“Veganism which results in a decreased demand for animal products, is much more than a matter of diet, lifestyle, or consumer choice. It is a personal commitment to nonviolence and the abolition of exploitation.” Gary L. Franclone
Veganism has many stigmas, not the least of which being that vegans can’t build muscle. Thanks to the increasing popularity of a growing number of vegan athletes, that stigma is falling by the wayside. However, as many stigmas as there are about veganism, raw veganism is even less understood.
Very few people understand raw veganism and even less have any idea how to build muscle on a raw vegan diet. With this article, it is my intent to show that not only is it possible to build muscle on a raw vegan diet, it’s also fairly simple.
First, let’s talk a little bit about why someone would want to go raw. Plant based foods have a higher amount of energy in them than the dead flesh of animals and are loaded with nutrients like fiber, antioxidants, vitamins, and minerals.
When we cook our food, we are killing it and destroying some of the nutritional content. We all know this to some degree. That’s why we strive to eat as many raw fruits and veggies as possible. Going raw is just taking that to the next level.
It can be a bit intimidating though, especially when your goal is to build muscle, but allow me to show you why there’s no need to fret. With a bit of know how and a few simple tools, essentially anyone can build muscle as a raw vegan!
Tools You Will Need:
- A High Speed Blender. While these can be highly expensive, there are some great options in the 70 to 100 dollar range.
- A Dehydrator. You can get these for as low as 30 dollars or so, but if you can, I recommend getting a bigger one. It’s much more convenient.
- A Spiralizer. These are super cheap. Around 10 dollars or so.
That’s it. Those are your basic tools. If you can’t get them all at once, simply get each one as you are able. The high speed blender is for making smoothies, raw nut butters, fresh juices, etc.
The dehydrator is for cooking your food at 118 degrees Farenheit or less. When you cook food above 118 degrees you kill the enzymes in it. Having a dehydrator also allows you to make raw versions of many popular foods such as pizza, breads, burgers, and virtually anything else you can think of.
The spiralizer is for making noodles from things like zucchini, sweet potatoes, squash, cucumbers, and more. These three tools may not all be absolutely necessary, but they certainly make life more fun as a raw foodie.
Let’s talk about food. The foods you eat can vary depending on if you’re on a tight budget, or if you have plenty to spend on groceries. If you have an abundance of money(which you should be speaking into existence) you can get creative and try many different things, whereas, if you’re on a budget your staple foods are a bit limited.
Staple Foods For Those On A Budget:
- Bananas. Being cheap, filling, and nutritionally dense make bananas an obvious choice.
- Peanut Butter. Besides being delicious, peanut butter is cheap, high in protein, and packed with calories.
- Beans. Beans are super cheap, high in protein and fiber, and go with virtually anything. Instead of cooking them, sprout them. This dramatically increases the absorption of vitamins and minerals.
- Yams or sweet potatoes. Many people don’t know it, but you can actually eat these raw. These are fairly cheap, and they also offer variety as you can spiralize them or put them in the dehydrator and make them as crispy as you want!
- Nuts and seeds of all kinds. When you are on a budget, go for cheaper ones like peanuts, and if your budget permits, you can go for more decadent choices.
- Greens. These are some of the healthiest things you can eat, and you should aim for a pound of leafy greens each day. Don’t feel bad if you don’t get that much every day though. Simply aim for a pound and get as close as you can.
- Any fruits and veggies that go on sale. Sometimes you can catch a great deal and stock up on fruits and veggies that wouldn’t typically fit your budget.
- Spring water. Often overlooked, water is the most important thing we ingest. Every cell in our body needs to be well hydrated in order to function properly.
- Other fruits and veggies. This can include any fruits and veggies that fit your budget, and will allow you to have variety. Things like bell peppers of all colors, onions, cucumbers, zucchini and more give you distinct flavors that will take your meals to the next level.
- Wild Rice. This is the only rice that be eaten raw. Simply rinse it, put it in a mason jar with 3 parts water to 1 part rice, and throw it in your dehydrator.
- Quinoa. Quinoa, like beans, can be sprouted. It is high in protein and adds great texture to many dishes.
- Avocado. Avocados are loved by vegans everywhere, and for good reason. They go with virtually anything, taste great, and are loaded with calories and nutrients.
When you need a quick and simple meal, throw 5-10 bananas in your blender with some water or plant based milk and blend. Add any other fruit that you’d like to, such as berries, pineapple, mango, etc. A banana has about 100 calories, so 10 would give you about 1,000 calories.
Have 2 of these shakes a day and you can easily get 2,000 calories. That’s how easy it is to get sufficient calories on a raw food diet. When it comes to solid foods, you have infinite options.
I won’t go into recipes in the interest of saving time, but if you combine some of the foods listed above, you can make some simple and delicious meals.
For instance, a great raw meal for building muscle would be wild rice, sprouted beans of your choice, avocado, onion and bell pepper, seasoned up just right, with a kale salad on the side. YUM!
A great snack would be raw cacao nibs, berries, and nuts. Or chia seed pudding. All of these are Super simple to make and taste delicious. You can get as creative as you’d like, use your imagination.
Please note that some beans are toxic unless cooked. These beans should be avoided if you are raw: Lima beans, pinto beans, navy beans, and red kidney beans. There may be more, be sure to do a quick google search if you are unsure.
It really is as simple as that. I promise anyone can build muscle on a Raw vegan diet, even You! If you have been thinking about giving it a try, I hope this article will encourage you. With all the information available, it really is a wonderful time to be vegan! Until next time, that’s all folks.
All my love,