13 January 2011

Thoughts on RAW!

So, tonight marks my 5th day of eating Raw.  It's true.  I've made it this far.  You're impressed, right?  Well, you should be.
Raw Blueberry GRAWnola

First of all, let me tell you ten reasons why I am absolutely loving this:
1. After too many months of eating pasta and grilled cheese sandwiches, my family is consistently eating healthful, delicious, homemade food EVERY meal!
2. Every single recipe I have tried so far has been delectable.
3. I can eat as many treats as I want, because, after all, they are mostly just sprouted buckwheat, or coconut, or raw cacao powder!
4. I am losing weight - kay, maybe this isn't a plus: new pants are definitely not in the budget this month.  I guess back to junior high and baggy pants I go. There's a plus!
5. I have significantly more energy - this week I was motivated by Lindsay's comment on my last post about exercise, and I actually went to the YMCA to use my pass for more than just watching Eli's swim lessons. It felt great.
6. It is nice to have a motivation to actually cook (or un-cook) for my family.  It's been hard, living with my parents, to do much.
7. I'm teaching my boys to enjoy eating good, healthy food.  Silas mostly just plays with the food, but Eli has been a trooper and tastes everything and likes most of it.
8. I am equipping myself with some great recipes and habits to use once we aren't eating 100% raw.
9. Jared is doing it wholeheartedly with me, which is not only fun, but hopefully really good for his health too.
10. Spending time in the kitchen with my mom and my boys is infinitely more fun than hanging out in the basement watching the same movie over and over again.  It takes a lot of time, but all of that time has been totally delightful.
Eli helping to spread the Blueberry Crispies I invented.

Making Cheese.  We've really formed a close relationship with that food processor. I don't think I'll ever be able to live without one again.
There you have it. I'm sure I could come up with more, but those are the first that come to mind. 

What do I eat, do you ask?  Well, let me break it down for you.

I start each morning with a delicious green smoothie: spinach or kale with bananas, dates, mangos, flax, spirulina, maca and whatever other good stuff I feel we need.  And I'm not talking about just a glass of green smoothie, I'm talking about at least a litre, if not more.  Delish!  Jared drinks the same as me, and Eli and Silas have their own portions.  The smoothie is enough for me, but I usually give the boys some raw granola or buckwheat crackers as well.  I still have them drinking milk (raw, mind you) so they have some of that on it as well.
Eli and Silas eating breakfast. Eli refused to smile.

For lunch we have had leftovers from the night before.  Plus, so that I make sure I am getting enough calories and good healthy fat (no surprisingly, Raw Food is a low calorie diet) I share a whole avocado with Eli.  I never knew I liked avocado so much, but I really do.

For dinner each night we have tried a new recipe.  While the many salads don't take much to throw together, many other recipes don't just take time the day of, but require you to soak nuts and grains for days before hand, and often to dehydrate the meal for at least 24 hours as well.  We live in a society of instant gratification, so this is difficult to get used to.  But, I find that if I just prepare one meal a day, even if I will be eating it two or three days later, I haven't been too overwhelmed.  We have had cheese sticks (made with sunflower seeds), pineapple pizza (dehydrated onion crust, collard, sunflower seed cheese, raw marinara sauce, veggies and pineapples), cream of mushroom soup (the cream is just cashews and almonds), zucchini pasta, mock salmon wraps...  Really, the possibilities are endless!
Soaking almonds, sunflower seeds, walnuts, pumpkin seeds and chia.

Breakfast in the dehydrator
 In between meals I find, when I get a little peckish, I just eat an apple with raw almond butter, or some celery with almond butter and raisins.  Kale chips are so good. A handful of nuts and dried fruit satisfies a lot.  I've been a little concerned that the low fat, low calories might effect my milk production, so even though the meals are very satisfying, I try to eat more than I otherwise would.  I'm not a big snacker, but raw snacks are good, so I'm surviving.

So, what's hard about it?  Well, it takes a lot of time and preparation.  I've got the time, but I'm not used to thinking days ahead for meals.  Spaghetti is definitely easier.  I don't miss meat, and dairy is easier than I would have guessed to live without, but I do love baked goods.  I don't mind eating all the raw food, but when I am offered something like banana bread I want to have less resolve. Also, because this is really new to me, it does not just take a lot of time to do, but I'm spending the rest of my time reading recipe books and learning about why to eat raw.  This is good, because I love to learn new things, but I've got a funny feeling that I am going to have to put aside crafty things during this adventure.

So, there you have it.  Five days in, and I'm going strong.  Despite the few things that are hard, I know I can do just about anything for 30 days.  When I'm done we certainly won't eat 100% raw, but I will definitely incorporate a lot more of it into our lives.  I feel healthier already!


  1. Wow, way to go. I'm impressed by your determination! It can't be easy, especially feeding kids. And way to go Eli for trying everything, too!

  2. good work- when I am in calgary I would really like you to teach me everything you know...

  3. When you move to my housing co op,(Cher, wanna come? you can make pies!) I too would like you to teach me that granola! You know when you aren't busy making clothes...
    Can you post the recipes pleeeeeease.
    Thank you.

  4. Jenny, I have a question for you--how do you do raw on a budget? We're currently trying to feed our family of four on Jake's part-time, almost-minimum-wage job while I finish school, and I have to be creative just to be able to buy veggies. I'd love to try to at least do some raw food stuff, but most of the ingredients look like they would cost a lot of money. Have you found it to be pretty expensive, or is it doable on a tight budget?
    I love your blog, by the way :)

  5. Ruth, you voice my very fears about the longevity of this lifestyle. The fact is, I'm living with my parents right now, and they are eating raw too, so we are really lucky, because they are doing all the grocery shopping.
    Frankly, eating raw could be cheaper than the standard American diet IF you ate just salads and omitted a lot of the desserts and nutty stuff. But... the reason why I like it so much is that you can eat all the wonderful desserts and it is so satisfying, and I don't think I would be nearly as happy with it if I was only eating salads. I guess that there are ways to make it cheaper: substitute all the nuts for the cheaper nuts, buy bulk, and pick and choose your recipes so that you are only cooking with cheaper ingredients. You could also only eat salads...
    Ask me again in a few months when we're on our own, and I'll let you know where we're at. For now I remain eternally grateful for my folks!


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