you are what you eat
By Sarah Best
One of the things you start to notice when you get into raw in a big way is that you get some verrry funny looks in the supermarket. Why? Well, the average trolley might contain a small collection of fruit and veg in amongst all the packaged cooked food staples. Yours, meanwhile, will be creaking under the weight of piles of fresh fruits and greens of numerous varieties - and not a lot else!
I remember the days when fresh foods used to be the supporting act in my shopping trolley and diet, secondary to the loaves of bread, packs of pasta, rice, potatoes, ready meals, dairy products and various synthetic 'treats'. But you know what? When you truly realize the meaning of the phrase 'You are what you eat' there's only one kind of shopping trolley you want, and it's the one that makes people look at you like you're off your trolley!
So next time you go shopping, remember that the foods you select to eat will literally become YOU. Your body cells are constantly being replaced, and they are built of whatever you choose to feed yourself. So the question is, do you want to be made of dead, denatured, processed non-foods or fresh, live essential enzymes, vitamins, minerals, phytonutrients and other vibrant, life-giving stuff?
What a lot of people struggle with when they get into raw foods is the sheer volume of fruit and vegetables you have to procure and eat. Convenience food didn't get its name for nothing: it doesn't weigh much or take up much space, and you can just tear open the packet and gulp it down in a few mouthfuls while on the hoof. Such food has had the fibre and water removed, while fresh fruit and veggies have these essential components intact, and this is why you have to get used to dealing with such large volumes when you make these foods the basis of your diet.
But guess what: your body needs these things that the food processors have deemed dispensable. They're not optional extras; not if you want to feel your best.
Before you get into raw food, you may throw a few spinach or lettuce leaves on a plate next to main attraction, the "real" food; now the entire head of lettuce or the whole bag of spinach becomes the main attraction of the meal, garnished with delicious dressings and any tasty bits and pieces you choose to throw in. This is the nutrition our bodies expect: water-rich fresh foods - pure and unadulterated.
That's not to say the body wants only these foods, but it is certainly happiest if at least 50% of what you eat is in this category. So next time you go shopping, load up your trolley in the fresh produce aisle and discover how you feel when you give your body what it really wants. Start gradually, take whatever time you need to work up to this level, and be warned: it will change your life!
Sarah Best is the editor of Get Fresh! magazine.