The Raw Deal
4. Plan to succeed
The higher your intake of raw foods, the more you need to keep an eye on the big picture. “Plan your meals so you’re not falling back on apples and salads,” Pavelka notes. “If you’re just grabbing whatever is easiest, you can end up missing certain sources of nutrition altogether.” In particular, make sure you’re getting enough protein—from nuts and legumes—and iron. Eat plenty of spinach, kale and almonds—or consider taking a good multivitamin with iron.
5. Go organic
According to Amsden, the more raw food you eat, the more important it becomes to go organic. Organic food minimizes your exposure to toxins and maximizes nutrition, he says. Do some sleuthing at your local grocery store—you might have to change your shopping patterns a bit, but the payoff is huge. “It’s just easier to live life when you’re eating the very best food that you can,” he says. “The commitment to organic propels itself.”
6. Enjoy yourself
Raw food, like any food, should make you feel sustained and satisfied—or why eat it? That’s the thinking of Mollie Moran, a vegetarian chef who has cooked for rock musicians for the past 12 years, most recently the Dave Matthews Band. Knoxville, Tenn.- based Moran says her aim has always been quality and taste; the fact that the foods are mostly raw is secondary. “Nutrients still have to be delicious, and beautiful food like this is nourishing on a lot of levels,” she says. “Celebration, not deprivation, is what eating is all about.”