A personal encounter with the raw food lifestyle.
Everyone knows the old adage that eating an apple a day keeps the doctor away. Would you eat ten? How about ten or fifteen bananas, melons, or heads of lettuce? Most people likely find the idea of eating such large quantities of fruits and vegetables fairly extreme. But when we feel the benefits of eating predominantly raw fruits and vegetables, does the idea of living a raw food lifestyle really seem all that radical?
Flip the coin and think about today’s society and the large amounts of processed foods that we eat and the results from doing so. With unlimited access to packaged convenience foods, many have forgotten what it actually feels like to be nourished and energized from what we eat. A raw food lifestyle is one way to reconnect with nourishment and fulfillment.
With summer in bloom, it’s a great opportunity to fill our bellies with farm fresh seasonal fruits and vegetables like peaches, figs, berries, leafy greens, and more. That’s not to say that just because fresh, raw foods are in abundance you should limit your diet only to them, but it is a good time of year to experiment with including more raw foods into your daily diet.
When first introduced to the idea of a raw food diet eight years ago, I’d spent years suffering from cystic acne, weight gain, lethargy, indigestion, disordered eating, and low self-esteem. It’s safe to say that I ate mostly processed foods, and, even though I was young, my lifestyle was catching up and I was desperate to find a solution to my health problems.
Researching a raw food lifestyle, I was blown away by the simplicity of eating fresh, unprocessed foods in their whole state—as nature intended. What a concept! I devoured every article, video, and recipe that I could get my hands on.
Even though I was enthusiastic about changing my diet, it didn’t take long to realize that the raw food lifestyle isn’t your average diet. Eating this way requires an equal blend of inspiration and motivation.
Eating a diet of unprocessed foods that are free from animal products and artificial chemicals is a little tricky with busy schedules and all that convenient food waiting to be grabbed off the shelf and ready to save the day in minutes.
While it’s easy to be swayed by the thought of less time in the kitchen after an already hectic day, it’s worth it to live and eat raw. It’s completely changed my life. I evolved from an inflated, sick, and lethargic human reliant on medication, to one who wakes up each day with abundant energy, health, and happiness without restriction in her diet.
I’ve since taken my raw food lifestyle experience around the world campaigning with Sea Shepherd Conservation Society, and I’ve maintained a raw foods lifestyle for the past six years both on the road and at home on Vancouver Island. I’ve also had the immense privilege of inspiring others through raw food videos, coaching, and speaking events.
Does it take determination to be able to live this way? Absolutely. To eat raw food requires a dedication to health and wellness, and a little creativity too. But, after years of maintaining a raw food lifestyle and feeling so alive and vibrant, I wouldn’t have it any other way.