How to Get Your Family to Eat More Raw Foods

You LOVE raw foods, right?

So why doesn’t everyone around you love them too?

Why can’t they see that all those dead animal flavoured excitotoxic chemical-laden non-foods are killing them slowly and that raw whole plant foods are the obvious choice for vibrant health?

Let me tell you, I hear you!

My going raw has been quite a journey for our whole family.  When you make a significant change (and diet is definitely a significant change) it’s going to alter your whole family dynamic.

There’ll be push-back, like there was in my family.

“You don’t make cookies for us anymore, Mum.”  (and cookies equate love, right?)

“Not another… banana…in my lunch box.  I’m sick of bananas!”

“Everyone else at school gets to eat junk food!”

Any of these ring a bell with you too?

Consider that your past habits of chocolate eating and pizza-bingeing helped to enable your family’s addiction to these non-foods.

If someone else is doing it too it must be alright, right?

So when you stop ‘indulging’ in these kinds of foods and behaviours there’s going to be backlash – for a little while – until a new equilibrium is settled into.

So it was with me, in the beginning of my raw food journey.

max cow eating coconutWe were ALL meat and dairy eaters, except for my youngest son, Felix, who hasn’t eaten dairy since he was 4 because of his asthma.

It’s been almost three years now since I embarked on my raw foods journey and We’ve all come a LONG way.

My youngest is now very high raw vegan.

My husband and eldest son have both quadrupled their raw fruit and veggie intake.  And all without too much hassling on my part.

I realized very early on that hassling them was only going to have the opposite effect to that which I wanted to create.

People ALWAYS make their own decisions based on what feels right to them.  I realized that if I wanted to influence them I needed to:

1)   lead by example

2)   Use praise, humour, fun and treats (raw, of course) to entice

3)   Let go of any expectations.

And…

4)   Love them NO MATTER WHAT.

All things considered, here are my best ever tips for getting your family to eat more raw foods…

Tip #1 – Don’t preach – Simply lead by example

You’re going raw because YOU want to go raw.  YOU want to experience peak health.  So pursue that goal.  Educate yourself.  Motivate yourself.  Focus on your own growth and be consistent in your choices.

When you are consistent in your approach to health, people around will start to take you seriously.  With people close to you this can take years sometimes.   Be patient.  All good things come to those who wait (and take action).

Tip #2 – Make raw desserts and smoothies

IMG_7156As human beings we all have a natural sweet tooth.  We are frugivores by nature and we are DESIGNED for eating the sweet, tropical fruits of the equatorial forests.

So your family won’t be able to help themselves when you present them with delectable sweet fruity treats.

Who can resist strawberry ‘nice’cream (simple blended frozen bananas and strawberries)?  Or a date nut torte?

There are gazillions of AMAZING raw desserts out there.  All you need to do is to get creative in the kitchen and you’ll have them coming back for more.

Slowly but surely you’ll be able to introduce them to more and more exotic fruits and vegetables in their raw natural state.

felix durianMy 9 year old recently discovered avocado and also durian, known as the king of fruits for it’s incredible nutritional properties.  (Durian is also the closest whole, natural food to breast milk in terms of it’s macronutrient ratio – carbs/fat/protein).

Last weekend he said to me, “Mummy, let’s play raw food restaurant this afternoon!”

He was so excited he decided to make a green juice, then a zucchini hummus and then some coconut, banana, pear biscuits.

All this from a boy who not so long ago was living almost exclusively on vegemite sandwiches!

Tip #3 – Take them on a raw food retreat

When I booked my whole family into the Woodstock Fruit Festival for a week of low fat raw food living I really didn’t know what was going to happen.  I even took along some muesli bars and crackers just in case they couldn’t do a whole week raw.

In the whole week they were there they dipped into the cooked food stash once, near the beginning.  The rest of the time they were completely happy eating their fill of ripe, raw, organic, whole fruits and vegetables.

And when they returned their comments really excited me…

“Since the fruit festival it seems much more appealing to eat fruits and veggies” (- eldest son, 11)

“I think I’d like to try being high raw when we get home.” (husband, aged 57)

“I’m going to be raw vegan, Mummy and I’m going to have my own website!” (youngest son, aged 9)

Don’t EVER underestimate the power that immersion can have on a person.  Your family will listen to other people much more than they will to you.

They need to hear it from people THEY relate to.  So my sons needed to hear it from long-time raw vegan children THEIR age.

And my husband needed to hear it from men of a similar age, with similar philosophical viewpoints.  (Thank you, Tony Wright and Tim Van Orden, I am forever grateful)

The Woodstock Fruit Festival is an AMAZING experience.  The money you invest in yourself to get there will pay you back for the rest of your life.  Make it a goal to get there in 2015.

Tip #4 – Read Karen Ranzi’s book “Creating Healthy Children – Through Attachment Parenting and Raw Foods.”

Felix's zucchini hummusThis book is, without a doubt, the best, most thoroughly researched book on health for families.

Karen is a mother, speech pathologist working with autistic children, as well as an eminent lecturer and author on creating healthy children.  Through her book she guides you on the path to creating happy and healthy children, confident of their disease-free future.

Her research is thorough, but it’s her stories of both her own family’s health awakening as well as those of others, that are what really make this book a ‘go-to’ resource for your family’s library.

You can check out Karen’s book and all about what she does at Superhealthychildren.com

Conclusion – If you’re having trouble being consistent with your own diet then you might need some help from an experienced mentor.  A coach can often see things you can’t and can help you fill in the ‘gaps’ of your raw food program so that you can become successful over the long run.

I absolutely LOVE helping people find true north with their health and I can help you go raw the easy way.  If you’d like to find out more about what I do please check out Real Raw Health Coaching.

What are your best tips for getting your family to eat more raw foods?  Please share your winning strategies in the comments below…

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Anthea Frances is an author, raw food health coach and host of the Raw Life Summit series.  Grab a copy of her free Balanced Raw Vegan Nutrition Checklist and start improving your health today!

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