You may have already come to the decision to give the diet a try. Even though it’s fairly obvious on what you need to do to make the switch – eat more raw foods – there is an art to making the switch successfully.
It may be easy to start out. All you need to do is eat fruits and vegetables as well as sprouted grains and special raw “breads” that are made with these grains. However, if the switch is done incorrectly you could either lose your motivation or experience gastric discomfort. Both of these things can be discouraging.
If you are undecided about whether or not you want to make the switch to a raw foods diet you can approach this in several ways. First, you can think about it more by doing research and talking with people who follow the raw foods diet. You can also take the plunge and start following the steps listed below to help you make the transition.
After your transition, you can follow the diet for several weeks or months (it’s up to you) and see how you feel. If you feel great, it would be easy to continue. If you don’t notice a difference or found the diet too hard to follow, you can either scale back on the percentage of raw food you are consuming or abandon the diet all together. However, even if you do stop following the vegan foods diet you can still incorporate elements of it into your daily ritual.
Keep in mind that you don’t need to make the change all at once. You can adapt these steps to be as dramatic or gradual as you want. Changing to a raw foods diet is a personal journey. As you go through the process you will discover the routine that is right for your needs.
Here are the steps that will help you make the transition into a raw foods diet. If you follow them, the whole process will go a lot smoother. If you don’t do things to help make it easier, things can get frustrated pretty quickly. A lot of people may end up giving up before they really give it a try. However, with a little planning the transition will go smoothly and you’ll be able to see just how good for you the diet really can be. The key is that you really do need to plan or else you’ll be frustrated.
STEP 1 : WHAT ARE YOUR MOTIVES?
The first step to making the switch to a raw foods diet is to make sure you understand your motives for switching to a raw foods diet. At this point, it is a good idea to start a journal and talk about how you feel and why you want to make the change. Maybe you have a health problem you are hoping to solve. Or perhaps you are just doing it to be as healthy as you can.
By clearly writing down your motives, it will help keep you motivated. In a way, these motives will also become your goals. If your motive is weight loss, for example, you can turn that into a goal by saying how many pounds you want to lose and how long you want it to take. This stage will help you begin the journey in a positive way.
Without clarity as to what your motives are, you could give up before you really even give the diet a chance. The idea is to stick with it long enough to really see the results. If you give up too soon you won’t have the positive experience you were hoping for. This shouldn’t be frustrating – it should be positive. Understanding your motives will help with that.
STEP 2 : DO YOU HAVE THE RIGHT MINDSET?
Changing to a raw foods diet is something that will require you to embrace a new way of thinking. In order to successfully make the switch, you need to have the right mindset. It’s essential.
In the previous section you spent some time discovering what your motives are for embracing this new lifestyle. Your next step is to build on that and develop a positive attitude. If you are excited about the changes and positive about what you can accomplish, it will make success on this new diet more likely.
The right mindset will also help you if you are starting to feel discouraged. Just remember what your goals are and pay attention to how you feel throughout the process and it will help keep you in a positive frame of mind.
STEP 3 : GET PREPARED
This step is perhaps the most involved. Once you decide what you want to accomplish with the raw foods diet and put yourself in the right frame of mind, you actually need to get prepared. For many, making the switch means you have to adopt a whole new way of thinking. This involves things like
- Collecting recipes
- Coming up with a solid eating plan
- Learning the basics of the diet
- Developing a strategy for food shopping
- Determining a strategy for dining out
It is especially important to go through this planning phase for the first few weeks of your switch. If you are transitioning into the raw foods diet gradually you can also account for that in your planning.
STEP 4 : SET YOURSELF UP FOR SUCCESS
Once you determine what kinds of recipes and menus you will be cooking, it is important to set your kitchen up to accommodate a raw foods diet. As with any eating plan, this will be a key determiner of success.
• If everyone in your family is embracing the raw foods lifestyle, get rid of anything that isn’t part of this diet.
• Stock the pantry and refrigerator with a wide array of raw foods ingredients. This includes basic ingredients like sprouts and raw grains and also any packaged foods you find at the health food store.
• It is a good idea to determine if you have the right kitchen equipment needed to prepare vegan foods meals. This will make your life easier and also make preparing meals a lot more fun.
Bear in mind that you can make this step as simple or complex as you want. It also isn’t necessary to buy everything you need all at once.
STEP 5 : MONITOR PROGRESS
The last crucial element of making the switch to a raw foods diet as successful as possible is to have a system in place that will help you monitor your progress. In the first step we talked about setting up a journal. The journal can be in any form you want but if you put it into a three ringed binder you can also use the binder to include your recipes and menus.
There are a few things you should keep track of. Keep a journal of what you eat on a daily basis. I’d also monitor things like weight and body fat to make sure that your weight stays at a healthy level. At the end of each day, spend some time talking about how you feel. If you have any health problems, for example, talk about how the diet seems to be affecting it.
This will help keep you motivated as you go through the process. If you have a tangible way to measure your progress, it will help make this process an even bigger success for you.
STEP 6 : MOST IMPORTANTLY, HAVE FUN!
Changing to a raw foods diet shouldn’t be all work and no play. The process needs to be fun and satisfying. The first week will be the most challenging because this is where the most dramatic changes to your diet and lifestyle will take place. Once the first week is over, it will get easier.
That is why it is important to not get discouraged during that first week. Once you get passed that hurdle, you can relax a bit. And once you relax, you can learn to have fun. After all, this is an exciting time. You are taking the time out of your busy schedule to take control of your health.
To keep things fun – why not make it a goal to try a few new recipes each week? Eating a raw foods diet is about more than eating raw vegetable sticks and salads all the time. You can actually accomplish a lot of variety in your diet if you take the time to try new things.
Also, raw foods are getting increasingly popular with the dining out scene. Look for restaurants in your area that focus on raw foods or that offers a nice selection of raw meals. You can also invite your friends and family over for a healthy raw foods meal. Share with them your new lifestyle and some healthy and delicious recipes. This will go a long way to making the process a positive experience for you and everyone around you.