To kick off a healthier you, try raw food
By Andrea Weigl
McClatchy-Tribune News Service
After holiday gluttony, many of us resolve to lose weight in the New Year.
Christie Kellogg wants to suggest a new approach to eating for permanent weight loss: raw food.
Kellogg, 41, a Raleigh, N.C., dental hygienist, teaches raw food cooking classes. A raw food diet focuses on eating vegetables, fruits, nuts, seeds and sprouted greens in their natural state. In other words, no cooked foods, or "dead" food, as raw foodists call them. Cooked foods, Kellogg explains, have fewer nutrients and enzymes than raw foods.
So why do you need to attend a cooking class when you don't cook these foods? Well, if all you ate were carrot sticks and salads as part of a raw food diet, you'd give up this diet quicker than you did Atkins, the cookie diet, the grapefruit diet or the cabbage soup diet.
In a raw food diet, Kellogg explains, marinating replaces cooking as a way to make these foods tasty while still retaining the health benefits. Kellogg says she teaches people how to prepare raw versions of lasagna and blueberry pie. She hopes these delicious dishes will help inspire people to continue with the diet.
Her seminars include a one-hour lecture and three hours of hands-on food preparation. Everyone goes home with a soaking chart, 50 recipes and a list for stocking the kitchen.
Kellogg says she started eating a raw food diet about six years ago. She was 20 pounds heavier and lethargic. After adopting a raw food diet, she lost the weight, could wear clothes she wore in high school and had more energy.
Kellogg does not believe a raw food diet has to be all or nothing. She eats about 70 percent raw food. She believes any amount of raw food in your diet is beneficial. "It's everyone's own journey," Kellogg says.
RAW BLUEBERRY PIE
2 cups raw almonds
1/2 cup dates, pitted
5 cups blueberries, divided
2 ripe bananas
1 1/2 tablespoon raw honey (see Note)
The night before, soak the almonds in enough water to cover for at least eight hours. Then drain and rinse. Soak the pitted dates in enough water to cover for 15 minutes to soften. Drain and rinse. To make the crust, grind almonds until fine in a food processor. Add the dates and blend until smooth. Remove from processor and pat into pie dish.
To make filling, combine 4 cups of blueberries, bananas and honey in a food processor. Blend until smooth. Remove from processor and add remaining cup of blueberries. Pour into crust. Refrigerate for at least three hours before serving.
Note: Raw honey can be purchased at Whole Foods or health food stores.
Makes 8 servings.
Per serving: calories, 322; fat, 18 grams (47 percent of calories); cholesterol, 0 milligrams, carbohydrate, 38 grams; fiber, 8 grams; protein, 9 grams; sodium, 2 milligrams; sugar, 23 grams
For more information
Go to Kellogg's Web site: www.rawinanutshell.com