No More Raw Almonds?

Do you know whether the almonds you buy are raw or not?

The label may say 'raw' but because of a new mandate by the Almond Board of California, which oversees almost 100% of the almonds grown and eaten in the United States, will falsely label almonds that have been pasteurized as 'raw'.

The reason for this mandate seems to stem from 2 outbreaks of salmonella in almonds in 2001 and 2004. From my sources, these incidents didn't involve organic almonds. Why mandate all almonds, both conventional and organic? There have been dozens of salmonella or other outbreaks in other meats and vegetables, should we pasteurize and cook all meats and vegetables as well? Is this overkill?

It's widely accepted that foods heated over 108 degrees are not considered raw. Pasteurization heats foods in temperatures that range from 150-280 degrees for varying time periods. The purpose is to kill micro organisms, but unfortunately it's not a selective killer. It also kills the enzymes and nutrients in the food which are then considered 'dead'.

It's a scientific fact that foods heated over 108 degrees lose their nutrient quality and the amount of nutrients available are significantly diminished. Studies also show that these heated foods also transform and mutate and cause distress to the human body, in particular blood cells. Some studies also show carcinogenic effects of heated foods.

In as early as 1930, research was done in Switzerland showing what processed and cooked food did to the leukocytes, the white blood cells in humans. Prior to this research it was noted that upon eating there would be an immediate increase of the white blood cells which was called "digestive leukocytosis." Digestive leukocytosis means that there is a rise in the number of white blood cells after eating.

It was not know why the cells would increase after eating and this increase usually meant that the person had been exposed to a harmful substance such as toxic chemicals, a trauma or infection.

Then at the Institute of Clinical Chemistry, Dr. Paul Kouchakoff found that eating unaltered, raw food or food heated at low temperatures did not cause a reaction in the blood. Kouchakoff also found that if the food was processed or heated beyond a certain temperature it caused a rise in the number of white blood cells. He found that foods that had been refined, homogenized, pasteurized, or preserved causes the greatest increase in white blood cells.

Of course, there's the issue of truth in labeling.

If a food is pasteurized, it certainly isn't raw. The definition of raw (from the Random House dictionary) is:


1. uncooked, as articles of food: a raw carrot.

2. not having undergone processes of preparing, dressing, finishing, refining, or manufacture: raw cotton.


Mislabeling is not only wrong, but can be criminal. Consumers ought to have an informed choice, to know how the food was altered, or not altered. This seems to go against any 'truth in labeling' movement and deceives the public.

The mandate is planned to take effect in the fall of this year (2007). Enjoy your raw and living almonds now, after the fall they may not be available. To contact the Almond Board of California and share your views, visit their web site at:

http://www.almondboard.com/utilities/FORMContactUs.cfm

or call them at: (209) 549-8262

Also, the Weston Price Foundation has put together a great background and list of people to contact.

To your BEST health!

Mark

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Quick, Healthy Snack

Posted on February 28th, 2006 in Uncategorized by Vegan Raw Diet Advocate Comments Off on Quick, Healthy Snack

Here's a quick healthy snack.. especially for those times when you're transitioning and hungry for something sweet.

Banana Treat

  • 1-2 Ripe Bananas
  • 1-2 Soft, Pitted Dates
    or
  • Handful of soaked raisins
  • 1/2-1 Tbs Raw Almond Butter

Mash the bananas in a bowl, add raw almond butter and dates (cut them into small pieces) or soaked raisins and mix together well. Quick, easy and delicious. Enjoy without guilt!

To your best health,

Mark
Vegan and Raw - The Ultimate Diet For Weight Loss, Healthy and Life

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You Know You’re a Raw Foodist When….

Posted on February 28th, 2006 in Uncategorized by Vegan Raw Diet Advocate Comments Off on You Know You’re a Raw Foodist When….
  • You can't STAND the smell of any kind of Fast Food no matter how delicious it's supposed to be and you can detect who has just eaten a greasy burger by noticing the odor of Fast Food Ooze coming out of that person's skin
  • ...your idea of junk food is celery dipped in tahini, agave, cinnamon and cocoa powder....or the best part of your day is when you get to turn on your juicer
  • when the guys in the produce department know your name
  • You know that a "9" on the sticker on the fruit/veggie (example: 94031) means the produce is organic.
  • Your cravings have gone from chocolate chip cookies to a banana wrapped in romaine leafs!
  • when you're packing for a trip and the 1st thing you think of is your juicer.
  • when your friends use organic produce to bribe you into doing things for them
  • When you're buying fruit and the cashier looks at you puzzled and then asks, "You ate all that fruit you bought yesterday?!"
  • ...you start using words that are not in the English dictionary...like RAWESOME.
  • you walk into a natural foods store and can barley find something to eat
  • you make SEXY sounds while eating a mango....

Source: Nature's First Law Forum

Enjoy... to your best health!

Mark

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Why Cheating Doesn’t Work

Posted on February 2nd, 2006 in diet,eating,food,meals,raw diet by Vegan Raw Diet Advocate 1 Comment »

OK, you've decided to "go raw". Congratulations!

But now you have temptations and cravings for cooked and processed foods. Is it ok? Is it acceptable to eat mostly raw?

Sure, eating some cooked/steamed foods is ok, it just depends on your goals and how you feel. Of course, you'll get the most benefits by sticking to as close to a 100% raw diet as possible. Again, it depends on your goals.

Here's the rub. I've been researching the reasons for the cravings and observing my experiences. What I've found is that by eating cooked foods occassionally, you're actually building a desire for more cooked foods. This also applies to spices, salt, garlic, chocolate, sugar and other foods.

If you crave a pizza and eat it, you'll have a desire for more. If you have salt, you'll build a desire for it again. It's a vicious circle that won't end unless you give it up. There are other reasons you crave certain foods. Sometimes your body may be low on a particular mineral that could trigger a craving.

In my experience, just a few weeks after going 100% I lost all desire and taste for cooked foods. It was a natural result of eating raw. I also found that when I tasted something cooked, I then had a desire for it again. After a short time, that desire went away. I also quickly gained a strong and healthy desire for fresh greens, fruits and other vegetables... a desire that's lasted and only grows with time.

My personal goal has never been to label myself 100% raw vegan ... I've chosen to be 100% raw for the way I feel as well and the health benefits. For me, they've been dramatic and I feel grateful for the many benefits I've experienced.

Here's an interesting quote from the great German thinker Goethe:

"Until one is committed, there is hesitancy,
the chance to draw back, always ineffectiveness.
....
That the moment one definitely commits oneself,
then providence moves, too.All sorts of things occur to help one
that would never otherwise have occurred.
A whole stream of events issues from the decision,
raising one's favor all manner of
unforseen incidents and meetings and
material assistance which no man
could have dreamed would come his way.

Whatever you can do or
dream you can, begin it!
Boldness has genius, power
and magic in it."

In essence, until you commit yourself 100% to whatever you desire (in this case, better health through eating a vegan, raw diet) there will always be hesitancy, and you'll never reach your goals, whatever they may be.

Something to think about.

All the best for your health!

Mark
"The Raw Guy"