9 Foods For A Healthy Vegan Diet
WHAT IS A VEGAN DIET?
A Vegan diet is a diet which deals only in natural products that are grown in nature and are meant for human consumption without harming a living being’s existence. It is also known as Veganism and it strictly avoids all forms of animal products ranging from meat, eggs to dairy products in food as well clothing or any other daily life purpose.
Itis one of the most trending diets worldwide. People, who are sensitive towards animal rights, are concerned towards the depreciating environment issues, follow religions that strictly avoid no harm to animals and teach non-violent human ethics generally pick up the vegan diet.
Apart from these people who have specific reasons for following this diet, many fitness freaks and people allergic to animal products choose to follow this diet since it also provides an end number of health benefits.
HEALTH BENEFITS OF A VEGAN DIET
Vegan diets are known to have a lot of health benefits; here are some of the sciences proven benefits:
- A vegan diet is very rich in fiber, potassium, antioxidants, plant compounds, vitamins A, C and E.
- A Vegetarian diet can help in shedding extra weight and getting rid of obesity which is the mother of all diseases. Plant based food items have been proven to help people get rid of extra fat, burn fat etc since they tend to decrease the calorie intake.
- These diets are known to help in lower blood sugar levels and improve kidney functions, it also helps keeping in check fluctuations in diabetes.
- Studies show that a properly planned vegan diet can help in curing and preventing some rare types of cancers and stop the further spread of cancerous cells in the body.
- It is a well proven fact that a vegan diet can reduce risk factors related to genetic diseases and old age side effects.
- It also limits the risk factors related to heart diseases, kidney diseases, diseases related to the abdomen, arthritis etc.
- Plant protein is considered to be better than animal protein. It helps in preventing heart diseases and type 2 diabetes.
- Veganism releases dopamine which brings a wave of calmness and relaxation into the body and makes it stress free.
MOST COMMON VEGETARIAN DIETS
A Vegan diet can be considered a plant based diet. Food grains, fruits and vegetables, herbs and spices are the main vegan products. Also, there are varieties of vegan diets.
The most common vegan diets include:
- Raw food diet – It is a vegan diet based on raw food items. These raw foods can be raw fruits, raw vegetables, nuts, seeds, herbs etc.
- Whole food diet – It is a diet based on a wide variety of whole food products such as whole grains, legumes, pulses, nuts and seeds etc.
- Starch solution diet – It is a low fat and a high carb diet similar to that of Keto but it focuses on cooked items such as potato, rice, corn, peas etc.
- Raw till four diet – it is a special kind of diet in which the raw foods are consumed until 4 PM. Plant based cooked diet can be taken as dinner.
- Junk food diet – It is a vegan diet which focuses on mock meat, cheese, fries, vegan desserts and other processed food items.
- Thrive diets - It is a raw food vegan diet in which people consume plant based partially cooked raw whole foods.
- 80/10/10 – It is basically a low fat, raw food vegan diet mainly consisting of fruits.
MOST HEALTHY VEGAN FOODS
Here are some healthy vegan food items which must be a part of your daily platter:
The combination of these three seeds has the most important nutrients the body needs on a vegan diet. They contain the most essential amino acids which the body can't produce on its own but needs them for proper functioning. Chia and flax seeds are very rich in Omega 3 fatty acids. The use of Chia seeds also helps in getting rid of anxiety and depression which is a very common problem nowadays.
Legumes such as beans, lentils and peas are nutrient-rich plant diets that work as the best alternative to nutrients derived from animal products. Further sprouting, fermenting and proper cooking of the legumes can increase nutrient absorption power. Legumes are rich in fiber, slowly digested carbs, iron, folate, manganese, zinc, antioxidants and other healthy plant derived compounds.
Fermented plant foods are good sources of probiotic bacteria, which may help improve immune function and digestive health.They also contain vitamin K2, which may promote bone and dental health as well as help decrease the risk of heart disease and cancer
Seaweed is a protein-rich source of essential fatty acids. It is also rich in antioxidants and iodine, but should not be relied on as a source of vitamin B12. It contains magnesium, riboflavin, manganese, potassium, iodine and good amounts of antioxidants.The mineral iodine, in particular, plays crucial roles in your metabolism and in the function of your thyroid gland.
Olive Oil is the best addition to every possible diet ever. With the low Na (Sodium), K (Potassium)and P (Phosphorus) contents it has, it is very effective for the patients of renal problems. It contains a lot of healthy monounsaturated saturated fats which makes it the appropriate cooking oil for a kidney patient and otherwise for healthy people as well.
Whole grains and cereals are excellent sources of complex carbs, fiber, and iron, as well as B vitamins, magnesium, phosphorus, zinc and selenium.They are a mandatory addition to the regular vegan thali die to the abundant nutrients present in them.
Nuts, seeds and their byproducts are a great addition to any vegan diet.It is because 28-gram serving of nuts or seeds contains 5–12 grams of protein and it makes it a great alternative to protein-rich animal products.
Dieters should aim at increasing their intake of iron and calcium rich fruits and vegetables.This includes leafy greens such as bok choy, spinach, kale, broccoli, watercress and mustard greens. Turnip greens, artichokes and blackcurrants are also great options. Fruits and vegetables are very healthy and some of them can be used as alternatives for animal foods.However not all fruits and vegetables are recommended.
Tofu is created from the pressing of soybean curds and is a popular snack replacement for meats and processed foods.It can be eaten by sautéed, grilled or scrambled. It makes a nice alternative to eggs in recipes such as omelets, frittatas etc.It is rich in antioxidants and nutrients.
Thus, a vegan diet is a great diet to follow since it holds in itself the bounties of nature in abundance. Mostly all vegan food lists have the essential nutrients that the body needs for the smooth functioning in the absence of animal products. It is a great alternative towards going to a no harm policy for animals as well.
We wish you a great Veganism ahead