Wednesday, May 9, 2012

Rethinking and renewing: The Raw experiment

Well, last week was FASCINATING!! I learned at least 8 billion things during the raw food cleanse, but I'll only cover a few, cuz I know y'all are busy.
First off. I like food.  No, I didn't learn that during the detox. I've always known that. And anyone who knows me already knows that too!  I sincerely love *all* food though, which sets me apart from most people. I am an equal opportunity veggie lover. I don't look at eating veggies as a punishment. And I can find joy in a gluten free, agave sweetened banana cake as much as I can a triple chocolate mousse cake with ganache frosting.  I'm very thankful for that because eating Raw would put most people's taste buds to the test. Don't get me wrong, everything I ate was good (well, except for that one beet salad) but eating pine nut date caramels or sour cream made from cashews takes some adventurous taste buds.
As you already know, the raw foods detox started as a requirement for my detox and digestion class at school, and needed to be done before this month was over. I could have just stopped there and spared you all those 7 days of agony, er, I mean, enlightenment, but decided to turn it into ONE GIANT EXPERIMENT.
I am not going to go into the details of how the detox went just yet, but I will post that after I've done my report for school. I will, however, share with you the original plan, as well as how I am going to tweak it a bit after what I've learned this week.
Originally, my good friend Addie and I had planned on doing the raw foods diet for 30 days and then doing an almost polar opposite diet, Paleo/Primal, for another 30 days after that.  The plan was to take pH levels, weight, measurements, cravings…pretty much anything and everything we could think of to track how we each handled these opposing diets.  Addie is an O+ blood type, one that according to Dr. D'Adamo, author of the somewhat controversial Blood Type diet book, should do fantastically well on a Paleo/Primal diet.  I, conversely, am an A+ blood type and should do amazingly well on a vegan/vegetarian diet (such as the raw diet) and do horribly on the high protein/low carb plans.  I was curious if this theory would hold up, but also for my own personal nutritionally inquisitive mind, just wanted to see what would happen.
However, after 7 days of eating raw I was realizing that now was just not the time to do the entire 30 days.  First of all, if you live in the Midwest you'll understand this, fresh fruits and veggies right now are SO EXPENSIVE!  If I just wait a month or two, I'll practically be able to walk out my back door and grab some. Farmer's markets will be on every block. And, most importantly, I will be able to support local farms!   
I also learned that it would be best to do this when there aren't as many real-life duties calling my name, such as getting kids to school in a timely manner.  I want them to like me. And last week was putting that to the test!
And, I learned that I should never do a detox at the same time as my spouse.  Never. Ever.
So, waiting a month or two while continuing my normal clean-eating plan, then resuming our experiment during a more relaxed time (when school is out!) and much more economical time (summer produce!) seems to make much more sense.
Finally, after watching the super amazing documentary, Average Joe on the Raw, I saw how I want my life to be. I want *that* level of energy and health.  And after just a few days on the raw diet I was having a hard time picturing myself ever eating meat again, let alone a high meat-based protein diet, and wasn't sure I'd be able to even do the Paleo/Primal part of the experiment. So this time around, we'll start with the Paleo/Primal and then go to Raw...just in case.  ;)
I also learned a few tricks from the movie that will help me make the most of this experiment.  I'll share those as the time is right.  But for now, you'll have to wait in suspense.
So in the meantime, I am going to continue posting healthy recipes like before, and promoting good nutrition advice and articles as I see fit. 
Thanks to everyone for your messages and comments of support!  I can't wait to resume this experiment and get you all involved again!  
If there are any other people who want to join in with us on this experiment, please message me!  It would be fun to see how different people react on these two diets. What can I say, I'm a science geek!  <3