I have released four recipe books so far:

The Best of the Sunny Raw Kitchen
The Best of Raw Freedom Community
Delightfully Raw and
Deliciously Raw

These feature some of the most delectable creations to have come out of my raw kitchen and will appeal to anyone interested in a healthier diet, regardless of their level of knowledge and experience. From easy one-step everyday fare to more elaborate and involved gourmet dishes and layered cakes, they offer something for everyone and every occasion. Incredibly tasty smoothies, creamy and comforting warm soups, sexy salads, delicious nut cheezes, satisfying entrees and scrumptious guilt-free desserts...

Healthy food never tasted so good!

To learn more about my recipe books, click here!

Monday, February 18, 2013

Carmella's Health Update Video - Part I

Hi there!

I've received a few emails expressing concerns about my mentioning having serious health issues in this post. It wasn't my intention to worry you or keep you out of the loop; it's just that all of my energy has naturally turned inwardly so as to best meet this new challenge.

So I guess I'm long overdue to let you guys know about what's been really going on. I suppose part of me kept hoping I'd get better and be able to just move on, but I can see now that I'll be in this healing phase for some time to come. I wish I had better news, but hey, you have to make do with the hand that Life deals you. ;-)

I thought that the best way to bring you up to date might be to do a short video. I intend to share my experience more in depth later in the hope that it will be of assistance to anyone who might suffer from similar symptoms. It has certainly been quite the roller coaster ride, endlessly searching the internet in order to identify what it is that I've been experiencing, how to go about minimizing the symptoms, and finally how to heal as naturally and holistically as possible. All the while making slight adjustments to my diet in an ongoing experiment to determine what (few) foods I'm able to tolerate.

One question that this has raised with my readers is: "If raw foods are so good for you how come you are having health problems?" First of all let me assure you that what I'm going through right now was not caused in any way by my high raw diet. In fact, I've never felt as healthy and vibrant as I have in the 12 years that I've been eating mostly raw. The health issues that are manifesting at the moment have appeared in the aftermath of doing two Liver and Gallbladder Flushes. Their exact cause isn't clear but there is no doubt in my mind that putting my body through such a drastic measure has severely taxed it and led to my present ordeal.

But 'nough said, how about I let you watch the video and find out for yourselves. It was a bit windy (in more ways than one, lol), but hopefully you can still hear what I'm saying. ;-)

On a different note, I just wanted to mention a couple of other things.

Number One:
I'm offering all of my raw recipe books at a discount right now. Because I can't eat yummy raw foods doesn't mean you guys can't either! ;-) You can find out all of the details here.

Number Two:
We have with us a couple of really cool brand new Omni blenders that are available for purchase. This is a slightly different model than the one previously advertised on my sites, as the base has a control dial rather than being operated electronically, and comes with a tall jar.

If you aren't already familiar with the Omni (you can learn more about it here), it's a wonderful alternative to similar high power machines yet it costs considerably less. It is covered by a full seven year warranty on the base/motor and one year on the jar.

We are selling this model for $280, including free shipping in the continental US.

If you're interested to order one of those or for more details you can contact me here.

A close up view of the blender base.

I'll upload another update video in a week or so to let you know how things are going.

Until then...


  1. wishing you health and an easy recovery!

  2. Hope you get better soon Carmella :)
    Happy to hear you might have found something that works for you.

    Letting go of nutritional dogma has been the greatest healing gift for me.

    Eating raw destroyed my gut and its taken years to get back to a healthy digestive track.
    It started with the master cleanse and then all raw vegan and then years of colonics and enemas and more raw. I did a couple of liver flushes too but with minimal results. By the way, one of my friends who has done quite a few says raw folks who think they are eating the best diet in the world end up with some of the biggest stones because of all the fat and sugar from nuts, avocados and too much fruit.

    I ended up with parasites, an inflamed gut, bloating and constipation.

    My healing journey meant reintroducing cooked foods, meats and more protein and staying away from large raw meals and most especially sugar. Also, look into FODMAPS online for foods that often create inflammation in the gut.

    Even the Dali Lama eats small amounts of meat for his health condition.
    I'm not saying that you must eat meat, but find your own path free of dogma :)

    Hope this helps-


  3. Carmella, so sorry to hear what you are going through! Hang in there, rest and take care. Thanks for sharing your experience. Hope you continue to heal SOON!

  4. Hi, I'm new to your sight and I'm so happy you are working your way through this so positively and caring about us in the process. What a special thing to do. I'm sending you thoughts, love and prayers for your renewed health. Thank you for sharing. May I ask what you did for a liver flush? I do a morning drink from time to time with olive oil, garlic, lemon, apple cider vinegar, ginger. Not necessarily for a flush, just liver health. Your thoughts would be appreciated. Thanks. Julie

    1. I followed Andreas Moritz's protocol which you'll be able to find on the internet. There are different elements to it but it basically consists of drinking 1/2 cup olive oil with equal part grapefruit juice. I go into my experience in greater details here:


  5. carmella - I send you deep healing to get through this challenging time for your body - listen carefully and run with whatever is necessary for you!
    big love anita

  6. Hi Carmella. I am a long time reader of your blog and have always thought what a wonderful, sweet kind spirit you are. I think you are brave and generous to share your story through your healing process. I also had a long journey with raw vegan diet.. and tried EVERYTHING under the sun, fasting, cleanses, juices etc. to no avail. as my health and quality of life seemed to plummet. I respectfully want to share as a last stitch effort I very reluctantly returned to eating animal protein experimentally and the results were nothing short of miraculous and fast. And my health is the best I have every experienced. I know that may not be an option for you and the life you choose and values you hold, and I mean no harm or disrespect...I just was worried to see you in this state and wanted to help, I am in no way suggesting this to be the answer to you. I know you know what is best for you and I am thinking of you and wish you the best as you journey back to optimal health!! Warmest Regards, peace, and good health :)

  7. Carmella, if you allow me to say so: it simply cannot be that the liverflush is the cause of your healthproblems
    I think they revealed the cause.
    That something was going on already and as I lately heard and experienced myself, all the fat and nuts in rawfood is certainly not healthy. I learned that from Victoria Boutenko
    When I heard you on the video, the first thing that came up in me is;she needs only superfoods and no veggies and stuff.
    And blended! For my feeling a deep healing is taking place, I have been in the same place many years ago and have benefitted a lot from that happening later on.
    Call on the Light and you will be fine! As that is the greatest Healer!
    With much love and reassurance! Love you! Sukhi( Netherlands)

    1. Sukhi,

      I agree that this is a multidimensional thing and that the liver flush only acted as the trigger to bring the issue to the surface. I trust that the reason that it is finally coming up now is that I'm ready to deal with it.

      And yep, I also think that my high intake of fat and nut definitely didn't help. Guess I'll have to learn how to create yummy low fat vegan raw foods once I can eat again. ;-)

  8. Dear Carmella, thank you for sharing your story with us. I really wish you all the best on your journey until radiant healht. I wonder could it be that these radical flushes also flushed out good bacterias from your body causing such food/fat intolerance. If you try to add some feremented food and/or soft rice with umeboshi plums oould be helpful. As another source of energy you could also consider sungazing.

    1. I'm thinking that a lot of things have led to depleting my intestinal flora, ending with the flushes. The fat intolerance, as I see it, is mostly due to another gallstone that has begun to travel down the ducts (again, as a result of the liver flushes). It showed up in an ultrasound I had taken and, not surprisingly, the doctor's recommendation is to have my gallbladder removed. Fat chance of that! No pun intended! ;-)

  9. Sending you infinite love and healing energy on this difficult part of your journey. I have experienced similar challenges, but no longer have IBS, and am slowly gaining back the weight I lost. There are always valuable lessons to be learned in these experiences...but it's unfortunate that suffering is usually involved as a pathway to the answers. I have no doubt that you will heal your body, and eventually be able to consumer raw food again. A giant hug to you, Jane xoxo

  10. I'm not a strong advocate of medical doctors but Carmella please have the humility to admit that you now need one! At least get a proper diagnosis as it seems you have diagnosed yourself from your own research...but serious symptoms like a 15 lb weight loss when one is already very thin, plus BLOOD IN THE STOOL need to be fully investigated. After you receive a legitimate diagnosis then you can choose to take the allopathic treatment or some alternative treatment but at least get a handle on what's really going on. This is my heartfelt advice. Much luck to you.

    1. Thanks Donna for your concern. For the moment we are in AZ and can't afford to have more tests done, but I will once we return to Canada in a few weeks. In the meantime I feel I have a pretty strong handle on what's going on, although it hasn't come out directly from a doctor. Jini Patel Thompson, the lady who's protocol I'm now following, described the symptoms that I'm experiencing very accurately in her books. She has suffered from a similar condition and after going the traditional Western medicine way, to no avail, she finally healed herself through natural methods. In addition to giving the bowels a complete rest in order to heal, it consists of eliminating the pathogens/bad bacterias in the gut and replacing these with good bacteria by taking high doses of probiotics. I have good faith that, at the very least, her method will minimize my symptoms until I'm able to go home.

  11. Hi Carmella, Wishing you fast restored health. My daughter had IBD and Chrons at the same time. She's an animal foods eater. She had about 30 NAET treatments done here in Westminster, CO. I can give you that information or you can email me. Also there are 2 labs in USA that does a stool test for parasites--very extensive and expensive tests where she found out the name of the parasite she had. She used a cleanse formula, herbs, that she found online to help her heal. She has been healed for years. Here if I can help. Wishing you the best. Thank Don is right at your side and joining in on your journey too. Carol

  12. Carmella, you are in my thoughts and prayers. Thank you for sharing your experience. It is very helpful to me, and I'm sure it will be helpful to countless others as well. Having heard your story, I'm so glad I have not done flushes, colonics, etc. I appreciate and admire your strength and courage to get real and honest and to be so vulnerable, in service to your readers. Good for you!!!!!

    I have been eating high raw for several years. I had such a youthful glow, vibrant energy and great health. However after several years of eating this way the youthful glow and vibrancy began to slip away. I finally followed my heart and recently began to re-introduce some cooked foods, including grains. I feel MUCH better.

    I will continue to eat as much whole living food as I reasonably can, including a lot of fresh sprouts in my salads. I will also continue to do some cooking, and simply eat what my body "requests". Balance is the key word for me.

    As for deep flushes, cleanses, colonics, etc. I have stayed entirely away from doing any of those kinds of procedures, and with huge gratitude to you, I will continue to avoid taking such actions.

  13. I'm praying for you. I hope you feel better soon.

  14. I suggest you read Jordan Rubin's book the Maker's Diet. He was wasting away due to Crohn's disease. He added in fermented foods, including raw dairy I think. Health and healing to you.

  15. Carmella - I wondered, as I read your liver detox blog, if you got Epsom salt poisoning. You look skeletal and I feel fear as I listen to your adherence to only natural healing. PLEASE go to a naturopath physician and get another opinion. Hugs, peace and joy to you. - Deb R. MN

  16. Infinite love and gratitude to you beautiful Carmella and may health be the result of all the love coming your way from all over the world. xxx

  17. Carmella, I've been reading for years, but don't think I've commented. I have crohns and Paul Nisons book is what got me started on raw foods. I can't say my crohns is healed. I'm actually looking into surgery (laprosccopic, no bag!). But I've tried everything and I've felt best eating mostly raw foods. I've recently eliminated beans and grains and noticed even more of a difference. I eat liquids like smoothies and juices all day and some fruit or even a raw bar then at night I have salad and cooked veggies. I feel this is the best diet for IBD. There is hope!! I struggle but nothing else I've tried has worked. Lots of love and blessings. This can be a lonely disease, I'm glad you have great support. Can't wait to hear about how great you feel again soon. Love and light.

  18. Ive been following your site for a few years now and have noticed over the last couple years how unhealthy you look.I was only on a raw food diet for a short time and even after adding some cooked food and fish and eggs was still very weak. I believe a raw diet is very cleansing and should only be done for a short time then your body need rebuilding. I think one of the quickest ways for you to rebuild your body is with bone broths. Any kind, beef, chicken etc having the bone cook for many hours released so much nutrients and is very strengthening for ill people. I know you may not want to eat any animal products but you need to do what ever you can to start rebuilding your body or you will waste away.
    I would totally cut out raw for now. Also I have been very wary about doing those liver flushes but I think it was just a co-incidence that you became ill after doing these. I urge you to cut our the raw foods and start rebuilding with eggs, fish and meat and all cooked vegetables. I have read on line of so many raw foodists that became very sick after many years on raw and feel so much better as soon as they ate meat, myself included.
    I wish for you the best of health. Char

  19. Dear Carmella,

    As a reader / lurker of your blog for a number of years,I feel moved to read of the difficult space you find yourself in.I am sorry you are going through such a rough time health wise it truly sucks. I wanted to wish you all the very best for healing and lots of self-nurture.
    Thanks for all you do for us.

    Take good care and be very gentle with yourself.

    Lots of love

    Katie xxx

  20. oh Carmy , get well sweetie, im so sorry about this.....i feel as if i know you as ive followed you for so many years. Listen to your body and rest and take care!
    xoxo Beth

  21. Carmella,

    You need to get the barley grass juice in you...also, try www.robertmorsend.com..He believes, like I do, we need lots of fruit, only vine ripened or tree ripened, otherwise they are picked unripe and are the wrong sugar levels for us.
    One thing, you could have a parasite in you, doormint for years and you released them through the cleanse, but never killed them. So, your probably full of parasites. I would phone robertmorsend.com and they have one of the best parasite formulas out there. Also, robermorse does eye readings and can tell what is going on in your body..He is a de-fox specilist for over 30 years and has healed, actually, helped thousands heal themselves through raw fruit..and herbs..

  22. i was fixing dinner while i listened to your video and my hubby came in and exclaimed at your emaciated appearance...he wanted to know if it was alright to put you on the prayer list for his friends church....with your permission of course. I wasnt going to put my personal journey on here to raw and back again to what i call intuative eating. But the book that changed my whole outlook on food was" Animal, veggtable, miracle" by barbara kingsolver. I felt the super food/ raw food lifestyle was wasteful and bad for the planet. I planted a garden, raise my own free range eggs from chickens i consider my friends, raw milk from my goats and yes even raw cheese. I eat seasonally and locally and find that my diet is still mostly veggies, more lightly cooked in the winter( all my root veggies ) and mostly raw in the summer, all my berries and lettuces and herbs and cukes tomatoes ect ect. I eat local wild trout and sometimes local grass fed beef. once or twice a month. It works very well for me. This year i will try to grow some rice. I still make my raw fruit roll ups and the occational raw dessert using sun flower seeds i grow myself. I suffered from the opposite of what you have, not being able to eliminate and having cramps and bloating immediately after eating . My doctors called it IBS and I fasted as well....then added in more cooked foods and cut out all nuts and vitamins and suppliments, then added raw dairy slowly( like 1/4 cup a day) i feel much better. my dear I hope you find what works for you and then are able to gain some weight and feel strong again! my best, Beth hugs!

    1. Thanks Beth for your sweet words of encouragement! Absolutely, tell your hubbie I can use all the help I can get right now. ;-)

  23. sending you all my love and best wishes for a speedy recovery!!! thank you for sharing and keeping us posted. we love you!!! xoxoxox

  24. p.s. i loved seeing da puss walking around in the background. she's so sweet!

  25. I hope you feel better soon. This is very worrisome. I agree with Donna, perhaps a visit to a doctor is in order. Take care. I love Arizona and it's beautiful energy, I hope it will heal you.

  26. Hi Carmella! Thank you so much for your courage in sharing your healing journey. It takes a strong and open heart to speak so clearly about what you are going through.

    I would like to suggest that you see a doctor as well, there have been some pretty amazing things happening in the field of medicine... I'm thinking here of the trend toward functional medicine which involves healing of the gut. I'll apologize for this in advance, but I'm a librarian and I can't help but dole out info... there is an institute for functional medicine, they have a physician referral database. Also, Arizona has a great Naturopathic college, it's called Southwest college of naturopathy or something like that. And thirdly, when I lived in Tucson I had a fantastic naturopathic physician that I continued to consult with even after I left the area - Allison Pritchard.

    Sending you healing love! Ann

  27. A similar intolerance to fat developed in me after 5 years or so of high fat raw vegan, which most gourmet raw food is. I've always wondered how you were able to process all the fat over the years.

    My body led me to low fat raw vegan and while it is not as effortless for me as gourmet raw, it definitely resonates with my body. Your healing crisis is such a blessing. But low fat raw vegan, if that is your path, is a much deeper level of commitment to an unfamiliar path. I offer guidance/coaching but many others do as well. I've been living it for the last 5 years and it has been...deep and interesting. The journey continues!

  28. hi Carmella from New Delhi
    thanks for sharing such difficult experience, proving ur open mind. Experience is always needed for growing up. It might be time for u to think about what u have to adjust in your life or lifestyle. Body on a subtle level is always teaching us.
    There is a machine called a VOLL MACHINE, (vibrational medecine) which is able to detect very quickly the cause of the problem. It is all about subtle energy as we know that illness is first detectable in the auric field. I am sure that u can find this voll machine in US. I can't here in India for it is very new holistic and natural way of healing body/mind/spirit. Te whole thing!
    anyhow, i am happy u have so much loving support from us, your readers for i feel u are a lovable person. Be sweet and soft with yourself. Check from naturopath as u might be confused about the real problem. and take much care. I am expecting for raw yummy recipes soon !!!! rest, rest rest and God, Indians or whomever bless u.

  29. Hello, another post of me as this morni9ng I woke up and thinking of you I clearly saw: it is the gourmet raw food, that only is OK for a very short period of time as a transition fase, and need to be followed up by a MUCH simpler way of eating, that you are now in the proces of doing. And this is at the moment my way of getting nourished too, mostly liquid with blended greens and superfoods I feel drawn to. However everybody is different and in different stages. My feeling is that existence is showing you something that you have overlooked for a long time, that maybe has nothing to do with eating and could be a great blessing in your life.
    Maybe we need to be less involved with food and more with the love for the Spirit of Life, thats able to nourish us directly. Maybe tune into this and believe me, once I was as skinny as you. It can be easily reversed when one keeps trusting the proces. Much love and PRANA to you!
    Absorb it! Sukhi

  30. I also had severe pain and trouble starting last May, where eating any fats led a few hours later to unbearable pain, sometimes vomiting or bloody diarrhea. I never knew when it would strike and or exactly what set it off. Once I think it was 1 tsp of olive oil. I was told by hospital it was gall stones, but I refused the surgery that was offered and began my research as you have done. What has helped amazingly is Donna Gates book Body Ecology Diet. I didn't really follow the whole diet but simply added 4 oz of organic kefir every morning. She has a recipe for coconut kefir in her book as an alternative to dairy. I also took a probiotic every morning for a while. This has worked so well for me and I am so grateful.Her book is worth a read.
    Paul Nison talks about stress as playing a big role too. I know I had been under unbearable stress for a couple of years before my pain started.
    Thank you for sharing and I am so sorry you are having to deal with this. I will be praying you find the right answer for your situation and that you have a full recovery. I have enjoyed your blog and recipes for years.

  31. You are such a sweet, sweet lady and I am sending you wishes for healing and comfort. Our family has 3 members with Crohn's and I can feel for you deeply. I have tried to care/cook/prepare foods for them that are healing and I know how very difficult GI situations are.
    Peace to You!

  32. Forgot to say, our daughter had to use that same elemental food product after her Crohn's surgery. I think the resources you have found with all of your research will really help you. Paul is the first person I found, as well as Jordin, that turned me on to raw living foods. I was searching for ways to hepl the 3 in our family with CD and I actually became the raw foodist. I feed them a great deal of my food but they still eat a percentage of cooked.
    Peace and Raw Health,

  33. We're very worried about you; we're not qualified in health matters in any way, but we think you should seek professional help - try True North Health Center (http://www.healthpromoting.com/) they are a healthy alternative but have real doctors. Please look into this. ... Regards, Patty and Denny

  34. I know everyone is giving you advice, so I just thought I'd add mine...
    I am a macrobiotic counsellor who eats some raw too. I know from first hand experience about raw "side effects" too.
    You definitely need to heal your gut with warming, healing foods. Feel free to contact me if you want any further advice.
    Meantime, love and healing to you x

  35. Hi Carmella, I have also been reading your blog for years and admire your authenticity for letting us know what is going on for you. I feel thorn between feeling wooried and suggesting you look into the GAPS diet (only temporarily) and focus on bone broth as your main nutrient source and telling you to keep doing what you are doing and just trust... Be careful! We love you!

  36. Sweet Carmella, I'm saddened that you are not well. Health issues indeed cause major stress on the body and burden the mind - stay strong. Keep researching and you will come to more information about your condition and protocols to heal. It may also help when you feel up to it to do something else creative, besides creating beautiful food. I will keep you in my positive thoughts and prayers. Thank you for your honesty and authenticity. You are loved! <3 xxx

  37. So sorry you are dealing with this Carmella. I am sorry you feel so awful. It seems a lot of people will give you advice on this! If you research gallbladder issues, eggs are one of the worst things you can give it. Cooked vegan foods that are low fat are the best for gallbladders.

  38. Dearest Carmella,
    I was so sad to hear of your health problems. I sure hope you get a handle on things soon. I know how bad it feels to have everything run through you: sadly, I've been there, done that. For some odd reason, I had the opposite reaction in terms of weight problems. But, with wholesome food, great support, and lots of fresh air, I'm sure you'll be back on your feet very soon. You are in my thoughts.
    Healthy hugs,
    Sheryl-Anne xx

  39. Hi Carmi!

    I'm so sorry you're ill :( I hope that you find the right path to being healthy again. Don't worry about us, go be healthy <3


  40. Oh Carmella, Bless your heart! I wondered where you'd gone and just today finally found out about your health issues. May you heal completely and quickly! You know your body and will do what's best. Hugs! Rowan