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Raw Food?

I was trying to sprout some garbanzo beans today to make a Pad Thai later this weekend (I love asian food). I looked up the sprouting time on the beans and I came across a website that reminded me of something I hate: Food movements based on feel good theories.

As I read the site advocating an all vegetarian diet and only raw foods I couldn’t help but laugh. I mean I actually understand a vegan diet based on a moral objection to harming animals. That I can understand. I don’t have an objection to harvesting an animal for meat just so long as the entire animal is used, its done in a respectful way and done in need. But what I can’t understand is the thought that raw food is the only food that is good for you.

Fire good! Meat Good!

First, let me talk about meat. I hear people say that after they switched to a vegan diet that they felt better. Fasting is said to produce a similar effect including euphoria. Dying due to starvation-same thing. I’m not saying that you die if you eat only plants but I’m trying to make a point. Feeling better at certain times doesn’t indicate that you are on to something.

Mankind is meant to be omnivorous. We crave meat for a reason (actually many reasons). We don’t have fermenting vat type stomachs that other herbivores have. Our jaws and teeth are set up for both meat and plant matter. Our cells are adapted for omnivorous activity.

Next let me talk about cooking. There is a myth that cooking destroys the nutritional value of food. That may be true in certain cases. But cooking is something we have adapted to. Cooking helps break down the food, remove pathogens and other poisons. Fire has been around for over 250,000 years.

That being said, too much of any one thing is going to be bad. A balanced diet full of all different types of foods in all manner of cooked states is probably best.

1 comment to Raw Food?

  • Mil

    Hi Jason,
    Funny you talk about raw foods. Being a chef, I like to experience all foods and see how it works for me. I actually do a bit of raw foods, mostly a daily green smoothie which has worked for me quite well.

    That said, I must agree with you on the dogma shtick of many of the raw food advocates. Having delved into raw food for many years now because my partner was formerly 100% raw for two years (And can you see me, the chef of the Spanish food restaurant which had an emphasis on pork and seafood, dating this person??), it seems that many of the highly regarded raw food leaders are backing off from the idea of 100% raw.

    I think some people are more suited for a vegetarian diet, and some like me, are not. I also think that because much of our produce, although organic, has not been raised in the most minerally rich soil, the idea of 100% raw can cause deficiencies that can cost you down the line. That’s why many of these leaders are advocating wild food as a fine and smart addition to one’s diet.

    That said, I don’t think there is one solution that fits everyone. That’s why I don’t like dogma and would rather, with the help of teachers like you, find my own way.


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