How To Become a Raw Vegan, From Your Diet to Lifestyle
Veganism encompasses a wide range of different diets Some choose to adopt the lifestyle for health related reasons, some choose it for ethical considerations, and others choose it as a form of weight loss. But no matter the reason, every vegan diet ensures you adopt a 100 percent plant-based and cruelty-free lifestyle. There are many people that have chosen to take this to the extreme and are eating a raw vegan diet in which one chooses to only eat unprocessed and uncooked foods, with the belief that plant food in its whole form is the best and most nutritious for your body. There is a lot of controversy surrounding the raw vegan lifestyle for a number of different reasons which we will discuss further in this article, but if it is something you are considering or wanting to know more about, here is all the raw vegan info you need.
What Is Raw Veganism?
While the vegan raw food diet is something new, it has begun to regain its popularity in recent times. This diet is an extreme diet and one that focuses on incorporating one type of food and restricting all others. Just like veganism, it precludes all animal products from one’s diet and only allows for the plant foods eaten to be raw, meaning without having reached a temperature of 104-118 degrees. As a result of this, the diet mostly consists of fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, and legumes and uses many unusual preparation methods such as juicing, blending, soaking, sprouting, and dehydrating. Because the foods eaten within this diet are so low in calories, the meals are often of an extremely high volume and are therefore very rich in fiber. This is important to know, because even though fiber is an important nutrient, it can also cause adverse effects if consumed in excess.
What Is the Difference Between Vegan and Raw Vegan?
The difference between vegan and raw vegan has a lot to do with the way the food is prepared. Veganism, although avoiding all animal and animal-derived products, is pretty open to experimenting with new and improved plant-based options, ad is always on the lookout for meat alternatives and dairy substitutes.
This is where the key difference is, as raw vegans avoid all of that and only opt for foods that come directly from nature, rather than the processed version of such foods. This means that a vegan diet gets a lot more diversity and variety, whereas in a raw vegan diet you eat a group of the same foods in different ways. Raw vegan diets are very dependent on personal preference and belief, and people choose to create their own raw vegan rules as a result. This includes things such as cooking methods, product selection, and the temperature the food is allowed to reach.
What To Eat on a Raw Vegan Diet?
If raw veganism is appealing to you, your lifestyle and your goals, then it may be helpful to understand what type of diet you can expect when actually becoming raw vegan. A fully raw vegan diet plan consists of a number of different rules and guidelines that must be followed when preparing any of your meals.
Firstly, seventy-five percent of your diet should consist of foods that are eaten in their raw form or cooked at low temperatures. Your diet should also be largely made up of vegetables and fruits as well as nuts and seeds and sprouted grains and legumes. Some of the foods included in a raw vegan diet are:
- Fresh, dried, or dehydrated fruits;
- Raw, juiced, or dehydrated vegetables;
- Raw nuts and seeds;
- Uncooked grains and legumes (can be sprouted or soaked);
- Raw nut milk (mostly handmade);
- Raw nut butter;
- Cold-pressed oils;
- Fermented foods including things such as saurerkraut, kimchi and miso;
- Unprocessed sweeteners such as cacao powder;
- Condiments such as vinegar and unpasteurized sauces.
All cooked and processed foods should be avoided as well as salt, refined sugars, coffee and tea, baked goods, roasted nuts and seeds, refined oils, alcohol, and processed snacks.
Why Go Raw Vegan
There are many different reasons as to why going raw vegan can work to your advantage, a lot has to do with the various raw vegan diet benefits which include :
- May improve your heart health. Since a raw vegan diet is so vegetable and fruit-focused, it can help lower your overall blood pressure which in turn can lower your risk of contracting heart diseases, and because of the high nutrient quality, your overall heart health can actually be improved as a result of raw veganism.
- May reduce the risk of diabetes. Because the diet is so rich in fiber, it can help lower blood sugar levels and increase insulin sensitivity, which can lower your risk of type 1 and 2 diabetes.
- Aids Weightloss. Raw veganism has been proven to be an effective method of losing weight, and is said to be helpful in achieving a lower body fat percentage altogether.
- Improves digestion. he high amount of fiber in a raw vegan diet can help improve your digestion and keep you regular, decreasing your chances of experiencing stomach problems and constipation.
Is a Raw Vegan Diet Healthy?
Although there are many health benefits that come as a result of raw vegan source, it also may not be the healthiest option for everyone and does come with a few risks that of course will affect each individual differently. Some of the potential risks of following a fully raw vegan diet include:
- Difficult to be fully nutritionally balanced. In order to achieve a well-balanced amount of all the right nutrients in a raw vegan diet, there has to be a lot of planning and understanding of the food groups. This can be addressed by taking supplements.
- May weaken muscles and bones. One of the most common questions asked when it comes to a raw vegan diet is “how do raw vegans get protein?” and there is a reason it is asked so much. Getting enough on a raw vegan diet is extremely difficult, and it also means you have to eat a large amount of food to get your daily recommended levels. If these levels are not met, it can cause a decrease of muscle and bone mass, and also reduce your energy.
- May reduce fertility. Through many studies, some research has found that following a vegan diet may reduce fertility, particularly for women, due to its low-calorie content. With a raw food diet, getting enough calories can be even more difficult, meaning this diet can lead to many hormonal disruptions and health issues that show later on in life.
The Bottom Line
As you can see, raw veganism has both pros and cons and is a very personal decision when it comes to the choice of a complete lifestyle. Now that you know more about how to become a raw vegan, you can try it out for yourself and see how your body feels as a result.
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