The Raw Food Lifestyle

by Yuri Elkaim, BPHE, CK, RHN
Author, Eating for Energy


If you're brand new to raw foods and are wondering what the raw food lifestyle is all about, then you may be surprised to find out that you don't need to radically change your life in order to follow a raw food diet.

In my case, when I started eating raw foods a few years back (80% of my diet was raw foods) nothing really changed in regards to my lifestyle. I was still frequenting the same produce markets, still preparing foods at home, and maybe spending a little less time going out to eat and sipping on cappuccinos. The misconception many people have is that you need to spend hours in the kitchen preparing complex raw food meals that take 24-48 to dehydrate and exotic ingredients that you can rarely find. That's not necessarily true, although many hardcore raw foodists propose meals that are anything but sustainable to the newbie raw foodist.

For me, eating more raw foods is simply a matter of making better decisions. It's about being prepared with fresh ingredients and experimenting by trying new and exciting raw recipes that you may not be used to. Most often, these "foreign" recipes end up astonishing your tastebuds and keep you coming back for more.

The other beautiful thing about eating more raw foods is that they give so much more energy, vitality, and clarity of mind that you just function so much better. Why on earth would you want to go back to eating how you used to when you know the good you're doing for your body with a raw foods diet?


The Secrets to Making a Raw Food Diet Work For You

  • Commit to nourishing your body with the healthiest foods and don't settle for foods that rob your body of energy and keep you fat. This includes limiting or avoiding the traditional "staple" foods of the western diet which include wheat, dairy, meat, and processed foods. Now don't get me wrong, it may be tough at first to remove these foods since you've been brought up on them your entire your life, but your willpower must exceed your temptations. Being strong of mind and determined to live your healthiest life will pervail all the time. Just remember, nothing tastes as good as energetic feels!
  • Believe that you deserve and are "entitled" to feel energetic, be healthy, and have a beautiful fit body. This is a big one. Many people sabotage any progress they make because subconsciously they believe that they are not deserving of this new-found health or body. This is simply a result of past conditioning and unfortunately these beliefs will hold you back unless you acknowledge that your body is the only one you've got and it is the most wonderful high performance vehicle that was ever created. What would you fuel a Ferrari with? Only the best fuels, right? The same for you. But believe that you are greater than any sports car and you can only help but to feed yourself the best possible foods.
  • Be prepared. You must have recipes, a good amount of fruits, vegetables, nuts and seeds, and some type of plan that will guide you throughout your day - at least initially. Without some type of meal plan or "road map" you may feel lost and out of ideas for what to make. As a result, you may more easily slip back into old eating habits which is not what we want. So get your hands on a raw food book and start making some of the recipes that intrigue you the most. If all else fails, simply snack on nuts, seeds, and some cut up fruits and veggies throughout the day.
  • Keep it simple and fresh. In my opinion, many raw food recipes are over the top. They are simply not do-able for most people, especially if you don't want to wait 2 days for your dinner. My suggestion is to keep it simple and prepare meals that are fresh and take little time to prepare. Start with fresh salads, green smoothies, and seaweed wraps. Not only do these take literally no time at all to prepare, but they are also fresh and water-rich. As a result, they are less heavy than their nut-based, dehydrated counterparts and will energize your body for so much longer!

At the end of the day, the raw food lifestyle is simply about making a commitment to eating healthier. There's always going to be a compromise in that you'll avoid certain foods but when you think about the health and energy benefits you'll be reaping it should really be a no brainer. But remember, keep it simple at first with easy raw food recipes and you'll find yourself living the raw food lifestyle much more easily!




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