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Opening My Bag of Raw Food Hate Mail!

Opening my Bag of Hatemail!

Today, I’m opening my bag of “hatemail!” Yes, sometimes I receive negative comments, and I feel I have to address some of them today. Watch the video below to watch me answer my bag of hatemail!

Did you like this video? Let me know in the comment section! Below I’m answering some more “legitimate” questions…

Fermented Soy

Can fermented soy powder be part of a raw food diet since the soy is “predigested”? Same question regarding soy yogurt since beneficial bacteria “predigest” it.

ANSWER:

Soy is not really a health food at all. It is now widely grown as a GMO and you find it in many refined packaged foods for extra added protein, just like wheat and dairy seem to lace everything Americans ingest these days.  It was actually used by the rural Chinese to add nitrogen to the soil for other crops and not eaten as a food unless they were experiencing famine.

Soy is being fed to grazing animals as well and getting far more praise than it deserves.  Just because a food is high in protein is no conclusive reason to eat it.

Soy is mostly marketed to vegans and vegetarians as a complete protein because of it’s amino acid profile, but we know that humans do not need to eat foods with all the amino acids present in one single meal, as we have a store and recycle them as needed.

Yogurt bacteria is not similar to bacteria in our gut so there is no reason to consume it for beneficial bacteria as likely all of the bacteria gets destroyed when it hits out stomach acid.

You are asking if this should be part of a raw food diet. You should be asking is this a healthful food? and then based on your answer decide if you’d like to include it in your diet for health reasons or for personal reasons.

I don’t see any benefits from eating soy that you couldn’t get in a safer form from fruits and vegetables.  I personally try to stay away from GMO’s and mass produced filler foods.

Olives

Hi Frederic! I really enjoyed reading your “Raw Secrets” book. What do you think of eating olives? Do olives have a high nutritional value? Some of the gourmet olives taste great although they use too much salt so I usually soak the olives in water and rinse them before eating to reduce the salt. I like olives, but I am just concerned about the excess salt. Since olives are also high in fat, how many do you recommend eating for one serving? Thanks.

ANSWER:

Olives, like avocado, are much higher in fat than other fruits, and will increase your overall fat percentage exponentially.

They cannot really be eaten raw, they must be salted or put in vinegar which isn’t a healthful reason to eat them either.

I have on occasion eaten them to enjoy the taste, but my opinion is to enjoy them sparingly or go for the canned ones.  Most raw-foodists will tell you to eat large amounts of raw olives without care, but these olives are very high in fat and salt. Canned black olives are dramatically lower in fat and have much less salt and vinegar than any jarred or homemade ones. I’m not saying I recommend canned black olives, but they would be a better choice than even raw, heavily salted and oiled olives.

You can check out the nutritional content and fat content of any food on www.fitday.com . It is free to join as well to track your daily calories.

Digestion and Supplements

The idea that one can get all of one’s nutrients from fruits, vegetables, nuts, and seeds is good. I heartily agree. However, I am 63 and found out that I have celiac disease about 5 years ago. My problem is malnutrition, brain fog on occasion, etc. I need additional help. Also, my digestion doesn’t seem to be working as well as when I was younger. Consequently, I do take some supplements. Anything your research turns up to help us older folks digest our food better is welcome. (I do take enzymes to help digest food).

ANSWER:

On a raw or even high raw diet based on fruits and vegetables you should have no problem finding enough foods to get calories while avoiding the harmful wheat gluten that is in almost every packaged food and spice.

I have found that my digestion is optimal when consuming blended or pureed raw fruits and greens.  You can do fruit smoothies, green smoothies or blended salads, aka veggie stews.  Essentially you are breaking down all of the cellulose and making more of the vitamins and minerals bio available as they are almost pre digested by your blender.  This especially helps growing bodies and those who want to gain weight or maintain proper nutrition with compromised digestion.

Try it out, before you go for supplements start your morning with a fruit or green smoothie.  Add a little water and bananas and some frozen berries or some juicy fruits like mangos or papayas and bananas,

Try just eating another smoothie or two or some fresh fruit.  Make sure you eat enough that you are not still hungry, fruit is lower in calories than refined foods and starches.

For dinner have some more cut up fruit and try a blended salad!  It is so much easier to get your daily dose of greens and in larger quantities than you might want if you had to chew them.  Blend a tomato or two, cucumber, celery stalks, some dates or mango (for sweetness to offset the blandness), some fresh herbs of choice and 2 heads of mild lettuce or romaine and any other seasoning you like. Blend it on low to medium so that it is not a puree like your smoothie. I like to chop some additional veggies and put it on top.   Try out some different variations and see what you like and I’m sure you will get all the nutrition you need. A great program I love for easily digestable raw foods is the Savory Veggie Stew program by Roger Haeske.

Problems with Frozen Fruits

Aloha Frederic! You mentioned in one of your Q&A’s that frozen fruit created problems. What kind of problems? I really like my smoothies cold, but I want to get the most out of them. Smiles, Lynda

ANSWER:

It would be too many frozen foods that could negatively affect the digestive flora, and associated production of vitamin B-12. Dr. Graham claimed that his vitamin B12 deficiency he experienced many years ago was caused by a regular period of consuming ice-cold smoothies.

Also, now with it being winter, you don’t want to consume foods that are too cold because it will truly make you shiver. Make sure to keep warm if drinking cold drinks during the winter.

I enjoy some smoothies cool, but anything that is too thick and too cold I wait until it melts a bit before consuming it. In my opinion, cool is okay, but “cold” should be avoided, most of the time.

The Truth About Chiropractic and Massage

Thank you for all your work fred! Question, what is the truth about 1) Chiropractic and 2) massage?

ANSWER:

Chiropractic services can be great for people with specific issues that need immediate attention, but some chiropractors do make false claims about what it can do for the overall body’s health.  In many typical American more or less sick individuals it is a temporary fix to a poor lifestyle and requires regular treatments for them to see any relief.

I personally don’t get it done regularly but I have in the past if I had an urgent problem.

Massages are great for relaxation and improved circulation. I certainly enjoy them on occasion.  They can be quite expensive as a temporary fix though.  Also every massage therapist has a different level of training and their techniques differ so I can’t really say much as each person’s experience isn’t the same. You will never fix a problem that is nutritionally-based with a quick-fix like massage.

I find that proper hydration and exercise are two of the best ways to maintain a healthy back and circulatory system. Treatments can offer a temporary fix for a few days, but if your problems keep coming back turn to your lifestyle for the answer to that.

Enzyme Controversy

Hi, “Enzymes Perhaps you should drink wheatgrass juice for enzymes? As I explained before, enzymes are molecules produced by organisms (plants or animals) to use on their own for certain chemical reactions. The plant produces its own enzymes to digest the nutrients that it needs! You produce your own enzymes for your own needs. Taking it plant enzymes will not benefit you in any way, as these enzymes are not compatible and are destroyed anyway in the stomach. ” Now, that statement really confused me. Because of enzymes (at least it is one reason) we eat RAW food!!!! Do you really mean that all that Dr Ann Wigmore had written, studied and so on has been rubbish???? I use wheatgrass juice, and it doesn’t taste so bad. And why do you think that cows are eating it all the time. In wintertime it is not available at all, at least fresh… BR, Raija

ANSWER:

Eating raw foods for enzymes is a widely accepted reason, but just has no basis in fact at all. We eat raw food because it is healthier, contains all of it’s natural vitamins and minerals and is higher in water than cooked food which is dehydrated and adulterated by cooking.

The body produces its own enzymes according to what is required in the stomach.  If it didn’t and you simply RAN OUT of enzymes and were eating let’s say a steak, your body would have a hard time indeed trying to get the food out of your stomach before it’s next meal.

I think you are taking this a little too personally.  I am not discrediting the work Ann Wigmore did to promote sprouts and raw foods, but there are easier ways to go about a healthy raw food diet. If we did not take what we learned in the past and tried to improve it for the future we’d still be stuck in the stone age and probably NOT be eating a healthy vegan raw food diet.

Also I am not sure what your reaction to the taste of wheatgrass has to do with why cows eat grass.  They are designed to eat grass! Humans are not. If you gave wheatgrass juice to a baby or a child, I’m sure you get an interesting reaction indeed.  Carnivores have sensors on their tongue that pick up amino acids, they do not taste meat the same way we do, if they did you can bet they wouldn’t be eating dead flesh.  Not all pastures of grazing cattle experience winter either, but those that do I’m sure the rancher takes care of them and has dried grass or hay to feed during that time.

Raw Vegan Mentor Club

Frederic Patenaude
Frederic Patenaude

Frederic Patenaude has been an important influence in the raw food and natural health movement since he started writing and publishing in 1998, first by being the editor of Just Eat an Apple magazine. He is the author of over 20 books, including The Raw Secrets, the Sunfood Cuisine and Raw Food Controversies. Since 2013 he’s been the Editor-in-Chief of Renegade Health.


Frederic loves to relentlessly debunk nutritional myths. He advocates a low-fat, plant-based diet and has had over 10 years of experience with raw vegan diets. He lives in Montreal, Canada.