I’m Done With Labels

Omnivore. Vegetarian. Pescatarian. Raw. Vegan. Flexitarian.


I’m so OVER labels.


Today marks Day 10 of a 10-Day cleanse for me. Over the holidays I did a little more social eating than usual. I nibbled on food when I wasn’t really hungry just because I was in social gatherings where food was present. So to kick off the year, I wanted to reset my body and start the year clean and strong.


The 1st three days of the cleanse I consumed juices and smoothies exclusively and days 4-10 raw foods only. The last 7 days haven’t been drastically different than the way I normally eat. I usually have a green smoothie for breakfast and eat raw for lunch so at least half my day I generally consume raw foods. Does this mean I espouse a raw food diet for everyone? NO.


What I advocate and encourage for myself, my family and for everyone is to rethink your plate. Somewhere along the line we’ve been taught to think that our plate should look like a Swanson TV dinner tray; you know the one, divided into sections, the largest section with a big hunk of meat, a medium sized portion of starch and a small side of vegetables (and perhaps a dessert).

swanson tv dinner

Well even the government is acknowledging the old model isn’t working for the Western diet. They’ve done away with the old food pyramid and have introduced Choose My Plate. And finally, the vegetable portion is the largest section on the plate.

choose my plate

And that’s my urge to you. Increase your consumption of whole food plant-based items. Eat food that closely resembles what it looked like when it grew. Eating more fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, legumes and grains and less processed, refined, packaged dead foods. Eating foods that still have life in them will contribute to giving life to your blood, muscles, and organs. You are a finely crafted machine and you need high-octane fuel to run on.

colorful salad

Would you put regular gas in your Porsche Carerra? NO! That high performance engine needs premium fuel and so do you. When you put inferior gas in a high performance car you can experience knocking. And that’s also what happens to the body when you put inferior, processed, highly refined foods in it. Your body ‘knocks’ suffering from disease, inflammation, aches, pains, irregularity in elimination, and more.


God wants you to eat of the good of the earth. From the earth, He provides you with what your body needs.


Then God said, “I give you every seed-bearing plant on the face of the whole earth and every tree that has fruit with seed in it. They will be yours for food.” Genesis 1:29

kale salad chickpeas

I pray you are INSPIRED to eat the bounty of the good of the earth. I encourage you to eat raw food at least once a day. When we heat our food to high temperatures we begin to kill essential vitamins, minerals and enzymes (though there are a few foods that benefit from heating).


I’m done with labels. When someone asks, “Are you a vegan?” I simply answer I eat mostly a plant based diet. Every now and again I do enjoy a slice of pizza and I’m not talking about a pizza with vegan Daiya cheese either. I’m talking about a slice of heavy, ooey gooey hot oily cheesy goodness.


I don’t care what you call yourself, just eat more of what’s good for you and less of what your body can’t recognize. When we consume highly processed and highly refined foods, our bodies don’t readily recognize them and as a result the body can react with inflammation, allergies, bloating and the like.


So what will you do today to honor your temple? There are plenty of things I like that do not honor my temple. I love Jax Cheese Curls, Macaroni and Cheese (my third favorite food behind popcorn and kale salad), Pizza and Ice Cream. But I have to make a decision to say YES to my health and NO to these items. As a rare treat I may indulge in one of those items.

2013-10-13 13.43.05

So here’s a start. Choose something on the Eat This to consume and something from the NOT THIS to get rid of. Or take one item that you normally eat and find out how you can prepare it in a different way that is lower in fat, lower in calories and retains more of the nutrients. One. Small. Step. At. A. Time.


Eat This

Apple w/ Almond Butter

Green Beans sautéed with fresh garlic

Baked Fish

Homemade salad dressings and sauces

Brown Rice, Quinoa

Maple syrup, Honey, Dates

Air Popped Organic Popcorn


Not This

Candy Bar

Green Beans cooked to their death in chicken broth

Fried Fish

Bottled salad dressings & sauces

White Rice

White Sugar

Potato Chips


Each moment of the day, we are presented with choice. I urge you to choose well.


I call heaven and earth as witnesses today against you, that I have set before you life and death, blessing and cursing; therefore choose life, that both you and your descendants may live. Deuteronomy 30:19


As always, it is my prayer that you’ve been Inspired to Live Fully!

6 replies
  1. Celeste Owens
    Celeste Owens says:

    Well stated! Labels should provide guidance not enslave us to one plan. God has a tailored-made diet for each of us based on our own physiological needs. If we listen to the spirit we can’t go wrong.

  2. Candace
    Candace says:

    Oh how I remember those TV dinners, Tyra! I love how you used them to compare how a plate should actually look. Congrats on the new year cleanse. My body and mind are so amazing after a cleanse. It never ceases to amaze me how much better my severe mood issues are after some time away from processed foods, sugar, and gluten. I have such a hard time staying away from it all though and find myself diving right back into bad choices. Your eat this, not this is a fantastic first step for people. Almond butter and apples are one of my favorite snacks, and I desperately need to get rid of white sugar! I’ll start there :).


Trackbacks & Pingbacks

  1. […] Vegan cookbooks. While I do not ascribe to a particular dietary title (you can read more on that HERE), we do eat 85% plant-based foods in my […]

  2. […] the plate as large section of meat, medium sized portion of starch and small portion of vegetables (read more on that here). So lately I’ve been swapping out my pasta with zucchini noodles, cutting the amount of rice […]

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