When I first moved to raw food eating as a result of an illness about 10 years ago, I became very focused on learning as many parts of the living food cuisine as possible. I already knew the value of such a lifestyle and had experimented previously; I already knew a lot about nutrition.
To me, the illness itself is irrelevant. I was sick and the only thing that mattered was returning to vibrant health. I made a choice to focus on learning about health rather than learning about illness.
My quest for knowledge helped me to have a focus that was "for" something rather than "against" something. I saturated myself with information. I found the hope and the beauty in everything I saw.
I read books, took classes, watched videos and DVD's. My new knowledge led me in creating a raw-food kitchen, purchasing equipment, and sharing information with others. The more I educated myself and experimented, the more aware I became that I would not turn back. My original plan was to eat 80% raw, living, vegan foods, but as I was acquiring knowledge, I committed to 100%.
That 100% commitment continued for a full 6 months. I returned to full health in about three months and continued to get stronger. I now maintain a 75-95% raw food lifestyle each week. The most difficult part of maintaining 100% commitment for me is social. Most of my friends and family are considered by American standards to be conscious of making healthy food choices, but they have not adopted a raw food cuisine.
Most raw food enthusiasts are passionate about helping others. I'm definitely passionate both about the lifestyle and about helping others. However, I sincerely honor the choices that others make. In fact, I recently started writing a blog that's specifically about making choices, making healthy choices joyfully.
I love helping others, yet only when they take the first step. I don't argue for the lifestyle I've chosen. I'm especially not interested in arguing against the lifestyle others have chosen, even if it's very different from mine.
I've found that the most important ingredients in beginning and maintaining a mostly raw food lifestyle are knowledge and a positive mental attitude. I prefer the term "living foods," but that has not caught on as much as "raw foods."
Life is filled with choices. When I chose the name of my blog, I decided to honor the importance of choices, and especially choices made joyfully. Writing helps me to stay focused on health. http://joyfulchoices.com/
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