Wednesday, November 21, 2012

A Healthy Life by Jenna Vick Silliman

My size 20 jeans from 2003 "before".
I lost 75 lbs. in 1 year eating raw.
Wearing size 4 now "after" 9 years.
One of the things I am most thankful for is a healthy life. I am slim, energetic, and have no health issues. At age 54 this is unusual! In the year 2003 the Lord helped me to successfully lose 75 pounds and continues to help me keep it off. Here’s the short version of my story.
In the year 2003, at age 45, I weighed 222 pounds. (I now weigh 147 and wear size 4.) That summer a friend took a picture of me, wearing size 20 with a big belly, double chin, and a puffy face. I knew that it wasn’t me—I felt like a prisoner inside of an obese body. I was miserable. I had tried every diet I knew about and had lost and gained hundreds of pounds since my teenage years. However, I didn’t know how to maintain after losing excess weight and I would always gain it back.
In addition to being obese, I had headaches, neck, back, and knee pain, arthritis, and I was constantly sick and tired. After I saw that photograph of me, I desperately cried out to God for help. “GOD, I AM SICK AND TIRED OF BEING SICK AND TIRED AND FED UP WITH BEING FAT! PLEASE HELP ME!”
A friend shared a story of a woman who lost excess weight and regained her health by eating an all raw vegetarian diet. I had tried eating 80% raw vegetarian—but it amazed me she ate this way 100%. The author wrote that the raw fiber, raw fats, live enzymes, perfect pH, high water content, and high oxygen content of raw produce are all satisfying to the appetite and that cooked food (especially cooked carbs) trigger overeating.
I read about twenty books and dozens of websites and people eating this way all said the same thing—they felt great and lost excess weight. I read I could eat all I wanted of fruits and vegetables as long as they were raw. The normal weight loss to expect was 20 pounds the first month, ten pounds the second month, and about five pounds per month thereafter till reaching the ideal weight range—then weight loss naturally stops. I knew this was my answer. I said, “Thank You, God!”
I talked to my husband and he said, “I think you should do it. I will fully support you, but the boys (four sons) and I are going to eat normally.” I agreed. (They continue to eat differently than me, but thankfully they all like fruit and eating salads, so there is a lot of good healthy raw produce in their diets.)
Just like predicted, in one year I lost 75 pounds and all my health problems went away and I became a new woman. That was about nine years ago and I am still rejoicing and enjoying being slim and energetic and healthy! Here’s what I normally eat in a day.
For breakfast I enjoy two or three pieces of fruit and a whole avocado —whatever fresh fruit I want—till I’m full. Before lunch I grind up a tablespoon of golden flax seed mixed with chia seed that I have in a jar on my kitchen counter. I grind it in a little electric coffee grinder that I bought at Wal-mart for about $15 that I only use for this purpose. I either stir this into water and drink it, or sprinkle it on my salad.
I enjoy my main meal in the middle of the day. I use about a fourth of a cup of extra virgin olive oil with fresh squeezed orange for my salad dressing. I eat sort of a “Waldorf” style salad every day with the following ingredients: orange, apple, grapes, grated carrot, celery, red bell pepper, raspberries, berries of other types if available, sprouts, other veggies, and 8 ounces (10 cups or so) of dark green leafy lettuces or “spring mix” with spinach, romaine, green and red leaf lettuces. I also have a couple of hard boiled eggs from my friend’s free-range-naturally-fed-happy chickens. For dinner I have a couple more pieces of delicious, fresh fruit (whatever I want) and a banana. (I am very active in the evening, dancing and flagging a lot, so I eat my evening meal after I get home.)
See my YouTube entitled “Raw Vegetarian—How I Eat” for more info.
I also enjoy a handful of raw sunflower and pumpkin seeds (or other nuts and seeds) each day. Nuts and seeds can be ground with the flax and chia seeds and sprinkled on my salad, or I will enjoy chewing them. (I limit nuts and seeds to about a tablespoon to ¼ cup a day at the most because I don’t feel well if I eat more.) Best source for truly raw and fresh nuts and seeds is: and lots of nutritional information is free on this website.
Once in a while I enjoy fish—I especially enjoy some baked wild Alaskan salmon with a double order of steamed vegetables (with no butter or salt). This is what I will order if my husband and I go out to eat to celebrate an occasion. At times I splurge and eat something else, but then I’m sorry because I don’t feel well. People ask how I have such will power. My answer is from Philippians 4:13 Amplified: “I have strength for all things in Christ Who empowers me. He infuses me with supernatural willpower!”
My sweet treats are fruit. For example, right now persimmons are in season. Yum! I also enjoy cherries when they in season, nectarines, plums, black berries, figs, mangos, etc.—delicious and nutritious fresh fruit made by God especially for us!
I went through healing events or natural detoxing when I started eating this way. Our miraculous bodies layer the toxins in the fat stores, so as we lose weight and the fat is burned off, the toxins are released into the bloodstream and we don’t feel too well. I just rested, took hot baths, and drank plenty of water and these times of feeling weak and tired and flu-like passed. After a bout of detoxing I would feel really great and lose weight, so it was worth it. The detoxing went in ever decreasing cycles—heavier bouts at first, then lighter and lighter. Sometimes I detox for an hour or two and get through it and feel great. I use no medicine, no pills, no potions, and no powders. I use no stimulating substances like coffee, chocolate, or soda and I use no pain-killers of any kind. My beverage of choice is WATER—that’s all I drink.
I do not eat like the average American, but I’m not sick and overweight like the average American either! Most Americans die of heart disease or cancer. I would like to die surfing in Hawaii when I am 107. Hahaha!
Eating this way has plenty of the macro nutrients—protein, carbs and fats, and plenty of the vitamins and minerals we need, for example: sodium (natural salt of the type our body uses) and B12 etc. There is no need to add a thing! It makes sense too. In the beginning God put us in a garden and basically said, “Here is your food and it is very good!”
In case you are wondering, I am not eating anything different for Thanksgiving dinner. I will eat my normal fare and for a treat enjoy some ripe, juicy persimmons and give thanks. “Thank You God for delicious raw produce and for a healthy life!”


David said...

It is awesome to lose the weight! I too felt awful, tired and lots of things hurt!

I change to a whole food diet which contains no processed foods. Then I started running. I am still running - 5K - 10K and now getting ready for a 1/2 marathon. I hope to do a marathon before I die.

I feel great, I certainly look better, and for that, I am grateful.

Thanks for sharing. Happy Thanksgiving!

Tony C said...

That's awesome! Good for you for knowing what needed to be done and finding the means and resolve to do it!

Now coach me :)