Eating Raw in the Colder Months Ahead: 7 Tips and Tricks for Success

By ionie retreat and raw food cafe

Photo by Pixabay

Photo by Pixabay

With the weather dipping to cooler levels more frequently and the start of winter quickly approaching, it seems like warmer, heated foods often become the meal of choice, even for those who are trying to incorporate more raw foods in their diet. But, whether you’re a seasoned raw eater or just dabbling in all of the amazing benefits raw food eating has to offer our bodies, it is still possible – and even preferable – to consume even more raw foods in the cooler months.

Why is this so? Well, keep in mind that the cooler months also bring on the advent of the sniffles for so many. Consuming even more raw, plant-based foods during these trying months can boost your immune system and help shield you from all of the various sicknesses circulating.  In addition, it is in the late fall and winter months that so many of us feel a draw of our energy, leaving many of us feeling sluggish and even slightly depressed as we hibernate more and interact with the outdoors less. Raw, vegan foods, then, can keep our digestions flowing and enhance our energy and mood when we need it the most!

So, for those of you who want to keep your raw food eating up, here are some tips to keep you on target:

  1. Consider that most raw foods can be served warm. As long as you do not heat foods beyond 118 degrees, you are still eating raw! So, even if you warm up your soups, veggie burgers, noodles, desserts, or anything else for just a few moments to get a little bit of added warmth to your meal, you’re likely to retain all of those original nutrients. Most opting to do this will pop items in the oven at 150 degrees for 10 minutes maximum – and, voila! You have slightly warmed (yet still raw) dishes! Or, if you do not wish to heat up your raw foods, try not to eat your food straight from the refrigerator so it’s not as cold. Eating raw foods at room temperature is just fine – and may leave you feeling warmer!
  2. Think about your heated metabolism. Although it may not feel like from the outside immediately, keep in mind that clean, organic, raw foods stimulate your metabolism like none other, therefore heating the body in way that’s simply not possible with cooked foods. When you’re eating raw, think about how you’re heating up from the inside out, and you’ll feel toastier in no time!
  3. Add warming spices to your raw dishes. Spices such as cayenne pepper, garlic, ginger, and black pepper can all do wonders for heating your digestive fire from within. Try adding these to your raw dishes and drinks for a feeling that will add both flavor and warmth to you raw food meals.
  4. Load up on plant-based carbohydrates. Adding some carb-rich fruits to your juices/smoothies or a fruit-based raw dressing to your salads will give your body the carbohydrates it craves more in the cooler months without sacrificing your endeavor to eat raw. Plus, fruits, in moderation, are a great way to add some extra zing to your raw dishes and can help invoke memories of sunny beach days – putting you in a “warmer” mood from a mental standpoint!
  5. Warm up in other ways. The winter months are the perfect time to get in some well-deserved pampering, so consider taking some warm bathes, getting a massage, heading to Rolfing session, drinking some warm, organic tea, and/or cuddling with your loved ones! There are so many lifestyle-based ways to warm yourself from within, and if you can spend some time on them, you may find you have less of a need for hot foods every day.
  6. Join a group. The winter is the perfect time to find some like-minded raw foodists to help get some support and camaraderie. Find a group on and find yourself surrounded by new ideas and friends, and you’ll likely having no problems keeping your raw food quest up.
  7. Find a great new book. While you’re going to be more cooped up inside, why not work yourself through some recipes in that shiny new raw vegan cookbook you’ve been wanting to try some recipes from? Now is the perfect time to try out new dishes and keep yourself excited about raw foods.

Bonus tip: Visit ionie retreat and raw food café. Our menu is 100 percent organic, vegan, and raw – and we have everything you need to keep your healthy, life-giving lifestyle up through the winter months and beyond! We also offer infra red and oxygen saunas. What a wonderful healthy way to get warm! These treatments also help to strengthen immunity and reduce weight.

With these tips, you may find yourself adapting better to eating raw in the winter months. Your body has an amazing way of adapting, so be patient with yourself and give your body the time it needs to get used to craving raw instead of cooked in the cold months ahead. You may find, over time, that it becomes much easier, and all of us at ionie retreat and raw food café are here to support you all fall and winter long if you have any questions or concerns. We hope to see you soon!

Published on November 29, 2014. Filed under: Eating RawNo Comments

How to Use Food Dehydrators

How to Use Food Dehydrators — powered by ehow
Published on January 20, 2012. Filed under: Eating RawNo Comments

Video on Dehydrating for Eating Raw

Dehydrating Food Tips — powered by ehow
Published on January 20, 2012. Filed under: Eating RawNo Comments

Dehydrating Nuts – Part of Eating Raw

Do you feel like you could never possibly soak and dehydrate your own nuts and seeds? Do you wonder why it is even important? I want to tell you two things:

  1. You can do it!
  2. It is important!

First, soaking and dehydrating your own nuts and seeds requires almost no effort. It does require time, but much less than you think. The time required is not you-working-hard time. It is just a tiny bit of time to get the nuts/seeds soaking, transfer them to the dehydrator, and then put them in a jar when they’re dried out.

Second, soaking nuts is important to do because as-is, nuts and seeds contain enzyme inhibitors. God made them this way. Enzymes are unstable and therefore, He locked them up in the seed until such time as they are needed. The time they are needed is at germination and forward into the growth of the new plant. So that’s what you mimic in your kitchen through soaking – a germination. The water tells the seed it is time to soften up and get ready to grow, and voila! The enzyme inhibitors go away and the enzymes are now available for our use. (Though not a scientific explanation for this process, it is a summary of the effect of what happens.)

Dehydrating the nuts is optional. If you do it, your nuts will be raw and rich with enzymes – as long as the dehydrator is kept below 115 degrees F – and the nuts will be returned to the crispy state that so many recipes require. Not to mention that they taste and feel great when they’re crunchy.

According to Dr. Edward Howell in Enzyme Nutrition, germinated, raw nuts and seeds are an excellent source of digestive enzymes. Most people do not consume enough digestive enzymes. This means their bodies must produce these enzymes, but the human body cannot supply a limitless supply of any kind of enzymes. The more digestive enzymes we have to make, the less metabolic enzymes we can make. The metabolic enzymes run all the systems of our bodies. So you can see that if our bodies must manufacture digestive enzymes (which we could get from food) instead of metabolic enzymes, we would lack the necessary metabolic enzymes to keep our bodies functioning well. Dr. Howell claims that this is one of the reasons we tend toward modern diseases.

Published on January 20, 2012. Filed under: Eating RawNo Comments

Protein and the China Study

The science is clear. The results are unmistakable. 

Change your diet and dramatically reduce the risk of cancer, diabetes, heart disease and obesity.

Respected nutrition and health researcher, Dr. T. Colin Campbell reveals the truth behind special interest groups, government entities and scientists that have taken Americans down a deadly path

Even today, as the low-carb craze sweeps the nation, two-thirds of adults are still obese and children are being diagnosed with Type II diabetes, typically an “adult” disease, at an alarming rate. If we’re eating healthier, why are Americans stricken with heart disease as much as we were 30 years ago?

Drawing on the project findings in rural China, but going far beyond those findings, The China Study details the connection between nutrition and heart disease, diabetes and cancer. The report also examines the source of nutritional confusion produced by powerful lobbies, government entities, and opportunistic scientists. The New York Times has recognized the study (China-Oxford-Cornell Diet and Health Project) as the “Grand Prix of epidemiology” and the “most comprehensive large study ever undertaken of the relationship between diet and the risk of developing disease.”

“After a long career in research and policy-making, I have decided to step ‘out of the system’. I have decided to disclose why Americans are so confused,” said Dr. Campbell. “As a taxpayer who foots the bill for research and health policy in America, you deserve to know that many of the common notions you have been told about food, health and disease are wrong.”

“I propose to do nothing less than redefine what we think of as good nutrition. You need to know the truth about food, and why eating the right way can save your life.”

Early in his career as a researcher with MIT and Virginia Tech, Dr. Campbell worked to promote better health by eating more meat, milk and eggs — “high-quality animal protein … It was an obvious sequel to my own life on the farm and I was happy to believe that the American diet was the best in the world.”

He later was a researcher on a project in the Philippines working with malnourished children. The project became an investigation for Dr. Campbell, as to why so many Filipino children were being diagnosed with liver cancer, predominately an adult disease. The primary goal of the project was to ensure that the children were getting as much protein as possible.

“In this project, however, I uncovered a dark secret. Children who ate the highest protein diets were the ones most likely to get liver cancer…” He began to review other reports from around the world that reflected the findings of his research in the Philippines.

Although it was “heretical to say that protein wasn’t healthy,” he started an in-depth study into the role of nutrition, especially protein, in the cause of cancer.

The research project culminated in a 20-year partnership of Cornell University, Oxford University, and the Chinese Academy of Preventive Medicine, a survey of diseases and lifestyle factors in rural China and Taiwan. More commonly known as the China Study, “this project eventually produced more than 8000 statistically significant associations between various dietary factors and disease.”

The findings? “People who ate the most animal-based foods got the most chronic disease … People who ate the most plant-based foods were the healthiest and tended to avoid chronic disease. These results could not be ignored,” said Dr. Campbell.

In The China Study, Dr. Campbell details the connection between nutrition and heart disease, diabetes, and cancer, and also its ability to reduce or reverse the risk or effects of these deadly illnesses. The China Study also examines the source of nutritional confusion produced by powerful lobbies, government entities, and irresponsible scientists.

The China Study is not a diet book. Consumers are bombarded with conflicting messages regarding health and nutrition; the market is flooded with popular titles like The Atkins Diet and The South Beach Diet. The China Study cuts through the haze of misinformation and delivers an insightful message to anyone living with cancer, diabetes, heart disease, obesity, and those concerned with the effects of aging. Additionally, he challenges the validity of these low-carb fad diets and issues a startling warning to their followers.

Published on January 20, 2012. Filed under: Eating RawNo Comments

Is Eating Raw Safe?

What  about e-coli on spinach, salmonella, parasites?  Aren’t these potential hazards of a raw food diet?  There must have been a reason why people started cooking their food?”

Before people had a refridgerator, cooking their food was the best way to kill parasites and bacteria. Louis Eating raw and refrigerationPasteur “invented” pasteurization to ensure that food was safe to eat for everyone. However, today this method is obsolete and actually hazardous. It doesn’t just kill the bad bacteria, it also kills the good ones, as well as the enzymes, makes the food acidic, takes away vitamins and minerals, etc.

Today, we have much better methods for keeping our food safe. Some methods are:

  • Refridgerating;

  • Food Grade Hydrogen Peroxide;

  • Vacuum Sealing.

Published on January 18, 2012. Filed under: Eating RawNo Comments

Getting Calcium and Iron while Eating Raw

Most of us grew up believing that meat and dairy are the best and highest source of calcium and iron.

So, what if you are on a raw food diet and are vegan – thus don’t eat any cheese and meat? Or, what if you are thinking about eating more raw foods – where will you get your calcium and iron?

Victoria Boutenko, Gabriel Cousens and Brian Clemens have done some great studies on this very thing. They found that the best source of minerals is in green leafy vegetables, sprouts, seaweeds and germinated seeds & nuts.

Ah – the very ingredients of a successful raw routine.

The best vegan source of calcium is sesame seeds. But also almonds, broccoli, cabbage, collards, dandelion greens, dulse (a seaweed), kale, prunes. All of these are much easier to absorb if they are uncooked.

The best vegan sources of iron are spinach, swisschard, prune juice, beet greens, sesame seeds, cashews, raisins, apricots, water melon, kale, sunflower seeds, broccoli, pumpkin seeds, sun dried tomatoes, seaweeds, flax seed. Once again, staples when one is eating raw.

Drinking fresh vegetable juices on a raw vegan diet is very important. Vegetable juices are concentrated mineral juices.


Published on January 18, 2012. Filed under: Eating RawNo Comments

Getting enough Protein while Eating Raw


Where do you get your protein when eating raw? Here are some thoughts that may help you understand:

  • Based on 700 studies, the chief one being by Dr. Campbell, “The China Study” – a diet consisting of about 7% protein is more than enough for most Eating raw - beanspeople.

  • Since raw food has much more usable protein and of higher quality than cooked food. you’ll need less.

  • Studies show that eating vegan protein is much healthier for you than dairy and meat (protein from animals).

  •  Green leafy vegetables, nuts & seeds, (wheat) grasses, sprouts, grains are the best source of non-animal protein.


Published on January 18, 2012. Filed under: Eating RawNo Comments

Eating Raw is Good for the Planet


Eating raw is good for the planet because:

“Assembly-line meat factories consume enormous amounts of energy, pollute water supplies, generate significant greenhouse gases and require ever-increasing amounts of corn, soy and other grains, a dependency that has led to the destruction of vast swaths of the world s tropical rain forests.” NY Times, 2008

  • Raw foodists choose food that is not processed, sprayed with herbicides, pesticides and that is not genetically modified. Today, even a polar bear baby is born with over 200 chemicals in his blood. If you eat raw you contribute to a cleaner world.

  • Most raw foodists are vegan/vegetarian. Marianne Thieme, member of the Dutch parliament since 2996, estimated in 2010 that eating a vegetarian diet will reduce the world s CO2 emission by 58%.

  • You need hundreds of pounds of soy, corn and other grains, to feed the animas until they are ready to be killed. Food necessary to feed the animals until they can be slaughtered. For cows it is estimated that you need 60 pounds of animal feed to get 1 pound of beef.

  • People in Africa die from hunger. Rain forests are cut to make place for soy and corn fields to feed the animals. Soy and corn is heavily sprayed with tremendous amounts of chemicals and genetically modified. These chemicals pollute the earth and what is eaten by the animals is stored their fat.

  • If everyone in the world would stop eating meat, there would be enough grain available to feed the world population (at least) 7 times! If every person in the world would stop eating meat just one day a week, i.e. every Mondayk they would save grains equivalent to feed our world population of 7 billion, ONE time. Just imagine.

    If meat would be of the past. Pollution would decrease tremendously, rain forest would be saved, Assembly-line meat factories would be of the past. Aggressive behavior would disappear largely, as well as obesity and many illnesses. The Dutch government has been talking about a tax on meat. I’m all in for it. World wide a tax on meat with a rate of 1000%!


Published on January 18, 2012. Filed under: Eating RawNo Comments

What to eat when Eating Raw?

What can you eat on a raw food diet?

Generally raw foodists eat at least 75% of raw fruits, vegetables, (germinated) seeds, (germinated) nuts and super foods and sprouts

You can eat them plain or you can juice or blend them for easier absorption.

If you like gourmet foods, there are many raw food cook books telling you how to make gourmet raw food and there are some fantastic raw food restaurants. (Look for ours coming soon.)


Published on January 18, 2012. Filed under: Eating RawNo Comments