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Excerpt From "Raw Extreme Manifesto"

Change Your Body, Change Your Mind, and Change the World While Spending Almost Nothing

by Fred Ho with Peter Lew

Excerpt from Chapter Three: “How to Go Raw Extreme”

A few tips on making a smooth transition to the raw lifestyle and helping others around you understand it…

Just having conversations about the importance and benefits of raw to the person and to society initiates a rippling effect. When the examples are presented, such as at a social event for which the meal is all raw combined with great cultural and educational presentations, the raw extreme infection is spread. For example, my Afro Asian Scientific Soul Duo, featuring myself on baritone sax and my longtime friend and colleague Dr. Salim Washington, performed at an event organized by the Independent Media Sanctuary in Troy, New York. The concert and lecture presentation Salim and I gave was followed by a raw food reception organized and hosted by raw food proponents locally, which supplemented our respective talks about how Salim and I went raw and its meaning and significance to our revolutionary musical, political, and personal visions. People had a great time in the concert, postperformance talk-back, and during the reception. It was an example of social change activism and engagement that was holistic and synergistic, combining music, political discussion, and raw food production and participation.

Whether going raw involves children and/or other adults, the activities can be organized and practiced in fun, educational, and transformative ways. Making a “shopping list” of secondhand cookware items (such as a food processor, dehydrator, glass water urns, jars, and bottles, wooden utensils, etc.) can be shared, and searching through the many secondhand stores, flea markets, and tag sales can be a lot of fun and very rewarding, especially in terms of great bargains and huge amounts of money that are immediately saved. One favorite activity we have found with children, especially, has been making dehydrated kale chips because they are so easy and fun to do without any danger of potentially being burned by hot cooking oil used in making cooked chips or French fries. Kale chips are never greasy, very nutritious, and very addictive in their taste and flavor. These are the chips you never, ever have to fear will make your children obese. You’ll also enjoy having a lot less cleanup, especially the lack of grease and grime from baking and roasting meats.

Introducing raw food at potlucks and events adds an interesting and, to many non-raw foodists, “exotic” quality to the gathering, all of which is potential for further discussion of the raw extreme revolution, its personal health benefits, and a larger, more comprehensive vision of social and environmental responsibility and transformation.

But the strongest and loudest example is the change in you! Not only will you lose weight and be healthier and more energetic, which has many attendant psychological and spiritual benefits to enhance self-confidence and self-esteem, but you will be actually living the social change you espouse. And the raw extreme revolution will be taking root and flowering.

Fred Ho is an American jazz baritone saxophonist, composer, bandleader, playwright, writer, and social activist. He holds a B.A. in sociology from Harvard University. He is currently battling colon cancer and is the author of Diary of a Radical Cancer Warrior. He lives in Brooklyn, New York.

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