Experiences from raw food retreats
by Sue Kira, Naturopath & Clinical Nutritionist
Client name and identifying information changed
Many years ago, under my True Vitality naturopathic banner, I ran one-week raw food retreats bi-monthly in beautiful Byron Bay for three years which were loved by so many people. Initially I had a juice fasting day during the week, and on those days many people would feel very sick, throw-up and get headaches. So I canned the juice days and solely focused on raw foods for the duration of the retreats.
Not many had reactions to the raw foods, apart from some headaches from coming off caffeine for the first day or two. Apart from that, the raw foods were well received. Most participants were very excited to discover that there were so many delicious raw food options.
They were also happy to learn that raw foods did not have to be cold and can be served warm up to approx 48°C/118°F so enzymes are not reportedly denatured, specially for the winter retreats. We also included hot herbal teas which helped.
Some of the participants returned home and continued with a 100% raw food diet and found it really suited them, whereas others incorporated some raw foods into their daily diets.
For my family, we tend to vary it according to the weather and how we feel. In the warmer months (and we have plenty of these in Australia) we tend to eat more raw than cooked meals, whereas in winter it tends to be the other way around. But even in winter we tend to have a salad for lunch and often breakfast is raw, but at night we usually have a hot soup or meal.
It is important for your health to listen to your body and honour the seasons. I know when I’m feeling run-down or tired or feel like I’m coming down with a cold, then I feel more like warming soups and hot foods, but when I’m feeling good (which is most of the time) then more raw foods suit me.