Staying on a Raw Food Diet in the Winter
Yuri Elkaim, BPHE, CK, RHN
The benefits of a raw food diet are numerous. More energy, weight loss, glowing skin, and amazing health are just a few. You can browse the internet and learn about mind boggling health transformations due to raw foods or simply try it for yourself and notice a profound and immediate difference.
But for some people, eating predominantly raw foods in the winter can be challenging. In the warmer months, it's much easier to stay on course with a raw food diet because living foods are water-rich and don't weigh you down like heavy, cooked foods. In turn, though, many people often resort to these heavy, homey meals to feel warm and satieted during the winter months.
Although there's nothing wrong with eating steamed or cooked veggies during the winter, please bear in mind that much of the nutrient value is dimished and food enzymes destroyed when you heat your foods.
So considering how beneficial it is to eat raw (as much as possible) what are some ways that can help you do so even when the thermometer dips below zero?
Eat Fattier Raw Foods
One of the best tricks to staying raw is simply to eat fattier raw foods. And don't worry, we're talking about healthy fats that your body can actually use - not trans fats and cooking oils. Healthy fats give you a feeling of satiety and can help tie you over so you feel starving throughout the day. This is especially important during the colder months when the body can actually burn more calories simply to stay warm.
Examples of nutritious fatty raw foods include avocados, young coconut meat, durian, cashews, walnuts, sunflower seeds, and ground flaxseeds.
Remember that because these foods are eaten raw, they are inherently abundant in enzymes which will enable better digestion. Furthermore, since these fats have not been heated, they are not rancid. Fats and oils that are used in cooking and heat-processing are one of the most dangerous sources of free radicals in the human body.
No one ever got fat eating raw foods because the body simply knows how to handle fats that in their raw state.
Try this delicious smoothie. It's called Bananamania and is one of my most favourite smoothies of all time. It's also featured in my raw food book.
Stay Warm by Drinking Tea
If you need to turn to foods for warmth, then why not try drinking some herbal tea instead? Green tea is a great option as it has tons of antioxidants. Chamomile tea is great before going to bed as it relaxes your body. Peppermint tea is beneficial for digestion.
Whichever tea you choose just ensure that it's herbal and you're good to go!
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