1. What is a Fruitarian?

Lockman: “A fruitarian is someone who eats a fruit-based diet. Honestly, I don’t usually use the term because it’s not “scientific and so doesn’t have any accepted meaning; some people think it means only fruit and others think that it can include leafy greens, nuts and seeds, etc. Our closest primate relatives are “frugivores” and this is the term that I usually use to describe myself. A frugivore is an animal that eats a fruit-based diet (just as a carnivore may occasionally eat things besides flesh) a frugivore’s diet does indeed include leaves, nuts and seeds, and can include insects and even some flesh in nature; obviously, as a vegan, my diet includes no animal products at all.”

2. What inspired you into this lifestyle?

Lockman: “I became very ill within 6 months of college and got worse with 3 years of medical care. At that point, I went back to conventional nutrition as I had started to study it at 15 and reasoned that maybe it could help me. I quickly realized I was doing everything that it told me I should be doing and was still sicker than anyone I knew. I then reasoned that nutrition had to make a difference to health and so the issue had to be with conventional nutrition. I sought to determine what was actually natural to my body as I had an inherent life-long trust of nature and believed (and still do!) that nature held all of the answers. I became aware that every species had a natural diet and so my quest was to determine what was natural for humans; I quickly realized that what was natural for our closest primate relatives is also natural for us and in fact, our digestive tracts have changed very little and are nearly identical to those of the chimps and bonobos…”

3. Why is being a Fruitarian better and healthier than being a vegan?

Lockman: “First of all, eating a fruit-based diet is better than a standard vegan diet because an optimal diet is much better defined by what it includes rather than by what it removes. In other words, removing animal products in no way means that a diet is optimal. I got sick living mostly on pizza and beer and one could continue eating vegan pizza and beer; or nothing but vegan junk food. So while it’s true that animal products aren’t very good for us and will invariably lead to disease, processed vegan food is also not very healthy. So to make a diet as healthy as possible for our bodies, it must not only avoid animal products and processed foods, it must only include those things that our bodies are actually adapted for: fruits and soft, tender leafy greens.”

4. What are the health benefits?

Lockman: “The health benefits are a higher level of health and vitality in every way; more vital, more vibrant, clearer mind, better functioning body, more balanced, more calm, faster recovery time after exercise or injury, more resistance to being sick, ability to detoxify in real-time on an ongoing basis, etc. Honestly, the differences are so enormous that it’s not even possible for the average person to really grasp how much better they could feel until they’ve experienced it.”

5. What are the possible side effects?

Lockman: “Simply changing one’s diet to a diet that is invariably much higher water and fiber than one is used to will often create some digestive-system upset initially as the body begins to rehydrate and move old material. Similarly, there may be other symptoms that can occur as the body begins to cleanse and heal much faster on a fruit-based raw vegan diet than it ever did before. Many people don’t realize that symptoms are always evidence that the body is attempting to cleanse and heal and so imagine that the symptoms mean that there’s a problem with the diet, but this is not so. Once the body is truly clean and efficient (achieved much more rapidly via water-only fasting both long-enough and properly) there is no comparison to how it feels on an optimal fruit-based raw vegan diet versus any other diet.”

6. What is the Tanglewood Wellness Center?

Lockman: “Tanglewood is the world’s largest dedicated water-only fasting center where over the last 22.5 years we’ve guided more than 5000 clients from more than 110 countries (including dozens of Israelis) through water-only fasts averaging 26 days.”

7. What is water fasting and it’s process?

Lockman: “Water fasting (more accurately called, ‘water-only fasting,”) is the process of resting completely while sipping water for a period of time so that one’s body can use all of its energy to cleanse and heal itself.”

8. How do you encourage and inspire your clients at the wellness center?

Lockman: “ I use a multi-fold approach to encourage and inspire them:
A) I teach them the principles so that they truly understand what’s possible
B) I share many case histories with them so that they can see examples of people who have gotten the results that they wanted for themselves, and
C) I model the behavior for them, being a living example of the principles in action”

9. For someone who is considering adopting a fruitarian lifestyle, how would you recommend they get started in a safe manner?

Lockman: “One can simply change to a fruit-based diet with no danger. And if they prefer, they can also begin to modify their diet little by little rather than changing everything at once.”

10. How do you handle vitamin deficiencies and would you say that this lifestyle choice is “extreme” and not recommended for everyone?

Lockman: “ Nothing contains more vitamins than fruit and soft, tender leaves, and more important than vitamin (and overall nutrient content) is nutrient availability. Each species has a digestive tract specifically adapted to their particular diet and eating anything else will never come close to meeting their body’s needs as well as their own species-specific diet. In one study which demonstrates this, they gave human subjects a measured quantity of kale. They determined how many “vitamin A equivalency units” were available from the kale (the amount of beta carotene that could be converted into vitamin A in the body) and then measured to see how much was actually absorbed. At a later date, they gave the same subjects a measured quantity of papaya and again, calculated how much vitamin A could be made in the body from the beta carotene that the specific serving contained and then compared it to what was actually absorbed by each person. On average, the subjects got twice as much vitamin A from the papaya as they did from the kale even though the kale contained twice as much beta carotene, meaning that it was 4 times easier/more effective to get vitamin A from the papaya then from the kale. This clearly demonstrates that it is Not about how much of a nutrient a substance contains, but rather, how easily the body can absorb it and each species invariably does best with the natural diet that it’s body is particularly adapted to.”

For more information about Tanglewood Wellness Center and Loren Lockman please visit → https://tanglewoodwellnesscenter.com/

Did You See ASU’s New Sustainable Gear ?  was originally published in VeganNation on Medium, where people are continuing the conversation by highlighting and responding to this story.