The benefits of eating raw foods
Raw foods are amazing for the body — they help to naturally cleanse, purify, alkalize, and flush toxins from your system. Raw living foods contain enzymes, which are crucial for digestion. The living enzymes help to break down the food you consume into vital nutrients (vitamins, mineral, proteins, etc.). When you consume raw foods, it takes major stress off your body and allows it to filter your food through your system much easier than when you are eating cooked or processed foods. Raw foods are uncooked, unprocessed, un-canned, and unaltered. Your body will feel the difference, it will begin cleaning and healing itself when you return to consuming foods in their raw, natural state. Let’s discuss some tips for adopting a raw food lifestyle.
Seven tips to staying raw
1. Buy and store raw food
You will eat what you buy. It’s important to throw away all the junk “food”, processed “foods”, and canned “foods”. Remember that these are not real foods; for the most part, these are toxins that you’re putting in your body and they lack the nutrition and self-cleansing attributes that raw foods possess. Snack on fruits throughout the day, especially if you have a sweet tooth. Fruits are a natural way to do away with your sweet cravings. I know its tempting to just grab that bag of chips and snack on that, but those chips are processed and will not help to flush your system, instead they will back it up. Don’t store temptations. Instead, you can replace those chips with dehydrated vegetable and fruit chips which can easily be bought at several stores. I even suggest investing in a dehydrator (I use the brand Dehydro, you can find it on amazon). You can make kale chips, apple chips, banana chips, raw flax bread and a ton of other goodies using your dehydrator. Many people enjoy using a dehydrator because it will give you the sensation of a cooked food but still maintain its raw state. The dehydrator will draw out moisture but not cook the food. The dehydrator work’s amazing and is a great investment. Buy and store raw foods, it may even be cheaper and save you some money in the short-term and in the long-term by preventing future ailments.
2. Pre-prep and pack your meals
Pre-prepping your meals will help you stay on track when you’re out on the road, when you’re tired, or when you’re short on time. When you have something prepared, it will eliminate the urge to grab some “fast” “foods”. Remember this is junk and not food and it will ultimately slow you down on your journey to a healthier you. Don’t forget the old saying “those who fail to plan, plan to fail”. Plan to be healthy. I like to make prepackaged salads inside of airtight containers and take them on the go. You will want to consume all raw food within 1-2 days to make sure you are getting the optimum health benefits from the foods.
3. Your body will crave the foods you are used to, but don’t give in!
While transitioning into eating raw, your body will naturally begin to crave the junk food. This is temporary and your taste buds will change as you consume more raw foods. When the temptations come remind yourself why you are changing your eating habits, and focus on how cleansing and removing toxic waste from your system is going to benefit you. When you begin to have a craving for French fries, make some kale chips instead. When you crave ice cream, make some raw sorbet instead. Eating healthier doesn’t mean eating less or going hungry, it means making better choices. You will have to substitute the bad foods for similar foods that are actually healthy for you.
4. Surround yourself with likeminded individuals
It’s important to keep people around you who will cheer you on during this process, and encourage you to keep going when the temptations come. Find a health group in your area, or connect with other raw vegans online using social media. This will give you inspiration and help you to keep going when you start to crave other foods. Also, find your local raw food restaurants. When you don’t feel like cooking, you can go to the restaurants that make healthy foods instead of stopping to grab fast food.
5. Obtain the proper equipment
So there are a few pieces of equipment that have made my raw food journey much easier to stick to. I recommend investing in good equipment to help you stay on track.
High-speed blender: I personally love my blender. It is amazing for making smoothies, raw cheese, raw cakes, raw soups, and so much more. I literally use mine daily so it is so worth the investment. I suggest the Vitamix if you want a reliable blender. I purchased mine from Costco. (You can find a great high-speed blender at Costco, online, or purchase a payment plan via QVC.
Juicer: Juicing is amazing while detoxing because the nutrients are released into your blood stream with out stress being put on your digestive system. Juicing is a great way to get a ton of nutrition into your body all at one time. (You can find a great juicer on amazon for around $200.00-2500.00$.) Some great juicer brands include Breville, Omega, Angel Press, and the best juicer on the market is the Norwalk.
Food processor: The food processor is great for chopping vegetables; it also works amazing for making raw guacamole, raw sorbets, and raw puddings. (You can find a great food processor at target or Walmart for around $30.00-$45.00)
Dehydrator: The dehydrator will warm your food but not heat it beyond 118 degrees Fahrenheit. This is great because it provides the sensation of cooked foods without destroying any of the vital nutrients. (You can find a great dehydrator on amazon for around $45.00-$100.00)
6. Invest in knowledge
When you are starting something new, it is important to do research and invest in knowledge. A good way to do this is by studying and learning from those who have had success in the area you want to become successful in. I started reading books, and doing a ton of research online about the raw food journey. I found so much encouragement to keep going when I wanted to go back to my old ways of eating. Below are a list of helpful books and documentaries.
The Raw food Life Style by Ruthann Russo
Your Body’s Many Cries for Water by F. Batmanghelidj
Alkalize or Die by Theodore A Baroody
The Beauty Detox by Kimberly Synder
The Live Food Factor by Susan Schenck
Fat Sick & Nearly Dead
Forks Over Knives
7. Put your knowledge to work!
I once heard, “knowledge is not power, the application of knowledge is power”. When I first started my raw food journey, oh boy was I lost (haha). I was super confused on where to start, what to buy, and how to prepare raw foods. I searched on Google for months because I was determined to learn how to live a healthier lifestyle. I then would buy ingredients, go into my kitchen, and I would practice every single day. I was determined to stop feeding my body toxic foods. I stopped giving my money to the fast food restaurants and I started spending that money on fruits and vegetables. I had many meals that didn’t taste great at first, but as I continued to practice, I began to learn what tasted good and what tasted not so good. Through my dedication to take care of my body, I started this health, fitness, beauty, and inspirational brand called BeAHealthNutToo. I am now able to share healthy raw food recipes with others because I decided to study, practice, and invest in my health.
I encourage you to also put your knowledge to work! You’ve already taken the first steps to learn how to take care of your body. Show your love for your body by “pumping” it with the highest quality of food, by giving it raw food, the food that cleans.
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Cheers to a healthier you,
LaShana Nicole ❤