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My journey into the raw world

June 6, 2009

During the summer before my senior year of high school, I discovered vegetarianism. I had always thought vegetarians were weirdos who took drugs and did not pay their taxes, and I was surprised to learn that was not always true. Learning about this lifestyle was inspiring, and I knew it was exactly what I should do. I was motivated by all of the reasons—spiritual, environmental, health benefits—in my choice to avoid consuming any animal products in which animals had to die.

I continued this lifestyle through college were I found support from peers and college town restaurants. After college, my now husband and I moved to Portland, OR, where we found an amazing network of healthy and vegetarian lifestyles.

Then we moved back to my home, Atlanta, GA where I became a 4th grade teacher. From the home cooked holiday meals to the free snacks at school, I was gaining weight. When we moved to GA, I had bought a wardrobe of “professional clothes” to wear to school that did not fit me a year and a half later. I felt bloated and uncomfortable.

This past January, for the start of the new year, my 4th grade team initiated a Biggest Loser contest to motivate us all to be a little healthier. I knew I had to take this seriously and make a new lifestyle change. I stumbled across the raw food lifestyle on the internet, and after hours of reading, I was convinced that this was the most logical and healthiest thing I could possibly do.

We weighed in for our Biggest Loser contest. I set a goal weight for myself, the weight listed on my driver’s license. I bought a spiralizer and Ani’s Raw Food Kitchen and slowly began transitioning my meals into raw foods. I have been obsessed with reading Sewing, Crafting, and Photography blogs for years, but now my free time is consumed with Raw Food Blogs.

So for those of you that are not really sure about the raw food lifestyle:

A raw foodist eats meals consisting of at least 75- 100% of uncooked, unprocessed foods. These fruits, veggies, and nuts should be organic and locally produced as much as possible. If they heat their food, it should not reach temperatures higher than 115˚ (or 105˚ if you are stricter) to keep maximum nutrition and healthy enzymes. Eating raw does not mean giving up everything that you once loved. It is all about balance, and since there is only a 75% raw minimum, you have the flexibility to eat a cooked food from time to time. Even if you do not want to commit to 75%, the more raw foods you eat, the healthier you will be!

Our contest lasted a little less than 4 months. On our final weigh in day, my weight was exactly, to the exact pound, my goal weight! I was super excited– I had lost 12.6 lbs during the contest and never felt better.

The whole process was very similar to becoming a vegetarian. I love learning about where foods come from and how the foods I eat affect my body. Being a raw foodist has made me become more open to trying new foods. I love to eat, and it may sound like I am limiting what I can eat, but in reality I have increased the foods that I do eat. Every new recipe makes me really excited, and I am always amazed at how delicious everything turns out.

After reading so many blogs about this lifestyle, I want to contribute to the revolution and share what I know!

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