If you want to experiment with a raw-foods approach, experts suggest trying it for a few weeks — ideally during spring or summer — and then evaluating how you feel. These tips will help you stay on friendly terms with your digestion.
- Start with a 1:1 ratio of cooked and raw foods and see how you feel, says functional-medicine provider Will Cole, IFMCP, DNM, DC. He recommends letting your bathroom habits be your guide. If your stools are loose, reduce the amount of raw foods and eat more cooked soups and stews. If constipation crops up, dial up your raw-food intake.
- If you experience bloating and gas, consider adjusting your ratio of vegetables to fruit. “People with underlying gut issues tolerate more fruit better than more vegetables because fruit fiber is gentler,” says Cole.
- Add a splash of apple-cider vinegar or lemon juice to a glass of water and drink with meals, suggests functional nutritionist Jesse Haas, CNS, LN. This helps improve stomach-acid production for stronger digestion.
- If bloating or gas is still a problem, try taking digestive enzymes before meals to help your stomach process the roughage, says Haas. (Learn more at “Digestive Enzymes“.)
- Drink plenty of water to help keep things moving through the digestive tract.
- Add warming spices, such as ginger and turmeric, says Akil Palanisamy, MD. This is an Ayurvedic way to help increase digestive “fire.”
- Keep tabs on your energy, mood, cognition, and stamina, says Haas. “Be open to feedback from your body on whether a raw-foods diet is working for you or not.”
This was excerpted from “The Raw Story” which was published in the April 2022 issue of Experience Life magazine.