In today’s society, being a successful active, busy, woman, yet maintaining optimal health is quite difficult. As women, we are constantly trying to find the latest diet trend or fad that will help us lose weight quickly, yet really work in the long term. Whether you are a young woman just entering your twenties, or experiencing later stages of life as a woman, it is agreed that we want to feel good about our bodies- feeling energetic and healthy. We want to feel good about the foods that we are putting into our bodies. We want to treat our bodies as temples. Opting to choose the path of a raw food lifestyle as a woman has shown that no matter what age you may be, you will be mentally and physically capable of experiencing life to its fullest, putting your health as high priority.
So how does a raw food diet really affect women in so many different ways? How do we know as women that we are putting our trust in a lifestyle that is beneficial for us now and healthy in the long term?
In her personal experience, Karen Ranzi found that when transitioning to a fully raw lifestyle twenty-three years ago in 1994 that her monthly cycle went from an uncomfortable and heavy menstruation to one that was joyful and light. Her menopause was uneventful and the years living happily on raw food have made it easy to move from her 40s to 50s to 60s with a vibrance and zest for life. The energy she has maintained over two decades is itself worth staying with a fully raw food lifestyle. Karen also loves wearing clothes that she has maintained since college days when she was in her 20’s.
Karen has found over the years that eating an abundance of fresh local leafy greens has been most beneficial to her well-being as well as fresh fruit and small amounts of nuts and seeds. Sprouting of broccoli sprouts, mung beans, and sunflower greens were some of the best additions to Karen’s raw food lifestyle over the years.
Writer for The Huffington Post, Victoria Moran, testified in one of her articles that she was tired of jumping from diet to diet, calling it an “un-merry merry-go-round”. She wanted a fresh, clean change that she could apply to her life, even as a mother approaching later stages of her life. “The first thing I noticed after making the switch was how happy I felt.” says Moran. “People used to say, ‘How are you?’ and I’d say, ‘Okay.’ That was accurate. I was perfectly okay. Now I’m more apt to say ‘Fabulous!’ and mean that. Happiness came even before energy and strength and clarity, but those have come, too.” says Victoria on her switch to a high raw food lifestyle. The lifestyle change empowered Victoria and she feels more confident than ever before.
The raw food lifestyle is applicable for women of any age. A perfect example of a woman in later stages of life, using the raw plant based diet to contribute to her health and success, is Karyn Calabrese. Karyn is in her later 60’s, and has been a raw vegan for over 40 years. Karyn chose to make the switch to raw because she found that specifically the women in her family died at a very young age. Karyn’s mom died at 48, and her grandmother died at 60. Karyn used this as motivation to make sure she was living the cleanest lifestyle she could to experience life to its fullest. Karyn states that “even when I eat the smallest bit of cooked food, I see changes in how I look and feel afterwards.” She never gets bored with a raw vegan diet, and she has also taken up the hobby of growing her own sprouts. “Before I went vegan, I had every allergy known to man, terrible skin, bloating, constipation and overall poor digestion. When I changed my eating habits and detoxed, they all went away.”, says Karyn. Calabrese credits the raw vegan lifestyle to her anti-aging and strong vitality. She has avoided going grey so far, and has minimal to no wrinkles. She attributes it all to being a raw vegan.
The power of embracing a raw plant food lifestyle as a woman has a long list of benefits, both physical and mental. Studies have shown that eating raw contributes to menopause being less difficult and not as long each month for women when they are raw. Tonya, founder of “Beautiful on Raw”, an online raw food blog, states that she is in her 50s and still has not experienced menopause. She also says that her periods are always regular and never too heavy. She is one of many women who testify to having shorter and lighter menstruation cycles on a raw plant based diet. “After I went raw my menstruation cramps virtually disappeared,” says Tonya. Practicing a raw lifestyle has many other benefits for women as well exclaims Tonya, “When women eat mostly raw vegan foods, hot flashes, irritability, breast tenderness, dryness, painful intercourse, water retention, and sleeping disorders all disappear or never start. My menopause was totally uneventful. No symptoms at all!” she says.
Nail and hair growth as well as strength are also common for raw women. Being raw has also been proven to keep skin vibrant and firm. “There is no need for botox or cellulite removal when following a raw regimen,” says Tonya. These luxurious benefits come naturally when putting the right foods into your body. You can look and feel like an a-list celebrity, without having to spend thousands of dollars. Super star Beyonce Knowles decided to join the raw vegan lifestyle in 2015. She says it is the only diet that kept her at her lowest weight, without the constant struggle. Your body is a temple and you get back what you give.
Women who are constantly filling their bodies with unnatural hormones and animal foods unfortunately do not get to experience all of these positive benefits from the plant based raw food lifestyle. Some problems that women are experiencing in today’s society can easily be solved or at least managed when they start shifting to a raw mindset. Physically and emotionally, at any age, a woman will experience a plentiful list of benefits that only the raw plant based lifestyle holds.
Written by Jacqueline Teschon, Ramapo College Intern with Karen Ranzi, M.A.