A fresh start

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Are you giving your body a raw deal?

The celebs are doing it; Madonna, Gwyneth Paltrow, Pierce Brosnan, Sting and Cher, are just a few of the famous faces who have jumped on the raw food bandwagon.

Of course eating raw food and drinking fresh fruit and vegetable juice is not confined to celebrities, and the trend is growing in popularity among Abu Dhabi residents.

Sinead Rose co-founded meetup group Raw-Yoga Abu Dhabi, to share her passion for raw food.

“Raw-Yoga is based on a simple idea that good health and happiness can be achieved through a balanced lifestyle – eating healthily and exercising regularly,” said Rose.

The meetup members practise yoga, followed by raw food preparation and tasting sessions.

“The benefits of raw food are countless – it improves your overall health, energy and outlook on life. When you consume a plant-based diet your body thanks you for it.

“We need to remember that everything we eat becomes a part of us. So if we eat foods high in nutrients, vitamins and minerals we will receive the benefits.

“Eating raw food does not mean you have to spend days dehydrating or preparing snacks. Fresh fruit is one of the most accessible and portable raw food snack available,” Rose added.

For more information visit: www.meetup.com/Raw-Yoga/

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Another option for those keen to try a raw food diet, is the Abu Dhabi Golf Club workshops which cover the basics; how to shop for raw food, preparing meals, and how to fit raw food into your lifestyle.

“The transition to raw food is not easy,” says Izzy Boudraa, health and nutrition manager. “I recommend people start very slowly by doing 50 percent raw and 50 percent cooked, then increasing your raw consumption to 70 percent. It will take time and organisation until you feel at ease with your new lifestyle.”

Boudraa says that while it takes time to shop for fresh food and establish a new routine, the benefits are worth the extra effort.

“You will feel lighter, full of energy, you will naturally lose weight, sleep better, have increased mental awareness, and you can eat as often as you like.”

For more information visit: www.adgolfclub.com or call: 02 558 8990.

Or if you want to get started today, these two website have straightforward recipes perfect for beginners: www.therawtarian.com and www.rawmazing.com 

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Smooth the way

If you don’t like the idea of eating raw vegetables, juicing is a popular alternative.

To get started buy a juicer and blender, then download some recipes or buy a book; UK author Jason Vale, otherwise known as ‘The Juice Master’ is considered to be an expert on the matter, and his books are readily available throughout the capital.

Mira Naaman co-owner of Nectar juice bar in the Bodytree studio advises against drinking shop bought juice.

“Packaged juice often have a large amount of preservatives to ensure a long shelf life at the supermarket,” said Naaman. “Those additives and the high levels of sugars, make it so that you are actually drinking an unhealthy beverage under the illusion of drinking a healthy one.

“Our juices made with fresh fruits and vegetables are packed with nutrients such as iron, vitamin C and potassium and are a great way to get good ingredients into your diet easily.

“Smoothies tend to be slightly more filling, as they sometimes contain daily or dairy alternatives, and can be used as a meal on the go, or as a bridge between meals,” Naaman added.

She recommends drinking freshly made juice immediately or within a few hours if it’s kept refrigerated, and it should not be kept for more than ten hours.

Catriona Doherty
Posted in Features, Health and wellbeing, Lifestyle | Leave a comment

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