After visiting Colorado this past week, and leading a few Raw Cooking Classes, this article was written in the Intermountain Jewish News. Just thought I would share, as I felt honored to have had such a nice article written about me.
WHENEVER I would hear that someone is a rawtarian, I assumed they were limited to eating carrots and celery sticks or other fruits and vegetables.
I love the flavors of fruits and vegetables, but all day?
And only raw?
It’s not as if I ever considered becoming a rawtarian, nor will I be converting to it now.
But I now understand what it actually means.
And I will make a good, conscious effort to incorporate more of that raw produce goodness into my life.
Because I had the enriching experience of hearing and learning from Julie Auerbach, originally of Denver; today Chanah Auerbach of Israel, where she is founding executive chef of Briah Living Foods.
I joined a raw food demo hosted by Chanah at EDOS last week.
I came in curious about expanding my wellness repertoire. Certainly, by the time I left that was actualized. I understood that raw food is about eating food that is alive, but it was so much more than that.
Between the raw almond milk, vanilla shake, jicama fries, peach cobbler and my favorite, the spiralized zucchini, corn and tomato pasta salad, I left inspired.
HERE’S THE story. Of all people, Chanah or anyone from the Auerbach family are the last people on earth you would imagine becoming a vegetarian, let alone a rawtarian. I mean, we’re talking about The Auerbach’s. For generations, meat distributors in Colorado. If they don’t qualify as the definition of carnivores, who does?
With her constant smile and between the whizzing of a blender and tossing of salads, Chana, in her tall strong and charming personality, graciously, openly, tackles an emotional and vulnerable topic and shares how she arrived at this food journey.
Chanah is bald. She has alopecia.
In her early twenties, she was coping with feeling very ill, weak, and losing her hair. After trying everything it seemed, to no avail, someone suggested raw vitamin supplements.
It did the trick, and Chanah had found her calling.
Nuggets of wisdom flow from Chanah’s soul and leave her mouth as easily as her delicious recipes.
“Eating dead food makes you feel dead, whereas eating live food creates life,” or, “we’re built to heal ourselves.”
Her presentation is laced with humor, kindness and a lot of food intelligence.
For example, “when eating something new, it takes 10 times before the body accepts it.”
I never understood the whole point of juicing. I’d heard of people doing it, but didn’t really get it. If anything, I had learned that juicing is negative, as it removes the fiber.
In two seconds Chanah demystifies the whole issue, explaining how important fiber is, but that consuming fiber is work for the body. So every once in a while, give the body a break. Flood the cells with nutrients (i.e., juice) without making the body work. It’s a healthy break for the body (not as a regular habit, though). That fiber-less drink, as a break, is what those juice cleanses are all about.
CHANAH IS trained as a chef, but clearly along the way she has amassed a lot of nutrition knowledge that she integrates with her love of cooking healthy, nutritious and raw food.
Another layer: Chanah’s faith, and even intimate dialogue with G-d, shines through.
When answering a question from the audience about her hair growth, part of her answer includes “at this point G-d is just laughing with me.”
Chanah talks about health accountability and encourages building community around eating healthy as support and encouragement for maintaining good eating habits.
She is real, though; she doesn’t come off like a pretentious perfect health-eating angel who doesn’t know or understand the human craving for treats or the social aspect of food.
She’s normal and validating. And therefore motivating.
Salt, raw honey and raw cacao, soy, vitamins, yeast, acid, spices, alkalizing, sprouting, and so much more, Chanah’s presentation was dotted with tons of information. Any comment or question that was raised, she clearly had a command of the topic.
Her cooking, her faith, her kindness, all combined into one thing: Chanah’s teaching.
She taught us how to prepare delicious, healthy food, how to think about our bodies and eating well, how to talk to G-d, and how she talked to her young students about her baldness.
Most of all, through her short one hour presentation, the presence of Chanah’s spirit taught us most was her unspoken lesson of overcoming challenges with confidence and grace.
And what true beauty actually is.
Copyright © 2015 by the Intermountain Jewish News
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