I read Jason Vale’s “The Juice Master’s Ultimate Fast Food” book in about 2 hours straight on Saturday, I also watched a great documentary called “Fat, sick and Nearly dead” about a guy called Joe Cross who did a 90 day juice fast whilst travelling across America to cure his various health problems. I haven’t juiced in ages so it inspired me to get back into it, it’s one of those things that feels like a bit of a novelty at the time and once it becomes a hassle it’s very easy to put the juicer out of sight and let time pass by.
After reading Jason’s book I feel I have a better understanding of WHY so many people encourage you to drink vegetable juice, not just as a supplement or a health fad but also as a digestion aid, a necessary boost and to help counteract years of eating processed foods. He talks about fruits and vegetables as being “Living foods” that are there to help flush out all of the “dead foods” and also the importance of the antioxidants which help fight disease and cancer.
What really helped me this time though was that he appreciated how the flow of a busy every day life means restricting yourself to 100% juice or even raw vegetables means we are unlikely to stick to such a strict diet. Instead he suggests that having a juice first thing in the morning is important to help your body finish off all the repair work it has been doing over night, then try and have a juice later in the day before a meal to help digestion and to get the food moving through your body quickly. Then along with your cooked food just be sure to try and incorporate something raw (or atleast green) with every meal.
I eat alot of vegetables with every meal including plenty of watercress, tomatoes, avocado and mushrooms at breakfast but I decided to just become more conscious of including something raw later in the day too. With this in mind I am digging out the juicer and seeing if I can make it a more permenant daily routine even if it is just for breakfast.
If you feel like you’d like to try eating more raw foods but you don’t quite know how then here are some great ways to incorporate Raw fruits and Vegetables into your meal times. Just remember that it only needs to be a small easy change to make it a permenant fixture into your life. I stopped cooking most of my breakfast items which at first was weird but now I wouldn’t dream of having anything other than a big juicy raw tomato with some salad leaves with my eggs
- Add fresh fruits such as blueberries, strawberries, chopped apricots, banana or apples to your cereals/ porridge.
- Overnight oats is a brilliant way of keeping fruits raw in your breakfast, my recipe includes fresh figs!
- Freshen up a cooked breakfast by leaving the tomatoes raw sprinkled with some fresh basil and olive oil and serve it with some raw spinach or watercress
- Top your toast with fresh fruits as well as your favourite Jam/ Peanut butter etc.
- Have a raw green juice or smoothie along side your breakfast (Click here for my beginners guide to juicing)
- Salads are an easy lunch packed full of raw vegetables, include fruits like mango, pomegranate seeds and pears for more interesting flavours. Don’t be tempted to add too many cooked or processed ingredients to your salad, use the natural flavours of raw foods to make it exciting!
- Top soups with chunks of avocados, sprouted seeds, handfuls of chopped raw spinach and herbs
- Cram sandwich wraps with salad items including julienned carrots, peppers, lettuce, tomatoes and cress!
- Serve a main cooked meal with plenty of side salad, if out for lunch then order a side salad just to get that extra portion of raw veggies in but ask for the dressing on the side!
- Have a starter of a raw green juice or a raw soup like gazpacho before having your main meal.
- Try making raw vegetable pasta and noodles using a spiruliser or simply add some grated raw veg onto a pasta or rice dish, things like carrot and courgette work nicely!
- Wrap burgers or sausages in a lettuce or collard leaf instead of bread!
- Add fresh herbs to a dish once served and not during cooking.
- Make a raw sauce using avocados as a base and stir into pasta or serve on some cooked potatoes (I recommend this raw pesto recipe)
I hope you find some of these easy tips helpful If you have any more suggestions then please do leave a comment!