Transitioning to Raw Foods: Why to Transition, and How to Make the Change

The Raw food movement is gaining more popular appeal as people are becoming more aware of the connection between health and nutrition. If you are considering transitioning to a diet of raw foods I would like to impart a few facts and suggestions to help you on you way.

The first thing you may wonder might be: why should I consider raw foods in my diet? By and large, people don’t eat the recommended serving of fresh fruits, nuts, and veggies. One trip to a supermarket and it’s easy to see that the bulk of what is on the shelves is highly processed, pre-prepared products. These products have lost a great deal of their nutritive value in processing, cooking, shipping and preserving. Many of these products are grown with pesticides and antibiotics and are preserved, processed, and colored with chemicals. The net result is a toxic, nutrient poor, desiccated food product. If you top radioactive fallout, chemtrails, and air pollution on top of this it leads to a cumulative toxification of the human biological organism known as bioaccumulation.

Cell malnutrition and cell toxicity lead to a whole host of degenerative diseases and some would state to all disease. Whole, raw foods are high in water, fiber, and nutrients that can help detoxify the system. This cleans the cells free from toxins so that nutrients can be taken up and regeneration can take place. Raw food also contains live enzymes which aid in digestion, allowing the body to utilize its own enzymes for cell maintenance. In 1941, Dr Linus Pauline, a nobel prize winning scientist concluded that mental and physical illness are brought on by nutrient and enzyme deficiency. In 1930, Dr. Paul Kouchakoff completed a study on the effects of raw food on white blood cells. He found that the body has an immune system response called leukocytosis when a person ate a diet of more than 50 % cooked and processed foods. Leukocytosis is a surge in white blood cells that attack the body itself. In 1958, Dr max Gerson published a book call A Cancer Therapy: Results of 50 cases in which he explains his method of curing cancer with a diet of juices and raw living foods.

It stands to reason that raw foods were in the diets of our ancestors in that they were simple. No preparation was needed. By and large, indigenous people eat a diet of roughly 50% raw or more. There are no examples of 100% raw diets in indigenous culture however, the Hunza people of the Himalayas are perhaps the closest. The Hunza are also renowned for their health and longevity. Inuit peoples ate large quantities of raw and fermented meat.

As one considers transition to raw foods be very aware of your body’s internal signals. A 100% raw vegan diet may not be for everyone. Certainly a basis of 50 % raw fruits, nuts,and vegetables is advisable. Depending on your blood type, personal lifestyle and genetics you may need to incorporate meats or other foods. Just take it easy and take it slow. A diet of processed foods is very easily digestible. It takes time to clean out and rebuild the intestinal flora and to adjust to the added fiber in the diet. Be gentle with yourself. Some people can jump in to a 100% vegan diet without any problems. I, took a full year to transition. I began by buying a vitamin and incorporating a green smoothie as my breakfast. In time, I added more snacks of fruits and nuts. Eventually, I rotated a salad into the mix. All the while I was eating whatever else I wanted to. After awhile I started experimenting with fancier recipes. I found that I needed raw goats milk and cheese with the active lifestyle I live as a professional gardener.

I suggest the additive approach. As you add more live foods many people find their tastes change and they crave more nutrient and enzyme dense foods. If you find the need to eat meat eat light meats like fish or poultry or purchase locally grass fed beef or bison. Taking supplementary enzymes with a heavy meal aids in digestion. If going 100% vegan be sure to get equal servings of fruits, veggies, and sprouted nuts and grains. More than anything it pays to be mindful of what you eat and to allow yourself to love yourself enough to take in only the highest quality foods you can afford. After all, you are what you eat!