World Chefs: Canada's McNish trades steaks for raw foods

Tue Apr 17, 2012 6:41am EDT
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By Patricia Reaney

NEW YORK (Reuters) - Classically trained Canadian chef Douglas McNish was overweight and unhappy when he decided he needed to make a change in his life and his diet, and he hasn't looked back since.

In his first cookbook, "Eat Raw, Eat Well," the 29-year-old Toronto-based executive chef, teacher and raw food consultant provides 400 raw, vegan and gluten-free recipes and explains why he switched from a traditional diet and cooking steaks professionally and decided to give up meat and become a vegan and then a raw food chief.

"One day I woke up and decided to change my life. I was sick and tired of being sick and tired," he said.

Along the way he dropped 100 pounds (45 kg) through a change in diet and exercise and experienced a lightness and increased energy that he said he had never known before.

He spoke to Reuters about why he decided to change how he eats, the benefits of a raw diet and the impact it has had on his health and career.

Q: What exactly is a raw food diet?

A: "It is composed of fruits and vegetables, nuts and seeds. Generally it is organic and nothing is heated beyond 115 degrees Fahrenheit (46 degrees Centigrade).

Q: Why is there a temperature restriction?   Continued...