Eating a vegan, plant-based and planet-friendly diet is important for our health, but I take it a step further by consuming mostly raw foods because I feel more energy and pizzazz when I’m eating high raw (that means that my diet is about 75%+ raw). Some people think eating raw takes more work, but I’m here to tell you, it doesn’t have to. Quite the opposite! If you have a busy lifestyle and you’d like to eat more high-energy raw foods, follow the three tips I share below to get started.
1. Fresh fruit & veggies are perfect simplicity! I know, this seems obvious, right? But, guess what? It works! This is one of my favorite tips because it’s truly eco-friendly nutrition, especially if you can buy some of these items from your local farmers’ market. My favorite grab-n-go foods: bananas, apples, pears, cucumbers (I eat it just like I’d eat a carrot stick… just bite in!), and red (orange and yellow) bell peppers (I eat these just like I eat an apple). You can literally take these items, as is, no need for any extra packaging, because they come with their own.
Pro-tip: Once a week, wash and prep items like carrots, celery, cucumbers, etc. so they’re ready to go when you are. Other items like apples, bananas, cherry tomatoes, and citrus can be on your counter primed for the taking. Doesn’t get any easier than this.
2. Green Smoothies offer maximum energy! These phtyo-nutrient and mineral rich concoctions are a brilliant and easy way to add raw food love to your life. To whip up this goodness, simply use a blender to blend water, ice (if desired), 2 to 3 pieces of ripe fruit (frozen if desired), and a couple handfuls of greens thrown it. Pow! You have an easy meal full of immune enhancing and anti-aging properties. And, when you consume meals in a liquid form like this, it’s easier on your digestion, which helps give you a big boost in energy.
Pro-tip: Make a large batch of green smoothie in the morning and divide it between a couple glass mason jars to enjoy through the day (you can make an even bigger batch and consume it over a couple of days if that’s easier). Store what you’re not drinking at the time in your refrigerator. When you leave for the day, pack a cooler with some ice for your car, put in your green smoothies, and zoom-zoom away you go!
3. Packaged Raw foods make life easy! When I’m on the run and I don’t have time to make my own raw food snacks there are some great alternatives that you can find online or in health food stores. Keep in mind that buying organic products are better for you and the planet, so look for those first. Some of my favorite raw snacks are cheesy kale chips, protein bars, granola packed in a reusable baggie, cookies, and sometimes good ol’ nuts with dried fruit will do the trick. And(!), these foods make terrific snacks for those hungry kids when you’re out running errands. If you don’t have any of these on hand when you’re running out the door, no worries. Just toss some hemp seeds and raisins into a reusable sandwich bag and go.
Pro-tip: Buying packaged raw foods can add up in cost, so I buy items in bulk (by the case or box), to take advantage of discounts (offered by most stores or companies – if it’s not obvious that they offer a discount, then just ask!). Many items freeze well in case it takes you a year to go through something you bought in excess. Or, buy in bulk and split the cost with a family member or neighbor.
As you can see, it can be easy to add more raw foods to your life no matter how hectic your schedule can be. Start with one of the tips above and work it into your life for one month. Then, add another tip the following month. Before you know it, you’ll be a master at having all three of these options in your life and you’ll be feeling great, buzzing around fueled by raw food goodness.