Are There Different Styles of Raw Foods? also,any advice on Skin Problems

In a message dated 2/24/02 8:48:34 AM, AJ writes:

Dear Rhio,

I just found your site after attempting to prepare raw food for the first time, and I was hoping you might be able to give me some advice. Are there differences styles of raw foods? I ask because I was inspired to get into this after eating at Quintessence and I couldn't believe how wonderful the food was… however, I recently got juliano's cookbook as a gift and tried to make some recipes from there but didn't really like them. What do you think? Was I just making them wrong? Also, I tried to sprout black beans and they wouldn't sprout and after 4 days they wound up smelling funny so i threw them away. Did i do something wrong? I would appreciate any thoughts you have on the subjects!

Thank you,

AJ writes:

Dear AJ,

I'm so glad that you found Quintessence and that their delicious food has inspired and motivated you to move forward into the raw food cuisine and lifestyle.

There are as many different styles of making raw and living foods as there are of making cooked foods. Basically the only difference in preparing raw vs. cooked cuisine is that in raw we look for methods of preparation that do not involve heat, so as to preserve the "life" in the food. Of course, as all long term raw food enthusiasts know, this is a HUGE difference in terms of the healing properties of the food.

Juliano is a wonderfully inspiring raw food chef and his book is excellent. Having had a restaurant, many (not all) of Juliano's recipes are based on using a wide variety of ingredients available all at the same time. For a newcomer, perhaps some of Juliano's recipes may be too involved and require too many ingredients. I would start out with simpler recipes in the beginning and then work yourself up to the more complicated ones. For example, Juliano's Butternut Squash Soup is easy and very delicious. Look through his book again and this time try some of the recipes with fewer ingredients. Also, we all have individual tastes in food, so it could be that you made the recipes correctly but just didn't care for the flavor. What recipes did you try to make from Juliano's book?

Other books with recipes utilizing fewer ingredients are Nomi Shannon's The Raw Gourmet and of course, my own book, Hooked on Raw.

When sprouting beans (and seeds) you have to be sure and get them very fresh. This one point accounts for the largest failure rate in sprouting. It means looking to the source. You want to make sure that the beans are from this year's (or at least last year's) harvest. If you buy packaged beans, they are less likely to sprout for you. Find a supplier that sells in bulk and moves a lot of product.

Also, start with a simpler bean to sprout, like mung beans or lentils. Don't become frustrated. Remember you are learning a wonderful new skill that will serve you well into the future. You are also unlearning what we have all been taught to believe about food and its preparation. It's not easy, but with a little perseverance you will start to acquire a set of recipes that will be very satisfying to you.

In the city, Quintessence and High Vibe Health and Healing give classes on raw food preparation and sprouting techniques pretty regularly. When you actually see the food being prepared right in front of your eyes, it makes learning a whole lot easier.

Hope I have been of some help.

With Blessings and Peace,



Thank you so much for your feedback and wonderful info! Within the next couple weeks, I am going to buy your cookbook, it sounds amazing.

It is as frustrating as it is exciting learning this new world of information. I'm so used to cooking! But I feel it is right to change. I just turned 30 and i have had this sudden surge of skin problems and anxiety problems. breaking out, dry skin, soreness of skin. I thought that it must be a sign of something i'm doing wrong. even though i've been a vegan for the last year, i eat too many bad things… and don't really understand a lot about vitamins and minerals that i need. I'm excited to keep reading and learning though.

Your website is really fantastic! Well, thank you again very much for your help and if you have any last thoughts about good ways to learn about healing skin problems, I'd be grateful to hear them!


March 11, 2002

Dear AJ,

First, I must inform you that I am not a practitioner of any kind so please accept the following only as an exchange of information and ideas.

The skin is the body's largest organ of elimination. When the body is not handling elimination of toxins in an efficient manner through the liver, kidneys and lymph, then the overflow spills out onto the skin. It is really just your body functioning as best it can, under its current circumstances, to protect you.

After a period of time on predominantly raw foods, your skin should clear up.

Right now what I would do to clear it up quickly is:

1) Go on a juice fast consuming 1 to 2 quarts of raw organic juice per day for a few days or longer. If you've never done a juice fast before but would like to try, begin by going on a light diet of fruits and salad for a couple of weeks to a month first. This prepares your body for the deeper cleanse that is to come. Read some books on juice fasting.

2) Look into having some colonics.

3) Burdock Root tincture is a specific for clearing up the skin. Use the non alcoholic type. You can also use fresh burdock root made into a juice mixed with carrot juice.

Since you mention anxiety in relation to the skin problems, I would include lots of celery and leaf lettuce juice which are calming for the nerves.

You may not want to use them being vegan, but bee products of bee pollen (really flower pollen collected by the bees) propolis and royal jelly are high in naturally occurring B-complex vitamins, excellent for the adrenal glands. B-complex vitamins are a specific for the nerves. I include the propolis too because of the concept of using products as a whole. Wholeness instead of fragmentation. If you do use them, please be aware that some people cannot tolerate bee products, so start slowly.

Another thing to watch out for is chemicals — try to get all types of chemicals out of your personal environment. Eliminate all toxic cleaning products, laundry products, personal care products, rugs and furniture that outgas, products with Volatile Organic Compounds, etc. A good book that points out and describes these toxic products is A Cure for All Diseases or A Cure for All Cancers by Dr. Hulda Clark. I do not recommend Dr. Clark's diet suggestions but I think that she has hit the target about the toxic soup that surrounds us. When you mentioned "skin soreness" I got the impression of chemicals being excreted.

And then I would be remiss if I did not include information that not too many people find appealing but it is truly the best product to put on the skin as is well known in many indigenous societies. Urine.

Premarin, prescribed for menopause contains horse urine, so it is used in our society but hidden through euphemistic language. I do not recommend Premarin in any way, shape or form. Only mention it so you know that it is commonly used.

Urine is an excellent facial tonic. Just apply fresh urine to the skin and let it air dry. It will have NO odor. If you find this information too fantastic to consider, just discard it.

Hoping I've given you some food for thought.


In a message dated 3/15/02 7:31:49 AM, AJ writes:

Hi Rhio!! Thank you again for such wonderful advice! I know you must be terribly busy and i really appreciate your taking time to write me back! My husband bought me your cookbook and I have been trying a bunch of recipes and they are wonderful! Since I first wrote to you and went on only fruits and vegetables, my skin has cleared up 40%. This week I started sprouting and I'm excited to add that kind of stuff to my diet as well! I was just wondering… I have this obnoxious step mother who tells me that it is bad to just go on fruits and vegetables for 2 weeks and that you cannot get the proper protein your body needs without animal proteins… which she says are superior to food combining.. or something like that. Is there any scientific study i could hand her that you know of to keep her quiet??

Once again, thank you so much and your book is incredible!


Dear AJ,

I'm glad that you like my book and recipes!!

Your skin clearing up 40% is a great start. You will soon have the most beautiful skin imaginable.

I'm sorry to hear about your stepmother's unpleasantness, but I do not believe that anything you say or "prove" to her will have the desired effect of keeping her quiet. What might do it in the end is if you just quietly stay the course and that amazingly beautiful skin emerges. What can one say to success after all?

In our country we have all been brainwashed to believe that our bodies have a life-threatening need for protein and more protein. And think back, how did we get this idea? Remember the industries that benefit from people believing this propaganda and there you have the answer.

Now, let's read a page from the book of Nature's wisdom. In the time of a body's greatest need for protein – when we are babies and growing at the fastest pace – Nature designates that Mother's milk, the ideal food for babies, contains only 2 to 3% protein. So why would it be, when we are adults and all of our organs and tissues are fully developed, and the only need for protein is for repair, not building, why then would we need more protein? The answer is – we do not need more protein. We actually need very little protein to repair and maintain. And all the protein that we do need can be obtained from the abundance of amino acids in all fruits and vegetables. The body uses these amino acids to create the various types of proteins that it requires.

When a body takes in protein instead of amino acids – from meat, poultry, fish, dairy – what is the first thing that the body has to do with the protein from these sources? The first order of business is to break the protein down into its constituent amino acids. So by taking in amino acids instead of protein, you save the body all that work. Less work and less stress on our systems. Now once the body has broken the protein down to amino acids, what does it do next? It takes various configurations of amino acids to build specialized protein for whatever it is repairing. Certain types of protein are required to replace or repair skin cells and other types of protein are required for other body organs and tissues.

Now if you believe the foregoing paragraph to be true as I do, then you understand that meat, fish, poultry and dairy are actually an inferior source of protein. Instead, we have been taught to believe that those are the superior sources, while fruits, vegetables, legumes and seeds are the inferior sources. The evidence that they profer for this idea is that protein (meat, fish, poultry & dairy) has all the "essential" amino acids in it (a complete protein), but fruits, vegetables, legumes and seeds are "incomplete". But incomplete by whose standards? Certainly not by Nature's.

The whole idea of complete and incomplete protein is a fabrication. The body has an "amino acid pool" and when it is building a protein, it goes to the amino acid pool and pulls what it needs from it. You don't have to eat "complete" proteins at every meal or do "proper" food combining of vegetarian foods to replenish this amino acid pool. It is always there and available as long as a body is not starving to death.

There is a book available called Food for Humans by Patrick Wright, wherein he presents documented research from European doctors that shows that many diseases stem not from a lack of protein but instead from the toxicity of excessive protein consumption. This is not very well known or understood by most Americans who believe there is no such thing as too much protein.

In the final analysis, the "proof" of the raw food diet and lifestyle will be given to you by your own body with its increased beauty and health. Stay the course and much good luck.

In friendship,


In a message dated 3/15/02 1:21:02 PM, AJ writes:

Dear Rhio,

What a beautiful explanation! It is so logical and wonderful, it amazes me that people like my stepmother fight till they're red in the face just so they can keep living their lives without changing. (even though she herself has numerous health problems) I really appreciate all your help again! I can't reiterate enough how much all this has changed my life! Even my husband says he has never felt better – just since we haven't cooked our food for 2 and a half weeks! There should be a living foods superstore online that sells everything you could possible want or need in one place! Unless there already is! Thank you again!


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