Information on a Healthy Raw Food Diet

The premise is simple; eat nothing that has to be cooked. It takes a lifestyle commitment since going raw takes extensive time, money, and a will to be raw. Many come to this diet with promises of feeling better or being healed of diseases that are due to diet, such as diabetes and high blood pressure. A true raw-vegan diet consists of fruits, nuts, seeds, and vegetables. To be considered a true raw dieter the diet must be at least 75% raw food, with no heating, processed foods, dairy, etc.

Information was scarce on some sites since they only gave enough information to get you to buy a book or supplement. The sites chosen did not require buying their products (though encouraged) and gave ample information to see what their view of raw diet means.

1. Hallelujah Diet (hacres.com) employs the 85/15 plans. It allows for one cooked meal a day preferably in the evening. The rest of the diet is raw foods. It breaks down to 15% max on fruit (including drinks), 15% cooked, and 70% vegetables.
Sample Recipe

Veggie Sandwiches
2 Slices Whole Grain Bread or Pita Pocket
Leaf lettuce or spinach
Slice Tomatoes
Thinly sliced Onions
Sliced Avocado or Sliced Soy Cheese
Grated Carrots
Sliced Cucumbers
Chopped Red Peppers
Any other fresh veggies of your choice may be added.
Add a healthy dressing from the health food store and enjoy. Or mash the avocado and omit the dressing.

Pro: Allows variety, goes through process instead of trying to get you be completely raw from day one. This was the most realistic of all the diets. It incorporates exercise into program. Seems to promote having a healthy lifestyle, as opposed to a quick fix.

Con: online Store items appear high. For example: Barley Max for 8.5 oz can is $34.95; 120 Servings (2 per day) can last for 2 months. This is the replacement if you cannot make your own fruit juice. Green Star Juicer is $514.95. The biggest drawback is the elimination of medical science. Calls it the Biblical diet for healing.
To get complete information about the diet, they want $250 for a course.

2. Alissa Cohen (rawfoodtalk.com)
Good sight for information, recipes, and support. Does the 30-day Raw Challenge with the prize being a book, DVD, and 30 minute consultation.
Pro: Very supportive atmosphere.
Con: Have to take challenge to get real information about the program. She requires 100% raw for the challenge. Wants you to purchase her products to go through the 30-day process ($55).
The one troubling element is the following claim:

No pains no ailments, all sickness & disease are gone. Imagine having boundless energy for every moment of the day with a clear mind & a feeling of inner peace & calm. Imagine that you are in the best shape of your life, with a healthy body, & free of any excess weight. This is all possible with the raw food diet.

Many people have found relief from: Diabetes, Fibromyalgia, Acne, Migraines, Back, neck and joint pain, Asthma, High blood pressure, High cholesterol, Hypoglycemia, Colitis and Diverticulitis, Candida, Arthritis, Serious allergies, Depression, Anxiety and Mood swings, Heartburn, Gas and Bloating, Skin diseases, Obesity, Menopausal symptoms, Chronic fatigue, Cancers and other ailments and diseases simply by following the raw food diet! Alissa Cohen

Sample Recipe not available direct from her, but others in the community.

3. Living-foods (living-foods.com)
This is a good site for information. You can go into overload with all the information available to you. Some of the information does not seem up to date, except the bulletin board and newsletter. There are some member only areas.

Sample Recipe:

Vegetable Kebabs
4 mushrooms
1 zucchini
1/2 cauliflower
1 red bell pepper
2 carrots
1 onion
2 inch piece fresh ginger, peeled
2 cloves garlic
1/2 C Braggs
2 C water
1/2 t cayenne
1 t basil
1 t oregano

Clean and cut first six vegetables into chunks. Blend remaining ingredients and pour over vegetables in bowl. Marinate overnight in refrigerator. Put onto wooden skewers and dehydrate for 24 hours at 105 degrees.

4.Jenny Cornbleet (learnrawfoods.com)
This is a great site for people to get basic information on eating raw. Cornbleet is great about putting up simple recipe’s to get a person started on the raw road. Her approach starts people with a 50% raw approach. She is a fully certified professional raw foods chef and instructor, and is a Master Instructor with the Living Light Culinary Arts Institute. Her recipes are simple and do not require extensive time or equipment.

Sample Recipe
Spinach Apple Soup
Makes 1 �½ cups, 1 serving
Ingredients
�·�½ cup water
�·�½ apple, peeled and chopped
�·2 cups spinach leaves
�·1 tsp lemon juice
�·�½ avocado, chopped
�·dash sea salt
Equipment
�·blender
Ã?·chef’s knife
�·cutting board
�·citrus juicer or reamer
�·measuring cups
�·measuring spoons
�·peeler
�·spatula
Directions
1.Place the water and the apples in a blender. Blend until smooth.
2.Add the spinach and blend.
3.Add the remaining ingredients and blend until smooth.
Store in a sealed container in the refrigerator. Spinach Apple Soup keeps for three days.

Common Issues
B12 deficeincy, protein, iron lacking
Time consuming due to soaking, dehydrating, and juicing.
It is expensive if 100% raw due to the equipment needs and organic only requirement.
Diet is best in warm climates. It is not recommended for cold climates.
Few of the programs had information from medical doctors or nutritionist. People who had health issues at one time and utilized the diet to regain their health developed the information. Alissa Cohoen, raw food talk, seems to be a writer and speaker, but credentials could not be found.
Completely eliminates all meat, processed foods, and dairy products.
Emphasis seems to be on utilizing the diet for weight loss and healing of ailments.

Side effects
Some people experience a detoxification reaction when they start the raw food diet. If their previous diet contained a lot of meat, sugar, and caffeine, mild headaches, nausea, and cravings can occur. Consult a health care practitioner trained in detoxification.

Who should not try the raw food diet?

Children
Pregnant or nursing women
People with anemia
People at risk for osteoporosis

Summary: There is a lot of information available to the seeker, but you should be cautious of who is giving the advice and how closely you follow it. Anything that eliminates sources of vitamins should be used sparing. It would appear that the diet is good for 30 days or less, but over that some might consider going 75% raw to make sure that the correct vitamin intake is there. Further, a doctor or nutritionist should be consulted to assist in your die. Not all diets are for everyone and health issues must be considered. One should be cautious when the authors of this movement all seem to derive income from your use of their products. There is a conflict of interest.
On the plus side, there is benefit to the program for short durations in terms of digestion and weight loss. The Hallelujah Diet seemed to be the only one that recognized the need for exercise along with a balanced diet.

Disclaimer: A Doctor and nutritionist should be consulted before beginning any changes in diet.

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