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Annette: A 70 year old raw foodist who looks 30

Annette Larkins’ backyard garden is full of fruits and vegetables. Every corner of her garden has something that is edible. She also collects rainwater to drink and water her plants. Annette says the food in her garden is her Fountain of Youth.

“I am very vibrant, I have lots of energy, as I told you before, I am up no later than 5:30 in the morning as a rule, and I am ready to go,” she says. Annette’s husband owned a meat store in the 1960s. That’s when she became a vegetarian. As the years went by, she became a raw vegan. Annette says she does not eat animal products. Her food is unprocessed and uncooked.

“My diet consists of fruits, nuts, vegetables and seeds. I do a lot of sprouting of seeds and as you can see from my garden and of course these are the raw foods that I eat,” she explains. Annette also juices fruits and veggies. Still, not everyone in the Larkins family eats and drinks this way.Annette’s husband Amos chose to continue to eat the way he did when they were first married. “I really wish I would have done what she did,” he says now.

Amos says people even wonder if Annette is his wife. “They will ask me ‘what am I doing with a young girl? or they will say ‘you’ve got your granddaughter with you,’ things like that.” Amos takes prescription medicines daily for high blood pressure and diabetes. 

Annette says she does not even take an aspirin. After friends and strangers kept asking her questions about her health and youthful appearance, she decided to publish two “Journey To Health” booklets, and she produced a DVD 12 years ago.

So how old is this size 4 beauty? Annette just turned 70-years-old.Annette says friends her age see the difference in her quality of life. “This one lady who is my age, she was telling her friend, that I used to tell them about eating and they would not listen and her response to that was look at her now, and look at us,” she says. Her husband says she is vibrant person.

“She is an amazing person, she does everything. I mean she builds computers, makes all of her own clothes, grows her own food, speaks three languages, it’s amazing,” says Amos.

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Power Fruits for Spring

Okay, so you’ve read over and over again, eat more raw fruits and vegetables and now that beautiful spring has arrived, I bet you simply cannot wait to dig into the fresh, sweet natural goodness of raw fruit! Well, why don’t you get out of your comfort zone and check out more than the typical strawberry or apple (although strawberries and apples are fabulous, too)!  Check out these beautiful spring fruits and try to incorporate them into you daily life – in smoothies, in salads, in salsas and straight up!  Your taste buds and your bod will be pleasantly surprised!

Blueberries: With one of the highest antioxidant capacities among both fruits and vegetables, blueberries can actually increase your blood’s ability to absorb antioxidants in the first place! And if that’s not cool enough, one cup has 35% of your daily value of vitamin K—a nutrient that’s vital to bone and blood health. Studies also suggest that they can lower cholesterol and even improve memory.

Mango: Mangos are high in phenols and fiber, which are both associated with a lower risk of cancer. The high iron content in mangos makes them a perfect food for expectant mothers. Mangosare also great for digestion,  healthy skin, and sex drive. Cutting them can be a little tricky, so check out this tutorial from Simply Recipes. Check out this super easymango salsa, too!

Kiwi: Just one of these green superfruits contain 120% of your daily vitamin C needs. And get this—kiwifruit has been proven to protect your very DNA from oxygen-related damage. If you need any more reasons to love kiwi, it’s known to significantly reduce asthma symptoms in children. When choosing a kiwi, gently squeeze the fruit; a ripe kiwi will give just slightly. Toss some sliced kiwi into your next fruit salad for a tropical twist!

Tomato: Yup, they’re a fruit – at least botanically speaking. A member of the nightshade family, tomatoes are best known as a great source oflycopene, which is shown to significantly reduce osteoporosis in women and risks for certain kinds of cancer. The versatile fruit is known for lowering cholesterol, improving heart health, and in some studies, preventing neurological diseases like Alzheimer’s. Choose tomatoes with rich colors and a smooth, tight skin! Slice up your favorite fresh-off-the-vine tomatoes and toss with olive oil, fresh basil, balsamic vinegar, sliced cucumber and a pinch of sea salt for a refreshing summer salad.

Watermelon: Summer is closer than you think, and this sweet and crunchy treat is a perfect complement to the increasingly warm weather. Watermelon is a great source of vitamins A, C,B6and B1. (And since the refreshing taste is best enjoyed outdoors, it might help you get some sunnyvitamin D, too!) When buying cut watermelon, look for deep color with no white streaks. If buying whole, look for a heavy fruit and a smooth rind. For a different and delicious way to prepare watermelon, toss a few cups into your blender along with a some mint leaves. Sip, sigh, and relax.


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Can I Eat Meat on a Raw Food Diet?

One question we get asked all the time is do you have to become a vegetarian to be on a raw food diet? The answer is no. The raw food diet is not strictly for vegans, it is for everyone. Whether you are looking to move to veganism or slowly incorporate more raw foods into your daily routine, the raw food diet benefits everyone in some way. 

Many people on a raw food diet, or detox, often start small by simply adding more raw fruits, veges, nuts and grains to their daily consumption. It doesn’t even have to be daily. Instead of fast food a few times a week, a raw food meal can replace this and you are on your way. You will still notice benefits of the diet even in smaller doses. The raw food diet is about getting healthier and stronger through changing your lifestyle a little bit. In the end though, how far you take the raw food diet is completely up to you. 

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