The raw vegan diet is an amalgamation of two diets: the raw food diet and the vegan diet. It’s a focus on all non-animal produce but eating as much raw food as possible.
There are various reasons why people will choose to follow the raw vegan diet. Some believe that it is far healthier than any other diet out there, taking a leaf from the likes of Gwyneth Paltrow. Others believe that it is the best way to get all the nutrients, while some just want to avoid any animal products because of their beliefs or feelings.
It’s worth noting that this isn’t an easy diet to follow. This is one of those that requires persistence, motivation, and goals. Moving onto this diet is hard for so many, and without strong beliefs, people end up going back to their old habits.
It can be an extremely healthy option. Sure, some people worry about not getting enough of certain nutrients, especially protein, but there are ways around common issues.
It’s time to debunk the myths and find the truths. Here’s all you need to know about sticking to the raw vegan diet.
Wait, Tell Me More About This Raw Vegan Diet
Before you even contemplate sticking to it, you need to know as much as possible about it. What does it entail?
Well, it’s one of the strictest diets out there. Not only are you following a vegan lifestyle, but you’re also focusing on foods that are raw. That means not getting anything cooked. The food is in its original state.
The belief is that food in this state is more nutritious. Freezing and cooking food leads to the destruction of some of the nutrients. Your body can already struggle to get some nutrients, so destroying some of them makes it harder. You can end up deficient in nutrients just because of the cooking process you’ve chosen. Why do that when the natural state is the best way of getting food?
If you’re going to cook the food, it needs to be semi-cooked. And then, you’ll want to cook in the healthier options like boiling and grilling. You don’t want to start adding extra fat to the food where possible. You don’t want to cook anything above 118F.
That’s great, but doesn’t this limit your food choices?
Well, the vegan diet takes out most of the foods that will require cooking anyway. You’ve already gotten rid of the meats and eggs. So, you’re focusing on fruits, vegetables, grains, legumes, and nuts as much as possible. When it comes to the grains and legumes, you can only have the sprouts on this diet. Remember, you can’t cook them, and even the most passionate of raw food diet followers won’t tell you to eat raw mature legumes or grains!
Now you see how strict it is, it’s time to figure out how to follow it. Just how do you make it easier to stick to the diet for the rest of your life?
Start with Your Reasons
The best thing to do is to set your reasons for following this diet. Do you think it’s a great weight loss diet? Maybe you’re looking for something that will improve your health considerably. You could also just want to follow the latest celebrity diet.
I’ll tell you now that if you’re not following this diet for the right reasons—your health or moral beliefs—then you will find it a lot harder to stick to. If this is a current fad or phase, you’ll find that following the diet is more hassle than it’s worth. That’s not to say your reasons are bad or that you shouldn’t give it a shot, but you do need to go into this with all your heart.
There are no half measures here. If you want to remain focused, you need to make your reasons clear. These reasons will help you set your goals, and they’ll be there to look back over when you start to lose motivation.
When it does get hard—and it will—and you find that your reason was that your celebrity crush was following the diet, you’ll be more inclined to give it up. After all, was it something you wanted to do or just because you wanted to be like your current celebrity crush?
If you find that your reasons were to improve your health, you’ll be more inclined to stick with it. You want the best for your health, and you know that following it is the best thing for you. There’s that extra push—that extra voice—telling you that you need to stick with this.
Where your beliefs are involved, your reasons will be strong. You’ll find it much easier to make the best choices to stick within the raw food diet limitations. However, do keep track on whether your beliefs are still the same. They can change as we get older and there’s no need to feel ashamed of that.
Stop Focusing on the Negatives
As we get into a diet, we tend to start looking at all the things that we can’t have. We lose track of our reasons, as we look back at all the foods that we once enjoyed and are no longer allowed.
The more we tell ourselves no, the more we want those foods. If you’ve followed any diet with limitations, you’ll find that telling yourself no repeatedly is counterproductive. You’re more likely to binge on those foods instead of sticking to your diet, regardless of your morals, beliefs, or reasons.
Therefore, you need to stop focusing on those negatives. Stop telling yourself no and focus on the foods that you can eat. Search for interesting and exciting recipes that will allow you to enjoy your meals.
The more you focus on the positives, the better you will feel for your diet. The easier it will be to stick to your morals and do the best thing for your health. You’ll stop craving the bad stuff or the disallowed stuff all the time and start craving the food that you know you can have.
You’ll even be able to focus on finding ways to make the allowed food more fun. There’s this want to make it exciting—knowing that it is possible because there’s so much great food that you can eat.
Find Ways to Work Eating Out into Your Diet
When it comes to the raw vegan diet, eating out can be a pain. But it doesn’t have to be something you can’t do at all. This part is going to be essential to sticking to this diet for the rest of your life.
Let’s start by looking for vegan restaurants—and there are many new options cropping up around the world. These restaurants initially focus on the vegan side of things, but they will also cater to the raw foodies out there. There will be plenty of delicious salads and sandwiches available to enjoy.
Now, what about the restaurants that your friends want to go to that aren’t vegan? There’s nothing stopping you from going except you. One of the first things you can do is call the restaurant and find out if there is anything on offer for your lifestyle. Explain that you’ll be coming as a group, but you’d like to know if there are raw vegan options.
Some restaurants won’t be able to tell you right away. You may not be calling when the best chefs are in. You may need to wait until you get there. This could be a great chance to discuss things with the chef and find out if they are willing to make a few changes to an item to work in with your raw vegan diet. You’ll be surprised at how creative and willing they are to try a few things.
Get the Right Equipment in the House
Of course, most of your meals will be done at home. It’s time to make a few changes to the equipment that you have in your kitchen so you can focus on the raw food diet.
Some of the common equipment includes the likes of a dehydrator, a juicer, a spiralizer, and even a blender. You’ll want enough equipment to make a range of smoothies and juices and stuff create interestingly shaped vegetables and fruits for your salads and dishes.
Recipes books are also essential for your kitchen. These are great for getting a few ideas to keep your meals interesting. You may even want to get an app or two to help you with your new vegan lifestyle.
And of course, having the right type of food is essential. Food is your equipment. Get rid of the food that you’re not allowed on a diet, so you don’t keep looking at it and wishing you could have it. Stock up on everything that you can have, especially fruit, vegetables, and nuts. You’ll find dried fruit and nuts are excellent staples for when you need something quick and easy just to snack on. They’re sweet enough while being healthy just to kick that craving.
Know What Your Cravings Mean
We tend to get cravings when our emotions drop. There are certain feelings that we get that kick off certain cravings.
For example, some people crave sugar when they’re thirsty. It’s important to learn these cues, so you can take care of your cravings as quickly as possible. When you learn your cravings, you’ll find it much easier to counter them with what you need. This helps to stop the thoughts that you can’t have what you think you want.
You’ll be surprised at the effect a lack of water and sleep has on our bodies. When we get tired, we want more fatty food or hot, cooked meals. When we’re thirsty, we can want sugar, cheese, and even milk.
The individual foods aren’t what we need. But we may need something from one of the food groups. We may need something with more protein or fat in, so those nuts could come in handy.
Just make sure your water intake and sleep are focused on. When you get them in the balance, you’ll find controlling your cravings much easier.
Gather Yourself with Support
We can’t do something like this alone. We need people around us with similar mentalities—or at least people who are going to support us in our chosen lifestyles. There is nothing worse than having someone around us who keeps pushing the foods that we’re not allowed to us.
When there are people in your life questioning why you’re on a diet, you need to decide whether they’re just interested or are trying to sabotage your efforts. Some people will be interested. They’ll just want to know more about it and ways that they can support you. This could be the case if they’re inviting you to dinner and want to know more about what they could make you.
But there are people out there who want to force you to conform to society. They find your diet a burden, and they’re not interested in why you’re doing this. When they invite you for food, they want to make sure you’ll be good company for them. These aren’t the types of people you want in your life.
Finding others who follow the raw vegan diet is important. This is especially the case when it comes to living with people. There are plenty of support groups online, and you could even find groups within your local area to meet local people who are interested.
With all the above tips, you will find it easier to stick to your raw vegan diet. This isn’t going to be easy, and you won’t find it an overnight success. It’s going to take some hard work and determination. If you’re willing to put that in, you will find it easier to stick with for the rest of your life.