A raw vegan tomato sauce with olives, celery, spinachand walnuts on zucchini "pasta" noodles.
is a diet which combines veganism and rawfoodism. It excludes all food of animal origin, and all food cookedabove 48 degrees Celsius (118 degrees Fahrenheit). A raw vegandiet includes raw vegetables and fruits, nuts and nut pastes, grainand legume sprouts, seeds, plant oils, sea vegetables, herbs, andfresh juices. There are many different versions of the diet,including fruitarianism, juicearianism, and sproutarianism.Sometimes the definition of a raw vegan diet is loosened toinclude vegan diets with at least 75% raw foods.
In addition to the ethics of eating meat, dairy, eggs and honey, raw vegans may be motivated by:
Some raw vegans believe that cooking foods destroys the complex balance of micronutrients. They may also believethat, in the cooking process, dangerous chemicals are produced by the heat interaction with fat, protein, andcarbohydrates. Often, based on their energy levels and how a person feels when eating a raw diet, individuals believeit is a healthier diet. Although there is extensive evidence that there are health benefits to consuming raw vegetables,the evidence for health benefits of a raw vegan diet are purely anecdotal. There is also no body of scientific evidenceto support the claims that raw food is healthier than cooked food. Cooking food makes digestion much easier on thedigestive tract
and there is evidence that the additional simple carbohydrates gained as a result are likely to haveassisted in the advanced development of the human brain.
Many people are raw vegans because they are concerned about the environmental impact of their diets. The use of wood or fossil fuels for cooking is harmful to the environment in that greenhouse gases and other pollutants areproduced. Not cooking food, however, has environmental consequences of its own in that raw food spoils morereadily than cooked food. If food is allowed to spoil, the microorganisms that compost the food produce methane, agreenhouse gas that is far more harmful to the environment than the carbon dioxide and carbon monoxide producedby burning wood or fossil fuels. A raw vegan must take great care not to waste food in order to truly avoid making anegative environmental impact. The most readily available solution to this problem is the use of solar cooking, whichproduces no greenhouse gases or other pollutants but of course results in cooked food, which raw vegans findunsatisfactory. Some scientists have suggested that solar refrigeration may some day provide the negligibleenvironmental impact that raw vegans so desire, but point out that chlorofluorocarbon compounds necessary atpresent for effective refrigeration are damaging to the earth's ozone layer.