Archive for the ‘Raw Food Q and A’ Category
Recently the Raw Foods movement has been getting attention for it’s ability to help you look younger, feel more energetic, loose weight, and live longer. Some even claim it can reverse diabetes and other degenerative diseases. Whether you agree with the claims or not you may be curious about the diet. A healthy curiosity is what brought me to raw foods, well that and a gorgeous book.
I was drawn to the raw foods movement by the book RAW by Roxanne Klein and Charlie Trotter. It’s beautiful cover beckoned to me from it’s well merchandised shelf. The forward and the introduction made the concept of eating raw foods sound positively enlightened. The section on local, sustainable farming and eating seasonally sealed the deal and I was ready to dive deep into raw cuisine. It seemed like the dietary path most aligned with what I wanted for myself and the planet. Then came the practical application of the concept, the recipes. The ingredient lists and the instructions (which called for a batch of something else on some other page, which in turn called for a half batch of yet another recipe) were overwhelming. The time and organization required to make the majority of the dishes was nothing less than shocking. My romance with raw food ended abruptly after a few ego-crushing attempts to make dishes that tasted, at best, mediocre.
Luckily during my enthusiastic first days of infatuation, my supportive husband loaded up our library card with books, new and old, on raw cuisine. Turns out the concept need not be as glamorous or challenging as keeping up with Trotter and Klein. It was really simple, eat whole, raw foods in their natural state. Easy. A quick review of how I was already eating, lots of salads, fresh veggies and fruits, had me thinking, “I’m half way there. A few changes and I can go raw- no problem.” I embarked on a two week raw adventure and, since I’m the only cook in our house, I took my family along for the ride. The raw cleanse was fantastic, we all loved the food. My husband thought we were “eating like kings”. My daughter was showing off our raw crackers and nut cheeses at school. I was feeling energetic and clear headed without coffee. A beautiful side effect of the cleanse was that the pesky little bit of cellulite on the back of my thighs that somehow hangs on despite regular exercise disappeared. That was it, I was sold.
Although I love my raw food results, I’m not going 100% raw. I’m not a believer in exclusive, restrictive diets and raw can definitely be both if you let it. Truth be told, roasted garlic and sautéed onions are just too delicious to exclude from my diet in the name of adhering to an absolute protocol. I love broccoli steamed, sweet potatoes baked, and a host of other cooked foods. Instead of being a purist, I see raw foods as a significant source of healthy dishes in my diet, a new culinary frontier that challenges my creativity, and a delicious way to eat more vegetables than I ever have. The pious can judge me for failing to go fully raw, and while they do pass me their portion of pan seared ahi. That’s right, I’m not even a vegetarian. Judge away! The bottom line is raw foods is not the path to health, it’s a path to health. Take from it what works with your body and carve your own dietary path through this life.
There is no doubt in my mind that raw foods are beneficial, that they are worth the trouble, time and expense. Raw Food Recipes perfect the art of getting more vegetables in our diets in more delicious ways than I ever thought possible. The most amusing part of my raw foods experience is seeing veggie-haters gobble up “neat balls” or BLTs made with eggplant bacon and ask for seconds without even knowing their whole meal is composed of all raw foods. Give raw foods a shot. If you want the full experience, try a week long or fourteen day raw cleanse. If you have a social life, a job, and a family that you cannot (and why would you want to) put on hold during your adventures in raw food, here are some tips.
The real key to a successful raw diet is to keep it simple. Save the challenging recipes for special occasions and learn how to make everyday meals special with easy, time saving tricks.
If done well, you will spend less time and money on your raw meals than you do on a Standard American Diet (which raw foodists refer to as SAD). Processed foods, meat and dairy are expensive compared to in-season vegetables and fruits.
You will need to spend more time planning meals and be more organized, unless of course you outsource that to menu plans, which are fabulous for saving time, money and trips to the store. If you are serious about going raw you can even hire a raw foods coach.
You won’t need to eat as much as you normally do. At first we overate and felt uncomfortably full. Be aware that the food is more nutrient dense, you’ll need less to feel full. Eat, chill out and chat a while, then eat more if you are still hungry.
Try new things! Before our adventures in raw food we never ate beets, kale, chard, and a host of other nutrient rich foods that we now enjoy on an almost daily basis. Raw recipes boast delicious ways of incorporating foods that are generally unpopular. If you discount recipes whenever you see a vegetable that you normally don’t enjoy, you will miss out on massive dietary benefits.
Don’t feel pressure to go raw and stay raw. Try it out and see what works for your body. After our raw adventure we stuck with about an 80% raw plan with great results in energy level, appearance and over-all health.
Joy Houston is author of The Delicious Revolution, and a life long student of healthy cooking.
Her books http://www.healthyfoodscookbook.com and website http://www.thedeliciousrevolution.com, offer recipes for the practical application of current health news. It’s not enough to know what foods are good for you, you need delicious ways to prepare them so you consume them regularly.
Her recipes are quick, easy and presented in a very entertaining style. She offers time and money saving meal plans and easy-to-follow instructional videos.
Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Joy_Houston
Image Credit: lovingraw.com
Have you bought the idea that a completely raw food diet is the ultimate, most logical, best diet for all humankind, no matter where they live in the world? (Like eskimos eating watermelon…)
It seems to me that it’s the implied idea transmitted by many raw-foodists, raw food website, books and seminars.
The idea is:
Raw Food is Good, Cooked Food is Evil, and the World Would Be a Better Place If Everyone Ate Only Raw Foods
OK, I may be exaggerating, but often that’s the general tone of many of the raw food gurus’ message.
Is it actually true?
Would it be possible that the resources required to transport those foods would actually make the Raw Food diet fairly unecological, considering the fact that eating a diet of bananas and mangoes in Northern Canada isn’t the most natural choice?
How much food do you need as a 100% raw food eater?
It’s fairly well-known that anyone deciding to eat only raw foods in a sustainable way (for health) needs to eat a tremendous quantity of fresh fruits and vegetables.
In order to get enough calories from fruits and vegetables, without using too much raw fat (which would be detrimental for health), here’s the average amount of food that’s necessary:
For a 2000 calorie diet: 10 pounds a day (with peels and all)
For a 3000 calorie diet: 15 pounds a day (with peels and all)
I based those numbers on average consumption most 100% raw foodists go through in a typical day (those who are not on a detox program!).
So basically, 70 to over 100 pounds of food per week!
That’s a lot.
Where does your food come from?
If we would want to get a more accurate picture on the ecological impact that eating a large quantity of imported fruits would have versus a smaller quantity of local cooked, animal or grain foods, we would need to analyze a lot of variables. I haven’t been able to get an accurate estimate from the data that’s available.
But just knowing that most imported fruits come from fairly far away, and that large quantities are necessary on a completely Raw Food Diet, I can draw the obvious conclusion that eating this way is not necessarily the most logical, natural and ecological choice.
- Grapes from Chile travel a minimum of 4000 miles to get to you
- Bananas from Costa Rica travel about 2000 miles or more to get to you
- Mangoes from Mexico at least 1000 miles to get to you
- And so on…
All of the fossil fuels used to transport all of these foods leave an impact, which may offset or even counter-balance the possible environmental benefits of choosing a raw vegan diet (which requires less resources when produced locally), versus a local diet that would contain both raw, cooked, plant and possibly even animal foods.
It’s always been obvious to me that a diet of all raw foods in Canada makes less sense on many levels that one that includes some cooked foods, more local foods and fewer imported fruits.
There’s also the fact that these fruits are picked unripe in many cases, the acidity level is too high and the nutrient level too low.
So is the solution for all raw-food enthusiasts to move to the tropics? Certainly not!
My point is:
- There’s no need to demonize cooked food – A diet that includes both raw and cooked food makes a lot of sense on many levels. You don’t have to eat 100% raw. This is really an individual choice based on your health, your location, and your preference.
- A raw food diet can be unnatural – Eating 100% raw foods in the north can be unnatural and unsustainable. And for many more reasons that I can expand on in future articles, it’s certainly not a solution that can be proposed to the entire world!
- If you live in the north, follow the seasons – Many people, as summer approaches, have the desire to include more raw food in their diet. But in the winter, instead of freezing to death, they choose to incorporate more raw, cooked foods. That is perfectly fine, natural and even desirable for most people.
Here’s a list of some additional tips to enable you to eat more ecologically and sustainably, while incorporating more raw fruits and vegetables in your diet, no matter where you live:
1- Freeze Berries and other Fruits in Season – Berries are some of the most nutritious and antioxidant-packed foods you can eat. To avoid the consumption of too much imported foods in the winter, I encourage you to freeze a huge quantity of ripe, local, organically grown (or wild) fresh berries when they are in season. I personally freeze a lot of wild blueberries, which are local. Then, use them throughout the winter in your recipes. You can thaw them in advance to avoid the negative effect of consuming cold foods.
2- Grow Sprouts – Grow some fresh, toxin-free sprouts such as clover and sunflower greens, to get a supply of cheap, fresh, local vegetables in the winter!
3- Avoid out of Season Fruits – Some fruits may be available in your store, but may actually be out of season in your hemisphere of the world. If you live in North America, the season for grapes usually ends in September or October. Grapes during the winter are imported from countries situated in the opposite hemisphere, such as Chile, where the seasons are reversed. Avoid that! Learn the seasons of different fruits and vegetables and choose to avoid foods imported from such far-away places.
4- Make Different Salads and Vegetable Dishes in the Winter – In one of my recipe books, I give different kinds of salads and dressings depending on the season. In the winter, I recommend salads made with cabbage, carrots and other root vegetables. In the summer, I incorporate more lettuce, tomatoes and fresh vegetables. You should do the same.
5- Shun Exotic Fruits – Exotic fruits such as durian, Thai coconuts and litchis can be great to try, but they inevitably come from faraway countries such as Thailand. In addition to leaving a huge ecological impact for being imported from so far, they are also heavily sprayed with toxic chemicals. Durians are particularly notorious for that. Try them for fun, but stick to fruits and vegetables as local as possible – at least from somewhere you could drive to.
Finally, I would like to encourage you to continue making the best choices for your health. Sometimes, that may sometimes mean:
- Eating fresher, locally grown commercial foods instead of less fresh, imported organic foods
- Eating ripe, local commercial food instead of unripe, imported organic foods
- And eating some cooked, warm “local” food instead of just cold imported fruits
Lookt at true consequences of your own choices, and realize that there’s not one size that fits all.
Frederic Patenaude is the author of the book “The Raw Secrets” and offers a free subscription to his ezine “Outrageous Health & Success” — available at http://www.FredericPatenaude.com
Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Frederic_Patenaude
Raw food diet, in a nutshell, is simply a diet consisting of fresh plant foods that have not been cooked or processed. This includes fruits and vegetables as well as nuts and grains; however, there are different types of Raw Food diets that are popular right now, and these depend upon the preference of the individual.
One very popular type is the fruitarian whose diet mainly consists of fruits, although there are some fruitarians, too, who also include a small amount of vegetables and sprouts in their diet. As a general rule, you may already be called a fruitarian if your diet is 75% fruits. Another popular type is the sunfood diet which is also known as a raw vegan diet. The diet is predominantly made up of raw green vegetables as well as fruits. They also include plant-based fats in their diets. These are just some of the raw food diet types that many individuals are embracing these days.
Aside from the different types, you should also know the pros and cons of raw food diet. When it comes to advantages, raw food diet, without a doubt, offers the most benefit. Not only will it increase your energy level as well as improve the condition of your skin, but it will also help you lose some weight as well as help your digestive system function properly. In the long run, raw food diet helps your heart and circulatory system as it decreased the accumulation of bad cholesterol and decreases the risk for diseases. As for its disadvantages, you will notice some mild headaches during the first few days of the raw food diet, and you will also feel some nausea as your body adjusts to the diet. This is because of the detoxification process that you are going to go through, especially if you have been used to a diet high in calorie and fat. Of course, you will also experience cravings for sweet and meat as you adjust to your new diet, but you should know though that the food cravings do not persist and usually go away after a few weeks.
Although raw food diet is very beneficial to one’s health, it is also important that you know the contraindications to this type of diet. For one, you should take it easy on the Raw Food Diet if you are pregnant or are still nursing a baby simply because you and your baby need more nutrients and vitamins that can be found in other types of food sources such as meat. Children also need a variety of food, except raw food, for the simple reason that they are still growing and need nutrients as well as minerals and vitamins that other food sources can provide.
The basic principle of The Negative Calorie Diet involves eating various fruits and vegetables that have a negative calorie effect. There is no such thing as a negative calorie food. There are however, foods that use more calories to digest than they contain. You can eat an abundance of these negative calorie foods so you don’t feel hungry while you’re on the diet.
Here are the Pro’s of The Negative Calorie Diet:
1. Excellent for quick weight loss and subsequent weight maintenance
2. Can be followed in combination with other dietary programs
3. Practical, maintainable and easy to follow with little effort as the foods can be consumed in their raw natural state
4. Does not involve fasting, only consuming healthy foods that are rich in vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and fiber
5. Allows generous portions of low calorie foods
6. Promises greatly improved body metabolism
7. Includes an amazingly easy to follow exercise plan and many delicious recipes
Here are the Con’s of The Negative Calorie Diet:
1. If you really dislike fruits and vegetables, this diet is not for you
2. Food preparation may be somewhat time-consuming
3. A sudden reduction of calorie intake may cause problems such as tiredness and weakness
4. May only be good for short-term weight loss
5. Excludes certain nutrients, vitamins, and minerals which are necessary for good health
6. Omits foods containing reliable amounts of proteins and fats
7. Very few proofs or scientific studies have been documented confirming the theory that certain foods require more calories to digest than they contain
The benefits far outweigh the disadvantages. Not only do you lose weight fast, but the diet cleanses your entire system and increases your intake of fresh fruits and vegetables. –- This is a good thing!
Is The Negative Calorie Diet for you?
The answer is yes! — If you want to drop those extra pounds before summer, and love fruits and vegetables, look no further than The Negative Calorie Diet.
Find out if the Negative Calorie Diet is for you at
As a fitness professional, I’m always amazed (and puzzled) with the conflict people seem to have with losing weight, yet they refuse to stop eating junk food. An interesting thing I have noticed over my many years helping people to lose weight is that almost every single person that has told me that they are “attempting” to lose weight, almost always has their house filled with all sorts of junk food instead of whole unprocessed natural food.
It is not uncommon for people to tell me that they are trying really hard to lose weight, but I will still notice boxes of apple jacks and fruity pebbles on their counters, cakes, candies, and chips in their cupboard, and sodas or syrupy juices in their refrigerator.
So the question that always stumps me is that if all of these people honestly wanted to lose weight so bad, why in the world do most people still have their houses filled with junk foods instead of healthy food?
Interestingly, the answer usually is that they do not want to give up their favorite foods because they think that eating this junk food allows them to “live a little”… if you ask me, it sounds more like dying a little with each bite!
My take on it is that eating junk foods has nothing at all to do with enjoying your life… In reality, when you give up junk foods you actually enjoy life more because you feel better and are more energetic every day. In addition, getting into better shape by not eating junk food can obviously help improve the way your body looks (and therefore increases your confidence), thereby making you enjoy life even more.
One thing that many people fail to realize is that eating healthy does not have to mean eating bland and boring food. Instead, when you learn to enjoy natural unprocessed food and start exploring all of the varieties of natural food that this planet has to offer us, you learn that you can enjoy the natural flavors of real foods more than overly processed aggressive tastes that are so common with excessively sweet and salty junk food.
An example of this is that the other day I wanted an unsweetened iced tea while out on the road, but all that the store had available was these bottles of heavily sweetened iced tea. Well, I have not bought a fully sweetened iced tea in probably at least a few years now… I have actually gotten used to drinking unsweetened iced tea and have learned to appreciate the natural taste of tea without needing sugar or other sweeteners.
When I drank this bottled sweet tea, I almost gagged because it was so syrupy sweet, it was absolutely nasty.
A similar example… I used to need a lot of sugar in coffee, but after a slowly reducing the amount of sugar I would use in coffe, I can now actually drink black coffee and enjoy the natural flavor of it without needing sweeteners (although I rarely drink coffee).
These are just a couple examples of how once you start appreciating the natural flavors of real food, you find that you no longer need the super-aggressive salty, sugary, or artificial flavors that have been ingrained in us by the food companies and all of the junk food they push on us.
My belief is that everyone should actually enjoy what they eat, and can do it without eating overly processed junk food… Actually, people are often surprised to hear that a lot of the foods that they think are junk food, I have healthy alternatives that they never thought of.
A few examples:
Junk food: a chocolate candy bar, a chocolate donut, or a piece of chocolate cake
Healthier alternative: a couple pieces of extra-dark chocolate (greater than 70-75% cocoa content only)… this is higher in fiber and much less sugar than milk chocolate or even dark chocolates that are less than 70% cocoa content
Junk food: Deep fried and breaded chicken fingers and fries on the side (loads of nasty trans fats)
Healthier alternative: grilled chicken breast strips with peanut dipping sauce and vegetables on the side
Junk food: a cheap fast-food burger on a processed refined white bun
Healthier alternative: A grass-fed burger (higher in CLA and omega-3 fats) with raw grass-fed cheese on a sprouted grain roll
How about that for eating healthier yet still very tasty foods!
I hope that what you get out of this article is that there is more to life than eating junk food, and eating junk does not necessarily mean that you’re “living a little” as so many people say. Instead, I feel the opposite is true.
Eat healthier and discover the natural flavors of real foods (not processed) and you’ll soon discover that you no longer need junk food. Enjoy!