Archive for the tag - raw

Is Eating Only Bananas Healthy?

Dear Davey,

I watched a YouTube video about a woman who eats only bananas. She said that the diet has improved her life and that she’s lost a lot of fat. Is this diet really something that I should try?

From,
Shane

banana-man-eat-400x400Hey Shane,

Eating only bananas isn’t a great idea. Why? Because bananas lack important nutrients that your body needs. Bananas have almost no vitamin A, no calcium, no vitamin d, no vitamin b-12, almost no iron and just a gram of protein. They also lack significant quantities of the essential fats that your body needs.

The banana diet is actually an offshoot of a more popular diet that was designed by Dr. Douglas Graham. It’s called the 80/10/10 diet. In a nutshell, this diet says that at least 80% of your calories should come from carbohydrates. Another 10% can come from each protein and fats. The diet is raw and vegan, meaning that all food sources are plant-based and uncooked. As such, the diet is big on fruits and vegetables. There’s no meat or even grains as part of this diet.

As with any diet, there are pros and cons.

In terms of cons, it is very difficult to keep vast quantities of ripe fruits and vegetables in your home. When we buy produce from the grocery store, it usually isn’t ripe – so the timing can be a challenge. Also, because the diet is very strict, it’s difficult to maintain at social gatherings and restaurants. Like any raw diet, sustainability and proper education can be a challenge.

In terms of pros, look no further than the many 80/10/10 enthusiasts. For fans, this diet is life-changing. Practitioners note having tremendous amounts of energy, body fat loss, improved sleep and better productivity.

My recommendation is this: Diets are very personal.

You know who you are and what you’re able to do. The right diet for me might not be the right diet for you. Eating entirely fruits and vegetables isn’t something that floats my boat, but it doesn’t necessarily mean that this diet isn’t a possibility for the next person. And just because a diet is difficult to maintain doesn’t necessarily mean that it’s impossible for you. For most people, I recommend a very realistic diet of lean meats, nuts, beans, whole grains, fruits and generous amounts of vegetables. In fact, you can read all about it in my Insanely Easy Guide to Eating Smarter.

But none of that means that the 80/10/10 diet is necessarily a bad choice for you. Diets are personal.

Love,
Davey

Raw Vs. Roasted Nuts: Health Benefits.

all types of nutsThe other day, I was chatting with a friend about the benefits of raw versus roasted nuts.

In a world where so-called raw diets are increasingly popular, there’s a tendency to assume that raw is healthier. The science for this is less clear. While some foods are healthier when eaten raw (as heat can destroy nutrients and reduce the benefits of certain foods), this isn’t true of all foods. Tomatoes, for example, are healthier when heated due to lycopene content.

So what’s the deal with nuts?

There hasn’t been a study to specifically determine how roasting nuts changes their nutritional properties. But according to Dr. Rui Hai Liu, a professor of food science at Cornell University who has studied the benefits of nut consumption, “you will get health benefits from consuming either raw or roasted nuts.” He continues, “I don’t think the processing will decrease the benefits, and it may improve the bioavilability of some bioactive compounds.”

But here’s the big catch.

Many of the “roasted” nuts at grocery stores are actually fried. It’s true. If you look at the ingredients, you’ll likely see vegetable oil and salt listed. The vegetable oil is added during the frying process – and then, to add insult to injury, the nuts are usually salted.

If you prefer roasted nuts but want to avoid purchasing fried nuts, only buy nuts labeled as “dry-roasted nuts.” Or, even better, buy raw nuts and roast them yourself in the oven. Don’t add oil and don’t add salt. The nuts will still taste great.

In summary, you can’t go wrong with raw, unsalted nuts. If opting for roasted nuts, select the unsalted and dry-roasted variety. You’ll ensure that you’re getting a healthy, convenient, high fiber, and high protein food that’s loaded with healthy fats.