Plant Based Diet For Beginners
Plant based diet means the diet that is obtained from the plant sources. This not only includes fruits and vegetables but also includes lots of nuts, seeds, oilseeds, legumes, beans, herbs and whole grains. It basically abstains from animal products like red meat, poultry, fish, eggs and dairy products. In the present day world the plant based products are flooding supermarket shelves. People having concerns about their health and environment are consuming less and less of meat and meat products and are focusing mainly on a plant based diet. Plant based diet are economically viable, ecologically sound and healthier than animal based products. So, they are gaining more popularities throughout the world these days.
Whole-Food Plant based Diet
Whole food referred to the foods that are not heavily processed. In other words we can say that whole foods are either unrefined or minimally refined. Plant based diet refers to diet that is free from meat, eggs, eggs or honey. Whole food plant based diet and vegan diets are overlapped but also have some key differences. Whole food plant based diet abstains the highly processed food and it includes the food that are close to nature but the vegan diet may also include highly processed food.
Also Read: Vegan Diet For Better Muscle Growth
Plant Based vs. Vegan Diet
While talking about the plant based diet, a most probable question that arouse in our mind is that whether it is vegan diet or vegetarian diet? There is some sort of confusion on this context as there is not an official definition of plant based diet. Some believe plant based diet as vegan diet. Some people also view it as mostly consuming plant based diet but occasionally consuming meat, fish, eggs and dairy products. Vegan diet strictly avoids the consumption of animal products like meat, poultry, seafood, eggs and dairy products whereas people following plant based diet may also consume this products. However plant based diet also avoids these products.
Let’s explore some terms related to plant based diet:
This is the strict form of plant based diet. This type of food habit abstain from taking any type of animal products. It nutshell we can say that people following vegan diet refuse to take red meat, poultry, fishes, sea foods, eggs and dairy products. Due to such type of strict food habit, some vegan people often explains vegetarian people as hypocrite. According to them, there is no correlation between the attitude and behavior of vegetarian people.
Vegetarian diets are not so strict as compared to vegan diets. People following vegetarian diet also takes eggs and dairy products but they abstains red meat, poultry, fish and seafood.
Semi-vegetarian or flexitarian:
Semi-vegetarian diets include eggs, dairy and occasionally meat, fish, seafood and poultry.
Tips To Follow Plant Based Diet For Beginners
If you are a beginner and highly interested in plant based diet, the following tips would be really helpful for you. Let’s may them your way of life.
1. Always choose easy options
Several companies provide pre-made plant-based options that may be either fresh or frozen. You can have such plant based pizzas, different types of meat substitutes, pasta and other plant based meals in grocery stores.
2. Invest in meal kits
Most of the meal companies also offer several kinds of plant based diet for vegan and vegetarian people. You can built connection with them and get your delicious meal delivered at your doorstep.
3. Integrate different kinds of vegetables with your diet
At least half of your plate must be covered with vegetables during lunch and dinner time. Always chose different colored vegetables for your diet.
4. Develop different attitudes towards meat
At first you have to develop positive attitude towards plant based diet. Gradually replace meat with other plant based products. You have to be clear in one things that the plant based diet cannot fulfill your nutritional requirement is nothing more than the misconception. A number of vegan bodybuilder and power lifter has disproven this faulty assumption.
5. Use alternatives for good fats
Olive oil, Nuts, Avocados and plant based butter may be the replacement of animal fat.
6. Also prefer salad as a base
Incorporate greens like spinach or lettuce as salads. You can also add variety of vegetables like fresh herbs, peas or beans.
Also Read: Benefits Of Being A Vegetarian
7. Eat fruit for dessert
Different types of ripe fruits like mango, apple, and strawberries can be consumed in the form of juice. They are mainly consumed after food as a dessert.
Does A Plant Based Diet Boost Your Health?
Yes, plant based diet are good for our health. They boost up our immune system and prevents from many chronic and zoonotic diseases. Many scientific researches has proven that chronic diseases can be prevented or controlled by following the plant based diet. One study conducted in the China shows that plant based diet reduces the risk of type-2 diabetes, heart diseases, and certain types of cancer. It also reduces the weight gain, improves energy level in the body, reduced inflammation and promotes sound health.
Are Plant Based Diet Better For Environment?
Plant based diet are also good for environment. This means that there positive impacts extends beyond our health. As we know that raising animal for food source is absolutely inefficient utilization of resources in comparison to production of plant based products. A study conducted in 2018 revealed that livestock sector only provides 18 percent of calories consumed globally but it utilizes about 83 percent of farmland. Livestock sector is often associated greater emission as compared to plant based diet. So, consumption of plant based diet is one thing that we can do for the betterment of our environment. Hence, consumption of plant based diet is a way to mitigate the growing climate and hence thereby reduces the growing impact of global warming in various sector.
Cons Of Plant Based Diet For Beginners
Plant based diet fail to supply all the nutrient required by our body. If not properly planned, it may lead to the nutritional deficiency. So, need to add supplement in your diet for fulfillment of deficiency. Consumption of similar type of food for long duration may create monotonous effect.
Popular Five Food Groups Of Plant Based Diet For Beginners
You can enjoy variety of plant based products. Fruits, vegetables, legumes, whole grains are the main plant based products that we have in our diet. Following are the most popular five food groups that are enjoyed in plant based diet. Let’s have a quick look over them and have excel over them:
You can enjoy variety of fruits as per your preferences. These fruits are good sources of vitamins and other nutrients. You can have fruits like Apple, Citrus fruits, Pomegranate, bananas, grapes, strawberries, etc.
Tubers are rich source of starch. They would supply you plenty of energy. Potatoes, Sweet potatoes, Yams and Cassava can be consumed as tuber crops as per your preferences. These food crops should be integrated with other plant based products.
You can enjoy plenty of vegetables as per your preferences. Green leafy vegetable can boost your immune system and supply adequate amount of vitamin A to your body. Cabbage, Cauliflower, carrot, radish, spinach, lettuce etc. are the vegetables that you can have in your diet.
4. Whole grains
Whole grains refers to the plant products that are less processed or unrefined or partially refined. Grains, cereals and other starches in whole form including quinoa, oats, whole wheat and popcorn can be consumed as the whole grains. These are the rich source of carbohydrates. Whole grains are good for our health because they provide variety of nutrients like Iron, vitamin B, Magnesium, Phosphorous, Zinc, Copper and Selenium. They are also rich source of fiber and protein.
Legumes are the rich source of proteins. So, you cannot avoid them in your diet. Beans are the excellent sources of proteins that you can enjoy in the form of legumes. Lentil, other pulses can be integrated in your diet. While visiting the grocery store, don’t forget to bring following legumes:
✓Dry peas including split green and yellow as well as whole green and yellow
✓ Canned and dry beans
✓ Peanut butter
Besides these five groups, you can enjoy plenty of other foods including nuts, seeds, whole-grain, flour etc. Since these are calorie enriched diet, so consume only in the moderate quantity.
Plant based diet are not only good for our health but are also beneficial for environment. Plant based diet refers to the diet that abstains from taking animal products like meat, fishes, eggs and other dairy products. It also includes lots of nuts, seeds, oilseeds, legumes, beans and whole grains. Fruits, tubers, vegetables, Legumes and whole grains are most popular five categories of plant based diet. As a beginner you must have to develop different attitude towards meat and gradually replace meat and meat products from your diet and incorporate more and more fruits and vegetables and make your life more healthy and prosperous. As plant based diet are less expensive than meat products you can have better savings.