I’ve just been looking online to see if I can make a bit more sense of the raw thing. It’s very interesting to me though I haven’t taken any major steps (yet)...I really want to though. I’ve been a vegetarian for 15 years and now mostly vegan…
The thing I like about Gone Raw is that the members generally sound …normal, friendly and helpful! (I can’t be the only person who sometimes finds other sites/blogs relating to one of your interests a bit off-putting if you’re a beginner (either because you can’t decipher the jargon, or the views are more extreme or the contributors sound a bit mental, in a word).)
Perhaps you have some practical tips in relation to my (sadly numerous) queries…
At the moment I work and study (in London) so spare time/money is minimal to non-existent. Some good books for beginners have been mentioned, which is great… so far I’ve only read Rainbow Green Live Food Cuisine which is cool but doesn’t seem pitched at the absolute beginner. At the moment I just have a coffee grinder and a crappy blender (not a high-end one at all). I don’t have a dehydrator. I’ve never even seen one. But it also bothers me that so many raw recipes call for a wide array of exotic ingredients from various corners of the globe; aside from food mile concerns (if that is a factor), ....
(1)how do you manage your shopping? I get an organic box delivery which covers fresh fruit/veg/herbs, dried pulses/seeds and other things but not really any specialist ingredients. Health stores here are either crap or beyond my budget.
(2)How much more do you spend on food if you are, say 50% raw? (So much more nuts, seeds, oils and specialist ingredients….!)
(3) How do you plan your life around extended cooking times (e.g. so many things need soaking and dehydrating)? It’s these first steps that are daunting! I’m sure that it just takes a little bit of time and a few tricks to get started, from what other members have said… Though personally I would rather prepare simpler food than things made from loads of ingredients that take 12+ hours before you can eat…
Any first steps you recommend? So far I’ve been making coleslaw or grating carrots, or making fennel and apple salad, or chopping kale, and adding these raw ingredients to complement a mainly cooked meal.(My plan is to gradually decrease the amount of cooked food and increase the amount of raw stuff.)
(4)Are there any specific raw resources for deliberately simple/low-tech recipes? I gather from other posts that juicing and salads are the way to start but too much repetition (unless it’s easy, clever and delicious) will demotivate me . (I don’t even have a juicer!)
(5) I gave up sugar (honey, syrup and other concentrated/fast-releasing sweet things) 3 weeks ago so I would probably avoid higher-GL things most of the time. Does anyone else avoid these and how do you feel?
(6) I have a large appetite (normal weight for my height though) and was wondering if my appetite is likely to decrease. I like to exercise, too. I just wonder what physical effects I might feel… increase in energy? decrease? Am I going to feel cold all the time? (I already feel cold easily) Am I going to be spending half my day chewing? Or spend half my income on nuts? ;-p
OK, I’m sure I’ll think of some other questions but I am looking forward to your no-doubt helpful, practical and supportive insight and experience. Many thanks! A
(1) in summer, organic raw farm pickups. in winter, local market.
(2) My info gathered from another forum: $60-100 per week for one person. The cost variety depends on purchasing organic or not, and the amt of specialty consumed.
(5) I love fruit! I crave natural sugar that’s in fruit and dates. I dont miss regular sugar at al.
(3) I only make gourmet raw on the weekends.
(6) more energy, larger appetite at first then after many months high raw (80-100%) possibly lower appetite.
(7) many people ive asked, eat 1/2-1 cup of nuts per day, max. you can poll other forum members about their eating habits.
Oh, check this out:
We’re recording everything we eat for a week. So you can see that we eat mostly salads, veggies, greens, fruits – and only occasionally nuts/gourmet. You can do raw on a budget, and you certainly can do it without most fancy ingredients – I do!! Instead of gourmet, check out nature’s variety – dozens of veg, fruit, greens just waiting to be sampled.
My simple advice is, get the book Green for Life by Victoria Boutenko and try to find a Vitamix on eBay (not sure how that works in England). The Vitamix was an investment for me but I use it probably 3 times a day, every day. The book explains green smoothies which don’t use anything exotic, other than whatever greens and fruits look good to you at the moment. I’m not one for dehydrating, soaking, sprouting. You will need some kind of fat like flax oil, hemp oil, for omega 3’s. As far as appetite, you’ll probably feel hungrier at first, I had to eat every 2 hours at least, you may feel tired, cold, all that good stuff! I wish I had the book early on in my transition because I was overwhelmed by raw recipes. Keep checking in on your progress or any problems and good luck!
I know how you feel. I have bought several books recently on raw food eating, thinking I’d like to make raw food more interesting and the recipes are overwhelming! But I started simple, and I would recommend that path to everyone. I learnt about raw food at a health farm in India, where they served everyone just bananas and coconut – and the people who usually ended up there were those who had been rejected from the standard medical system, like me. Everyone became healthy on this diet – of course also lots of fresh air, sunshine and fresh water from the well too. But I always go back to this basic, when I realise my body is getting unhealthy, and also when I get frustrated with how complicated raw food recipes seem to make things. I eat bananas and almonds here (because coconuts can be a bother to open and dig out – then you have to use it all quickly before it goes off). It still does the trick, very quickly my body feels supple and agile, my skin glows and I feel light and youthful. I tried a smoothie made of just one fairly ripe mango and a couple of handfuls of young spinach yesterday and that was delicious! But to me that’s as complicated as I want it to be!