Eating Raw is a Lifestyle

Raw foods add balance to the Western diet

A raw food diet is a lifestyle choice, not a weight loss plan. It centers on eating plant-based foods in their most natural state—uncooked and unprocessed.

Rebalancing acid and alkaline

Our ancestors ate a diet of plant and animal foods that were less processed and higher in alkaline content than our modern diet. In his book The Acid-Alkaline Diet for Optimum Health, Dr. Christopher Vasey says that the majority of Western industrialized nations today suffer from problems caused by a diet that is too acidic. Acid-producing foods—high-protein foods, cereals, and sugars—are eaten in greater quantity than alkaline foods like salads and fresh vegetables. He also points out that our stressful lifestyles, insufficient or excessive exercise, and the consumption of stimulants like tobacco, coffee, tea, and alcohol all have an acidifying effect on the body.

Eating raw, unprocessed food can be a formidable task. You can spend a lot of time in the kitchen chopping, peeling, straining, blending, and dehydrating. High heat destroys enzymes and may affect vitamin content so even dehydrating is limited to heating food to no more than 118 degrees. A strict raw food lifestyle may not be for everyone, but nutritionists agree that adding raw foods to your diet is beneficial for most people.

 

Raw Kale Chips

Yield: Four servings

1 large bunch curly leaf kale

1/2 teaspoon sea salt

1 tablespoon cold-pressed olive oil

1 teaspoon of balsamic vinegar

2 tablespoons of nutritional yeast

Tear the kale leaves off the stems and set them aside. (Make sure that the kale pieces are large enough so that they do not fall through the grates of the dehydrator.) In a large mixing bowl combine sea salt, olive oil, balsamic vinegar, and yeast. Add the kale leaves to the bowl and toss to cover the kale with the seasoning. Bake in the dehydrator for two hours at 115 degrees. You can change the crispiness of the kale by modifying the dehydration time.