Below is an outline of steps for starting a raw food diet and following through with it so that you achieve the very best weight loss success possible.
Those who just want to get going may wish to skip straight to step 4.
However, it has been shown that the more actively you engage your brain in clarifying your goals (steps 1-3), the higher your chances of actually accomplishing them will be.
One of the most important first steps in starting a raw food diet, particularly for weight loss, is to evaluate where you are now. Seriously, get out a notebook and do a little soul searching with this self-evaluation exploration. It only takes a few minutes. But your honest answers to yourself can be very revealing and may help you better plan your weight loss strategy.
Pinpointing your specific reasons for wanting to lose weight will not only motivate you for actually starting a raw food diet, but also to strengthen your resolve to stick to your plan even when temptations arise.
The next step in starting a raw food diet for successful weight loss is envisioning as clearly as possible where you would like to be - because a road map leads nowhere until you have a destination in mind. And unless you want to end up where you are currently heading, you'll need to start changing your direction to get to your new destination!
To increase your likelihood of reaching your weight loss goals, you may use some of these powerful envisioning tools to fully clarify them.
You can have all the desire in the world to lose weight, but until you are actually ready to do something about it, you'll just be spinning your wheels. If you feel that overpowering sense of readiness within you for starting a raw food diet right now, then let's get to it! Make a commitment to yourself that you are going to do what it takes to finally make your weight loss dreams a reality!
You can even use the following Make a Commitment page to commemorate the occasion. Read it out loud to yourself or your support buddies, or print it out and hang it on your refrigerator to remind yourself how much losing weight means to you. Seeing that reminder will really help you stay on track.
Ok, now we're getting into the real nitty gritty details of starting a raw food diet. You have decided you are ready to lose weight and you've made a commitment to do what it takes to make it happen. Now it's time to plan out what you need to do to get from here to there.
First) Switching from your current diet to starting a raw food diet is as simple as just choosing different foods. If you've never explored the raw food diet before, you may learn more about it on the Raw Food Diet Review page.
Second) The next part of your strategy is determining how fast or slow you would like to take your transition into raw foods. Check out the List of Raw Foods I've provided. Print it out and circle your favorite foods. The easiest way to start a raw food diet is by simply incorporating more of these raw foods into your current diet at a pace that feels comfortable to you. Either eat them as snacks, add them to your meals, or use them to replace a few of your meals until they start to edge out your cooked meals all together.
Third) Next, begin to look for raw food recipes that contain some of your favorite raw foods from the above list, or that replace your current cooked food recipes. Check out the Easy Raw Food Recipes on this site for some good ideas. Most people tend to eat the same 10 or so meals over and over, so if you can find at least this many recipes to serve as your foundation, you'll be doing well.
Fourth) Once you've identified some recipes you'd like to try, put together some meal plans. Choose whether you will try one new raw food recipe a day, or whether you feel ready to replace all of your meals with raw foods. I've put together a few sample Raw Food Diet Meal Plans to give you some ideas.
Fifth) Compile a grocery list from your list of raw foods, your recipes and your meal plans. If some of the ingredients in the recipes are not usually found in your grocery store, call a nearby health food store and see if they carry them. Many of these items are available online as well. Check out the Raw Food Products on this site for more options.
Now for the fun part of starting a raw food diet: shopping! Go get those groceries! Fill your fridge and cupboards with all those gorgeous, colorful, healthy raw foods! If you're ready to go gung-ho, clean out all the old cooked, pasteurized, chemicalized, preservative-filled, artificial-flavor-filled, not-so-healthy foods and throw them out or donate them to charity.
Sharpen your knives, dust off your food processor and your blender, or check out my recommendations if you need to purchase some new kitchen equipment or gadgets. They really do make this lifestyle much easier, though they are not necessary if you can't swing it right now.
If you're really feeling wild-n-crazy, unplug your stove and give away your microwave! Or at the very least, turn them into additional cupboard space like we do. Now that you have an official raw food kitchen – you're almost a raw foodist! Let's get to it!
You know what you're going to eat, you know when you're going to eat it, you've got the food in the fridge and recipes ready to go. Now it's time to put your plan into action for starting a raw food diet. Yet you still have one more decision to make: when are you going to make your food? Here are your choices:
Personally, I have found my life easier when I make up my salads for the week ahead. I sprinkle a little lemon juice over the top of them, and they seem to last 4 or 5 days in the fridge just fine.
Some recipes, especially those that have been dehydrated, freeze nicely and can be made up ahead of time and then transferred into the fridge to thaw on the day you want to eat them. Remember, you won't be heating them!
Fruits, however, tend to be best when cut right before eating them. And if you'd rather not make food at all, find a good salad bar, a raw food restaurant, order some prepared raw foods online, and/or find a raw food chef who would make your food for you! Lucky you!
The above may be all it takes for starting a raw food diet, but if you're going to lose weight, you need to follow through and really stick with it.
If I were to name the biggest key to my success in losing over 100 pounds on the raw food weight loss plan, it would be the mantra I would repeat to myself constantly: “I made a commitment and I'm sticking to it.” Just saying that kept me from making many possible mistakes when faced with overwhelming temptations. Living in a slender body every single day means waaaaaaay more to me than giving in to whatever 10 second temptation would have, that's for sure! So above all else, STICK WITH IT!
This is the day you've been waiting for! The day the scale hits that magic number, or the day you fit into your goal outfit, or whatever other marker you set for yourself as your indicator of accomplishment. CONGRATULATIONS!
No matter how much or little weight you lost, you set your goal of starting a raw food diet, learned how to live a healthier lifestyle, and changed your life! Throw yourself a big raw food party and invite all your new raw food buddies! You deserve it! But unless you want to start all over again someday, keep STICKING WITH IT!