Is The Raw Food Vegan Diet Right For You?
Many people are concerned that the raw food, vegan diet may not provide all the nutrients necessary for health. After all, it is made up of approximately 80% raw plants! Is it possible that a diet of only raw plants could keep a person healthy? Those who advocate a raw food vegan diet say that the choice of this way of eating hearkens back to our evolutionary ancestors and closest cousins in the wild, the great apes. Arguing that these majestic creatures, whose DNA makeup is so close to our own, enjoy exceptional health on a diet consisting of fruits, shoot and leaves, proponents of the raw food vegan lifestyle say that we could also enjoy exceptional health by following this simple and natural plan.
We’ve always known that fruits and vegetables provide lots of vitamins and minerals; however, not many people realize that fruits and vegetables can also be excellent sources of proteins and fats. Ample amounts of fat and protein can be had by consuming such delicious vegan staples as avocado, olives and a variety of nuts. Generally speaking you can get plenty of minerals and protein from dark green vegetables such as kale, spinach and broccoli, along with various lettuces and dark orange vegetables such as carrots, yams and so forth. Dark green leafy vegetables provide vitamin K for healthy blood clotting and strong healthy bones. The vitamin A found in carrots is essential for good eyesight and healthy skin and hair. Additionally, many vegetables such as carrots and broccoli contain substantial amounts of calcium.
So if you have been putting off trying a raw food vegan diet due to questions about nutrition, now is the time to stop worrying. A well planned and properly conceived vegan diet that includes plants that are high in fat, dark green leafy vegetables, delicious fruits, veggies, nuts and seeds can provide your recommended daily allowance (RDA) of nutrition and then some!
How Will I Know What To Eat?
It’s a good idea to purchase a dependable book and seek out assistance from well-documented, reputable online videos and websites as you embark on the raw food vegan way of life. Depending on your metabolism and your activity levels, the precise foods you will eat with the raw foods vegan diet will vary from person to person. It may take a little trial and error to determine exactly what’s right for you. For example, people who have had issues with their teeth are wise to avoid excessive intake of sweet fruits. People who have problems with dry skin or trouble keeping weight on will want to increase their intake of fatty fruits, veggies and nuts.
There is definitely a learning curve. You must do some studying and determine the best ways to choose and combine raw foods for the best results in your own situation. Of course your own preferences will play a part in these choices; however, once you’ve been on a raw food vegan diet for a while, you’ll find your tastes changing and refining. This will have the result of broadening your food choices within this extraordinarily healthful eating plan.
How Difficult Is The Transition?
When you first began with the raw food vegan way of life, you may have a lot of cravings for cooked foods. In our culture we have been taught to believe that most foods must be cooked to be safe and palatable; however, this is not really the case. Nonetheless, when you leave the world of cooked foods and move into exciting adventure of raw foods you may feel as if you’re going through drug withdrawals! People have actually reported feeling weak, sick, dizzy and disoriented when transitioning from cooked to raw foods. If you find these symptoms particularly vexing, you could begin your transition to raw food veganism with a cooked vegan diet and then transition further to a raw foods vegan diet. By-and-by, your body will adjust as you become more and more used to meeting your nutritional needs with raw foods.
Raw: The Living Food Diet
Everywhere you turn there are diets that will fit almost any lifestyle. All diets have their claims to lose weight or look younger. Unfortunately many of these diets fail in delivering their claims. Most diets are no more than money making schemes that prey on people who want to lose weight or feel better. Other diets are too rigid or too expensive for the average person. The raw food diet is neither rigid nor overly expensive. However, with all the hype of “super foods” and the number of raw food “gurus”, is raw food diet a healthy alternative? or just another diet full of hype to sell products.
What is raw food diet?
The raw food diet is an eating plan that involves fresh fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds and sprouts that are not cooked. Eating raw foods in their natural form means retaining all the vital nutrients that the food is designed for. Raw foodists eat foods that are not heated above 120-degrees. Foods that are prepared under this temperature is still considered a ” raw ” food because the nutrients and enzymes have not been disturbed. Cooking food reduces the nutritional value of the vast majority of produce. Cooking also introduces chemicals that are not healthy for the body. Most often foods that are cooked are cooked with oils, fats and preservatives that are not only unhealthy but often they can be toxic to the body.
Benefits of raw foods
The raw food diet paves the way to allow the body to heal itself. The raw food diet contains significantly less trans fats and saturated fats as the typical Standard diet. Eating a raw food diet contains less sodium and more vitamins, minerals and phytonutrients that are vital for good health and vibrancy. Although few studies have been done to examine the long term benefits of a raw food diet, vegetarians alone tend to have a reduced risk of heart attacks and are less likely to be overweight. A study shows that people who ate a mostly raw plant based diet had a reduced risk of cancer such as bladder cancer. The reason is believed to be due to the fact that raw vegetables retain all of their nutritional value. Cooking reduces the nutritional value and can add harmful non-food chemicals and toxins.
The Drawbacks of a raw food diet
Many opponents point to the lack of Vitamin B12 in a raw plant based diet. However, it has also been found that people who eat a Standard Diet are more likely to suffer from B12 deficiencies. Opponents also will point out deficiencies in iron, calcium and zinc as a reason for not adopting a raw food diet. What is not mentioned is that people that adopt a raw food diet are more apt to know exactly what their body’s needs are and can make adjustments to meet those needs. The Recommended Daily Allowances that we see are inflated numbers based on a person who eats a high cholesterol diet and smokes. There are supplements that can be taken to adjust for an individuals needs.
One way that people make up for any deficiencies is purchasing plant-based superfood powders and supplements. While these can be beneficial and do have their place, they are not absolute necessities to living a healthy raw lifestyle. Through proper research and understanding of nutritional values of different plant foods, an individual can make better “natural” choices to their diet. The “super foods” business has become quite lucrative but the claims of nutritional superiority are often backed up with proven results.
The raw food diet will help a person lose weight, have more energy and live a more vibrant life. A person does not need to be full 100% raw in order to enjoy the many health benefit’s a raw food diet offers. The majority of people on a raw food diet eat 80% raw foods. Also, when adopting a raw food diet you take nothing away without replacing it with raw food nutrition. Instead of a sausage biscuit for breakfast, have a fruit smoothie. The raw food diet is all about adding in the good stuff and providing many choices.