In Thailand I took up eating rice and dropped the raw food diet.
For the two years prior to that I ate almost 100% raw vegan…with the exception of coffee and cooked vegetables in restaurants (to avoid food poisoning, which has been a problem for me with salads, etc, in regular restaurants.)
At first, eating raw felt great. I lost weight, had plenty of energy, and my residual eating-disordered thought patterns went away. But after a year or so it didn’t feel so great. My energy was good, but I got sick frequently, with food poisoning symptoms. My moods were highly unstable- not to attribute that to diet; I just want to emphasize that eating raw does not cure depression (one of the many ‘miracles’ attributed to the diet).
But I also started to find it hard to digest some raw foods..especially raw vegetables hurt my stomach. So I avoided a lot of healthy foods and ate a higher natural sugar (fruit, honey, etc) diet than is ideal.
Traveling to Thailand was a great experience for a number of reasons. The food, in general, was very clean and fresh. I was forced to eat very simply: every day was the same- fresh fruit, cooked vegetables, rice, and some cashews. I felt great, and have tried to simulate that diet as much as possible in Portland.
The other strange thing to me has been this: I now have an aversion to raw restaurants. After spending a week earlier this month in NYC, where there were many raw vegan restaurants I’d been previously interested in trying, I chose to eat at none of them. The menus looked too complex and heavy. My favorite restaurant there was a macrobiotic place, Souen.
If I’d continued to feel great eating raw, I would have kept eating that way. Being isolated into a situation where it wasn’t practical at all (Thailand), and experiencing how much better I felt, well, that gave me a nice opportunity to appreciate the change.