There’s a lot of confusion about what to eat, especially when it comes to the raw food diet.
Some people say we should avoid all fruit, while others say we should avoid all fat. Where’s the truth?
In this article, we want to build on the information we learned. We’ll take a look at the part that fat plays in our diets. It is extremely important that you understand this key concept in order to succeed with a raw, or mostly plant-based diet and achieve optimal health.
Our Fat Needs
You probably know that humans store body fat and that some body fat is necessary for proper functioning. However, you may think that eating fat is required in order to store body fat. This is a misconception.
Everything a person eats contains some amount of fat. In fact, a natural diet of fruits and vegetables, along with some seeds and nuts or avocado, provides the body all the essential fatty acids it needs.
Oil does not have to be included in the diet. It is simply an incomplete, over-concentrated form of fat.
Fatty foods are complex foods which are hard to digest. A single drop of oil can slow down digestion for two hours.
Eating excessive amount of fat, whether from plant or animal sources, can result in serious health problems such as diabetes, candida, chronic fatigue, low energy levels, hypoglycemia and many others.
It does not matter where the fat comes from; too much fat, even from natural raw foods, will cause health problems.
Some people that attempt to adjust to a raw food diet fail because they think they are eating only “good fat” but are really eating a very high-fat diet. There are some simple reasons for this:
- The average American diet consists of over 45% fat by calories but most health organizations suggest a fat intake of less than 25%. Even vegans and vegetarians frequently fall into this trap.
- Fat is a concentrated way to obtain calories and therefore energy. We have been accustomed to eating concentrated foods such as pasta, oil, butter, bread, and other. On a raw food diet, there are no concentrated foods except fatty foods.
- People often compensate for lack of calories by eating highly concentrated fatty foods.
- The only alternative to fat is fruit. When eating a raw diet, there are two main types of food that provide the energy, in calories, that we need: fruit or fat.
Vegetables simply have so few calories that a person would never be able to eat enough to survive.
We just do not eat enough fruit.
Eating fruit as the basis of our diet is new and often people fail to realize how much fruit it takes to provide energy for an entire day.
The human body requires fuel to operate and you must get that fuel, via calories, from somewhere. Fat has a lot of calories but requires a lot of energy to digest. Plus the health risks associated with a high fat diet simply are not worth it when you can feel better when eating the right foods.
Fruit, on the other hand, is very easy to digest. It provides fast energy and is alkaline-forming. Fruit is a way to obtain simple carbohydrates which match our physiological needs.
Usually, when a person wants to become a raw foodist but fails, they will find themselves eating complex carbohydrates that have been cooked. They simply haven’t learned yet to consume high quantities of sweet fruits to meet their body’s carbohydrate needs.
In other words, a raw food diet that is high in fat is certain to fail! A raw food diet with enough fruit (and green vegetables) will, however, succeed.
So, How Much Fat Is Best?
Most progressive health experts with years of experience promote the same fat requirements year and year, recommending a fat intake of about 10-15% or less. The primates all eat diets that consist of less than 15% fat.
Unless you are allergic to them, do not completely avoid avocados and nuts, just limit yourself to reasonable amounts. This will depend on everybody, but if you’re not very active, it shouldn’t be more than one-half an avocado per day or two ounces (60 grams) of nuts and seeds.
Eat enough fruit to meet your calorie needs – which means eating a LOT of fruit by most people’s standards. Avoid oils including olive, flax seed, coconut butter, canola, peanut and others.
If you do not choose to obtain fat through avocados, nuts and seeds, you can consume two tablespoons of raw nut butter per day.
Eat fat only once each day. During hot weather, include more water-rich foods to keep you hydrated. These include tomatoes, cucumbers, melons, peaches and other juicy fruits.
A lasting change in your diet & eating habits begins with an awareness of what you currently consume. Keep a food log for a week and note the changes that begin to happen as you learn more about the raw food diet.
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