Raw Vegan Diet is a nutritional concept that combines veganism concept and raw foodism. This diet is made up of unprocessed uncooked vegan foods that have not been exposed to heat that is above 46 degrees. The subscribers of this diet are known as raw foodists and they believe that cooking food in excess of this temperature destroys enzymes. As they purport, this culminates in loss of a substantial amount of nutritional value thus the food becomes detrimental to the body (Straus, Howard, and Barbara). On the other hand, they believe that raw foods afford active enzymes and suitable nutrition. Additionally, proponents of the diet hold that there are numerous benefits associated with it. A few of these benefits are clear skin, improved general health, more energy, improved digestion and weight loss. However, some of the claims pertaining to the vegan diet have not been verified scientifically and are either based on partial truth or total myth.
As research has showed, a majority of the people illuminate that they consume total raw food or a high percentage, approximately 75 to 90, raw diet (Tuso, 61). According to Straus, a small percentage, approximately 10, include unrefined dairy products in their nutrition but the majority strictly subscribe to raw vegan diet. In recent years, the percentage of the population which subscribe to raw vegan diet have increased significantly in food restaurants present in most key cities (Gorski). As Gerson argues, raw vegan diet heals diseases such as cancer. According to WHO (World Health Organization), 30 percent of cancer cases are caused by poor diets (Straus, Howard, and Barbara). Through the application of Gerson Therapy, one percent of these causes can be prevented thus culminating to about 1,300 cases (Straus, Howard, and Barbara). This saves about $20,000 per year that would otherwise be used in buying drugs.
There are several case studies from different sources that elucidate on people’s encounters with raw vegan diet in curing different diseases. The first case is on Gerson’s mission to cure his troubling migraines (Straus, Howard, and Barbara). As he purports, he commenced by consuming apples only and with time, he realized that the migraines disappeared. Slowly, he added other diets after quickly learning the type of food he could handle. Through this trial method, he developed a special diet that excellently cured his migraines in the long run. He suggested this diet to several other patients with migraines and it worked successfully. The second case study is evident from Dr. Gabriel’s endeavor on curing diabetes. According to Gabriel, “Curing disease is not only about medications, but also about changing habits and looking at the broader picture” (Alvarado).
He also purports that he cured five critical cases of patients with incurable emotional difficulties that were evident psychosomatically a situation that alerted him to the effects of an unhealthy body to the mind. He thus founded the famous “Tree of Life Rejuvenation Center” that advocates for use of raw food and vegan diet in treating and preventing dietary diseases such as cancer and diabetes for a healthy life (Alvarado). According to a research done by Dr. Stephen in 2001, “a caloric restriction of 40 percent in diets increased anti-aging and anti-cancer genes” (Gorski). This is the ground on which Dr. Gabriel foundation operates. The central assertion is that cooked food lose 50 percent of proteins, 70-80 percent of vitamins and approximately 95 percent of various nutrients. Therefore, eating raw food assists a person in consuming half as many nutrients and thus enable him or her turn against all the dietary diseases and aging genes.
The third case study is on Kristine Matheson who was diagnosed with cancer in 2005 and the doctor notified her that she had less than a year to live (Alvarado). She had lungs and lymph nodes tumors. After nine years, she came back claiming that the use raw vegan diet was her life-saving endeavor because it cured her cancer. She now holds seminars and retreats all over Australia and has released a book on the use of vegan diet in beating cancer for a healthy life (Alvarado).
The last case study is a testimony by Chris Wark who woke up in hospital in the eve of 2003 with 30 percent of his colon removed because of cancer and was diagnosed with colon cancer stage three (Chris). The doctor prescribed a chemotherapy of between 6 to 12 months in his case. When at home thinking, a friend of his dad sent a book on how a friend used raw vegan diet to cure cancer. After reading the book, Chris started to skip Chemo sessions in favor of raw vegan diet. He adopted the consumption of fruits, raw vegetables, three liters of fresh vegetal juice each day, seeds and nuts. With the help of integrative oncology, he undertook all natural non-toxic treatments and thus the body healed and his lifestyle was radically transformed. After ten years of diagnosis, Chris, and his wife have two daughters and he is cancer-free and physically healthy.
Reasons Why This Topic Is an Issue
The number one reason as to why this topic is an issue is because many diseases can be cured using raw vegan diet (Maria). Some of the diseases that have been allegedly healed using this diet are cancer, obese and diabetes. Second, going raw see many people take care of their health through the kitchen (Maria). For many people, ordering of eating out is the usual habit in their lives. For many years, raw food in local restaurants have been non-existent and the available menu items are unhealthy junk foods. Going vegan will, therefore, force an individual into cooking his or her own food at home. In overall, this tendency leads to consumption of more energetic diets with proper ingredients to fight and prevent dietary diseases (Samuels).
The third reason is that establishing a raw vegan dietary behavior leads one to discovering food intolerance (Samuels). Orienting with raw vegan diet enables a person to keep away from common allergenic foods such as soy, sugar, dairy, and wheat. When these allergens are cut out entirely, the individual is bound to experience a healthy lifestyle (Samuels). The fourth reason is that doing raw vegan make someone more intuitive (Tuso, 64). This assertion is achieved through the consumption of a clean diet make of fresh vegetables and fruits free from processing chemicals and the allergens. Allegedly, the individual’s intuition increases in a way that he or she see things with clarity thus becoming more focused and sees the world in a different perspective (Tuso, 65). The fifth reason is that doing raw vegan stops one’s cravings of different chemical affiliations such a craving for coffee, tea, alcohol and sugar (Tuso, 65). These cravings are gradually replaced with the cravings for vegan diet stuffs thus leading to a healthy lifestyle.
The Affected and Why
Raw vegan diet issue can affect anybody ranging from healthy individuals as well as those sick from dietary diseases such as obesity, cancer, and diabetes. These healthy individuals are affected in that their unhealthy lifestyles can lead to dietary diseases but can be prevented by raw vegan diet habit. Similarly, the ailing individuals are affected in that their dietary diseases can be cured by practicing raw vegan diet habits. This has been witnessed from the testimonies of different individuals who struggled with certain dietary diseases as discussed above. The fact that we live in a world full of invisible toxic substances present in daily foods is a guarantee that everybody is affected by this issue. As such, we are obliged to practice healthy dietary and lifestyle habits.
There are several treatment methods for using raw vegan diets as proposed by Gerson (Gorski). The first method is juicing. According to Gerson, fresh-pressed extract from raw foodstuffs affords the easiest way of giving high-grade nutrition. Juicing enables the patients to take in enzymes and nutrients from approximately 15 pounds of foodstuff each day in an easy manner for absorption and digestion (Straus). In Gerson therapy, a cancer patient can take up to four liters of fresh juice. The fresh juice is prepared on an hourly basis from fresh vegetables and fruits using a grinding juicer or a blender.
The second method is use of supplement in which, Gerson proposes the use of certain medications to supplement the juicing treatment. These medications are organic and are prescribed in therapeutic amounts. Some of these medications are vitamin B-12, pancreatic enzymes, potassium compound, thyroid hormones and Lugol’s solution. The third treatment method is detoxification in which coffee enemas are used as the primary technique for detoxification (Wanjek). Cancer patients might consume a maximum of 5 enemas of coffee every day.
These treatment methods and the issues are the use of raw vegan diet are learned either from own experience as witnessed from the testimonies of different individuals or from other people’s experiences. After some victims or people looking forward to a healthy life learn from others, they develop an urge of unearthing the issue which gives way to either failure or success. It is evident from the available information that most of these cases of the trial have succeeded.
My personal opinion on this issue is that this is not a mainstream knowledge the juicing diet (certain kinds of fruits and veggies) can assist the body to obtain a natural ability to heal itself. As such, it is more profitable for people to go through chemotherapy and all of the cancer treatments through cancer centers rather than using raw vegan diet to cure. As research has showed, there are various misconceptions about the use of raw vegan diets. First, there is a misconception that cooked food is not nutritious since the nutrients have been destroyed when cooking. It is experimentally proven that cooked food is nutritious only that cooking tears the fibers and the cellular walls apart. Cooked tomatoes, for example, increases the availability of antioxidant lycopene just like cooking carrots avail beta-carotene for easy absorption (Straus).
The second misconception is that the enzymes are destroyed by cooking. Although this assertion is true, human bodies produce their own enzymes to aid in digestion hence, the destroyed food enzymes do not matter (Straus). The third misconception which drives me into supporting the use of doctor’s path as opposed to raw vegan diet is that raw vegan nutrition detoxifies. This assertion has little scientific credibility and thus, detoxification can only be effective through the use of scientific methods. This is so because this dietary detoxification notion targets on the colon and the liver only but toxins can accumulate anywhere in the human’s body (Wanjek).
In conclusion, the use of raw vegan diet in preventing and treating dietary diseases for a healthy lifestyle have gained popularity especially in the current century when dietary diseases are on the rise. Many people including the doctors have claimed that these diet is capable of healing and preventing certain diseases such as cancer and diabetes. Some of the evident testimonies have been discussed in the above essay in details. However, I am of the opinion that the scientific medical way is the best as opposed to raw vegan diet. This stand is exacerbated by the various misconceptions around the raw vegan diet issue as discussed in the above essay.
Alvarado, Paula. “Dr. Gabriel Cousens On Curing Diabetes With Raw Food And On Why Going Vegan Makes Sense.” TreeHugger. N.p., 2010. Web. 1 Apr. 2015.
Esselstyn, Caldwell B. “Prevent and Reverse Heart Disease.” New York: Avery, 2007. Print.
Gorski, David. “Simply Raw: Making Overcooked Claims about Raw Food Diets.” Science-Based Medicine. N.p., 2011. Web. 1 Apr. 2015.
Maria, Lisa. “Can Diet Alone Cure Deadly Disease? – Manifest Wellness.” Manifest Wellness. N.p., 2013. Web. 1 Apr. 2015.
Samuels, Simone. “7 Benefits I Never Expected When I Went On A Raw Foods Diet.” MindBodyGreen. N.p., 2014. Web. 1 Apr. 2015.
Straus, Howard, and Barbara Marinacci. “Dr. Max Gerson.” Healing the Hopeless; Totality Books. Second edition. 2009. Print.
Tuso, Philip. “Nutritional Update for Physicians: Plant-Based Diets.” permj 17.2 (2013): 61-66. Web. 1 Apr. 2015.
Wanjek, Christopher. “Reality Check: 5 Risks of Raw Vegan Diet.” LiveScience.com. N.p., 2013. Web. 1 Apr. 2015.
Wark, Chris. “Chris’s Story: How a Vegan Diet Helped Me Conquer Colon Cancer.” Everydayhealth.com. N.p., 2014. Web. 1 Apr. 2015.