When examining the daily life of a drug addict, it’s safe to say there is a common thread; they are always on the lookout for their next “fix”. Their lives run from stimulation to stimulation, whether through smoking cigarettes, drinking alcohol, or harder drugs.

When studying the behaviour of people eating the standard American Diet, the search for relief and the need of stimulation is also a constant factor. Drinking coffee first thing in the morning? Croissants and/or bacon for breakfast? Chicken sandwich for lunch plus a protein bar for dessert? More stimulants throughout the day in the form of fizzy drinks and processed snacks. Sirloin steak and wine for dinner (also stimulants), more desserts in the form of pudding, and so it goes…

As you can see, as in the lives of drug addicts, people eating the standard western diet are also ON DRUGS ALL THE TIME. You could argue that smoking heroin is not the same as eating bread, but actually, did you know that bread contains chemical structures that closely mimic opium, especially those made of wheat?

Furthermore, it has been shown that the digestion of grain and dairy generates opioid-like compounds that cause mental derangement when they reach the brain. [1]

Are we then surprised to find that, just like drug addicts who experience massive mental challenges as a result of their drug consumption, people who eat a western diet also suffer from huge mental health issues – partly resulting from their choice of food and beverages?

People become addicted to certain foods, such as grain products and meats among others, largely due to their stimulating effects. Stimulation is a forced draught upon the energies of the body, if it is long continued or often repeated, exhaustion is the result.

Stimulation and irritation are identical phenomena. The only difference between the stimulation of small doses and the irritation of large doses is that of degree, not kind.

If the causes of intoxication/irritation as a consequence of living the wrong lifestyle remain in force and the body can’t cope with it, the body initiates a responsive crisis called inflammation, for it involves pain; which could lead to ulcers and cancers, as well as other serious diseases.

By contrast, raw fruit and vegetables DO NOT stimulate, which explains why so many people experience huge health benefits when adopting raw, or mostly raw, plant based diets – including overcoming many mental health challenges.

Scientific studies done on raw vegan diets are scarce because this diet is still relatively new to the mainstream, but we do have strong scientific evidence about the benefits of eating raw for our mental health, so much so, that these studies have made the top headline on many news outlets around the world. [2][3][4][5]

On one of these studies, researchers at the University of Otago in New Zealand found that people who eat more raw fruits and vegetables experience fewer depressive symptoms, a higher positive mood, and greater life satisfaction. The key word here is raw they said!

The researchers also found that people who eat more processed fruits and vegetables (cooked or canned) than is typical showed some improvement in positive mood, but did not experience less depression or greater life satisfaction.

Which begs another question: if the mounting scientific evidence of eating raw foods and its positive effect on our mental wellbeing is so clear, why have none of these studies made it onto the Nutrition Facts.org website? Could it be because it undermines the idea that cooked food diets are more effective than raw vegan diets, something that we have known in Natural Hygiene for a long time? I don’t know, but it feels rather suspicious.

My personal experience of overcoming mental health issues after changing my diet to raw foods has been overwhelmingly positive. At the turn of the millennium I achieved one of my childhood dreams: becoming one of the biggest DJs in the world, and not only a DJ, I was a successful electronic music producer too, selling hundreds of thousands of records; still, I suffered from long term chronic depression.

It was difficult to understand why I felt down since nothing in my life appeared to be wrong at that point. Back in the 1990s, I had a successful career in music and my family was perfectly healthy. I had not studied nor done any health research at that point, but I instinctively knew that something “chemical”  was causing my depression.

Chemical indeed; after transitioning my diet to raw foods in 2008, my chronic depression disappeared WITHIN DAYS! I still remember this time period as if it was yesterday; it was one the most wonderful moments I have ever experienced. How can such a straightforward change of diet make such a huge impact on one’s emotional being, without the need for medication or therapy? TRULY AMAZING!

Have you heard the expression ‘when you find yourself in a hole, the first thing to do is stop digging’? In the same way drug addicts cannot overcome their mental health challenges without first quitting the substances they are addicted to; I believe people also should look at considerably improving their diet in order to best deal with their mental health issues.

If you keep stuffing yourself with cooked, processed, and refined foods, no psychologist, psychiatrist, therapist, pill, or doctor will be able to help, because food is all too often the root cause of this disease.

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Ariel Belloso

Ariel Belloso is a writer who transformed his health through the power of raw food. The former DJ and music producer's life changed forever in 2001, when his mother was diagnosed with leukaemia. Already a keen nutrition researcher, Ariel calculated that eating a raw, plant based diet could help his mother overcome her cancer. This became his motivation to learn more about natural health and the raw food lifestyle. Following her son's advice, not only did Ariel’s mother beat her cancer, she recently celebrated her 85th birthday! Using the knowledge gained from his years of ongoing study into natural health, Ariel has also managed to overcome several serious health issues himself, as well as helping many others regain their health and improve their quality of life. Ariel has written 5 books on the subject of natural health, nutrition, and fitness.

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