35: ARE YOU SURE YOU DIGEST PROPERLY? – TREATMENT PLAN FOR RAW EATERS

In blog post 31: MUSCLE AND WEIGHT GROWTH ON RAW FOOD: DID I REACH MY GOAL IN 2014 OR DID I GIVE UP? I mentioned that one of support which helped me to achieve my goal for 2014 was also consultation and treatment plan in Naturopathic clinic by Dr. Aaron Wong, ND. Is there any connection with this article? To be honest, a lot.
Firstly if my goal was to build muscles and gain more weight it was necessary to eat properly and a lot. But what if around 50% of eaten food will be digested incorrectly? The result would be that I could eat to death and not achieve any significant result. Moreover raw food is about high quality food intake and without proper digestion it will not make sense to switch to raw food, right? With poor digestion there is a connection to skin problems, flatulence or the worst – inflammation and so forth. What I read and realized the flatulence is quite common in case of new raw eaters, because their body is not used to raw food (after eating whole life cooked and processed food). So if you have at least one of mentioned symptoms maybe your body would need some help from you :-)

When I switched to raw food I was not perfect. I had some of these problems as well but thanks god in the same time I had a chance to attend on presentation by Dr. Aaron Wong, ND in regards of digestion and generally healthy life style. This presentation took place in one of the great raw food restaurant Café By Tao in North Vancouver. It was literally like a bolt from the blue sky when after this presentation I received free consultation in that clinic. I couldn’t wait anymore and made a reservation. Dr. Aaron is not just great personality with huge experience in his field (including raw food) but also vegan! So I didn’t have to go through some explanation why I don’t eat animal products and why I am on raw food.

Following his instructions fulfilled his form about my health condition, my suffered surgeries / illnesses and also detailed description of my meal plan including my goals (gain more weight and lean mass. Firstly he checked out information about my allergies, next we discussed my illnesses and the last thing – food intake and my expectations.

After few minutes of consultation he literally shocked me with question if I have ever been tested for stomach acid. Basically it means if my stomach is weak or not. My answer was very simple. Not at all. In his opinion all symptoms and my previous illnesses including allergy problems could be caused by weak stomach and improper digestion level. I was told, that allergy is basically body sensitivity to food. If your stomach is strong you can very easily fight with low quality food, chemicals in food and so forth. Weak stomach along with poor digestion could be surely connected to inflammation and my other problems caused by switching to raw food. Dr. Aaron told me, that my food intake and life style is great so the problem has to be somewhere else. Let’s start the treatment !

TREATMENT PLANT FOR RAW EATERS TO SUPPORT YOUR DIGESTIVE SYSTEM

1. Phase (acid stomach challenge)
So I started my treatment plan that consisted of eating strategies, massages and right food combination. Firstly we tried the acid stomach challenge. This test is very simple. During meals I should eat pills with pepsin (a digestive enzyme). If your stomach is strong you should feel some kind of heat. First day I took 1 pill during meal and nothing happened. Next day I tried two pills. Nothing happened. This continued to 10 pills in the same time during meal and finally I felt some heat. My rawoman Andrea tried just 1 pill and she could feel it. This was another proof that there is a something wrong with me. Because my problem was not in the food intake Dr. Aaron told me that weak stomach is definitely the issue.

2. Phase (probiotics)
Before we started with all the strategies which could help me with my stomach problem he asked me about probiotics, if I eat it or not. To be honest, since I switched to raw food and got rid of the dairy, yogurts etc…I totally forget about probiotics. He told me that this could has also some connection so I got vegetarian pills with probiotics for 30 days (you can check out the picture below). This helped a lot. Since this time I finally added few raw vegan probiotics meals to our diet.

TREATMENT PLAN FOR RAW EATERS
3. Phase (food intake strategies and right combination of food)
After I got my probiotics Dr. Aaron highly recommended me to combine the food properly as well (before I was not really worried about it, I could eat banana with orange or meloun with strawberries). In this case helped me a website Puristat – Food Combination and picture with right combination of food below. Dr. Aaron also recommended me to drink a lot of apple cider (the best 30 minutes before meal). Because I was eating a lot the apple cider was always with me :-) For further he told me to eat slowly (this is not a problem for me, because since I am on raw I eat my main dish normally around 30 minutes – no exception) and also be focused just on eating (no reading, no listening the podcasts etc…) and classic – avoid stress during the day. Finally we advised to eat 1 tea spoon of Swedish drops around 15-30 min. before main meals. If you do not want to eat drops you can instead of it eat leafs of arugula, dandelion, yellow dock, gentian root or burdock root bark. (basically anything plant based what is bitter and will support the digestive enzymes).

TREATMENT PLAN FOR RAW EATERS
All mentioned recommendation should cased the effect, that your body will be all day long stimulated to produce digestive enzyme. However, these methods are only temporary. Once your body gets used to it you won’t need these strategies anymore. But…I really like apple cider, so even my treatment program is finished already, I drink apple cider every day, because I also know how good it is for my body.

Try to identify proteins or carbohydrates that cause bloating (soy, pea, beans, artificial sweeteners, lactose etc)

Eat Chia Porridge first thing in the morning to coat the stomach:

Chia porridge recipe:
– 4-5 Tbsp fresh ground chia seeds (make sure to grind them yourself in a coffee grinder to get the most nutrition out of them, as the whole seeds will not digest well)
– 1 cup Unsweetened Almond Milk
– Mix chia with almond milk and let soak overnight in the fridge (I used the blender to mix it up well but some people hand stir)

Optional porridge toppings to taste:
– Cinnamon
– cocoa powder
– berries
– sliced fruit
– hemp seeds
– crushed almonds

SUMMARY OF WHOLE PROCESS:

  1. Acid stomach challenge
  2. High quality food intake (double check your nutrients using Cron-o-metr
  3. Right combination of meals (http://www.puristat.com/bloating/Food-Combining.aspx or picture with food combinations above)
  4. Drink apple cider during the day (the best 1 hour before meal)
  5. Eat slowely (main dish around 30 minutes) and don’t disperse yourself by other activities (reading etc…)
  6. Avoid stress as much as possible
  7. 1 tea spoon of Swedish drops around 15-30 min. before main meals. If you do not want to eat drops you can instead of it eat leafs of arugula, dandelion, yellow dock, gentian root or burdock root bark. (basically anything plant based what is bitter and will support the digestive enzymes).

After few months of patience and “treatment”my digestive system rapidly improved and almost all problems disappeared. Moreover I learned a lot of new things in regards of digestion and raw food itself.

In case you will have any questions in this regards please feel free to contact me over the online / offline chat or over the RAW Emergency and I will be more than happy to help you out :-)

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Cheers

Rawman – Daniel

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Rawman - Daniel
Rawman - Daniel