Seeing as 7 of my tips are currently in print (see OK! magazine posting 2 entries down), those of you into raw foods or about to be may be interested to see my original submission, and the whole "Top 10 Tips" in their totality. Hope you enjoy them : )
1: Only bring more raw foods in to your diet if you are ready for change. Eating more raw food is going to give your more energy and make you think more clearly, so you have to have plenty of ideas for what to do with that!
2: Start gradually by replacing your usual cooked breakfast with any of the following: unlimited fresh fruit; fresh fruit smoothie; freshly squeezed fruit or vegetable juice; fresh almond milk (blend 3 parts water with 1 part almonds then strain); rehydrated prunes, apricots and figs topped with fresh almond milk.
3: Buy a book on the subject that will give you a good overview of the subject as well as recipe ideas and what you can expect. Recommended reading: Feel-Good Food by Susie Miller and Karen Knowler and Eat Smart Eat Raw by Kate Wood (both available from The Fresh Network).
4: Begin browsing new aisles of the supermarket or visit a good health food shop. Really take a look at what’s there and be prepared to step into another more healthy and exciting world! Buy at least 3 new ingredients while you’re there – two fresh food items such as large ripe mango and a beautiful organic Batavia lettuce, and one for your store cupboard such as a packet of hemp seeds or a bottle of flaxseed oil.
5: Aim to get as many fresh raw ingredients into your lunch and evening meal as possible. You can do this easily by replacing cooked vegetables with a large juicy salad and/or sprinkling raw nuts or seeds onto your food. Use virgin olive oil and lemon juice to dress your salad, or blend 2 tablespoons of tahini with a fresh tomato for richer, creamier dressing.
6: Work up to the point where three-quarters of your plate consists of raw ingredients, with your cooked portion being the remaining quarter and of the highest quality (no additives, ideally organic, and steamed, boiled or grilled rather than roasted, fried or microwaved). By this stage you should be feeling remarkably different and will be seriously impressed with yourself!
7: Focus next on your drinks. These are just as important as your food, if not more so, because drinks can be detrimental to health and undermine all your good work. Avoid caffeine, alcohol and any fizzy drinks (sparkling water is the healthier alternative) and increase the amount of pure water you drink. Fresh juices and smoothies are also excellent. If you fancy something hot, switch to herbal teas or experiment with other healthier alternatives such as Barley Cup.
8: When you get to this stage, give yourself a real treat! Visit the Little Earth Café at Triyoga, Primrose Hill for the best pre-prepared raw food in the UK, or attend a Fresh Network event to learn more about how to make your own raw food meals and take your knowledge to another level.
9: When you feel ready for the next step, make one of your main meals entirely raw. Replace bread with sprouted wheat bread or flax crackers. Replace meat with a protein-rich sprouted seed pate. Replace cheese with a nut “cheese”. Add olives, avocado, nuts, seeds, sprouted beans and seeds, or raw vegetables marinated in olive oil and lemon juice to your main meal salad and experiment with delicious dips and dressings.
10: And finally, if you want to know how a whole day on raw food feels, make sure it’s a day when you have time to really enjoy your food and time to kick-back throughout the day to realise how good you feel. By this point you may very well have lost some weight, will have clearer skin, sparkling eyes, noticeably more energy, less puffiness and bloating and be thinking much more clearly. After this, it’s up to you!