Tuesday, March 17, 2015

Dieting Adventures: Raw Vegan

I joined some gals at work and took part in a five day raw vegan diet. Now, that was the hardest diet ever. Never again! I don't mean to say it isn't a wonderful alternative for those who decide to follow this type of diet, but I will say, it's too hard of a diet for me to personally maintain. This diet was a great short-term detox.

Raw vegan takes vegan to a new level. Not only is this diet about eating meat-free non-processed foods (no animal products at all), but food cannot be altered by heat. Yup, raw means raw. That means raw veggies and juices galore! No sugars, additives, or processing allowed. The most unbelievable thing that came to mind was just how many animal-products and/or processed foods I eat routinely: coffee, meats, cheese, milk, yogurt... all completely off limits.

I survived on plain salads,  nuts, flaxseed snacks and guacamole. Even oatmeal doesn't make the cut as it's considered a cooked product. Yes, cooked oats are technically processed. I enjoyed a horde of salads with lemon, salt and pepper (hold the processed dressings).

Some of the pros included trying various veggies for variety and flavor: radishes, cucumber, kale, etc. etc. Additionally, I drank plenty of water and freed myself, at least momentarily, from my coffee dependency.

Some of the cons: it's hard to eat out, virtually impossible, on this kind of diet. It's also pricey to shop for raw vegan snacks and juices. One lunch consisted of raw juice, almonds, flaxseed "chips" and guac and cost me $16. This isn't to say the diet has to be expensive for everyone. The solution is to pre-plan meals for cost-effectiveness and not attempt to wing it as I sometimes did. Vegetables and fruits aren't expensive in bulk, so stalk up before going this diet route.

I'm happy I tried the raw vegan lifestyle, but I'm equally thrilled it was over in five short days. Raw vegan just isn't for me. How about you?

What are the diets you've tried outside of your comfort zone?

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