Raw Diet for Weight Loss

· 5th May 2019
Among all of the diet options available, the raw diet is gaining popularity. Do you know about its biggest benefits?

If you’re thinking about starting a weight loss diet, the Internet offers plenty of ideas. Modern diets have their pros and cons, so make sure you verify any kind of information to start your diet plan off on the right foot. Learn about the raw diet, which has recently gained in popularity.

Raw diet

The raw diet isn’t anything new; nutritionists have been recommending these foods for the better part of the last century. However, as we mentioned earlier, it’s been gaining many new followers. This is thanks to veganism. Most raw diets are vegetarian or vegan, but some do include raw meat.

In the raw diet, dieters aim to consume most, if not all, of their food raw. To follow the diet correctly, food products should never be cooked at a temperature higher than 114 degrees F.

Practitioners argue that food loses fundamental nutrients in the cooking process, such as fat-soluble vitamins such as B or C. Furthermore, they avoid any kind of manipulation or treatment; in other words, raw dieters don’t consume any processed or refined food products.

Raw diet: what you can eat and what to avoid

To start a raw diet, let’s list the permitted and banned foods. You can eat the following:

  • Fresh fruit and vegetables.
  • Almond or coconut milk.
  • Nuts.
  • Bottled water.
  • Natural fruit or vegetable juices.
  • Algae.
  • In raw non-vegan diets, you can also consume raw meat and dairy products.

On the other hand, you should avoid processed or refined foods at all costs. Also, steer clear of foods with conservatives or sweeteners. You can’t use salt or refined oils for cooking and say goodbye to tea, coffee, and alcohol.

raw diet 1

Raw diets for weight loss

Raw diets can be helpful for weight loss. Some studies have shown that certain vegan diets, including raw diets, can help reduce body fat and lower the risk of diabetes. They’ve also been linked to a lower risk of cardiovascular disease.

Something else to be mindful of is that the high plant content (thus, fiber) of these kinds of diets improve digestive health and reduce risks of digestive diseases.

Other studies have shown a stronger link between people who followed the raw diet for several years and a lower body mass index as opposed to those following different diets.

The risks of a raw diet

If not followed correctly, raw diets can be risky. In light of the possible danger, you should always follow your nutritionist’s recommendations when establishing a new diet plan.

  • Nutritional imbalances: vitamin B12 is an essential vitamin for red blood cells and it’s mainly found in meats. Raw diets, which tend to be vegan, often have a deficit or complete lack of this vitamin. Therefore, if you decide to follow the raw diet, you should take vitamin B12 supplements. You should also take calcium and vitamin D supplements as well because dairy products are often missing in raw diets.
  • Loss in muscle and bone mass: consuming less calcium and vitamin D implies that bones absorb less calcium. As a result, if you don’t take calcium supplements, you could lose bone density and become more vulnerable to certain injuries such as bone fractures. These kinds of diets are often low in protein as well, which is essential for maintaining muscle mass. Losing muscle mass is a common consequence, especially in the initial phases of the diet.
muscle mass 2

  • Weaker teeth: the higher amount of acidic fruits you’ll be consuming is more harmful to teeth. Alongside a lower calcium intake, teeth can suffer a greater extent of erosion over time.

Lastly, we also want to go over the higher risk of infections that raw diets imply. Cooking at high temperatures kills the bacteria and parasites that are naturally found in food.

Skipping the cooking process, eating certain food products such as meat or eggs can put you at risk of potentially life-threatening diseases such as salmonellosis or other parasitic infections. Be careful with what you eat and always double check your diet with a health professional.

  • Mishra, S., Xu, J., Agarwal, U., Gonzales, J., Levin, S., & Barnard, N. D. (2013). A multicenter randomized controlled trial of a plant-based nutrition program to reduce body weight and cardiovascular risk in the corporate setting: the GEICO study. European Journal of Clinical Nutrition, 67(7), 718–724. https://doi.org/10.1038/ejcn.2013.92
  • Tonstad, S., Butler, T., Yan, R., & Fraser, G. E. (2009). Type of vegetarian diet, body weight, and prevalence of type 2 diabetes. Diabetes Care, 32(5), 791–796. https://doi.org/10.2337/dc08-1886
  • Koebnick, C., Strassner, C., Hoffmann, I., & Leitzmann, C. (1999). Consequences of a Long-Term Raw Food Diet on Body Weight and Menstruation: Results of a Questionnaire Survey. Annals of Nutrition and Metabolism, 43(2), 69–79. https://doi.org/10.1159/000012770
  • Rizzoli, R., & Bonjour, J.-P. (2004). Dietary Protein and Bone Health. Journal of Bone and Mineral Research, 19(4), 527–531. https://doi.org/10.1359/JBMR.040204
  • Koebnick, C., Garcia, A. L., Dagnelie, P. C., Strassner, C., Lindemans, J., Katz, N., … Hoffmann, I. (2005). Long-Term Consumption of a Raw Food Diet Is Associated with Favorable Serum LDL Cholesterol and Triglycerides but Also with Elevated Plasma Homocysteine and Low Serum HDL Cholesterol in Humans. The Journal of Nutrition, 135(10), 2372–2378. https://doi.org/10.1093/jn/135.10.2372