How Can A Raw Food Diet Benefit You?

Raw Food Health Survey Results

How can a raw food diet benefit you? What are the most common raw food diet benefits as reported by long-term raw foodists? If YOU eat a raw food diet, what are you likely to experience? This article summarises the findings of three key studies and lists the most frequently verified benefits.

Unfortunately there have been few serious studies undertaking research into the raw food diet. These three are the best I’ve come across after much searching. Please contact me if you know of other helpful studies specific to the raw food diet.

Note that some of the most common raw food diet benefits have to do with the raw foodist’s sense of health and wellbeing. These are difficult to quantitatively measure and compare with previous states, but are reported with a high frequency.

On the other hand, raw food diet health risks are more easily measured and defined. These can be prevented by taking a few simple precautions. This associated article details each study’s recommendations on how specific raw food diet health risks can be addressed.

A raw food diet benefits our health by being low in fat, high in the nutrient-rich fruit and vegetables and low in calories. By its nature the raw food diet excludes many of the harmful additives used in processed foods.

The high percentage of vegetables and fruits also contribute to enhanced physical function, improvements in digestive and eliminative systems and immunity. Additionally, raw foodists report large improvements in their quality of life, health awareness, energy and vitality levels, sex drive, mental and emotional health and spiritual wellbeing.

Higher Fruit and Vegetable Intake

The nutrients and antioxidants that are abundant in fruit and vegetables reduce the risk of disease. Raw foodists generally have a much higher intake of fruit and vegetables than average, at 6.6 serves and 11.4 serves daily. This more than complies with recommendations from health authorities that the minimum daily intake should be 2 serves of fruit and 5 serves of vegetables.

Low in Fat

Eating a diet low in fat is known to lower the risk of heart disease and diabetes. A raw food diet is naturally low in saturated fats and cholesterol as it is largely comprised of fruits, vegetables and wholegrains. Raw foodists report reduced blood pressure and cholesterol levels, along with improved circulation.

Natural Wholefoods

During the processing of food, numerous artificial colourings and flavourings are added to the product. Eating raw natural wholefoods means that these unnecessary and frequently harmful additives are excluded from your diet.

Low in Calories

To many people the most attractive raw food diet benefit, at least initially, is that it is low in calories. Without restricting the amount of food eaten (i.e. you can still eat as much as you want) calorie intake tends to remain low as so many raw foods have only small amounts of calories.

Low calorie diets have been shown to increase longevity and prevent degenerative disease. However, you must still make certain adjustments to the raw food diet to ensure that sufficient nutrients are available to your body. There is more information about the various recommendations for nutritional supplementation made by these studies in the article about raw food diet health risks.

Weight Control

Following on from the last point about the raw food diet being low in calories, many raw foodists report extremely positive outcomes regarding weight control once they embark on a raw food diet. More than 70% report never dieting and more than 90% report a decrease in incidences of overeating.

In the Zajic study, more than 80% of respondents reported losing weight on a raw food diet. In the Kwanbunjan study, participants reported that males lost an average of 8kg and females 6kg after switching to a raw food diet.

Specific Nutritional Advantages

Samples showed that specific raw food diet benefits included high levels of fibre, beta-carotene, folate, copper, potassium, and vitamins A, B, C and E.

Physical Health

Raw foodists reported numerous physical benefits attained directly through eating a raw food diet. These included:
  • improved digestion and elimination
  • increased energy and vitality levels
  • healthy and balanced sex drive
  • greater immunity
  • heightened sense of physical wellbeing and health
  • improved skin, hair, teeth and nail condition
  • reduction in body odour and bad breath
  • enhanced senses
  • reduction in pain levels
  • decreased stiffness, cramping and nack/back pain
  • decreased sleep requirements
  • increased quality of sleep
  • increased physical activity levels
  • increased strength and flexibility
  • reduction in sensitivity to allergies

Chronic Illnesses

For many, the most important and motivating of raw food diet benefit is the possibility of reducing their suffering due to chronic illnesses. Many raw foodists reported shedding or reducing the impact of long term chronic illnesses such as:
  • chronic fatigue
  • candida
  • depression and anxiety
  • hypoglycemia
  • fibromyalgia
  • osteoarthritis
  • cancer

Emotional and Mental Health

Raw foodists also reported a noticeable drop in their stress levels. A perceived improvement in social functioning was accompanied by strengthened emotional and mental health.

Higher Awareness of Health

A raw food diet benefit with strong intrinsic value is a heightened awareness of health. For raw foodists, this often leads to choices like quitting smoking, significantly reducing alcohol intake and exercising more frequently. The raw food lifestyle guides the way to healthier choices.

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