2

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Raw food = live, Cooked food = dead - Nonsense or Truth?

Answered on September 12, 2014
Created July 01, 2013 at 4:46 PM

Social network sites are awash with people supporting the notion that raw food is alive & our bodies thrive on it but cooked food is dead & has many many negative effects on the body, it's put forward by many of the proponents as a gospel truth of nutrition

I eat some raw foods everyday, eggs, a big raw veggie salad with some cooked meat & cheese, It's lovely & refreshing even if its a 1500kcal salad, but intuitively I still think the whole theory of raw food is ignorant as cooked food can feel super nourishing, for example broth is the most heated thing I eat and is probably more nourishing than most raw foods I could possibly eat, apart from maybe raw liver

I don't know much of the science behind it all but there's the the enzyme argument, and something I read recently said that your stomach acid is so strong that no enzymes in raw food make any difference at all to your digestion, the only part that makes sense is the measurable loss of nutrients in heated food, but of course the possible increased bioavailability of cooked food nutrients comes into play here aswell

Is there anywhere that has some good unbiased information on all this?

Medium avatar

(0)

on February 16, 2014
at 04:31 PM

www.enzymestuff.com is one of the better sites... MR PALEO

194d8e8140425057fe06202e1e5822a7

(3979)

on July 02, 2013
at 01:43 AM

I prefer my food dead, personally. It's my life now. Not theirs.

Medium avatar

(10611)

on July 02, 2013
at 12:04 AM

Can I have some lectins and phytic acids in my magic sauce?

Medium avatar

(10611)

on July 02, 2013
at 12:02 AM

Raw foodism is a postmodern phenomena dependent on Whole Foods and refrigeration.

Medium avatar

(10611)

on July 01, 2013
at 11:59 PM

I know the tuna in the can had thick tasty muscles and that's good enough.

3d58b5fb4f9780e2f47d4dcc53338a5a

(2771)

on July 01, 2013
at 05:40 PM

Love the javascript comparison. Having big muscles isn't the problem. Having them covered in fat with no definition is an issue.

3d58b5fb4f9780e2f47d4dcc53338a5a

(2771)

on July 01, 2013
at 05:38 PM

Plus one for "Magic Sauce!"

Ebb10603524dd22621c1155dd7ddf106

(19150)

on July 01, 2013
at 04:58 PM

I'm am 100% positive you don't know any carnivores unless you have a pet shark -- omnivores != carnivores.

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12 Answers

13
Ebb10603524dd22621c1155dd7ddf106

(19150)

on July 01, 2013
at 05:10 PM

A true statement would be that cooked food is simply somewhat less enzymatically reactive than raw food. Somewhat.

At 114-120??F, proteins/enzymes denature, before renaturing when cooled (i.e. edible temperatures). A slab of steak doesn't denature into a pile of mush -- only some of it's proteins don't renature. At the other end is an egg -- it's an example of protein that is (for the most part) completely denatured from it's original form.

With plant food, there are trace proteins that woo-science types love to go on about ("oooooh, phytonutrients" - even though this just means "chemicals from plants" and not "magic sauce"). However, if these nutrients only exist in trace amounts, if you cook the plant, you may be a) denaturing proteins that don't renature correctly or b) simply not getting the maximum about of these proteins when most but not all of them renature.

Enzymes are just proteins that act as specific chemical "keys" that alter other molecules; they are also not "magic sauce", even though the "enzyme argument" for pro raw food is used a lot.

My solution to this non-debate: eat both cooked and raw food. :-)

3d58b5fb4f9780e2f47d4dcc53338a5a

(2771)

on July 01, 2013
at 05:38 PM

Plus one for "Magic Sauce!"

Medium avatar

(10611)

on July 02, 2013
at 12:04 AM

Can I have some lectins and phytic acids in my magic sauce?

8
Cb9a270955e2c277a02c4a4b5dad10b5

(10989)

on July 01, 2013
at 05:29 PM

Raw food = nonsense. Cooked food gives something like 20-50% more calories than its' raw equivalent. Cooked food allows for us to have bigger brains and smaller guts (expensive tissue hypothesis). And cooked food tastes better for a reason, ... Because it IS better for us, it is more easily assimilated.

Medium avatar

(10611)

on July 02, 2013
at 12:02 AM

Raw foodism is a postmodern phenomena dependent on Whole Foods and refrigeration.

6
3ce6a0d24be025e2f2af534545bdd1d7

(26217)

on July 01, 2013
at 05:25 PM

There is a benefit to cooking veggies. Vegetables, especially those with think fibrous cell walls cannot be fully digested in our intestines (like tomatoes, carrots, asparagus, spinach, potatoes, etc.) thus preventing us from digesting many of the nutrients therein.

5
089dd41b18fbb95ebb5347cded708d98

(5635)

on July 01, 2013
at 05:39 PM

I was diagnosed with ulcerative colitis after my three year stint as a raw vegan. I cannot support cooked food enough now! Raw veggies rip me apart if i eat them. My nutrition deficiencies have improved dramatically following a cooked paleo diet. Its not to say i dont crave a salad sometimes. I just dont eat it and put my body before my cravings.

4
67871ef2326f29da48f1522827fc0f80

(704)

on July 01, 2013
at 05:26 PM

For those of us with autoimmune, raw foods can equal death or wishing we were.

Cooking, peeling, fermenting can help those with autoimmune eat foods we normally have no hope of digesting. I still can't digest some foods, even cooked and peeled!

Also, bear in mind, some foods' nutrients are greater after being cooked, like tomatoes.

I believe raw/fermented cabbage (sauerkraut) is healthier for you can cooked sauerkraut or cabbage but I'll enjoy any of them you plop down. The raw/fermented version is going to provide some lovely probiotics, too.

1
68655ec9711d207d69a63ebf96b37573

on September 07, 2013
at 12:44 AM

IMO it's bollocks. Any enzymes in raw foods are going to be ripped to shreds by stomach acid pretty quickly

Both eating meat AND cooking contributed to brain evolution because cooks foods (especially starchy tubers) give you more energy than the equivalent raw food.

Some vitamins e.g. vitamin C do get reduced by cooking so no need to boil your broccoli til it's a soggy mess, though.

Dairy, however, I prefer raw. Unless it's hallumi because, nuuh, hallumi.

Salmon is also great raw is it means that none of the fragile unsaturated omega 3s get oxidised. Same with olive oil, avocado oil etc.

Apparently I'm contradicting myself today

1
Cdf7f035eb9a38585e082c30b2323703

on July 02, 2013
at 05:27 PM

I saw this statement on the other website. I think it's rather stupid to claim this. Cooked food is much better for our bodies.

1
Medium avatar

(10611)

on July 01, 2013
at 11:57 PM

Check this out.

http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/m/pubmed/16177198/

The downside to rawism is low HDL and B12. The upside is low TG's and LDL. I think the downsides outweigh the upsides, and most paleos have low TG's anyway.

0
Medium avatar

on February 16, 2014
at 04:30 PM

www.enzymestuff.com is one of the better sites... MR PALEO

0
2564c814ad9931c834ae092e1ef069fb

on July 02, 2013
at 10:49 PM

For 6 months I've been eating probiotics and a version of the GAPS and autoimmune paleo diet. The longer I eat it and the more I take probiotics the more I have come to believe that the premise is true, that cooked food is dead and raw food is alive. I think that more vitamins are destroyed when you cook food than people realize, based on my own experiences and feelings of eating mostly cooked food.

However, I think the 'dead food' does have its place. I can't really say that all food should be eaten raw, especially vegetables, which can be toxic raw. Also when you cook food, boil, bake, slow cook, etc, you change the proteins in it, liberate amino acids, which is what our species evolved doing.

I wouldn't eat an all raw diet, but I had tried an all cooked diet (a version of the GAPS intro) and I found it horrible. The worst part was I couldn't figure out what was going wrong. One day I just ate a salad and felt refreshed. I just started craving fresh things from then on.

There's no need for 'raw food diets' or 'cooked food diets.' Our species has eaten both since we evolved.

0
3b4c3e7b3ed90838fb8ea2c53f8d59fb

on July 01, 2013
at 04:55 PM

Hi there,

This question isn't black or white. Like most things, there are nuances involved. While increasing raw foods are an extremely healthy option to anyone's diet, heating foods can also elevate the nutritional value of said raw foods due to chemical reactions that take place. The chemsitry and enzyme structures are altered.

I know raw foodists. Most of them are very slender but look decades younger than their age. While I personally don't subscribe to the philosophy, what works for some people may not work for you. I also know die hard carnivores, armed with thick slabs of muscles, that could certainly use more raw foods.

Medium avatar

(10611)

on July 01, 2013
at 11:59 PM

I know the tuna in the can had thick tasty muscles and that's good enough.

3d58b5fb4f9780e2f47d4dcc53338a5a

(2771)

on July 01, 2013
at 05:40 PM

Love the javascript comparison. Having big muscles isn't the problem. Having them covered in fat with no definition is an issue.

Ebb10603524dd22621c1155dd7ddf106

(19150)

on July 01, 2013
at 04:58 PM

I'm am 100% positive you don't know any carnivores unless you have a pet shark -- omnivores != carnivores.

-1
77877f762c40637911396daa19b53094

(78467)

on July 02, 2013
at 06:14 PM

[EDIT: haters gonna hate]

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