What’s all the fuss about?
If you’re new to the idea of raw foods and would love to know why I’m so passionate about it, check out my previous posts on raw food and the importance of food in general:
10 Easy and Delicious ways to add more Raw Foods to your Diet
It’s much easier to focus on increasing the amount of ‘good’ food in your diet, rather than trying to avoid the ‘bad’ ones.
I love raw foods because of its simplicity. So here are my top 10 tips to simply add more raw food to your diet:
- Eat fruit or add fruit to your breakfast
- Make yourself a green smoothie – the ultimate fast food
- Add a large salad to your lunch
- Make a juice to snack on to keep hunger away
- Snack on soaked almonds or seeds
- Make a raw soup or green salad smoothie as a starter for your evening meal
- Have a large salad available for sharing for your evening meal
- Sprout your own pulses and seeds to add to salads, soups and rice
- Treat yourself to some raw chocolate
- Collect your favourite recipes and keep them on hand in the kitchen
Top 10 Raw Food Questions
In March I am hosting a free raw foods Q&A call. I have invited people to submit their questions in advance if they wish.
So far here are the most frequently asked questions
- What’s the difference between raw foods and living foods?
- What can you eat on a raw foods diet?
- What are the benefits of eating a raw foods diet?
- Do raw foods have to be organic?
- Is it more expensive to eat raw foods?
- Do I have to be 100% raw to get the benefits?
- Is raw food another fad diet?
- Do I need special equipment to follow a raw foods diet?
- Will I go hungry on a raw foods diet?
- Will I lose weight on a raw foods diet?
These questions and more will be answered on my Raw Foods Q&A
Raw Foods Kitchen Wish List
I love eating a high raw and living foods diet.
One of the ways that I support myself to do this is to have my kitchen set up with the right tools to make the meals I love.
In my kitchen I use the following tools:
- Chopping board
- Sharp knife
- Julienne slicer
- Measuring cups
- High speed blender
- Citrus press
- Food processor
- Trays for sprouting wheatgrass and sunflower greens
- Glass jars for sprouting
- Glass jars for storage
- Nut milk bag
However when I first went raw, I could make amazing dishes with just a few basics:
- Chopping board
- Sharp knife
- Citrus press
I think most of the above can be found in most kitchens already?
My cupboards are also important and as well of lots of fresh fruit and vegetables I always make sure I have the following in:
- Cold pressed oils
- Nuts and seeds
- Nut butters
- Herbs and spices
- Beans and seeds for sprouting (including wheatgrass and unhulled sunflower seeds)
My Favourite thing about Raw Food
I have been eating a high percentage of raw food in my diet for years and its powerful effect on my life still amazes me.
I had been eating a high raw diet for many years without even realising it that it was classed as a ‘diet’…
I have been vegetarian for 20 years (since I was 13 years old); my parents are not even close to eating this way, with a typical attitude of ‘a meal is not a meal without meat’. However my Mum often says to me ‘Oh but I do like vegetarian meals’. As if you have to be vegetarian to eat anything that is not meat, forgetting that vegetables and other non meat products should make up the majority of your diet if you want vibrant health and an active life that radiates with vitality.
I often feel the same way about raw food, it’s not about you only eating 100% raw food (although the results I have experienced are amazing) but it is about increasing the raw in your life.
My favourite thing about raw food is that it is so simple.
It’s so simple to add more raw food into your life.
It’s so simple to prepare delicious raw meals.
Raw food is simple food and not full of artificial colours and flavours.
It’s so simple to go shopping as you can avoid most of the aisles at the supermarket.
What’s your favourite thing about raw food?
Sunflower Greens – A step by step guide to grow your own
Sunflower greens are unhulled sunflower seeds that have been soaked, sprouted and then grown into the baby plants. Whilst sprouts are pre-digested seeds, sunflower greens are a tender baby vegetable. They are rich in chlorophyll, enzymes, vitamins, and proteins.
Sunflower greens are an excellent fresh vegetables and are ideal for use in salads or juices
What you will need
- A jar for soaking
- Fresh clean water
- Seed tray
- Compost or gardening felt
- Unhulled sunflower seed (make sure they’re suitable for human consumption and not just the birds)
Step 1 – Pre Sprout
I would recommend using organic seeds for sprouting to ensure your greens contains the optimum vitamins and minerals that will support your health.
- Measure out your seeds – you will need to estimate how much you will need to fill one layer of seeds on whatever size tray you are using
- Rinse the seeds in clean water, drain and then soak the seeds in a container with about 2-3 times of water
- Soak for about 12 hours, I soak mine overnight
- Rinse and drain and leave the seed to sprout for 1 day
Step 2 – Prepare your tray
- Line the bottom of the tray with unbleached paper towels so that the roots do not protrude at the bottom through the holes in the tray
- Fill the tray with moist organic compost or potting mix to about one and half inch of the tray depth
Option 2 (my preferred option – less mess)
- Line your tray with moistened gardening felt
Step 3 – Planting your seeds
- Lay out the soaked seeds evenly and densely in one layer, on the damp soil/felt in the tray. If you are using soil gently press them into the soil – Ensure that the seeds are not touching each other
- Place your tray under indirect sunlight, your kitchen window sill if perfect – avoid hot direct sunlight
Step 4 – Watering your sunflower greens
- The young shoots need to be watered everyday to keep them moist
- To water, use a spray bottle, adjust for a light-medium spray. Avoid over-watering
Step 5 – Harvesting and storing your sunflower greens
- After about 7 days your greens should have produced two leaves – this means they are ready for harvesting
- Use a scissors and cut the greens just above the seeds, wash and enjoy
- Once cut store in an air tight container in the fridge and they should last for several days
10 Great Reasons to Eat More
I love eating a diet high in raw and living foods, here are my top 10 reasons why you should think about eating more raw and living foods too:
- Eating food as nature intended means that you are not weighed down by junk
- Raw food allows your body to clear away your internal debris
- As within so without – the external debris begins to clear
- Clearing away the debris reveals your true self
- This promotes clarity of thought
- The foundations are created that will encourage your personal development
- Space is created that will allow you to grow and transform
- You will experience increased energy and a deep sense of contentment
- You begin to feel closer and more connected to the natural cycles of life
- You work towards finding your true path and live an authentic life
Back to Basics – Juices
Freshly juiced fruits and vegetables give your body an instant boost of nutrients, enzymes, vitamins and minerals in a form that the body can easily assimilate, absorb and digest.
At the most basic level, juicing allows us to add so many more vegetables to our daily diet, and to up the amount of raw food we consume, giving the body energy and boosting the immune system, whilst supporting the body’s cleansing process.
Why do you want to eat Raw?
There are many reasons to eat a raw food diet. They include the following:
- To become healthier
- To clear/alleviate a particular ailment
- To lose weight
- To feel better – on all levels of your being
- To have more energy
- To create a greater connection to yourself
- To create a greater connection to the world around you
- Raw foods taste great
- You can creative amazing raw food dishes
- To help the environment
- For ethical reasons
It doesn’t matter what your reason for wanting to increase the amount of raw foods in your diet, and percentages are not important, but it is important to understand your reasons why.
When you eat raw, it is like any other lifestyle choice, you will come across obstacles. These obstacles may show up in the form of criticism from others around you, or they may come from within.
However, when you are clear on your why, it is easier to overcome any obstacles that occur.
Back to Basics – Green Smoothies
Green Smoothies are a tasty way to get more fresh fruits and vegetables in to your diet.
When the fruits and vegetables are blended they become easy for your body to digest and for the nutrients to be absorbed. They differ from juices in that the fibre remains part of the smoothie.
Green is the key for a nutritious and cleansing smoothie as Green vegetables, especially green leafy vegetables, contain lots of chlorophyll which is incredibly effective in cleansing our bodies. Chlorophyll can help make our bodies strong, detoxify the liver and can purify and help to rebuild our blood cells.