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A Raw Low Fat Diet: The Only Way To Go

That our species should follow a raw low fat diet is not a new idea, but merely to return to form.

By the estimate of anthropologists, humans started cooking food anywhere between 30,000 and 250,000 years ago (1), though our distant ancestors first walked this earth 3 to 5 million years ago.

Before this we largely ate like our closest genetic ancestors, the Bonobos (2). We thrived for Milena on a low fat diet of raw fruits and vegetables.

As our diets have strayed farther from this ideal, our health has declined precipitously. At our current low, 36 percent of our overweight population dies from atherosclerosis-related problems and a further 22 percent die of cancer.  

The benefits of returning to a healthy raw food diet are increasingly becoming known, but many raw foodists take the wrong track, aping the fatty standard American diet instead of copying nature, and endangering their health as a result.

Low Fat Diet Nuts

Why High Fat Raw Diets Don't Make Sense

So you want to go raw.

How do you do it? Where will you get your calories?

How about leafy green vegetables?

They're fantastic for us, low in fat, and provide the minerals we need, but there's no way you'll get enough calories from them to meet your requirements.

I need 3,000 calories a day when moderately active, which means that I'd need to eat 98 heads of lettuce (at 49 calories a pop) to meet my target. My stomach can't handle that, frankly, and there are likely few if any who can. I'd be chronically under eating if I tried to go with greens alone.

So perhaps we eat several hundred calories from greens, but where does the rest come from?

You've Basically Got Two Choices: Fats, or Carbohydrates.

By the estimate of Dr. Douglas Graham, most raw foodists take the fat route, averaging at least 60 percent of their calories from fat (3), dwarfing the 40 percent eaters of the Standard American Diet manage.

So where's the fat coming from? Fatty fruits like avocados, coconuts and olives, nut pates and nut butters, tahini dressing for salads, raw "seed cheeses", 100 percent fat raw vegetable oils, raw granola bars, and flax crackers are the usual suspects. Low Fat Diet Oils

I recently received an email from someone asking me why I eat a low fat diet. I gave him a pretty detailed explanation, and he said he disagreed, stating that avocados are "magical", and we need lots of fat.

That's the kind of devotion the rare raw low fat diet eater is up against. You can't really cite a scientific article refuting the magical properties of avocados, and it would be foolish to attempt to demonize fat anyway.

Fat Is Not Evil

Fat is good for us. Your body would fail without it, and it would be next to impossible to eat any diet devoid of fat. Leafy green vegetables average around 10-12 percent fat, and an orange has 2 percent of its calories coming from fat.

The body uses fat in its production of hormones, to regulate the uptake of nutrients and for the excretion of waste products. It insulates the body and protects our organs from shock.

Essential fatty acids (the ones the body can't produce itself) must be consumed in foods. How do we get them? Two thousand calories of fruit will meet your daily requirements, as will 300 calories of leafy green vegetables (4), or some combination thereof.

There is no need at all for anyone to consume overt fats, though there's nothing inherently wrong with doing so. There are, however, plenty of reasons not to over consume fats, and avocados will unfortunately never be magical.

The Consequences of Not Eating A Low Fat Diet

Low Fat Diet CrackersA raw low fat diet is crucial because of what it prevents. Just because a fat is raw doesn't mean it's harmless.

Eating fat instead of carbohydrates (from fruits and vegetables) leads to cravings, mood swings, lack of energy, and dearth of nutrients over time.

Even if you're maintaining an appropriate weight, you'll constantly battle a desire for cooked foods with insignificant sugar carbohydrates to sate your brain.

Raw fat can build up in arteries just liked cooked fat. Raw foodists have even been known to undergo heart bypass surgery because they've been eating so much raw fat (5).

Low Fat Diet: Fat  Can Give You Type II Diabetes

You can easily give yourself diabetes by eating a high fat diet.

Duke University researchers found that they could give mice diabetes by upping the their fat intake to 40 percent of calories or higher, and could subsequently easily reverse the disease by bringing fat intake to 10 percent of calories (6).

Those mice could eat as much sugar and carbohydrates as they liked as long as they stayed away from the fat. Humans are no different. Eat all the low fat fruit you like and you'll have no blood sugar problems at all.

Type two diabetes can be prevented and reversed in this way. Dr. Doug Graham speaks of doing so with multiple patients (7).

Statistically, populations that eat primarily carbohydrates (such as low-fat fruit) rarely develop diabetes, and those that have type two diabetes can often reverse it with low fat carbohydrate based diets (9).

Low Fat Diet InsulinEven with Type I Diabetes, which is difficult or possibly impossible to shake, a low fat diet will remarkably improve health. Insulin works less effectively when people eat fatty foods, and diets containing less fat improve insulin sensitivity (8).

Fat: The Cause of Candida

Candida is a natural yeast our body creates to feed off of any excess sugar we have in our bloodstream.

It's a natural function that serves a useful purpose, but some people get swarmed by it. The reason is because there's too much sugar trapped in their bloodstream, but not, as might seem logical, because they're eating too much sugar.

Every bit of fat, protein, and carbohydrates we consume has to be converted by the body into simple sugars before it can be used by the body, so even eating a 100 percent fat diet will not get all of the sugar out of your bloodstream (10).

The solution lies in addressing the reason why the sugar is trapped in the blood stream- the high levels of fat in the diet. When fat is present, it lines the intestinal walls, blocking sugar's uptake into the blood stream, and then it uptake into the cells.

The body exhausts itself trying to remove sugar from the blood (11) When this happens, sugar starts to back up, and Candida swoops in to take care of it.

Most people can completely eliminate Candida by eating a raw low fat diet for a few weeks.

More Reasons To Try A Raw Low Fat Diet

Anecdotally, I can tell you that a low fat diet will just give you way more energy than high fat one. Most of my athletic achievement has been reached after long periods with no overt fats.

Fats also serve as an emotional sedative. Ever notice that people frequently fall asleep on the couch after massive meals like Thanksgiving dinner? Low Fat Diet Street Running The reason is that they've given their body such a massive digestive load it needs to turn off the mind so it can concentrate on the food. To a lesser extent, that's what happens with all fat consumption.

A ripe peach is quickly digested, but fatty nuts can sit in the stomach and intestines for hours, drawing power away from your mind and your ability to process emotions.

Your emotions are stunted, which is why people often eat when they're upset. Eat healthfully, feel your emotions, and find your true self.

A Healthly Low Fat Diet: Watch Your Intake

There's nothing wrong with a periodic avocado, but overt fat should not be a staple of your diet. It's best to let fat clear from your bloodstream, and indulge in a fatty meal no more than several times a month.

Overall, aim to keep the percentage of calories that come from fat below 10 percent over extended periods of time (it's ok to have days with fat above 10 percent).

Use low fat fruit as your mainstay and you won't regret it.

A Raw Low Fat Diet: Following Up

Read how to deal with cravings on a raw low fat diet.

Read about the healthy lifestyle that should accompany a raw food diet here.

Low Fat Diet Sources:

(1) Pennisi, Elizabeth, "Did Cooked Tubers Spur the Evolution of Big Brains?" Science, Volume 283, number 5410 Issue of 26 March 1999
(2) "Divergence time and population size in the lineage leading to modern humans". Theor Popul Biol 48 (2): 198–221. doi:10.1006/tpbi.1995.1026.
(3) Graham, Dr. Douglas, "The 80/10/10 Diet," pg 128
(4) Dina, Dr. Rick, "Essential Fats and the Organic Athlete Part II" http://www.curezone.com/blogs/fm.asp?i=967912
(5) Graham, Dr. Douglas, "The 80/10/10 Diet," pg 129-130
(6) "Low-Fat Diet Alone Reversed Type 2 Diabetes in Mice," press release dated September 10, 1998 from the Duke University Medical Center.
(7) Graham, Dr. Douglas, "The 80/10/10 Diet," pg 42
(8) Lovejoy, J.C., M.M Windhauser, J.C. Rood, and J.A. De La Bretonee. 1998. "Effects of a controlled high-fat versus low-fat diet on insulin sensitivity and leptin levels in African-American and Caucasian Women." Metab. 47: 1520-24.
(9) Kiehm TG, Anderson JW, Ward K. Beneficial effects of a high carbohydrate, high fiber diet on hyperglycemic diabetic men. Am J Clin Nutr. 1976 Aug;29(8):895-9.
(10) Chapter 3:Calculation Of The Energy Content of Foods - Energy Conversion Factors http://www.fao.org/docrep/006/Y5022E/y5022e04.htm
(11) Pritkin, Nathan and Patrick M. McGrady, Jr , "The Pritkin Program For Diet and Exercise"

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