HI, I’M MARINA.

WELCOME TO SOUL IN THE RAW.

I am a whole food, plant based educator and recipe developer, and have been plant based for over 9 years. I create easy and delicious vegan recipes and share the health benefits of a plant-based diet, focusing on evidence-based nutrition information.

On Soul in the Raw you will find recipes, nutrition tips, tutorials, and inspiration to lead a whole food, plant based lifestyle. Soul in the Raw is about abundance rather than deprivation, quick and easy recipes, and loving yourself through creating food that makes you feel amazing.

MY JOURNEY TO WHOLE FOOD PLANT BASED

 After 8 years of being extremely sick with Interstitial Cystitis (IC is a bladder condition that feels like a UTI, with constant urination and severe, excruciating pain) and trying everything the doctors recommended with no results, my beautiful young mother decided to take her health into her own hands. She did a 28-day water fast (drinking water only, no food, and laying in bed). This made all of the pain go away (note: I do not recommend unsupervised water fasting to anyone. Contact TrueNorth Health Center for support). She then decided to start eating raw vegan, which further helped her heal, and even allowed the scarring on her bladder to subside. She went from never leaving the house because of constant urination, to living a normal life, hiking, and enjoying an amazing bond with me!

 This inspired me so much, that my partner and I decided to start transitioning to a raw vegan lifestyle too. It was gradual. I went from a junk foodie to a raw foodie, and absolutely loved it. I lived in Jerusalem back then – a city where eating primarily raw food sounds absolutely ridiculous to most people. At that time, I was also very busy: I worked 3 jobs & was a full time Master’s student. Throughout this transformation, I watched every video and read every available book about food and health, and learned to make the most delicious meals. I also became a certified health coach through BodyMind Institute.

I started Soul in the Raw in April 2013. At first, I just wanted to share my raw vegan journey with the world, because of all the amazing changes I personally experienced, the main one being discovering a strong connection with my body and learning to love myself again after having a very painful past with sexual assault and resulting trauma.

When I moved from Jerusalem to San Diego, I started teaching raw food classes all over the city, and educating others about plant based living. I also got in touch with the local vegan community, and started learning about other types of vegan eating & living.

It was then that my PMS and period cramps got to a whole new level of pain. I was not able to survive the first day of my period without taking 10 painkillers! And I also started to feel like, after 4 years of trying to eat entirely raw vegan, it wasn’t working for me. It just wasn’t sustainable in my lifestyle, and I kept craving cooked foods.

The combination of wanting to heal my painful cramps and becoming unsatisfied with the raw vegan lifestyle led me to discover the incredible Dr. Michael Greger and his free, information packed and evidence-based website (which I constantly refer others to), nutritionfacts.

It was then that I transitioned to whole food, plant based living and have been loving it ever since! My period cramps are completely gone, and I don’t experience any food cravings: just pure joy and excitement about food!

Weight Loss on a Plant Based Diet: Your Step by Step Guide | Soul in the Raw

10 RANDOM FACTS ABOUT ME:

  1. I love animals, and have a cat, Lola, who is my baby, but also totally acts like my owner (cat parents, you know what I mean right?) She’s not actually this tiny anymore, but how cute right???
  2. I am often told I am funny, and also have a strong spiritual side through which I learn how to love myself, and connect with all living beings
  3. I am an avid hiker, love yoga, and love to move my body! But when I was a kid, all I wanted to do was have deep conversations on the couch with other kids. Now, I do both
  4. I have an incredible life partner, Tomer, who is also my best friend and the love of my life. Oh, and he helps develop my website, too. We have been together for 10 years
  5. I was born in Ukraine, and spent my life moving back and forth between San Diego and Israel. You will see lots of Middle Eastern inspiration in my food
  6. I am a total nerd. I loved studying! But I also know how to turn very scientific information into fun, readable articles for you all to enjoy
  7. I studied Political Science, and worked in sexual assault prevention, and as a dialogue facilitator in conflict transformation
  8. I am an only child and only grandchild on both sides. Very small family, lots of attention!
  9. I am also a transformational life coach for empaths who want to feel more empowered and calm. You can see more of that here: https://www.instagram.com/marina.y.t/
  10. I’ve had a difficult past with immigration, sexual and emotional abuse, PTST, and attempted suicides. I am so proud of the life I have created after these events