By Siri Datta
Taken from the book Mini Size Me - The Raw Yoga Revolution
“Let me share my vision with you; I see the world without sickness, sorrow or mental disturbances in which we are living in perfect balance and abundant health and harmony.”
Dr Ann Wigmore Phd (Co-Founder of the Hippocrates Institute)
I couldn't of said that better myself. I, too share this vision, and I hope that at the end of reading this article, you may be inspired to actually taste this experience for yourselves.
So how do you feel right now?
Take a few minutes to close your eyes and tune in to your body with a few breaths. Allow yourself to sense how you truly feel. Do you feel a lively and vibrant superhero? Or a lethargic, tired and heavy frump that is low on energy, or maybe you are just somewhere in between?
If your answer is Superhero, it's likely that you have already taken steps towards aligning your diet with an intake of sun-filled, energy-drenched fresh green nutrition. Which is an excellent start! But if the answer is frump, there is no need to despair. This is where a raw food diet will deliver the medicine, the methods and the manifestation that you require to step into the YOU, that you know is inside, just bursting to get out.
If on a scale of 1 to 10 (1 = zero energy, while 10 = superhero) you feel about 6 or less, then a raw food diet will shake your foundations and raise your rafters into a whole, new, fresh level of vitality and health. At the very least you could gain a few more super powers through this super improved diet.
So what is a raw foods diet and why would you make an effort? What are the benefits? Can I still have a take away on Saturdays? The optimum choice would be no. But wouldn’t you like to be free from the desire for it, if you knew it delivers you no favors? Read on to find out the expanded benefits of a raw lifestyle.
Firstly, the raw lifestyle is a great choice for all those out there who know that inside each of us is a seed of massive life force, and want to tap into it. Layers of disbeliefs, mental blockages, emotional pains, combined with poor nutrition are preventing the full ignition of your life and transformation into Superb Health.
I see raw foods as the best available fuel for the fire of your life.
So what are Raw Foods?
Lets jump right in and go exploring.
Access Exceptional Energy
Our average diet is food diminished by cooking and cut short of the essential enzymes for healthy digestion. Raw foods are nature’s healers, flooded with sunlight, filled to brim with minerals and bountiful with active enzymes. These foods are still alive! Please re-read that sentence. You will be eating food that contains abundant energy within its cellular structure and growing rich with the vital life force known as ‘prana,’ the fuel source of all living things. Could you say the same for the frozen pizza at the back of the fridge, or perhaps a pot noodle?
That is why, when on a raw foods diet nothing is heated beyond 37 degrees, which is the same temperature as our bodies. Above 37 degrees, you will start to kill off all enzyme activity, and deplete the life-force within the food. We need to eat this food while it is bursting with life. It is at this stage that we soak up the life-force from the food to harness its qualities and send it around our bodies. Rather than siphon our own internal energy to digest the already 'dead' food. When we say dead food, we are referring to the standard cooked diet that usually depletes our energy, ultimately resulting in disease and impaired old age.
Some examples of raw foods are fresh fruit and vegetables, that are ideally grown in your own garden. Also within this diet there are sprouted foods (alfalfa and mung beans) nuts, seeds, seaweeds and now the ever popular 'superfoods'.
Hippocrates, an ancient Greek philosopher and the founder of modern medicine, sums up the benefits beautifully:
“So let thy food be thy medicine, and thy medicine be thy food.”
Upping your intake of raw is choosing radiant life!
Return to Nature
A raw lifestyle is a move towards eating as nature intended. Raw foods are foods in their natural unprocessed state, un-treated with heat to prepare them for eating. Today, so many of our food (fuel) sources are heavily processed, filled with chemicals and soaked in sugar. These foods lead to addictions, dependencies and cravings. What many people do not understand is that disease incubates over time. If, on a daily basis we continue to consume un-natural foods, we are supporting a future of disease rather than a future of health. Raw plant prana is nature's gift for rejuvenation.
Reduction of Excess Fat
People are often interested in raw plant foods for its massive weight loss potential, as there are many recorded accounts of stunning physical transformations when going 'Raw'.
David Wolfe, one of the world’s leading authorities on Raw Foods says: “No amount of raw plant food is fattening. Only cooked food is fattening.”
Does this mean bland and unsatisfying food? Not at all! You couldn't be further from the truth. The great news is that some raw fats e.g. avocados can actually help excess weight dissolve. Plus, by embarking on a natural raw plant lifestyle, any weight that is lost, will stay off, as nature returns you to the true weight and shape for you.
Brilliant Skin and Great Long Life
The benefits of going raw and staying raw are endless! You’ll enjoy a clear and glowing complexion, bright shiny eyes, increased libido and beautiful, lustrous hair and nails. People who have experienced acne have found that detoxifying their diet brings dramatic improvements including fewer blemishes. All who go 'raw' will have stunning skin and hair. Try it and see for yourself.
In today’s western world, the average age expectancy for males is 65, 70 for females, but there is endless evidence to show that a raw diet can greatly extend your lifespan.
Dr. Howell a world renown Nutritionist , states that:
“Humans eating an enzyme-less diet use up a tremendous amount of their enzyme potential in lavish secretions of the pancreas and other organs, resulting in a short lifespan 65 years rather than 100 or more.”
Every living being has a fixed enzyme potential which can be prematurely exhausted in a large way through eating cooked and processed foods. Raw plant foods come complete with such massive amounts of live enzymes that you don’t need to use up your “enzyme store” to digest them. We will talk about enzymes later.
Thorough Body and Mind Detox
By going raw you give your body the best chance to offload all those toxins created over years of a cooked, processed diet and stressful living. What we eat profoundly affects the way we think, feel and behave. Life shifts come from changes within. When you take in only pure, natural and healthy foods, you begin to glow within and without. To quote David Wolfe “We are not really human beings, we are human becomings, because we are constantly becoming more.”
A raw food diet can kick start 'becoming more', more wonderful, more physical and much more mental transformation.
The Bliss of Balance
Take a simple and easy initial step towards raw foods by supplementing one of your daily meals with a dark green leafy salad and a tasty dressing. This book promotes the concept that through adding delicious raw alternatives gradually to a standard cooked diet. Both your body and mind will naturally realize the benefits of raw plant foods and develop a preference for these. As you introduce more raw nourishment, you will notice increased life focus, heightened sensory awareness and a greater zest and drive for life.
If your idea of Raw is lettuce, tomatoes and a bit of cucumber you are about to be hugely surprised. Learning about raw cuisine is an expansive and fun journey of creativity and experimentation. Before long, you will be introducing raw nourishment for the healing and vitality of your friends and family.
Seeds of Change
An optimum raw diet contains a high percentage of sprouted seeds. Seeds are often seen as symbols of a powerful and vibrant potential for good reason! If you consume the powerful energy of a plant-in-the-making, this high enzyme vibrancy transforms into positive fuel for your present and future abundant health. The evidence is clear, take a cooked almond seed, plant it in the ground can a tree grow? No way. Plant a sprouted seed and here you have the potential of an almond tree! Our bodies are so blessed with the prana of living foods.
As we began our journey into a raw foods diet we discovered some startling facts and information:
Through the absorption of raw foods only we began to understand that we were changing our bodies from acidic into alkaline. This is the first process that kicks in when beginning a raw diet. We need to understand that the body creates fat cells to take away acid from the vital organs. All the acid that has been stored in your fat cells in your body begins to break down and is passed out through all elimination points (bowels, kidney, skin, lungs and nose).
This acid has come from meat, fish, yeast, mushrooms/fungi, (and the waste products of these living organisms) tea, coffee, dairy, alcohol, tobacco and wheat being the main culprits.
We realised that we were ingesting the energy from these living fruits and vegetables to restore our whole being. Our diet was feeding us energy, not depleting it. We were absorbing the vital life force present in our foods. This added energy jumpstarted the natural detoxing period that blessedly comes from this Raw Nutrition Diet.
We began to experience the detox zone as the acid began to come out. To assist with this vital and necessary phase we began weekly coffee enemas, which we preformed separately in the solitude of our bathroom! Detoxing can reveal itself as spots, colds, lethargy, aches and pains within the body, emotional outbursts, mood swings and sometimes zero energy.
We began noticing that the detoxing came in waves, it certainly was not linear.
After 6 months we noticed that the sugar cravings had subsided, the urge for coffee and bread didn’t turn us crazy anymore and that we were now sold on this way of life and hungered for more experiments and experiences into how far this supreme radiant health could evolve into.
So you have to ask yourself “How do you truly feel?”
What is keeping you from experiencing the lean, healthy and truly energetic body that you deserve?
Are you content to continue feeling lethargic, uncreative and halfhearted in your passions?
I suspect not…. And neither were we!
Benefits of a Raw Food Diet
We are gifted with the intelligence and power to make positive nutritional choices. Too often, we just don’t know how abundant, varied and delicious our food choices could be, leading to choices made through incomplete awareness. Mini Size Me presents you with great trade-ups in food choice and quality that is lush, fresh and fun.
The Downside of a Raw Lifestyle
I have been raw for almost 4 years now, and I can honestly say I have had no bodily reaction to this way of life. Yes I experienced detoxing at the initial stages and of course, that was a challenging phase to pass through, but the pros massively outweigh the cons.
I have only ever discovered 2 main areas of the Raw Challenge:
I understand that some people experience coldness in their bodies, and often feel they can’t stay on a raw diet, once the summer has passed. However, the Director of Lotus Healing in London, Guru Dharam Singh, has advised me that there are certain Chinese herbs that can boost the kidney and spleen energy to prevent one from feeling cold.
I have been advising extra chillis, garlic, ginger and cinnamon to boost the internal heat that is felt inside. Also by boosting the amounts of fats in your diet, you will insulate your internal heat, and keep the cold out as you enter the winter months.
The biggest challenge to overcome is naturally the reaction you get from other people who are not raw. My goodness, you have to be prepared for this one! It’s quite something how other people react. Until one is well versed in the benefits of raw, it can be quite a concept to grasp. Our conditioning is so strong in the belief that we must eat cooked foods that anything else simply is NOT RIGHT. And that’s about the size of it, when questioned why people don’t believe in a raw foods lifestyle, they simply can’t actually put a finger on a very strong or concrete point.
The older generation (parents), really don’t get the idea at first! My parents particularly my mother, felt I was endangering my health, and she was watching very carefully to see whether her daughter was only to waste away. Waste away, you got to be joking! Radiantly bloom into life was the result.
But it was difficulty being at home and maintaining a raw regime. It was a daily chore to redefine my choices and myself. But over time she came round, and now she looks on and agrees, yes there is a tremendous amount of sense to eating raw. I have actually overheard her speaking with her friends. “She only eats salads, and only twice a day, but look at her she obviously knows what she is doing!”
With time and as people begin to see and feel the changes within you, they will come round and not only that, they will be curious to find out more.
This article has been taken from the book “Mini Size Me - A Yoga and Nutritional approach to achieve outstanding Health and Vibrancy ”, written by Siri Datta and Duncan Campbell.
Join The Raw Revolution! Visit the Mini Size Me Programme website for more information
Siri Datta is an International Kundalini Yoga Teacher and Teacher Trainer. Author of Open Your Heart with Kundalini Yoga and the Raw Food and Yoga bible, Mini Size Me.