I am beyond excited to have not one, but two of my ALL TIME FAVORITE ladies, graciously bless us with their presence on our blog. I am pleased to introduce you to Chef AJ and Julieanna Hever, also known as”The Chef and The Dietitian“. Both of these fantastic human beings have generously offered to giveaway their books to a lucky winner, in celebration of my one year anniversary of living a plant-based lifestyle. How fabulous are they?
This week, we are featuring Chef AJ. Chef AJ is the author of the book, UNPROCESSED.
Chef AJ has followed a plant-based diet for over 33 years. She works as a chef and culinary instructor in Los Angeles. She is also the creator and co-producer of www.healthytasteofla.com, an annual event in Redondo Beach, California where the finest in plant based cuisine meets the best in nutritional science.
She has produced two cooking DVDs and one cookbook, and is working on a second cookbook. Chef AJ has a unique ability to create healthy foods that taste great. Whether you want to lower your cholesterol, prevent or reverse many common lifestyle diseases, lose weight or just look and feel great, Chef AJ can show you how to incorporate more fresh fruits and vegetables in your diet in ways that are easy, delicious and fun.
UNPROCESSED will show you how you can achieve optimum health, vibrant energy and your ideal weight, simply by eating real, whole foods and avoiding processed food.
- 11 Appetizers
- 11 Beverages and Smoothies
- 14 Enticing Entrees
- 12 Salads and Dressings
- 10 Savory Soups
- 16 Sensational Sides
- 21 Decadent Desserts
- 14 Truffles
All recipes are vegan, gluten-free, oil-free, salt-free and refined sugar-free.
Chef AJ shares her personal story detailing the dangerous health consequences of an unhealthy diet, and the body’s miraculous ability to recover and thrive when fed healthy, whole foods. An inspirational, fun read.
Chapter 3 in her book, I related the most to. It asks the question, “Do you really want to do this?” She states in her book: “I can hear the little voice in your head screaming “Yeah, but…” If you are what I lovingly call a YABBUT, let’s go over some of the common fears people have when embracing a new, healthier lifestyle.”
I do believe I replied with all of the following “YABBUT’S”.
- YABBUT #1 – It’s too expensive to eat this way.
- YABBUT #2 – I don’t have the time to prepare healthy food.
- YABBUT #3 – But I can’t live without my (fill in the blank).
- YABBUT #4 – But my friends and family won’t support me in this.
- YABBUT #5 – It’s too hard or I have too much stress.
By combining whole plant food, you’ll discover some fantastic dishes that you can make easily in your own kitchen. A delightful alternative to unhealthy processed foods, let Chef AJ show you how to achieve vibrant health while eating delicious food.
By the way, I am not alone in regards to living a plant-based, unprocessed lifestyle, and experiencing awesome results. Chef AJ sent me these two spectacular individuals, before and after pictures. AMAZING! (results are typical by the way, when living this healthy lifestyle).
First we have Shayda Soleymani before photo, June, 2011:
After, September, 2012:
Second, we have Rob Cohn before/after:
In addition to giving away her book UNPROCESSED, Chef AJ was nice enough to take time out of her busy schedule, to answer some questions.
PB&J: What would you like to share with those thinking about starting a plant-based diet, but are frightened or unsure if they will be able to succeed?
Chef AJ: That just because you may not be able to do everything doesn’t mean you shouldn’t do anything in the direction of optimum health. Like eating more fruits and vegetables, for example and eliminating or decreasing the amount of processed foods and animal products.
PB&J: Was there an event in your life that persuaded you to make the transition to a plant-based lifestyle?
Chef AJ: Yes. In college I was pre-vet and I had to cut the head off of a live salamander. I never ate or wore another animal after that.
PB&J: What is one of your favorite recipes from your book, Unprocessed?
PB&J: What is your response to those folks that say they could never give up their meat, dairy, or processed foods? I used to be one of those people. My response used to be, “No cheese…are you crazy?” Also, any suggestions for those that say they are not big fruit or veggie lovers?
Chef AJ: The reason they don’t love fruit is because they are addicted to sugar. Once you abstain from sugar, all sugar not just white sugar, but agave, maple syrup, brown rice syrup, barley malt, molasses and even stevia, fruit tastes amazing. Once you stop eating crap you can learn to love veggies too. When people say they could never give something up that means they are addicted to it. Smokers say they could never give up cigarettes. Alcoholics say they could never give up booze. If I told you that you would never get heart disease, cancer or diabetes if you would abstain from Okra, do you think you could do it? But when I say it’s meat, dairy, sugar or oil you can’t. It’s called A-D-D-I-C-T-I-O-N!!!
PB&J: What has been your most rewarding benefit from living this lifestyle?
Chef AJ: Seeing my students on death’s door, morbidly obese with heart disease or diabetes completely turn their health around.
PB&J: What has been your biggest kitchen mishap/blooper?
Chef AJ: My motto is “it’s not what you can make but what you can fix” so it hasn’t happened yet.
Thank you Chef AJ, your voice for compassion, and healthy whole-foods/UNPROCESSED eating is an inspiration to many, including me.
Update: Giveaway is now over
CLICK HERE TO GET YOUR COPY OF UNPROCESSED (PAPERBACK)
CLICK HERE TO GET THE KINDLE VERSION
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