Monica Fink | Raw Foods: Beating the Heat

Raw Foods: Beating the Heat

Posted by Monica Fink in Nutrition 28 Jun 2016

Feeling the effects of summer temperatures?  Does it seem to get worse every year?  Thanks to a healthy lifestyle, it’s hard for me to believe that I am approaching the dreaded “change of life.”  Many of my peers are in the throes of it and I really empathize with them.  When I was in my early 20s, I was diagnosed with Poly-Cystic Ovarian Syndrome (PCOS).  A combination of symptoms prevalent in those that are diagnosed with PCOS tends to mimic menopausal symptoms.  I frequently experienced the hot flashes so common during this time.  Thankfully, I found my way to healing and feel confident that I will not re-experience these as I sail through a natural phase in my life.

Why am I so confident?  It is interesting to note that the traditional Japanese, arguably one of the healthiest of populations, do not have a word for “menopause.”  When your body is in balance, it is also in harmony with the natural cycles of life.  A key component to a healthy and balanced body is eating plenty of fresh fruits and vegetables in their raw form.


Raw fruits and vegetables provide fuel for our day while continually cleansing the body as well.  They are filled with potent disease protectors and detoxifying compounds.  Raw foods also require far less energy to digest and absorb their nutrients than do cooked foods (not to mention unhealthy processed foods).  It is estimated that only 20% of available resources are used to digest a raw food meal versus 80% required to digest a cooked meal.  Not only do we receive more energy from whole living foods; we also spend less energy processing them.


Raw fruits and vegetables are extremely hydrating.  Cooked foods have had the majority of their water content removed.  This superior hydration helps us stay cool as well.


If you are suffering with summer heat on top of hot flashes, or just want to stay as cool as possible during this time of year, try a little experiment.  For one or two or even more days, eat only whole, fresh, ripe, and raw fruits and vegetables.  Try to keep your overall fat content very low.  I typically do not eat any fat until the evening meal, usually in the form of a salad dressing, avocado, or nuts/seeds sprinkled on a salad.  You can enjoy smoothies, fruit salads, green salads – just keep it raw.  Pay attention to how you feel after even just a few days.


Over time, the incorporation of raw foods will help cleanse your body, restore balance, and begin to heal whatever ails you.


Jicama-Mango Salad is a great way to enjoy more raw foods.  It uses traditional Mexican flavors like lime, cayenne pepper, and cilantro.  Jicama is similar to root vegetables but can be eaten raw.  It is slightly sweet, very crunchy, and has a high water content.

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