The vegan community seems to be dividing into vegans and raw foodists. I can see that a lot of vegan foods are not healthy, such as ready made meals. Many vegans live off of those foods.
For me, I am nearly totally vegan (with some very occasional goat's and sheeps cheese) and I try to include as many raw foods as possible...probably about 5 fruits and 10 veg/day with lots of raw nuts and seeds.
I can see the morality of being vegan. I can also see the nutritional value of most raw food. However, we know that certain vegetables (like corn, beans and potatoes) are indigestible raw and certain veggies are MORE nutritious when cooked, like tomatoes. Also, I feel like you aren't being cruel to a tomato by cooking it. If it's better for you, why not?
I am vegan and I have to tell you....the only food I "cook"...Oatmeal. Oh and I boil veggies, if that counts. Everything else is raw fruit like apples and oranges and raw veggies in my salads. I also eat nuts, seeds and Smart Dogs (which I microwave). I have never eaten a ready prepared meal...like a Kashi box type thing. Those to me seem gross. I would call myself a "Vegan Raw Foodist" but I certainly hate cooking, shy away from packaged, already prepared food---just because I prefer to know exactly WHAT I am eating. However, I LOVE progresso and campbells light soups (most are 50-80 cals a serving) and I microwave those. :)
As a mostly raw vegan (100% vegan, 80/20 raw/cooked) I find there is can be a balance as with all things (well except animal and animal byproducts). Most of the vegan/vegetarian friends that I have met do not do the highly processed prepackaged meals. I believe that many may start out that way due to not knowing how to do a vegan lifestyle, but once educated, they tend to adopt a typical healthy vegan diet. I have found that most vegan have a better appreciation for their food and thus shy away from processed foods and lean more towards a diet rich in fruits, vegetables (raw and cooked), nut and nut butters, beans, and whole grains. With that said, I find raw to offer more readily available nutrients, but as I mentioned, there is a balance for both raw and cooked.
*Side note: I do not believe microwaving food (or anything) to be safe. Microwaves alter the structure of the DNA and causes internal damage of the food by cooking it from the inside out subsequently killing the substance being "cooked".
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