I came across this today surfing around the net on Dave Mendosa's site. He's a fantastic and well-respected source of diabetes information on the internet. His blog post is not an attack on raw food diets, he's writing about a study.
In a nutshell he writes how some "raw food people" may not be entirely correct when they say raw food is better for you. I agree with this and don't.
I Agree: I agree there was a reason why primitive peoples took the time to cook certain foods rather than eat them raw. They had to avoid pests & poison. Some foods had to be prepared a certain way to become safe.
In the raw food circles, I wish there was more information out there about the need for proper preparation or limited eating of: Raw kidney beans, buckwheat greens, spinach, prickly pear pads, unpeeled potatoes, alfalfa sprouts, some types of raw cassava, unfertilized raw eggs, apricot kernels, and parsnips.
For example, spinach and prickly pear pads are pretty high in oxalates which can be detrimental. They are better in limited raw amounts or cooked to reduce the amounts of oxalates.
I Don't Agree: The blog post did not talk about these foods, it talked about everyday foods like broccoli, carrots, and zucchini. It referenced a study that said cooking allowed certain nutrients to become more available, "probably because of matrix softening and increased extractability."
This is a big misconception people have about raw food (just like how some people think raw food means sushi, haha).
Most raw fooders don't eat a lot of broccoli, carrots, or zucchini in it's whole state. I personally am not going to bite into it like an apple. It will get stuck between my teeth and feel like hell going down if I eat a lot of it.
These things I either juice...or blend or grate or slice into paper-thin slices and marinate them. This causes the aforementioned "matrix softening and increased extractability."
Anyway, I wanted to throw my 2 cents into the fray as I felt this touched on a major misconception of eating common raw foods while ignoring other foods which could realistically pose a threat in their raw state.
I don't have anything against Dave and I think he has provided an INVALUABLE service to the diabetes community. Thank you Dave!