The raw diet explained

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Many health fanatics claim raw is better. A kind of advanced Paleo, it is welcomed by many with food allergies and conditions.

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Bondi Beauty’s Lucy Bortolazzo, breaks it down:

Raw Foodism

We are told time and time again that the more wholesome our diet is, the more nutritious and beneficial it will be for our bodies. What could be more wholesome then dinner straight from your garden with no cooking required.
Raw dieting is a trend that has people raving about the benefits. The health benefits are impossible to overlook, yet how well does raw eating fit into daily life, and how difficult is it to maintain.

The Rules

  1. Do not eat cooked food – food heated to 46 degrees celsius or more is not permitted on a raw diet. For baked goods or to change the texture of fruits a dehydrator is sometimes used.
  2. Choose filtered or distilled water – limit adding as many toxins to your body as possible.
  3. Buy organic – products free from chemical pesticides, herbicides or fertilisers are always going to be better for your body.
  4. Soak Nuts – soaking nuts in distilled water makes them more digestible and removes any bitterness from the nut without roasting them.
  5. Avoid certain foods – such as animal products, including dairy and eggs, most grains are toasted so look for raw oats or raw quinoa. Meaty tasting vegetables such as portabello mushrooms and eggplant can be dehydrated and used as a substitute on burgers.

The Benefits

  • The raw food diet is based on unrefined, unprocessed foods, which eliminates trans fat and refined sugars.
  • Raw foods contain high levels of healthy fats and fibre.
  • Cooking food diminishes its natural life and energy, and destroys a lot of the nutrients and natural enzymes in the food, which are required by the body to assist in the breaking down of food.
  • Cooking foods can release carcinogens and free radicals that are harmful to our health. Eating raw eliminates this risk.
  • Purchasing local, organic foods helps maintain a sustainable environment.

The Limitations

  • Raw food diets are often low in essential nutrients including; Vitamin B12, Vitamin D, calcium, iron and omega 3 fatty acid.
  • Raw foodists that do choose to eat raw meat and fish put themselves at risk of food poisoning and gastroenteritis. Cooking food kills harmful bacteria which may occur in food.
  • Certain vegetables actually require cooking to release key nutrients. They can also be more gentle on the digestive system than raw foods, which can sometimes prove irritating to the digestive system.
  • It often takes time to adjust to a diet free from sugar and caffeine and for most converts it takes a while to get the necessary energy from other foods.
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Lucy Bortolazzo

CONTRIBUTOR

Lucy is a journalism graduate who feels most at home when wandering the streets of foreign cities. She has a passion for design, travel and everything food, and uses the excuse “I’m curious” to explain just about everything.

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