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>> Interview with Dhrumil Purohit


Interview with Dhrumil Purohit

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1. What are some Raw Food Staples in your current diet? Are you 100% Raw? How did you start?

On a daily basis I love the basics. Tomatoes, cucumbers, avocados, kale, celery, lemon, apples, green juice and flax oil. I like keeping it simple and at least once a week I unconsciously fast. This pretty much means that I get so involved in a project that I just forget to really eat and instead I live off on raw-lemonade or water.

I am 100% raw, but like I say on the blog, "100% raw means when fancy pants restaurants like Pure Food & Wine use maple syrup instead of raw-agave and cooked cocoa instead of raw-cocoa I give in." But that may happen once a month. Sometimes I might have raw-chocolate-tea, but the temperature is so low that I could put my finger in the cup without getting burned. I learned that little tip from Arnold of Arnold's Way in Philadelphia.

My raw food journey happened quite serendipitously. I had transitioned into being a junk food vegan around the age of 18 and after having done that for a year and a half I felt pretty sick. My acne was also getting worse and so it just didn't seem to be an optimal diet for me. Right around the time that I was questioning my moral vegan diet, I started having dreams where I would just be eating fruits. I would wake up the next day and ask myself, "I wonder what would happen if I just ate fruit?" I had that dream for two months at least 3 times a week. Then one day while shopping at my local organic co-op I ran into an amazingly healthy and fit man named Nature Love. As we started conversing he told me he ate this diet called "raw foods" and I was taken aback that people actually did that. It all seemed really weird with the recent dreams I was having. I invited Nature to my apartment the next day and he educated me and best friend on raw foods and we started 100% the next day.

2. What inspired you to start your website, welikeitraw.com?

David Wolfe was probably the biggest inspiration. We had been emailing each other for a couple of years and I would go out to seem him speak on any occasion that I could. I just really appreciated his passion. As we became friends David entrusted me a project of his and I totally dropped the ball. Even worse, I didn't call him back. This happened with quite a few things I was working on at the time. That time of my life was very challenging because I was going through huge waves of depression and on the surface I didn't know why. I would have so much anxiety and it would paralyze me physically and mentally to the point that I was reacting to much life based on fear. Through the works of many great mentors and teachers, primarily Eckhart Tolle, I started to realize that all my problems were based on the past and future - two things that don't even really exist except for in our minds. That was about a year ago, but I used that foundation to launch www.welikeitraw.com. I wanted to promote the benefits of eating raw-food but also point out that nothing is more important than peace of mind. And if you have peace of mind first, then it makes doing anything easy, including eating raw.

During my challenging days I never stopped eating primarily raw, although for a period 4.5 months I started eating baked yams and organic popcorn until one day I got really sick. After that it was back to 100%.

3. What kind of superfoods or supplements do you consume while being raw?

Maybe once or twice a week I'll have a hand full of goji berries or raw chocolate. When I travel, which I often do, I'll get Dr. David Jubb or the friendly folks at Pure Juice & Takeaway to load up my smoothies with Blue Green Algae or Maca. My buddy Neel Patel, a med student who is 100% raw and does research at Sloan Kettering often makes me eat Marine Minerals and MSM.

4. What are some ways of keeping warm this winter?

Even though I was born in Kenya and my ancestry is from India, I don't get cold easily. Sometimes drinking warm water helps or occasionally I'll make hot chocolate with raw cacao powder, agave nectar, cashew butter and lukewarm warm water.

5. What are some quick tips or hints for Raw newbies?

Don't identify yourself with the diet: One of the major challenges raw newbies have is getting caught up in the identity of what it means for them to be "raw". Just like an extremely materialistic person who is looking for himself in the things that he buys, many people often look for themselves in the diet they eat. "Oh, if only I could be 100% raw then all my problems would go away." Start to notice if you are looking for yourself in the diet and immediately you'll see shifts. Noticing is enough.

Discipline doesn't work: The challenge with discipline is that it is a technique to rid desire, but discipline is based on desire. When someone says, "I have discipline," what they often mean is that they are experienced at taking one desire and making it stronger than another. Not that this doesn't get the job done. In fact, discipline often does works, temporarily. However, discipline will ultimately always let us down because one day (for some people, many days) we'll have a desire that can't be trumped. Often when discipline failed me I used these two questions: 1) What do I feel must happen in order for me to be myself? 2) What do I feel has already happened that is preventing me from being myself?

6. Do you have any major influences?

Nature Love my original raw food mentor who introduced me to the diet. David Wolfe who has been my most influential teacher when it comes to specifically raw food. Eckhart Tolle and his partner Kim Eng who helped create the context for my peace of mind to rise. Joel Odhner from Raw Life Line and Arnold of Arnold's Way who have spent hours on end speaking with me about life and abundance. Is this starting to sound like an Grammy Award speech? Sarma Melngailis from Pure Food & Wine who's shear beauty has motivated me bring raw food to the masses just for the selfish reason of having more beautiful women like her on this planet. The We Like It Raw Squad, Neel, Nirav, Deepen, & Mihir. Dr. Jubb and Dr. Cousens are great mentors too, it should be illegal to be as smart as they are.

7. What is your favorite raw food recipe?

These are all featured on the blog: Garam Masala Gobi, Raw Chili, Raw Tamales and my personal favorite, We Like It Raw's Banging Kale Salad.

8. Do you have any dental problems on the Raw Diet?

I didn't for 2 years and then I got my first cavity eating raw 6 months ago. This is interesting that you asked though, because welikeitraw.com is going to be doing a 60 day review of a healthy teeth plan that David Wolfe once taught me. It involves food grade hydrogen peroxide. There are a few readers that have been asking about teeth so we'll probably involve them in the challenge as well. There is also a new product out called Tooth Soap, we'll be reviewing that as well.

9. Where do you see the Raw Food movement heading?

I see more and more people getting into raw food via their pets. Americans love their pets and will spend what ever it takes to keep them healthy. I also see a willingness on individuals to try things on their pets that they wouldn't try on themselves. But once your cat's leukemia is reversed you can't help but to question your own diet.

I see Whole Foods as being the next big gateway to raw food. They are planning on opening "Live Food Bars" around the country, they already have one in Austin, TX, and I can't imagine how many people will get introduced to raw food through them. All the vegans, vegetarians, free-rangers, macrobiotics and so on will start to notice raw food showing up all around them and they won't be able to help themselves!

The internet and celebs will also pimp raw food more so than ever.

10. Can you please tell us about some of your current projects you're working on and/or developing?

My tech firm Dharmaboost is building a raw food map system. It will plot all of the raw food restaurants in North America on a google maps page. It also will have events in the future. The first version will be out at the next of December.

We Like It Raw will also have better content and more gust editors. We currently update the site about once or twice a day, but starting soon it will be updated five to 6 times a day.

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