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Kris Carr discusses her Crazy Sexy lifestyle and more

You might know Kris Carr from the hit TLC documentary Crazy Sexy Cancer; when she was diagnosed with epithelioid hemangioendothelioma -- an extremely rare, and supposedly incurable, form of cancer -- she transformed her life through diet and healthy living. She'll be signing Crazy Sexy Diet, which she describes as the crazy sexy lifestyle "bible," tonight at the Tattered Cover, 2526 East Colfax Avenue, at 7:30 p.m.

We recently caught up with Carr to talk about the new book, integrative modes of treatment and how she wants her readers to view themselves:

Westword: Tell us about your journey through this topic.

Kris Carr: So the journey started in 2003 on Valentine's Day, when I was diagnosed with a very rare cancer with no cure. Because I couldn't do treatment options, I went about creating and investigating and experimenting and finding the best diet and lifestyle out there. I talk about it a lot in Crazy Sexy Cancer and my book of the same title, but really, Crazy Sexy Diet is the bible. It's an enormous resource filled with everything I've learned for people who are interested in getting well and staying well. We have an outstanding posse of contributors and doctors and wonderful smart people. I think the genesis started with sickness, and now it's turning into kind of a wellness revolution that I'm happily penning from my home in New York.

And that's when you started looking into alternative wellness modalities?

I prefer to call them "integrative," because "alternative" makes it seem so radical. I knew that I had to take charge of what I was eating, drinking and thinking, and what I put in my mouth has to be assimilated or eliminated. So it was a great place for me to start: Upgrade the diet first, give myself more energy, strengthen my immune sytem, rev my metabolism and really put myself on the fast track for good health. It was shocking to me what I learned; it was shocking that I didn't learn it younger in school, and there was so much confusion out there when I first attempted to teach myself these things. It was a terrifying world to navigate, really, but it was my only option. So I just put on my high heels and started kicking down doors and devouring everything I could.

And what were the conclusions you came to?

The Crazy Sexy diet and lifestyle -- and it's important to understand that it's a lifestyle -- is primarily anti-inflammatory. It focuses on plant foods and increasing the amount of alkaline foods we consume and decreasing acidic foods and foods that are part of our standard American diet. That's what the components are. I think the overall concept is that it's not just what you're eating, it's what's eating you. I really explore lifestyle practices and stress, how we're talking to ourselves, how we're treating ourselves, and how to correct that, because if you can't change the thinking, you can't change the eating. Ultimately, I don't want people to just be healthy; I want people to be happy.

Talk about the style and design used to put the book together. It's very playful and reads almost like a magazine.

It's the same style I used in my previous book, and I think that it's important to be visually stimulating -- and certainly my tone is entertaining. I think that medicine goes down better when it's wrapped in honey and pizzazz. I want it to feel like an unbelievably cozy scrapbook, like your best friend is talking to you and you have an intimate relationship with this book, because I want you to go back to it, not just put it on your shelf. This book is your buddy. I'm also a really visual person, I learn in pictures, so if I don't understand something scientifically, I make pictures. When I didn't understand amino acids, I had to literally draw it out and tell myself a really fun story to learn about amino acids.

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Amber Taufen has been writing about people, places and things in Denver since 2005. She works as an editor, writer, and production and process guru out of her home office in the foothills.
Contact: Amber Taufen

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