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 Post subject: Vegetables you should NOT eat raw!!!
PostPosted: Wed Feb 16, 2011 8:22 pm 

Posts: 830
Here's another blog from The Healthy Home Economist explaining why certain vegetables should NOT be eaten RAW! And all these years I thought we were eating so well with our raw spinach salads or smoothies rich with raw spinach I sneaked in them! This info is quoted from: ... ink-again/ It corroborates with the well-documented article called "Plants Bite Back" from the Weston A. Price Foundation's quarterly Wise Traditions magazine: ... -back.html

Not everything should be eaten raw, especially vegetables!

Some vegetables must be cooked else you are actually harming yourself. Below is a rundown of what veggies should not be eaten raw either in whole or juiced form.

Cruciferous Vegetables

Sorry to be the bearer of bad news, but cruciferous vegetables should be cooked before eating as they contain chemicals that BLOCK the production of thyroid hormone in your body! Considering that 2 out of every 3 Westerners are either overweight or obese and this is projected to jump to 75% by 2020, this is of particular importance as folks struggling with weight usually suffer from borderline to full blown hypothyroidism.

Hypothyroidism is a condition where the thyroid gland does not make enough thyroid hormone, so someone suffering from this condition surely does not want to be eating foods that will block what little thyroid hormone is being produced in the first place!

Symptoms of hypothyroidism include cold hands and feet, thinning hair, fatigue, reduced or nonexistent libido, coarse dry hair, constipation, difficulty losing weight, and depression among many others.

Cooking crucifers reduces the goitrogenic substances by about 2/3. Fermentation does not reduce goitrogens in these veggies, but since fermented crucifers such as sauerkraut are typically eaten as a condiment and, hence, in small amounts, consumption is fine if the diet is rich in iodine.

Here is the list of common cruciferous vegetables that you do not want to be eating raw if you want to protect your thyroid gland!

Arugula, broccoli, kale, cauliflower, cabbage, turnip, collard greens, bok choy, brussels sprouts, radish, rutabaga, and watercress.

Notice that many of these vegetables are commonly included in fresh veggie juice blends or in salads. While an occasional arugula salad or cup of coleslaw is not going to do harm to most folks, it would be wise not to make a habit of eating/drinking any of these vegetables in raw form.

Veggie Greens

Some veggie greens contain a chemical called oxalic acid. Oxalic acid is a very irritating substance to the mouth and intestinal tract. It also blocks iron and calcium absorption and may contribute to the formation of kidney stones.

The good news is that oxalic acid is completely neutralized by a light steaming or cooking.

Veggies containing oxalic acid include spinach, chard, parsley, chives, purslane and beet greens.

Hmmmm. Spinach is known for being high in iron, yet eating it raw will not necessarily give you the iron you want because of the oxalic acid?

Yep, that

Thu Nov 18, 2010 9:12 pm
 Post subject: Re: Vegetables you should NOT eat raw!!!
PostPosted: Wed Feb 16, 2011 9:25 pm 

Posts: 830

Spinach Lime peel Chocolate
Soy protein Rhubarb Instant coffee
Tofu Swiss chard Leeks
Peanuts Parsley Tea
Peanut butter Sweet potatoes Okra
Pecans Pokeweed Wheat germ
Lemon peel Black pepper

This list is taken from an excellent article by Dr. William Shaw of the Great Plains Laboratory titled The Role of Oxalates in Autism and Chronic Disorders ... rders.html

Thu Nov 18, 2010 9:12 pm
 Post subject: Re: Vegetables you should NOT eat raw!!!
PostPosted: Thu Mar 24, 2011 5:07 pm 

Posts: 429
I think I read in NT that the goitrogens in cabbage or other cruciferous veggies were neutralized
by fermenting. I was eating quite a bit of sauercraut and wasn't feeling great; so I guess that
explains it. And I would have thought that cooking would take care of all the goitrogens. It's
good to know that "eat your veggies" isn't always the case, though we do need them. I was
also eating lots of raw veggies, and have cut back to keep from getting too much fiber.

Casting all your care upon him, for he careth for you. 1 Peter 5:7

Sat Jan 17, 2009 6:43 pm
 Post subject: Re: Vegetables you should NOT eat raw!!!
PostPosted: Thu Mar 24, 2011 9:06 pm 

Posts: 830
I thought this article contained very sad news for salad lovers. But I'm glad to know it! I've had the hardest time remembering to first cook my cabbage or broccoli or kale or other goitrogenic or oxalic acid-filled vegetable before adding it to my bone broth when making soup. -- Nancy

Thu Nov 18, 2010 9:12 pm
 Post subject: Re: Vegetables you should NOT eat raw!!!
PostPosted: Wed May 23, 2012 10:37 pm 

Posts: 830
The Healthy Home Economist has expounded again about the dangers of eating high oxalate-containing dark, leafy greens raw, this time focusing on the very popular "green smoothies". She explains oxalates and how these glass-like plant crystals can lodge anywhere in the body, most commonly in the kidneys (making kidney stones). Our family is on the GAPS Diet AND following the recommendations in Ramiel Nagel's Cure Tooth Decay book. Both of these plans advise juicing of mineral and vitamin-rich leafy greens for detoxification of the body and re-mineralization of the teeth (and bones). I'm going to study this more. Just making juice or smoothies from lettuce and celery (low-oxalate greens) sounds kind of boring.

Here's the HHE article--too important not to quote here:

How Green Smoothies Can Devastate Your Health

Green smoothies are all the rage these days with many people consuming them every day or at least several times a week in an attempt to get healthy and “alkalize” the body.

Whenever I visit the cafe of my local healthfood store, there are usually several people in gym clothes lined up to order a green smoothie to sip after their workout.

Green smoothies are made by blending large amounts of raw leafy green vegetables with fruit to soften and sweeten the taste. Typical vegetables included in green smoothies are kale, spinach, swiss chard, collard greens, celery, broccoli, and parsley.

Is the green smoothie fad a truly healthy habit over the long term or can consumption of these seemingly healthy drinks in fact contribute to serious health problems?

Raw Leafy Greens Contain High Oxalate Levels

Frequent consumption of large quantities of raw, leafy green vegetables as occurs when a person drinks green smoothies can be deceiving at first as a person will probably initially feel great after adopting this habit particularly if he or she is coming off a highly processed, nutrient poor diet.

The vegetables used in green smoothies are almost without exception high oxalate foods. Over time, a high oxalate diet can contribute to some very serious health problems particularly if you are one of the 20% of people (1 in 5) that have a genetic tendency to produce oxalates or if you suffer from candida or other fungal challenge. In those cases, a high oxalate diet can deal a devastating blow to health.

Oxalate Toxicity Not a New Problem

Humans have suffered the effects of oxalate toxicity since ancient times. A 2000 year old mummy from Chile was discovered through x-ray analysis to have an oxalate kidney stone about the size of a golf ball!

Oxalates can be deposited almost anywhere in the body and wherever they land, pain or worse is the result.

75-90% of kidney stones are oxalate related with 10-15% of Americans afflicted at some point during their lives. As the star shaped crystalline stones pass from the kidney, they cause pressure and pain in the bladder and urethra and can actually tear up the walls of the urinary tract.

Oxalate Stones Can Form in Any Tissue

Oxalate stones can show up in any body tissue including the brain and even the heart.

Oxalate crystals resembling shards of glass which become lodged in the heart cause tiny tears and damage to this vital muscle with every single contraction pumping life giving blood to the rest of the body.

Oxalate crystals which end up in the thyroid can cause thyroid disease by damaging thyroid tissue.

A frequent location for oxalates to end up is skeletal muscle which will cause pain with even normal movement and make exercise nearly impossible. William Shaw PhD, Director of The Great Plains Laboratory for Health, Nutrition and Metabolism who has studied oxalates extensively, is convinced that oxalate toxicity is a factor in fibromyalgia the pain of which can absolutely devastate a person’s life.

Vulvodynia – Painful Sex

Cases of women experiencing painful sex are on the rise with oxalates a possible culprit.

Vulvodynia, a condition causing pain in and around the vagina, is linked to oxalates deposited in this delicate reproductive tissue. Oxalate crystals are very acidic and they cause irritation, burning, and stinging sensations for affected women with an accompanying feeling of rawness whenever they engage in sexual relations.

Oxalates Are Fungal in Origin

A surprising finding is that oxalates are produced in large amounts by fungus. Large stones have been found in the sinuses and lungs of people suffering from systemic fungal infections such as candida or Aspergillus.

Therefore, anyone who suffers from any sort of candida or other fungal challenge like fungus nails or dandruff would be wise to be very concerned about oxalate intake via the diet.

Consumption of green smoothies would not in any way contribute to improvement of health in these situations. Given that the majority of people today suffer from gut imbalance/fungal issues caused by antibiotic and prescription drug use along with consumption of processed foods, a high oxalate diet which includes green smoothies is an unwise practice for virtually everyone.

Does Cooking Destroy Oxalates?

Would it be safe to prepare green smoothies with leafy greens that have been lightly steamed first?

Not really, because oxalates are extremely stable and while cooking high oxalate foods like leafy greens (and discarding the cooking water) does reduce the oxalate level, it remains quite high.

Since green smoothies are consumed so frequently by those who swear by them, a light steaming of the veggies first would not make a significant difference over the long term.

Skip The Green Smoothies!

The best course of action for health, then, is to opt out of the green smoothie fad.

If you enjoy green leafy vegetables, enjoy them in moderation in salads (not huge ones every single day) or even better, cook them thoroughly and carefully drain and discard all the cooking water – never use it in soups and sauces! Be sure to serve cooked leafy greens with butter for maximum absorption of minerals.

If you already are suffering from some of the ailments described in this article and suspect a high oxalate diet which includes green smoothies or a daily spinach salad may be the cause, stop this practice immediately and consult with a holistic physician who can guide you on the road to recovery and how to best rid your body of the oxalate crystals that are potentially irritating one or more of your body tissues.

( ... onomist%29)

Thu Nov 18, 2010 9:12 pm
 Post subject: Re: Vegetables you should NOT eat raw!!!
PostPosted: Wed May 23, 2012 10:59 pm 

Posts: 830
If you go to the link about green smoothies being bad for you, allow yourself some time to read the comments (there are almost 500 of them already!) below b/c they will help you think through the pros/cons, rights/wrongs of this article. Here is a post refuting the claims of the Healthy Home Economist. Note that it is written by a guy with a business which includes promotion of daily intake of green smoothies: ... ur-health/

Thu Nov 18, 2010 9:12 pm
 Post subject: Re: Vegetables you should NOT eat raw!!!
PostPosted: Tue May 29, 2012 12:03 am 

Posts: 830
Here's an interesting article about how to reduce oxalic acid in your food. At the end of this article, I submitted a question to find out exactly how much percentage fermentation reduces oxalic acid, especially as compare to boiling the same vegetables. Haven't heard back yet. ... mment-1180

Thu Nov 18, 2010 9:12 pm
 Post subject: Re: Vegetables you should NOT eat raw!!!
PostPosted: Mon Jun 04, 2012 5:49 pm 

Posts: 830
A friend just wrote me on Facebook concerned about a blog accusing Sarah Pope (The Healthy Home Economist) of being wrong about the worries over oxalic acid content in raw, leafy greens (as seen in the posts above on this Beeyoutiful forum topic). I wrote her a long response which I thought I might should share here as well:

I love Sarah Pope, the Healthy Home Economist. I think the blog the Green Smoothie folks are hating has been her most controversial yet. It's not the first time she's written about anti-toxins in plant foods, nor the only person I respect who writes about that. However, it IS bummer news no one, especially the raw foodies, wants to even consider.

Since she didn't like the sources Sarah uses, I will say I don't like the sources Robyn uses either. Here is a WAPF book review on Joel Fuhrman's Eat to Live, referred to several times in this blog post: ... at-to-live. Fuhrman may even be vegetarian; I'm not certain, but I know he's down on animal products in general. I've read too much to think that is correct.

Also, Robyn is obviously a fan of Hallelujah Acres, which is the all-raw (80% raw, at least, and no animal products at all) diet ministry of George Malkmus. HA is great for healing from cancer, but it is not good at all for maintaining life long-term. How can these folks complain that God gave us all these great plants to eat and not also notice that He gave us a lot of great animals to eat? There's just too much validated research to point to our bodies' needs for animal products, too.

So back to the raw smoothies. Probably doing a green smoothie several times a week or so isn't going to do you in or give you kidney stones. But I doubt God intended for us to be grinding up gobs of greens (or juicing gobs of oxalic acid-loaded greens, which is what I was doing) every day. These folks have a vested interest in people doing that, b/c that is how they are selling their books. Just be moderate about it. Enjoy some cooked and slathered with butter and enjoy some in salads and some in smoothies or juiced and don't worry. That's about where I've landed on it, b/c the stress of which way is best is probably worse for us than the problems both say are present!

If you want to read another article about raw veggies possibly being bad for us, read this one as well: ... ink-again/

Eat to Live by Joel Fuhrman - Weston A Price Foundation
Chris Masterjohn reviews Joel Fuhrman's book Eat to Live.

Thu Nov 18, 2010 9:12 pm
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