If you’ve ever seen a before and after picture of someone who is on a raw food diet, it seems they have found the fountain of youth and vitality.
Not only do they look years younger than what they really are, but their hair and skin look flawless and pristine.
People who consume a raw food diet only eat un-processed, generally plant-based, organic foods that are uncooked. Some do it for 100 per cent of their food, and others diets consist of at least three-quarters of raw food.
The belief is that if food is consumed in its most natural state, and not altered by cooking that could lessen the vitamin, mineral and nutrient value, they are getting more benefits from the food and therefore are healthier for it. They also claim to have more energy, improved digestion and are at a lower risk of disease.
While most who consume a raw food diet are vegans, people who consume foods with no animals products in them whatsoever, there are actually four categories of raw food diets.
These include raw vegetarians who only eat eggs and dairy, but the majority of their food is still raw, raw vegans, raw omnivores who eat both plant and animal-based foods raw, and raw carnivores, who eat everything, including meat.
There are many ways raw foodists prepare and eat their food. For example, sprouting grain and bean seeds are eaten as opposed to canned or whole uncooked beans, nuts are soaked, fruits are eaten as is or dried and juicing is a big part of raw food eating. Raw carnivores eat their meat raw.
However, many nutritionists caution those who are starting a raw food diet to be careful of toxins that are found in many uncooked foods. For example, raw eggs contain avadin, while cooked eggs don’t, kidney beans contain a chemical called phytohaemagglutinin and their sprouts may be toxic, and uncooked meats may contain harmful bacteria, parasites and various viruses.
If you know how to prepare and eat foods properly, you can successfully consume a raw food diet and be healthier for it.