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‘Crazy Sexy’ toxin avenger: Inspiring advocate for healthy living visits JH
JACKSON HOLE, WYO - Cancer survivor-thriver Kris Carr refers to the period before her diagnosis as “BC,” as in Before Cancer. She was living in New York City working as an actress and enjoying moderate success, landing plenty of TV commercial work. She probably thought she was happy but she wasn’t. Not really.
Carr was depressed, lost and systematically abusing her body. To borrow her own pet phrase, a “super disco” of toxins had their way with Carr’s body until she got the good news on Valentine’s Day in 2003. She had cancer. It was incurable. That was when she began living, Carr says.
“It was not something you could just cut out with surgery,” Carr said. “You’ve got to live with terminal illness.”
Carr started her life that February, 10 years ago. Determined to beat the C, the 42-year-old author of The New York Times bestsellers Crazy Sexy Diet and Crazy Sexy Kitchen turned 100 percent vegan overnight and never looked back. She juices now, religiously, and consumes what she calls low residence food – nutrition that doesn’t use a lot of energy to digest but provides energy.
Her plant-based diet helps balance her body toward an alkaline state rather than an acidic one, and promotes an anti-inflammatory condition. She believes in the China Study diet and epigenetics. Carr refuses to become a slave to the renegade cells that conspire against a healthy body through diseased mitosis.
Carr has taken control of her gene expression and she is more than happy to share the secret to her post-cancer chrysalis. She has made it her life’s calling. The life she began living the day they told her she had a disease that would kill her.
Planet JH: You frequently mention thoughts, as well as food, as being something that can harm or heal if allowed inside your body. Many cancer survivors and practitioners acknowledge a positive outlook can be a major factor in cancer treatment and recovery. What were your “good thoughts” and, most importantly, in an admitted state of depression and lost feelings, from where did you summon them?
Kris Carr: I live with cancer every day so my good thoughts are just part of what I experience. I think the most important thing to understand is that we have a range of emotions. All emotions are valid and need to be expressed. It’s impossible to just be positive. We can’t amputate what’s really going on by just slapping a smile on our faces. But it’s also not healthy to just dwell in our pain and fear. I can tell you from experience that the more honest I am about my feelings, and the more I deal with them with love and tenderness, the easier it is to be positive. It’s like giving yourself a mental spring-cleaning, it might get dusty and dirtier at first, but over time your house shines bright. When we learn to befriend ourselves, it’s a lot easier to be kind and compassionate. From that space, positivity shines.
PJH: You’ve admitted being addicted to “sugar, drugs, and bad men.” Which was hardest to kick?
KC: Sugar! Well, bad men may be a close runner up.
PJH: You are an animal lover. You have a rescue dog. Anything to the concept that dogs or pets in general can be therapeutic for cancer patients or really anyone?
KC: Of course. The unconditional love we receive from pets warms our hearts, gives us companionship and ultimately helps to lower our stress level. We’ve been sponsoring, adopting and rescuing animals for years. Every week we send out a newsletter at KrisCarr.com, loaded with inspiration, recipes, how-to advice and three adoptable animals. I love helping others and that help extends beyond human animals, to all beings.
PJH: Your transformation was drastic – 100 percent vegan overnight. Is that realistic for people who may not be facing a terminal illness? Like you’ve said, there’s not enough message for people at “Stage 0.” How do you reach the segment of your followers and potential fans that are not facing a life-threatening disease but could be a ticking time bomb with feelings of low-esteem and constant stress?
KC: I actually don’t recommend that people make the drastic switch that I made. You’re right, it’s not realistic. It’s definitely better to lean into change. This approach helps us stick to new routines. Ultimately, I suggest that we all learn where our food comes from, reduce what doesn’t serve us and what brings our energy and immunity down, while increasing what helps our bodies, our longevity and our vitality.
What’s that you say? Vegetables. Green juices, healthy smoothies, etc. My latest book, Crazy Sexy Kitchen, has over 150 plant-passionate recipes. If folks ate more plants on a daily basis, they’d see huge improvements in their health. It doesn’t have to be all or nothing. And it can be really delicious.
PJH: Have ever been to Jackson Hole?
KC: No, but my husband and I came to Jackson Hole a few days early because I’ve always wanted to explore your slice of heaven. Jackson Hole has been on my wish list for years. I feel very lucky to have been invited here and can’t wait to meet folks.
A decade after she told her story of a rare and incurable cancer diagnosis in the documentary Crazy Sexy Cancer, Kris Carr continues to inspire millions of cancer patients and people just looking to take control of their lives through a better diet and healthier outlook. The best-selling author of the Crazy Sexy series will speak at 7 p.m., Saturday, October 19, at Center for the Arts. Tickets are $20. 307-733-4900.