Friday, 8 January 2016
The Importance Of Raw Food
We've all heard about how amazing raw fruit and vegetables - particularly over the last year or so there's been an increase in the amount of hype and attention raw foods have gotten, but why are they so good for us? Isn't eating cooked vegetables the same as eating raw vegetables? Don't you get the same benefits? I never thought there was any difference between eating steamed kale to raw kale but actually there's more of a difference than I ever could have thought! I did lots of research on the matter and found such a wealth of information that I couldn't not share it with you so you too can start to get the maximum benefits from all that wonderful food you put into your body.
Raw foods are foods in their natural, original state that haven't been cooked, heat-treated or processed in any way. They're the answer to so many health concerns and the force that keeps our body looked and feeling young, healthy and glowing. Raw foods contain so many more nutrients, enzymes, vitamins and minerals compared to when they're cooked or processed. Your body will thrive on these raw nutritionat dense foods and the more you eat the less you have to worry about the important pH of your body (more on this at a later date), getting ill or lacking in energy.
In their raw form foods such as leafy greens, vegetables, seeds, nuts, juices and fruits flood our body with goodness, including oxygen. Oxygen is of course vital for our health and for us to remain living, our body loves oxygen and our cells thrive an alkaline, oxygen-rich diet whereas unhealthy cells (like cancer cells), bacteria and viruses hate oxygen, they can't stand it! These nasty cells thrive under a diet that's acidic and full of processed foods that lack the real goodness we need. Some doctors go as far to say as cancer cells actually can't live in a body that's bursting with oxygen goodness!
When we eat a plant-based diet with lots of raw yumminess we maintain the oxygen-rich environment our body needs, the more oxygen we have the more health we experience.
Enzymes are the protein catalysts in our body that set off so many complex and important chemical reactions in our cells. Enzymes help with digestion, brain function and literally keeping you alive - hence why they're so important. Here's where raw food comes into play - enzymes are heat sensitive. Cooking above 118 degrees destroys enzymes in your food. So, if you eat a diet that's highly processed or loads of overly cooked foods you're in trouble - refined and pasteurised foods and drinks are the worst as they're completely destroyed. If you don't get adequate enzymes through diet your body has to make more to get the jobs done, but your body only has so much energy. When your body starts making the digestive enzymes we need it has less time for the metabolic enzymes, which are the enzymes that run your body, build tissue, protect organs and product energy - needless to say they're extremely important and we need as many of them as we can get. Your body also needs to get extra enzymes through diet for optimum health, especially as our production of enzymes slows down as we age.
H₂0 is obviously an extremely vital part of us, it makes up around 70% of our body but a lot of people don't consume enough of this essential, powerful substance which can lead to a whole load of side effects. Consuming plenty of water is the greatest protection you can give your body, but consuming raw juices is even better - your body will simply lap up all the goodness and your cells will dance. Eating raw, organic vegetables, nuts, beans and seeds is another brilliant way to keep those H₂0 levels up, keeping that body & mind happy!
Raw foods are an incredibly important and vital part of a healthy diet, they really are so powerful and protect our beautiful body from harm. This doesn't mean that you only need to eat raw foods, of course not, but if you just make sure you get a good amount of raw goodness every day you're well on your way to achieving the most healthy body (inside and out!) - this could mean having a colourful raw salad for lunch full of things like spinach, beetroot, cherry tomatoes, celery, beans and broccoli sprouts, it could mean you have raw courgette noodles instead of spaghetti or make a delicious green smoothie or juice with kale, spinach, celery and apple.
Try and get as many raw veggies in your diet before dinner time though, as after about 4pm our digestive system starts to slow down and cooked food tends to be easier to digest - but just cook things gently, there's no need to boil them to death!
I hope you start enjoying raw, natural foods more and more - your body & mind will no doubt thank you for it!
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