Going into the topic of How Many Meals Should I Eat In a Day on a Raw Food Diet with common sense and nearly 20 years as a raw food vegan and 13+ years of experience coaching people to success.
If you are relatively new to the low-fat raw vegan diet, say days weeks, or even a few years in, you may be hearing contradicting opinions and are asking yourself how many meals should I eat in a day. Now when I say “Best” that is relative to getting all of the calories and nutrients you need as well as being able to digest and just as importantly enjoy your meals wholeheartedly. There is no “right” or “wrong” way, instead, there is a more efficient and or streamlined way of looking at this so as to suit your needs in the moment. All too often people speak from where they are as if what they do is the best for everyone, you may even watch me on a video and see me eat two giant meals a day thinking that must be the way to success! You may watch other people who talk about grazing and yet others swear by one meal a day or calorie restriction. I am here to set this all straight and bring some common sense and experience to this topic.
As an aside, if you don’t know me by now I have been studying nutrition and holistic health since 1999, received my designation RHN – Registered Holistic Nutritionist in 2004, and have been a 100% raw foodist since the spring of 2004. In 2009 I created The Raw Advantage and have been at it full time fulfilling my life mission and goal to provide simple and effective information to help make this lifestyle as easy and straightforward as possible. With that, I am sharing my personal experience as well as that of those who came before me and have decades on the raw food diet, many of which I am blessed to consider close personal friends.
I remember when I first started the lifestyle I found that I needed to eat at least 3-5 meals a day to get my caloric needs covered, even then I felt as if I was eating all day long. As time went on my digestion grew stronger, I was not only able to eat bigger meals, 2-3 meals a day, but also was able to eat them faster with better digestion. This process took 3-5 years and wasn’t done with any rush or perceived need, instead simply a natural progression. Take this as an example of following your body’s needs and abilities in the moment, listening and following enjoyment and ease pays off in spades.
Some simple tips to streamline this process…
- Eat meals instead of snacks when hungry till full.
- Follow proper food combining / sequential eating if you are mixing foods.
- Start with fruit and eat right between all you can and all you enjoy, if you think you could have another bite have 1-2 more.
- Beware of forcing food or eating from the mind as opposed to eating from the body, simply meaning once you stop enjoying your meal stop eating it.
- Get acquainted with true hunger, watch this video for more info on this topic.
- Repeat this as many times a day as it takes to be fully satiated.
- Accompany any fruit meal with greens and/or eat greens after your fruit meals. Generally, the biggest green meal/salad being as the last meal of the day.
With time and practice eating right between all you can and all you enjoy both your digestive capacity and digestive strength will go up, this leads you to eating larger meals less frequently and finding it easier to get in all your calories for the day. I also recommend becoming aware of your general caloric needs by using a tool such as Fitday.com or Chronometer.com so that you a ballpark your intake on any given day or meal. While some people tend to prefer grazing and smaller meals, in terms of digestion, food combining, and practicality it is to one’s benefit to learn how to eat larger meals less often. When doing so one not only is left with more hours in the day between meals and less of a need to carry food around with them at all times but this habit also creates more space between meals for more efficient elimination and detoxification.
In addition to this topic, you may have read or heard people say that you need to consume 1-2 lbs of organic young and tender leafy greens per day for success. As a generality over the long term, this is really good advice, that said many people starting this way of eating do not have the digestive strength (HCL) to actually digest that much greens and also may be having a hard time finding the space with the quantity of fruit they are eating to meet their caloric needs. Due to these reasons what experience and education have shown as being helpful is to start with less, perhaps .5 – 1 lb of greens either spread out between all meals or between two meals. This way you’re not overburdening your digestion and are encouraging the gradual increase of HCL to strengthen your digestion. Over the first few weeks months and years of the raw food lifestyle slowly increase the quantity of greens, always remembering to chew well even if they are blended up into a green smoothie.
As Ghandi wisely said, “Chew your drink and drink your food”.
Some other methods to increase the quantity of greens in your diet without overburdening your digestive system is to
- Start your day with Fresh Made Celery Juice, 1 full bunch after some light movement and water. This boosts HCL production and can actually help you get up to 1 lb of greens in early in your day. You can also choose to blend the celery juice with bananas or another fruit to make a sweet and savory meal.
- Chew fresh grass that you know has no sprays or fertilizers on it, just remember to spit out the pulp. Check out my video on “Unlimited Green Juice” here 🙂
- Make more green smoothies and stews, get really simple well food combined recipes in my “101 Frickin Rawsome Recipes” and “50 More Frickin Rawsome Recipes” ebooks available here 🙂
- Include a quality green powder in your diet such as Barley Grass Juice Powder for increased mineral density and less digestive demand.
I really hope all of this helps you find ease in the subject of how many meals you need to eat in a day on the raw food diet. In summary, there is no right or wrong amount, typically when one starts with the raw food lifestyle they need to eat more meals that are smaller in size, with time and practice of eating when hungry till full, complete abundance and no restriction, right between all you can and all you enjoy, your digestive capacity and strength will increase and bring many benefits. If you are interested in learning more about Barley Grass Juice powder click the links below, I have tried many brands and this is by far the best and also at the best deal I could find. I use it regularly in my lifestyle as I have found a ton of benefits from doing so both in health, cost, and ease of being assured I am getting everything I need, especially when traveling.
Remember I am always available to help you fine-tune this lifestyle to your specific situation and needs via a personal consultation available by donation. The above information is of course a generalization and it is important to consider each person’s history and personal needs before assuming anything.
If you are interested in connecting with me for a personalized consultation Click Here to learn a ton more 🙂
Wishing you Much
Wishing You Much