Keeping it real with the raw food diet
We’re hell-bent on ditching unnecessary packaging and questioning what goes into our food, so it’s no surprise the uber-pure raw food diet is gaining momentum.
Developed in Switzerland in the late 19th Century, it’s centred around the apparent benefits of consuming only uncooked and unprocessed foods, which include clearer skin and increased energy levels. But before you embark on a new way of eating, you may want to consider the essential raw data…
THE BARE ESSENTIALS
Discovered by Swiss physician Maximilian Bircher-Benner, to eat the ‘raw way’, your diet should consist mostly of unprocessed foods so you’ll need copious supplies of fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds and grains. Some people even decide to take it one step further, choosing to eat raw eggs, meat and fish, too.
To meet the stipulated guidelines of ‘raw eating’, nothing can be heated above 46 degrees Celsius, so dust off your blenders, food processors and dehydrators as they are the main tools you’ll need to prepare raw foods
KEEPING IT REAL
The raw diet belief is heating food destroys its nutrients and natural enzymes, which is disastrous as they are essential in fighting chronic disease and
boosting digestion. In simpler terms, you’re likely to have better general health if you keep your food away from the oven.
As Robert Ross, founder of the website rawfoodlife.com says, “Before discovering fire, we thrived on fresh, raw, live foods in their whole unadulterated state. Cooking allowed humans to expand across the world, but we paid for that with shorter lifespans and disease”
THE NAKED TRUTH
The general consensus is that while those following a raw food diet benefit from the high intake of nutrients and fibre, there isn’t a lot of science to back up the idea those of us who heat our food lack key nutrients and enzymes. In fact, research has made it evident the cooking process is pivotal in increasing the availability of certain nutrients and antioxidants.
Essentially, the lack of protein and calories makes it generally unsustainable in the long run, but that doesn’t necessarily mean the odd ‘raw’ meal still isn’t a good idea.