Posts tagged dehydrated at low temperatures

Q and A Series: People, Products and the Health of Our Planet – Interview with Sequoia Cheney, CEO of Wonderfully Raw

For the fourteenth interview, I have the pleasure of introducing you to Sequoia Cheney, CEO of Wonderfully Raw – makers of Coco-Roons, Brussel Bytes and Snip Chips

Even though Sequoia was unable to answer the questions I sent her, she provided me with a great article that tells her story.

HOW I FOUND MYSELF ON THE RAW ROAD
by SEQUOIA CHENEY

Sequoia Cheney in the kitchen with an abundance of fresh raw fruits and vegetables

Sequoia Cheney in the kitchen with an abundance of fresh raw fruits and vegetables

I find myself sitting here thinking about how grateful I am to be where I am right at this moment. I feel grounded, strong, healthy, vibrant and full of energy. I have to thank creator for making me choose health.

That has not always been the case. I was starting to believe that my days of being cute and attractive were over. I convinced myself that I had to accept being over weight, tired and old. That was what the rest of my life would look like. I was a grandmother and old people just don’t feel that good.

I was diagnosed with Type II Diabetes about five years ago.

I think I was in shock and really didn’t understand how serious diabetes could be for the rest of my life. I did not even know what it really meant to be diabetic. I went through the diabetes education programs that my medical doctor recommended. I took my medication. I started to follow the dietary recommendations and realized that following these guidelines was not the answer. I was fooling my body and myself thinking I could eat just like everyone else, with a lot of packaged, preserved foods with lots of artificial sweeteners. This was not helping me cure my diabetes and or get to the core problem in my body. I decided to do my own research and started my own healing journey through diet and exercise and a spiritual practice. It has taken me five years of hard work, perseverance, and commitment, and many tears to heal myself.

As I said I started with the recommendations from the Diabetes Association of America. I also knew that loosing weight would also help tremendously with my blood sugar. I knew weight loss was essential. So I looked into and tried every single diet out there, the biggest looser, weight watchers, high protein, low fat, counting calories, carbs and fats. AM PM Fat loss program and I even went to a medical doctor for weight loss, gave me pills, shots and B12. None of those programs worked for me until I decided to carefully watch what I ate, exercised 3/4 times a week and checked my blood sugar before and after every meal to see how each food reacted in my body. Finally after many years I reached a good eating program that I was able to stop taking all my medication. I was eating very simply. Lots of Vegetables, Salad, 3 to 4 oz protein. The only grains I ate were Millet and Quinoa. Some beans, Good Fat olive oil, avocado, nuts. Special Bread from Julian Bakery “Mana Bread”. I did really well on this diet,I had lost a bunch of weight but I hit a plateau and I just was not losing even though I was eating perfectly and exercising. I just wanted to die, and I did shed a lot of tears. I couldn’t understand why my body was not responding. My husband Jack looked fabulous, was thin and doing exactly what I was even in larger amounts. Again I thought, well Sequoia you are just going to have to accept your body just the way it is…………. But I knew in my heart there was a way for me!

Well, Creator had a plan for me. I just love how he works in such mysterious ways. Before I knew it I was enrolled in a Raw Foods Chef program at the renowned “Living Light Culinary Institute” in Fort Bragg, California. A month prior I never imagined I would be a Chef, let alone a Raw Foods Chef. Although I have always loved to cook. I love to eat good food. I can not stick with anything if it does not taste good. Well, lo and behold I went to Ft. Bragg leaving my life behind to start this journey! Oh my god, it has been an answer to my prayers. My blood sugar is completely normal, and still without any medications.

I have learned to make the most wonderfully raw food. I never thought I would be eating lasagna, pizza,pasta,enchiladas, pies, cakes, soups, salads, quiche and so much more. I still can not believe what I am eating. I can literally feel the energy of the food. You feel healthy and full of energy. You will not be as tired because your body won’t have to use all your energy to digest the food you eat.

When we think of raw foods as I said before. We think of carrots, celery. The actual meaning of Raw means in its natural state. So the food we are putting into our bodies when raw means they are still alive, filled with enzymes and nutrients. This food supports every aspect of our physical body.

Sometimes it is really scary to make changes to ones habits I know!. So if you have a feeling that eating this way would be good for you. Good for your physical health, mental health and spiritual health. Start off in baby steps.

If you just do a few simple things like:

Have a smoothie in the morning
Have a green drink
Have a green salad before each meal

Just by doing those simple things you will be eating 50% RAW. I am so passionate about “Wonderfully Raw” foods that I can not wait to share what I have learned with you.

I am now a graduate of the “Living Light Culinary Institute Gourmet Chef/Teachers Program” and Jack is a certified teacher of ” The Science of Raw Foods” we will be offering a series of talks and un-cooking classes at Three Trees Retreat in Watsonville, CA.

I am also including a link from her site to find out more about this family run company
http://mycocoroons.com/pages/about-us

Mini Coco-Roons Flavors: Vanilla Maple, Brownie and Apple Pie

Mini Coco-Roons
Flavors: Vanilla Maple, Brownie and Apple Pie

Coco-Roons Flavors: Lemon Pie, Vanilla Maple and Brownie

Coco-Roons
Flavors: Lemon Pie, Vanilla Maple and Brownie

Coco-Roons Flavors: Apple Pie, Cacao Nib and Almond & Strawberry "PB & J"

Coco-Roons
Flavors: Apple Pie, Cacao Nib and Almond & Strawberry “PB & J”

Snip Chips- Parsnip-Coconut Snack Mix Flavors: Dill Pickle, Chipotle Cilantro and Cheezy  Herb Truffle

Snip Chips – Parsnip-Coconut Snack Mix
Flavors: Dill Pickle, Chipotle Cilantro and Cheezy Herb Truffle

Brussel Bytes- Brussels-Coconut Snack Mix Flavors: Chili Pumpkin Seed Crunch and Tamarind Apple Crunch

Brussel Bytes – Brussels-Coconut Snack Mix
Flavors: Chili Pumpkin Seed Crunch and Tamarind Apple Crunch

Back of package  Apple Pie Coco-Roons

Back of package
Apple Pie Coco-Roons

Back of package Organic Brussel Bytes - Tamarind Apple Flavor

Back of package
Organic Brussel Bytes – Tamarind Apple Flavor

Back of package  Snip Chips - Chipotle Lime Cilantro Flavor

Back of package
Snip Chips – Chipotle Lime Cilantro Flavor

Flyer with more info about Snip Chips and Brussel Bytes

Flyer with more info about Snip Chips and Brussel Bytes

Flyer with more information about Coco-Roons

Flyer with more information about Coco-Roons

Also check out my youtube channel for a video review of all their products: http://www.youtube.com/TheRawsomeVeganGal

To find out more about all the great products from Wonderfully Raw go to:

http://www.wonderfullyrawgourmet.com
http://www.mycocoroons.com
http://www.mysnipchips.com
http://www.mybrusselbytes.com

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Company/Product Review: Dastony – 100% Organic, Raw, Stone Ground Nut and Seed Butters

Dastony – 100% Organic, Raw & Stone Ground Nut and Seed Butters in business since 2011

Here is what Anna, Windy City Organics Sales and Brand Outreach, emailed me about the company:
About 3 years ago we launched Dastony….
4 years ago we developed a healthy, pure, raw version of Nutella and coined it Rawtella….we used stone grinders to get this ultra silky consistency. The owner fell in love with the stone grinding process and decided to launch a bunch of nut butters as well using super high quality ingredients. We started with just almond, cashew, coconut and sesame and have just kept adding more and more. We now have 11 flavors all together including the 4 sprouted varieties.

Here is some information from their website:

About Dastony

The inspiration for Dastony came from a desire to share what we feel is the healthiest and by the far the smoothest nut and seed butters. We are a family owned company with uncompromising standards of purity, taste, and integrity. Our values are in place due to our deep understanding of the benefits that can be achieved through quality ingredients, and when it comes to taste, well, we work tirelessly in this respect. Our integrity is unwavering and our loyal customers and fans would testify to this. To read more go to: http://dastony.com/about-dastony.html

Why Stone Ground?
We’ve all witnessed the browning of an apple. When the fruit is cut or bruised browning occurs because living cells are damaged and begin to oxidize. Now imagine the process used during the production of a typical nut butter – mastication with heavy duty metal blades. This process literally shreds, tears and cuts repeatedly until the desired texture is achieved. Any living enzymes, viable nutrients, and ‘life’ would certainly dwindle.

RAW and LIVING are principles we at Dastony are truly passionate about. Like with anything living, the energy and vital compounds found in nuts and seeds are very delicate. Our method of stone grinding is the best way to preserve and cherish this life force. Large, flawless granite wheels slowly turn ‘grinding’ the food until it is silky smooth. Temperatures well below 118 degrees are continuously maintained – another gauge for the preservation of raw and living.

From their Facebook Page:
Curious what the stone grinding process looks like? Check out the premier of our behind the scenes video to see those grinders in action! http://youtu.be/yQP8276I1Lc

My Review:

I have found some great products to review, simply from doing a search on Amazon. Before I decide if I even will consider the product, I read the reviews on Amazon and then search on the company site to see that it complies with my own personal high standards for myself, as well as for the public who are reading my posts and also watching my videos. Instead of buying the product, I contacted the company to see if they are willing to send me product(s) for an unbiased review. I want to thank Anna for her willingness to send me a few of the great nut and seed butters that Dastony sells.

I was so anxious to try out the butters and could not wait till the package arrived at my door. It was well worth the wait and then some. I do not think that I will ever want to eat any other nut or seed butters ever again! Once you taste the best artisan-made products (regardless of the cost), it is very difficult to eat another brand. It is the same as if you are a farmer or work at a farmers market (I do work for an organic produce farmer who has the highest quality, tastiest and unique greens and other produce – if you are interested in knowing more about him and if you live in San Diego, you can buy his produce at various markets or through his CSA – go to http://www.sagemountainfarm.com) and eat the freshest food, it is not the same to “buy” your produce, even at a health food store. Dastony uses an “old world” method for processing and offer unique products to their customers. It is worth every penny you will spend to buy them! I was also happy to find out from Anna that the facility handles only their raw tree nuts and seeds and does not process soy or dairy. Also the nuts and seeds are truly raw, as they source out the best products, especially now that raw almonds that are grown in USA are pasteurized.

I received two of their 8 oz butters: Sprouted Pumpkin Seed and Sprouted Sunflower Seed Butter (plastic containers are never used, all of the products come in glass jars). They also offer Sprouted Almond and Sprouted Sesame Seed Butter (Tahini). The difference with sprouted nuts and seeds, it that the germination allows it to be digested more easily in your body and it is considered “living food.” In order to do this, the seeds/nuts are first soaked, at least overnight and they allowed to germinate or even begin to sprout, where you see a “shoot” coming out of one end of the seed/nut. Afterwards, the seeds/nuts are dehydrated at low temperature below 118 degrees to remain raw and enzyme-rich.

The process that Dastony uses to make the butters is explained above and called “stone-ground” and was used in ancient times to make olive oil. It creates the smoothest, creamiest nut and seed butters I have ever tasted. The flavor is like nothing I have ever had before and I am sure if I did a side-by-side taste test with other companies who make nut and seed butters, they would not “hold a candle” to these products! Of course, not many are using this “old world” process as they do not want to take the time or make the effort to offer the best product to the public. They simply want the “machine” to crank out more products, so they can make more money and then, as the expression goes, “you get what you pay for.” This holds true, for sure with Dastony! The prices they charge for what you get is really “cheap” relative to the quality. I ask, please, Dastony, do not mark up the price because I think it is too low, because you still want it to be relatively affordable to the consumers and I do not want to get negative comments from people who say it is my fault that the price went up.

The other products I received (not sprouted) are a 1 oz sample jar of: Almond Butter, Cashew Butter and Coconut Butter. The cashew and coconut butters are also certified kosher by Earth Kosher. They do not sell this size to the public, but are offered in 8 and 16 oz sizes. Besides the varieties I sampled, they also offer:
Brazil Nut, Hempseed, Sesame Seed (Tahini) and Hazelnut Butters. Each butter has its own unique flavor profile, and the 3 mentioned here, to me, have a sweeter flavor and I really enjoy using them to spread on a cracker, add to a soup, smoothie, to make a nut/seed milk, sauce, dressing, dessert, etc. They are such versatile products. The possibilities are endless and is as infinite as the mind can think of! I also like to dip my yummy tri-color carrots or celery into the nut/seed butters. Sone like to split a date in half and spread some butters in there. Please note that double-dipping is not recommended and here is why: Our mouths are the dirtiest places around and if the mix of germs and bacteria present in our mouth get into a jar it can cause mold and rot. This holds true with any food in your fridge!

I know that in the future, I will be purchasing my nut and seed butters from Dastony and enjoying the love and care that goes into each of their products.

Disclaimer: I was not sponsored to write this, but I did receive a sample of the product(s). These are strictly my opinions. I only review products that I, myself would use and purchase.

I am also including some photos from the product packaging that tells you more about the product and the benefits mentioned.

Check out my video review, as well where I taste these great products: http://www.youtube.com/TheRawsomeVeganGal

To find out more about this company, their products and where to purchase, go to: http://www.dastony.com

Dastony Nut and Seed Butters -100% Raw, Organic and Stone Ground

Dastony Nut and Seed Butters -100% Raw, Organic and Stone Ground

Dastony Seed and Nuts Butters - 100% Raw, Organic & Stoneground

Dastony Seed and Nuts Butters – 100% Raw, Organic & Stoneground

More detailed information on the jar of Pumpkin Seed Butter about the process of stone-grinding

More detailed information on the jar of Pumpkin Seed Butter about the process of stone-grinding

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