The term Almost Raw Vegan was conceived by yours truly 😉 to illustrate my philosophy and appraoch to eating a whole foods plant based diet. I’ve included below are a number of definitions to help you better understand the various dietary approaches.
Almost Raw Vegan
An “Almost Raw” Vegan diet combines the principles of a whole food plant-based diet with the principles of a raw vegan diet. The ARV diet includes approximately 80% RAW whole food plant-based foods (leafy greens, vegetables, fruits, nuts, seeds, legumes, sprouts, sea vegetables, plant-oils, no wheat and only minimal grains (quinoa, buckwheat, etc.), minimal soy) and 20% cooked plant-based foods. The key is enjoying whole foods and nothing processed.
The premise is, it’s not always practical to follow 100% raw vegan diet although ARVs believe that whole food plant-based diet & raw food diet are the most beneficial for our health – mind, body & soul – so it’s best to include a very high percentage of raw whole plant-based foods (80%-ish) and balance this with cooked (20%-ish) whole plant-based foods.
Finding this 80/20 balance is MUCH easier than you may think. Simply enjoy a green smoothie for breakfast, a BIG green salad for lunch and partner your dinner with a green salad or fresh veggies! Follow this premise and you will meet the 80/20 balance without even thinking about it! 🙂
As the name “Almost” suggests, it’s not about being a strict follower, but instead it’s about being practical and adaptable while still enjoying the health benefits of a 100% whole foods plant-based diet.
NOTE: It’s true many of my recipes may include – for example, wheat – that’s because I want my recipes to work for everyone in your family. My recipes will include options – i.e. Roasted Vegetable Pizza also inlcude a Pizza Salad option so you can enjoy a wheatfree ARV option!
A raw vegan eats raw and dehydrated whole plant-based foods (leafy greens, vegetables, fruits, nuts, seeds, grain and legume sprouts). The definition of “raw” is any food that is heated below 118 degrees (although the exact temperature may vary depending on who you talk to, but it’s always in the same range). The premise is, when foods are heated above 118 degrees they will loose the power of the enzymes.
A plant-based diet will include only whole food (i.e. whole from the plant and not processed) plant based foods that are both raw or cooked, (i.e. leafy greens, vegetables, fruits, nuts, seeds, legumes, grains, sprouts, etc.). The ratio of cooked vs. raw does not matter. Plant-based approach for most does not include any processed foods, but only whole foods.
Most vegans will abstain from using any animal products, both in their diet (i.e. no meats, eggs, cheese, butter, dairy, honey, etc.) and also in any consumer products, for example leather in clothing, goose fat for shoe polish, animal products in cosmetics, etc. They do eat whole foods and plant-based foods, but many do still eat processed vegan foods.
In general vegetarians simply remove meats (red meat, poultry, seafood) from their diet. Most vegetarians will still eat eggs, cheese, butter, dairy and honey. There are however several varieties of vegetarians – as an example, an ovo-vegetarian includes eggs but not diary products, a lacto-vegetarian includes dairy but not eggs, a pescetarian will eat fish but no other meat products. Vegetarians may eat both whole foods and processed foods.