Eating Raw Food – 4 Things You Should Know

A raw food diet is simply eating raw uncooked and unprocessed foods. There are numerous benefits to starting a living food diet, which include an increase in energy, promotion of weight loss, improved colon health and easier digestion. To get started there are a few things you should know.

Eat Organic

Eating raw food is a lifestyle change that takes discipline and motivation to continue. To receive the maximum benefits of the diet it is recommended that you eat organic foods. Organic fruits and vegetables are free of pesticides and harmful chemicals and hormones that are used to promote rapid growth. Without those chemicals foods maintain their natural state and are much healthier as a result.

Food Preparation

The foods that are eaten in the raw food diet are primarily fruits, vegetables, whole grains, beans, coconut milk and pure drinking water to name a few. Most of these foods can be put into salad or made into fruit and vegetable juice. To add a little texture the foods can be steamed for a small amount of time. Try to avoid preparing foods with heat exceeding 116 degrees as it removes natural enzymes in the food that are good for digestion and vitamin sources. A juicer is also a good way to get your daily source of nutrition while combining fruits and vegetables for a pleasant tasting drink.

Balance your Vitamins

Though there are plenty of reasons to increase the amount of raw fruits and vegetables in your diet you still have to be cautious. There will be an increase in overall health but a few important vitamins and minerals will be missing from your diet such as calcium, calories and protein, which are all important for your health. Fruits and vegetables have considerably less calories than other foods so there will be a need to eat more to meet daily limits. You can also take calcium supplements to get the daily-recommended amount.

Shopping for Raw Food

Regular grocery stores are a good place to start shopping for raw fruits and vegetables however; raw food stores cater specifically to organic whole foods. They also have a larger selection of foods that are essential to a living food diet such as legumes, seeds, fiber and whole grains that are in limited supply at grocery stores. You can also buy your whole foods in bulk or as needed without worrying about the item being out of stock.

Frequently Asked Raw Food Diets Questions

What is the detox process and how bad is it?

The detox process will vary for everybody, but usually in the worst cases it is not that bad. If you had been eating an unhealthy diet, there are a lot of harmful toxins and chemicals that need to be expelled.

When this occurs you may experience some symptoms like headaches, slight dizziness, coughing, diarrhea, and skin rashes. These are nothing to be alarmed about and last only a few days. But once you are rid of these symptoms, you'll be all the better for it and notice it in the way you look and feel.

How much raw uncooked food do I have to eat for my diet to be considered healthy?

To be considered on the raw vegan diet, at least 75% of the food you eat should be raw. But you don't need to eat that much raw to begin with. Just gradually substitute cooked and processed foods for raw foods gradually and increase the ratio. You'll get the benefits of raw foods along the way.

Should I Refrigerate My Food?

For packaged food, optimal storage instructions should be included on the packaging. For fresh produce, ideally you should store them at room temperature until fully ripe. Once ripe, you can store fruits and vegetables in the refrigerator but at temperatures that are not too cold (above 52 degrees F).

Can I eat out on a raw foods diet?

Well with most restaurants you are currently limited to salads if you want to eat out and stay raw. So if you are used to eating out a bit, you'll probably want to stick with salads, but usually most restaurants do a good job with them, excluding the dressings. However there are more places that cater to raw enthusiasts starting to pop up. You can find a raw food listings directory at rawfoodinfo.com. It looks like it is still in development, so hopefully they will have something in your area.

What's the best way to find other raw eaters / vegans in my area?

Being raw can be much easier in conjunction with others than by yourself. You can look for raw vegan forums online – a popular one is rawfoodtalk.com, and see if there are members in your area. Also you can use social networking sites like Facebook, which has tons of groups that are based on certain interests, and meetup.com, where you can find local raw food events.

What are some good sources of information for raw food diets and vegan raw diets?

The Advantages of a Raw Food Diet

Raw foodists are people who consume a raw food diet. Most of the time these folks undertake this style of eating to enjoy better health, and their diet consists mainly of natural foods that have not been heated, cooked, pasteurized or processed. Raw food that is grown organically is also very important to this way of eating. For many, this is considered a lifestyle choice that is known as living raw or raw foodism.

There are some variations that people decide to follow with a "go raw" diet, depending on their lifestyle choices and the overall results they are attempting to achieve. The living raw food diets include a wide variety of different raw edibles including vegetables, fruits, nuts, seeds, sprouts from seeds and from whole grain berries.

There is a common misconception that everyone who follows a raw meal eating plan is either vegetarian or vegan. But a raw food diet in general is not that narrowly defined and can include dairy products that have not gone through the pasteurization process, as well as eggs, fish and some meats.

However, those who do want to eat raw vegan or raw vegetarian diets would simply follow their normal food selections, but would make sure not to cook their food. Because of this flexibility, just about any lifestyle can incorporate a diet of eating raw food.

Overall, raw foodists believe that the higher percentage of raw foods eaten, the better. There are many studies and also anecdotal reports that support the premise that the greater the ratio of raw foods to cooked foods in the diet, the greater the benefits to a person's state of health.

Many active members of this type of diet community also are quick to claim that eating food raw will help people to lose weight and help to regulate a healthy weight level. There are also many recorded instances of people recovering from a wide range of illnesses, sickness and even chronic diseases after making the change to a diet that is focused on living foods.

Many people have experienced significant turnarounds in their health with the raw meal diet and they say that living raw is the only way to go. Many claim it has kept them alive and thriving.

More and more experts in the field of health and nutrition are advocating eating raw meal on a regular basis because of the many benefits people have experienced, and also because of the potential for preventing illness and disease.

Throughout the decades of debate and discussion regarding the value and benefits of a raw meal diet, there have been many experts in the field of nutrition that have stepped forward to illuminate why it is that raw foods can be so beneficial. One of the main reasons is that when natural, uncooked food is properly chewed there are many natural enzymes released. The enzymes improve digestion and help to assure that the nutrients in the foods are assimilated by the body.

An Introduction to Low Carb Diets

Low carbohydrate (or low carb) diet plans have really increased in popularity in the last ten years or so. This is in large part due to the success of the ever-popular Atkins diet and the low carb diets that followed it such as the South Beach diet. But you don't need the latest book or high priced diet program to follow a low carb diet. All you need is some basic dieting knowledge and one of the many low carb free diet plans that can be found on the web.

Low carb diets are typically low in carbohydrates (duh!) And high in fats and proteins. How low the carbs are supposed to be depends on the particular diet plan. Typically, low carb diet plans start you off for a week or two of very low carbs. Meals typically consist of meat (lots of meat!) And vegetables with some zero carb sauces or dressings; no dairy, grains, or fruit allowed. Then certain carbs are slowly added to the meals but never at a high percentage. Typically, carbs will account for 5% – 20% of your calories on a low carb diet.

Why low carbs? When you eat carbohydrates it raises your blood sugar level. This in turn causes your body to release insulin. It is insulin's job to get that sugar (glucose) out of the bloodstream and into your cells. First it tries putting glucose into muscles and when the muscles are full of glucose insulin pumps the remaining glucose into fat cells. While the insulin is doing its work your body will burn the glucose in your bloodstream first before trying to burn your fat. So, if you can keep the glucose level low in the bloodstream, insulin won't put that glucose in your fat cells and the body has very little glucose in the bloodstream to use for energy. Therefore, the body must use something else, like fat, to burn for energy. This is the theory behind low carb dieting.

So now that you know the basics of low carb diets you know what to look for when searching for free low carb diet plans on the web or diet books in the bookstore. The low carb diet plan should steer you far away from starchy carbs like white bread, white rice, and pasta and encourage you to eat leafy green vegetables to get the fiber, vitamins, and minerals your body needs without spiking the glucose levels.

One final thing to take into consideration is that a low carb diet totally goes against the USDA's food pyramid guidelines. Although low carb diet plans are popular modern science has not determined whether they are healthy or not. There are issues with the increased levels of fat consumption (particularly saturated fat consumption) and it's effect on cholesterol in a low carb diet. You should do the research and check with your doctor to see if low carb diets are right for you.

Can A Raw Food Diet Help You Lose Weight?

While raw foods are not new, the focus on eating plans that focus on them are and this trend in healthy eating appears to be gaining strength across the country. The focus of the diet is on eating uncooked, highly nutritious foods – fruits and vegetables. Of course, these foods are low in calories and extremely good for you, but eating them raw or uncooked is favored as it is believed that they lose nutritional value when cooked.

Those who subscribe to the raw food diet eat fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, and legumes. They drink unpasteurized milk, water, juice, and tea. It is a revolutionary way to eat, but also a natural way and many of those who follow this way of eating say it keeps them thin and healthy.

However, while the raw food diet is rich in some nutrients, it lacks others. Although fruits and vegetables do have some protein and calcium, this diet may be lacking in these things. Experts are torn on whether it is healthy as a long term way of eating.

Another thing to consider when taking up a raw food diet is that most of the fruits and vegetables that you see in your supermarket are loaded with pesticides. Therefore, it might be best to consume only organic raw food.

If you decide a raw food diet is for you, you might consider supplements to compensate for the nutrients this diet is lacking. Some supplements to consider include vitamin B12, copper, zinc, and chromium. Also, proteins from plants do not the same amino acids as animal protein so you'll have to consume a variety of different type sof raw foods in order to remain healthy.

Some medical experts see great benefits in the raw food diet. In addition to enabling weight loss, the diet can ostensibly increase one's metabolism, making calorie burning easier. Some medical experts have also suggested that a raw food diet is a good antidote to eating disorders. In addition, it can help make your immune system stronger, and help the body rid itself of harmful toxins. Some supporters even claim that eating raw foods improves the look of their skin.

A raw food diet is not recommended for children, women who are pregnant, people suffering from osteoporosis, and those who are anemic. If you try a raw food diet, you should to plan your meals in advance to insure that you are receiving the maximum amount of nutrients. Also, it can be time consuming to prepare all the foods you need so make sure that you set aside the time to chop, blend and puree for each meal every day.

How To Start A Vegan Diet – Without Losing Your Mind

Thinking about starting a vegan diet but not sure where to begin? A Vegan-based diet means that you don’t eat animal products – meat, dairy, fish and even eggs.

For many people however, the thought of cutting out all dairy and meat can definitely be overwhelming – especially if you like to eat out and you’re not a genius in the kitchen.

One option that works for many people is to start gradually. The following 8 tips will make the transition easier and smoother – so you’re more likely to stick with the change:

1. Start with Cutting out Red Meat

The first step needs to be fairly easy. And for many people that starts with cutting red meat (we’re not as attached to it as we are to our cheese it seems).

Start by cutting out all pork, beef, lamb, and other red meat from your diet. Still allow yourself white meat like fish, chicken, and seafood.

You can also start trying meat-free versions of bacon and other meats that you can find in your local grocery or health food store, just to see which versions you like. When you begin feeling comfortable from not eating red meat, you can move to the next stage.

2. Chop the Chicken

Cut out the chicken – but still include seafood and fish like tuna, salmon, shrimp etc.

You can also start to try preparing some vegan meal recipes (you can find a lot online – and many times they are also reviewed by other vegans – so you can find the ones that REALLY taste good).

3. Cut out Seafood and Fish

By now, you’re pretty much at the vegetarian stage – congratulations! Now it’s time to cut the seafood and fish – but keep testing out other meat-alternatives like soy-based patties etc.

Your protein will also be coming from legumes such as lentils, chickpeas and black beans. There’s also whole grains, vegetarian mince, vegetarian patties, some other meat-free products like the vegan bacon.

4. Bid Farewell to Cheese

OK, this might be the more painful part for many of us. We love our cheese. But there are cheese alternatives like rice cheese and soy cheese. You’ll have to experiment here to find which kind of cheese works for you.

For example, I can’t stand soy cheese – but there’s a rice-based cheese I can buy at my grocery store that is fantastic – it even melts like real cheese!

5. Eliminate Eggs

This may also be a bit challenging – mainly because eggs are used in a lot of baked products and recipes.

But there are lots of egg-alternatives you can use in baking your goodies. Some people use gelatin-water mixes (which are OK for recipes using less than 3 eggs).

Other options include apple sauce and egg-replacement powders that you can often find at many specialty health food stores.

6. Cut out Cream and Butter

Again, this can be challenging since cream is often used in coffee – and butter is often used in recipes for baked goods.

But the good news is that there are great vegan alternatives. Coconut oil is an excellent replacement for butter in recipes (it’s basically a 1:1 replacement ratio). You can also use olive oil if you’re cooking dinner meals like stir-fry dishes.

And for cream there are some excellent non-dairy creamer-alternatives like soy milk, coconut milk (very thick and creamy) or even coconut butter.

Look around your grocery store as there are specially formulated non-dairy creamer options in the health food section. (Sometimes regular coconut milk or almond milk will separate in your coffee – these creamers won’t separate in your coffee).

7. Letting Go of Milk

This may seem hard – but you have a LOT of options here so it’s really not that bad (I actually found cheese to be much harder!).

Vegan alternatives to milk include rice milk, soy milk, coconut milk and nut milks like almond or cashew milk.

You can also use these milks to bake or cook with, eat them with your cereal, or you can simply drink them from a glass.

8. Finding The Best Vegan Recipes – and Restaurants

Good news – you are now completely vegan. But you still have to live your life without being chanined to your kitchen.

And you need to maintain a social life – which means eating out!

Now it’s time to start finding more recipes that you love (so you can make them up to have on hand throughout the week). I usually pick one day like a Sunday and make all of my food for the week, freezing the meals that will be used towards the end of the week.

Also, start investigating what you can have at restaurants. Depending on your area, you may actually find a vegan restaurant or cafe.

Not sure what you can eat at a certain restaurant? Most places have their menus online so you can look up what’s on the menu. You can also call ahead and ask what they might have that you could eat. Many restaurants are more than accommodating if you give them a heads up (they want your business after all).

So those are 8 steps on how to start a vegan diet without losing your mind. Some people like to go gradually.

However if you prefer to jump in with both feet, another option is to use a vegan meal delivery service for a month or two. This will assure that you’ll eat delicious food (so the transition won’t be so hard) and you can slowly learn the lifestyle at your own pace.

Going vegan can be challenging – but there are ways you can make it a lot easier. Hopefully these tips have helped. Before long you’ll be feeling healthier and stronger! Good luck and here’s to your health!

How to Change to Raw Food for Dogs

Changing a pet's diet can be a challenging job, especially since most animals always want to eat the same type of food they're taught to eat. Ideally, a dog should be given raw (or mostly raw) meals from puphood, yet unfortunately, most raw foodists only acknowledge the benefits of the raw diet when they are well into their adulthood, and they often find themselves wishing to switch their pets to this type of diet as well.

Luckily, dogs are naturally inclined to eat meat or meat-based meals, so putting your dog on a healthy meat-based raw diet, the way nature intended, should actually be easier than teaching your dog to consume canned or dry dog ​​food. However, a few things should be considered before making the change. One of them is that adult dogs, which have been on a specific diet for a long time, will likely experience gastrointestinal disturbances from any diet change. This doesn't occur because the new food is bad for them, but because their intestinal environment is adapted to only a narrow range of foods. Keeping your dog's diet varied is also known to help prevent dog food induced allergies, which can be quite uncomfortable for both the pet and the owner.

There are two main approaches to changing your dog's diet: you can either go cold turkey, or you can opt for gradual change, which is sometimes refereed to as the "pension method". Going cold turkey is highly unrecommended, and, while a small number of dogs may actually respond positively to this method, most dogs will not. Your best bet is to go with a gradual transition to raw, which can take up to two weeks. This will allow the dog's intestinal flora to adapt to the new food, without stressing it. You can start by mixing raw food in with the dog's regular food, continuously increasing the amount of new food added, and decreasing the amount of old food. In 7 to 14 days, depending on how sensitive it is, your dog should be on a fully raw diet.

Another interesting method for transitioning to a raw dog food diet is known as "the milestone method". While this 7 day method is not always necessary, it can make the world of difference for dogs that have really sensitive digestive systems. It consists of feeding your dog small portions of unwashed dirty paunch over a period of 5 days, then mixing the new raw food with the paunch on the 6th day, and finally feeding the dog only raw food on the 7th day. The dirty paunch provides all the necessary gut bacteria that will assist with the digestion of the new raw food, and will also fortify the dogs immune system to protect against disease.

If given a choice, most young dogs will go for real meat meals rather than canned or dried foods that look and smell nothing like the things they are naturally meant to eat. You can try giving your dog small raw treats in-between meals, to encourage it to consume more raw food. It is also important to get a general idea of ​​what raw foodism is for dogs, and how you can approach such a diet in a way that is advantageous for your dog. Some nutritionists believe that dogs should be given meat based meals that are enriched with different fruits and vegetables, others advocate that dogs are exclusive meat eaters, and a smaller number of people believe that it is better to go 100% vegan, in addition to raw . Being fully aware of your dog's dietary requirements and overall health condition are important factors that should influence your approach to the raw diet.

An Effective Seven Day Diet Plan for Weight Loss

When asked about the one thing that people would like to change about their physical appearance, the most common answer would be to get a slimmer physique or to loose unwanted weight. People are generally very conscious of the extra pounds that they carry and since no one likes being fat, following some sort of crash dieting to get back to shape seems to be the only option.

An effective seven day diet plan is something that might seem apt here because it works wonders in affecting weight loss. It allows one to loose 10-15 pounds every week when followed properly. In addition to this, it also uplifts the spirit of a person by means of its systematic cleansing effects. On day 1 of the dieting week, one should eat only fruits for all three meals. Keep in mind that banana is an exception while all members of the melon family like watermelon or cantaloupe are recommended.

For Day 2 of the dieting week, one can consume only vegetables throughout the day. One can have any vegetable apart from potato. It is alright to stuff yourself until you are full and as long as you are boiling the vegetables, it is completely fine. You can also eat the vegetables raw but using oil while cooking is strictly prohibited. Day 3 is a combination of the food for Day 1 and Day 2, meaning one can have a combination of boiled/raw vegetables and fruits with the exceptions of bananas and potatoes.

Day 4 is basically a liquid diet, one should consume only bananas and milk. On an average, people consume about eight bananas and three glasses of milk on Day 3. One can also have a bowl of vegetable soup minus the fats or grease. Next is day 5 when one can indulge because the menu comprises of a cup of rice and six whole tomatoes. It is also important to drink lots of water on this day as it would flush out the excess uric acid produced by the body.

The sixth day would permit consumption of vegetables along with one cup of rice. As far as Day 7 is concerned, one should consume one cup of rice, boiled/raw vegetables and fruit juice. When the dieter wakes up the next morning, i.e. on the eight day, he/she would be about 10-15 pounds lighter. This dieting cycle can be repeated as often as one wishes but it would be advisable to keep a gap of 3-4 days between the repetitions.

Paleo Weight Loss – How Protein Is The Key

Are you ready to get started on the Paleo diet and are asking yourself if you can actually lose weight? Let's take a closer look at Paleo weight loss then!

The Paleo diet is one of the fastest growing lifestyle changes people from all over the world are making. I'm sure you have seen it getting talked about everywhere from every day people to infomercials to celebrities!

The changes to people lives that the Paleo lifestyle can make is amazing and for that very reason, the Paleo diet eating plan is one of the hottest lifestyle changes doing the rounds! And it comes as no surprise looking at the normal diet of folks today! Paleo converts are saying just how much more energy they have, increased mental clarity and indeed the great benefits created by Paleo weight loss!

What's also fantastic about living the Paleo way of life is that there really isn't as many changes one must make as people think! It's not crazy, hard to eat or make food and killing yourself in the gym!

So if you are sick of busting your hump with the merry go round of harsh limiting diets, why not try the Paleo diet? Most diets fail because there are way too many changes and a lot of physical activity demands. Sadly, 90% of people on a new diet or exercise regime quit within three short months. That is because the changes are not sustainable. With the change to Paleo, make a few significant changes to your eating integrated with some regular exercise and you too can start to feel better and enjoy some motivational Paleo weight loss.

How is the Paleo Diet any different?

Well, first up is that it is easy to stick with and as paleolithic nutrition addresses different areas to most diets, the weight loss you will see is also different … and quick to see!

Protein, the key to Paleo weight loss …

Your body doesn't simply want protein … it NEEDS it and the Paleo is perfect for intensifying protein in your body. Protein is not only an essential for weight loss but also helps with the food and snack factor as you will feel fuller for much longer!

This is very important because once you are feeling fuller and more satiated, you just won't be tempted as much to grab the closest and quickest snack. And all of us know where that normally leads … fast food, chips, chocolate or something else unhealthy!

Paleo weight loss and protein also works together due to the fact that the protein helps your body to burn stored fat cells. Your body is built to work out how to break down all the food it consumes. This is especially so with junk food and processed food. By eating a lot of natural protein, the body will actually start to work on breaking down stored fat cells instead!

Paleo Weight Loss and Exercise

Now let's be real. I would love to tell you that you can lose weight by just nutrition alone. And honestly, some people actually can! That being said, for most of us and also to get the full benefits of all the protein and good stuff the Paleo diet gives you, you will need to get some regular exercise. The good thing is that it's nothing crazy or demanding and as you will already be starting to feel better, you will actually enjoy and look forward to exercise a lot more!

Weight training on the Paleo is amazing and will give you awesome results with all that extra protein and reduced intake of rubbish, unnatural food. However just simple exercise like regular walking and jogging, team or individual sports, or even yoga or Pilates will supercharge your Paleo weight loss!

After all, your body is already burning fat with the changes you have made with your protein intake. Why not add a little exercise to really pack some punch !?

Similar to anything good in life, the Paleo diet will take some commitment to secure the results you want. The benefits you will receive however will greatly outweigh any question marks you may have over your ability to execute this.

Here's to you and your increased health, vitality and of course, Paleo weight loss!