Biggest Myth in Ayurveda: Be Vegetarian | The Ayurvedic View on Meat | Dylan Smith #080

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When ancient wisdom gets popular, confusion and misunderstanding tends to arise within.
The essence and authenticity tends to blur, and this has happened with the knowledge of Ayurveda - the Sacred Science of Healing and Higher Consciousness.
Ayurvedic practitioner and educator Dylan Smith, known for his authenticity and devoted role to keeping the purity of Ayurveda alive and thriving, dispels the 3 Biggest Myths of Ayurvedic medicine.
These MYTHS are:
  1. “You have to be vegetarian” according to Ayurveda - or even that “Vegetarian is the best diet.”
  2. “Onion and garlic are prohibited”.
  3. “Ayurvedic medicines are commonly contaminated with heavy metals.”

In this Episode we Discuss:

Ayurvedic Principles and How They Are Being Taught In Modern Days

Not eating meat is not a part of the Ayurvedic principles.

The Ayurvedic Qualities (Gunas) of Meat

Meat is generally considered to have two gunas: rajas (stimulating, agitating) and tamas (trapped light, inertia). 
Meat is a heavy-to-digest food.

The Ayurvedic Perspective on Meat Eating

Meat being approached as medicine in Ayurveda.

Practical Medicinal Uses of Meat

The Importance of Ethical Sources of Animal Meat

Ways to Replace Meat In Your Diet

It is important when not eating meat to replace complete proteins: this means making sure that you are eating the 9 essential amino acids that make up a protein - now this is not necessarily easy with a plant-based diet, but also not impossible. 
By mixing a legume and a grain (it is important to diversify your grains) you are ingesting the 9 essential amino acids. 
Quinoa, buckwheat & soy contain all 9 essential amino acids. 
  • Soy can affect the hormones (especially estrogen) so it should only be a regular food for those who have been brought up eating soy since childhood & have physiologies that are adapted to digesting these foods. 
There is a lentil in India called the Urad Lentils (Black Gram Lentil) which is often referred to as “meat for vegetarians”. You can either eat that lentil or use Urad flour which is high in protein. 
  • This grain is not to be had every day. 
Mung Dahl is also very good, tridoshic and can be had every day, but has less protein than Urad Lentils. 
Ghee is a very important ingredient that should be present in your diet.

How to Eat Meat Ayurvedically

Your plate should be 50% vegetables, 25% carbohydrates & 25% protein
  • Of that 25% of protein, ideally less than 10% should be meat. 
Have meat only at lunch, never for dinner where your digestive fire is low & your body is undertaking several other processes of repair and assimilation. 
Meat is more of a winter food than summer. 
Add spices to meat; particularly turmeric & then black pepper and ginger are also very good. 
  • These spices are very good to fight back (and kill) the constituents in meat that are not healthy for your body (not to mention the antibiotics & other additives of that nature). 
Cook meat gently, not with extremely high temperatures. 
It is extremely important that you understand the principles of desa, kala & patra and apply them to your own nutrition.

What Meat To Eat?

It is important to diversify. 
Goat meat is the best animal meat you can eat - goats are very fit and they eat a very wide variety of crops and grass. 
  • Find the most ethical goat meat you can. 
 For fish, the smaller the fish, the better - you want to go low on the food chain. 
  • The bigger and older the fish is, the higher mercury contents you will find in its meat. 
  • In general, the fishes to avoid are: bass, lobster, snapper, tuna, grouper, seabass, marlin, shark, swordfish, tilefish (they have the highest levels of mercury). 

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Bees: Crucial Beeings for Health on Earth | Simon Mulvany #031

After listening to this podcast, I am sure you will look at bees differently.

Your awareness of this creature who shares the earth with us will shift.

Bees are Natures Alchemists

Bees take all the most concentrated and refined products of plants and then concentrate and refine them further. Whilst human herbalists work roots, seeds, bark and leaves, Bees work with the bits we are just too clumsy to handle.

This podcast is more for the lame person who are not intimate with bees, rather than well seasoned bee keepers.

About Simon Mulvany

Simon is a solider on the front line protecting the bees, protecting our honey, protecting the Australian and worldwide economy of bee keepers, honey farmers, and protecting our environment! He is very knowledgeable on Melittology or Apicology, scientific study of bees.

Basically, Simon is a hippie who started writing fascinatingly intelligent blog posts about bees, including writing about imported and adulterated honey in Australia, which attracted a lawsuit against one of the big honey corporations.

He’s beyond passionate when it comes to bees. ?

In This Episode We Discuss

Bees are the most studied create on earth.

Bees mentioned in The Vedas

Flowers are representation of the cosmic energy of the sun.

Light workers of the sun.

They take that pollen into their dark hive and alchemise sun-golden amrit (nectar).

Bees are the collective consciousness of the flowers and further than that, the sun.

The buzzing sound of bees came from a goddess who resides in the heart chakra and emitted this buzzing, humming noise, imitated in Vedic chants, representing the primordial sound of the universe

"When the honey-lash comes bestowing gifts, there life's breath, and there immortality has settled down…Luster shall be sustained… O Asvins, lords of Brightness, anoint me with the honey of the bee, that I may speak forceful speech among men."
Honey whip of the Aswini twins in Arthava Veda

Vegan Policies and Honey & Bee Products

Interacting, cultivating and consuming bee products in a respectful and sustainable way can be more sustainable for the earth than avoiding honey. Rather than letting the bees go on suicide mission to pollinate broad acre mono-culture farms like almond farms.

Bee Venom Therapy

One of the first form of acupuncture.

Immune boosting, anti-inflammatory, nerve tissue balancing and more.

See the full benefits of Bee Venom Therapy here

Bees as a foundational important element in a healthy ecology

  • Our ecosystem will collapse without them.
  • At least 1/3 of all food is pollinated by bees!
  • At least 90 commercially grown crops depend upon bee pollination for survival.
  • Without bees, there would be no almonds, apples, blueberries, cherries, avocados, cucumbers, onions, grapefruit, oranges and pumpkins would also disappear.
  • 1 Bee would produce 3000 almonds.
  • Bees are the undisputed champions of the pollination world. And their secret weapon? Sight.

The importance of Pollination

Water damaged building exposure is the key that turns normal sinus fungus into bad guy fungus.

This is how mould can be spread from partner to partner.

Native Indigenous Bee Species

  • Australia has over 1650 species of native bees.
  • They are essential pollinators. But they are driven away from this job mainly due to pesticides and insecticides.
  • They don’t live in hives, they live underground or in holes in trees.
  • To attract threatened indigenous bees, plant indigenous plants.
  • We cannot get much honey from the native bees.

The spiritual insight of observing bees

  • Live together in colonies.
  • No hierarchy.
  • If bees are dying or collapsing, it is giving us an indicator that us a species are doing something that opposes evolution.

Bee Hives are a Super Organism

They all have a very cohesive role.

Swarming

  • One of the most beautiful things Simon has seen.
  • How 90,000 mind work together in harmony.
  • It is their nature to swarm of honey bees. It is how the super organism reproduces.
  • Some people try to stop it because they invade other people property. Fair enough. But create empty boxes for the swarm to colonise or keep on building on their current hive.
  • The virgin queen mates with up to 80-100 drones (the male) mate during a swarm. Every drone that mates with the queen, dies. Sexual suicide.

Queen Bee

  • In most cases, the mother of ALL the bees in the hive. Can be 30,000-60,000 children! all who are siblings.
  • She lays 2000 eggs/day, that’s more than 1 per minute! And mostly all those eggs hatch.
  • Perhaps more appropriately called Mother Bee since she has no power of the colon.

Rudolf Steiner predicated a massive crisis of bees loosing their identity (ego) due to artificial insemination of queens.

He predicted a colony collapse disorder.

Big crisis in 70 years (1990).

Imagine not evolving past a teenager. People would forget how to be an adult.

Cuddle Death / Murder Ball

Killing the Queen bee when it is her time do step down from the throne. They kill her via friction and heat.

They do this same mechanism to wasps and the colonies.

Non-violent queen rearing; (raising queen bees)

  • Grafting Queen large - The process of transferring larva (after an egg hatches) from the worker cell of the breeder's hive to an artificial queen cell. The shape of the cell, along with the queenless condition of the hive receiving the newly grafted cells stimulates the workers to feed them a diet which make them develop into queens.
  • Wing clipping
    • 1. it will keep the colony from swarming. - The idea behind swarm prevention is that once the queen’s wings are clipped, she won’t be able to fly. When the swarm realises the queen isn’t with them, it returns to the hive. In the short term, this can buy you some time. But the colony retains the impulse to swarm even if the queen can’t come along. Eventually, the swarm will leave anyway, perhaps with a virgin queen.
    • The importance of swarming.
    • 2. It can indicate the year the queen was produced.
    • 3 It can be used to mark a particularly valuable queen.
    • Importance of wings: Bee wings contain rigid veins that strengthen the wing and carry hemolymph from the body cavity, through the wing, and back again. Some of the veins also have nerves running through them
  • and high rotation of queens (6-12 months commercially)

Sting vs. Non Sting

  • What determines a bee stinging someone or leaving them.
  • How bees anthropologically acquired stingers.
  • If you are slow and calm, you won’t get stung.
  • When someone is anxious and moving a lot, that will trigger the bees to sting you.
  • Smoke triggers the bees to move into the hive and say think there is a threat of fire, so will not sting as much.

Simons Solution:

Rather than one bee keeper with 200,000 hives or a big corporations having 200,000 hives, we need 200,000 bee keeps spread across … with honour and respect.

Why Urban Bee Keeping is thriving and bees aren’t getting diseases in urban areas.

How you can start bee keeping

  • Go on the Honey Map and see if you can get a swarm.
  • Find a mentor.
  • Attend a workshop.

Bee keeping Tip: Don’t stand infant of the bee hive when inspecting it and stopping the traffic. Give yourself some room from behind.

Flow Hive

  • Getting the honey out and not interfering with the hive. This is a benefit. Less stings may occur.
  • You crack it, and the honey comes out.
  • You still have to know how to inspect the hives and look after them.
  • You still have to find a mentor or do a bee keeping course.
  • They have sold over 50,000 flow hives.

Learn more about The Flow Hive

Tips to Support Bees, thus the environment, thus ourselves!

  • Plant more flowers.
  • Don’t use glyphosate.
  • Most seeds on the market have been dipped in insecticide. That is enough to kill thousands of bees. We recommend Diggers organic seeds.
  • Don’t pick the weeds as much.
  • Keep water out for bees - like a bird bath, but add rocks and sticks so they don’t drown.

Biggest Threats to Bees, thus our environment, thus ourselves!

  • Pesticides and insecticides
  • Monoculture farming
  • Fracking and distribution to the water table.
  • Non-Native Electro Magnetic Fields (nnEMF)
  • Mosquito spraying communities.

nnEMF Supports The Prevalence of Ticks (Parasites that Cause Lyme Disease) by Killing Bees and Insects.

  • The disappearance of bees and precious insects (especially pollinated ones) are due to herbicides and pesticides BUT ALSO, perhaps more alarmingly - non-native electro-magnetic frequencies (nnEMF).
  • Ticks are now taking over because they are very insensitive to frequencies of cell-phone radiation.
  • Insects are not. That is why you’ll find a circle of dead insects on the floor next to a satellite or 5G smart meter.
  • What controlled the tik population in the past is the birds. Birds eat ticks. But they can’t live on ticks alone, they need insects in their diet also.
  • So now, birds have dramatically reduced because they have no insects to eat.
  • Thus, ticks proliferate, and are providing the beginning stages of lyme disease epidemics.
  • German footage showed trees and whole forest dying just because the cell phone tower was put up. Many people are documenting dying plants and trees which are next to the smart meter or 5G tower. nnEMF clearly destroys life - plant life, insect life, human microbiology.

Glyphosate: A potent antibiotic.

Bees and Vision

  • The remarkable eyesight of bees has long been a source of fascination in the scientific community.
  • Even though humans can see more colours, bees have a much broader range of colour vision.
  • Their ability to see ultraviolet light gives them an advantage when seeking nectar.
  • Many patterns on flowers are invisible to humans. These nectar “bulls-eyes” are visible only to animals, such as bees, that have the ability to see ultra-violet light.
  • This “bee vision” makes finding nectar much easier.
  • Their colour vision is the fastest in the animal world-five times faster than humans.
  • They can distinguish each flower precisely. Tell the difference between them. And while flying at high speed.

Royal Jelly

  • Royal Jelly is made by nurse bees by metabolising pollen and honey.
  • Special glands in the heads of worker bees secrete the phlegm stuff, which gets fed to babies.
  • Bee milk - which looks like white snot. - More than half water, then proteins and sugars.
  • A developing queen bee is fed royal jelly exclusively—not pollen and honey like her proletarian sisters.
  • Original school of thought - what elevated a regular honey bee larva to a queen.
  • New Science - says it actually the substance of NOT feeding an immature queen pollen and honey is what makes her royal - Wenfu Mao, Mary A. Schuler, and May R. Berenbaum. 2015. A dietary phytochemical alters caste-associated gene expression in honey bees. Science Advances 1(7).
  • In humans it has been studied for its truly remarkable regenerative powers which appear to work on a wide range of endocrine glands.
  • Acetylcholine - nootropic (smart drug / cognitive enhancer).
  • Contains fatty aides that promote BDNF and promos neurogenesis.
  • Royal Jelly is hard to extract.

Propolis

  • In Greek, “Propolis” means “Protect the city.”
  • The most hygienic place in the world is the bee hive.
  • Propolis or bee glue is a resinous mixture that honey bees produce by mixing saliva and beeswax with exudate gathered from tree buds, sap flows, or other botanical sources.
  • Propolis is the blood of plants collected in the form of a range of tree resins.
  • It is the hive’s main defence against bacteria, viruses and moulds.
  • Bees clean their feet before entering the hive.
  • There are “security guards” are at the entrance of the hives to make sure everyone is clean.
  • It is particularly indicated in damp phlegmatic conditions of the mucus membranes.
  • Fantastic immune booster.
  • Great antibiotics - the development of resistance of the bacteria is practically impossible.
  • Good for topical applications for inflammatory conditions.
  • Ensure you are getting from a quality source since propolis can contain the toxins that the bees are keeping out!
  • Native Beeings - Australian Native Propolis which you can buy.
  • How to harvest propolis. Similar to a queen excluder

Propolis by Native Beeings

Australian Native Bees collect propolis ingredients from a diverse range of plants and provides a powerful and more complex spectrum of medicinal properties which results in the high bio-activity level of our Native Beeings propolis.

Discount code: VITALVEDA

Purchase Here

Manuka Honey

  • The legal battle between New Zealand and Australia regarding who owns the right the Manuka honey.
  • Australia honey is higher quality than NZ as NZ add a insecticide to the hives.

Organic Honey

Organic Smorganic.

Like the Macro brand in Australia.

Heated Honey Is Poison

Any temperature above 37 degrees Celsius applied to honey renders is poison.

A study showed that when honey is heated, it produces a chemical called hydroxymethylfurfuraldehyde (HMF), a substance linked in certain forms to toxicity and possible links to carcinogenic effects. Heating honey also alters its chemical contents in other ways (e.g. increases the peroxides, etc.). Peroxides are known for their unhealthy effect.

Learn more in the article: Honey - Nectar or Poison

Honey

America produces 160 million pounds of honey a year but eat 450 million pounds. The US Imports twice as much as it makes.

American packers blend honey with other honeys from the countries.

Somehow there is a surplus of honey. Where does that honey come from?

The production is erasing but consumption is increasing.

Honey is the supreme essence of the plants and the life sap of the sun.

Adulteration of Honey

  • Diluting honey with cheap syrups.
  • Syrups from corn or sugarcane started 25 years ago. USA.
  • The Chinese discovered syrups measured by rice is not detectable by detecting methods.
  • In 2007 the US Government declared “Chinas producers were unfairly jumping honey on the US market.”
  • So they put a huge tariff on Chinese honey. Tripled the price if it came from China.
  • But then, China shipped to Malaysia, and they shipped to USA.
  • Chinese were selling for half the price that Americans could produce it.
  • In 2008, the US did something about it.
  • The largest food fraud case in the US history. When the German company imported Russian honey that was tested as Chinese honey. Alfred F Wolf, hamburg based.
  • Purchase Order 995. “Polish Light Amber Honey.”
  • A PO for polish honey.
  • Lab tests identified this honey was adulterated with a prohibited anti-biotic, Chloramphenicol. Fed to bees to keep them healthy. Can be fatal for people who eat it. That is why it is illegal in the US to import food products that contain it.
  • 82 - 95% of the honey he was retaking into the US was part of a scheme.
  • Honey testing lab in Germany. Germany is the second biggest consumer after USA.

Capilano/Allowrie (Honey Brand that Adulterates) and their lawsuit with Simon

  • Now known as Hive & Wellness
  • Sold a lot to China.
  • Australian honey blended with Chinese and other foreign honey at a discount price - often to unwary Australian consumers.
  • They were suing Simon because he exposed their business practice.
  • Simon acquired test results from one of the world’s most accomplished laboratories confirming cheap imported supermarket honey, including Allowrie honey, is adulterated.
  • As a consequence the ACCC have notified Simon and advise they have re-opened their investigation into how Australian supermarkets can still continue to sell fake honey.
  • This could have become one of the biggest defamation cases in Australia’s legal history and has the potential to create legal precedent that further protects our right to free speech.
  • How we can help - email them.

Bee Pollen

  • a pellet of field-gathered flower pollen packed by worker honeybees.
  • Pollen plant sperm, or if you prefer - the reproductive essence of plants.
  • Used as the primary food source for the hive.
  • It is a true super food and unlike many is perfect for people with weak digestion.
  • With 27 trace elements and a host of vitamins including A,D, E, B1, B2, B3, B6 and Folic Acid.
  • It is strengthening and warming.
  • Good aphrodisiac and to increase the lust for life.
  • Sustainable - If we take only what is excess.
  • Adulteration - all pollen overseas has to be radiated.
  • Amber drop honey - pollen from NSW.
  • B1 third - pollen from Australia.

Amber Drop Honey, Bee Pollen from Western Australia

How to Take It
Start with a pinch of granules to ensure no adverse reaction and in crease by a ¼ of a teaspoon until you reach the recommended serving size of between 5g-10g per day.

• Sprinkle over your morning muesli
• Add it into smoothies or juices
• Include it in your protein balls
• Sprinkle over fresh cut fruit and yoghurt
• Enjoy straight

Beemunity

product by LifeCykel - a supplement for bees. Animal immunity extracts.

The Beemunity™ extract is a mix of native Australian mushrooms and native Australian bush foods from Arnhem land.

The extracts are to promote pollination and rejuvenation of thousands of acres of lost forestry and vegetation.

By increasing the bees immune systems so that the bees live longer meaning a healthier more resilient hive.


Conclusion

Take Action

Make a conscious effort to not use toxic chemicals like roundup

Buy organic where possible

With the drought and fires leave water out with a stick or rock in it so the bees don’t drown, plant a sunflower garden, appreciate the bee as there are not many left, write a petition to your local and state government to ban pesticides.


Resources


Support The Show

Please leave me a comment below (I love to read every single one).


SHARE

Spread the word! Tell your family, friends, neighbors and all your social mates.

Share this episode on Facebook / Share this episode on Twitter


Please seek advice from a qualified practitioner before starting any new health practice.


Cooked vs. Raw Food Diet: Transcend Food Fads | Dylan Smith #025

Transcend food fads and diets and adhere to the ultimate diet: Natures Diet.

The Dubious Flexibility of Scientific Literature

When engaging in discussions and dispelling myths of particular health trends, I truely intend to create a balanced argument on both sides. I like to present the pros and cons of both sides, the science and the ancient wisdom, then allow the reader to make an informed decision themselves that applies to their unique self.

According to the science, raw food and cooked food, are both beneficial and our ancestors enjoyed both.

Due to the dubious nature of scientific studies, a more holistic insight is required. Thus, it is wise to consider the traditional sciences that have time tested these topics for thousands of years, as in the case of Ayurveda.

Anthropology: What Did Our Ancestors Eat?

The logic that our ancestors only ate raw foods is flawed, with numerous studies suggesting we have been cooking for almost 2 million years.

Cooking with fire predates homosapians. If you trace your way back, you find the species prior, which were still in our genus, they were homo (human), "homo erectus" to name the precise genus, had fire and passed the torch onto homosapians. This was all found through fossil analysis.

What was the benefits of cooking with fire? The study says:

“Reduced digestive effort…and increased supply of food energy.”
Cooking and the Ecology of Human Origins.

In Ayurveda, the discussion isn’t so narrow as to one is bad and one is good.

Many things are taken into account, including The Eight Factors Determining the Utility of Food:

  1. Prakriti - nature of food articles.
  2. Karana - method of processing.
  3. Samyoga - combination of food articles.
  4. Rasi - quantity.
  5. Desa - habitat of the food and where it is being eaten.
  6. Kala - Time - day or night, age of the person and stage of the disease in the individual.
  7. Upayogasamsthā - rules governing the intake of food. One should no speak, laugh, take in hurry, very slow, etc.
  8. Upayoktrn - wholesomeness of the individual who takes it. This includes "OkaSatmya" - What the individuals ancestors ate, what they were brought up eating, and what they are habituated to eat.

The Importance of Agni (Transformation)

As you see above, Processing (Karana) is one of the Eight Factors Determining the Utility of Food.

Processing or cooking foods is vital. It transforms the food. Usually for the good. Cooking in most cases can remove samskaras ("memories") of the food item and transform the qualities of it.

Example: transforming milk with fire

Take milk from stress-induced, unhappy factory farmed cows for example. When you boil the milk diluted with water, to some extent, the stress chemistry of the cows are removed from the milk.

Take it to the next level by adding some black pepper to further transform the milk as these little pungent black fiery spice balls counter the heavy, damp, mucous creating quality of milk.

There are many ways to process or cook food (detailed below). It is vital to purify the substance, enhance its absorbability for humans and nutritional effect.

“Raw foodists, it is clear, do not fare well. They thrive only in rich modern environments where they depend on eating exceptionally high quality foods.... the implication is clear. We are not like other animals. In most circumstances, we need cooked food.”
~ Harvard Professor Richard Wrangham, “Catching Fire: How Cooking Made Us Human.”

On the other hand...

Common cooking methods can be used to enhance the nutritional value of vegetables, increasing bio-accessibility of health-promoting constituents.

Cooking has the effect of softening the indigestible cellulose, allowing nutrients to be rereleased that may not be when eaten raw.

Cooked foods is not just about nutrients, they are nurturing for your intestinal wall!

Foods that Have A Higher Nutrient Value When Cooked

Artichokes

Cooking artichokes increase their antioxidant levels (steaming is best).

Studies observed the cooking effect on the artichoke antioxidant profile is probably due to matrix softening and increased extractability of compounds.

Asparagus

Cooked asparagus has more antioxidants than raw. 

This study assessed "significant and more pronounced" changes during cooking process.

Blueberries

Studies show cooked blueberries can have greater antioxidant levels than fresh.

Baking blueberries changes their polyphenol content.

Note that fruit doesn't need to be cooked since the sun cooks it!

Carrots

Cooked carrots are more nutritious than raw. Steaming or baking whole carrots preserves more of the beta-carotene, studies showed.

The human body converts beta carotene into vitamin A (retinol) - beta carotene is a precursor of vitamin A. We need vitamin A for healthy skin and mucus membranes, our immune system, and good eye health and vision.

Broccoli, Cauliflower, Cabbage

Some studies suggest raw because the heat breaks down the enzyme called tyrosinase, which is a precursor for broccoli to release cancer-fights and ulcer reducing sulforaphanes (which is what elevated broccoli to its superfood status).

Over all, you can’t digest those enzymes.

On the other hand, a perhaps even more health-prompting nutrient, Indole-3-carbinol, is processed only when broccoli, cauliflower and cabbage are cooked.

Indole-3-carbinol has been shown to stop pre-cancerous prostate cells from becoming malignant by inhibiting cell growth and supports apoptosis.

Spinach

Raw spinach - chew it and it tastes chalky because it contains oxalic acid - an organic substance that can interfere with the absorption of essential nutrients like calcium and iron.

A study showed it also attaches to quite a few other vital nutrients, and long-term consumption of foods high in oxalic acid can lead to nutrient deficiencies.

Cooking spinach breaks down oxalic acid.

Tomatoes

Studies showed cooked tomatoes have higher lycopene, a potent antioxidant more powerful then vitamin C, and is particularly useful in helping the body repair damaged tissue, and preventing cancer and heart attacks.

Other studies show vitamin C decreased when being cooked. 

Reported Benefit of Raw Food: Cleansing

Yes it is true, raw roods can be cleansing since they have more fibre.

This is why people get good bowel motions - it is going straight out.
They think this is a good thing, but actually, they are not absorbing nourishment.

This can be of benefit for when the body is sick and toxic, like in the case of cancer - as the fibre can scrub the intestines.

But once you are cleansed, raw food is not sustainable.

In the beginning, when lots of raw vegetables or "green juices" are eaten, the system starts to digest the ama (toxins and blockages) because you are not getting enough nourishment, so it is like fasting. Catabolic activity happens. The problems start when the ama is finished and then the body starts to eat the dhatus (healthy  tissues).

Raw Food Will Cause Weight Loss, But You're Losing Healthy Tissues!

Definitely people will loose weight on a raw diet. Due to catabolic action where tissues are broken down, including fat tissue. However, it also depletes other tissues, like bone, bone marrow, and reproductive tissue.

In ‘Catching Fire’, Professor Richard Wrangham wrote:
“Recent studies indicate that low bone mass in the backs and hips of raw foodists was caused by their raw diet.”

There are healthier ways to loose weight: Balance agni and activate healthy tissue metabolism.

Not only will the healthy tissues become depleted, but the digestive fire becomes compromised. And it takes a lot of attentiveness from someone recovering from raw food diet damage.

Overall with cancer, the more vegetables you eat, the better. Plant based diet is key.

In the condition of inflammatory bowels, the very first recommendation is stop eating raw food. While they are cleansing, they are very rough on the intestinal wall. Cleansing is not a suitable diet in this case of sensitive gut.

Reported Benefit of Raw Food: More Energy

Again, this is true but also false. 

Raw food takes about 80% more energy to digest than cooked food. Plus it also provides the body with less energy following digestion. 

So how is it that raw food makes you feel more energetic?
Because it certainly does, in the short term at least. 

You get a short term hit of energy due to the catabolic effect. But then, (few months to a few years later) you are left depleted.

This is why the raw food diet doesn't last to long with people.

Vata Aggravating & Catabolic Effect

Raw food has the qualities of Dry, Light, Cold and Rough.
The vata dosha (bioenergy responsible for movement) also has those qualities.
Thus, according to the natural law of “like increases like,” eating raw foods increase the vata dosha.

Vata is responsible for catabolism - cell reduction.

The Raw Food Diet Has Never Been Time Tested

When a cell breaks down, it is like a star exploding – it releases a lot of energy!

So, if you’ve ever been on a raw food, smoothie or juice diet, for a short period of time you may very well have felt on top of the world!

But this feeling won’t last forever and neither should your raw food diet.

Excess catabolism occurs, where healthy tissues become depleted. Then the Ojas (immunity, vitality, essence of your tissues), also gets reduced.

This is why many of the people I see who have tried raw diets feel great in the short term, and get inflicted with fatigue down the track. You may have experienced this.

People do not stay on the raw vegan diet for long.

Even 10 years is very rare for someone to be on a raw food diet, but those who have been, even that isn’t a long period of time!

Never as a human species have we done this.

Historically the diets of humans last centuries, not 10 years! And they never dipped in and out of fads. They maintained the same diet for generations.

They adhered to the ultimate diet. Natures diet.

Reported Benefit: Reduced Risk of Disease

Not a precise point to argument since people on raw food diets tend to stop eating processed food or a regular western ‘convenience/fast food’ diet.

This processed and unnatural diet is well recognised as the main cause of some of the most common chronic diseases in Western society.

They also eat more fruits and veggies and less meat.

They also tend to be people who care about their health, so tend to make other life-style changes - like sleeping better, meditation, exercise, healthy relationships, less alcohol and smoking etc. - that turn out to benefit their health.

The Wisdom of Ayurveda

As I mentioned at the beginning of this article, I really do try to make the argument balanced. But I just couldn't do that for raw foods.

The reality is, when you acknowledge the time-tested, rich science of Ayurveda, raw food only has a small place in the human diet.

For those who want optimal health and to cure and prevent disease, should primarily cook their food.

The famous Ayurvedic sage, Caraka Samhita, has 10 rules for eating raw food. They are in order of importance, and yep you guessed it, cooking food is included. In fact, it is number one most important for food to be wholesome.

10 Rules For Taking Food:

  1. Food Should be Warm/Cooked:

Reasoning for this from thousands of years ago:

  • It is delicious.
  • After intake it provokes the factors (enzymes) in the abdomen and helps digestion;
  • It gets digested quickly;
  • Helps digestion, fluids and nutrients move downwards (vata anulomana);
  • Maintains detachment of sticky, undigestible, toxic substances (kapha).

And the other 9 rules for food intake:

2. Food Should be Unctuousness (Snigdha)
3. Food taken in Proper Quantity.
4. Intake After Digestion of Previous Meal.
5. Intake of Food Having No Contradictory Potencies (Incompatible food combinations)
6. Intake in Proper Place (Calm environment) and With All Accessories.
7. Intake, Not in Hurry.
8. Intake, Not Too Slow.
9. Intake with Concentration, Self-Confidence and with due regard to his own self.

Reference: Caraka Samhita, Vimana Sthana.

The Eight Factors Determining the Utility of Food

Let's look at more ancient wisdom.

We saw the eight qualities earlier on in this article, lets go more into the second factor, and view the ancient ways of processing substances (that are still practiced today):

Karana - Processing the Substances:

  • Karana (processing) results in the transformation.
  • Transformation of the attributes is effected by:
  • Dilution
  • Application of heat,
  • Cleansing,
  • Churning - e.g. Curd by nature aggravates oedema; when churned, even with the fat content of it remaining intact, it alleviates oedema.
  • Storing,
  • Maturing,
  • Flavouring - e.g. sweet smelling drugs like utpala (Nymphae alba/White water lily) in water. 
  • Impregnating - drugs like amalaki in juices.
  • Preservation - Ingredients of Duralabhasava are required to be kept in a jar smeared with ghee for 15 days before use (Chikitsa 15:154).
  • Container - e.g. TriphalaRasayana is to be prepared in a new iron container smeared with the paste of amalaki (Chikitsa 1:3:43)(22-II)

Vegetables That Can Be Eaten Raw (Plants in Salad Form)

There is some balance in Ayurveda after all!

Ayurveda does mention certain vegetables that can be eaten raw. However, if these vegetables are cooked, that is ideal and easier to digest.

Ardraka (Green Ginger)

Tender Radish

  • When taste is not well manifested and tender, it  alleviates vitiated dosas, is light (laghu) and stimulates digestion.
  • When overgrown, it provokes these dosas.

Tulsi (Ocimum sanctum)

Leafy greens - Ajwain, Arjaka (Ocimum gratissimum / Clove Basil / African Basil), Sigru (Moringa oleifera), Saleya (Tringonella foenum-graceum / Fenugreek) , Mrstaka (Brassica nigra / Black Mustard) - Leaves of these vegetables are cordial and palatable.

Bhustrna (Cymbopogon citratus / Lemon Grass).

Dhanyaka (Coriandrum sativum / Coriander)

Palandu (Allium cepa / Onion)

Lasuna (Allium sativum / Garlic) - Can provide its fantastic health benefits when raw.

Source: Caraka Samhita, Vimana Sthana.

Other vegetables okay to eat raw:

  • Beetroot
  • Carrot
  • Cucumber
  • Celery
  • Mint
  • and vegetables with strong pitta characteristics can be eaten raw in limited quantity. Grated is best and at lunch or as snack if agni (digestive fire) is good.

What About Fruit?

Fruit is cooked by nature, by the sun. So when it ripens that is cooked.

What About Nuts?

Nuts you can take raw, but better to cook them - either soaking them, peeling some nuts like almonds, or activating.

Some Tips on Cooking

  • Don’t damage foods with high heat and over-cooking. Lightly steaming, lightly cooking is fine and will enhance health of the intestinal skin. 
  • Unless it is soups or stews - they capture the nutrients.
  • Blanch salads and leafy greens.
  • Use pure Clay Pots since they retain the nutrients profoundly.
  • Retain the water.
  • Use some quality oil always when cooking.
  • Eating a little raw food is completely fine. Your diet should be predominately cooked food.

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References

  • "Caraka Samhita," Vimana Sthana.
  • "Catching Fire: How Cooking Made Us Human", Richard Wrangham.
  • "Are Raw Food Diets Healthy?," Nadia Marshall.