Its been a while since the fad on raw food diet, but there are still many of us who remain skeptical to it, having reservations about the idea thinking our body may not adjust to it.
I caught a segment on my local tv today, and there we have a naturopath and nutritionist introducing the raw food diet (short RFD). Here’s a little bit of research I’ve done and would like to share with my readers, hopefully me and you girls out there can start a plan to work on this together.
Why eat raw food?
Food is believed to retain most of its nutrients when it is uncooked. In a RFD, much as most of the food is eaten raw, heating is acceptable so long it is kept between 40-47 deg Celsius (104 – 118 deg. Fahrenheit). Cooking food is said to denature the enzymes found in natural food. These enzymes help us to digest food and to absorb the nutrients properly. If food is cooked, the enzymes will be lost, and thus this drives our body to work hard to produce more enzymes to aid digestion and absorption. In the long run, this cause digestive problems, nutrient deficiency, premature aging, and unhealthy weight gain.
Cooking also promotes the formation of potentially harmful compounds in food during high heat cooking, such as advanced glycation end products and heterocyclic amines.
To summarize the benefits (you probably only be looking at this section!)
- Cooking kills food. Most nutrients will be dead in cooked food.
- Cooking kills enzymes in the food. Enzymes help our body to break down the nutrients.
- Energy boost, its said that it gives you energy for a longer period of time.
- Boost bowel movements. High fibre food helps regulate your bowel movements.Getting waste out of your body fast and frequent should only be good.
- No controlled portions, as you hardly feel really full eating raw food. Its the carbs that make us feel full fast.
- It helps you sleep better. As with any well balanced and healthy body, you work better, and you sleep better too.
- Some said going on raw food makes them think and concentrate better.
- Clearer skin. When you have a healthier body system, your skin benefits too.
- Cleaner kitchens! Yes, you reduce on cooking and hence lesser clean ups!
Follow the Raw Food Pyramid as a guide to the proportions of the meal. Load up on “Eat Generously” and go low on “Eat Sparingly” foods.
What types of food for RFD?
- Green leafy vegetables – green leafy ones preferred. Hybrid vegetables (ie. beets, carrots, potatoes etc) should be avoided.
- Fruits – tomatoes, cucumbers etc. Avoid seedless hybrid fruit.
- Fats – Plant fruit that contains fat. (ie. avocados, olives, nuts etc)
- Dairy Products – These should be raw (ie. raw milk, cheese made from raw milk etc)
- Protein – Meat that are eaten raw (ie.sashimi, ceviche (raw fish), or carpaccio (raw meat))
- Avoid food that could be grown with pesticides, additives, food color or dyes. Best recommended organic food range.
This should be the most important part of the article. Most of us will find it hard to switch fully to a RFD, but the key is always adjustment. Start off with one meal a day, and gradually incorporate that into all our meals.
- For meat lovers, switch beef to pork, then to chicken, then to fish. This is a gradual but excellent way to let go of animal foods.
- Cooked food should be eaten in the evening. Try to combine this with salad or some fresh fruit-vegetable juice will be good.
- Starchy food should preferably be sweet fruits or roots (ie. sweet potatoes, yams etc)
Be easy and not too hard on yourself. Remember, your body sends out signals when it has problems adjusting to it. Look out for these signals.Try to keep to raw and organic food as much as possible, and try not to break the chain. It may seem tough at a start, but with discipline and faith, it should work well.
Here’s my salad for the day. Haven’t had one for a long time, with a little cheating of a small meat portion as I need my meaty proteins from all the exercising.
Are you a raw food junkie? If not, are you ready to start your journey? Share with us how yours went, if you have already done so.