The Raw Glow Blog

The Raw Diet and Weight Loss Part 1

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I would venture to say that a large percentage of people initially try a raw food diet for weight loss because they would like to easily and healthfully lose a little weight. There is no need to mention that obesity is an epidemic in today’s society, everyone already knows that. And most people know they should be eating better, but it’s not always easy. Cravings, social situations, and finding the time to prepare healthy meals can be a challenge in today’s world.

The good news is, is that most people can lose weight just by switching to a whole food diet and if a large percentage of their diet is raw fruits and vegetables, even better!  Most people when starting a high raw diet notice that the pounds just start melting away in just a few months. I actually have had a few people ask me how they could gain weight on a raw diet because they had lost too much weight!

But there is a percentage of people who are still struggling with loosing weight even after adopting a high raw diet. I would probably guess that these people have a slower metabolism, and are probably best described in Ayuverdic medicine as a Kapha Dosha body type. Kapha’s tend to have a small appetite yet they gain weight easily.

Whatever the reason or the theory, some of us (including myself), need to be to be a bit more calculating when wanting to loose weight, even on a raw diet.

My First Tip about Raw Diet and Weight Loss:

Tip #1 Be Aware of Calories

If you are seeking to lose weight on a raw food diet I think it is really important that you start to understand the caloric content of the foods you are eating. I know some people might argue that not all calories are created equal and maybe there is a grain of truth to that statement but the bottom line is: if you’re trying to lose weight, calories count.

The first thing you need to figure out is how many calories your body needs to maintain its current weight. There are many calorie calculators online, I used this one.  According to the calorie calculator, I need about 1700 calories per day. So, in theory, if I wanted to lose weight I would need to eat a little less than that per day or to burn some calories off through exercise to eventually lose some weight.

Here is a list of some common foods on a high raw food diet and the amount of calories they contain:

Foods With a Low Caloric Density

1 bunch spinach is about 80 calories

1 head romaine lettuce is about 105 calories

1 cucumber is about 45 calories

Foods With a Moderate Calorie Density

1 medium banana is about 120 calories

1 mango is about 140 calories

1 mejidool date is about 24 calories

Foods With a High Caloric Density

1 cup almonds is about 850 calories

1 cup sunflower seeds is about 820 calories

1 cup macadamia nuts is about 950 calories

1 tablespoon olive oil is about 120 calories

1 teaspoon raw tahini butter is about 85 calories

1 avocado is about 240 calories

Okay, so now lets do some simple math. If you’re making a smoothie in the morning with 4 bananas your smoothie is at least 480 calories. If you are snacking on 5 mejidool dates you are eating 120 calories. If you make a salad with a head of romaine and a chopped cucumber with a raw dressing of 2 tablespoons raw tahini butter to your salad, the salad is about 660 calories because just one tablespoon of tahini butter equals 255 calories A snack consisting of a ¼ cup of macadamia nuts is about 240 calories.  I hope this gives you a better idea of how many calories are in some common raw foods.

You also need to take into account where your calories are coming from. According to the Institute of Medicine these are the recommended ranges for macronutrients:

Carbohydrate: 45 to 65% of total Calories

Fat: 20 to 35% of total Calories

Protein: 10 to 35% of total Calories

For example, I need approximately 1700 calories to maintain my current weight so 20% of 1700 is 340. This means if I want to get 20% of my calories from fat, I can only eat 340 fat calories per day. That means that I wouldn’t want to eat more than 3 tablespoons of olive oil a day (they are pure fat calories) or I wouldn’t want to eat more than a ½ cup of sunflower seeds a day. Make sense?

If you want to lose weight, it is best to maximize the number of lower caloric density foods in your diet and use the higher caloric density foods wisely. So that means eating more fruits and vegetables and using nuts seeds/oils not as a meal per say, but as a tasty way to dress up more vegetables. Rarely do I just snack on nuts by themselves. My preferred way to eat nuts is blended in the blender to make a lovely salad dressing that I pour on top of a huge salad. The salad is more likely to satisfy me, compared to just snacking on a handful of nuts.

Just by being aware of the high fat and high calorie content of oils, nuts, seeds, and nut/seed butters you are so ahead of the game when it comes to loosing weight on a high raw diet!

To find out how many calories are in your favorite foods and to figure out how many calories you are eating per day plus other cool and useful nutritional information you can use my favorite online nutrition database.

Click here for my salad dressing e-book where I show you how you can turn nuts and seeds into fabulous raw food salad dressings!

If you would like to lose weight but need more guidance, consider scheduling a raw food coaching session with Cecilia to reach your weight loss goals. Cecilia will give you the practical tools you need to easily add more raw food to your diet to lose weight, experience more energy, look and feel years younger, and radiate a happy healthy “raw” glow.”

Click Here For The Raw Diet and Weight Loss Part 2 . . .



1 - Raw Food in The News and Around The Web { 07.29.10 at 5:16 pm }

[…] The Raw Diet and Weight Loss Part 1 […]

2 Pure2raw twins { 07.30.10 at 2:16 am }

Great tips!

3 Cecilia { 08.01.10 at 5:42 am }

Thanks for stopping by

4 Justgoraw { 08.05.10 at 12:04 pm }

Thanks Cecilia!

5 Iu23trainer { 08.05.10 at 3:00 pm }

Hi Cecilia,
I just started introducing my body to green smoothies. I am interested in eventually adopting an all raw lifestyle. I'm good at making the smoothies, although sometimes the kale ones come out very grainy? Perhaps it's the blender I'm using. My question to you is this: If I'm doing around 2-3 green smoothies per day, is it still okay for me to eat eggs, and whole wheats throughout the day? I know ideally I shouldn't eat anything else, but like I said it's going to take time since It's expensive, but I'd like to make the changes well informed so that I don't “burn out!”

Also, my husband still eats everything else, so groceries are almost unaffordable. Any tips on how to shop at a local farmer's market and not break the bank? Thanks so much!!

6 Azamahmadirad { 08.06.10 at 3:48 am }

I started raw eating 2 weeks ago and thank you for your information .

7 BlessedMama { 08.09.10 at 9:50 pm }

Thanks for the post. I'm completely vegan yet find that I need to lose weight. Thankfully, I've been watching my portion control and exercising and have been successful. It just goes to show that even “healthy” eaters need to watch their waistlines.

8 Cecilia { 08.10.10 at 4:51 am }

Hi There,

There are no rules about what to eat or not to eat when you are drinking green smoothies. It's all about adding variety to your diet and how you feel after the foods you eat. There are so many choices of fruits, vegetables, grains, legumes . . .so I personally wouldn't limit myself to just bread and eggs, just a thought.

You can try buying in bulk at the farmer's market and asking for a deal. Also, produce in season is usually cheaper than produce out of season which is shipped from far away.

Best of Luck,

9 Cecilia { 08.10.10 at 4:52 am }

Hi, Thanks for Stopping Bye!

10 Cecilia { 08.10.10 at 4:58 am }

Hi Blessed Mama,
That is so great to hear that you are loosing weight. Good for you!
Please do share some of your tips.

11 The Raw Diet and Weight Loss Part 2 | Raw Glow Blog { 08.15.10 at 8:14 pm }

[…] I talked about the importance of being aware of calories when trying to loose weight; if you missed the first part click here. In this next installment I wanted to talk about raw food and satiation and how keeping yourself […]

12 kbc { 09.16.10 at 6:27 am }

Just saying hello. I am working toward this lifestyle. Mostly going at it as a daily / weekly thing. I usually eat one meal a day cooked and it’s almost always fish. Today I had chicken because I am about to start and am feeling out of sync. Also ate cooked rice. And I have coffee daily. It’s just one of my favorite things so can’t give it up.

All my other meals are raw. I do not consider myself a vegetarian. I also don’t eat dairy any more.

Just looking for a place to share I guess. Not much other than that.

13 Cecilia { 09.22.10 at 5:49 pm }

Thank You for sharing. You are a perfect example that you do not have to be 100% to embrace this lifestyle and make positive dietary changes. Best of luck to you.

P.S Have you tried green tea?

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