Cooking without heat treatment – Raw

Quite a few foods we appreciate eating by cooking without heat treatment – raw: (peeled) fruit, nuts and vegetables such as in salads being perhaps the best examples. But also meat (beef carpaccio) or fish (sashimi or sushi) can be eaten safely raw after taking a few precautions. (see below). But there is also a limit to eating raw foods. Many foods’ minerals and some vitamins are better absorbed and digested by our body after a heat treatment. Heat treatment also kills bacteria that could be harmful to our body.

Parasites and virus when dealing with raw fish

When making raw fish containing sushi or sashimi at home, take attention of the following. Use flash frozen foods or deep freeze fresh fish yourself for at the least 48 h at -20 C to kill any parasites.

For those who devour fresh raw oysters, be aware that you may contract a virus (such as the norovirus). This can get you a serious stomach upset for a good week. The virus in the oysters can only be killed by heat treatment. Thus the raw oyster lovers are warned and in general people with a weaker health should avoid eating raw oysters. So buy oysters for raw consumption from well known growing grounds which are regularly tested for the occurrence of this virus.

Uptake of vitamins and minerals

In general minerals are better taken up by our body from food than from water. Some oil soluble vitamins are better taken up in the presence of some fats or oils. Perhaps these oils and fats act is extraction agents. These allow the vitamins to be transferred and absorbed by the body.

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