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The Dish on a Raw Food Diet

It may sound drastic, unrealistic, and plain unfun but the concept of raw food is actually as simple as it gets.

Yanking a watermelon radish out of the ground, washing it off and taking a gracious bite — bam! That’s a raw moment.

To be a raw vegan, one only consumes foods that are uncooked, or if cooked, under 118 degrees. The health benefits for consuming plants, legumes, nuts and seeds this way is to ensure the living enzymes and bioavailable nutrients are at their peak, flourishing like they would still nestled in the Earth. The more often we eat planet-to-table, the more life-giving, transformational, nutrient-dense bliss floods our systems.

It’s a practice as old as the the Earth, but raw food didn’t present itself as a “movement” until around the Industrial Age. Illness was running rampant and a few select health pioneers were looking to yesteryear for a spiritual, healthful connection to food, like the nuns and monks of the 18th century. Raw food ballers like Bernard McFadden, Paul Bragg (yes, Bragg as in Bragg's Apple Cider Vinegar), and Ann Wigmore (the woman who pretty much invented sprouts) all began echoing the commonsense truth that we must return to a much, much purer way of life, with an emphasis on "living foods", aka anything unheated. Today, tinseltown and NYC are dusted with raw vegan restaurants like spirulina atop a green smoothie.

Yet through all of that, why is there still so much hesitation to consuming solely raw foods, when quite clearly, this stuff has been working miracles for mind, body, and spirit since the beginning of time? Why have raw culinary masters such as Matthew Kenney, and raw-spiration gurus such as Rawvana, gone from years of fully raw meals, to what they're now calling "fusion" (a mix between the heated and the totally alive)? 

We can't know for sure, and as always, there's heaps of research and heaps of books out there advocating the benefits of an all raw diet (Spiritual Nutrition, The Live Food Factor, Eating For Beauty), as well as a proportional cooked diet (Anything Ayurveda or TCM, The Gerson Therapy, How Not to Die). But maybe, just maybe, the reason we've swung from one extreme end of the pendulum to the other is because in extreme, we again find balance. And in restriction, we again discover wholesome indulgence. Setting rules and counting calories and following rigid programs and labeling yourself a certain way (the ego loves to give power in names!) will inevitably lead you back to balance. It will lead you home.

And this is why we don't love diets. This is why Sakara Life isn't a one-off program or a quick fix cleanse. Rules are made to be broken, and babycakes, a 24/7 fully raw protocol is certainly a life with a few boundaries, don't you think? Plus, it’s important to note that under heat, some plants (carrots, mushrooms and tomatoes come to mind) release even more nutrients and unlock another dimension of plant heaven for your body.

Plants in their pure form ought to be celebrated, and champions of consuming nature, such as Matthew Kenney and yours truly, are still making sure the rainbow in all its purity is bestowed creatively — and deliciously — to your healing cells. You can even get a taste of the MK ~*~raw vibes~*~ with our new Raw Almond Cacao Tart w/ Manuka Honey + Cashew Creme, delivered with love for breakfast time. 

So, if you’re in the mood to make something for you and your honey (or you some more) and don’t want to turn on the oven because a) that’s where you keep your shoes and b) it is HOT this summer, then decadently delectable options like this, this or DEFINITELY that will answer all dilemmas.

Have you ever experimented in going all-raw? How'd it go?

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