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The Official Blog of The GEM.

Diamonds on your inside. That’s what we want. Don’t you? This blog is a place to visit for guidance, humor and wit about healthy, happy lives. We only have one life. Make it count!

Category Archives: Detox


Be vibrant—Form a Plant Based Diet, including JUICE!

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JuicerowGEM girls believe juicing is an incredible tool in an arsenal to “reboot” a sick body and mind. It is a significant component to an overall plant-based, whole foods diet—which is the key to vibrant health. It is powerful stuff!

This is something I learned firsthand. I discovered what juicing and alkalinity does to a compromised system when I went through a year-long battle with cancer and chemo. This experience was more than just inspiring and medically apparent for me, it completely changed my life!

But WHY is juicing and a plant based diet such an effective means of changing one’s health—whether the goal is vitality, weight loss or even disease reversal?

Two words: Micronutrients (OK, one, but it sounds more dramatic that way). Cells in the body require micronutrients (i.e. vitamins and minerals) to function optimally. When cells receive adequate micronutrients, you feel energized and full. These are nutrient-dense foods. On the other hand, many foods simply provide nutritionally worthless calories and are devoid of the essential nutrients our cells crave. These are calorie-dense, nutrition-poor foods that weaken your body, i.e. things that come in a box. a nugget, or a drive-thru.

A Plant-Based Diet includes vegetables, legumes/beans, seeds and nuts, just like we do inside The GEM.  This diet contains foods that are minimally processed too, with the majority of nutrition coming from plants. This diet is incredibly powerful in achieving optimal health. Plants provide:

Fiber

Diets high in fiber are associated with lower risks of heart disease, colon cancer, diabetes and obesity. It keeps everything moving.  LIterally. There is fiber in broccoli, beans, apples, among other vegetables and fruits. HOWEVER, none will be found in the nutritionally void world of white bread, chips, burgers and most other processed foods.

Phytonutrients

This group of nutrients give the gorgeous colors to our veggies and bring about many health benefits. Found only in plants, phytonutrients are anti-inflammatory and anti-cancer. SIGN ME UP. Think GREEN. Or blue, or red, or yellow. There are perhaps 10,000 of these health-promoting chemicals in the edible plant world. (You’ll never find phytonutrients in a Big Mac.)

Antioxidants

Many chemicals (these are good chemicals) found in plants help resist the damage that occurs to the human body from oxygen and the process of metabolism. Chlorophyll, the green energy found in plants, is liquid sunshine that detoxifies and energizes. It’s anti-aging at its best.  Surely the fountain of youth is made of chlorophyll! Oxidation leads to cardiovascular disease, diabetes, compromise brain cells. Our dear friends in the plant world contain TONS of natural antioxidants.

Omega-3 fatty acids

These essential fatty acids are used for the internal workings and repair of cells throughout the body. These are GOOD FATS. They enhance and nourish brain function and help our systems run smoothly.  Flaxseeds, chia seeds, hemp seeds, algae are rich in this nutrient class. AND…ALL FATS ARE NOT CREATED EQUAL!

ALKALINITY

Greens are highly alkalizing to our systems—which is what we want. Disease thrives in acidic environments. CANCER LOVES ACIDITY.  All processed food, dairy and animal products are acidic in our system. Greens are great for improving circulation, lifting the spirit, purifying the blood and strengthening the immune system.

So …. how does this get us back to The GEM and juicing

GEM_slide1It is recommended that we consume five or more servings of vegetables and fruits daily, though many authorities set the bar much higher, being optimal at 10 servings a day. We believe that 80% of what you consume should be plant-based!

In order to consistently ingest this large amount of plant-based material, you need to do some planning. REMEMBER: If you keep good food in your fridge, you will eat good food!

Some ideas to get your greens: prepare large vibrantly colored salads (our KALE salad rocks), add greens in protein-rich soups such as our lentil soup, and blend smoothies with berries, hemp seeds and greens for a power breakfast or a snack. You’ll never taste the spinach! Keep hummus and veggies nearby to snack on in a pinch. Bottled green juice is an awesome option to start your day.

Juicing is just one more tool you can use to build a plant-based nutrition program rich in phytochemicals, and it can make it easier to reach your goal of 10 servings a day of vegetables.

By juicing daily, you provide your body with a high dose of naturally-derived nutrients that boosts your health, support your body’s natural cleansing processes and helps keep you protected against toxins and disease.

Juice:

  • is easy to digest and the nutrients are easily assimilated.
  • is an incredible energy booster, full of chlorophyll, aka liquid sunshine—the real Red Bull.
  • is full of live enzymes, vitamins, and minerals.
  • makes it easy to get more veggies  
  • can curb appetite, and maintain blood sugar levels.
  • makes you happier. Goodness in … goodness out.

Whenever possible, focus on organic foods. Organic really does matter.

Juicing and a plant-based diet will bring you an authentic health and mood boost. I promise!

Any questions?


Juice Cleanse Yourself to Health & Lean, Clean Living

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It’s a New Year. Does there need to be a new YOU? One that has more energy, vibrance and control? Juice cleanse yourself back to health and lean, clean living!

You hear “juice cleanse” all the time. So what exactly does cleansing mean? Generally speaking, it means that you rid the body of the toxins, acidity, sugars and chemicals that cause you to retain weight, crave poor foods and zap your energy. This is done with alkalizing foods and juices that help turn up the body’s detox systems. Often times, this is accomplished with a juice only fast.

We’ve seen SO many of our GEMs kick off this new year with our juice cleanses, and they’ve had amazing results. Fasting, too, has many benefits – benefits that are proven over literally thousands of years of experience. Its roots are founded in meditation and achieving mental clarity and focus for so many who practice fasting.

However, juice cleanses are not for everyone.

Lifestyles are different. Personalities are different. Body types are different. They work out too much, they entertain too much, they just like to chew too much. They want something less intense.

That’s OK! You can be amazingly clean and cleansed with food as part of the regimen. It can spark a vibrant lifestyle that you can do everyday for the rest of your life. We GEM Girls live that every day and we want to make it easy for you to do the same.

We’ve created an active lifestyle program filled with organic juices, detoxifying whole foods and snacks that heal, sustain, cleanse, make you look good and your body feel FABULOUS! Pop these items in your (GEM) bag and go!

Soooo … What’s in your GEM bag?

These 3, 5 and 10 Day GEM BAG Juice and Food Cleanse regimens are based on a whole food, plant based diet and combine salads, juices and soups enhanced with rich proteins from seeds, grains and beans. All meals, juices and snacks provide extra calories and protein along with ingredients perfect for detoxifying and weight-loss.

Benefits are:

  • Radiant skin is regenerated with daily anti-inflammatory, alkaline ingredients
  • Daily juice floods your system with nutrients that detox, quell hunger, bring vibrance
  • Every meal is planned for! No thinking, no hunger.
  • Practice a Whole food, Plant Based Diet and be ready for your new lifestyle!
  • Organic, nutrient dense, satisfying foods that are full of flavor
  • 2 levels, for those who want MORE GEM GOODNESS, there is more to eat!

 

Juice ‘til Dinner Cleanse

Juice 'til Dinner

The GEM Juice ’til Dinner Cleanse

Want just a little bit more GEM Goodness? Too much going on to skip eating – The Juice ’til Dinner cleanse is easily incorporated into a hectic lifestyle – five organic juices for the day plus dinner. It can be a great way to kick off a healthy diet plan or as a weekly reset button to keep weight off, energy up, and the body and mind healthy.

It includes amazingly delicious and satisfying organic, cold pressed juices followed by one of our nutrient dense salads or soups and CALM tea. Allowed Anytime: sliced celery, carrots or cucumbers with lemon

GEM Workout Cleanse

The GEM Bag Organic Juice Cleanse

The GEM Bag Workout Cleanse

Like extreme workouts? Like to eat? Want a softer step into healthy? This GEM Bag Cleanse is perfect for anyone with an active lifestyle or who needs a little guidance to the doorway of clean eating and detox. With this cleanse, you can continue your activities as you like—except of course, for the processed foods, animal protein and alcohol. NOT alkaline. This is an excellent way to learn how to eat a whole food, plant base diet. Or just a great way to feel and look good!

This Cleanse offers more protein and more energy.  Included are two whole food GEM meals, along with four organic GEM juices, one Hail Merry snack, one power shot, and nightly CALM tea.

Price: $155/$250/$500; 3/5/10 Days

HOW YOU CAN DO IT: RESERVE YOUR NEW GEM BAG CLEANSE FOR NEXT WEEK. Your body will thank you!

HOW WE DO IT: Your meals and juice cleanse or juice cleanses are clearly labeled with the order we recommend to eat or drink. We offer email support before and after your cleanse and bright smiling faces all along the way.

THE GEM DIFFERENCE: Organic, cold-pressed juices AND whole-food vegetables, herbs and spices give your body juices, snacks and meals filled with protein and fiber helping to cleanse your body.

Allergy information:  We have no dairy, wheat or gluten in our meals. Special considerations can be made, just ask!


December Bloat Buster: The Cleanse

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December is a crazy month of parties, fun, stress, eating, drinking, the list goes on and on. You may think there’s no point in a cleanse before the holidays.

Peace. Happy.  Juice Cleanse.

Peace. Happy.
Juice Cleanse.

So wrong!

In fact, it’s almost a must that you cleanse right now. You may believe cleansing as a short, intense retreat into super-restricted eating that you do after lots of binge-ing. This doesn’t have to be the case. It can be a daily practice. There’s no wrong season for clean eating.

Daily Cleansing is a great way to get you through the holidays without taking on excess toxins and destructive eating habits.

A Daily Cleanse will:

  1. Rid your body of the toxins that stimulate cravings. It’s hard enough to turn down all the sweets, eggnog and mashed potatoes – you certainly don’t need your body begging you to gorge on this stuff.
  2. Create a healthy balance. You don’t need to feel completely restricted when you are cleansing. Your body can recover from a few cocktails or a piece of cake if it’s coming from a place of optimal health.
  3. Keep you feeling in control. There is something very empowering about having a regimen of clean eating. Mindfulness of it all can be an incredible weapon in your quest for vibrance.

Many people are scared to commit to cleansing right now because you think you have to miss out on everything that is fun and social. That is simply NOT true.

Yes, a full GEM juice cleanse is amazing and makes you feel like a million bucks, but that doesn’t always fit into our social schedules.

Try our Juice til Dinner, or even doing a day in the life of a GEM. The menu below is how we roll on a daily basis. You can live a cleansing lifestyle and still enjoy delicious, tasty food.

FIRST THING UPON WAKING: 32 oz. filtered water with lemon and take a Bio Kult probiotic and Nordic Natural Ultimate Omegas.

  • Green Glow by 8
  • Radiant Glow or a GEM smoothie by 10, plus more water
  • Lentil soup and kale salad for lunch
  • Flawless at 4, plus 16 oz of water
  • If you are staying in, consider Arugula and Mushroom salad and some hummus for dinner. Alongside a chopped veggie salad. The food is so vibrant and nutrient dense that you cannot over do it.

The Dinner Party: If you are going out, see the tips below:

  • Keep a Small 3 Bean Salad or small quinoa in your fridge. Eat it before you go out to your cocktail party. This will help keep you satisfied and eliminate the crazy craving for too much bad stuff.
  • Stay away from the puff pastries, the cheese tray, the pasta. Find the shrimp, the veggie and hummus platter, the sushi. Once you’ve had one type of appetizer, don’t revisit it. You know what it tastes like, now stop.
  • Really try to keep the alcohol to a minimum. Your sugar levels spike and your willpower plummets. You don’t have to completely restrict yourself to feel good in the morning! This is a great way to keep your cravings in check or bounce back after last night’s office party.
  • Remember the party is about the socializing and friendships. Save the whale feeding for another time.

Don’t put this off until the New Year. Take charge of your life now. Indulging isn’t about throwing all caution to the wind, it’s about finding balance. You can have both during the holiday months.

Make this holiday your happiest and healthiest and GEM~miest yet.


Here’s to a Disco Happy, Healthy Thanksgiving

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Peace.  Happy.  Gratitude.

Peace. Happy. Gratitude.

We all want a Disco, Happy, Healthy Thanksgiving right? It can be an energizing, inspiring holiday if you let it be – one of thanks (duh), gratitude, friendships, yummy foods, family. An all nourishing kind of day – the body and soul.

It can also be a draining, heavy, toxic holiday. One with over-indulgence on food and booze that leave you feeling bloated and depressed. And it gets worse. You let energy vampires disguised as aunts, uncles, siblings, etc., swoop in topped with nonsensical family traditions.

 

 

To make this Thanksgiving a Healthy Thanksgiving (it is currently my favorite), you can do a few small things that may result in some big changes:

  1. Do it yourself.  Make sure you have at least two clean sides for Thanksgiving. It may mean you bring them yourself—which is even better! Alice Waters, Rozanne Gold, Mark Bittman, they all have amazing cookbooks that will rock your world. GEM Hummus with veggies, Hail Merry Royal Blend nuts (conveniently available at The GEM). Shoot, come pick up a few of our arugula & mushroom quinoa salads and tell everyone you made it yourself!! It’s a PERFECT fall salad. 100 Days Of Real Food has good, clean recipes and is an amazing resource to feed your family better. Dreena Burton of Plant-Powered Kitchen has a few recipes on her site.
  2. Center yourself. The holidays, even with all their glitter and excitement, can be emotionally draining. Family dynamics, loneliness, financial issues, and just the intense insanity of it all can be overwhelming. Take some time for yourself the night before by drawing yourself a nice warm bath with CALM Sports bath and lavender oil (Epsom salts can work too) or do what I do—excuse myself to my closet for some deep breathing with a few key stretches before the festivities start. Allow yourself to decompress. It’s ok. We need to take care of ourselves first! By nurturing yourself and taking time to get centered, you’ll be able to steer clear of bad choices and emotional eating.
  3. Prep yourself. Start your morning with 32 ounces of filtered water followed at least 30 minutes later with a vibrant green smoothie with a couple of tablespoons of raw Happy Hemp seeds. (1/2 frozen banana, 1-2 cups spinach, ½ cup blueberry, ½ cup frozen cherries, 2-3 T of raw hemp seeds, 1 cup water). I SWEAR it will make your day go better. Plus it fills your body with satisfying nutrients that will help you make better decisions for the rest of the day.
  4. Don’t be hard on yourself. Thanksgiving doesn’t always have to be a day of over indulgence. But, let’s also be realistic … stuffing happens. Pecan pie and whipped cream happen. If you do go deep off the wagon, you can always get back on that vibrant, healthy band wagon again.

Plan to get back on track as soon as the last turkey sandwich is served. Even better, schedule a 4-Day GEM Cleanse to exorcise the gluttony demons and be back brighter than ever!

Have a gratitude and laughter filled healthy Thanksgiving. We love you, GEMs! See you back for more GEM goodness soon. Hugs all around …


8 Simple Detox Steps You Can Do NOW!

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From a distance, achieving a cleaner, healthier lifestyle seems daunting.  There are foods you’ve never eaten, supplements you’ve never heard of, and exercises you’ve never dreamed possible. Sure, when you start climbing that mountain of health, the pinnacle is nowhere in sight.  But Rome wasn’t built in a day, so don’t expect a new lifestyle to simply appear when you blink your eyes. Gradual changes to your daily life will put your body and mind on a path to healthier and happier living.

rainbow-background

Be Vibrant!

So many of our GEMs ask how they can get clean—to feel better, look better, think better.  They have no idea where to begin.  I had the fortune (or misfortune if you are a half-empty kind of guy) of being scared into a clean lifestyle.  One day I was sipping/guzzling Hendricks and sodas living an incredibly toxic life (food, drink, people), then BAM!, the next day I am down in the depths of a super strict, super alkaline, orthorexic-to-a-fault, rid-my-life-of-toxic everything way of life. But you don’t need that kind of fear.  You need a few simple tips to get you on your way.  It’s about being mindful of your body and your environment. Once you can see the benefits of these small changes, your body and your mind will DEMAND more.  THEN, we can talk  about diving deep!

  1. Drink 32 ounces of clean, purified water upon waking.  This means before you drink your coffee, before you go for your run, and certainly before you eat that huge breakfast.  Add a little lemon if you like for added alkalinity. Your body has been detoxing itself for the last 8 hours.  Flush out these toxins.  The water is not only cleansing, it is hydrating and energizing.  TRUST ME ON THIS.
  2. Deep breathing exercises every day.  Measured breathing,(pranayama) filling your belly first and inhale through your nose for 6 seconds, then exhale for 6 seconds. Repeat 8 times. Calms the mind, reduces anxiety and tension, increases metabolism, energizes, strengthens the immune system.
  3. No artificial sweeteners, no artificial colors. Never. Period. Studies show sweeteners can raise insulin levels, cause brain tumors, foggy brain, migraines, fibromyalgia, cancer. Artificial colors are made from petroleum and cause ADHD, and certain cancers among other things.  Seriously, this sh*t is toxic.
  4. Add an extra green to your day.  Add steamed broccoli to your salad, spinach to your smoothie (you can’t taste it, by the way).  Green juice is a great way to to get lots extra veggies. If you want a good recipe, email me! I’d love to share.  Slice up some cucumbers and sprinkle with lime and sea salt. Just one EXTRA a day.
  5. Daily probiotics.  This should come in a pill format—NOT Activa yogurt.  Probiotics are the healthy bacteria our digestive tract needs to keep our bodies healthy.  Our immune system primarily resides in our digestive tract.  The healthy bacteria has been sabotaged with processed foods, antibiotics, and other chemical stresses we put on our bodies.  Sunbiotics, a brand we love and use, brings the good bacteria back so it can fight off illness, enhance digestion, remedies constipation and believe it or not, improves mood and thinking.
  6. Omega Fish Oil.  Nordic Naturals are the cleanest, freshest fish oils on the market–and the only brand the GEM recommends.  These vital nutrients help quell inflammation, boost brain health. 2-3 grams/day.
  7. Brisk walk 3-4x week for atleast 30 minutes.  Good for circulation, mood, metabolism. Duh. Just do it.
  8. Sleep. Get some. Atleast 8 hours.  Adequate sleep will keep your cortisol levels in check (things that make you hold on to fat), keeps your mood elevated.

Practice these 8 things every day and watch a transformation begin. Daily GEM dosing and an introductory meal plan is next on the list, but that is for another day….

Peace and Happy and Juice.