American essayist and poet Ralph Waldo Emerson once wrote, “Adopt the pace of nature: her secret is patience.” There are few things more natural than a healthy raw diet, but the thought of starting one can be downright intimidating!
There are so many forms of dieting available to people today, from gluten free diets that avoid foods and other products containing gluten to ketogenic diets which has proven to stop seizures in children.
A raw food diet is more than a way of eating – it is a way of life that promotes eating uncooked, unprocessed, organic foods whenever possible. While a raw food diet can promote optimal health, many find the restrictions and meal planning tedious.
Something to consider is that consuming raw foods promotes good digestion, because you haven’t cooked off all the benefits of natural enzymes. However some foods become more nutritious when cooked so it is important to know the difference between the two (http://nutritionfacts.org/).
Tips for Starting Your New, Healthier Eating Plan
Starting a raw diet doesn’t have to be difficult or intimidating. The biggest mistake people make is making an overnight switch. Taking things one step at a time is much easier when switching over to a raw diet. Here are a few tips to get you started.
- Inform yourself – If you know exactly what a raw diet is, then it eliminates the mystery and unanswered questions you have about the lifestyle. In addition to talking to others who follow a raw diet, ask your doctor for advice, too.
- Join a group – Most things are easier done with a group of people, from quitting an addiction like smoking to maintaining a healthy life change, such as going on a diet. Eating raw food with the support of others is easier than going it alone.
- Start small – Don’t try to quit eating your normal diet cold turkey, because you’ll only crave those non-raw foods more than ever! Start by replacing one meal a day, like breakfast or lunch. Once you adjust to that, replace another meal, and then another.
- Update kitchen appliances – Keeping your kitchen appliances running smoothly will help you eat raw. Out of date equipment might hinder your progress into switching over to a raw lifestyle.
- Buy groceries intelligently – Know what you want before you go into the store. Don’t shop mindlessly, because that may lead you to make purchases that don’t follow your raw diet. Also avoid the temptation to use coupons on non-raw food products.
- Know which foods are raw – This is part of buying groceries intelligently. If you are unaware if a food is considered raw, then research it! And always read the labels of products you buy before shelling out your hard-earned money for them.
- Store raw foods properly – You don’t want raw foods to spoil, just like any other kind of food. This is where being part of a group comes in handy because you can learn from the mistakes others made when starting out on their journey to a raw food lifestyle.
Supplementing Raw Foods with Protein
Following a well-balanced diet is crucial when you are eating raw. A healthy raw diet should provide you with all the vitamins and nutrients that you need. While it may be tempting to skip some foods, keep in mind that staying healthy is a higher priority.
Exercise is another high priority. If you are eating raw, then it is still so important to give your body the exercise it needs. Without exercise, your metabolism slows down, your heart weakens, and your lungs can’t send oxygen out to other parts of your body.
After a workout, I enjoy a protein shake to help my body recover faster. Thanks to Garden of Life Perfect Food RAW protein powder, I can still enjoy those shakes without sacrificing my raw diet. Made from 35 raw, organically grown greens, it is chock full of healthy goodness.
Another thing that helped me get started on my raw diet was a cookbook titled Living in the Raw Gourmet by Rose Lee Calabro. It has everything from ethnic dishes to desserts, and offers tips for cooking meals my whole family enjoys.
Whether you are kick starting a new diet and want to check out the recipes in the book or are looking for ways to stay raw after a workout, the Live Super Foods website has everything you need to stay on the raw road to optimal health.