Raw Vegan Obsessions…

by Leisa on June 3, 2009

I once spent quite a lot of time reading raw vegan forums and message boards and interacting with the people who posted there – but just lately I’ve noticed that a lot of these places are becoming platforms for people to bully others who may not hold such extreme views as themselves.

I was once a “food evangelist” too, pushing my almost religious beliefs about food and health on to anyone who would listen – and to plenty who didn’t want to listen either!  I knew my views on health were right, and there was no way I was going to let anyone slip through the cracks!

Thank goodness I grew up!

Maybe we all need to go through this stage before we come out the other end wiser and more humble people with a greater appreciation that every individual is on a different journey through this life, and that one size dietary regimes do not fit all.

I have been accused on this blog of being “religious” in my views around food – but obviously those people haven’t read a lot of what I’ve written, because many a time I have urged people to lighten up, to not be obsessive about every morsel, to eat a small amount of organic meat if you so choose, to not judge others for their choices, to not use your choice of diet to act superior to others, and to know that there is more to health than just food.

So it saddens me to hear that people are abused on some raw vegan sites for expressing differing opinions about what is best to eat.  Surely a healthy attitude is about sharing knowledge as compassionate, caring human beings?  Once bullying starts, I have to wonder why the bully has such a need to be right, that he or she would hit out and abuse others to prove it.

Charles Eisenstein, a writer I admire very much has this to say in his book “The Yoga of Eating” – “There are people, most notably extreme adherents of various dietary philosophies or exercise regimens, who worship bodily health, seeing it as an indication of virtue, and disease as a sign of, or punishment for, some impurity of diet or practice.

According to this calculus, the healthy zealot of our scenario is superior to the sick people of the world. He is better than they are. He has found the True Gospel, and will not hesitate to proselytize. Very often (as with anyone who clings to pride) the result is humiliation – and what could be more humiliating to the health zealot than a serious illness?

But even if the health-worshipper never gets sick, what good does his health do? The body is our vehicle for living and acting in the world’ it is meant to be used. There is more to health, to wholeness, than mere physical integrity. You have been incarnated as this body for a purpose, and to achieve it your body possesses tremendous strength, resilience, and resources.”

I agree.  There is enough argument and ugliness in this world without throwing raw food into the ring.

On the other end though, Jennie from Raw Pleasure has done a monumental job of keeping her forum a friendly and non-judgemental place to exchange ideas on raw vegan food and lifestyle.  Check it out!  Raw Pleasure Forum



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3 commentsAdd comment

Sonia August 25, 2011 at 5:35 am

I used to mix with certain raw foodists who embraced me when I was on 100% raw vegan food. But when I told them that in the winter months, I like my cooked veggies to keep me warm I was no longer their friend. They dropped me like a hot cake. I found them to be obsessive, judgmental, with parochial views. In fact, one person became quite adamant that the raw vegan diet is the only way, therefore, if you don’t live that lifestyle, then suffer. They had a real sense of superiority. They had no compassion for anyone who was not on the 100% raw vegan lifestyle. I am still a vegan, but don’t feel the need to tell people what I eat. My diet and lifestyle is a part of my life, not the b all and end all.

Sonia August 25, 2011 at 5:50 am

In addition to my last post, when Paul Nissan came out and said he is now having steamed vegetables to keep him warm in the winter, a male blogger said he hoped Paul got sick again with his chrohn’ disease for going off the 100% raw food diet.

This is the type of mentallity and controlling behaviour your dealing with. To wish this disease upon anyone, is extremely vindictive and nasty. Karma has a way of working things out. What you wish for others, you also wish for yourself.

Our own Ian Gawler saved his life from cancer with a vegan diet over 20 years ago. He was on raw food for the first three months and said it was too hard, so he started eating steam vegetables as well. He is still alive on cooked vegies with a high raw diet running the cancer clinic in Melbourne. Dr Day.com cured herself of end stage breast cancer with raw and cooked vegan foods. The 100% raw food diet is not the only answer to a cure. Vegan is the best way, but stress, emotions, happiness, loneliness all play a part. Rigidity is not the answer in any form.

Karen August 25, 2011 at 8:23 am

Here Here!! well said Leisa, couldn’t have said it better myself. As long as we are eating genuinely healthy, wholesome food it really doesn’t matter.
Both yourself and Jen are wonderful roll models.. How lucky I am to know you both. 🙂

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