By Sam Skopp
Santa Monica’s public libraries recently held a “how to” festival, with events teaching everything from how to read faster to how to achieve financial success for free to community members.
At Santa Monica’s Montana Branch Library, Colon Hydrotherapist Valerie Lernihan held a workshop and Q&A on how to prepare raw and living foods and maintain a healthy raw food diet.
Lernihan began by demonstrating firsthand how to make almond milk out of just sprouted almonds and water, while fielding questions throughout from a very enthusiastic audience. Once the almond milk was done, everyone in attendance was given a taste of it.
Some audience members were interested in how to approach a raw foods diet without prior experience. For example, one participant asked about the rigidity of a raw food diet.
“I’m not 100 percent raw right now, but I’m going on a cleanse soon,” said Lernihan. Depending on the individual, anything from a strictly raw diet to a cleanse once or twice a year may be most beneficial, she explained.
Other participants were experienced raw food adherents looking for tips on how to improve their existing diet. Lernihan stressed that diets are inherently personal, and that while she can’t consume corn or dairy, another individual’s dietary needs will be entirely different and personal to them.
Lernihan also clarified that the term “living food” was technically more accurate than the popular nomenclature “raw food,” due to the diet she champions recommending that all nuts and beans to be soaked and sprouted before consumption.
Her workshop also included demonstrations on how to make pumpkin seed milk, which she recommended as a substitute for half and half, as well as chia seed pudding.
For more information on upcoming Santa Monica Library events, visit smpl.org.