Since a raw foods diet doesn’t involve cooked foods, many people find it difficult to eat a raw foods diet in the winter. For this reason, people tend to fall off the wagon and turn to cooked foods, because it gives them the comfort and warmth they are looking for in the cold weather. Believe it or not, staying raw in the winter is easier than you think.
One common misconceptions about a raw foods diet, is that the foods are always cold. Many people may refer to the term ‘raw foods’ as ‘cold foods’. This is not true. In the raw food cuisine, heating/cooking foods above 115-118 degrees, is considered dead, and foods warmed/cooked below those degrees, are considered raw!
All the essential living nutrients present in cooked foods have been destroyed. For instance, broccoli, in its raw, undestroyed form, is rich in protein, calcium, magnesium, fights cancer, and provides much more great benefits. When you steamed/baked/roasted it, all those nutrients in the broccoli are no longer present. The broccoli is no longer a superfood like it was when it was raw.
That being said, a raw broccoli is more nutritious than a steamed/baked/roasted one. Many people may debate this, but the truth is, cooked foods is not optimum for the body and for your health. We are not designed to eat cooked foods. I’ll get more in depth about this topic in a blogpost soon.
How Do Raw Foodists Survive on a Raw Foods Diet in the Winter?
I’ve been on this lifestyle for almost 3 years now, and so far in the winter, I’ve been able to sustain pretty well. My first winter as a raw vegan, I ate both raw foods and cooked foods. Eventually, after going fully raw a year later, I’ve actually found it easy to stay raw in the cold months, and I’m going to share with you how in this post.
Warm foods are considered comforting foods for many people, especially during the cold, winter months, and I know that for a fact. Our bodies adjust to the seasons. For example, in the summer, we crave cooler foods, like salads, watermelon, ice cream, sandwiches, burgers, and less of the cooked/heated foods (although, typically, some still turn on their ovens to bake, roast…) — while in the fall and winter seasons, we crave more warm foods. This may not sound “warming” to you, but I still enjoy ice cream in the winter.
You can still experience that same warmth comfort with raw foods. Here’s how:
Warm Up Your Foods… The Raw Way!
Like I mentioned above, you can still warm/heat up your foods and drinks on a raw foods diet. In fact, there are a few ways:
- you can warm up drinks and liquid foods in your high-speed blender, and blend for a few minutes until warm. You can use a food thermometer to make sure you don’t pass over 115-118 degrees. If you stay below those temperatures, you’ll be rawific!
- use your stove top and place your food in a pan/pot, and use a food thermometer to make sure you don’t pass over the raw degrees. Once in a while, I use this method when I’d like to melt firm coconut oil. Just within a few seconds, the coconut oil softens and melts, just to my preference!
- warm up foods in the dehydrator! They’re good for both drying and warming up foods. I love using my dehydrator, and its one of the equipments I recommend on a raw foods diet. When its on, it warms up my kitchen. With the dehydrator I use, I’m able to set the temperature, which is around 105-110 degrees. For instance, if you wanted to warm up pudding or porridge, you can place your bowl in the dehydrator for a few minutes, until your food is warm to your liking. I’ve dehydrated my brownies, and it came out soft. It all depends on how long you leave the brownie dehydrating, of course, you’ll have different consistencies. Have fun with your dehydrator. You can create really rawmazing creations with it. Dehydrators are like ovens for raw vegans. It’s really handy and neat.
***I don’t recommend using the microwave for anything, because microwave ovens contain high levels of radiation. If you’re not so picky, you can use your oven at its lowest temperature.
Eat Warm Foods
Now that you know the 3 different ways you can warm up your foods and drinks on a raw foods diet, staying raw in the winter is easy, isn’t it!? The perfect raw food winter recipes are chili (there are numerous ways you can make chili, and you can make a different chili recipe every night), soups, hot sauce, pudding, porridge, and dehydrated treats. Spices like cinnamon, nutmeg, cayenne, and jalapeno—are good for warming up your foods, drinks and even your body temperature. If you stand next to a plate with pieces of jalapeno pepper, you’ll notice your body temperature getting warm. I experienced this, and felt my body warming up almost instantly! Also, if you sprinkle cinnamon and nutmeg on or in any of your foods and/or drinks, this will warm your body, as well.
That’s it! I hope this post has helped you realize how easy eating raw foods in the winter is, and gave you a better understanding on how to stay raw in the winter. If you have any tips on how to stay raw in the winter, please share in the comments below.
Stay rawesome and warm this winter,
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