Published on September 27th, 2010 | by Zachary Shahan1
Raw Foods for Longevity and Health (+ Walnut Pate Recipe)
There are legitimate arguments one can find to support the benefits of this diet, that diet, and the next diet. The truth is individuals respond differently to different diets and the secret to health is finding the diet that works for you — body, mind, and spirit.
One thing that is impossible to dispute when talking about the benefits of a Raw Foods diet is that raw foods are where the enzymes are. Vital force, or energy, necessary for vitality, has a lot to do with good amounts of enzymes in the digestive system and in the food we eat.
Enzymes & Raw Foods for Aging & Inflammation
Enzymes bloom forth from any and every dish of raw food one can imagine. A critical issue of aging is the loss of enzymes in our bodies. The production of enzymes decrease in one’s digestive system as one ages.
Inflammation is another reason to consider raw foods. Inflammatory problems, in this society, generally increase as one ages. Enzymes are anti-inflammatory. There is nothing like bromelian, a protease enzyme to offset arthritis. If other factors in diet and exercise are good, fresh raw pineapple with large amounts of bromelian in it will do away with the symptoms of, or tendency towards, arthritis. I know of a natural healer who claims success in treating arthritis solely with diet, primarily pineapples.. and lots of them. She says pineapples work better that Chinese herbs or homeopathic medicine, although she uses homeopathics if necessary, along with pineapple, to treat the mental-emotional component of the illness.
The secret to health is in the diet!
The best way to get bromelian is to eat fresh raw pineapple; mixing it with some fresh papaya, another heavy-weight enzyme food (and my favorite fruit), supplying the body with generous amounts of papain. In the realm of enzymes, this combo can decrease inflammation from any cause. Having a healthy supply of raw foods insures a healthy amount of enzymes as well as vitamin C and A. Studies on chemotherapy patients have shown these two enzymes to be effective in treating inflammation from this harsh cancer therapy.
In this day and age, when folks are doing invasive procedures to stay looking “young,” such as Botox and plastic surgery (thank you to Julia Roberts for bucking this trend), this wholesome way of offsetting aging with diet seems easy, environmentally sound, and ridiculously cheap by comparison.
Give that extra money to some good social or environmental organizations instead!
As I was raised by a raw foods advocate and worked in health food stores for years, I know that most of these devoted raw foodists seem to get gray hair until many years after other folks, if then. Their skin truly looks like it glows. And their hair shines like a full moon. Plus, they seem to have an extra boost of life in their eyes.
I could always tell the customers who were raw foodists, and I could tell if a raw foodist I knew fell off the raw food diet for a time — it happens.
Even though I think a pure raw food diet is worth a try, if you love warm curries and beans (like I obviously do), at least having ample amounts of raw foods in the diet is the way to go. On the next page is a full raw food meal and some of our favorite staples. We eat a combo of raw foods with alkaline foods as much as possible.
Photo Credit: Hellebardius via flickr