Raw foodism simply refers to the practice of eating only or mostly uncooked or unprocessed foods. It is a lifestyle that promotes eating foods in their natural state, in order to get all the essential nutrients without any dangerous additives. It’s not as bad as it sounds so don’t go picturing anything ‘vampire-like’. Raw food diet focuses on fruits and veggies and has so many undisputed benefits that will be mentioned in a bit. It focuses on uncooked, unprocessed, and mostly organic foods.
The controversy though, lies in the question; how much raw food diet does it take for me to become a raw-foodist? The thing is that there are all sorts of variations of raw food diets and with them, different advice and degrees to which food can be cooked. The bond between various raw food diets is that they do not include foods that are pasteurized, homogenized, or produced with the use of synthetic pesticides, chemical food fertilizers, and industrial solvents or chemical food additives.
Transitioning from any previous diet to a raw food diet should not be done in a rush to avoid difficulties. Difficulties such as digestive problems and cravings may arise as a result. You are advised to take baby steps. The transition might be hard especially for people who aren’t comfortable with eating raw food. The key is to transition slowly.
Cooking nutrient-dense foods tends to destabilize some of their valuable enzymes and destroy certain antioxidants and vitamins. Cooked foods are also harder to digest than raw foods contrary to what people believe. Many high-antioxidant foods are sensitive to cooking because phytonutrients don’t stand up well to high temperatures. It causes a change in the food, enzymes are lost and the food becomes less beneficial. Raw food diets may include; raw fish, diary, meat or eggs. It may also include a few cooked foods.
Raw foods neutralize the body’s acidity and help to alkalize the body. When acidity rises in the body leading to less immunity, the body becomes more prone to diseases. Cooked foods unlike raw foods create an even more acidity in the body. The overall goal is to consume more natural, nutrient-dense and unprocessed food.
HEALTH BENEFITS OF RAW FOOD DIET
- Improves cardiovascular health
- Aids digestion
- Results in glowing skin
- Aids optimal liver function
- Treatment for constipation
- Prevention of cancer
- Slows the aging process
- WEIGHT-LOSS: maintaining a raw food diet is efficient in weight loss. Raw foods contain a lot of fiber and nutrients which helps in curbing your cravings keeping you feeling full all the time. Half the struggle of losing weight is not having cravings or always feeling hungry.
Raw foods though having the fewest calories give satiation by raising the blood sugar and reducing appetite. Raw foods naturally purge unwanted fat out of the body and allow the cells of the body to do their job in cleaning the body.
Here are some raw foods that you can start out with:
- citrus fruits,
- extra virgin oil or coconut oil,
- Raw veggies like tomatoes, carrots and peppers
- Raw yoghurt.
Do not fail to consult with your doctor or your personal health care provider before venturing into new diets.