Raw Food Diet – 5 Things You Probably Didn’t Know
If you’re looking for a meal plan that is as wholesome and natural as possible, and also want to give your home’s oven a break for awhile, a raw food diet is for you! Many people believe that eating raw is the best choice for overall health, as it’s believed that cooking foods will actually destroy many of its healthy nutrients. Raw food recipes are also full of very healthy foods that contain lots of natural fiber and antioxidants, and without additives and chemicals used as preservatives and which can be very unhealthy for you.
If you’ve been searching for a very healthy diet but aren’t sure if a raw food diet is the right choice, or assume this eating plan only includes cold fruits and vegetables, you might be surprised to find out how a raw food diet really works. Let’s take a closer look at a raw diet and what it includes, and also what it doesn’t include, so you can decide if this is the best choice for you.
1. What a raw food diet includes
A raw food diet shouldn’t be confused with a plain fruit and vegetable diet; you can and should have lots of fresh fruits and raw vegetables on such a diet, and certainly these are probably the healthiest foods for you. However, there are many other foods you can eat on a raw diet as well. Nuts, seeds, and sprouted grains are included; this would include nut milk or coconut milk, as long as they’re prepared without heat. Some people also include unpasteurized dairy foods including milk, as well as raw eggs and raw meats; this means you can actually have milk and sushi on a raw food diet, provided the milk is unpasteurized and the sushi isn’t prepared with cooked rice.
2. You can prep food on a raw food diet
A raw food diet doesn’t mean that you can’t heat foods; you can actually warm up food items, but only to 118 degrees Fahrenheit; it’s believed that foods cooked any warmer than this begin to lose their nutritional value. On a raw food diet, you can then warm up some broth and vegetables for a tasty veggie soup or warm up some fruit juice for something comforting to drink in wintertime.
Eating raw also doesn’t mean never preparing your foods; you can use blenders, food processors, dehydrators, and other appliances as needed. This allows you to make peanut butter with a blend of peanuts, salt, and oil, as well as foods like hummus, which is made with chickpeas, oil, garlic, lemon juice, and tahini.
You might also have tuna salad, made with raw tuna, onions, mayonnaise, chopped celery, and spices. Try making your own fruit juices by blending any variety of raw fruit and filtered water; you might also freeze these juices for a frozen treat during summertime. Many raw food recipes also call for seasonings such as salt, dill, oregano, and a variety of peppers, so you can have lots of flavor on your raw diet!
3. Following a raw vegan diet means more than plain fruits and veggies
A vegan diet means that you have no animal products, so that would mean no eggs, unpasteurized milk, or meats of any sort. However, you can still have foods like hummus and peanut butter, and mix up protein shakes with dried soy protein powder, nut milk, cocoa, peanut butter, and raw oats. You can also make up your own fruit and juice blends when following a raw vegan diet; try mixing bananas, pineapple, a bit of ginger, some spinach, and lots of filtered water for a healthy and sweet drink. Of course, salads with oil and vinegar for dressing can be the staple of a raw vegan diet, but add some hummus to this for added flavor and protein and so that you don’t get bored with your eating.
4. You may need more food prep than you realize with raw food recipes
If you enjoy eating a raw fruit and vegetable diet then you may not need to worry about food prep on your raw food diet. However, most people will find that raw vegan recipes and other meal plans will include a bit more food prep than they realized. You may not be cooking meat dishes and other foods for a raw meal, but you may still need to chop, blend, dry, warm up, and otherwise prep foods. Also, because cooking kills harmful bacteria as well as nutrients, you need to be extra cautious about food handling and storage since you won’t have that extra heat from cooking to make your food safe.
You may also try some new foods to ensure you don’t get bored with your raw diet; this can mean some different varieties of vinegar to go with the oil you use on salads, as well as exotic fruits you’ve never heard of and raw recipes that include uncooked fish or raw eggs. These types of raw recipes will not only keep you from getting bored, but will also ensure you’re getting the most variety of nutrients that might otherwise be missing from your raw food diet.
5. Want to know how to improve your health and how to lose weight fast? Try a raw food diet!
You may be considering a raw food diet as a way to improve your health, but if you want to know how to lose weight and keep it off for good, try eating raw! When you follow a raw fruit and vegetable diet or any raw diet, you won’t be getting all that sugar and fat that is often added to processed foods to give them flavor. In turn, you may eat far fewer calories overall, and be able to lose weight and keep it off for good!
A raw food diet also typically means no gluten, so those with celiac disease will have better digestion. No added fats in your diet can also mean lower cholesterol and blood pressure levels, as well as a lower risk for stomach cancer and kidney disease. Less sugar in your diet can help you better manage your diabetes and reduce your risk of blood glucose conditions. You’ll also be building better overall health from having all those vital nutrients that you would otherwise lose when you cook food, all from following a raw food diet.