Raw Month Challenge

Raw Month Challenge Results Strawberry Banana Fruit Salad

Here it is, our raw month challenge results post! As some of our readers may remember, we decided to do a 30 day raw vegan challenge beginning at the end of April 2014 through May 2014.  We never managed to post the results and our thoughts on the challenge before our hard drive crashed over the summer. Shame on us for not backing up, so if you are reading this right now you should make a mental note to back up your important files after you are done reading! Lucky for us, Athanasia kept old school notes with a pen and paper so we are still able to (finally) publish this post. Sure, we lost some of the recipes we had and, of course, any photos we did not already upload to our blog are gone too. However, we can still share with you what we do have. 

Let’s start with my thoughts on the 30 day challenge: I had gone about 95% raw before. Back in 2007 I became a raw vegan and remained on the raw vegan diet for two years. So, this was nothing new to me and I kind of knew what to expect. It was a bigger challenge for Athanasia in the beginning than it was for me. Naturally, we thought we were hungry a lot in the first few days, however, I believe some of that has to do with the body craving a lot of the vegan junk food we were so used to eating. That being said, the energy boost we were feeling by about the second day far outweighed the temporary feeling of hunger. The body makes some other adjustments in this period as well as it begins to get rid of excess waste. As disgusting as this sounds, we just want to let anybody who is thinking about doing a raw vegan challenge or a conversion over to full time raw diet what they can expect. Everything begins to stabilize at some point during the first week. For each person this is going to be slightly different depending on what your diet consisted of before.

Moving along, another benefit is how delicious real food begins to taste after a few days. The flavor starts bursting out of simple things like salads and smoothies (without added sweeteners especially). It’s a very refreshing change. After a few weeks you really only crave the nutrients and begin to forget about the junk food you were used to. Of course, we knew were would eventually be going back to a lot of the foods we were used to but we did keep our diet close to 50% raw throughout the rest of the summer after we completed the 30 day challenge.

Ok, so, let’s talk about some results for a bit. Obviously, as I mentioned, you feel a huge burst of energy. This comes along with a boost in mental clarity and focus as well (which should not be too much of a shock to anyone when replacing things like sugar with nutrient rich fruits and vegetables). I think saying we were bouncing off the walls would be a bit of an understatement. So, what about the weight loss? Yes, we both lost weight. Before I mention how much weight we lost, it’s important for me to mention the raw food diet is ok for most people to try on their own. However, if you have any kind of pre-existing medical conditions or are uncomfortable with making big changes to your diet, it is a good idea to consult with a doctor or nutritionist first! Athanasia and I obviously are not doctors or nutritionists; we are here to share recipes. Yeah, yeah but how much weight did you lose? Well, I lost 20 pounds (9 kg) and Athanasia lost 15.5 pounds (7 kg) over our 30 day challenge! We were pretty happy with that result for sure.

One final note, when coming off a raw food diet, it is very wise to take it very slow and easy. We were both looking forward to having some cooked food again. We each made a small baked potato for ourselves and not only was this delicious but it was very, very filling to us as well. We tried to make a vegan pizza in the next few days but our body was not quite ready for that yet. I would suggest eating almost all raw foods besides one meal a day for a while when coming off a raw food diet. It’s not good to dive in head first back into your old eating habits even if it is still a plant based vegan diet. Why? Well, first of all the body is not used to it anymore. You could get some minor or major digestion cramps or other problems associated with the stomach. Food that is just warm could easily burn your tongue or mouth as they are no longer used to eating hot food. Last, but not least, your metabolism is used to eating only for nutrition so when you introduce foods with less nutrition the metabolism slows to a crawl making weight gain possibilities sky-rocket! So, here are some words of wisdom: take it easy.

Strawberry Orange Smoothie Raw Vegan Recipe Day 1

Raw Trail Mix RecipeDay 2

Raw Vegan Tortilla Soup

Day 3

Day 4

Raw Vegan Zucchini Lasagna RecipeDay 5

Cinnamon Vanilla Banana SmoothieDay 6

Raw Vegan Cashew Ricotta Cheese Gluten FreeDay 7

Brainiac SmoothieDay 8

  • Breakfast: 1 glass of Brainiac Smoothie, 1 glass of Warrior Smoothie and Avocado Chocolate Pudding
  • Snack: 1 Apricot date bar
  • Lunch: Lettuce Tacos! Taco Meat spicy for him and mild for her, Nacho Cheese, Guacamole, chopped peppers, tomatoes, red onions, Parmesan and crazy burning sauce laid on fresh crunchy lettuce leaves
  • Snack: 1 apple, 1 cup of strawberries and mousmoula (greek fruits)
  • Dinner: Sprouted Red Quinoa Salad with tomatoes, peppers, red onions, olive paste, lettuce, spinach leaves and tahini dressing

Warrior Smoothie Raw Vegan Green Smoothie Gluten Free Dairy FreeDay 9

Raw Vegan Alfredo PastaDay 10

Raw Vegan Taco Meat SpicyDay 11

Raw Red Pepper HummusDay 12

  • Breakfast: 1 banana and 1 red apple
  • Snack: 1 blueberry date bar, 1 maca bar, 1 cacao bar
  • Lunch: Raw Red Pepper Hummus with carrot, zucchini and cucumber sticks to dip in
  • Snack: Skipped that day
  • Dinner: Lettuce, tomato and pepper salad with tahini dressing

Day 13

  • Breakfast: Fruit Salad with sliced bananas, dried pinneaple, dried blueberries and dried cranberries
  • Snack: Skipped that day
  • Lunch: Carrot, zucchini and cucumber sticks dipped in Raw Red Pepper Hummus
  • Snack: 1 cup of raw, unsalted cashews
  • Dinner: Lettuce, cucumber and tomato salad with olive oil drizzled on it and more Raw Red Pepper Hummus with carrot and cucumber sticks

Gluten Free Vegan Hazelnut Chocolate Ice Cream RecipeDay 14

  • Breakfast: 3 BIG scoops of Cacao Coconut Ice Cream, topped with pecans and maple syrup (you can try our Hazelnut Chocolate Ice Cream using raw hazelnuts instead of roasted ones)
  • Snack: Skipped that day
  • LunchPurple Rain Salad
  • Snack: 1 Maca Bar and 1 blueberry date bar
  • Dinner: 2 bananas, 1 cup of cherries and 2 glasses of Cherry Vanilla Smoothie

Raw Vegan Flax Seed Crackers RecipeDay 15

  • Breakfast: 2 glasses of Cherry Vanilla Smoothie
  • Snack: 1 blueberry date bar, 1 maca bar and Trail Mix
  • Lunch: Huge lettuce, spinach, tomato and olives salad, and 1 cup of cherries
  • Snack: Skipped that day
  • Dinner: Flaxseed Crackers dipped in Raw Hummus and mashed potato dip

Day 16

  • Breakfast: Skipped that day
  • Snack: 1 Cranberry Bar, 1 Coconut Bar and Trail Mix
  • Lunch: Lettuce, carrot and raw beat salad with tahini dressing
  • Snack: 2 cups of cherries
  • Dinner: 3 bananas drizzled with tahini, maple syrup and pecans

Raw Vegan Tomato Salsa RecipeDay 17

Raw Vegan Italian Sausage Pizza RecipeDay 18

Raw Vegan Chocolate Caramel PieDay 19

  • Breakfast:  2 bananas
  • Snack: Raw Brownie Cake which we bought from Bamboo Vegan 
  • Lunch: Cabbage Carrot Salad with olive oil
  • Snack: 2 glasses of freshly squeezed orange juice and 1 cup of cherries
  • Dinner: Lettuce salad with Taco Meat and tahini dressing

Day 20

Vegan Caramel Apple Cheesecake Gluten Free Eggless Dairy Free Non-GMO Gourmet Dessert RecipeDay 21

Strawberry Banana Ice CreamDay 22

Gluten Free Raw Vegan Easy Tomato Soup RecipeDay 23

Cardamom SaladDay 24

  • Breakfast: 2 glasses of banana pineapple ginger smoothie
  • Snack: Raw cashew and dehydrated raspberry mix
  • Lunch: Cardamom salad
  • Snack: 4 nectarines
  • Dinner: What was left of cardamom salad and 1 glass of banana pineapple ginger smoothie

Day 25

Banana Basil Smoothie Raw Vegan RecipeDay 26

Luscious Raw Chocolate Truffles Vegan Gluten Free Christmas Recipe Festivus Happy Holidays!Day 27

Day 28

Strawberry Banana Fruit SaladDay 29

Day 30


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9 thoughts on “Raw Month Challenge

  1. Hello. Athanasia just popped by my blog to say hi and I wanted to see what you guys had to share as well and this post jumped at me 🙂 . Thanks for sharing your experience with the challenge. It’s always interesting to read how people respond to a raw diet. I’m personally about 70-80% raw these days and find that balance to work best. I’ve done more and less before, but for some reason 80-20% is my happy place 🙂 . I’m curious, why did you choose not to stick with it on a more permanent basis {both the first time around in 2007 and now}?

    1. Hi, thank you for reading our post! Let’s see, I was raw from 2007 until about October of 2009. I was pretty busy suddenly in 2009 as I was trying to balance work, getting my real estate license in Minnesota, playing music and trying to have some kind of social life. This left me with almost no time for the kitchen. I began eating cooked foods all the time like a rice, bean and lettuce bowl from Chipotle or making something quick at home like rice or quinoa made in a rice cooker. We only had two raw vegan restaurants in Minnesota that I knew of back then and I did not live very close to them (besides their prices being ridiculous). So, once I fell out of the raw vegan diet it was so easy to stay there. Once I became aware of Daiya vegan cheese I went on a pizza kick for a few years too. I definitely have a weakness for pizza!

      As far as why Athanasia and I did not stay with it last year: what can we say? Haha, we have a weakness for cooked food. We still try to eat something raw once a day or more. Salads, smoothies, freshly made juice, and so on; however, I would say that only adds up to about 25-50% of our diet depending on the day. Nowhere near your 70-80% at all! Athanasia currently has exams so we are making a better effort right now as we are shifting towards a mostly raw diet to help her concentration. Personally, I am about to do a juice fast for a while as it’s been a while since I have done one. I guess we change our diet a bit according to what we have going on in our lives at any given moment. For example, we like to eat as much raw food as possible in the summer because it gets so hot here! It’s nice to not have to use the oven in the summer.

      Thank you for your comment and question Audrey! We love your blog!

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