Why I Eat Raw Food

by Susan on March 24, 2010

“This is why I care so much about raw food. If you keep the temp beneath 116 degrees, the enzymes within the food stay alive, the vitamins don’t get denatured and because it is a more natural way to eat, it helps our digestion. It helps the absorption of the correct nutrients.”  -Dr. Mehmet Oz

I listened to Dr. Oz talk about eating a raw food diet to a man who was over weight, and running a very high risk of early death because of his diet. His brother had already passed away from a massive heart attack. As I sat and listened, I thought about what brought me to the raw food diet. How it makes sense to me and how much better I feel when I am eating a raw diet.

My own brother passed away at the age of 45 from a massive heart attack. He was over weight, had developed type two diabetes, and smoked. He was a funny, warm human being with a daughter and a new puppy. He thought he was coming down with the flu and with in less than an hour, he was dead. They found him laying on the ground, next to his truck. He didn’t have a chance. Or did he?

At 47, I found myself over weight, short of breath, having chest pains, and joint pains. I had been put on a prescription for Prilosac because every time I ate, I had terrible acid reflux. I had been athletic all of my life and hardly had ever even taken an aspirin. But something  happened to me when I wasn’t paying attention. My diet caught up with me and I was scared.

My brother didn’t realize what was happening. I am sure he had experienced some of the same symptoms I was having. It was too late for him, it wasn’t too late for me. I knew it was time for a change.

Since going raw, I have eliminated all of my symptoms. I still have periods when my diet goes to hell (like this Christmas) and all the symptoms immediately come flooding back. It is pretty profound and an amazing that my body so eagerly lets me know that it doesn’t approve of my choices. I always find my way back to raw food.

My brother no longer has a choice. I do. I choose raw.

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{ 23 comments… read them below or add one }

Erin @ Living and Loving In L.A. March 24, 2010 at 10:58 pm

Susan!
That’s such a great story. I’m so proud of you for turning your life around and being an inspiration for others like myself.
Big hugs,
Erin

bitt March 24, 2010 at 11:21 pm

So sorry about your brother. Many would chose to ignore their own symptoms. You took a stand.

Pure2Raw Twins March 25, 2010 at 8:16 am

Sorry to hear about your brother. Love learning more about your story and why you went raw! Very inspiring :) xoxo

Elizabeth March 25, 2010 at 9:43 am

What an inspiring story, Susan. You touch the lives of many. I am so sorry for the loss of your brother. You changed your life & in turn have changed the lives of others–what a gift that is! Warm wishes, Elizabeth

Maha March 25, 2010 at 10:12 am

Everyone has a story or reason they are trying to improve their health with raw food, thank you for sharing yours. You have helped many with your new found health and hope the best for you and your niece.

Nancy Zare, WellnessWiz March 25, 2010 at 10:31 am

That’s an eye-opener. Although I don’t have such a dramatic story, I’ve chosen to eat healthy (note, raw is not the goal, healthy is. Right now I’m nearly 100% raw because it’s working and I feel terrific) to prevent illness such as heart disease and cancer. The bonus is that I’ve got lots of energy and feel great.

Melissa March 25, 2010 at 10:42 am

I’m very sorry about your brother. Your story is truly inspirational! Good for you for not letting it happen to you and changing your life:) Thank you for sharing and many blessings to you!

jessie R March 25, 2010 at 10:44 am

Thanks Susan for your story. You are an inspiration and a true blessing.. Thank you for helping us.

Warmly,
Jessie R.

Elizabeth March 25, 2010 at 10:55 am

Thanks for sharing your story. I can easily find my own experience in your words. I’m amazed at the way my body leads me back again and again to raw foods and how incredibly well I feel when I am eating this way. When I am really eating a great raw diet cooked food is quite unappealing. The benefits of my diet are so real. What leads me away from raw is not that the food is not satisfying for me, but usually some social issue- holidays, eating away from home, etc. I have always had a very healthy diet and sometimes I rationalize eating a more “moderate” healthy diet. The only issue I have with it is that my body is not happy with it. I find I do best with a diet that is all raw vegan with a moderate quantity of sprouted Ezeikiel or Manna breads from time to time.

zc March 25, 2010 at 12:49 pm

What an inspiration you are !! My heart rejoices for you.

Always wishing you all the best !!

Veggie Girl is Living Rawesome March 25, 2010 at 2:07 pm

Powerful! Thanks for sharing your story!

Tressey March 25, 2010 at 2:49 pm

Thank you for sharing you life with us on a deeper level. I applaud you and support your efforts. I extend my deepest sorrow to you over the lost of your brother.

MJ March 25, 2010 at 4:09 pm

Susan,

Thank you for sharing yourself with so many of us…your passion for life and depositing into the lives of others flows through the posts on this blog. My codolesences to you in the passing of your brother. You are right, your brother no longer has a choice. BUT, you are paying tribute to him by impacting the lives of so many people who visit your blog and are exposed to the multiple resources you make available, whether its touting the benefits of a healthy lifestyle, or tempting us with simple exoctic and delicious meals that not only would reap praise from our families or guests but would also make Julia Childs say, “wow, she/he must have been trained in the Culinary Halls of New York or Paris.” Our response would be, “yes we were indeed trained by one of the best…. in the Culinary Halls of Rawmazing under the tutledge of Chef Susan!!

Be Blessed and thanks for your heart of sharing and passion for the lives of others.

MJ

Jessie R March 25, 2010 at 8:32 pm

Susan,

By following a raw diet; do you still watch your calorie intake and/or how much you eat through out your day?

Jessie

El March 25, 2010 at 11:09 pm

It sounds like quite a wake up call and that you made the right choice. Your strawberry photo is beautiful. Love the light, shadow and depth.

Susan March 26, 2010 at 7:14 am

I don’t watch how much I eat or the calorie intake as much as I watch what I am eating and if it is balanced. That is one of the beautiful things about the raw diet. That said, you can’t eat high calorie raw desserts all day and in large quantity and be balanced.

Dot D. March 26, 2010 at 8:28 am

Thank you for the personal note. We all have a story inside us that makes us choose the way the go about doing things in our lives….some more poignant than others, but still, they are heard and that’s the good news!

Susan, what do you consider “a balanced diet” on raw foods?

Amy March 26, 2010 at 8:49 am

I just recently experienced the “off raw” feeling. I have been eating more raw since January and then this month went all raw. I was feeling great….and then I decided one night to have lasagna and garlic bread with the family instead of my usual big dinner salad. After all, one cooked meal wasn’t going to kill me. Ugh! I did not feel good afterwards or have lots of energy like when I eat my raw food. Now I just remember that feeling when some cooked food is tempting me. I know it might taste good, but it won’t make me FEEL good – and that is more important.
Blessings!
Amy

Dot D. March 26, 2010 at 11:15 am

Amy, I concur with that. Had my own experience after this weekend with some Italian food in the company of others. What a big, big mistake! It’s taken me all week to recover! Cheers to raw foods, energy and life. Onward…..

Elena March 26, 2010 at 11:27 am

That is quite a powerful reason, Susan. I am glad you made changes before it was too late. Sorry to hear about your brother.

Shannon March 27, 2010 at 2:27 pm

Thank you so much for sharing this with us. This really hit home for me and is a great reminder of why we choose this lifestyle. It’s also comforting to know that you and others have had slip ups as well, we just have to listen to our bodies and remember why we are doing this in the first place. Thank you again.

Heather March 28, 2010 at 10:13 pm

Powerful story, Susan. Thanks so much for reminding me how important it is to take care of our bodies.

Sandra March 31, 2010 at 5:23 pm

Thank you for sharing your own personal story! It is such an inspiration! I’m very choosy with what I eat – and it’s nice to know that there are others out there with the same determination to stay healthy. I’m about to try the raw food diet and will look to your blog for more inspiration. Keep up the good work!

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