Professor Rozalind Graham spent 18 years as one of the most active writers and speakers on the raw food circuit. She is revered as much for redefining what constitutes compassionate living as for her straight-talking logic in matters of nutrition and health. Her husband is raw food promoter Dr Douglas Graham and for the last five years she has been a full-time mother to their daughter, Faychesca. She rarely writes these days and if you have made it to one of her few speaking engagements you should count yourself lucky. In this exclusive interview, she talks to Sarah Best about her own transition to raw foods, and shares her insights into the reasons behind disordered eating, and the importance of reconnecting with our true nature.
You’ve been following the raw vegan diet for over 23 years and in that time you’ve also been one of the world’s leading promoters of it. But I think it’s accurate to say you first started out on the alternative lifestyle path for compassionate reasons rather than health ones?
Yes. As I grew up I started to become more and more aware of what I now call congruency, although I didn’t have a word for it at the time. I had a deep, deep love of animals so I knew it wasn’t appropriate to be causing suffering to these precious beings by eating them. I honestly don’t remember what age I was when I went vegetarian, but I do know I was just a child.
What led you from vegetarianism (and later veganism) to discovering and adopting the raw diet and lifestyle?
As a young adult I was teaching exercise classes and one of my students was an Anglo-Indian lady. When she started coming she was quite heavy and didn’t look very well. She was absent for some time and one day I was in the supermarket and I bumped trolleys with a stunning woman – sparkling eyes, amazing skin, shiny hair. I knew I knew her but couldn’t work out from where. When she told me who she was I was astounded and I had to ask her, “What’s your secret – it obviously wasn’t my classes!” She put a copy of the book Fit For Life in my trolley, told me to “Read that,” kissed me on the cheek and left!