These days, we’re seeing more and more instances of a variety of autoimmune disorders. Diseases like MS, lupus, rheumatoid arthritis, and a host of others seem to be on the rise. Some say that it’s merely due to better diagnostic tools; and others say that it’s environmental factors: pollution and the foods we eat that are leading to more people being hit by these maladies. In response to this, many people feel that a raw diet, one that shuns the processed foods, the refined sugars, the high fructose corn syrup, and other additives is the key to good health.
Now, an important point to remember here is that the diet is not necessarily made up solely of raw foods. The goal of the diet is for you to eat the foods in as close to their whole state as possible. That means either eating them as they are, or using boiling or steaming to prepare them. In every instance, you want to avoid foods that are highly processed. So, if you want to eat rice, as an example, go with brown rice as opposed to white rice.
In terms of what food you’ll want to eat, here’s just a partial list of foods that are okay to eat on this diet: whole grain cereals, legumes, fermented soy products, fruits, vegetables, sea vegetables – like seaweed, brown rice, soba noodles, all types of beans, and tofu. You may have noticed a lack of meats listed; this is deliberate. By and large, a raw diet does not include meats; only fish and other seafood are allowed.
This diet believes in the concept of properly combining your foods. The belief is that this ensures that your food digests properly. The phrase often used is calling it the: yin and yang of the digestive process. So, a key aspect of this diet is that you do not eat too many yin foods. This means not overloading your meals with too much of the following: peppers, potatoes, tomatoes, spinach, beets, avocadoes, and eggplant.
Here again, you can see the heavy vegetarian aspects of this diet. In addition, you need to not partake of beverages that have stimulants like caffeine. So, don’t drink a lot of soda or coffee. Instead, certain teas and lots of water are the best drinks.
Another to remember about this diet is how you eat each meal. Keep your portions small, and you must chew your food well; this is most helpful in aiding your digestion. Not only does it break the food up into small manageable amounts for your stomach and intestines to handle, but it thoroughly drenches the food in saliva, the first step in digestion.
So, when looking to determine what sort of portions you want for your meal, here’s a rough outline: first, make about half your meal of whole grains, and that includes brown rice. This is especially important if you have an allergy to gluten, as rice doesn’t have that. Next, you’ll want about a third of the meal to be vegetables. Beyond that, some beans and legumes can be about ten percent, and then five percent for some kind of soup. To round things out, toss in some nuts, fish, juices and seasoning as you see fit. You really want to avoid red meat as much as possible. If you really like meat, and want some, at least aim to buy local, and thus avoid those with chemicals. In fact, when it comes to all of your foods, try to get only local produce.
Follow these guidelines, and you’ll see a real improvement in the state of your overall health.