High Raw Diet Diary

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I am now starting my preparation for the 2013 High Raw Diet! I am setting the challenge quite high this time, as I have decided to also give up all tea completely during this diet, with the exception of certain medicinal teas that I make myself of real ingredients, such as chaga mushroom tea, liquorice tea and reishi mushroom tea.

I am already caffeine free since about three months ago and now I will steer clear of teabags, hot drinks in general and also all dairy, gluten and processed foods, whether raw or not. So I will not be having raw snack bars, as I think they are difficult to digest. I will also stay away from all rancid oils, i.e. vegetable oils that are not stored in dark bottles.

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I will, however, only aim at 80% raw this time for reasons explained here: 100% Raw or High Raw Diet? I will not put a day limit this time but just see how I feel and how the experiment goes. I am hoping that this diet will work so well that I can make it a permanent lifestyle change but the reality will most likely be that I encounter some challenges, as I did last time, and I will decide to come off the diet to allow me to take a break and make some adjustments. I will endeavour to stick to this diet plan at least well into the spring and throughout my two months off work.

I will drink live spring water as much as possible, although will most likely be forced to drink tap water as well from time to time, especially at work. In terms of work it will be quite challenging times because I am working on a competition, which will probably require quite a bit of overtime, or perhaps even weekend work. But the high raw diet will hopefully keep my energies up and help me concentrate better - although the opposite might happen and I might need more sleep because of the detoxification. I will try to sleep as much as my body feels it needs to, even if it means sometimes going to bed at 9pm.

To reduce the detox symptoms and to help my liver cleanse I will take home enemas: both water and coffee enemas.

I will be roughly 80% raw during this 2013 raw food diet. I will allow myself a little bit of cooked complex carbohydrates either at lunch time or at dinner but not at both. Examples of complex carbs are: yams, sweet potatoes, quinoa, millet, amaranth, black and red rice. I will not eat white potatoes, white rice, pasta, couscous, etc. because they are simple carbs, which are very fattening and harmful for the digestive system.

I will also take supplements which are not raw. I will allow myself to drink pasteurized fruit/ vegetable juices and smoothies and may do another juice fast during this trial. Or I may choose to start juice fasting one day per week - I will see how it goes. I will may also include some non-raw comfort foods, which are nevertheless quite healthy, such as hummus, at least in the beginning of the diet.

I will take a cheat day once a week during the 2013 raw food diet, which means that I'm allowed to eat anything, including drinking alcohol. I will not drink any alcohol, raw or not during the rest of the days. In the long term I am hoping to give up alcohol altogether, however, because I believe and feel that it puts my mind and body into a lower vibration level.

In addition, I will have a new 'rule' - different from my previous trials - that if I decide to meet up with people for lunch or a dinner party, etc., I will allow myself to eat whatever is on the menu. This way I don't have to bring up the topic of raw food with everyone and I can appreciate foods that other people cook for me. On my next trip to Finland, however, I will try to stick to this diet plan, allowing only one cheat day per week, if at all possible.

I will be vegan, apart from eating honey, bee pollen and animal glandular supplements. I may eat some raw organic eggs if I feel like I need to for some reason, but probably not. I will not eat any dairy or gluten, not even raw cheese, except on cheat days. I have discussed the benefits of being dairy free and the benefits of being gluten free elsewhere.

I had originally put this high raw diet on hold, until I dealt with certain health challenges that were recently revealed in my live blood analysis and hair mineral analysis. I generally think that there are many underlying health issues that are worth overcoming before starting a longer-term raw food diet. A short-term raw food diet, by contrast, is usually fine as a cleansing or weight-loss tool.

I was advised by both of the above naturopaths not to start a raw food diet right now. The reasons had to do with my weak digestive system and the fact that they thought I needed protein, in the form of meat. Neither of them recommended a raw food diet in the long term.

This confused me for a while, especially since the conditions they found I had underlying seemed quite substantial. I got a little scared, I guess, and forgot to enjoy this health process and trust my intuition. I've changed my mind now, however, as I have done my own research on many of the topics the two naturopaths reported. You can read more about these conditions at the reports linked to above, and I will also talk about some aspects in the text below. I guess the main challenges I am facing right now - and feel that I can sufficiently tackle while on a raw food diet - are 1) adrenal insufficiency, 2) sluggish thyroid, 3) weak digestive system, 4) heart burn, which causes my cough (diagnosed by an allopathic doctor), 5) weak liver, 6) protein, zinc and omega 3 deficiency, 7) aluminium toxicity.

Please note, however, that none of these problems are serious enough to be picked up in normal lab tests by normal doctors. I have been recently tested and there was nothing wrong. But the naturopaths look for imbalances in the system, which are not yet outright diseases.

By the way, my general report on the raw food diet and its benefits is here:
Raw Food Diet.

Here are the different cleanses/ experiments I have performed in preparation for this diet:
- 21 Day Juice Fast
- Food Intolerance Test
- Live Blood Analysis
- Hair Tissue Mineral Analysis
- Dairy and Gluten Free Diet

I have just completed a dairy and gluten free diet, where I found out that either both or one of these caused mucous build-up and digestive problems in my system. I will thus continue to be gluten and dairy free on this diet.

The 2013 Raw Food Diet will have a different emphasis from the previous 100-day raw food trial, which I ended early (at day 62) for seven reasons:

  • My allergy symptoms were not going (post-nasal drip with a cough). [Update: I now know that the cough was caused by heart burn and difficulty in digesting food. I now take digestive enzymes to correct this problem.]
  • I started feeling low in energy.
  • I was addicted to caffeine, again (green tea).
  • Detailed budget calculations took too much of my daily time.
  • I decided I needed to relax for a while and re-evaluate the diet.
  • I felt my discipline (and daily routine) weren't good enough.
  • Holiday season was approaching and I wanted to be non-raw for a while for social reasons.
  • I was also eating some foods that I later found out I had an intolerance to, such as carrots.

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The Improved 2013 Raw Food Diet/ Emphasis

The emphasis will be on:

  1. This will not be a 100% raw diet. I don't think anymore that 100% raw should be attempted for a lengthy period of time until a high-raw diet is mastered.
  2. Avoiding stimulants. I would like to feel how life feels like without stimulants, when the body's energy levels function naturally and optimally.
  3. Ensuring eating often enough, and either good quality carbs or protein. Making sure to fuel the body often (every three hours). This will help keep the energy levels up, maintain focus throughout the day and to not need caffeine, sugary snacks or other unhealthy snacks.
  4. Improving and strengthening digestion. Eating easy-to-digest foods, taking digestive enzymes with every meal, and also taking plenty of probiotics - especially kefir and EM - but experimenting also with other fermented foods. Drinking smoothies slowly or eating them with a spoon to allow the body time to digest.
  5. Trying to include some exercise or at least stretching every day. I want to just get into the habit of doing something, even little, in the beginning. I am doing the 30-day experiment on trauma release exercises first but after that I hope to do different types of exercises daily. This is important to get more oxygen into my body, to quiet the mind, to improve energy levels and confidence, and to keep everything moving. In Barbara Wren's: "Healing is about creating freedom of movement. Think about how much movement the energies of the universe are trying to bring to bear on our body with these natural rhythms."
  6. Prepare tasty raw food dishes and snacks always well in advance.
  7. Eating micronutrient-dense foods.
  8. Taking plenty of greens every day.
  9. Staying 100% caffeine free, even on cheat days.
  10. Stay gluten, dairy, and alcohol free, except on cheat days.
  11. Possibly juice fast one day per week.
  12. Taking enemas regularly to help with the detox.
  13. Detoxifying heavy metals: coffee enemas and drinking HealthForce Nutritionals' bentonite clay mixed with water.
  14. Ensure enough Omega 3s in the diet. Supplement in the beginning but research also how to get these naturally.
  15. Ensure enough iron in the diet. Supplement initially.
  16. Don't eat any processed foods except maybe on cheat days.
  17. Plan menus one week in advance.
  18. Go to sleep at 10pm. Never stay up late if you can avoid it. If I start eventually, long term, on the raw food diet to feel like I need less sleep, this should naturally manifest as waking up earlier and more refreshed.
  19. Take adrenal gland, liver and thyroid balancing and strengthening herbs and supplements (because these problems were identified in the hair mineral analysis).
  20. Don't include raw cereal bars etc. because they are very processed and most likely difficult to digest.
  21. Organic raw eggs are allowed, as is raw sushi fish.
  22. Try to eat only healthy fats as much as possible. E.g. vegetable oils only cold-pressed and stored in dark bottles and in the fridge as they spoil easily.
  23. Try to soak nuts and seeds as much as possible and to keep sprouts growing constantly.
  24. Pasteurized fruit and vegetable juice is allowed. Always keep plenty with you at work etc. as snacks.
  25. Ensure plenty of antioxidants: chaga mushroom tea, broccoli sprouts, goji berries, other berries, etc.
  26. Eating small amounts of cooked and/or sprouted complex carbohydrates for calories (gluten and wheat free, unprocessed)
  27. Drinking 'live' water
  28. Being wheat and gluten free, as well as dairy free
  29. Possibly taking MSM and other supplements to decalcify.

I will also keep diary notes especially about the following topics [Later note: This was the intention - and a good one - but I found out that in reality I didn't have time to write about these topics...]

  • What makes it difficult to plan raw foods ahead and how to save time.
  • New snack ideas (one every day)
  • How do I experience the brain's stimulation (energy) and how do I cope without stimulants.
  • Write down a new favourite raw food regularly, and explain why it is a favourite. Try to find a new raw food recipe you would like to try every day and add to next weekly diet plan.
  • Try a new smoothie/ juice combo every weekend. (Get a book on juices/ smoothies.)
  • Monitor any symptoms of indigestion very carefully. I never had big problems but still always thought that a little burbing, farting, etc. was quite normal. However, now I read them as symptoms related to heart burn, which, in turn, causes my cough. So I will keep a closer eye on these.

Follow the link to read my article where I reason why it is better to be high raw instead of 100% raw.

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Food Preparation - Enjoyment and Discipline on the 2013 Raw Food Diet

Compared to my previous experiments, I have also realised that I need to enjoy the raw foods I make more because it does make a difference to your moods. I think enjoying the food you eat makes a difference to the chemicals and hormones in your brain. Previously I made some easy and extremely tasty raw food dishes but not often enough.

To achieve this I need to spend more time in the kitchen making recipes, instead of just eating salads and smoothies constantly. I also need to try to manage my finances and do my weekly shopping so that my cupboards are always full of food to eat. I will endeavour to order food in bulk off the internet, instead of shopping at Wholefoods, to save money. Below is a list of the foods and ingredients I will try to always have available...

  • flax crackers and dehydrated pizza bases
  • fruit salad
  • salad dressings
  • sprouted millet and quinoa
  • sprouted and dehydrated buckwheat (to use instead of cereal)
  • almond milk and frozen almond milk cubes
  • plenty of frozen berries
  • supplements
  • certain superfoods, such as chlorella, spirulina and goji berries
  • raw nuts of many kinds
  • guacamole
  • raw sweets, such as chocolate cake (in the freezer also)
  • lots of fruits, greens and vegetables
  • seaweeds
  • complex carbs (wild rice, millet, sweet potatoes, yam, quinoa)
  • raw kale crisps, sweet potato crisps, or other dehydrated treats
  • live water
  • plenty of new raw recipes that I have chosen for trying, together with ingredients for making them
  • fresh herbs, such as parsley (for tabbouleh) and coriander (i.e. cilantro, to make into a green soup with avocado)
  • fruit juice
  • soaked nuts and seeds
  • probiotic nut 'cheeze'
  • research on what raw foods can be frozen, and those dishes prepared into the freezer
  • raw sundried tomatoes and other goodies
  • a probiotic drink, such as water kefir

The problem with raw foods is that it is best to eat most recipes soon after making, as the flavours will soon deteriorate. That is why it is critically important to organise oneself and think about the daily meals well in advance. I hope to get into a habit of using the dehydrator almost on a daily basis during this 2013 raw food diet. For best results I should also drink 1-2 bunches of greens as juice per day but sometimes I get a little bored of green juices so will just see how this goes first.

I discuss how to prepare for a raw food diet more here:
"How to Succeed on a Raw Food Diet"

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High Energy on Raw Food Diet 2013

High energy has been a little elusive goal so far on my raw food diet experiments. I believe caffeine and the inclusion of dairy have hindered my progress on this. But the main energy problems previously stemmed from the weakened adrenal glands, thyroid glands and liver. Part of the idea behind this 2013 raw food diet is to build these organs back up to strength, with the help of supplements, herbs, relaxation, detoxification and healthy living. Also, possibly not eating enough (not getting enough calories) has stopped me from achieving high levels of energy on the previous raw food diets.

Please note that I have revised this article and removed many of the original ideas I had for this 2013 raw food diet. For example, I have changed my mind about the supplements that I thought I would be taking for energy and am not planning to take those specific ones anymore. If you wish to read these removed notes, I have saved them here, with later comments, just so as to keep a full record:
2013 Raw Food Diet: Additional Notes

2013 Raw Food Diet Diary

Start here:
Week 1 - High Raw Diet Diary

The above diary also includes a 10-day juice fast diary.

[Update: Please note that this diet ended after 38 days and a new one started. The later diary can be accessed here:
2013 Raw Food Diet - Weeks 1-3]

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