How to eat Raw Paleo
Here’s a lil’ fact you probably didn’t know about me:
I crave raw meat.
I always have, ever since I was a kid. My mother would have to hide the hamburger meat she was making for dinner, as she’d find little finger marks where I’d pulled off pieces and ate them straight. As soon as it was cooked, I lost interest.
Writing about it even now my mouth is salivating.
When someone says they eat a raw diet, 9 times out of 10 they mean they eat a raw vegan diet. Vegetables, fruits, nuts, and seeds… and the many different things you can concoct from combinations thereof.
But there’s a whole other kind of raw diet that doesn’t get talked about much: a raw paleo diet, or sometimes called a raw primal diet.
A raw paleo diet still has its fair share of raw veggies, fruits, nuts and seeds. But add to this some raw animal foods like: raw cheese, butter, and milk; raw eggs; raw fish and raw meat.
Now, before you gasp in horror, remember that most cultures include some form of raw animal foods as part of their regular diet. Common examples are sushi, steak tartare, or ceviche. These are all forms of raw animal protein and are widely accepted, if only selectively enjoyed.
What’s different with a raw paleo diet, is that the person is eating mostly or exclusively raw, including their animal proteins. It’s not the special occasion thing, it’s the daily thing.
When I was pregnant with my first daughter, I craved raw foods like mad. I was very tentative with them, however, wanting to be cautious with my pregnancy. I continued to drink raw milk throughout, but I only indulged in sushi once at a very reputable restaurant and basically waited until I’d given birth to indulge.
At that point, I’d been dreaming about trying a raw foods diet for the better part of nine months. Never being one to just dip my toes in the water gradually, I started pitching my hesitant husband into trying a full-throttle 30 days of exclusively raw foods.
It took a little convincing, but about a year later, he agreed. For 30 days in October of 2013, my husband and I ate exclusively raw paleo. You can read the full details here. I posted a ton of recipes and resources as I went.
There aren’t a lot of people out there who live this way, so it took some digging to find people I could interview on the topic. One of these folks was an incredible and inspiring raw foods advocate, Melissa Henig.
Melissa is one of the most healthy and vibrant humans I’ve ever met (up there with the other raw paleo types!), and she ate almost exclusively raw paleo. She’d been eating this way for years and had become a well-known raw paleo chef in the LA area, doing house drops of the most amazing goodies like raw mango pudding, raw chocolate beef marrow mousse… the most spectacular and nutrient dense concoctions I’ve ever seen!
She let me share one of her most sought-after recipes – Raw Banana Cream Butter Pie – when we did our 30 day challenge. At that point, she was working on a book on the raw paleo diet, complete with all her no-longer secret recipes.
The book came out earlier this year, and I’ve gotta say, I wish it had been around when we did our 30 day challenge! Raw Paleo: The Extreme Advantage of Eating Paleo Foods in the Raw will give you everything you need to know to get started on incorporating raw paleo foods in your diet.
Whether you want to add a little more raw animal protein in here and there, or whether you want to go for it and eat exclusively raw for a while to see how it feels like my husband and I did, Melissa’s book is a must-have for your journey. She’ll guide you through proper and safe sourcing of animal foods, preparation techniques, and loads of mouth-watering recipes.
You know, at the end of those 30 days eating raw paleo I honestly felt the best I think I’ve ever felt. The number of compliments I received on my skin, my eyes, and my overall wellbeing was to the point of being embarrassing.
Why didn’t I keep it up? Well, mostly because I’m married to a chef and we both LOVE to cook. There were just so many things I missed! But I do eat my fair share of raw meat, and now, when he’s making hamburgers, my hubby always asks me if I want mine raw. Usually the answer is yes.
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