Raw and living foods play a meaningful part in my lifestyle and dietary choices for one main reason: they make me feel ALIVE. I am on my health journey to better understand what facilitates my body in feeling its best and raw foods truly make me feel energized and connected!
What defines a raw food?
Simply put, raw foods have not been cooked. More specifically, it refers to any food that has not been heated above 118 degrees fahrenheit. It is at this temperature that many enzymes and nutrients begin to be lost which are two vital components to health.
What are Enzymes?
Enzymes are protein molecules that are found within cells. They are catalysts in the digestive process within the body, meaning they enhance the chemical processes at work as digestion occurs. Different enzymes are needed to digest different foods and since nature is so amazing, each of our fresh, raw foods come equipped with enzymes that our bodies need for flawless digestion. I say with confidence that proper digestion and absorption of nutrients is vital to reaching optimal health. Therefore, enzymes are important because they allow the body to effectively digest food and to therefore readily absorb the nutrients that are present. One of the main reasons to eat foods in their raw state is the preservation of enzymes that are naturally occurring within the food source. Enzymes (and nutrients to some extent) are very heat sensitive. Therefore, to ensure that the food is being effectively digested and that nutrients are sustained and absorbed, it is beneficial to include raw foods in one’s diet.
What is the difference between raw and living foods?
These terms are used somewhat loosely yet I think there’s a distinguishment that can be made. Both raw and living/live foods are defined as not being heated above 118 degrees. Living foods, however, are generally defined as raw foods that have been “activated” to produce a higher nutrient and enzyme level than their original state. For example, when one practices soaking & sprouting techniques, they are enlivening their food with more enzyme and nutrient potential. So, to say it short and sweet: live/living foods are also considered raw foods, but raw foods are not always referred to as a live/living foods and both are part of what is known as a “raw food diet”. When sharing recipes and information on MCK, I will use the term “raw” to describe both because it seems to be more widely used and understood.
What’s all the hype about?
A lot of people place the “fad” label on the raw food movement. I believe that it is so much more than a trend. It is a way of tuning in, of developing awareness, of obtaining vital nutrients, and of feeling biologically connected to and appreciative of the earth.
Why do I love raw foods?
∞ENERGY— a feeling of lightness both mentally, physically, and spiritually.
∞AWARENESS— allows me to truly LISTEN to and HEAR my body, so so so important.
∞SIMPLICITY— fresh fruits and veggies are the ultimate fast food
∞BEAUTY— within the food and as a reflection within the body
∞MOTIVATION— to MOVE my body
∞GROUNDING— helps me feel more CONNECTED to myself and to my environment.
It is not necessary to eat 100% raw foods to feel any or all of these benefits. There is so much potency to be felt within every bit of raw food medicine; whether it be a green smoothie once every few days or living a full-force raw foodie lifestyle, every bit counts to provide healing and energy. If raw foods feel inspiring to you, make small changes and most importantly… LISTEN to, LEARN from, and LOVE your body.
With health & heart,