30 Days Raw for Queensland – Summary

This entry is part 18 of 19 in the series Raw Food Trial

istock-000002359507xsmall.jpgWell, the 30 days is gone already.  Now comes the really fun part of working out how much I’ll be adapting my pre-trial Lifestyle to include the new habits I’ve formed…

Some things, I think, are going to have to change, no matter whether I want them to or not.  I was in town for lunch after getting my blood tests done yesterday, and the best lunch I could find was a crepe and salad.  So I had a mini-crepe (spinach & cheese) with my salad.  I tell you what, when I took a piece of that crepe onto my fork, not only did it not resemble anything edible to me, it didn’t actually taste like food!  I kept going back to the salad, and ended up thinking I would’ve been much better off just buying 2 salads and forgetting the crepe.  Not to mention that I couldn’t handle it hot.  Blowing on your food doesn’t actually cool it down all that quickly, have you noticed?

There was something similar in the last week when I visited the supermarket.  I was walking past all these bright displays that once would have been ‘bee to honey’ type stuff before, and it didn’t draw me at all.  I’d look at them and think ‘pretty’ but I just wouldn’t be thinking of them as actual food.  It’s amazing how full the supermarket is with stuff that bears little or no resemblance to the actual fuels we work on, but which we’ve been trained to put down our throats thinking it’s nourishment.  Thinking about it, we’ll even take the raw, natural stuff we’re designed to eat and process the daylights out of it before we think of letting it near our mouths.  I admit it, I was guilty too.   Strange, isn’t it?

Anyway, in the last week I had a bit of a side effect I should probably mention here too.  Mid-cycle, I started my period up again, as my body started pushing out what looked like hadn’t been cleared from at least the last 2 cycles.  This is something that’s happened to me occasionally over the last 6 years, and the last female doctor I saw explained that anything affecting the hormone levels can set it off.  Since I’m up to date with pap smears etc I wasn’t too worried, (time enough to check it out when I go in for my follow up with the blood test results) and I suspect the bf was spot on in thinking it might have been diet related.  I’ve not been eating dairy.  I used to eat lots of it.  I’ve also not been eating tofu, although I didn’t used to eat as much of that.  Anything soy has an effect on estrogen levels.  No doubt dropping both of those out of the intake has changed the level of hormones floating around in my system significantly…  In any case, the last week saw my weight loss etc rebound up a bit again.  I don’t mind.  My trousers are still lovely and loose, and since I’m not going to drop raw food entirely (I just have to work out how much I can incorporate into my routine without too many dramas) I expect it will keep dropping.  Especially now that, with the diet trial over, I’m able to pick up my exercise routines again.  Woo hoo!  Love that part.

Besides that, the weight loss definitely slowed after the first week, when I was basing my menu on that raw Sunfood Diet.  It even rebounded back up while I was experimenting with ‘raw recipes’ and making things like lasagne.  I’ve tentatively come to the conclusion that the closer to it’s natural form your food is, the better the benefits.  I’m looking forward to getting hold of the book and playing with some of the other menus in it!  Meanwhile, I’m sticking with my fruit breakfasts (you can’t beat how easy it is to grab to eat on the go) and trying for larger and larger salads with my lunch.  I suspect from what I’ve been feeling as I’ve eaten these that the fruit is great for energy and helping you go, but the greens and salad stuff is fantastic for cleaning up and flushing out the insides.   For me, anyway.  I suspect (although I haven’t tested it out yet) that the fats part of the sunfood triangle is good for helping your body generate heat and warmth during colder months, (most people get warmth from digestion), as well as lubricating the joints – I definitely noticed that when I started adding raw nuts in, the knees stopped creaking.

So, although I haven’t been back to the doctor for his weigh in yet (I’ve only just got the blood test results back, surprisingly fast considering they warned me it could be up to 6 weeks), here’s what my home scale tells me I achieved over the month.

Pre-Start Week 1 Week 2 Week 3 Week 4 Change
Weight 146.0kg 141.0kg 140.9kg 138.1kg 139.1kg – 6.9kg
Body Fat 47.4% 47.0% 46.7% 46.6% 46.8% – 0.6%
Hydration 38.4% 38.7% 38.9% 39.0% 38.8% + 0.4%
Basal Rate 2158 2107 2106 2079 2089 – 69cal
Muscle Mass 28.3% 28.4% 28.5% 28.5% 28.5% + 0.2
BMI 55.1 53.1 53.0 52.0 52.4 – 2.7

Now for the cholesterol changes.  Remember, this is over a MONTH only. (I had to do some fast talking to get the referral, they don’t like sending you for it in less than 3 months…)

_ Pre-start ‘Normal’ After Change Comments
Weight 146kg 67kg (chart) 139.1kg -6.9kg Nice loss for a month without any exercise, don’t you think?
Cholesterol (total) 7.09 (high) 2.30-5.50 6.50 -0.59 Getting closer to ‘normal’
Cholesterol ratio 3.9 0-4.5 3.4 -0.5 I know it dropped, I just don’t know if that’s good or bad.  Anyone?
Triglycerides 1.53 0-2.0 2.17 +0.64 This one went up a bit, and now it’s considered high.
HDL 1.8 1.0-3.0 1.89 +0.09 This one is supposed to protect you from heart disease.  It went up.  🙂
LDL (bad one) 4.6 (high) 0-3.5 3.6 -1.0 The one I was trying to get down – and look how close I am to the recommended range already!
B12 202 pmol/L >144 ? ? Although I asked the doctor for the same tests as last time, they obviously weren’t all on the request form.  They didn’t take as much blood, either.  Means I can’t be sure on these, but you can bet I’ll be asking for them at the 3 month checkup…
Iron 11.5 umol/L 8.8-27.0 ? ?
Red cell folate 2146 >776 ? ?
Thyroid TSH 0.35 mU/L 0.30-5.0 ? ?

All in all, I felt fantastic for the change in diet, and would heartily recommend checking it out for yourself, but if you live outside a city it can be surprisingly difficult to manage.  My garbage was also distinctly heavier with all the rinds, capsicum seeds etc that I was throwing out, although I didn’t fill the garbage bag up nearly as often – one medium bag a week instead of two-three.  I also felt the lack of a car in not being able to go to markets & the like, which would have made it a lot easier.

The blood tests seem to bear out that it did me good, and I’ll be keeping as much of it in my routine as possible, although I will go back to a less strict version and let myself find the balance that works long term for me.  The sneaking suspicion, though, is that over time I’ll end up going further and further down this track anyway.  I just felt so darn good!

PS A big THANK YOU to everyone who pledged to sponsor me.  We raised over $300 towards the Disaster Relief fund.  For any of you that were thinking of it but didn’t get around to contacting me, I may be finished my 30 day raw trial, but you can still visit the Premiers Disaster Relief Appeal and donate to help them out…

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