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Tuesday, May 21, 2024
Fresh fruits, vegetables and nuts/seeds are the staples of any type of raw vegan diet. 

Fresh fruits, vegetables and nuts/seeds are the staples of any type of raw vegan diet. 

Raw vegan in college

Imagine a lifestyle where you could eat as much as you want while experiencing a healthy weight, clear skin, increased energy and more. It may seem like a fantasy, but adapting a new vegan lifestyle has made all these things and more a reality for me.

A raw vegan diet is composed of three groups: fruits, veggies and nuts/seeds. That means that everything I eat is unrefined and fresh.

When eating a whole foods, plant-based diet it is vitally important you are eating in abundance. In the beginning, I kept track of the food that I was eating just to make sure that I was getting all of the nutrients that I needed in order to maintain a healthy lifestyle.

After trial and error, I now follow a “low-fat, raw vegan diet,” so my calories are preferably 80 percent from simple carbohydrates, 10 percent from protein and 10 percent from fat. I feel my best when I eat roughly around this ratio, but the portions can vary from person to person.

Many might think I struggle with cravings because of a strictly raw diet, but this idea has proved entirely false.

In the beginning, during the detox phase, I had some cravings. It has been proven that it takes approximately 21 days to develop a new habit, so after about three weeks I was basically devoid of any cravings at all. My detox phase only lasted about two weeks.

Ever since then, I have not craved any processed foods or animal products. Over time, I created various alternatives that kicked any cravings I had early on—delicious and healthy treats like “nice cream,” Bliss Bites and “zoodles” are some staples in my diet to name a few.

I love to change it up on a daily basis but an example of a day in my life would start off with a large meal of fruit in the morning such as half of a melon, a couple of apples/bananas or my signature “raw cereal.”

I love to snack, so in between lunch and dinner I usually have a few pieces of fruit and vegetables. For lunch, I like to have something a little more savory like a large salad and a side of fruit with a handful of nuts or seeds.

In between lunch and dinner I like to have a large smoothie that consists of a few bananas, frozen fruit and spinach, or a smoothie bowl with similar ingredients—just a thicker consistency!

For dinner, I have a meal that is similar to lunch—I begin with fruit and then a large salad topped with some avocado, tossed with a raw dressing and lots of veggies or more creative raw “burritos.”

The most significant change in my life from adopting this lifestyle has been in the physical and mental aspects of my life.

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Not only do I have more mental clarity, but my energy levels have increased, my complexion is clearer and the sclera of my eyes is much whiter.

Growing up, I would get sick quite often and it would take me a while to fully recover. Now, my immune system is stronger than ever and I bounce back from a cold in just a few days.

I have more energy to get up and move my body whether it’s a jog on the treadmill, a yoga class or a bike ride down the Lakeshore path.

When I came upon this lifestyle over a year ago, I may have agreed with those that argue raw veganism is extreme.

Now, I can’t imagine turning back and eating a “conventional” diet. My energy levels are higher, my sweet tooth is always satisfied, my skin and eyes are clearer and my overall quality of life has changed in the best way possible.

I am so grateful for what raw foods have done for me and I hope I can inspire hesitant college students to incorporate more food from the Earth into an everyday diet as well.

While being in college full-time, I have found this way of eating to be extremely adaptable and affordable with a little effort and a lot of passion for being healthy.

If you are interested in learning more about eating raw vegan, you can check out my social media accounts (Raw in College) or contact me with questions at!

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