Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Cool It ! Raw Foods vs Inflammation

A Healthy Lunch—
Tossed Greens with Blueberries

The first week of March I attempted to eat a 100% raw foods diet. My plan is to make a habit of doing this the first week of each month.

At this stage of my health goals, I've been aiming for a daily 50% raw food intake, but I have consistently missed the mark and I wanted to boost myself into a higher percentage somehow. A gradual habit change is the best way I know how to do it.

My 100% RAW week was a success whereby I maintained close to 90% raw! So now I know what it looks like and what I need for next time! Additional planning and building a raw recipe base of excellent choices and tasty dishes will go a long way. (Just so you know, I've been at this healthy change thing for years!)

Though I'm an advocate for adding in high quality, nutrient-dense, living raw foods to my daily intake, I'm not a RAW Foodist at this time (anyone who eats more than 75% uncooked food). And though my meat consumption is very low, and there are a number of things I simply avoid (wheat and most dairy) I still believe that high quality natural meats and animal products can be part of a healthy diet. Going all raw may be ideal for some, but not everyone, and though it has a simplicity, it is not easy to adopt to at first. We are all different and need to research and follow what is best for each of us personally.

You may have heard of the Hallelujah Diet which advocates an 85% raw / 15% cooked food ratio. At the end of this post you'll find a link where you can read testimonies of people who have gotten off of medications and have greatly improved their health and even reversed disease processes. I've known a few personally.

For me, eating more raw foods is a means of decreasing inflammation. I want to cool, or severely slow down, the inflammatory processes that have inhabited my body and caused disease. 

with Guacamole

So, let me ask a simple question . . .

What are some benefits of eating more RAW foods?

  • A raw food diet contains a higher concentration of nutrients, and it is high in fiber and  lower in calories. You can fill up on delicious food and it'll keep you regular!
  • Eating raw alkaline-based foods is a key feature of an anti-cancer diet regimen and a long life. Cooked food = acidity. Raw foods don't disrupt your body's delicate acid/base balance.
  • The more whole raw foods you eat, the less processed ones you'll eat—they fill you up. If eating high energy organic foods, you'll naturally be less hungry due to the more nutrient-dense content, and you'll have more energy to do the things that matter most.
  • A raw plant-based diet may help prevent and treat chronic illnesses. Uncooked foods retain vitamins and all of the enzymes that aid in proper digestion, and leaves the proteins, fats, and carbohydrates intact.
  • Living raw foods are an alternative and sometimes better way to achieve optimal health, when compared to prescription drugs, chemotherapy, radiation, and surgery.
  • Eating raw foods can boost your immune system. Chronic inflammation in the body is a sign that the immune system isn't working properly. 
  • Eating raw foods  and a plant-based diet will treat the cause of inflammation, whereas taking medication does not.
  • Eating a mostly plant-based diet aids mental clarity.
  • Eating raw (non-GMO) foods is the natural way God provided for us to eat. 
Foods that cause inflammation are those high in toxins, artificial ingredients, unhealthy chemicals, poor fats, and undesirable sugars. When cooked foods are eaten, leucocytosis occurs. The white blood count rises (natural immune response). The  standard American diet or a junk food diet leaves our immune system working in overdrive. Trans fatty acids, caramelized carbohydrates, and coagluated amino acids from cooked and poor food choices causes the immune system to treat those substances as foreign invaders. (Heard of leaky gut syndrome or autoimmune disease?)

Tips to adding more raw foods:

Start gradually. Eat something raw with each meal. Or try replacing one meal a day with only raw foods, and work your way up to where you are only eating one cooked meal a day.  Snack on raw foods. Have fun making an awesome raw dessert for your family!

Peruse the Internet. Discover raw food delights you may like and start a recipe collection. There are hundreds of simple recipes you could start with. Green smoothies are a great way to start! Consider purchasing a raw foods recipe book (or two). 

Experiment in the kitchen. Buy a high-powered blender like a Vita-Mix. Ask for a dehydrator for Christmas. Give juicing a try (in a few years from now, I bet a juicer will be a standard kitchen appliance). Treat yourself to the tools that will make a difference for your health.

Keep a check on yourself, and record your body's response. Many arthritis and Fibromyalgia  sufferers see a remarkable improvement pretty quickly. Eating this way will take time getting used to.

Educate yourself. Find out if there is someone in your community giving a raw foods class or if there is a raw foods potluck you can attend. Many health food stores have information on these kind of meetings. I already mentioned the Internet, but it could be helpful to join an on-line raw food, juicing, or green smoothie community like Rawfood Rehab.

The photos featured are of a few simple, thumb's up, 
delicious raw food recipes I made. Click on the links for the recipes.

Raw Apple-Cinnamon Oatmeal 
(Soak in your blender overnight, and enjoy in the morning)

1 cup raw steel cut oats
1 apple chopped
1 1/2 cup pure water
1 Tbsp. organic raisins
Sprinkle of cinnamon

Add all of the above ingredients into your blender to sit overnight. (Add the water first.) In the morning, blend briefly, just until you get an oatmeal-like consistency. Enjoy as is, or warmed slightly.

Sources and Informational Links:
Raw vs Cooked (Dr. Joel Fuhrman)
Hallelujah Diet Testimonies (85% Raw Plant-based Diet)


Linking up with Wellness Wednesdays



  1. Thanks for this information! Both my SIL and I developed thyroid problems in our last pregnancies - we're both trying everything to get healthy! I've heard raw foods are great for restoring thyroid health...it definitely is worth trying!

    1. Hi Jaime! I have Hashimoto's Thyroiditis (just one of my maladies) so it spurs me on my search for good health and healing. I'm headed to your blog post now about healing your thyroid. Thanks for visiting and taking time to comment.

  2. Do you have the cracker recipe on your site (from the one in the picture)? They look so yummy and I've been looking for a good cracker substitute ever since cutting all grains. I found a 100% pure nut cracker at the store, but they are expensive. I'd rather find one I can make at home.

    1. I'm putting the new veggie cracker recipe up today or tomorrow; it's a great tasting snack cracker, so please check back.


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