The next four blogs are going to look at food and how it can enhance our health and wellbeing. This edition looks at raw food diet.
What is the raw food diet? This practice in eating, also known as clean eating, focuses on mainly eating plant-based, unprocessed and mainly uncooked foods or heated below 118 degrees. Its linked to veganism, although choices will depend on the individual, so some may add eggs and dairy. Once animal foods are added, the diet is no longer strictly raw food.
Roasted nuts or seeds, pasta, pastries, refined sugars, coffee, (non-herbal) teas, alcohol, pasteurised juices and dairy are not considered as part of the raw food diet.
Raw food types include vegetables, fruit, wholegrains, beans/legumes, nuts/seeds, herbs, spices, coconut, dark chocolate, vinegar, extra virgin olive, flax oil, coconut oil, sea salt, aloe vera and purified or spring water. Of course, organic goods are always best as less chance of pesticides used in growing and non-genetically modified.
10 identified foods that are healthiest raw are beetroot, broccoli, red or yellow onions, red bell peppers, nuts (almonds, cashews), berries, coconut, garlic, homemade juice, raw cacao (dark chocolate with a high cocoa mass).
The thinking behind the raw food diet is that wholesome food is at its most nutritious raw and uncooked. It’s known that cooking can reduce the nutrients in food, but is acceptable in your diet if it is not overcooked and high in nutrition content. Using a blender, juicer or processor to prepare food is allowed in moderation.
Some foods cannot be eaten raw as they are high risk of food poisoning, these are foods like raw meat, eggs, cassava, seafood and milk (Medical News Today).
There are many health benefits to eating a raw food diet such as anti-inflammation in body, reduces symptoms of chronic diseases, weight loss and maintaining average weight. It has not been proven that raw food diet is anti-disease but it helps to manage or minimise persistent symptoms. Eating identified combination of natural foods can boost energy and concentration. This diet can detoxify the body and act as an anti-inflammatory remedy or as a holistic approach to prevent ill health. The low level of sugar in this diet also prevents inflammation and dis-ease in the body.
The right vegetables and seeds supply plenty of protein and fibre. It needs to be understood that everything needs to be eaten in moderation, even though it’s healthy so the immune system is not overwhelmed. Also, it’s important to consciously understand why you are eating or drinking an item and how it will affect your body. Is it feeding or destroying your body?