Raw Keto is a term I came across after a Keto Mediterranean debate on ancestral food preparation in our region. Naturally, our ancestors ate a lot of raw foods, but they always knew what gives real nourishment. They smoked and sun-dried fish, seafood and meat because they knew that plants can’t provide long-term nourishment and satiety! They also perfected the salt-preservation and fermentation because in the hot Mediterranean climate, rarely anything can be preserved without salt.
Why do modern humans obsess with raw food?
We perfected cooking and preservation methods over the centuries. Moreover, we have all sorts of handy devices and kitchen robots. So why do we want to eat raw food? Is it our desire to experiment or just the lack of inspiration and will to cook? Many health-concerned people who try raw nutrition do feel better in the beginning because they exclude processed and industrial foods. But then the deficiencies kick in!
Dangers of raw plant-based nutrition
- Vitamin B12 is a water-soluble nutrient that executes an essential task in brain function. It is also important for red blood cell creation and the very synthesis of our DNA. People who utilise a strict raw plant-based diet are at danger for vitamin B12 insufficiency since the nutrient only occurs naturally in meat, eggs and seafood.
- A raw food diet may improve someone’s triglyceride levels, but limit their HDL, which we need! A study demonstrated that 43% of raw dieters had abnormally low HDL cholesterol. This is a risk for heart health and other vital functions. In general, the lack of fat in a raw diet can cause hormonal problems.
- Consuming deficient amounts of calcium and vitamin D are creating risks for osteoporosis. Since many raw food diets are based on fruits, vegetables and sprouted grains, you may find it difficult to meet your daily vitamin D and Calcium needs.
- Omega-3 to omega-6 ratio in general population is quite a problem today. By not eating seafood, the only natural source of omega-3 fatty acids, one can create serious health problems. Let’s remember, plant-based omega-3 fatty acids are ALA (Alpha-Linolenic acid) and they need to be converted into EPA or DHA (marine-derived omega-3 fatty acids). For this reason plant-based omega-3s are not sufficient or appropriate. On the other side, plants always offer more omega-6 than omega-3 fatty acids.
Raw Keto contradiction
Raw Keto sounds impossible, especially when we consider our Keto Mediterranean approach, but here and there we could enjoy a raw Ketogenic meal that will nourish us properly! When we say raw, we still include seafood and meat that has not been thermally processed. As Ketonians, we know the advantages of meat and fish and therefore we understand how to utilise them in our daily nutrition. Fermented, dried, smoked and raw! Well, raw seafood and meat have been on our plates for millennia. If we know how to compose a KMD plate, we will be swimming like a big fish in our Keto Mediterranean Sea. Let’s remember, Sushi, Carpaccio and oysters are raw foods that are very Keto friendly and safe if served properly!
Raw Keto Mediterranean salad
It was such a pleasure to serve this salad on a warm spring day to a bunch of foodie friends. I must add, the flavour was even better after the salad was chilled for 20 minutes in the refrigerator. Such a refreshing idea and so easy to prepare. Follow me through these easy steps and I guarantee you a pleasurable and nutritionally rich experience! 😉
Raw Keto Mediterranean SaladCourse: Appetiser, SaladCuisine: Keto MediterraneanDifficulty: Easy
1 large cucumber
1 small green bell pepper
150g (5,3 oz) smoked trout or smoked salmon filet
70g (2,5 oz) smoked beef prosciutto or beef jerky without added sugar
4-6 leaves of rocket (arugula)
A teaspoon of juniper berries (use black peppercorn as an alternative)
1 tsp extra virgin olive oil
4 quail eggs
3 tablespoons extra virgin olive oil
1/2 tsp sea salt
2 tbsp lemon juice
a pinch of nutmeg
1 clove garlic
- First prepare the sauce and keep it in the refrigerator before serving. Place quail eggs, garlic, spices and olive oil in a blender and blend till you get a smooth mayonnaise alike sauce.
- Wash the cucumber well and cut it in half. Remove the seeds. Using a vegetable peeler slice it into very thin slices. Place them on a large cutting board. Place a piece of smoked fish on each slice and roll them so that they look like small roses.
- Cut the green bell pepper into sticks. Do the same with the prosciutto. Now assemble the rolls on the plate and place the sticks of pepper and prosciutto in between like in the photo. Add the rocket for decoration. Sprinkle with juniper berries and olive oil. You can add some ground red peppercorn.
- Now add some of your earlier prepared quail-egg sauce on the plate and serve. If it’s a hot day, refrigerate the salad for 15-20 minutes before serving.
- You can add a few pitted olives or fermented horn peppers as decoration. Also, a nice crunchy touch would be to add some pine nuts or sesame seeds.