Jenny Lapan shares her Top 20 Tips for bright and beautiful people. Jenny was born in 1981 in a suburb of Washington, D.C. She grew up playing soccer, basketball, softball, tennis and ping pong. At age 14, she took up field hockey, playing competitively and coaching for the next twelve years. Later, she took up running, yoga, weightlifting, Pilates and anything else active (you get the idea).
Along the way, she experienced surprisingly low energy, sleep disorders, fatigue and dietary confusion despite her best efforts. At age 19, Jenny began a typical path in a search for health from vegetarian, to vegan, to raw, to a sustainable, long-term, high-carb, fruit-based diet, about which she is enthusiastic. She is an artist, athlete and human girl seeking truth, clarity and happiness throughout life. She can be found either at the gym, at the movies or on Twitter at any given time.
1. Fruit does not and will not make you fat. I know that most of those reading this article already agree. But please, tell your sister, your mother, your co-worker, your old friend. Fruit does not make anyone fat. Fruit loves us and is the most glorious gift from the planet that we have (other than love). Fruit is not a jealous lover, she will always take you back, she is unconditional.
2. The body is chemical environment, and every body is different. Someone may think that fruit makes them gain weight or that they need meat for protein or iron, but they do not. Get your body into a lean, clean, plant-powered, high-vibrational chemical environment, and anyone can thrive.
3. Anyone can be vegan. There are no macro (or micro) nutrients that cannot be obtained from a vegan diet. Yes, some can be supplemented for various reasons, but anyone can be vegan. Any human being can be vegan if he or she makes the decision to be vegan. There are no body types, no blood types and no dosha types that cannot live a healthy vegan lifestyle. If you want to be vegan, you can be.
4. Vegan is best for the planet. I’m not the kind of person who wants to “make” everyone go vegan. I respect your choices and you respect mine. There just doesn’t seem to be much opposition to this fact. Vegan is better for our environment and overall mentality as a species!
5. Go 100 percent raw for two years. Just go gung-ho about it and don’t look back. After two years, you’ll be ready to loosen up on food and compromises. Healing occurs on a 100 percent raw food diet. That seems like a hard fast law of nature. You can’t heal from very much on a cooked vegan diet. There are benefits to a cooked diet, but healing is not one of them.
6. Have an intelligent backup plan. Your backup plan should not be vegan pizza or Clif bars. Those types of things should be your emergency plan, or perhaps your recreation plan (if you have done your two years fully raw vegan, and/or you can safely return to stable, healthy eating patterns). Have a smart backup plan that you’re comfortable with. Limit grains and beans, but be flexible.
7. Don’t beat yourself up over cooked food. Every meal is a chance to start anew. Get a steamer or a stainless steel double-boiler and be prepared to cook whole foods if you need to.
8. Stay active. Exercise most days. That amounts to at least four days per week.
9. Try to do a short fast. Try to do a supervised fast if you can (True North Health in Santa Rosa, California, is great). But you can do a short fast with a friend (two to four days). This can definitely kick start the process of balancing out your body and preparing your temple for positive change.
10. Drink a lot of water. You will be more beautiful as a result. That should be motivation enough.
11. Have a hobby! Have a lot of them! Being healthy, happy, fit, active, balanced and energetic have so much more meaning when you have a direction to take yourself in. You can do anything now.
12. Get a scale and use it! I know, many people (women!) advise us to “throw away our scales,” but I wholeheartedly disagree. Get comfortable with your scale and use it at least twice per week. I recommend using one that measures body fat percentage. Although they are not extremely accurate, each individual scale will be calibrated to at least give you an estimate of the direction in which you’re headed. Gaining or maintaining weight while losing body fat percentage is a good thing for many people.
13. Keep a food diary (if you want to). This seems to be a debate among fruity people, but I personally enjoy keeping a food log. You don’t have to log your exact calories per se, but generally tracking your eating habits comes in handy, especially if you run into problems later or have specific goals.
14. Learn to practice natural body care and detoxification. I find great personal satisfaction in this. Natural body care practices such as tongue scraping, skin brushing, self-massage, moderate sun tanning and use of essential/natural oils can put you very much in tune with your personal detox process. Don’t be afraid to detoxify. It’s a fun, cool, new experience, and it’s very self-educational.
15. Neither restrict nor force feed your calories. Your daily calorie needs can vary quite a lot. It sounds cliché, but learn to listen to your body. You are your own guru—all the knowledge you need is truly inside every one of us. Your body knows much more about health and fitness than your mind. We’ve been conditioned and bombarded for many years with false information and over-simplified advice. Do what feels best, always. Learn to differentiate pleasure from escapism. Health and happiness are yours to be had, but you have to be honest with yourself and you have to give it some time. You are your own best guide. You are a self-master! Never restrict calories or feel guilty for your hunger. Never force yourself to eat, either. Don’t let people on YouTube tell you how much to eat! You are the captain of your ship, end of story. The scale will come in handy while learning how to eat the right amount.
16. Hang out with fruitarian, raw, vegan, healthy and athletic people! Obviously!
17. Try to eat something raw with every meal. Even if you eat some cooked food with dinner, it’s great for your digestive system and your palette to be in the habit of consuming raw fruits and veggies every time you eat. Get used to the volume and taste of raw food.
18. Learn to balance your electrolytes naturally. It makes a big difference.
19. Don’t worry about what kitchen equipment you do and don’t have. You don’t need any of it.
20. Try not to look too far into the future or compare yourself to other people. Your experience is yours alone. “Always remember, you are unique, just like everyone else!”
Check out Jenny Lapan’s transformation story!