Thursday, 31 March 2016

The HCLF Raw Vegan Lifestyle

Hidy-ho friendly friends and welcome back to the teensy corner of the interwebs that holds refuge to my small, yet stuffed-full-of-food-pics blog!

On my mind today (actually this has been on my mind for the past few weeks, really!) is the ever-increasing and growing popularity of the HCLF (high carb, low fat) raw vegan diet/lifestyle.

If you're an avid healthy blog/ Instagram/ YouTube follower like me you have probably come across the pictures/ people/ reasons for this type of lifestyle. To get you in the right atmosphere for what to expect from people who follow this lifestyle, I've got a few pics for you:

1. Potatoes
 Potatoes make up a large portion of the carbs of this high carb low fat diet and I cannot count the number of vegan vlogs I have watched that show the process of oven baking mass quantities of potato without oil in the oven for a meal.
2. Bananas
 What seems to be the second biggest aspect of this diet is filling a meal with bananas. And when I say filling, I mean 10 bananas being the minimum.
 Whether they're eaten as a snack or blended up into a 10+ banana smoothie- bananas seem to be a large component of the HCLF lifestyle.

3. Freelee The Banana Girl
 On that note, this brings us to one of the most charismatic followers of the HCLF diet- Freelee The Banana Girl- who you can find on YouTube and see her Days In The Life and daily eats to find out more about this lifestyle.
Her charisma and strong opinions is what drew me to her videos and then her blog in the first place. I was mesmerized by what and the amount she ate as I had never seen anything like it. Starting the day with a 1.5L smoothie of 18+ dates and water- I couldn't get my head around it- surely a stomach couldn't fit all that in!
4. There are so many other aspects to this diet and I love the focus on fresh, organic, beautifully grown produce, so I am definitely not bagging this lifestyle/ diet choice, but I guess I do have my opinion/ concerns

The way the HCLF raw vegan diet is presented on social media is with images of incredibly slim, toned women who look flawless, have stunning hair, skin and bodies, have the energy to exercise for hours each day and just seem to have the best possible life! Now, that could entirely be as the result of this lifestyle- but when naive girls who are too young to truly understand how to fully nourish their bodies see results of slimness and beauty like this- cutting out entire food groups could be the answer... though no prior knowledge or research would go in to how to be properly nourished on this lifestyle.

Ultimately the simple pictures without info on how to thrive off this diet could result in girls developing eating disorders from not eating enough, malnourishment, osteoporosis, anaemia... the list goes on.

My point in a nutshell is this is a diet that needs to be taken extremely seriously with a lot of research and then effort to create every single meal and not just grab a packet of zero nutrition and I think that girls simply being drawn in by the beautiful results posted on Instagram or Facebook etc. need to realise that there are severe consequences to one's health if nutrition requirements are not met.
Again, I don't think this diet is the worst possible thing someone can do to their body, I just think with a diet of almost 100% fruits and veggies, one must eat a TON of fruit and veggies and a great variety too (which in some places could become quite pricey if bananas are not as cheap as chips and you're going through 20+ a day!)

It's quite funny, but I think subconsciously, after watching quite a few of Freeles's videos and other HCLF vegan vlogs, I've most definitely seen my diet take a little shift to a much greater raw fruit and veg intake:
 Look- 6 bananas in my smoothie!! Just kidding, I simply cut each one up and put them into individual serving bags for my smoothies during the week :P
But in all seriousness, here is an actual dinner I made that really hit the spot and after eating it I realised it was very HCLF-esque:
 1 whole baked white sweet potato (skin on because that tastes gooooood after baking in the oven- nature's candy!)
 Some steamed and then grilled pumpkin (no oil but cinnamon sprinkled on during the grilling):
 And a cup of steamed peas (because you all know how much I love peas!!)

So I think that was interesting to see the indirect way all this research/ video watching has affected my own cravings.

I don't think I can ever give up my love for mass amounts of nut butter, or avocado though- high carb and high fat? That sounds good to me!! :D

Your turn:
What are your thoughts on the HCLF diet?
Have you ever done the HCLF diet?
Favourite way to eat potatoes? I really like just roasted up full sweet potatoes (mini ones of course!) and just nom-ing on them- so tasty!)

I hope you all have a fabulous day, eat a banana or two, or just increase your fruit and veggie intake in general for the day :). Do something you love, be with those you love and as always; EAT SOMETHING DELICIOUS!! Bye for now friendly friends! :D

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