There are practitioners of alternative medicine who consider the raw food diet as supreme. Raw food doesn’t essentially mean everything is eaten plain raw, cooking within a specified limit is permissible. Roughly, cooking food below 118°F qualifies for the raw diet.
Why consider a raw food diet?
According to the proposers of the diet, majority of the nutrition is destroyed in food, when it is cooked. They also believe that cooked fooddenatures the enzymes produced in the body. Consequently, the body has to do more work to produce optimum amount of enzymes. Whenit is unable to do so, a number of health issues spring up, right from the digestive disorders to faster aging.
Raw broccoli has more sulforaphanes, the cancer fighting substance, than the cooked one. Similarly, folate and vitamin C are destroyed in the process of cooking. Raw food is not only easier and faster to prepare; it is also more nutritious.
What is on the menu?
Fresh fruits and vegetables top the chart in a raw food diet. Other food items include nuts, seeds, sprouts, even raw meat and fish. Although, consuming raw meats may enhance the risk of food related illness.
The beverages usually taken in a raw diet are coconut water, vegetable or fruit juice, herbal or green tea (not heated beyond 118°F) and of course the universal favorite – water.
How food is prepared?
Besides consuming the food raw, one can dehydrate and sprout food items. In case of sprouting; legumes, beans, seeds are soaked overnight in clean water.The water is drained and the contents are kept in a utensil to sprout. Different food items have different time for sprouting, check it and keep them accordingly. Once they have sprouted, rinse them and consume, they may be kept in a fridge for up to five days.
To replicate sun drying a dehydrator is used. Foodstuff is kept in a tray inside a container, a heating element produces heat and a blower spreads it. This method is adopted to make kale chips, sun dried tomatoes, raisins, crackers and more. However, the temperature inside the container remains under 118°F.
Raw food is high in minerals, vitamins, antioxidants, and low in sodium and sugar. They also have less saturated and trans fats. It is claimed that this diet can help keep several dreaded diseases away.