What  is the Raw Food Diet?
by Cecilia Benjumea
vegetarian diet consisting of mostly raw organic fruits, vegetables, nuts, and seeds.
Food is consumed in its natural whole state and not heated above 118º F.

Why Raw Foods?

When you eat foods in their whole natural state all the vitamins, minerals, enzymes,
amino acids, essential fats, phytonutrients, bioflavonoids, and plant hormones remain
intact and ready for assimilation by the body.

Doctors recommend at least 9 servings a day of fruits and vegetables for optimum
health; the raw food diet takes it a step further by increasing the intake of the
amazing health promoting substances found in fresh produce.

Here are just a few of the healing substances found in fresh produce and researchers
are discovering new ones all the time.

Bioflavanoids- naturally occurring plant compounds that are: antioxidant, anti-
mutagenic, anti-carcinogenic, anti-aging, and promote structure and function in the
circulatory system.

Phytonutrients-concentrated in the skin of many fruits and vegetables. Potent
antioxidants that can neutralize free radical damage. Free radicals are highly reactive
chemical substances that can lead to premature aging and disease.

Why Not Cook Your Food?

A variety of research has shown that cooking food above 118º F and above:

Destroys a good percentage of heat sensitive nutrients

Destroys the nutritive value of fat, and cooked fat has been shown to contain
carcinogenic substances and free radicals

Alters protein into substances that disrupt cellular function and speed up the disease
and aging process

Creates the formation of acrylamide that has been shown to cause cancer in animal
tests and is toxic to the nervous system of both humans and animals

Acrylamide is especially present in cooked starchy foods such as grains and potatoes.

What Are the Benefits of the Raw Food Diet?

Many people have found that on a mostly raw food diet:*

Many people have also seen improvements in chronic health conditions such as
asthma, chronic fatigue, fibromyalgia, lupus, and other autoimmune disorders. Even if
you decide not to eat a completely raw food diet you will notice positive
improvements just by adding more raw organic fruits and vegetables to your diet.

*These statements are from anecdotal evidence and have not been evaluated by the
FDA. Before you embark on a new diet regime please consult with your health care

What Do You Eat?

Typically most people on the raw food diet eat fresh organic fruits, fruit smoothies or
vegetable juices for breakfast. For lunch they might eat more fruit or a vegetable
dish such as a salad or blended soup. For dinner they might eat a large salad with a
creamy nut or seed based dressing or avocado. Once you learn how to prepare raw
foods you can make raw food dishes such as raw pizza, raw lasagna, raw spaghetti,
raw crackers, raw nut or seed pates, raw tacos, blended raw soups... (etc.) With a
little creativity and the right kitchen tools the possibilities are endless. To get started
right away just start adding more fresh fruits and vegetables into your routine. Add a
smoothie or piece of fruit to your breakfast and a large salad at lunch and dinner.
Snack on fresh organic fruit, vegetable sticks, low temperature dried fruits, or a
handful of raw organic nuts and seeds.

What Raw Items Can I Buy at my Local Health Food Store?

Organic Produce: including all organic fruits, vegetables, sprouts, and wheatgrass

Raw items in the bulk department such as: organic raw nuts and seeds, low
temperature dehydrated fruits, and various seaweeds and algae

Thai or Mexican Young Coconuts (Also know as Green or White Coconuts)

Raw nut and seed butters (ex:raw almond butter, raw hemp seed butter, and raw

Raw honey

Raw fermented cabbage sauerkraut

Prepared low temp. dehydrated raw food snacks such as energy bars, crackers,
chips, seasoned nuts and seeds, cookies, brownies, and raw candies

Some health food stores might even have prepared raw foods in the deli or
refrigerated section. Typically you will find raw desserts, raw pizza, raw dips and
pates, raw salad dressings, and salads.

If your local health food store has a juice/smoothie bar you can ask for a fresh raw
vegetable or fruit juice or a raw fruit smoothie. Fresh wheatgrass juice might also be

If you local health food store does not carry these items please feel free to request

I hope I inspired you to learn more about the raw food diet.

About The Author

Cecilia is a raw food teacher in Sonoma, California. For more information on the raw
food diet check out Cecilia's raw food website:
Your Online Source of
Inspiration and Information for Becoming Raw and Living a Glowing Life!
"Eating primarily raw foods is a
gentle, delicious, nature oriented, and
gradual way to restore health" -
Gabriel Cousins M.D. Excerpted from
Conscious Eating

"To be truly healthy and to ensure
adequate protection from
environmental hazards and pollution
it is important that you get an
abundance of vital nutrients from live,
uncooked foods, and fresh juices."
-Ann Wigmore Excerpted from The
Hippocrates Diet

The Raw Food Diet is a pure
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These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration (FDA). The content on
this website is for educational purposes only.  Please consult with your physician before using natural
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