Note: This is an article I wrote for the wonderful One Green Planet. And, the image you see above was compiled by them from photos I submitted to them.
Sticking to a raw vegan diet is relatively easy in the controlled environment of your own home and kitchen. But staying raw out in the real world takes some extra effort.
Whether you’re eating out with friends, going to a family gathering, or joining your co-workers for happy hour, there are plenty of social and logistical situations that are not very conducive to eating nature’s most healthy food. It might be easy for some people to just be hungry and eat later when they get home. But hungry and I do not get along well. There is a better way.
The key is to explain your situation to others when necessary and to always be prepared. It’s about thinking ahead and having options or a plan.
Explain and Train
First, explain your diet to your family and friends. Then train them how to accommodate you if they’re interested, or at tell them not be offended if you just fend for yourself and decline food they may offer. This upfront effort pays off. My husband and I have trained our family well. By now, everyone knows that when we’re invited to a function, we’ll probably bring our own food, and that’s just us, so don’t be offended. Or we may eat beforehand and bring snacks. The important tip for succeeding here is two-fold: 1) Let your family know what and why you’re eating raw or vegan. Share your excitement with them about it, while still letting them know that it doesn’t mean any extra work on their part. Depending on their tolerance for new things or alternative lifestyles, this may seem weird the first few times. But eventually, it becomes the new “normal.” Eventually their questions and comments stop coming up when it’s no longer new and different.
Note: The following is an article I wrote for the fabulous One Green Planet site. Also, the image above was compiled by them from images I submitted.
Flexibility and The Power of the Raw Food Spectrum
Amazing benefits await when you start eating a raw vegan diet. Common experiences include effortless weight loss, increased energy, softer skin, clear and bright eyes, silky hair, better sleep, mental clarity, major health improvements, and peaceful frame of mind. Sounds great, huh!? However, one common question I’m asked is, “I see a lot of different raw food diets out there, which one is right?” As with many things in life, there are different schools of thought regarding which is the best plan when following a diet of raw vegan food.
The raw food diet has a nice wide spectrum as to the different styles of raw food options that are available. After years of fielding questions on my blog, it’s clear that the wide range of options can seem confusing or overwhelming at first. But fear not! Once you realize that the options are nothing more than a continuum ranging from “a little bit” to “all” raw, most of the various ways to “do” raw fall neatly into place. The spectrum of options actually becomes a powerful tool that allows you to precisely tune your degree of raw based on where you are in your life, health situation, and day-to-day circumstances.
At the least-raw end of the spectrum are people who merely try to incorporate more salads and smoothies into their vegan diet (for our purposes, we’ll assume the beginner is already vegan). By simply eating 1-2 salads or smoothies a day, this will automatically start replacing non-raw foods, most notably, cooked and processed foods made from refined wheat/flour, corn, and sugar. Score an immediate win for increased nutrition as you replace nutrient-starved crap with healthy raw veggies!
Here is a peek into one of my refrigerators (we have two, plus an additional stand alone freezer – love having all the storage space). I took you on a tour of my kitchen not so long ago with this video here.
But, here is a current snap shot! As you can see… Mostly raw. Organic. Vegan.
Top shelf: chlorella tablets, Love Bean Fudge, raw stone ground sunflower / pumpkin seed butter, raw stone ground cashew butter, seaweed snacks, sunflower lecithin.
Middle shelf: Tons of fresh Norwalk pressed organic green juice, lettuce, chocolate, raw sauerkraut, 4-Ingredient Magic raw salad dressing.
Middle drawer: ginger, tempeh, tofu
Bottom shelf: miso (lots – about 5 jars), lettuce (washed and ready to go – I like to have it ready to eat so there’s no excuse), fresh brewed herbal tea (I have an exciting blog post planned to share my tea loving habits), strawberries
Bottom drawers: tons of fresh produce for salads, smoothies, and juices
Although I have a lot of days where I eat all raw food, it’s not always my norm. My schtick is all about balance, keeping it simple, healthy, delicious and doing what you can when you can. Therefore, there are some times that I don’t eat all raw. And, I’d say that although my cooked choices are usually top notch healthy (as far as cooked foods go), I do leave room for the occasional cookie, Coconut Bliss ice cream, Chipotle Burrito, and vegan fair-trade dark chocolate bars. Thankfully, I can officially call it “occasional” – I tell ya, I’ve come a loooong way since my Madame Gluttonia Days that I wrote about during my Raw Reboot.
I know that I’ve mentioned many times how I’m really busy with motherhood (attachment parenting is a busy experience), and spending time in the kitchen preparing food isn’t something I get to do much of these days. That’s OK though, because with easy to prep foods like I’m sharing with you today, you get two bonuses:
As many of you know, my newest book, Raw Awakening was released last month. Yay! I’m really excited about this book and all of the recipes I included. And, now, it’s available on Kindle (I’m a big kindle reader. Actually, I read all books on my iPhone with the Kindle App – it’s the only way I can read which translates into a lot of reading as I snuggle with Kamea while she naps.)
I have a busy couple of weeks coming up with PR and radio interviews. When I get more details about them, I’ll be sure to tweet and Facebook them. (If we’re not connected yet via Facebook or Twitter, what ya waiting for? I’m a Chatty Kathy and love to connect, answer questions, and share good stuff on them! – Here’s my personal Facebook page that you can subscribe to as well)
So, if you haven’t grabbed your copy yet, hop on over to Amazon and pick it up here.
Raw Awakening Now Available!
Stay tuned for my next blog post… a funny story about Kamea. Speaking of future blog posts, I have quite the line up this summer for you with topics like: Running (me? ha – not likely… or maybe?), Quinoa (how to use it, and other things, as a great and easy staple), Dehydrating, Acai Bowls (the perfect summer recipe for the whole family), Essential Oils (they could be life changing), Giveaways, Nut Milks (my new go-to recipe!), cell phones (I’m asked all the time about my thoughts on their usage and whether protection is needed), and more!
I was recently interviewed by the very cool Chic Vegan and I thought y’all would like to check it out. I’ve done a number of interviews over the years, but I enjoyed this one particularly so because of the questions. It was fun. :)
PS Don’t forget!!! My new book, Raw Awakening, is going to be released on June 6 and if you pre-order before June 6 I’m giving away a free copy of my ebook Easy Raw Vegan Transitions!
I’m so happy, excited, and proud to say that my next book, Raw Awakening, published through Chronicle Books, is officially available for pre-order. Right now.
Whoo hoo!!!! Can I just do a little jig right now? Will you do it with me? Shake it here… shake it there… duck, turn, boing boing, jump, shimmy shake… Whew! That was fun. :) Thanks for sharing in my joy with me. I’m really really really happy about this book.
So…. on to some exciting news for you. While my new book, Raw Awakening, is available for pre-order, I’m offering a FREE copy of my Easy Raw Vegan Transitions EBOOK to anyone who purchases a copy of Raw Awakening during the pre-order phase. Simply email me a copy of your amazon receipt and I’ll reply with a copy of my Easy Raw Vegan Transitions ebook.
“Raw” food is energizing people around the world. Eating raw no longer means consuming carrot sticks and boring fruit plates-it’s a whole new cuisine and lifestyle. Featuring the same fun and passionate style that has made hers one of the most popular raw food blogs, chef Kristen Suzanne takes readers step by step through the raw food lifestyle: equipping the kitchen, grocery shopping, eating out, dealing with setbacks (and family members!), improving digestion, and losing weight, until eating raw becomes second nature. Plus, the book features 50 fabulous recipes-no cooking required!-for treats like sprouted protein bars, lasagna, soups, brownies, and even cheesecake! Accessible, fun, and packed with information not available anywhere else, this volume is a must-have for anyone who truly cares about health and nutrition.
I’ve been a voracious reader since childhood. When I was growing up, my mom increased our enthusiasm for books by buying my brother and me a cassette music tape of choice for each book we finished. Music and books became my dual intertwined passions! To this day, I read every chance I get!
When I reflect on my life over the past 10 years, it’s clear that I never could have anticipated much of what has happened and, even with the benefit of hindsight, it’s sometimes hard to know exactly how I got to where I am. But there are a few key choices and events that very clearly sent me on an entirely new trajectory… such as my decision to move to Arizona, meeting Greg, and a few others. Among these key events are four specific books that, looking back, were life changing. In fact, some of them were so dramatic that I knew my life had changed while I was still reading them!
I’ve been a high energy, video making freak today. Count them… 5 videos I made and uploaded to YouTube. Here is one of them. I’m chatting about how High Raw can be a slippery slope and how it feels at day 57 of my Raw Reboot.
Oh! And don’t forget to enter my awesome giveaway here… The company sponsoring it said if we get a good response, we can do it again. :)
Hi! I'm a chef, author, homeschooling mom, and I love to eat and cook super healthy food. I'm a former vegan, now real-food omnivore, who enjoys coffee(!), dark chocolate, rebounding, and researching the latest tips for optimal living.