The convergence of three events catalyzed my entry into the world of RAW food.

  1. Costco
  2. Living in Las Vegas
  3. Coaching

About a month ago on a fateful Wednesday afternoon, I walked into Costco to buy Kleenex and soap. As I was pushing my cart through the aisles, there it was — the Vita-Mix 5200 demonstration and display. I knew a high quality, high speed blender was crucial for making raw food meals.

The gentleman running the booth was mixing, grinding, and blending up a storm.

I chatted with him about Vita-Mix vs BlendTec (another blender option) but knew that my mind was made up. I was going to be a Vita-Mix gal.

I set one in my cart and the rest is history!

The other event that precipitated my entry into the world of RAW is a lifestyle change from living in Las Vegas. In Vegas, I eat most meals at home. In LA, I ate most meals (except breakfast) out or from prepared food.

The raw world is a little intimidating, especially in California. The food served in raw food restaurants seems complicated, difficult to prepare, and chock-full of nuts. I have a nut allergy (all nuts) so going raw for me seemed nearly impossible.

Which leads me to my third catalyst — coaching. I received some guidance from a raw food extraordinaire, helping me realize a RAW diet was possible. I also got hooked up with a bunch of recipes.

My main questions upon starting were the following:

  • What do I eat and when?
  • How do I maintain a balanced diet?
  • How do I not run out of energy with an active lifestyle?

These are big questions! In the early part of my first week, I had an afternoon of overwhelm — makes sense since I was in the process of transforming my relationship with food and re-learning — what to eat, what types of groceries to buy, and how to prepare them.

The overwhelming feeling passed and later that day, I made a shopping list and drove to the grocery store.

I have been buying a TON of greens.

Generally, here’s what I’ve been eating:

  • Green smoothies — my favorite is a banana, a coconut with the water and coconut meat, and several handfuls of spinach (for more information on green smoothies and an overall introduction to RAW, Green for Life by Victoria Boutenko is a great resource)
  • Salads with raw dressing
  • Pumpkin and sunflower seeds
  • Coconut date rolls
  • Dehydrated crackers/bread with tahini and a little agave; or avocado and tomatoes and sprouts
  • Raw cereal
  • Some raw chocolate

So how has it been for me? After two weeks on a 100% RAW diet, I feel AMAZING. I have loads of energy and haven’t been excessively hungry. I have no need or desire to take a nap during the day. My thinking has been clear and my creativity is flowing. My mind and body are firing on all cylinders.

My relationship with food is changing. I give food more time. A grab and go consumer lifestyle does not apply.

After this experiment, my plan is to eat raw as much as I can with an overall goal of 70% of my diet. I want to learn how to make more RAW food dishes and also improve my preparation skills (like more precise chopping).

America also has to re-learn what to eat, how to shop for food, and how to prepare it. McDonalds or other fast food is no kitchen!

Jamie Oliver’s recent TED talk prize speech talks about this exactly. He shares powerful stories from his anti-obesity project in Huntington, West Virginia, and makes the case for an all-out assault on our ignorance of food.

Within the same seven days, Michelle Obama launched the Let’s Move campaign to combat obesity in the US.

Transformation can happen America! You have to choose to want it first.

6 thoughts on “RAW Food Diet

  1. Pingback: RAW Food Diet | Neelu Jain | Kebab Beysan

  2. Sarah Gerber Stockwell

    Neelu — you totally inspire me to try a raw food diet. I could probably only do it if I convinced Andrew to also! I'd love to hear more!

  3. Neelu Jain

    Sarah! Just start — 1. buy a VitaMix 2. buy this book: Green for Life by Victoria Boutenko. Be an entrepreneur with your health and tweak and refine as you go along!!

    Start the morning with a green smoothie and then a great raw salad for lunch with a raw dressing and nuts/dates/etc. for snacks in between. Then eat whatever the family eats for dinner and you're already over half way there!!

  4. Neelu Jain

    It's not as intimidating as it sounds! Having a few key kitchen tools helps as does access to fresh greens and vegetables. I found the most important piece was being open to establishing a new relationship with food :) — one different than what we were taught growing up or from restaurants and mass market advertising.

  5. Maria

    I have been playing with raw foods for a while now, but have never made the full commitment. This is why you look so amazing. Even your facial structure is different. Anyway, I found an incredible raw foods chef with some very simple recipes online. He even has a home study course with DVDs and books that does not cost an arm and a leg. You can also see some of his recipes on youtube. Enjoy:

  6. Neelu Jain

    Indeed, raw foods and a commitment to yoga, meditation and examining one's actions and intentions on a daily basis are cause for transformation!! Am happy to have found myself on this journey over the last six years. Thank you for the resource link. Helpful to all!
    Good wishes to you,

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