Raw Vegan Diet: What to Eat to Heal
What To Eat
Bear in mind you should check with your physician before embarking on any diet - even though this is not a weight loss diet.
Here are the food choices if you follow a raw vegan diet. All of these items should be readily available common foods. As a raw vegan, you've probably been on the path a while. However, if you're considered a gourmet raw vegan, you may encounter some healing issues, as well as future health issues, if you are using a high quantity of nuts to create everything from crackers to pizza crust.
We, and others, in the raw food community have found that a gourmet raw vegan diet can be as unhealthy as a meat-based diet. The culprit is over-use of nuts. Humans in our natural state would not have been able consume nuts in such great quantity due to the difficulty of having to forage, crack and pry nut meats out of shells. The main focus was finding a fast, easy and plentiful quantity of food to eat while dodging numerous threats in nature. If you consider our raw food roots, the average ancestor only ate a handful of nuts on rare occasions.
Raw vegans who eat poorly can have equal-to-or-greater healing issues than smokers and those on life-long meat-based diets. Stick mainly, if not solely, to these foods and you will heal quickly as well as lead a healthier life as a raw vegan. The keys to healing with this diet are unlimited amounts of dark, leafy greens and fresh, ripe fruit, which without all the meat-based diet issues, will actually provide you with all the protein and building blocks you need to heal. You may want to consider checking into the methylcobalamine version of Vit B12. Feel free to join us and discuss this with our staff.
With a raw vegan diet, there aren't concerns about spiking blood sugars, since the absence of meat, dairy and grains halt these problems. The only concern is over-use of nuts. The book 80/10/10 is a great overview into the lower fat raw vegan lifestyle, with a lot of though provoking information, but it should be balanced with the book, Raw Food Controversies for a better view of a raw lifestyle.
Clearly, you're not going to restrict your caloric intake at this time at all, and typically raw vegans never would anyway. Eat as many fresh raw fruits and vegetables as you would like, making sure you actually get enough calories each day. If you have been over-dosing on nuts and raw nut butters, you may need to increase your fruits to make up for the caloric loss.
Truth of the matter is, if you follow this your blood sugar should balance perfectly on its own and you may even lose a few pounds as a side benefit, if you've been consuming too many nuts. Heal correctly and get trimmer - what could be better?
If you're raw vegan, select your foods from this list.
Sample Food list: Basically unlimited amounts of ALL fresh fruits and vegetables in raw form are going to work for you. Things like cabbage, broccoli and carrots, however, aren't going to give you enough mineral-per-calorie bang as the other foods we have listed. Bolded foods are key due to their exceptional mineral properties and the benefits you'll receive from them. Avocados are a good source of healthy fat and would be a much better replacement for nut fats, as well as calories, since we all know how hard it can be to get enough calories in on a raw vegan diet.
Apples, Pears, Peaches, Oranges, Pineapple, Cantaloupe, Mangos, Papaya, Plums, Lemons, Bananas (not limited), Kale, Spinach, Collard Greens, Mustard Greens, Mushrooms, Romaine Lettuce, Red or Green Lettuce, String beans, Tomatoes, Green or Red Peppers, Celery, Cucumbers, Chia seeds, Fresh herbs, Zucchini, Asparagus, Onions, *Garlic - after surgery only. In limited amounts: Raw peanut butter, almonds, pecans, walnuts, hazelnuts - raw, unsalted (small amounts - 8-10 is a serving) Olive oil, Walnut Oil. Herbs, Spices, Cinnamon. Dates are a good snack with an apple once in a while, but keep dried fruit to a minimum.
Avoid salt. Avoid nut crackers, nut crusts & 'breads'.
The vegetables and fruits should be raw and fresh only.
Do not use artificial sweeteners during your recovery - or ever really if you're raw vegan.
Salad dressings are fine, just don't overdo it because as previously discussed, the fats from nuts and dressings can create health issues similar to the meat-based diet most of us left behind. A light drizzle of olive oil or walnut oil and a little garlic/parsley salt on a salad is one of our favorite salad dressings. Try it, you might be amazed.
While most raw vegans don't use processed sugars, if you use any of these things, do so in limited quantities: raw sugar, raw brown sugar, raw maple syrup. We do recommend Stevia (we like the Sweetleaf liquid varieties in Lemondrop or Valencia orange) for your lemon tea - more about that here, or if you juice, add the juice of a lemon to your juice everyday - perfect.
With sugar usage during recovery, be it raw sugar, or raw maple syrup, use restraint as you can unbalance your blood sugar and undo the benefits of your Raw Vegan Healing Diet. Stevia is so great in our Lemon Tea and other recipes because it doesn't add to your sugar load at all.
What To Drink
As a raw vegan, you probably already experience a level of hydration never known to those on meat-based diets. Still you need water to help move surgery meds out, as well as dead fat cells and body fluids trapped in your tissues from surgery. Keep your water intake between 8 and 10 glasses a day if you aren't already, and that is sufficient. No need to drink gallons, you will wash your minerals away that your raw veganism is actually providing. You can cause yourself harm by flooding yourself with more than the recommended amount of water per day.
Unless you are adding the juice of a lemon to your raw juice, once or twice a day in either cold or hot water, add the juice of one lemon and sweeten to taste with raw sugar, raw maple syrup, or stevia. This is our recipe for 'Lemon Tea'. Please do not use any artificial sweeteners.
Lemon is a natural purifier and diuretic. It will help to flush surgery meds, dead fat cells, body fluids and toxins out of your system. Your skin will become clearer and you may even register a loss on your scale from the loss of water weight. As a raw vegan, you may already experience all these benefits from your raw diet.
Those of you that know us are used to us recommending the 'lemon tea' as a way of flushing out surgery meds and reducing water retention - thus reducing soreness in breasts before and after surgery. It really does work and many of our physicians are now recommending the same. See our expanded info on Lemon Tea.
Raw vegans may not be drinking coffee or drinking caffeinated beverages, but if you are, please read our information about caffeine prior to your surgery as well as its effects on breast health in our article about Caffeine, Surgery and Healing.
We have an entire food section dedicated to the Healing Diet, with a variety of choices, beautiful full color photos, and options for meat as well as plant-based diets, so after reading this section on your personal diet type, move onto our Healing Diet page to find the recipes and combinations you need.