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Rapha Valley: Your Food is Your Best Medicine @NegrosTourism

By Posted on 5 m read

You are what you eat.

A very simple but striking statement that I learned during the visit in Rapha Valley.

After more than one hour of travel from Bacolod City to the highlands of  Don Salvador Benedicto in Negros Occidental, what better way to be greeted of a place than with a relaxing frozen towel soaked in citronella, refreshing carrot-langka juice, plus black rice puto dipped in bloodless/meatless dinuguan dipped in a dressing made of honey, organic cashew herb cheese , rosemary, seasoned with himalayan rock salt.

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Truly an organic food-ish way of greeting any guest in Rapha Valley. This is how 

Dr. Albert Jo and his staff welcomed us in his organic haven.

Dr. Jo is an advocate of natural healing thru consumption of organic food. He believes in dogma that Hippocrates once said, “Let food be your medicine…and take it FRESH, he adds.

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Often than not, people blame so many things for their health. When in fact, most of the time, our lifestyle dictates most our physical well-being.


So, while I was eating my sumptuous and refreshing merienda, I was both “disoriented” and “re-oriented” on the reality of the kind of food I eat on a daily basis.

In short, I find myself off-course healthy living with the astonishing revelations from Dr. Jo. When in fact, I have been just storing “JUNK” inside of me since I was a kid. From the meat I eat, snacks, restaurant, and the rest, I am not really sure now what to eat.

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Dr. Jo addressed that 40 percent of the meat we eat now is composed of fats. Those fats store the toxins in the body of animals. And with the implementation of livestock raisers now wherein most are just chemically induced, artificial feeds, excess fattening diet and other genetically-modified feeds, what can you expect to eat? Mostly, toxins. Those toxins are then stored in your body fats.

Plus, the fact that most of the processed meat that we consume, according to Dr. Albert, are made of ground meat, fats, entrails and every thing you can imagine inside. Just seasoned with artificial ingredients to taste. This is shortcut for food companies to produce more “food” for the consumers in less time and cost.

Sadly, we, all, “enjoyed” our fair share of this “artificial” food chain. From the juicy beef of fast-food burgers we ate while hot, to the ice cream we lavishly enjoyed, to the crispy, crunchy corn-based snacks we munched while watching, up to the ice cold soda we drank.

All of those “foods” are made with artificial flavorings, genetically modified raw materials (which are, according to Dr. Albert, overflow of supply of genetically modified potato and corn), fats with toxins, and other tasty, yet unhealthy components for our body.

A Healthy Way Out – Rapha Valley Way

I may have been shocked in a lot of the “revelations” Dr. Albert lectured, it is not as hopeless or depressing that you might think (though honestly, I felt like being pushed to the wall every time he points out a food that I eat, as if I am on a dead end. hahaha!), detoxification is first step in eliminating the toxins in the body.

Impossible? Possible!

Dr. Albert Jo admitted that he used to be a “carnivore,” eating all the meat that his eyes craved for. For years he was in a very unhealthy diet. Thus, now, he says, he continually detoxifies himself, for he knows that he has stored up so much toxins in his body.

Next, is to be determined to change the eating preference. Like in his case, he is a pescovegetarian, one who eats vegetables with select fishes.

Based on Dr. Jo’s findings, NOT ALL fishes and seafoods are good for the body. He prefers fishes with scales. Other sea creatures are literally scavengers, and just of course gets the trash of the water. So why eat them?


We are often not looking, even peeking, on the food labels of how our food is processed or where it comes from. It is our loss.

Now, if you are really interested in living a healthy lifestyle, he advises to get organic produce – either from a certified organic producer/retailer, or better yet, produce your own.

In the 8,000 green fields of Rapha Valley, I saw a lot of variety of veggies, herbs, fruits, trees and ornamental plants and flowers.

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Dr. Jo explains that knowing the plants, its properties and effects on our bodies can make a difference. The plants  have several natural healing and therapeutic properties to aid humans. Whether they are for external use or for eating, all of which play a big part in a healthier living. The only question is, do you know about it?

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Eating what kind of food is just part of eating right, the other part of it is the manner of how you eat the right food.

Digestion is an important process in living healthy. Dr. Jo mentioned the importance of taking time to chew the food you eat. Quick eating spoils the whole process of digestion.


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Eating at the right pace also lets your brain process better if you are really full or not.

Take 3-4 hours of interval before eating the next meal. Take fruits and veggies as snacks.

Use the proper proportion of food intake.


  1. Prefer darker rice over white rice (brown, red, black). Black being the healthiest among the varieties.
  2. Prefer kamote over any rice. A regular-sized boiled unskinned kamote has 14 percent protein and 7% good fats. Kamote or sweet potato is far superior than rice. Kamote has Vitamins A, B-6, C, D, K, Riboflavin and minerals. It contains 5 times more fiber and 7 times more folate than rice. It also has antioxidants that can flush out free radicals in the body.
  3. 1/8 cup of malunggay (fresh, blended) has nutritional equivalent of calcium of 4cups of milk = vit. c of 7 oranges = potassium of 3 bananas = vit. a of 4 carrots
  4. Green leafy vegetables to alkalinize the body
  5. Lose 3-5 lbs. in three (3) days naturally, by drinking food replacement / detox drink:
  • 1L of water + 20 pcs calamansi + 1/8 teaspoon of cayenne pepper + 2tbsp. black strap molasses
  • Each meal to be substituted with 1L of the detox / food supplement drink during three (3) days of fasting
  • Do this four times a year for starters.

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More photos of Rapha Valley experience below
[slickr-flickr type=”gallery” tag=”rapha valley”]

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