Raw Food Diet for Detoxing
A raw food dies is plant-based and is comprised of at least 75% raw food. The raw foods in a raw food diet contain the enzymes that are thought to be removed during the cooking process.
Depending on the type of lifestyle and results desired, a raw food diet may include a selection of raw fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds (including sprouted whole grains), eggs, fish, meat, and unpasteurized dairy products (such as raw milk, cheese and yogurt). We recommend approaching body detoxification with a combination of periodic cleanses — once every season, for example — and daily dietary and lifestyle adjustments that reduce toxicity in the first place.
Principles of the Raw Food Diet:
- A raw food diet contains enzymes which aid digestion, meaning that the body's own enzymes may work unimpeded in regulating the body's metabolic processes, and heating food above 110-120 degrees Fahrenheit degrades or destroys these enzymes in food.
- Eating food without enzymes makes digestion more difficult, which could lead to toxicity in the body and cause excess consumption of food, obesity and chronic disease.
- A raw food diet provides natural bacteria and other micro-organisms that positively affect the immune system and digestion by populating the digestive tract with gut flora.
- Raw foods have higher nutrient values than foods which have been cooked.
- Wild foods are the most nutritious raw foods.
- Freezing food is acceptable, even though freezing lowers enzyme activity. This view is only held by some raw-foodists, with many raw-foodists actually viewing freezing as harmful, though not as unhealthy as cooking.
- Many Raw-Foodists, particularly Primal-Dieters, are believers in the Hygiene Hypothesis theory, a concept which focuses on the health-benefits of parasites and bacteria.
Raw Food for Weight Loss
Weight loss is almost a certainty on a raw food diet, due to it's vast differences to the conventional Western diet. Calorie and carbohydrate intake are reduced leading to weight loss. It is hard to overeat on a raw food diet due to the high water and fiber content - another reason why weight loss may occur.
A raw food diet can be very challenging to follow, particularly from a social and shopping perspective. However cooking time can be reduced!
Protein can be low unless appropriate levels of legumes, nuts, and seeds are eaten.
Generally a good diet, but potentially difficult to sustain. Proponents of the raw food diet claim a raw food diet has anti-aging properties.
Raw Food Diet Precautions
Certain studies have indicated detrimental health effects stemming from vegetarian and omnivorous raw food diets. A 2005 study has shown that a vegetarian raw food diet is associated with a lower bone density. One study of omnivorous raw food diets shows amenorrhea and underweightness in women. Another one indicates an increased risk of dental erosion with a raw food diet.
Other medical studies on raw food diets have shown some positive and negative health outcomes. Accoding to one medical trial, "long-term consumption of a raw food diet is associated with favorable serum LDL cholesterol and triglycerides but also with elevated plasma homocysteine and low serum HDL cholesterol" as well as vitamin B-12 deficiency.
Another study from Germany found that a "long-term strict raw food diet is associated with favourable plasma beta-carotene and low plasma lycopene concentrations."
A study mentioned benefits of a Raw Vegan diet for lowering obesity and hypertension.
A study has also shown reduced fibromyalgia symptoms for those on a vegan raw food diet as well as reduced symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis, according to another study.
Raw Food Diet Sample Meal Plan
Fresh fruit salad topped with chopped fresh almonds, wheat germ, and pumpkin seeds; organic sheep's milk yogurt or coconut cream.
Mixed salad of various leaves, tomatoes, yellow capsicums, onions and parsley with olive oil and balsamic vinegar dressing. Topped with sprouted lentils.
Raw mixed vegetable soup (blended); home-made sunflower seed cheese; 1/2 avocado; raspberry and banana sorbet.
Water, juices, fruit smoothies, coconut milk.