Eating Raw Foods vs. Cooked Foods: Which is Better?

Eating raw foods and adopting raw food diets are trends that are becoming more popular than they’ve ever been.

It seems that every day a new study comes out which reveals more of the health benefits of raw foods as opposed to cooked foods.

Raw food is considered any food that is raw, of course, but also is not cooked to more than 115-118 degrees.

Eating foods in as close as possible to their natural state is the way we were really meant to eat in the first place!

Benefits of Eating Raw Foods

Eating raw foods offers a number of benefits, and while every person’s experience may be a little different, most people who adopt an entirely or mostly (70-85%) raw diet report:

  • having more energy
  • healthier skin and hair
  • an easier time losing or maintaining their weight
  • regular bowel movements
  • better mental clarity
  • an overall sense of well-being

These are exactly the kinds of benefits which most people want to enjoy from their diet, which may explain the popularity of the raw foods movement.

Heating food cooks out the valuable nutrients, vitamins, minerals, fiber, enzymes, and antioxidants!

In general, not only is raw food much easier to digest, but eating raw food also improves digestive health, speeding up the entire process – including metabolizing nutrients for energy and eliminating toxins and other waste products.

Adding a little Good Quality oil or oil and vinegar to your veggies will give you the added benefits of fat-soluble vitamins and important omegas.

Is a Raw Food Diet Really Healthy?

One argument that you might hear against adopting a raw food diet is that most of the common sources of dietary carbohydrates, such as bread and grains, aren’t readily digestible in their raw, unprocessed state.

You might not be eating bread or pasta on a raw food diet, but you’ll be getting all of the carbohydrates your body needs and in a healthier form, and you won’t be adding processed carbs. It’s true that going without carbs for too long can lead to anxiety, fatigue and intense cravings, but choose the 'good carbs'! 

Most fruits and vegetables do have some carbohydrates in them. They also contain sugars, so watch for that. Apples, pears, bananas, broccoli, squash, leafy greens and berries are all great sources of dietary carbohydrates, along with a whole host of other good nutrients.

Lightly cooked rice is a good carb to eat, and nuts also provide carbohydrates.

About the only legitimate argument that I have found as far as cooking or not, is that Lightly cooking some vegetables can break down the cell wall, which makes carotene, a precursor of Vitamin A, and lycopene, an important antioxidant, more available. These nutrients are very important for protecting our cells from environmental damage and certain cancers and heart diseases.

It seems that even cooking veggies for a very short time, like 2 minutes, decreases their Vitamin C content and damages the important enzymes.

Eating raw fruit and vegetables help to fill you up because they have a higher water content and have more ‘bulk’.

This isn’t to say that you can’t reap many of the benefits of raw foods without going on a strict regimen of 100% raw foods. Just try to eat raw as often as possible, and when you do cook your food, you should cook it as lightly as possible to preserve its nutritional benefits.

Whether you’re interested in raw food for its ability to help in weight loss and maintenance, improve mood and mental function or the beauty benefits of healthier hair, skin and nails, it’s hard to argue against the good things that a balanced, healthy diet rich in raw, unprocessed foods can bring to everyone’s life. It’s entirely possible to eat a diet consisting of solely raw food without feeling deprived of anything! This company has quality raw foods at great prices! 

Even though I like to think that I eat pretty healthy, after researching and writing on raw foods, it has made me even more aware that back to nature is always the BEST way to be!
I hope you agree, and we all continue to do just a little bit better each and every day, and live happier and healthier lives!

Salad Goodness !

One of my latest great salads!

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