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Our brand, iRaw, follows a few core values that form the basis for our product range and overall offering. Our full range ticks three important boxes – Organic, Vegan and Raw. Last year, we spent nearly each month travelling, meeting new people and potential consumers at trade and consumer shows both in the UK and abroad. While we were delighted by the overwhelming response and engagement, we also discovered that many still don’t realise the benefits and nuances behind our approach. Our first blog post of the year focused on a core value close to our hearts – minimising food waste. This question around ‘ what is raw foodism ?’ is one such area we aim to address in the blog post today.
What is Raw Foodism?
A raw food lifestyle, or Raw Veganism as it is sometimes called, is focused on nourishing the body with food in its natural state. This also means you obtain the full spectrum of vitamins, minerals and phytonutrients in their natural state. Furthermore, you also get the enzymes to support digestion of these foods. In this way, you are eating the most natural diet possible, free of all processing and refined ingredients.
There isn’t one single raw food diet or approach. Much like other nutrition approaches, there are many variations and iterations you can look to. The connection point is that the diet does not contain foods that have been pasteurised, homogenised, or produced with the use of synthetic pesticides, chemical fertilisers, industrial solvents or chemical food additives are included. In this way you immediately cut out packaged and processed foods you might find in grocery stores.
Whether you transition 100% and follow this approach or not, one cannot deny the benefit of eating a more plant-based diet, especially in its raw state. So no matter your current diet/lifestyle, take note to add more plant based foods to your plate this year!
What do Raw Foodies Eat?
A raw vegan foodie eats a wide spectrum of foods in their raw state. This includes raw fruits, vegetables, sprouted grains, nuts, seeds, cold pressed oils. Sometimes raw foodies also include raw dairy or coconut based yogurt and kefir. While the foods that are consumed cannot be heated above 48 degrees celcius, you can take advantage of a few ‘cooking’ methods: sprouting, dehydration and fermentation. This provides you with even more cooking opportunities – make raw crackers, dehydrated fruit, veggie crisps, raw yogurt, sauerkraut, kimchi, kombucha and more!
What are the benefits?
There are so many benefits of eating a plant-based diet and even more so again when they are in their raw form! Plants are nutrient powerhouses, full of nutrients to support and nourish your body. Just a few benefits include:
- Digestive support and balance: eating food in its raw form aids digestion, provides fibre and increases the bioavailability of the nutrients consumed.
- Anti-inflammatory – you are removing all possible inflammatory foods i.e. refined, sugary, processed and packaged and you’re also eating a full spectrum of anti-inflammatory, vitamin rich fruits, vegetables and fats.
- Adding more fibre to your diet to help digestion.
- Anti-ageing – raw food rejuvenates our bodies. The cells in our bloodstream are replaced with more nourished and cleaner live cells. Your skin looks much more youthful and elasticity is improved, a healthy glow is restored, and you are less prone to developing skin conditions like acne, dryness, and wrinkles.
- Cancer prevention – You are removing possible carcinogens and pathogens and adding a heap of antioxidants and phytonurients in return!
What are the potential setbacks?
As with a vegan diet, it is really important you are well informed when transitioning to this diet. A vegan diet can still be unhealthy as too can a raw food diet. While vegan products can still be highly refined and full of sugar, a raw diet can be unhealthy simply due by the limited variety of foods consumed resulting in deficiencies.
Both approaches require extra care and even some supplementation when it comes to getting enough amino acids, healthy sources of saturated fats and omega-3s, iron, B vitamins (especially vitamin B12 and folate), zinc, and selenium.
So get plenty of variety, colour and enough calories too! Food is energy!
Not quite ready to go 100%?
Try the following ideas to improve the nutrient density of your plate:
- Fill at least half of your plate with colourful veggies at each meal
- Add ¼ cup fermented foods to your meal – sauerkraut, kimchi, kombucha, yogurt, kefir!
- Cook your food using ‘gentler’ methods like steaming and slow cooking so you don’t expose your food to high heat that might damage the nutrient profile.
- Replace all sugary refined products – this is a no brainer. Try to buy foods with less than five ingredients and get in the kitchen and try your own recipes! Replace refined products with natural ones like coconut sugar, almond flour, dates, maca, hemp/flax/chia and so on.
iRaw’s Approach to Raw Food
Our founder, Asa, has been following a raw vegan lifestyle for over 13 years. She is a firm believer in the benefits of this nutrition approach and is passionate about teaching others the same. In fact, before launching iRaw, Asa taught (and continues to teach) over 3000 students in London in her company: Yuuga Kemistri. The brand iRaw was born out of as an idea to reduce food waste. This was the story behind the first product, Rapples, which then spun into a portfolio of 45 products total. 17 of these are available on our website today.
In addition to minimising food waste, Asa wanted to create a range that offered nutrient density in its raw state. In short, from nature to your lips! Our full range is Vegan, Organic and Raw. So make your snack work for you. Choose foods that nourish and support your body and grab one of our healthy snacks on the go.
And, if you want to grab your 10% discount, simply join our community by clicking the button.