Friday Favourites – Health benefits of a plant-based diet
Adopting a plant-based or vegan diet can work…at least for some people. Finding the right lifestyle diet for you is only successful if you are mindful to how your body reacts to foods, how you feel after each day including how you sleep.
I am fortunate enough to have a plant-based diet work for me however I know friends who have tried to follow a vegan diet and failed. This failure wasn’t due to lack of compassion it was failure to plan. When adopting a plant-based diet full time you need to follow three simple rules:
- Be 100% committed
- Spend time in the kitchen and know how to cook
- Be prepared
Not everyone can commit to a plant-based diet but everyone can commit to adding more plant-based foods into their diet to reap overall health benefits. Shifting to a more plant-based lifestyle is just not about the foods you eat but how it affects lifestyle and health.
A properly planned plant-based diet consists primarily of wholefoods and limiting and or eliminating the following:
- Refined sugar – strong links to obesity, diabetes and heart disease
- Refined grains – leads to rapid spikes in blood sugar, insulin resistance and weight gain
- Vegetable oils – increased inflammation and oxidative damage
- Trans Fats – Manmade fats found in processed foods and liked to heart disease
Combined with a higher consumption of fibre and micronutrient rich fruits and vegetables adding more plant-based foods to your diet can assist with you having one on the healthiest diets overall.
Our Friday favourites look at the powerful health benefits of a plant-based diet and what we think (& know) is the secret weapon of enhanced athlete performance.
A diet naturally low in saturated fat, high in fibre and rich in cancer-protective phytochemicals all help to prevent cancer.
Beating Heart disease
Animal products are the main source of saturated fat and the only source of cholesterol in a diet. By adopting a vege-tarian diet you avoid these risks and consume a diet higher in fibre and lower in fat.
Preventing and reversing diabetes
A diet low in fat and high in fibre and complex carbohydrates allows insulin to work more effectively and be better controlled through diet and exercise. Although it cannot eliminate the need for insulin for people with type 1 diabetes it can often reduce the amount of insulin used.
Lowering blood pressure
By cutting our or reducing meat, dairy products and added fats this helps reduce the blood’s viscosity which in turn helps bring blood pressure down.
Gallstones, kidney stones and osteoporosis
Excess protein has been linked to gallstones, kidney stones and osteoporosis due to protein causing the body to excrete ore calcium, oxalate and uric acid along with high-cholesterol, high-fat diets.
Source: Vegetarian Foods: Powerful for Health (pcrm.org)
Increasing your consumption of a plant-based diet or testing out the waters to adopting a plant-based diet full time is one of the greatest investments you can make in your health. As the saying goes ‘just eat real foods’.
To read more about the health benefits of a plant-based diet, visit out Health Benefits page.