Thursday
Sep242009

Are You Drinking Enough Water?

With all the attention we’ve been giving to food, so far, it only seems fair to change things up for a moment and pay a little attention to water.  After all, with the sole exception of oxygen, nothing else is more important to human life.  

The common recommendation is to drink 8-10 glasses, daily.  Drinking at least that much water is certainly necessary for those eating cooked diets, but what can you expect, considering the dehydration factor of grains, meat and cheese?  These foods are loaded with salt and have had their moisture cooked out of them.  They create a water debt, meaning you have to drink extra water, just to offset the amount they steal from you. 

The situation changes a bit when your diet is fresh, raw fruits and vegetables.  Unlike cooked foods, they still possess all their moisture.  In fact, they have such a high water content that they even provide a good portion of your body’s overall water needs.  Because of this, when you eat a raw-vegan diet, you’ll find you don’t need to drink nearly as much water as you used to — possibly only needing a couple of glasses each day. 

But don’t get me wrong — by no means am I suggesting that you should be avoiding drinking water.  Perhaps the best way to start the morning is by drinking a large glass or two.  During the night, a lot of water gets used up in cleansing and repairing your body, so a large drink is great for refilling your tank.  It also does a great job of helping to flush out all the wastes that were tracked down during the night’s detox efforts.  Think of it as your morning internal-shower

They are situations where you’ll want to make sure you increase your water intake beyond your usual amount.  For example, if you’re detoxing, you’ll want to drink a lot of water because your body will be continuously flushing itself out at a much higher rate than usual and using up a lot of extra water.  Also, if you’re working out, or simply are in a hot environment, you’ll obviously need to drink extra to account for all the moisture lost by sweating.

What I’m saying is that there’s not any standard “right” answer for how much water to drink.  There can’t be one magic number because there are so many variables to consider.  Instead, what you should think about is being proactive about keeping yourself hydrated by simply paying attention to your body and drinking as much water as it asks for.  You don’t have to do any number crunching because your body does that on its own.  You just have to watch for the signs.

While we may not realize it, most of us spend a majority of our lives in some degree of dehydration.  Our body masses are between sixty and seventy percent water and it only takes a two-percent water loss to begin feeling the effects of dehydration.  When we’re eating salty, dry, cooked foods, a two-percent loss is only a mouthful away.

The early symptoms of mild dehydration can include fatigue, mild headaches, dizziness when standing up, dry skin, constipation, dark urine and thirst.  Many of us seem to have accepted some of these symptoms as a common part of daily life.  But chronic dehydration is very taxing on the body, and we don’t want it to be part of our lives.  Spotting and preventing dehydration is easy if you watch for it. 

This may seem silly, but if I asked you what feelings you associate with feeling thirsty, what would you say?  There’s a good chance that the images you bring to mind include a dry mouth and throat — and possibly even a slight faintness or even a mild headache, in stronger cases. 

While a dry mouth is certainly a valid sign that you need water, it’s not a feeling that you should normally be experiencing when thirsty.  These feelings are what should be called unnatural thirst.  They’re more than the natural call for water — they’re symptoms of the over-consumption of cooked foods that suck our body dry. 

On the other hand, a natural thirst doesn’t feel dry or unpleasant at all, but rather is just a slightly excited desire for water that comes from the back of the throat.  There shouldn’t be any feelings of discomfort.

I should point out that, even after removing cooked foods from the diet, you may continue to experience signs of unnatural thirst for some time.  This is usually the result of your body eliminating salt that has accumulated from years of a cooked diet.  This may take many weeks, and depends upon how you ate previously, but it will pass.

Another sign of dehydration is dark urine.  Ideally, urine should be quite light.  I don’t mean that it should always be totally clear, but it should be closer to the clear side of the spectrum than to the yellow side.

The important thing to remember is that keeping hydrated is very important to your health.  Virtually every bodily function relies upon water directly, and dehydration causes strain. 

Keeping yourself well hydrated becomes much easier the more raw-vegan your diet becomes.  Just pay attention to the signals your body gives you, drink water as needed, and cut out the cooked food.  You'll find your energy level greatly increases and you'll quite simply feel better overall.

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Real-World Raw Health and Nutrition:
The raw food diet made easy for your busy life!

Mike Dillman is a self-taught raw-vegan who began his journey nearly five years ago.   Having worked his way through all the challenges firsthand, he wants to save you from making the same mistakes yourself.  You can visit Mike's blog at Real-World-Raw.com to learn how easy it can be to make a raw-vegan diet fit your busy lifestyle.

If you want to experience the amazing health that comes with living the one truly natural diet, Mike's new book, "Real-World Raw: The Busy Person's Guide to the Raw-Vegan Diet" is just what you're looking for.  See for yourself. 
To Download a FREE 20-Page Sneak Preview of the eBook click here!

Wednesday
Sep232009

Live an Active Raw Lifestyle and Feel Your Best

This isn’t an exercise website.  My mission is to show you how you can experience great improvements in your health simply by changing your eating habits to a clean, natural diet.  Even so, I feel it’s important for me to touch on the importance of including exercise in a healthy lifestyle.  A totally healthy body is the sum of many different components.  What we eat and drink are certainly very important parts of that, but they’re not the only ingredients. 

Our minds and bodies experience tremendous benefits from exercise.  Many of these go well beyond the visible fitness and strength advantages. 

  • The movement of your body during exercise gets your lymphatic system circulating, which helps clean out built-up toxins.  This means exercising will make your detox pass much quicker. 
  • When you get up and move your body, endorphins are released into the blood stream, improving your mood and instilling a sense of wellbeing and accomplishment.  
  • Exercise does a great job of strengthening against cravings and binges because it provides a sense of physical satisfaction — one of the main things we’re subconsciously seeking when we overeat. 

Those are just a few great reasons to get your body moving, but there are so many more. 

If this were a blog about exercise we could go on forever about this, but I know I don’t need to prod you because, after all, exercise is fun!  There are so many great activities to get into, so you’re bound to find a perfect fit.  If you have trouble motivating yourself, or you just don’t know where to start, talk to your friends.  Walking, cycling, swimming or rollerblading are great ways to get together and socialize.  Start modestly if you’re still detoxing, but once that’s passed you’ll be amazed at how much your energy level improves.  Your new, clean, raw-vegan body will have all sorts of extra energy to unleash, so take the opportunity to get up and go try something fun!

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Mike Dillman has lived a raw-vegan diet since 2004. Because he's experienced the learning curve firsthand, he wants to save you from making the same mistakes yourself. You can visit Mike's blog at Real-World-Raw.com to learn how easy it can be to make a raw-vegan diet fit your busy lifestyle. You can also download his free eBook, "The 7 Biggest Raw Mistakes", where Mike lays out the major missteps beginning raw foodists make that undermine their success and tells you how you can avoid them. To get your free eBook click here.

Tuesday
Sep222009

Is it Okay to Use Frozen Fruit on My Raw-Vegan Diet?

Frozen fruit is fine.

There’s no reason to avoid frozen fruit, and I use it myself on a regular basis.  Nearly all the berries that I use in my smoothies are frozen, because it isn’t remotely economical for me to use fresh ones during most of the year.  There’s a window of about two months where I can use fresh berries — either picked from the backyard, or bought at the store — but otherwise I’d have to buy really expensive imported varieties.  Unless you live somewhere with plenty of fresh berries at cheap (or free) prices, I suspect you’ll also be using frozen berries yourself.  This isn’t a big deal. Frozen fruits aren’t quite as good as fresh ones, but they’re really close.  Freezing doesn’t cause the nasty chemical changes that cooking does and much of the nutritional value remains intact. 

Thaw it first

The only thing to keep in mind regarding frozen fruit is to let it thaw before you use it.  Eating cold food is like putting an ice pack into your stomach.  As soon as you eat it, it causes your stomach to contract.  Just imagine how you’d react if someone doused you with ice water — you’d likely curl into a fetal position and shiver.  This is exactly how your stomach reacts to eating frozen fruit, and that’s not a good thing.  A cold, contracted stomach shuts down and suspends digestion, leaving your meal sitting in a frigid state of limbo, which can lead to indigestion.  To avoid this problem, simply let your fruit thaw first, either by soaking it in warm water or by moving it out of the freezer and into the refrigerator a day or two in advance.  As long as you keep this in mind, you shouldn’t worry about using frozen fruit as part of your raw-vegan diet.

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Mike Dillman has lived a raw-vegan diet since 2004. Because he's experienced the learning curve firsthand, he wants to save you from making the same mistakes yourself. You can visit Mike's blog at Real-World-Raw.com to learn how easy it can be to make a raw-vegan diet fit your busy lifestyle. You can also download his free eBook, "The 7 Biggest Raw Mistakes", where Mike lays out the major missteps beginning raw foodists make that undermine their success and tells you how you can avoid them. To get your free eBook click here.

Monday
Sep212009

Tips to Discourage Fruit Flies Around the House

Every year, during the summer months, many of us are subjected to some unwanted visitors.  Fruit flies can be a problem around anyone's home, but they can be a bigger problem if you're a raw-vegan.  It's pretty much impossible to banish fruit flies entirely, but they can certainly be managed.  Like with most things in life, the key is to be proactive.  It's easier to prevent a fruit fly infestation in the first place rather than trying to get ride of them after the fact.  Stay a step ahead and you'll be in good shape. 

Tips for preventing fruit flies in your home:

  • Keep fruit in the fridge during sumer:
    With your fruit locked away in the refrigerator, the little pests won't be able to get at it, (or even smell it).  Just remember to set out the next day's fruit the night before so it's warmed up by morning.
    (Side note: Keep in mind, certain fruits shouldn't go in the fridge unless you want them to permanently stop ripening. Tropical fruit like mangos, papayas and melons, and stone fruit like peaches and plums should be left at room temperature until they're fully ripe.  Then, once they're ripe, feel free to cut them up and put them in the fridge.  If you refrigerate them too soon, they won't ripen at all.)
  • Use over-ripe fruit quickly:
    Fruit flies are particularly attracted to the stronger smell of over-ripe fruit.  Don't let it sit around for long.  If you can't use it up in time, cut it up and freeze it to use in a smoothie.
  • Store compost well:
    While it smells bad to us, the aroma of compost is alluring to fruit flies.  Make sure you keep your food scraps in a container with an air-tight lid.  You should take your compost out frequently too, if you have the option.
  • Don't let your dishes pile up:
    This one's so obvious we can often overlook it.  Leftovers appeal to fruit flies too.  Wash your dishes and rinse out old bottles and cans quickly.  If they sit out for days, soon you'll have a swarm of pesky insects on your hands.
  • Clean out your drains:
    The drain in your kitchen sink has plenty of old food residue in it.  This is a perfect breeding ground for fruit flies.  Keep the pipes clean to discourage any smell.
  • Use a fruit fly trap:
    No matter how spotless you keep your kitchen, there's still going to be the occasional few that sneak through.  I use a really simple trap that you can get at most hardware stores for a couple of dollars.  (Of course, you can always get a prettier one if you prefer.) For bait, I use vinegar.  You could always use fruit juice, but I use vinegar because it lasts a long time and because the flies are much less likely to lay eggs and hatch inside the trap.

By keeping on top of things and adopting these habits, you should be able to enjoy a virtually fruit-fly-free summer.

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Mike Dillman has lived a raw-vegan diet since 2004. Because he's experienced the learning curve firsthand, he wants to save you from making the same mistakes yourself. You can visit Mike's blog at Real-World-Raw.com to learn how easy it can be to make a raw-vegan diet fit your busy lifestyle. You can also download his free eBook, "The 7 Biggest Raw Mistakes", where Mike lays out the major missteps beginning raw foodists make that undermine their success and tells you how you can avoid them. To get your free eBook click here.

Wednesday
Sep162009

Download a Free Sneak Preview of My New Book!

Hi everyone,

Just writing back to let you know that I've uploaded the free preview I promised you.

Click here to go straight to the download page. 
You can also find the link on the products page on my site.

Whether you're interested in making your raw diet work better for you, are starting a raw-vegan diet for the first time, or are simply a little curious what all the talk is about, I guarantee you'll find plenty of excellent information and helpful advice that's right up your alley!

Go ahead and take a look at the free preview.  It doesn't cost you a a penny to give it a try, and you just might discover the perfect diet book you've always wanted.

=========================================================================

Real-World Raw Health and Nutrition:
The raw food diet made easy for your busy life!

Mike Dillman is a self-taught raw-vegan who began his journey nearly five years ago.   Having worked his way through all the challenges firsthand, he wants to save you from making the same mistakes yourself.  You can visit Mike's blog at Real-World-Raw.com to learn how easy it can be to make a raw-vegan diet fit your busy lifestyle. FREE eBook"The 7 Biggest Raw Mistakes" Mike's FREE eBook lays out the major missteps beginning raw foodists make that undermine their success and tells you how you can avoid them. To get Mike’s FREE eBook click here!