Your whole food, plant-based life.

Raw Food and Individuality

Raw Food Recipes

When it comes to raw food and diet,  it is important to understand that every body is different. Every body has different needs. We rarely think about this. But it you take into consideration what the range of “normal” is for many medical tests, it is vast. It is going to be up to you to figure out what is best for your body in terms of raw food.

I happen to love garlic. I have friends who can’t tolerate it. I have a girlfriend who gets violently ill from green peppers and another one who can go into shock from crab. We even know that peanuts can kill some. Others can eat them by the truck load. My point?

It’s all about biochemical individuality. Introduced by world renowned biochemist Roger Williams, PH.D. back in 1956, biochemical individuality points out, amongst other things that nutritional needs vary among different people for optimal function. He even discovered that identical twins could have different needs.

The most exciting piece of research that he introduced is that your nutritional profile, or what you eat, can have a direct impact on the expression of your genes. What was old is new again as today’s molecular biologists are intently studying this and reporting the same findings.

What does this mean? It means that there is a direct relationship between what you eat and your body’s ability to fight off disease and also heal itself. This is a very important piece of information to keep in mind as you figure out what what works and what doesn’t work for your own body.

There are some basic premises that we can start with. We know that nutrient void highly processed, highly sugared foods are not good for us. Our bodies are designed to be self-healing. But they can only do this if they get the right nutrients. Real problems arise when we fill up on empty calories, neglecting the nutrient rich raw foods. I compare it to putting water in your gas tank and expecting your car to not have problems.

We know that nutrient dense food is the best for our body. Raw food has the most nutrients, fiber, vitamins, photo chemicals, etc. in tact. It is like giving your car the highest octane fuel possible. But assuming that every raw food is great for every body simply because it is raw can create problems for some. Never assume that because something works great for you, it is the only answer for everyone else.

I encourage you to find out what is working for you and what is not. If you are present and really listen to your body, it will tell you. If you suspect a food is giving you a problem, eliminate it for a while. See how you respond when you bring it back in. Let’s also remember, what works for us might not work for others. It is all about discovering your individual needs and realizing other people’s needs might be different.

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  1. Roy Warner wrote on December 22, 2009

    I’m reading your comments on genetic expression and it certainly is true! Then I ponder individuality and notice below the the recipe for Raw Hazelnut and Mint Chocolate Truffles and I ask myself, ‘How can something so delicious not work for every body?’. It would baffle me to no end to find someone who would turn down delectable treats such as these!! But, to each his own….

  2. Isle Dance wrote on December 22, 2009

    Thank you so much for emphasizing this. It’s so true. When people ask me when I first began eating raw, I have to think a bit. Mostly because I was always a great veggie and fruit eater (save for those rebellious years). However, it wasn’t until serious unexpected anaphylactic reactions began, that I began seriously eating ((one)) fresh, unprocessed ingredient at a time…to see what was safe. I was scared. I baby stepped my way through produce one summer. I wasn’t about to voluntarily let my body freak out more than it was already doing on its own. But now, as I look back, I notice sensitivities and reactions that could have been “anaphylactic/allergic” or “food sensitive” or ??? I just wish I knew which was which.

  3. Sarah Schatz - menu plans for limited diets wrote on December 20, 2009

    I really like that you wrote about this topic. I think it’s very important as well. For me, I couldn’t eat many raw foods because I had a hard time digesting them, even though I knew they were better for me. Now my digestion is improving and healing and I am able to eat raw food with much less difficulty.

  4. Roxanne wrote on December 20, 2009

    Susan, you brought up a great point! I discovered raw foods in Bonita Springs,Florida at the Shangri La in the early 1970’s. Alas, it no longer is operating. But the beautiful property remains and is undergoing transformation. I learned a good deal during my stay from the dear, Dr R.J. Cheatham, and many others. One memory was of getting carried away with my newfound favorite food. It was the raw cashew!! We didn’t soak nuts and seeds back then, so I’m not sure this story would have ended differently.
    Anyway, I ate about a cup of those lovely cashew creatures one evening and awoke around 3:00 that morning only to up-chuck the whole lot. WAY too much of a good thing simply didn’t treat my innards very well. Careful out there, folks!!
    Your post reminded me of that scenario so I googled the Shangri La to bring back more memories (of couse, much better ones!)
    Oh,I just ordered a dehydrator like yours…can’t wait to create your wonderful recipes at my home!
    Thanks for all your hard work!!

  5. Diane wrote on December 20, 2009

    Thanks for posting this. This is a concept I’ve always felt was true, but I experienced something recently that may have driven that point home. I can’t say for sure whether there was a direct correlation, but after going about 90% raw fairly abruptly for about 6-8 weeks (i’ve been on a very healthy, natural, mostly plant based diet for years before this), I ended up with a perforated appendix and spent 5 days in the hospital – which could have been a total coincidence, but a curious one given the timing. The old herbalists believe appendicitis is essentially advanced constipation, and despite all my work in that department and the loads of vegetable fiber, things had “slowed down” considerably with my plumbing – concrete would be a good way to describe it. I realized after the fact that I had been doing a lot more nuts and seeds on the raw diet, even though soaked and often sprouted, and I think that was too much for me. It may have had nothing to do with the appendix issue, and possibly even was some kind of major healing crisis, but I did talk to someone else who had appendix inflammation flare-ups when she went raw, which subsided when she returned to more gently cooked food, fish, etc. Very weird. I’m back to doing more simple cooked veggies in this cold winter climate, still green smoothies with superfoods and salads, I’m probably more like 50/50 right now, and I’m doing better, was able to keep my appendix, too. I still love all the raw recipes, and by the time spring rolls around, I’ll probably incorporate more raw again, but I think I’m always going to have to watch it with the nuts, and keep listening to my body. Right now it just wants hot buckwheat cereal, baked squash and steamed collards with coconut oil….


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