|6 OF THE MOST COMMON MISTAKES
THAT PEOPLE MAKE ON A RAW FOOD DIET
1. NOT EATING ENOUGH CALORIES
The number one reason that people fail on a raw food diet is simply because they aren't eating enough calories. There
are a lot of people in the raw food movement who promote "calorie restriction" and teach that "The less you eat the
longer you will live." and there are even people claiming to be "breatharians" who say that we don't need to eat at all.
This is not something that I recommend and below are some signs that you aren't eating enough calories...
COMMON SIGNS THAT YOU AREN'T EATING ENOUGH CALORIES
1. TOO MUCH WEIGHT LOSS
I don't know anyone who became obese while eating a diet of only raw fruits and vegetables, but I do know some people
who lost too much weight while eating that way due to the fact that they were eating far less calorie than they needed.
Eating 2000 calories a day from fruits and vegetables is fairly simple and even if you need twice that much you can still
do it if the main staples in your diet are high calorie sweet fruits like bananas, dates, mangoes, persimmons, and
watermelons. (An "Apple" has less than 100 calories, but a pound of "Medjool Dates" has over 1,000 calories!) There
are a lot of calorie counting websites and programs out there that can help you keep track of your daily caloric intake as
well as how many vitamins and minerals you are getting and my favorite is a program called "Cron-O-Meter" which you
can download for free HERE
2. LOSS OF DESIRE TO BE ACTIVE
For every 1 pound that you weigh you will burn about 10 calories per day just from breathing, sleeping, and doing basic
everyday movements, so in other words, a 150 pound man will burn about 1,500 calories a day without exercising, and if
they are only eating about 1,500 calories a day their body will resist any forms of physical activity that requires a lot of
energy until they start giving their body more fuel.
3. TEMPTATION TO EAT FOODS THAT YOU KNOW AREN'T GOOD FOR YOU
We have all heard stories of plane crashes where the survivors ended up turning cannibal because they were starving,
so don't think that your personal food preferences and ethics won't completely go out the window if you deprive your
body of sufficient calories long enough! If your body is starving for calories you will start to develop strong cravings for
calorie dense foods that you have eaten in the past (such as pizza, cake, and ice cream) because although they may
not be very nutritious they are at least a quick way to get lots of additional calories in your body.
2. NOT DOING THIS DIET 100%
You do not have to eat a 100% raw food diet in order to receive major benefits. (Adding even a small amount of fruits
and vegetables to your diet can make a big difference.) however, if you give the diet a try for 30 days and during that 30
days you are still eating cooked food it wouldn't be fair to say that you tried eating only raw food for 30 days and it didn't
give you the results that you hoped for. Honesty is very important and if you choose to have days where you completely
abandon the diet and eat anything that comes your way just remember one piece of advice that I learned the hard way...
"Cheat Days" = "Sick Days"
3. BELIEVING THE HYPE ABOUT "SUPERFOODS"
Beware of charismatic speakers who go around giving lectures about the amazing benefits of certain "Superfoods" and
who also happen to sell these foods for outrageously large amounts of money. Below is a list of "Superfoods" that are
commonly sold on popular raw food websites...
THE SUPER FOODS
Lets not forget why we started the raw food diet in the first place. Almost every single one of the "Superfoods" listed
above are refined, processed, and packaged foods, and going back to eating refined, processed, and packaged foods
is taking a huge step backwards rather than forwards in my opinion.
I'm not denying that something like "Goji Berries" is a good food, but to say that it is 10 times better than eating
"Bananas" or "Blue Berries" is highly misleading in my opinion... First of all, even if a certain "Superfood" happens to be
really high in a specific vitamin or mineral (lets use "Vitamin C" as an example) why would you go out of your way and
spend a lot of money on a food just because it is touted as being a really high source of "Vitamin C" unless you are
deficient in "Vitamin C" and you can't find any other foods that provide you with adequate amounts of "Vitamin C"?
The word "Superfood" can mean different things to different people, (To some people a tomato that has been
genetically modified to be able to grow 5 times bigger than it would in nature would be considered a "Superfood".) but
the truth all of the fruits and vegetables that we eat are just as worthy of being called "Superfoods" as the foods that are
commonly given that name, and you could easily write an entire book about all of the amazing benefits of any fruit or
vegetable from "Apples" to "Celery".
"Superfoods" are notorious for being VERY expensive and in many cases people will spend so much money on them
each year that it would actually be cheaper for them to simply buy a plane ticket to where their favorite exotic
"Superfood" grows and pick them themselves, so please don't get caught-up in the "Superfoods" hype and end up
making $100 smoothies in your kitchen until you go bankrupt and end up going back to eating a SAD diet because you
believe that you have to be a millionaire to eat healthy.
4. FRUIT PHOBIA
There is a lot of unnecessary phobia surrounding fruit these days, and when people hear the words "high blood sugar"
they automatically assume that it's a problem that has to do with consuming too much sugar, when in reality the actual
problem is often nothing to do with eating more sugar than our bodies can handle, and is actually a result of one of the
following 3 problems...
1. TOO MUCH FAT IN THE DIET
Your cells use sugar as their main source of fuel, but in order for the sugar that you eat to get to your cells it first has to
travel through your blood stream and if you eat a high fat diet your blood stream will be thick and the sugar will have a
difficult time getting to your cells (Kind of like if you are trying to drive to work and you get stuck in a traffic jam.) and it
will stay in your blood stream for a lot longer than it should resulting in high blood sugar. The average American
consumes over 50 pounds of pure fat a year! But if you follow the diet that I am recommending the amount of fat that
you consume in a year will be much lower, plus every ounce of fat that you consume will come from plants and none of it
will be heated, processed, or refined in anyway, meaning that your blood stream should be a lot cleaner and better
capable of transporting sugar to your cells.
2. NOT GETTING ENOUGH EXERCISE
Sugar is powerful fuel for the body and if we choose to consume it in high amounts we need to be physically active.
(Just look at the children today who drink nothing but sugary sodas and spend most of their time sitting in front of a TV
playing video games.) Consuming lots of sugar and reducing the amount of physical activity that we get to only about
1% as much as we are supposed to get is going to result in problems.
3. CONSUMING SUGAR THAT HAVE BEEN STRIPPED OF IT'S FIBER, WATER, AND NUTRITIONAL VALUE
*** Sugar That Has Been Stripped Of It's Fiber
It's true that a banana has a lot of sugar in it, but the main difference between eating a sugary banana and drinking a
can of "Mountain Dew" is that the banana has fiber in it which will help to slow down the body's absorption of the sugar
to a natural speed that it can handle, and the can of "Mountain Dew" has absolutely no fiber in it at all which means that
all of the sugar in it will hit your blood stream instantly and this will result in a noticeable "sugar buzz" followed by a
"crash" shortly thereafter. Even fruit juice can be dangerous to drink because when you juice a fruit you are removing
it's fiber. (If you make fruit juice it is best to add some of the fiber back to it before you drink it.)
*** Sugar That Has Been Stripped Of It's Water
By weight most fruits are between 80% and 90% water and if you remove their water you will be consuming a much
higher concentration of sugar than normal. Some people recommend soaking dried fruit over night before eating it and I
agree that this will help, however, if you take a bowl of raisins and soak them in a bowl of water overnight they certainly
aren't going to turn back into the grapes that they once were, so it's always best to eat fruit in their natural state.
*** Sugar That Has Been Stripped Of It's Nutritional Value
White processed sugar has been completely stripped of all of it's nutritional value. It contains no vitamins, no minerals,
no fiber, no water, no protein, and no enzymes. It is unhealthy to consume white sugar in any amounts, yet the average
American is consuming over 100 pounds of white sugar a year! On a raw food diet you will consume absolutely no white
sugar and if you want to sweeten something you can simply use sweet fruits such as bananas or dates.
5. EATING A HIGH FAT DIET
The Standard American Diet is notoriously high in fat, so it should come as no surprise that when people eating a S.A.D.
diet decide to switch to a raw food diet they naturally find themselves gravitating towards the raw foods that are the
highest in fat such as avocados, coconuts, olives, nuts, and seeds which are all roughly 75% fat, and extracted oils such
as olive oil, coconut oil, and flax seed oil which are all 100% fat and will provide you with roughly 100 calories of fat per
tablespoon! This is ok during the transition to a raw food diet, but long term I would suggest that you aim to base your
diet more on fruit than fat.
6. BECOMING A "SUPPLEMENTARIAN"
I'm a big believer in the notion that with a healthy diet and lifestyle the need for supplementation is unnecessary and that
with an unhealthy diet and lifestyle no amount of supplements will be able to save you in the long run, and below are
some reasons that I feel supplements have the potential to do more harm than good...
WARNING: I'm not here to tell people to never take supplements. There could be a time in a person's life when
supplementation could be helpful or could even save their life, but before you start buying and taking supplements I
would first and foremost recommend that you get a blood test done and find out for sure whether or not you actually
need supplements so that you don't waste your money or go through a lot of unnecessary stress worrying about it. (A
lot of people who take supplements are actually just taking "sleeping pills" and what I mean by that is that the reason
they take supplements isn't because they got a blood test and found that they have a deficiency and need to be taking
them, but rather they take the supplements because they are so worried and confused about nutrition that taking the
supplement helps set their minds at ease and helps them sleep at night.)
PROBLEM WITH SUPPLEMENTS # 1 - "False Sense Of Security."
A lot of people that take supplements will look at the nutritional label and say to themselves, "Oh wow, if these
supplements are providing me with all of these vitamins and minerals than I don't really need to go out of my way to eat
fruits and vegetables anymore, because as long as I am taking these supplements I'm going to be fine." Everyone is
very attracted to the idea of being able to take a pill that will not only cure their health problems, but that will also allow
them to continue doing the things that caused their health problems in the first place, and sometimes people get the
false impression that supplements will do just that. (Putting a multi-vitamin tablet on top of a pizza isn't going to make
the pizza any less harmful.)
Diet is only one factor in the overall picture of health and certain lifestyle choices will cause your body to use up vitamins
and minerals a lot quicker than normal, and below are some examples of this...
- Vitamin A levels are lowered when you drink coffee.
- Vitamin B levels are lowered when you are under a lot of stress. (In a traffic jam, a job you hate, a bad relationship etc.)
- Vitamin C levels are lowered when you drink alcohol.
- Vitamin D levels are lowered when you lock yourself indoors and don't get sunlight.
- Vitamin E levels are lowered when you smoke cigarettes.
I know a lot of people who do all of these things and not surprisingly they are constantly getting sick and are constantly
reaching for another "energy drink" just to get them through the day.
PROBLEM WITH SUPPLEMENTS # 2 - "Supplements Usually Contain Unhealthy Added Ingredients."
Just look at the ingredient list on a can of "Whey Protein Powder" or even on a bottle of "Flintstones Chewable Vitamins"
and I think you will see why I feel that you would be much better off getting your nutrition from real foods rather than from
supplements. You may think that there aren't any filler ingredients in the supplements that you take, but keep in mind
that if there were no added ingredients in supplements many of them would actually be microscopic because if you look
at the nutritional label you will see that the actual amounts of each nutrient is usually measured in milligrams.
PROBLEM WITH SUPPLEMENTS #3 - "Getting Too Much Of A Nutrient Is Just As Bad As Getting Too Little Of It."
What a lot of people don't realize is that the majority of people who suffer from some kind of a nutritional disorder are
suffering because they have been getting "too much" of a certain nutrient and not because they have been getting "too
little" of it. The 3 most basic nutrients that we get from food are "Sugar", "Protein", and "Fat" and most people are
unhealthy because they eat "too much" of one of these 3 nutrients, (An example of this would be if a person decides to
become a vegetarian but they are so worried that they won't get enough protein in their diet because they keep getting
asked the question, "Where do you get your protein?" that they consume large amounts of protein supplements and
end up harming their liver and kidneys from excess protein.) Consuming any nutrient (From "Vitamin A" to "Iron") in
higher than necessary amounts can lead to serious health problems and can also condition your body to become far
less efficient at absorbing that nutrient in the future.
BACK TO STEP ONE
* Agave Nectar
* Bee Pollen
* Coconut Oil
* Goji Berries
* Maca Powder
* Mangosteen Juice
* Marine Phytoplankton
* Sea Salt
* Sea Weed
* Nut Butters
* Wheatgrass Juice
* Noni Juice
* Nutritional Yeast
* Olive Oil
* Royal Jelly