I went raw for vanity. I didn’t care about the ethics of animal husbandry. I cared about the fact that I looked awful: I was overweight, on the less forgiving side of 35 and I was about to be layed off again from running (a long-standing ligament problem).
I couldn’t afford a slide into misery or a wander into the crap eating territory that had accompanied my last period of serious injury in 2011 and 2012 (it had been too long a walk back to sanity). So I decided to go raw.
I knew I looked and felt better when I ate lots of fruit and veg. I was raw back in 2005 [2 out of 7 days and for 2/3 of my meals the rest of the time]. Back then I was lean and vital and I could run a 20min 5k on a steady effort.
So I set a date (1st September 2013) and then I stopped eating cooked food. It was absolutely no big deal. I didn’t do much cooking anyway (I was a tuna-out-of-a-can type of person), and when I wasn’t having a feed on the over-processed, 2-for-1, chocolate and crisp offers from Tesco, I was a fruit and veg whore. I got through at least 10-15 pieces of fruit and veg a day.
My greatest challenge has been living in a non Raw world and the constant planning and preparation that becomes vital if you don’t want to be caught out on the hop with limited options.
The planning and preparation is constant, regimented and it can be a bind – if I want homous for the weekend then I absolutely have to start sprouting on Tuesday – but on the plus side I’m now using all the once dormant accessories that came with my food processor.
I’ve experienced the consequences of a lazy Sunday afternoon not spent chopping, juicing and blending for the week to come. I’ve either fasted at work (not often) or I’ve chosen to make compromised food choices. I’m not as raw as I could be and I’m not as vegan as I could be
- I eat nuts. In fact I eat too many nuts and there is no more a moreish nut than the cashew.
- I eat sun-dried tomatoes and sometimes they are soaked in oil which I know hasn’t been cold pressed (the product is far too cheap)
- I eat dried fruit. Often.
- I’ve drunk ‘gently’ pasteurized smoothies and I have at least 10 packets of ready chopped pineapples a week. And when desperate (and not desperate) I eat nak’d bars
But I don’t get cravings for cooked food.
I do however get cravings for ice-cream and related junk. Temptation has knocked on my door many times. I’ve answered twice to frozen yoghurt and blueberry muffins. It was pleasant enough during the moment of consumption but then I got belly rot and extensive bloating for a few days (the offer of a seat on the tube is a story for another post).
I wish I could say that the experience of eating the muffins and yoghurt was prohibitive and too high a price to pay but I actually thought ‘I could take this pain and discomfort for the occasional bite of the forbidden fruit’.
However I did chase down the wagon and I climbed back on. I’m still on it and I’m writing about the journey.