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FullyRaw means feeling good enough about YOUR perfect health enough to WANT to share the gift of life/health with others. Everyone knows how it feels to be unhealthy.
At this moment in time, you may be searching for health inspiration rather than giving it.
The best way that I know how to describe what someone feels like when they go “FullyRaw” or adapt to a 100% raw foods lifestyle is that they simply want to jump on top of the world and yell, “I am free! I found happiness!”
This is what it means to be FullyRaw. You want to give inspiration rather than search for it.
A raw foods diet is made up of fresh, whole, unrefined, living, plant-based foods: fruits, vegetables, leafy greens, nuts, and seeds, which are consumed in their natural state, without cooking or steaming. People who adopt this diet are often referred to as “raw fooders” or “raw vegans.”
No, there are different approaches for eating a raw diet. Most of them are designed to obtain a high percentage of daily calories from fats, by eating significant amounts of avocado, nuts and seeds. These diets tend to be unsustainable since too much fat, even raw fat, causes health problems and results in the underconsumption of carbohydrates. On the other hand, one cannot eat primarily vegetables as a diet, because they don’t contain enough calories. Therefore, a sustainable raw foods diet draws the great bulk of its daily calories from fruits, which are high in calories, along with liberal amounts of vegetables for their high mineral content, and small amounts of nuts and seeds.
There is no essential nutrient in meat, grains, legumes, or dairy that is not also available in fruits, vegetables, nuts and seeds, and in a form that is easier to digest. Indeed, there are many essential nutrients that can only be gained from plants. People thrive on the raw diet, often telling others how it has improved their health and their lives. Fruits, vegetables, and leafy greens not only contain sustainable amounts of carbohydrates, protein and fat, they have them in the percentages, ratios, and quality that are optimum for human health. When people integrate a proper raw diet with other healthful living practices, they rarely, if ever, develop weight control problems, chronic or even short-term illnesses.
The first benefit is that you stop abusing your body each meal with toxic residue that it must deal with, leaving it free to cleanse and heal itself. Next, the proper raw diet eliminates constipation, and the transit time of waste matter shortens to 24 hours or less, avoiding the buildup of toxemia from the recycling of toxins from the colon. Most people on the standard American diet experience transit times of 72 hours or more during which time their food ferments and putrefies. The resulting foul gas and unpleasant smelling feces highlights the fact of fermentation and putrefaction taking place in the colon.
Applying heat to foods provides no nutritional benefit to the food and is detrimental to the person ingesting the cooked food. There are reported instances where, by heating food, certain nutrients are more easily released, like lycopene from tomatoes. However, this ignores that hundreds of other nutrients in that heated tomato that were damaged or destroyed; and also assumes that more of a specific nutrient is better, instead of trusting that the body has learned to extract just the right amount that it needs for optimal health. Many nutrients are deadly toxic if we overdose on them, more is definitely not always better. Many foods that are cooked would otherwise be unappetizing or inedible to humans, such as meats and grains, thus bypassing sensory safeguards that would normally protect the body from ingestion of unnatural and unhealthy substances. Studies have shown that the immune system often reacts to the introduction of cooked food into the bloodstream the same way it does to foreign pathogens such as bacteria, viruses, and fungi. Cooking food denatures the proteins, carcinogizes the fats, and caramelizes the carbohydrates; most other nutrients are damaged, deranged or destroyed by the heating process, leaving mostly empty calories. The regular consumption of cooked foods results in the detrimental enlargement of the pancreas.
People thought the world was flat for a long time. In order to progress with science, we had to come to grips with the false nature of that paradigm. As humans moved away from the tropics, they began eating the flesh of animals to substitute for missing fruits and vegetables. The farming of grains, the hunting of animals, and civilization’s reliance on eating them cooked, came within the last 10,000 years, the same length of time man has been using fire to prepare food. As such, cooked foods are considered to be a major contributor to what are called the diseases of civilization: cancer, heart disease, and diabetes.
Learning how to eat a raw food diet properly takes time, patience, and effort. Although there is a blueprint for doing it correctly, most people find it challenging to adopt the raw diet 100% the first time out, unless they get professional guidance. It seldom occurs overnight and, in fact, can take years to accomplish. Because our taste buds have experienced the excitement of salt, sugar and spices, we may miss those tastes initially when they are no longer part of the daily diet. However, most people find that the tradeoff for good health and longevity is worth it. Once the taste buds are no longer exposed each day to these “excitotoxins,” they once again develop an appreciation for the taste of sweet, fresh fruits and vegetables.
The best way to begin is by increasing the amount of raw food you eat, while decreasing the amount of cooked food. For example, you can replace cooked grains and milk (cereal, toast, etc.) for breakfast with fruit that is in season, such as melon in summer or grapefruit or oranges in winter. Later, a lunch made up of a sandwich (baked grains) and chips (cooked corn or potatoes) can be replaced with another type of fruit or a banana/berry smoothie. Start the evening meal with fruit, and follow that with as much raw salad as you desire before committing to the cooked portion of dinner. Eventually, you can replace the evening cooked meal with a large salad made up of lots of leafy greens and some non-sweet fruits like tomatoes.
Eating cooked meat creates excess uric acid and ammonia in the body, both of which are toxic to the system. The proteins in cooked food become denatured, and, as a result, the polypeptide bonds cannot be broken down into amino acids. These polypeptides are treated as foreign invaders and must be excreted through the kidneys. The kidneys don’t allow for easy transport of these substances, causing the distress that leads to kidney stones and eventually to kidney failure. Cooked grains cause fermentation in the body that produces gas, alcohol, and acetic acid; protoplasmic poisons that kill every cell with which they come into contact.
No, but it truly aids in your understanding of what you are doing! By eating primarily fruit, vegetables, and leafy greens, your diet is automatically close to the ideal of 80-10-10. However, you may want to use a calculator to determine if you are getting enough calories for the day to meet your basic metabolic and exercise needs. Nutridiary (www.nutridiary.com) and FitDay (www.fitday.com) are two free online resources for analyzing the food you eat to make sure you are getting enough calories per day from raw sources. These resources are especially helpful to the newcomer because it is common to undereat fruit and overeat fatty foods when beginning the raw vegan diet. We recommend that you input your food information into Nutridiary* for at least a week to make sure you have the relevant information about your calories and the caloronutrient breakdown (percentages of calories obtained from carbohydrates, protein and fat.) It is easier to ask for help and advice from others when you can provide this information as part of your question.
In the beginning, most people don’t eat enough raw foods to obtain the necessary daily calories because they are used to eating concentrated cooked foods. You have to eat a larger volume of fruits and vegetables to obtain the same amount of calories that you do from cooked food, because fruits and vegetables are not as calorically dense. They contain a considerable amount of water and fiber, other nutrients that the body needs. Fruits are high in calories, while vegetables and leafy greens are not. So, it makes sense that most of a raw fooder’s diet will be made up of mostly fruit, with large salads regularly to provide balancing minerals, such as sodium, calcium and magnesium. A healthy diet contains approximately 90-97% calories from fruits, 2-6% calories from greens and 0-8% calories from vegetables, non-sweet fruits, nuts and seeds.
Quoting Dr. Doug Graham: “It takes some practice to develop the ability to consume what, from the raw perspective, should be thought of as “normal” amounts of food for a human. Somewhere in between “all you care for” and “all you can” there is a happy medium that will enable you to increase the amount you consume. The stomach is very accommodating in this regard and will stretch quickly to allow you to consume normal/healthy quantities of fruit. At the same time, your image of what is a healthy amount, and your mindset about quantities of fruit will grow to match your ability to eat it.” If you practice eating a meal of just fruit, only fruit, and nothing but fruit, it will get easier and easier to consume appropriate volumes.
The very best quality vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, phytonutrients, enzymes, co-enzymes, fiber, water, protein, carbohydrates, and fats come from fruits and vegetables. They are complete nutritional packages and provide the body with everything it needs to function properly. Of all foods, fruits are richest in vitamins and water, and second richest in minerals and fiber, while vegetables and leafy greens are richest in minerals and fiber, and second richest in vitamins and water. The other two nutrient groups, proteins and fats, are needed in smaller quantities; so, while fruits and vegetables are not high in protein and fat content, they still remain their ideal source. All nutrients come in the proper proportions and ratios that the body can utilize optimally. No man-made vitamin tablet or other supplement can compare with nature’s handiwork. Essentially, fruits supply nutrients in quantities that most closely approximate human nutritional needs and vegetables come in second place.
There is more than enough protein in the raw diet to satisfy your body’s needs in sweet fruit, which averages 4 to 8% of calories from protein, and vegetables and leafy greens, which average 15 to 20% of calories from protein. This is a surprise to most people, who have been taught incorrectly, that they need large amounts of protein to be healthy. Actually, the reverse is true: most people suffer from an overdose of protein each day, and this accounts for a great deal of ill health, such as constipation, leading to toxemia and eventually, cancer. While excess protein consumption is linked to many acidic conditions in the body and resultant diminishing health, there is not even a medical name for the condition of underproteinization. The acidity caused by excess protein consumption must be counterbalanced by the body. It is done by taking the precious alkaline mineral, calcium, from the bloodstream and bones, setting the stage for osteoporosis and tooth decay. It is no coincidence that fruits and vegetables contain just the right amounts of protein to build and maintain the human body.
This question presupposes that grains such as rice, wheat, barley, and oats are helpful to the body’s nutrition. Actually, they are not. The fact that they must be cooked to be edible is the first clue that something is wrong with them. They are bland to the taste and are virtually inedible without salt, spices, and condiments, the deadly “excitotoxins”. Grains are acid forming in a body that needs to be slightly alkaline. Many people have substituted cooked grains in place of meat in their diet, and as a consequence, have shown a marked reduction in cardiovascular disease. However, because cooked grains create a condition known as acid toxemia, these same people will instead, suffer from a higher risk of arthritis and cancer. Cooked grains also contain opioids (which are addictive), cause daily mood swings, and contribute significantly to obesity.
With respect to Dr. Atkins, his thesis missed the mark. His first error was that he failed to distinguish between the two types of carbohydrates: simple and complex. Fruit is a simple carbohydrate from a whole food source, and cooked grains such as bread, rice, pasta, and cereals are complex carbohydrates. Simple carbohydrates are easily digested, and their sugars are readily absorbed by the cells of the body for use as fuel. Complex carbohydrates are more difficult to digest, require substantial amounts of energy in the conversion to sugar, and are denatured by the cooking process, making them difficult for the body to assimilate and creating toxic byproducts. In short, they are fattening and unhealthy. By eliminating nearly all carbohydrates from the diet, Dr. Atkins ensured that the fat villain, complex carbohydrates, would not be available, and the followers of his diet would, in fact, lose weight. The problem however, is that he threw the proverbial baby out with the bath water by removing simple carbohydrates from the diet, as well.
There is no need for supplements if you are eating an adequate raw diet and engaging in frequent vigorous activity. All the vitamins, minerals, and other nutrients the body needs are supplied by eating a variety of fruits, vegetables, and leafy greens. Indeed, most supplements are concentrated from plant foods, and the body does not appreciate these concentrated levels, having to work to expel them similarly to the toxic residue from cooked foods. It is always better to correct the diet than to supplement it. Many people hold the belief that more is better, but actually, supplements do little besides foster nutritional imbalances. That said, in individual cases it may be necessary to supplement the diet nutritionally during the initial phases of lifestyle change rather than risk potential health damage. The health of each individual always takes priority over any philosophical position.
What about candida, diabetes, blood sugar and fruit sugar? Is fruit too hybridized? The process of hybridization is a natural one. There is nothing wrong with hybridization, per se. All plants and animals are hybrids. What humans have done is much the same as nature has done for thousands of years, with one significant difference: Nature created hybrids as a method of survival, while we created hybrids in order to enhance specific tastes or other features. We selected seeds from the best-tasting fruits and planted these instead of the seeds of inferior fruits. The same process of hybridization and seed selection that Nature has always used, man has applied to all vegetables and fruits so that today, all the food that we buy has been hybridized for hundreds of years. Problems arise when fruits are hybridized for purely commercial reasons. For example, many fruits are hybridized simply to make them sweeter, to create a variety with a longer shelf life, or to develop some other marketable quality. The result of this hybridization has often been the creation of fruit of inferior nutritional quality, especially with respect to the sugar-to-mineral ratio. If a fruit is sweeter, this does not make it bad, it just means that we have to eat less of it in order to get the same amount of carbohydrates. If the mineral-to-sugar ratio has been altered in favor of sugar, we can reinstate balance among these nutrients simply by including more young and tender greens in our diet. In the future, we can hope that humanity will come back to its senses and nurture the development of foods for their exceptional taste and nutritional value, rather than for the cosmetic and commercial features currently promoted by market forces.
Before the body’s cells can utilize food for fuel, the food must first be converted into sugar, whether the originating food is carbohydrate, protein, or fat. Carbohydrates are the easiest to convert to useful sugars. Fruits are mostly simple carbohydrates. It is much easier on the digestive system to process fruits for fuel because they are composed primarily of sugars, requiring much less digestive energy, and they come in a complete nutritional package of vitamins, minerals, proteins, and fats. When there are insufficient carbohydrates present to convert to sugar, the body will transform fat and protein into sugar, but at a higher cost: more time and energy spent on digestion with the creation of toxic residues.
If you a person has candida or a yeast infection, how can they eat so much fruit? Excess fat is the culprit in candida, not sugar, per se. When fat levels in the blood rise, so does blood sugar, because excess fat inhibits insulin from performing its function of escorting sugar out of the bloodstream. The excess fat lines the blood vessel walls, the cells, insulin receptor sites, the sugar molecules themselves, and the insulin with a thin coating of fat, thus blocking and inhibiting normal metabolic activity.
Too much sugar in the blood is as life threatening as too little and can result in serious illness or death. Yeast, or candida, is a constant presence in the blood; it serves as a life preservation mechanism, blooming when there is an excess of sugar in the blood stream to bring blood sugar down to a non-threatening level. When the sugar is distributed and used by the cells of the body, the yeast quickly dies off as it is supposed to.
If fat levels stay chronically high due to a poor diet, sugar will remain in the bloodstream and feed the large candida colonies instead of feeding the 18 trillion cells of your body. Starved for fuel, these cells can no longer metabolize energy, and you become tired, and feel rundown. Because all carbohydrate, fat, and protein that we eat is converted to simple sugar (glucose) if it is to be used by the cells for fuel, the way out of this cycle is not to eat less sugar, but to consume less fat. When fat levels drop, the sugar starts to get processed and distributed again, and the yeast levels drop because there is no longer excess sugar available.
With a few exceptions, it is preferable to consume the whole food rather than to extract part of it and drink it. Drinking fruit or carrot juice without the pulp being present to slow the absorption rate of the nutrients can spike the blood sugar and throw your blood chemistry out of balance. It is far better to consume the whole fruit. One exception is fresh-squeezed citrus fruits, since a significant portion of the pulp is generally retained with the juice. The other “exceptions” are to blend fruits such as melons, and to make smoothies out of various fruits like bananas and strawberries. Liquefying the entire fruit in a blender turns it into a juice or a thick smoothie, while keeping the entire nutritional package together. Blending whole tomato, celery and orange together makes a thick, tasty, salad dressing.
I personally never recommend anything to anyone that I would not consume. I personally do not consume oils, condiments (salts, peppers, ketchup, etc.), dried herbs, seaweeds, or and “special” type of exotic supplement that requires packaging. My basic rule is that if it comes in a package, it is most likely not fresh. I prefer to eat the olive as opposed to the olive oil, or I enjoy more the water and filling of a coconut rather than the man-processed product of its oil. Why consume a dried herb when you can eat a fresh one and obtain its fresh juices of life. Fresh is always best!
Organic produce is always to be preferred, but life is full of compromises and choices. It may be better to eat non-organic raw vegetables than to eat cooked or steamed organic vegetables, but it is a difficult choice. The goal of this site is to define the ideal, the target, while encouraging and assisting the reader in vectoring towards those goals. It is better to eat plenty of non-organic fruits and meet your daily caloric requirement than to under eat on insufficient quantities organic fruit and grow weak from lack of adequate nutrition.There are usually more vitamins and minerals in organic produce. It is also true that organic produce has little or no pesticide residue, while non-organic often does; nevertheless, the amounts involved are not usually critical to health, and it is far more consequential to avoid the pathogenic effects from cooked food. To worry about pesticides while eating cooked food is like stepping in front of a moving train to avoid the sting of a bee.
The beans in coffee are cooked, making them non-raw. The fatal dose of caffeine is 10 grams, the amount in approximately 70 cups of coffee. Many people take one tenth of the lethal dose every day. Moreover, caffeine decreases the amount of pepsin in your body, pepsin that is needed for protein digestion. Caffeine is also known to deplete the body of water, calcium, potassium, manganese, and the vitamin B complex. It is ironic that many coffee drinkers on the Standard American Diet (SAD) criticize the raw diet because they believe they would not receive enough protein every day, while their daily intake of coffee blocks the absorption of the very protein they claim they need.
Spices like garlic, onion, curry, cumin, cayenne, chile powder and oregano are common in cooked food. We have a saying in the raw community about this: “If you can’t make a meal of it, it is suspect at best.” So, can you eat a bowl of cumin? Of course not. These spices are referred to as “excito-toxins,” in that they stimulate and excite our taste buds, but deliver no nutritional benefit. In most cases they act as an irritant and cause the body to produce mucous to protect itself from them. In other cases, they disguise the bland or noxious taste of cooked foods to seduce us into consuming foods that would not attract us on their own. Cooked pasta and rice without seasonings, are bland and virtually inedible. Finally, like salt, the spices skew our taste buds away from appreciating the natural taste of fruits and vegetables on their own. The same holds true for condiments such as mustard, ketchup, and mayonnaise.
Dehydrated food is not a whole food; it has had its water taken out. As such, it could never be as good as the whole, fresh food, even if the water is replaced. Some of the nutrients inevitably get damaged in the process of dehydration and rehydration. This becomes a personal decision, but dried foods should always be considered at least a second choice behind fresh, whole, organic, ripe fruits and vegetables. Current research shows that B12 changes to an analog and unusable form where it is found in dehydrated foods.
Some damage to living foods must occur when they are frozen. Cell walls expand, and often burst when frozen, diminishing vitality. However, some foods, like nuts and seeds are designed to survive through cold winters, so these foods are definitely okay to freeze. As for fruits and vegetables, freezing should be used sparingly but not necessarily totally eliminated, as it is often the best way to preserve foods with minimal damage. No known toxins are formed from freezing, as opposed to other forms of preservation. Generally, the lower the water content and the higher the fat content of a whole, fresh food, the better it will take to freezing. At the same time, frozen and ice-cold foods kill the bacteria in the gut that are responsible for the production of vitamin B-12.
Vinegar is diluted acetic acid, commonly known to be a poison in its pure form. Acetic acid stimulates the thyroid gland to pull phosphorous from the adrenal glands to negate the effects of acetic acid in the system. Depleted phosphorous results in impaired function of the adrenal glands and thus the entire endocrine system. The outcome of all this can include body odor, pains in the heart, rapid pulse, increased mucous production, and headaches. Repetitive use will also result in hardening of the liver.
Because they are refined from their original state, oils like olive, canola, sunflower, safflower and coconut are no longer safe to ingest into the body. In their concentrated forms, they are pure fat and large amounts of that fat will be directly absorbed into the bloodstream, adversely affecting the blood viscosity (thickness) and the blood chemistry. However, eating some fresh olives, coconut flesh, or sunflower seeds, in moderation, is not bad for you. These whole foods assuredly contain plenty of fat but it is in a form that is combined with all the essential nutrients designed by nature to accompany that fat.
Extracted sodium chloride, in any form other than the small amounts naturally occurring in whole plant foods, is an irritant and is toxic to the body. It causes a decay of the sense of taste, retards digestion/excretion, and impairs the critical cellular potassium/sodium ratio upsetting our natural water balance. Drinking sea water causes dehydration and results in death in only a few days due to the salt content; extracting the salt from the water and ingesting it leads in the same direction. “You would not drink ocean water, as the salt in it is vile, caustic, irritating and in quantity, deadly, even though it is diluted by a lot of water.
Avocados, nuts and seeds are extremely high in fat content. When it comes to fat, it doesn’t matter so much its origin; fat is fat. Fat goes from the lymph system directly into the blood. Too much fat will thicken the blood, causing the red blood cells to clump together so they cannot deliver oxygen to the cells. Excess fat also blocks the action of insulin in bringing sugars to the cells, which leads to diabetes. It is better to eat small amounts of avocados, nuts and seeds, and not to eat them daily. There is more than adequate fat for the body from fruits, vegetables and leafy greens.
The medical profession and its supporting industry, the patent medicine makers, operate from the theory that there are 400 or so separate illnesses whose symptoms can be treated or suppressed by ingesting synthetic chemical compounds. Our approach is entirely different. Other than a few genetically inherited abnormalities usually arising from generations of poor dietary and lifestyle choices, there is only one illness: toxemia, an uncleanness of the blood and tissues, caused primarily by poor diet and lifestyle. This toxemia, and its concomitant enervation, gets progressively worse over the years, leading to all manner of health problems. In order to “cure” a disease condition, such as diabetes, cancer, or cardiovascular disease, you must eliminate the underlying toxemia of which the “disease” is only a manifestation. With a raw diet, you no longer overload the body daily with toxic residue. The body will begin to clean the blood, tissue and organs of their toxicity, and the medical condition for which you are taking the pharmaceutical medicine will fade away, ultimately removing the need to continue taking the medicine.
Most people report losing weight on the raw diet, if they started with excess. However, there is no set standard on how this works; results are strictly individualized. Some people start losing right away; others take several months before significant weight losses begin. It may prove useful to know that there are three types of weight that can be lost: water, which can represent significant weight loss in a relatively short time; muscle, which occurs through atrophy due to lack of use, generally not attributable to diet; and fat, which is rarely lost at a rate higher than one pound per week. If one were to lose five pounds in a week, it is likely that a maximum of one of the pounds would be fat and the other four or more would be water loss.
Reports range from no gas, to mild gas, to extreme gas depending upon the individual, as he/she transitions to the raw diet. Initially, gas problems may arise from an impaired digestive tract, which holds foods in little pockets of the intestines, where they may ferment or putrefy and cause gas. Over time, this will stop, as the intestines heal. If the gas has an odor, it is generally from the putrefaction of proteins (cooked food residue); if it is odorless, then it is generally from the fermentation of sugar (overeating or high levels of fat in the blood). Long term gas problems on the raw vegan diet are generally correctable by being conscious of proper food combining, limiting fats and by not eating more in one meal than the body can quickly digest at this phase of transition.
Most people experience temporary and generally mild symptoms of detoxification from beginning the raw diet, as the body is no longer being overloaded each day with toxic residue. This is the body being allowed to cleanse and heal itself. The body is wise and will always eliminate toxins in a way that requires the least effort while doing itself the least harm. Detox symptoms that can occur range from tiredness, runny nose, digestive challenges and skin conditions to retracing phenomena, weight loss, drops in blood pressure and other signs that the body is making a healthy adjustment. Each person is unique; therefore, the duration of significant detoxification will vary, based upon health, vitality and environment and the degree of commitment to a healthy lifestyle. It can last from days to years. We must also remember that we are in a constant state of toxifying and detoxifying. We absorb environmental toxins, and the body works to eliminate them. We ingest foods, even the best sort, and the body creates metabolic toxins as a result of its cellular metabolism. Not to worry, however, because we are equipped with an entire eliminative system, composed of kidneys, a liver, lungs, bowels and the skin, to rid ourselves of these toxins.
It is important to understand that foods don’t heal us; the body does all the healing. Foods, cooked or raw, simply supply the materials the body uses in its various functions. However, low fat raw vegan foods provide the widest range of high quality materials and are, therefore, more likely to have the perfect proportion of raw materials needed by the body for healing. Beyond that, no specific raw food is better for “healing” than any other. Each supplies a form of raw material that the body may need and use. Unlike cooked foods, raw foods do this without leaving a toxic residue that can overwhelm the body’s ability to maintain a healthy, balanced state.
FullyRaw means feeling good enough about YOUR perfect health enough to WANT to share the gift of life/health with others. Everyone knows how it feels to be unhealthy. At this moment in time, you may be searching for health inspiration rather than giving it. The best way that I know how to describe what someone feels like when they go “FullyRaw” or adapt to a 100% raw foods lifestyle is that they simply want to jump on top of the world and yell, “I am free! I found happiness!” This is what it means to be FullyRaw. You want to give inspiration rather than search for it.