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Raw Food Challenge – Completed After 30 Days!

(Breakfast! 1 Whole Organic Honeydew Melon)

I’ve reached the final point in my Raw Food 30 Day Challenge. It has been a great adventure. While I experienced some incredible increases in my overall health and wellness, I was also happy to break the 30-day streak with a dinner at a favorite vegan restaurant of mine with some friends last night!

In my previous updates, I wrote about the benefits I was experiencing through this way of eating. Those benefits continued, and if anything became even more pronounced throughout the last 10 days of the challenge. I feel incredibly light. I think clearly. My skin is clear and I really feel great overall.

In terms of body composition, here is where that ended up. Keep in mind that throughout this entire challenge I had no intention to lose weight. I am already fit and slim enough. I also made a point to eat a significant number of calories (mostly through fresh, organic, ripe fruits!). My goal was to try to keep my caloric intake similar to what my previous diet was (roughly 2300 calories per day). I think I struggled to do this for the first 10 days or so, but then got the routine down and was eating plenty.

While I lost over 6 pounds in my first week of the Raw Food Challenge (I wasn’t eating enough), my weight stabilized for a few weeks and then started to rise a bit in the final 10 days. Overall, my bodyfat change shows a 2% drop. Given that I was already very lean at 11% to start, this is a big deal. To put this into perspective, this 2% drop in bodyfat means that I lost about 20% of the total fat on my body in only 30 days!

(Ingredients for my 100% Raw Sundried-Tomato Pasta Sauce)

This is staggering. Aside from the numbers, it is blatantly obvious to me that my body is far healthier. I am slimmer in the right places, my flexibility is far better than before and my skin is so much clearer. I have even noticed small scars on my skin, from long ago, starting to heal.

Perhaps the biggest shift for me has been around food in general. This Raw Food Challenge really gave my body and a mind a reset in terms of what I consider to be real nourishing food. I am now accustomed to eating large meals of just fruit or greens. I don’t need lots of grains or breads or other proteins to feel like I’ve had a meal. I’ve moved away from cravings for fried or spicy foods and my taste buds have become so much more sensitive. I am just so much more aware of what I am putting into my body.

(100% Raw Kelp Noodles w/ Almond-Cilantro Pesto)

Another thing I’ve gained from this experiment is that I’ve started to care less about what other people think about what I do. I’m far more comfortable to just be the way I am, and serve as an example for others – as opposed to trying to fit in. I guess when you sit down at a lunch table with a half-dozen bananas, you learn to stop paying too much attention to what other people think about you, and just do what you have to do! After all, which is better – a few bananas or a Big Mac? Why then do people gawk at someone eating a bunch of bananas but think nothing of eating half a cow? You just gotta laugh!

So, with all these benefits – Why am I not going to continue the 100% Raw Food Diet? Well, first of all I am convinced that eating a large amount of water rich, fresh, ripe and organic fruits and veggies is the way to go. I will absolutely continue to eat a very high percentage of raw foods.

(More 100% Raw Kelp Noodles w/ Sesame-Pepper-Ginger-Turmeric Pesto)

However, I do also enjoy the social aspects that food has to offer. I enjoy the vegan meals that my family will make on occasion and I do enjoy the occasional cup of hot tea or a vegan donut every now and then! I don’t feel like foregoing those things.

I am also aware of the stress that comes with trying to be 100% anything. That takes a toll on the body just as much as a poor diet or lack of exercise does. I don’t want to fall into another trap of trying to be an absolutist. Going forward, I’m going to enjoy as much raw food as I can – probably 50% or so of my diet – focusing on fresh fruits and veggies (as opposed to high fat raw foods), and see where that takes me.


  1. Pamme says:

    I’m with Rashmi… those 2 dishes look great. Please share the recipes! I’ve been raw for 2 months and love it. I like your take on not worrying about being 100% anything. Just do what you love!

  2. Dan says:

    FYI, the time of your posting must be set to London time as it is not 3:49am anywhere in the USA right now, it is 8:49 on the West Coast

  3. Dan says:

    I have gone raw for one weeks spurts and felt the benefit. In my reading I hear that eating too much sugary fruit is bad. Clement from Hippocrotes advocates not even eating fruit if trying to heal due to the fruit in modern times has been hybridized and made more sweet. The guy from rawlife.com is preaching similar ideas. I personally could not eat five bananas for a meal as the sugar count would be over the top for me and I would be sick. In fact the fruit I do eat is low glycemic. I am sure everyone is different. Just that her in San Francisco I go to a vegetarian grocery store called Rainbow foods and see a ton of unhealthy looking people who may be vegetarian for animal rights issues and have no idea that they are eating a bad mix of vegetarian food. Anyway, just throwing that out for your readers to do more research and question that eating a ton of sugary fruit may not be health for everyone.

  4. Ravi Raman says:

    Hey Darrick – how goes the durian festival? I am missing your regular blog posts! Pls do post some photos and more blog updates so I can continue to vicariously live through u 🙂

    I had not seen that interview, I just subscribed to that blog and will check it out, thanks for the tip.

  5. darrick says:

    Nice job Ravi,
    this was great to watch you. I believe you and I agree that a raw fruit diet is the ultimate for our health, the environment, and the animals. I know eventually I will be this way 100%. After 2 years on the raw journey with many learning experiences, I also believe in not creating extra stress in my body by feeling I have to do this now.
    Today I am eating raw fruit diet and loving it, tomorrow is another day.

    did you see this guy’s interview…..

  6. Rashmi Rao says:

    Hello Ravi….Awesome…and very inspiring…..the pictures of the dishes do look very inviting…. I am planning to start on a Raw food journey myself….and am looking out for bookes or online sources that have information about raw food dishes and recipes ..if you could call it that 🙂 …..it would be great of you could share any sources or particular recipes that you used….

    Again….abosulutely inspiring

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