Raw food diet
A raw food diet is a food system that is characterized by the complete exclusion of heat-treated food. There are a number of varieties of a raw food diet, such as fruitarianism, a raw-mono diet, etc. It is believed that a raw food diet is not able to provide the body with biologically significant and nutrients, as a result of which its justification is pseudoscientific.
This article will present the positive and negative aspects of the raw food diet known today.
Description of the raw food diet
Adherents of a raw food diet consume only food that has not been exposed to heat. Thus, the maximum allowable heating temperature of products should not exceed 42 ⁰С – the temperature of protein coagulation.
As a rule, raw foodists eat only vegetables, fruits, sprouted cereals, nuts, cereals, dried fruits, legumes and other similar products. In their opinion, such a diet is natural for the human body, therefore it protects it from obesity, eliminates toxins, gives energy, and also preserves the nutritional value of the consumed products.
However, scientists say that with such a nutrition system, the body will be deficient in vitamins, minerals and antioxidants. Based on these and other factors, modern medicine speaks of a raw food diet as a simple diet.
The vast majority of doctors and nutritionists say that a prolonged raw food diet will certainly lead to a lack of proteins and vital substances, including calcium, iron and vitamin B12. However, contrary to the views of raw foodists, this diet is neither natural nor healthy.
Varieties of the raw food diet
All types of raw food diet have one thing in common – the refusal to cook food through heat treatment (above 42 ⁰С). There are the following types of raw food diet:
omnivorous raw food diet – any raw food is allowed: meat, fish, eggs, seafood, milk, etc .;
vegetarian raw food diet – the rejection of meat and fish products;
vegan raw food diet – the use of exclusively raw plant foods;
carnivorous raw food – the emphasis on the use of raw fish, seafood, raw meat, eggs and animal fat, while the presence of fruits in such a diet is minimal;
fruitarianism – only fruits, berries and certain types of vegetables are consumed, which in some countries are regarded as fruits (tomatoes, cucumbers);
mucusless diet – a person eats exclusively raw vegetables and fruits, since other foods allegedly form mucus in the body, which is the cause of all diseases.
An interesting fact is that the raw food diet can also be divided in relation to the diet planning system. There is such a technique as the raw-mono diet, in which it is permissible to consume only a certain product at one sitting. At the same time, the basis for a mixed raw food diet (monotrophic) is the selection of products containing a specific “palette” of nutrients.
Critics of the raw food diet claim that from time immemorial man has cooked food on fire, and, therefore, food cooked on fire is quite appropriate for the human body. The fact that heat treatment destroys all useful substances is only partly true.
For example, at high temperatures, part of vitamin C is destroyed, but at the same time, in a number of products, heat treatment also contributes to the release of nutrients that are inaccessible for absorption in raw food.
Proponents of a raw food diet claim that heat treatment of food contributes to the destruction of enzymes. This is true, but at the same time, the body produces digestive enzymes on its own, and the enzymes that come with food are destroyed by gastric juice.
In addition, with a prolonged raw food diet, the body begins to lack many important vitamins and minerals: vitamins B12 and D, selenium, zinc, iron and omega-3. The fact that a raw food diet really promotes weight loss is difficult to deny, but it is important to understand at what cost such “achievements” come.
Modern doctors argue that raw food (vegetarian) children who do not consume appropriate supplements will have short stature and problems with neurological diseases in the future.
Today, experts continue to actively explore issues related to the raw food diet. Often such a diet really allows you to get rid of certain diseases, or to alleviate the course of the disease. However, there are many side effects due to prolonged consumption of only raw foods.
For example, in a 1998 study, a raw vegan diet was shown to reduce symptoms of rheumatoid arthritis, but half of the subjects had to withdraw early from the study due to various side effects, including nausea and stomach upset.
From this it follows that a raw food diet should be treated very carefully and at best people do not need to neglect special additives.