Attack on the Raw Food Diet?

Posted on August 21st, 2009 in children,raw diet,raw food,raw vegan diet,vegan diet by Vegan Raw Diet Advocate
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Several times this past week I have been attacked for making suggestions and encouraging the raw food diet. One in particular was from a 'fitness professional' that lashed out at my so called criticism and promptly removed my comments from her blog.

What was my crime?

It was the suggestion to lower or eliminate processed and animal foods from your diet. And in one case, suggesting more fruit snacks for a child over 'healthy snacks' like beef jerky's, crackers, string cheese sticks, milk, chocolate peanut butter, deli roll up meat, laughing cow cheese, and yogurt among other foods. To be fair, there were a few fruits mentioned in the list of healthy snacks (a banana, apple slices, grapes, nectarines), but the majority were the processed foods mentioned above.

Another comment was about the detriments of dairy products, particularly milk in response to a question asking 'what's so bad about milk?'. That comment, also quickly removed, discussed the diseases associated with dairy products including: Crohn's Disease, Asthma, Early Sexual Maturation, Early Breast Growth, Diabetes, Breast Cancer, Colon Cancer, Leukemia, ADD or ADHD, Prostate Cancer, Osteoporosis, Arthritis, Sinuses, Autoimmune Disease, Lung Cancer, Childhood Anemia, Diarrhea & Constipation among others and answered the question. It also discussed how milk is good for calves, but they stop drinking it at about 6-8 months and never drink it again. As well as giving examples of plant based vegetables and nuts that have high amounts of calcium naturally rather than fortified like milk and other dairy products. It also provided a reference to notmilk.com for additional information on the topic.

Interestingly, all the other comments on the blog were glowing with praise on the 'healthy' snack suggestions mentioned above. Not one comment challenging anything, except for mine.

But when someone comes along and mentions 'the king (or queen in this case) isn't wearing any clothes', instead of a spirited discussion on the pros and cons of processed and animal foods, the messenger is quickly dismissed and criticized in private. My message was well written and respectful, asking the question 'why so much processed food'?

Interesting how the messenger was eliminated, but the real question was never answered. There was no reply to the question of eating processed and animal foods, only a sharp criticism and quick removal of the topic. The comment 'everyone else wrote glowing praises and you were the only one critical' stood out in her email to me. 'find someone else to bother' was the reply.

This reaction isn't uncommon from most people and it's simple to explain.

You see, when you decide to keep a closed mind on a subject, like health and food in this case, any suggestion to an alternate way of eating is like an attack. Especially when you are promoting these same beliefs to thousands of blog visitors and clients every day. And in this case, your income may depend on it too.

And this happens in everyday life as well. When you make a suggestion or answer a question about health or wellness, your answer relating to fruits and vegetables, or the raw food diet, is often quickly dismissed as unrealistic or an attack.

But here's the rub.

If you keep an open mind to seeking what is true, and not just defending your position or current beliefs, you allow yourself to explore and research what's best for you and your family.

It may be that you decide the 'SAD' diet is the best for you. You may decide it's a vegan diet or a vegetarian diet. Maybe a diet of purely animal foods or just processed foods. Or you may decide it's a natural raw food diet.

What this does is allow you to be open to alternate ways of eating and most importantly, feeling your best always and achieving optimal health for you and your family. Sticking to the same beliefs you've always had, were passed on from your family, relatives or spouse, or from society in general (sometimes the most dangerous to your health), keeps you 'stuck' in your ways and ready to attack anyone that challenges them. It's natural to stand up for something, especially when it's something you've been following for a long time. Or sometimes your income depends on it and you allow fear to take over.

And here's the irony.

Following a mainly natural, fresh and whole food diet allows you to naturally find your way, allows you to keep an open mind, be at peace and be open to new ideas that can enhance your life. You're less likely to 'lash out' at someone and be happy to have a peaceful discussion about any topic without feeling the need to be defensive. Many of the additives in processed foods affect your nervous system and brain, hormones from animal foods also affect your body in many ways that often cause you to be 'edgy'. Remove them and a calm, peaceful manner comes about you like something you've never felt before. It's truly amazing and wonderful and normally not possible with the toxins found in cooked and processed foods.

I also know this from personal experience as well. I often lashed out at others and had a temper at times. I didn't know it had to do with what I was eating until after I transitioned to a raw food diet. It was like night and day, but I wouldn't have noticed it unless I transitioned.

Not until you are 'cleaned out' of the toxins will you be able to truly feel the effects of what you eat. I experienced this recently when testing a raw and vegan dehydrated food to review that immediately caused me to have blurry vision and an upset stomach. A year ago this didn't happen, 6 months ago this didn't happen. Only when you've really cleaned out will your body react in this way, and it should. This is how our body was designed, to give you signals of what is good and not good for your body. But without removing all the processed and cooked foods, you'll never feel the signals and allow you to respond. And often it's too late to be able to respond when you're not cleaned out. How many people do you know that one day were fine and the next day they're in the hospital?

It saddens me to watch so many around me complain about the same ailments every week resulting in visiting the doctor regularly, only to continue with those complaints again soon after the original symptoms are gone. It's not that the knowledge of why more fresh fruits, vegetables and some nuts and seeds help you (it's everywhere!), it's the decision to be open to learning more about it, and actually trying it for yourself. And not only for a few days, but for a month or longer. Something from a seminar I went to back in 1990 sticks in my mind... 'you can always go back to eating the way you did if you don't feel better'. If eating more fruits and veggies don't allow you to feel better after a month, you can always go back to eating the processed and cooked foods and see the difference for yourself. But if you don't honestly try, you'll never know, right?

Also, your outlook on life shifts to focus more on love and peace, not judgement and reaction. You are more at peace, you learn to follow your instincts, truly enjoy life, focus on the good and don't let things bother you. You do what you love and it doesn't matter what others say, you follow the truth and your passions. You also feel great and avoid the illnesses and issues most everyone in our society today faces due to their choices of what they put in and onto their bodies.

Some may say this is challenging in today's society. The quote from Margaret Mead 'It is easier to change a man's religion than to change his diet" comes to mind.

I call it seeking the truth and sharing your experiences and knowledge to help others and encourages me to continue as well. And eating a raw food diet is surprisingly simple. The ultimate 'fast food'. If you're ready to learn, the teacher will be waiting. But you have to be ready and open to seek the truth and you'll find it.

'the truth will set you free'

Let me know what you think by posting a comment below!

Peace and all good things, to your best health!

Mark

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23 Responses to 'Attack on the Raw Food Diet?'

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  1. debra said,

    on August 21st, 2009 at 2:20 pm

    I received your email referring to this subject. I have been raw for 21 days and loving. In the past I have tired the macrobiotic way of life and vegan way of life, never making it past 14 days. With the raw way of life I am having success. My diabetes is normalizing and at first I had lost weight. But after following your sites I realized I was partaking of to many fats. I have now been avoiding recipes made with so many nuts. So I know I will see more weight loss.
    About 1 hour ago I was craving a hamburger so I drove to my local drive thru and bought one and within 30 minutes my body rejected it (you know what I mean) wow what a confirmation that putting these horrible foods into our system is not what our bodies want. I learned my lesson. Next time a old way of eating is craving my body I will know to reach for a piece of fruit or veggie, my body will be much happier.
    I think people attack because they are uneducated about the subject at hand. I also feel when bloggers delete informational comments from their readers that they are not in agreement with it really is a minus for their readership.Plus in my mind it is some form of control in that they do not want to expose their readers to a different thought process other than that of the blogger, just plain selfish in my opinion. I am glad I found your sites because I have learned so much more about a raw way of life that makes sense to me and your sites have answered issues of concern I had from various books that I have read.
    Debra in the raw and loving it!

  2. Cecilia said,

    on August 21st, 2009 at 2:48 pm

    I thought your site was helpful, informative and not judgmental. Perhaps in the future, I can commit myself. I really appreciate you having something like this out there.

  3. Lati said,

    on August 21st, 2009 at 3:10 pm

    Thanks for the comments, I have just started on the raw journey and whilst I am enjoying it mostly. It’s definately the others who have the difficulty. After 2 weeks of raw breakfast and lunch I felt so much better. Sadly haven’t managed the whole day yet. No one at home wants to join me. I do get lonely eating on my own. so keep up the inspiration please.

  4. Kevin BAker said,

    on August 21st, 2009 at 3:21 pm

    Dear Mark,

    Finding the raw diet was to me like finding a hidden treasure that had been sort after for a lifetime. And your site sings it’s praises with true glory and dignity.

    Long live Mark!

  5. Alana said,

    on August 21st, 2009 at 6:06 pm

    I have just begun a new diet eliminating meat, dairy and bread, pasta etc. I eat raw food for breakfast and lunch and have a vegetarian cooked dinner. My skin is healthy, I have lost 3 kg in a week and a half and I feel great.
    I have wanted to do this for years but thought changing my habits and going without the above foods would be too difficult.
    I’ve found it surprisingly easy, there are plenty of options and I never go hungry. I have just replaced processed foods with natural ones.

  6. Lindsay said,

    on August 22nd, 2009 at 1:56 am

    Hi Mark,
    I think its great that you’re confident enough in the raw diet to challenge mainstream beliefs. I am aiming for a raw lifestyle and have been for a couple of years. But the first time I heard of it, it sounded crazy and unbalanced. Now it seems like the most balanced and natural way to eat. If it weren’t for people like you who are passionate enough about this lifestyle to speak out, I would still be trying to figure out how to fix my ailments with pills and creams. Thankyou for living your truth!

  7. A-ron said,

    on September 7th, 2009 at 7:46 am

    Funny, I was just reading a blog post by someone I used to respect on how eating “more” saturated fat is good for you, with the source of the extra saturated fat coming from red meat. The specific focus was on reducing mid section body fat. I made a comment contrary to the posters beliefs, touting the simplicity of a raw vegan diet, and it was rejected, just like yours was.

    The post was actually written by doctors, who now believe, through new “research”, that eating an all meat diet high in saturated fat reduces body fat around the mid section, thus making one healthy. They’re pretty much patting themselves on the back for discovering the cure for obesity. But what they failed to mention, or even take into account, is the possible detriments of eating an all meat diet, especially with regards to healthy digestion. I’m sure one could prove, with enough diligence, that eating small quantities of cyanide has some health benefit.

    I have disdain for the medical profession because they have failed to answer the right questions, which Dr. Graham has in just a few pages of a fairly short book.

  8. Maria said,

    on December 22nd, 2009 at 10:53 pm

    Perhaps you got attacked because alot of your content is defensive and/or condescending. Alot of the pages have alot of what not to eat and all the really terrible reasons why but perhaps you just need to focus on the positive and you won’t attract the negative.


  9. on December 22nd, 2009 at 11:23 pm

    Hi Maria, Thanks for your comment. Most bloggers would probably just delete your comment since it was critical, but I appreciate your thoughts. In reviewing many of the stories on the site, I can’t say that I agree with your assessment since everything seems to be upbeat. Can you point some out? I believe you do have to mention both what to eat and what not to eat because many folks look at eating that way. Some look for what not to eat and others the opposite. I agree with you on attraction and believe in attracting what you focus on, although I can’t say I agree with that here either since the incident was focused at another site (not this one) and was poised as questions, not accusations or negatives. A simple question to support the author’s statements. It was an interesting experience regardless. I believe that if you’re willing to make a public statement about something, you can certain support it with a reason of some kind. So if you attack in return instead of have a civil conversation in response, there is more to it than just asking the question. What about the question? What do you think?

  10. Michelle said,

    on January 5th, 2010 at 7:05 pm

    Okay my daughter has been on this diet well over 6 months and claims she feels great. My concern is she has lost too much weight. She weighs 110 on a 5foot 5in frame and looks anorexic with bones sticking out every where and always cold and no longer menstrates. How can this be healthy???? Help! a concerned mom. Where does the protein come from in this diet of veggies and fruit? please help before she collapses. She is 19 years old.


  11. on January 8th, 2010 at 11:47 pm

    Thanks for your comment Michelle. Not knowing your daughter’s situation, background or diet, it’s hard to make a suggestion, although this I can say. Losing weight at the beginning when switching to a raw diet is common. It is the body detoxing and shedding accumulated toxins. Over time, your body will start to normalize to its optimal weight by itself. Sometimes this is quick, sometimes it’s longer… it all depends on your body, your diet and many other factors. It’s very hard to tell. You don’t need to eat more or change anything, it’s a normal part of the process. I went through the same situation when I first switched. I lost a great deal of weight and it took a few years to normalize without doing anything different, meaning no change in diet, and my weight did normalize by itself.

    Protein is not an issue, many fruits and vegetables have an abundance of protein (source). Most Americans eat too much protein and it’s a problem. And the protein found in animal products, and that are heated, are very hard to assimilate and most of that protein is wasted. See http://www.theproteinmyth.com.

    How she feels is a good indication of her health, appearances will change over time. Of course, please consult a health professional about any serious health issues. Hope this helps and all the best!

  12. az said,

    on February 20th, 2010 at 7:12 pm

    This is my first time to your site, and of course the first blog I’ve read. I like it.

    Re: Michelle – not being full vegan or raw myself I have not the experience to really give any advice except to restate what I’ve read.

    It seems common that people struggle to get enough calories from just fruit and veg without including a lot of high fat foods (which would not be a good thing even if they’re healthy fats), ie. my usual daily spread includes a melon or 2, 6+ bananas in a smoothie with a punnet of strawbs and half a lettuce, a handful of other fruits (before some cooked food and veg for dinner +snacks). Really hard to reach the 2000+ calories I need even when I’m not active…

    Bottom line – I agree that it’s important if she’s feeling great! If anything were missing she’d start feeling tired, groggy, moody, sick etc. Good on her, and good on you for looking out for her.

  13. Lisa said,

    on March 22nd, 2010 at 12:16 pm

    This site is full of great material! Am looking to changing to a vegan lifestyle, with hopes of going 100% raw in the near future. It is so hard when there is no support in the household, but I am determined this time. At 47 years, I ain’t getting any younger and it shows horribly.

    When I get back home from a brief trip I am beginning with adding breakfast and lunch raw, then dinner with my husband. But hope to move into vegan dinners, though cooked, within the week.

    I will be visiting your site often as I transform myself.


  14. on April 22nd, 2010 at 2:27 pm

    Hi Mark I’m interested in the raw food diet, but I don’t know
    how or where to start.

  15. zoe said,

    on May 22nd, 2010 at 7:35 pm

    I’ve just started the 100% raw food diet for about 2 weeks n it’s suprising simple n delicious…..i eat only fresh fruit n veggies n i don feel so irritated anymore although still a little…The weird thing is that my weight didn change but my face looks more thinner


  16. on May 23rd, 2010 at 9:40 pm

    Sure thing, the first place I’d recommend starting is to research as much as you can. Learn as much as you can. Some of the books on our site hear would be a good start, especially the Live Food Factor. You can start by adding more fresh fruits and veggies into your diet, and increase the percentage regularly getting higher until the level you’re comfortable with. Having a few favorite raw meals you can make quickly and easily is also important and helps alot when transitioning. Let me know how I can help you! Mark


  17. on May 23rd, 2010 at 9:45 pm

    Hi Zoe, great to hear of your progress and experiences. Sure thing, often the weight may not change for some time, depending on what you’ve done in the past, your activity level and many other factors. No worries though, eventually your body will find its optimal weight and adjust if you follow the raw food diet. Thanks for sharing and let us know how you’re progressing and if we can help! Mark

  18. Vegandynamics said,

    on May 28th, 2010 at 10:59 am

    I am impressed with your thoughts and intrigued with this notion of a raw food diet. I have been practicing the vegan diet and lifestyle with earnest since Christmas 09. I’ve lost 50 pounds and am certain I should/can lose another 50 pounds. Over the past 4 weeks, I’ve been stuck at my current weight. As a result, I’m questioning my eating patterns; I know there is a “next” step in my evolution. Perhaps it is to embrace the raw food way of living.

    I am curious about meal plans…I feel I need a template; or, perhaps better stated, to know what the “best practices” are relative to this way of living.

    By the way, I spoke with a personal trainer last night. When I told her I was vegan, I thought she was going to fall out of her chair. And then she asked me the protein question; I knew then that she knows very little about food. And when she mentioned that whey was a healthy, vital source of protein, I almost fell out of my chair.

    Thank you for your insight. I will be coming back to you often.

  19. Prana Yoga said,

    on July 24th, 2010 at 1:47 pm

    Totally agree with what you are saying. Can I add this to my blog with references. I’ve stopped meat and diary on and off for years.
    I’m three weeks into 80/90% raw food diet. Feel great, my skin I’d clear, my energy is consistent I’m happy. Many people don’t understand. My next blog is about thexreactions of others. I think it scares some people. It makes people question themselves and can leave them feeling threatened. Such a shame when people could be free from many illnesses. I teach yoga and it is no different when some people come to class and freak out.
    All you can do is be open and there for people if they ever feel ready to change.

  20. Nic said,

    on September 24th, 2010 at 12:26 pm

    I just came across your site through a facebook search for vegan/raw recipies as I’m trying to go back to more raw lifestyle. A few years back I got into it 100%…within a WEEK I felt amazing…Although skeptical of the bliss one feels at consuming all raw/veg life I read in the “Get Fresh” magazine I found at my local co-op, I decided for the sake of my Autoimmune Disease and positive research I read into the benefits of eating Raw reversing it, figured….What the heck. Couldn’t hurt.

    That following week I became a believer….however one day (dreadded) I had totally processed food, becuase of going to a job orientation (they were kind to provide lunch) and running late for work I had no time to make my packed green smoothie. I ate the processed *crap* and within 20 minutes I was down for the count. I walked out of the orientation feeling like I had been on a drinking binge for three days. My mood went from pollyanna perky to down right evil. And I got all over sick and miserable.

    Now I’m trying to go back to it but just at 80-20%…Any ideas on how I can get more iron into my diet? I’m getting a little sick of raisins.

    Keep up the great work! Dont sweat the condemnation from processed poeple. It’s a work in progress…like all situations in life we dont know where someone is coming from. Best to let example lead the way.

    I lost 15#’s so far on this kickstart…the same people who tell me I’m nuts for doing this raw thing….complimented me on it…”How did you do it?” I say…”Same thing you praise me for..you poke fun and disagree with me.” and wink.

  21. Nic said,

    on September 24th, 2010 at 12:29 pm

    …?: The book Life Food Factor…can I pick that up at my local Borders? I LOVE books! Any books anyone can recommend I’m totally open! Thanks!


  22. on September 24th, 2010 at 12:40 pm

    Hey Nic! Sure thing, check out FitnessBookstore.com, Live Food Factor isn’t in local bookstores. Great resource on raw for all levels, highly recommend it! All the best :)

  23. Nic said,

    on September 24th, 2010 at 1:03 pm

    Michelle, if you are still reading this…I’d highly recommend a checkup with bloodwork to check for cancer or Metabolic/Thyroid issues. Sorry to say the C-word but I’m just being realistic.
    Next….Try to be open to your daughter’s choices. Take her to a restaurant that caters to the Raw/Vegan lifestyle…or some natural food stores have kitchens where you can order made food and either sit and eat it or take it home/lunch. Ask her questions that have her explain to you what this lifestyle is all about and be open to it. If after 20 minutes of eating you notice anything out of the ordinary about her (she ate her food like a bird or barely touched it…..she rushed to the bathroom shortly after scarfing down her spinach avacado sprout wrap)…its’ a good idea to seek professional help. If she didn’t and you spend the day noshing on some good tomato cucumber sandwich and broccoli carrot salad..and doing a little educational raw food book shopping…Then dont sweat it and take it as an opportunity to learn about her new lifestyle choices.