Advice on how to get used to raw food diets and how to handle social situations while doing a Raw, Palaeolithic Diet

by EDITOR on May 19, 2009

A Raw Animal Food(RAF) diet is one of the most difficult diets to follow, given the social prejudices against eating raw meat.However, there are various ways to get around such biases:

First of all, this may surprise many RAF newbies but there is a large, growing enthusiasm for raw animal food dishes among the general public , given the interest in new types of cuisine. This is partly because of the very low quality of kebab takeaway diners and other fast-food. But, also, people are becoming spoilt for choice, and are constantly looking for more exotic alternatives. The result is, there has been an upsurge in the number of local Japanese Sashimi restaurants offering raw-fish dishes, and people are less wary of ordering raw  -meat dishes like steak-tartare/beef-carpaccio/carne-cruda from French/Hungarian/.Russian etc. restaurants. Then there are more exotic restaurants like Ethiopian restaurants offering raw meat kitfo, oyster bars offering raw oysters, sushi chains offering sushi(raw fish and, unfortunately, cooked rice) etc. So, it’s not really much of a problem to eat raw animal food at a restaurant while a companion eats cooked food.

Then there are other possibilities:- some RAFers I’ve come across, such as Primal Dieters, have found that some ethnic restaurant-types, such as the Korean Teriyaki ones, allow the customers/clients to cook their own food, being given saucepans etc. to cook their food etc. These RAFers just pretend to cook their foods and eat them raw, and since guests at other tables don’t notice, it’s not an issue.

Another option, when eating out, is to ask the waiters to only cook the meats “cold on a cold plate”. This is an American term for just cooking the meats for c.10 seconds on each side before serving them. Of course, some restaurants, notably in the US, may be afraid of being sued, so may be reluctant to follow such a command, but it’s at least worth trying.

Eating at home is more complicated. What most RAFers do is to determine, via experimentation, what sort of cooked/processed foods are most harmful to them, then they avoid those, and only occasionally eat those cooked-/processed foods which do less harm to them. Obviously, it makes sense, in this regard, to ask for grassfed meats, and that they be cooked as lightly cooked as possible.
Obviously, during some social situations(eg:- Christmas), it’s going to be difficult for RAFers to insist on raw/rawish guidelines. In such cases, it’s generally recommended for RAF newbies to take high-quality probiotics and high-grade enzyme supplements, beforehand, as these can alleviate, to some extent, some of the more unpleasant detox symptoms that RAFers can get from eating toxic cooked foods.

Easing into raw animal food(RAF) diets:-

Many newbies complain, initially, about the taste of raw meats. This is partly because taste is determined out of long years of habit. For example, many RAFers have noted how they would go into the kitchen as very young children and steal pieces of raw meats to eat, which they found to taste fine at the time, yet, after years of being used to eating cooked, they found it quite difficult to get used to eating raw meats again. There is also another factor:- many raw meats, particularly wild meats, are very rich in flavour, whereas cooked meats are often virtually devoid of taste(that’s why most cooked dishes involve large amounts of seasoning with spices and herbs), so that people on former SAD-diets are simply not used to the richer flavour of raw, high-quality  meats.

With most RAFers(assuming they eat a hefty percentage raw), the time they need in which they become gradually accustomed to the taste of raw meats(and enjoy it) is c.8 to 12 months.It’s generally advised that they start with raw(fatty) muscle-meats, and then start with raw organ-meats of various kinds. Eventually, RAF newbies should be able to get used to the taste of wild muscle-meats/organ-meats(which are, incidentally, superior, nutrition-wise, to 100% grassfed animal food).

There are various ways to ease into a RAF diet. One way, which I used, was to just go cold-turkey and eat raw from the get-go(well, apart from 1 cooked meal 3 weeks later). That can work if one is deathly ill and absolutely desperate. For those who have a little more time to spare, the following idea is also recommended:- first buy only high-grade foods(eg:- 100% grassfed/organic meats),start off cooking your food at the lowest cooking temperature you can currently handle.Add as many processed sauces to each cooked dish as you like to each dish. Then,every few days/weeks/months, you should lower the average cooking-temperature of your dishes by 1 degree each time, until, eventually, you should be able to eat it all raw at room-temperature. In the meantime, you should substitute the processed sauces, gradually, with raw sauces, even reducing the amounts of the raw sauces after a time. After a while, you may well find that you prefer eating raw meats without any sauces at all. That is what most RAFers eventually aim for.
Not all RAFers/RPDers go fully 100% raw. This is understandable, given the social pressures to eat cooked-foods(indeed most 100% RAFers I know of, already have families/partners who are also 100% raw). It’s usually stated that, for the best/speediest health-recovery, it’s best to go at least 85% raw, for best results, which the majority of RAFers practise, given that better  health is the most cited reason for doing such a diet. Also, on an anecdotal level, most RAFers report a speedier rate of recovery if they include a variety of raw organ-meats in their diet , along with the usual raw muscle-meats. This is no doubt, due to the higher levels of nutrients in raw organ-meats. Plus, it’s generally recommended to eat the fattier cuts of meats/organ-meats as raw animal fat is considered the healthiest food on a raw, palaeolithic diet, with cooked animal fat being viewed as the most unhealthy food of all.

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