A growing trend among health-conscious individuals is the raw food diet. Dip your toes into raw food cooking with one of these recipes.
A growing trend among health-conscious, food-loving individuals is the raw food diet. Now, we’re not talking about “rabbit food” when we say raw food. We’re referring to the method of preparing tasty, creative, often ethnic-inspired dishes, without heating anything above 115 F (46 C).
The main staples of a raw food diet include vegetables and fruits (75 percent, in fact) as well as seaweed, sprouts, sprouted seeds, nuts, legumes, whole grains, and dried fruits. Further, alcohol, refined sugars, and tobacco are big no-nos in a raw foods diet.
Most raw foodies are also vegans, consuming no animal products whatsoever. However, some who follow a raw food diet may also consume raw, unpasteurized milk and cheese.
Benefits of a raw food diet
While minimal scientific research regarding a raw foods diet exists, much research has been conducted about the benefits of vegetarian and vegan diets. For example, a plant-based diet has been suggested to reduce the risk of obesity, heart disease, high blood pressure, type 2 diabetes, renal disease, and even some types of cancer.
Further, recent studies have cited the benefits of eating specific raw fruits and vegetables. A 2012 study, for example, concluded that consuming high amounts of raw veggies, persimmons, and tangerines may reduce women’s risk of thyroid cancer.
A point for cooking
With all this in mind, there are also benefits to cooking our food, such as killing off bacteria and boosting antioxidant levels, such as with the case of rhubarb and tomatoes. Therefore, a raw food diet may not be for everyone.
However, it’s never a bad idea to increase our intake of fibre-rich fruits and veggies, and incorporating raw food meals into your diet may be just the trick. Plus, keeping things new and fresh in the kitchen is an excellent way to stay on track with a healthy lifestyle and avoid falling into a rut.
Dip your toes into raw food (non)cooking with one of these alive-tested raw food recipes.