Eating raw foods or a high-raw diet (80 percent raw and 20 percent cooked foods) allows your digestive system to work efficiently, without stress.
When you eat foods that need only minimal energy for your body to break down and absorb, you will have more energy to do whatever it is you want to do – finish a complex project at work, take a dance class, go to the movies with your children, have a date night with your partner – with more vigor.
If, on the other hand, you eat processed or nonnutritious fatty or sugar-laden foods, your body goes into digestive overdrive to process and metabolize the food. Your pancreas will churn out large doses of insulin to break down and absorb all the sugar, causing spikes in your blood sugar that can leave you feeling tired and cranky and even hungrier, especially when these levels plummet.
Worse, any excess sugar not immediately needed by your body will be stored as fat. Who needs that? Not me and not you. Not anyone, in fact!
Let me push this point a little bit more: Let’s say you were late for work and barely had time to scarf down a bagel and cream cheese for breakfast. By the time lunch rolls around you’re starving, and when your colleagues suggest going to the nearest diner, you happily agree that it’s a great idea. You order a cheeseburger and fries for lunch and wolf them down because you’re so hungry, and then you can’t help ordering a piece of cheesecake for dessert. You go back to the office, but you’re suddenly so tired you can barely concentrate and type out the report that’s due. So you eat a candy bar for an instant pick-me-up, which works for about twenty minutes, but then all of a sudden you’re even more tired and cranky, so you stop for a slice of pizza on the way home to tide you over until dinner.
I know exactly how you’d feel because this is the way I used to eat. I had no idea that eating a hamburger bun made from white flour was basically giving me no viable nutrients, and that the ground beef and gooey melted cheese from the burger would take up to three days to make its way through my intestines.
And I also understand the stress you’re under every day and the limited options you might have for eating right.
I am an entrepreneur going at a million miles an hour every day, and sometimes – even after eating a high-raw diet for so long – I stop at my local cafe and have a hummus and guacamole sandwich on sourdough bread. I love it and it tastes great while I’m eating it, but after a while I start to feel irritable and bloated – thanks, primarily, to the highly processed flour in the bread – and always want to crash for a nap.
In other words, even the healthiest foods can have adverse reactions for someone like me, who is accustomed to eating raw, not cooked, food. (And hummus is a cooked food unless you make it from sprouted chickpeas!) When I stick to a green smoothie and salad for lunch instead of a sandwich, my energy level skyrockets and my thinking remains clear.
Excerpted from Brad’s Raw Book: A 60-Day, 3-Phase Plan for Losing Weight, Optimizing Health, and Living an 80/20 Raw Lifestyle
Do you think an 80/20 raw food diet is doable? Tell us in a comment!