and feeling really great. I thought I was just going to peacefully remember my sweet girl, but no my spirit, now free to emote away, had other ideas. So, for a few hours I was thinking maybe this was not the time to be doing the BES program, but then I realized that I maybe would not even have been able to access those emotions if it were not for the BES program. Now that is powerful!

Now that the program is over, but the evolution of me continues. I will be part of a continued coaching program with Tera from The Raw Divas, and I will continue to post on the Green Smoothie Blog, and I’m sure I’ll do another live session of BES in the future. Additionally, one of my post-BES goals is to stop ignoring this blog. J I’m going to get back to posting nearly every day simply about what I’m eating no matter how mundane it sounds to me. I want to do this for future reference for myself as well as so that everyone knows what I’m eating. I’ll also occasionally update my fitness activities, and hopefully do some really juicy posts all about vegetables and how I’m continuing to learn to eat!

Yours in health ~ Tami

P.S. Are you joining me on the 24 Day Green Smoothie Countdown to Christmas?

October 31, 2008

Some Goals (Weight Loss)

Filed under: About Me, Challenges, Health, weight loss — Tags: , , , — tamiofbrooksgroth @ 9:39 am

I mean goals other than feeling well — healthy, vibrant and all that. 🙂

Why wait for New Years?!?

I’ve been encouraged that even during this challenging week when I’ve done very little for exercise and have had a mini chocolate bar or two (mostly fair trade at least), that I’ve still dropped a little weight … and the Body Enlightenment System is just starting this Saturday so things should just get better and better!

So, I started thinking about what could happen if I kept losing weight a couple of pounds a week on average.

And I decided that if that happens, these would be reasonable goals:

  • By Christmas Vacation (December 17th is approximately when we leave) — be at 170 pounds or less
  • By Easter be at 145 pounds or less (April 12th; lent starts Feb. 25th)

Earlier this week I verified via medical records that according to the scale at the clinic I was at 220 in May 2008, so I’m going to use that as my “highest weight” even though I think it may have been a tad higher before that. So, according to that I’ve lost 30 pounds so far!

According my my medical records the weight was slowly starting to come off about the same time I slowly increased my percentage of raw food. Looking back I would guess that it was about August when I became about 95% raw, and started actually paying attention to it closely. I’ve also discovered that I feel the best with primarily fruits, vegetables and greens. This means I do eat some nuts and sprouted grains, but that isn’t my daily diet at this point.

If I meat my goals, I’ll have lost 50 pounds by Christmas and a total of 75 by Easter!!!

After that I think my goal will just be to increase my physical fitness and stay healthy. I think that will mean continueing to eat a high raw food diet, but I’m not sure what percentage that will be. I may include more cooked whole grains in my diet at some point, especially in the winter, but remain low/healthy-fat vegan (wild and brown rice, potatoes, etc. — macrobiotics or McDougal eating plan?),  and still eat a high percentage of raw foods including green smoothies daily. I can’t imagine going more than a short while without green smoothies at this point. 🙂

I’m also thinking very seriously about doing a juice/Green Smoothie fast during lent, but I’m not committing to specifics yet at this point. I do feel very strongly about doing something like this though. Having a juicer at my house before that would be a requirement though. 🙂

OK, now that this is out there in the public world, I just need to make some reminders around my house. 🙂

Looking at it this way sure makes those couple of pounds a week look good!

In Health and Happiness —

October 5, 2008

Check out the new Green Smoothie Blog!

Filed under: About Me, Today I ... — Tags: — tamiofbrooksgroth @ 9:01 pm

Green Smoothie Blog

Have you all discovered the new Green Smoothie Blog on the Raw Diva site? Check it out: http://www.greensmoothieblog.com/! I’ll be posting there about once a week. As I said in my initial post, please send me an requests for what you would like to see on the blog or who you would like to read about. Also, send photos and videos you would like to share!!! And please comment (here and there) because the only thing more energizing than Green Smoothies is blog comments! 🙂


A picture of me not drinking a green smoothie 🙂

September 2, 2008

We will now be returning to your regularly scheduled blog posts…

Filed under: About Me, Challenges, Today I ... — Tags: , , , , — tamiofbrooksgroth @ 12:05 am

I apologize for the interruption in posts on this brand new baby blog. Just over a week ago my family and I were in a car accident. It was minor by most accounts, but in addition to shaking us up emotionally it also too over our schedule in the form of doctor, chiropractor, physical therapy and other appointments, and the time it takes to fill out form after form after form relating in all different ways to the accident. Oh, and we were tired, very tired.

Then we decided to keep our scheduled long Labor Day Weekend trip plans (Thursday to Monday). We returned home a few hours ago, and will now start our fall schedule along with all those added appointments and many more forms to fill out. However, I’m not nearly as tired so regular posts will return this week. I’m hoping that in addition to continueing to answer the question, “what do you eat anyway?”, I’ll be able to do some special posts about crisis eating, eating while healing from trauma, and eating while traveling. One thing I realized during our all-day car trip back home today is that I will have to really prepare to be sure our Christmas car trip (WI to TX) to be smooth in terms of food so that we stay healthy so we can enjoy the holiday (no gluten cross contamination! — which we again experienced this weekend unfortunately) — will be one of our goals as we plan our holiday trip). I hope others will be able to benefit from our research and experiences.

Health and Happiness to all of you as we embark on our fall schedules —

August 24, 2008

A wonderful birthday indeed…

Filed under: About Me — Tags: , , , , — tamiofbrooksgroth @ 4:33 am

Back on August 2nd I received some wonderful encouragement to continue on this journey of wellness through nutrition and raw food … birthday presents!

I smile with delight after opening one of my presents...one of my requested cookbooks

I smile with delight after opening one of my presents...one of my requested cookbooks

Cookbooks were the theme of the morning, and I spent much of the weekend devouring them (and trying a few recipes).

Nessa, Megan, and Shawn in the kitchen on my birthday

Nessa, Megan, and Shawn in the kitchen on my birthday

Nessa helps Megan while making my birthday cake

Nessa helps Megan while making my birthday cake

In addition to presents, they made me my much requested Carrot cake. While it was gluten free (wonderful recipe from the Silly Yak email list, let me know if you want recipe via comments), it certainly wasn’t raw, and in fact it had an old fashioned cream cheese frosting. Yumm!

At that time I was eating transitionally toward going all raw. That continued most of the month. This week I’ve been as close to 100% raw as possible the entire week! It feels great. And the encouragement my family offers me by doing things such as all those wonderful cookbooks has really helped. I think it’s going to be a great year!

Stay tuned to see how this journey of food discovery brings about positive changes this year. 🙂

And, in case you’re wondering, I’m 37.

August 21, 2008

Can you feel my excitement?

Filed under: About Me, Challenges, Health, Today I ... — Tags: — tamiofbrooksgroth @ 8:26 pm

I am so moved and excited by being a winner of one of The Great Green Smoothie Awards!!!

This blog was inspired by the challenge as well, and I knew when I started it that I was still at the beginning of my journey. I can’t even begin to express how meaningful this challenge and the past week has been to me … but I’m sure I’ll find some words eventually.

Thank you, thank you, thank you ….

July 22, 2008

Join me in my journy while learning to eat …

Filed under: About Me — Tags: , , , , — tamiofbrooksgroth @ 1:55 pm

There is no way to start except to do it. International Green Smoothie day is inspiring me to get started on this blog that I have been thinking about for awhile. I have lots of ideas — regular photos of the fruit and veggie basket that hangs above our kitchen sink now, green smoothie of the day recipes or notes, what’s for lunch notes … mostly short posts about what I’m eating to help me along on this journey. And to share my enthusiasm for how wonderful and right this feels — eating lots of raw food and greens while eliminating lots of stuff that was apparently dragging me down (gluten, dairy, and well most cooked food) — there will be longer posts as well, but those will be less frequent.

I’m also going to put a disclaimer here, that this blog is about food not writing. So, while unlike my family blog, I may edit a bit, I will be doing quick email style posts much of the time. So, if you’re a potential employer in the technical writing industry please release that these posts are equal to a very quick draft. If someone was willing to pay me to do this, I would take more time to edit (I would also be thrilled).

Many of these posts will also come from flickr.

And one thing I’m certain of is that this blog will evolve over time which is why I titled it “Learning to Eat” rather than focusing on only green smoothies or raw food.

Please join me in my journey —


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