Raw food diet is a diet that is being followed by a lot of people around the world and it continuously gains popularity among people, especially the ones who used to be vegetarians or vegans.
For the majority of people, however, going raw sounds either awful just because they believe that such a diet consists of the same kind of foods most people eat daily (meat – dairy – eggs etc) or boring because no one can imagine that there is variety in the dishes that can be prepared.
So in order to avoid any misunderstandings that originate by either misconceptions when we say raw food diet we mean a raw vegan food diet with a huge variety.
Raw means uncooked.
It means to eat food in the form that is provided by nature without altering its form by cooking in high temperature.
The concept behind that, is that people before they become organized in communities similar to today’s ones, they were solely dependant for food on roots, nuts and fruits.
These were the only type of food available. No meat, no fish and no derivatives from those two.
All foods have enzymes which assist the process of digestion.
Enzymes exist in foods and they are produced either by our saliva, our stomach and our pancreas.
When food is cooked at a temperature higher than 118F or 47C, then all enzymes are destroyed making digestion of food impossible, unless the pancreas works extra time in order to balance the enzyme shortage.
Imagine that the pancreas’s job is to finish a job that should have started in the mouth and the stomach. If it has to be working all the time due to inadequate consumption of food enzymes, then, long-term, lies a danger.
The danger of turning our the pancreas into an unproductive organ, which will be the source of many problems.
That state of extra work load on the pancreas is added to the load that is put on it, due to common reducing pancreatic enzymes factors such as stress, caffeine, alcohol, several diseases, pregnancy and simple aging.
Having explained the merits of eating raw food instead of cooked food, the next question that pops up is…..” Isn’t it boring?”
Most people, who have heard or read about raw food diet, feel that vegetables, fruits and nuts can be a boring taste which would make their eating experience unpleasant.
A raw food diet is everything but boring as far as taste is concerned.
There are countless recipes that provide a great variety in taste both in basic meals (breakfast – lunch – dinner) as well as in desserts.
The simple addition of some condiments or the mixture of several ingredients together provide a much better taste to the outcome than if we had to eat them one at a time.
Moreover honey, tree syrups (like maple tree syrup), or coconut sugar give desserts the sweetness you seek but in a much healthier way, provided that they all are in their raw form.
If you feel like trying some recipes yourself then take a look here .
Although we do not claim that it is the magic pill to all health issues, however several people have declared that they have become free of the following issues:
-Chronic Fatigue Syndrome
-Irritable Bowel Syndrome
-Bad, mouth and body odors.
Disclaimer: If any of the above is an issue you are dealing with, the best and safest advice is to follow your doctor’s guidance.
Provided that the doctor allows such diet changes, by taking a raw turn to your diet you should start feeling the difference from the first few days, after the detoxification part is over.
It is not a medicine or a magic pill to cure everything.
Human body becomes sick when homeostasis is gone. Homeostasis depends on many factors, one of which is diet. Other factors are environment, alcohol, smoking, stress, psychological disorders etc.
Having a natural raw food diet will assist the body to recover its homeostasis, thus allowing it to heal itself.
A diet should consist of food capable to provide our bodies with all macronutrients (protein – carbohydrates – fat) and micronutrients (vitamins – minerals – enzymes)
As far micronutrients are concerned the answer is given by an article published Am J Clin Nutr May 1971 vol. 24 no. 5 562-573 concluded that there are food categories that an enrichment with some vitamins and essential trace elements may be necessary in order to meet the recommended daily allowances.
As far as macronutrients the question is almost always raised about protein. Most people would oppose to a raw food diet as they claim it does not provide adequate quantities of protein.
To answer that part of this question let’s start with the basics.
What is protein?
The answer is protein is a combination of amino acids. Amino acids are categorised as essential (not produced in our bodies and need to be consumed in our foods) and non essentials ( the ones produced in our bodies anyway).
Until recently the best source of protein was considered the animal protein. This fact has been changing in the last few years. Several researches have shown that a diet with variety in vegetables can provide all 9 non essential amino acids to our bodies making the consumption of meat unnecessary.
Not only that but it seems the human body prefers to have the amino acids on their original form instead of having to break them down from meat in order to just reform them for their own use.
Almost all vegetables have amino acids in their composition, let alone nuts which are a great source of amino acids, thus allowing the body to accumulate all the needed non essential amino acids in order to synthesize protein.
Is it enough? If I were to make up my mind right now I would say that they are enough. However I have yet to see a clinical study that proves beyond any doubt that it is enough.
I know several successful bodybuilders that have been vegetarians, vegans or followed a raw food diet throughout their careers.
If such “restricting” diets provide such amazing bodies then it is proof that it is probably enough.
However, the decision is always yours to make.
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