By Wayne Hoover
I want to talk a little bit of what it feels like to be a raw foodist.
Definition of raw food
Simply- A raw foodist is someone who does not eat food heated over 115 F. So basically a raw foodist does not cook his/her food- and a vegan is someone who does not eat animal products of any kind.
What it feels like to be a raw foodist
I have been a raw foodist vegan for the past 4 months and have never felt better in my life. Its true- ask my housemates- I don’t eat cooked food. In fact I slightly cringe at the sight of cooked food these days- it might smell good but just the sight of it makes me feel a bit quessy.
Honestly- I have more energy- more mental clarity- more physical health than I can remember. Transitioning to a raw food diet is probably one of the best decisions I have ever made in my life- its absolutely- positively- amazing.
You don’t have to cook your food to sustain yourself
The point of the matter is that you really don’t have to cook your food if you don’t want to. Cooking food is not necessary for nutrition. Most of us are raised with cooked so cooking our food has become something we simply don’t question because we have been accustomed to doing it for so long. Of course there are some food items that you just can’t eat raw- like beans and grains (unless you sprout them). But most- I would say 99%- of whole foods available to us are completely eatable raw.
The truth is- that there is no mineral- no vitamin- no nutrient that you can not get on a raw food diet. All minerals- all vitamins- all nutrients (I would say more) are available to a raw foodist.
There are a lot of “scientific” studies out there that explain why eating raw food is better for you than eating cooked food; a lot of it has to do with enzymes… But honestly that doesn’t interest me at the moment. I don’t feel the need to completely understand the “science” of something that I know so deeply to be true. There is no doubt in my mind that a diet made up of 100% raw food is the best possible diet. I know this to be true- because I can feel it inside my own body. I don’t need the studies- or even the testimonials anymore- I just know.
My journey towards a 100% raw food diet
Of course- I was a little skeptical when I first heard about the raw food diet. The idea that we must cook our food before we eat it is highly hegemonic- so it’s natural to not feel completely comfortable with the idea of a 100% raw food diet at first. It took some time for me to completely digest the idea- it also took actually experimenting with it to truly understand it.
The first time that I tried to go raw was about a year ago and I failed miserably. There are two reasons I failed the first time I tried to go raw.
- I was trying to eat 100% right away
- I had no idea about what to eat
— I didn’t allow myself to gradually- effortlessly- come into a full raw diet.
— I didn’t know a thing about nutrition
Gradually- this last summer- I noticed that most of my meals where raw- or mostly raw- so I decided to make it a firm choice and stick to eating 100% raw food all the time. The moment I made that decision is the one of the best moments of my life.
My body truly feels light and extremely energetic. I can’t wait until I have been raw for a couple years and I have completely detoxified my body from all the cooked foods I have eaten in the past.
I follow the basic diet that David Wolfe lays out in his book The Raw Food Diet Success System; basically its a triangle in which each leg is important. The three legs of the triangle are:
— You know dark leafy greens like kale- and salad stuff
— Coconuts- Durians- Avocado- nuts and seeds
I try to evenly balance these three a day- not based on overall weight but based on weight minus water weight. So this means I need to eat a lot less nuts than greens in weight- because nuts are so low in water content. I usually eat my sugars in the morning; for example- a mellon or a fruit smoothy. During Mid-day I get my fat needs maybe with a couple avocados or some nuts. Around dinner is when I get my dose of greens for the day which is usually blended for easy digestion.
The raw food community is growing
Personally I know about 5 raw foodists- have and continue to read a number raw food books (recipe and theory) and blogs. I am happily surprised to see that the community is growing; for example check out how many people at eat.rawfood.com has or how many user submitted recipes goneraw.com has. Its nice to have such a big community of raw foodists on the internet about raw food. The two most prominent authors on raw food are David Wolfe (Famous for The SunFood Diet Success System– the book on raw food ) and Gabriel Cousins (Famous for Conscious Eating and his raw food retreat center)
This is the first post in a number on raw food. What should I focus on next? Leave a comment.