The raw food diet is a diet where the foods are consumed in their raw state. Foods are considered to be raw if they have not been exposed to high temperatures above 115 degrees Fahrenheit. This ensures that all enzymes and nutrients are left unchanged and intact so that the body is able to absorb them faster.
In addition, raw foods contain many antioxidants that help neutralize free radicals and eliminate toxins. According to studies, most age related diseases and common ailments are the result of too many toxins in the body. Thus the raw food diet can help to slow down the aging process by preventing diseases.
Variations of the Raw Food Diet
There are several different variations of the raw food diet and they include the Raw Vegan Diet, the Raw Vegetarian Diet and the Raw Omnivorous Diet. All three focus on raw foods, but each diet has slightly different restrictions.
Raw Vegan Diet. The raw vegan diet is the strictest of the variations, but it is also the healthiest and the most popular.
The diet mainly consists of raw fruits and vegetables, herbs and spices, sprouts, nuts and seeds, as well as many superfoods such as raw cacao, goji berries, protein powders and sea vegetables. The superfoods usually are not available in most grocery stores, but can be purchased in most health food stores or online.
The raw foods are often eaten as they are, or mixed together in salads, smoothies, or are juiced in a juicer. Many western recipes can be mimicked with raw foods, such as ice creams, raw fruit pies, pizzas and many others. Bread, crackers and cookies can be mimicked by using a dehydrator, which is an oven-like appliance that dehydrates the foods at low temperatures over a period of 4 or more hours.
Raw Vegetarian Diet. The raw vegetarian diet is not quite as strict as the vegan, as it allows for the consumption of dairy, eggs and honey. However, there are some vegetarians that only consume eggs, while others will only consume dairy, and still others refuse to eat dairy and eggs, but will use honey as a natural sweetener.
Raw Omnivorous Diet. This diet is the most relaxed diet, as it allows for all animal products provided that they do not contain harmful food additives such as colorants and/or preservatives.
All animal products, whether consumed by the raw vegetarians or raw omnivores are usually obtained from free range and grass-fed animals in order to reduce the risks of ingesting harmful bacteria. In addition, foods from grass-fed animals also contain more nutrients.
Does the Raw Food Diet Eliminate All Cooked Foods?
Many who hear about the raw food diet think that they can no longer enjoy their favorite cooked meals. But this is not so. Dieters can consider themselves to be a raw foodist if they consume at least 75% of their foods in the raw state. This allows for a partially cooked meal every night.