Raw Foods—Where to Start

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At Sprouts, we’re making the raw food diet easy. Why? The raw food diet is a great way to eat more nutritious foods, and because raw foods have higher nutrient values than foods that have been cooked.

What is a Raw Food Diet?

A raw foodist is someone who consumes nutritionally dense, unprocessed foods that have not been exposed to temperatures higher than 118°F. Typically the raw food diet includes fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds and sprouted grains—”living” foods. Organic Kale Chips

Why Eat Raw Foods?

Partaking in the raw food diet can help boost your body’s natural chemical reactions. By keeping your meals at a temperature less than 118°F, you avoid destroying essential enzymes, vitamins and nutrients found in “living” foods. These enzymes, vitamins and nutrients are key to digestion, cell repair, and other functions that are essential for overall health and wellness.

What Would I Eat?

The raw food diet includes fresh vegetables, fresh and dehydrated fruits, nuts and seeds, healthy fats from coconuts, avocados, hemp and flax seeds, as well as nutritious milks from almonds and cashews. Most raw foodist eat a vegan diet—the practice of abstaining from the consumption of meat, poultry, seafood and the flesh of any other animal, in addition to beeswax, honey, cheese, eggs and milk. But there are some that consume unprocessed raw animal foods such as fish, muscle-meats/organ-meats/eggs, and raw dairy. To help you eat raw while on the go, Sprouts carries a variety of quick and easy raw snacks to fit your dietary needs. Our Organic Kale Chips make for a tasty raw food treat.

Try these recipes:

Cider Cleanse Supergreen Smoothie Raw-some Brownies

Do I Have to Stop Eating Cooked Foods?

You don’t have to eat raw foods 100 percent of the time to reap its health benefits. Consider a diet that contains 50 percent or more of living foods; it’s a great way to boost your immune and digestive health. By maintaining a balanced diet that includes lots of organic, fresh, raw foods and nutrient-packed cooked plant-based foods, you can keep your body strong and healthy.

Are There Any Potential Drawbacks?

Consuming enough calories and eating a well-rounded diet will help avoid nutrient deficiencies. Vitamin B-12, D, and the essential amino acids—methionine and lysine—are the most common deficiencies. Research shows that plant-sourced B-12 is not readily bio-available to humans. Very few foods naturally contain Vitamin D. Fatty fish (such as salmon, tuna and mackerel) are among the best sources. Beef liver, cheese, egg yolks and mushrooms provide vitamin D as well. Plant and grain-based proteins are considered incomplete proteins because they don’t contain all of the essential amino acids. A well-rounded diet will go a long way toward providing the proper nutrients needed to maintain overall health and well-being.