A Complete Guide To Plant Based Diet
- 30 Jun, 2020
There isn’t any fixed diet which is proven to be best for humankind. Every individual is susceptible to a certain lifestyle and changing your whole diet plan could be harmful for you or not suit you.Being vegetarian or vegan is completely different from a plant based diet.
Plant based eating has been in existence since ages but became popular in the latest era. It is a wellness trend which influences the food choices of a person. The major benefit with the plant based diet is that it is majorly unprocessed.
Unprocessed food products contain all the natural macronutrients and are healthy for the body metabolism. Plant based food products are generally unprocessed and stimulate weight loss and health.
Those who believe that being a vegan or on a plant based diet could be the only way you could lose weight then it is wrong. Plant based diet plans focus on the long term health benefits rather than short term weight loss.
Plant centric lifestyle can also reduce the risk factors of many chronic diseases such as diabetes and heart diseases. It also improves immunity and decreases the inflammation level.
But starting with a new diet plan can be a little difficult considering the fact that you can’t get adapted with the new diet plan overnight. This article will clear your doubts about all the factors of plant based diet.
PLANT BASED DIET
Many times we confuse plant diet with the vegan diet but there are very few people who know that vegan diet and plant based diet are not identical.
Vegan diet is when a dieter prohibits the consumption of any kind of animal products which includes meat, poultry, fish and dairy. It also inhibits the intake of honey and gelatin. Basically, we can state that a vegan diet can be plant based, but a plant based is not vegan.
Whereas, a plant based diet includes all the foods that come from plants, it may be vegetables, fruits, tubers, grains, legumes, nuts and seeds. You can either go fully plant based or can be dependent on just plants.
Plant based diet is more of a lifestyle because it depends on a person of how frequently they consume animal products. It is always stated that you can either prohibit the consumption or limit it.You are also supposed to induce the restrictions on added sugars or refined food products.
Plant based also focuses on the balanced diet. The diet plan should be made in such a way that it must include all the macronutrients in an adequate amount.
PLANT BASED DIET – HEALTHY FOR WEIGHT LOSS?
Now the main question which arises is will a plant based diet be healthy or not?
The classic method to go on with the plant based diet is to stick to the basic food products. The plant food products should not be processed or refined. Instead use fresh plants and food products from them.
Natural beans and legumes can be stocked up at home. Even the frozen food is considered to be healthy enough.
Plant based dietary food is also healthy for the increment of the weight for long term. Obesity has always been a major concern all over the world. It is obvious that dietary changes or shifting to a plant based diet other than high carbohydrate one can induce weight loss and leave a long lasting impact.
Plant dietary food products are rich in fiber and contribute towards the exclusion of the processed foods. Thus, it also helps in reduction of a few more pounds of your weight.
Plant based diet initially focuses on the inhibition of all the processed and refined products and also all of the food which has added sugars. This itself contributes in benefitting the health with the additional advantage of weight loss.
HOW TO START THE DIET?
There is always a procedure which is required to follow before starting any diet. Plant based diets could miss on to many types of macronutrients. It is better to calculate the amount of macronutrients. Make sure to avoid deficiency of any kind of macronutrient.
Never miss your breakfast – Start with the little change but keep in mind that you cannot miss your breakfast. It is the most crucial meal because it lets you carry on with the whole day metabolism. Include an adequate amount of protein, carbohydrate and vitamins in the meal. You can add spinach, banana, coconut cream smoothie and a bowl of oatmeal with the fruit toppings.
Breakfast should always be the first step for the transformation. After that you can start with the changes in lunch and then dinner. Gradual changes can be adapted easily and will be manageable as well.
You must remember that a plant based diet shouldn’t be just a dietary plan but also a lifestyle.
Adequate amount of proteins – Skipping the meat can be easy to say but to manage the room for proteins can be a typical task. In a plant based diet, it becomes difficult to manage the adequate amount of proteins.
You can incorporate protein in your diet by consuming beans, legumes, tofu, nuts and seeds. Considering the fact that you are new to the plant based diet, in initial days you can have a small serving of meat and start reducing it as days go by.
You will have to keep renewing the diet plan every week so that you don’t get bored of it and there is change in the cycle of the nutrient levels.
Be careful with the carbohydrates – Carbohydrates are never too good for the body. Sticking to a plant based diet has a major goal to prohibit you to any kind of processed and packaged food.
The major carbohydrate source in your diet should be whole grains, avocados, brown rice, quinoa, oats, and sweet potatoes and so on. They are those carbohydrates which are complex in nature and require your body a longer time to break down those.
This satiety level will help you to exercise more without the need of meat for energy and glucose.Health foods such as crackers, cereals, granola bars and yogurts are considered to be protein rich but are unhealthy and are filled with refined oils, flour and sugar. They can be used as a treat or dessert but are not advised by the nutritionists.
Cut down on fats – Fat is one macronutrient which can fulfill your satiety level to the utmost. Plant based fats are great for health because they do not contain saturated or Trans fats.
If cooked with olive or avocado oil, they can be healthier for roasting of nuts and seeds.
Plant based dietary products have one more benefit that it increases the amount of good cholesterol in the body that means there is a specific amount of increase in HDL cholesterol in the body.
Have variations in your diet – As you keep on increasing the intensity of the plant based diet, it is obvious to be bored of the monotonous lifestyle. You can incorporate tofu and any other plant based food products which might seem fancy.
Make sure that your variations are rich in vitamins and minerals. It is important to have a diet rich in all macronutrients.
It will also be interesting to observe that after you are all into plant based diet food, you start to crave for the natural, highly processed treats or packaged items.
To avoid that you can have an interchanging diet plans so that you are not stuck with one kind of food for a longer period. It will also help you to change the nutrient needs according to the new changes in body metabolism.
Have go-to snacks – Having a plant based diet could be a little dicey for the increment of your satiety level. It is important that you keep certain light food items in your refrigerator.You can also keep sweet potato as your snack. It will help you to feel full and will also reduce the need of having packaged snacks
Have will-power – It might take a little time for you to notice changes in your body and lifestyle. You must at least give your body 30 days to perform in a righteous way.In three to four weeks, the dairy products in your body will be eliminated and your body will start reducing the inflammation.
SEVEN DAYS SAMPLE DIET PLAN
Breakfast: Oatmeal based meal and berries and walnuts on side
Lunch: Salad prepared with fresh vegetables, chickpeas, avocados, hemp seeds, pumpkin seeds
Dinner: Sweet potato and black bean burritos
Snack: Zucchini or banana chips
Breakfast: Fruit salad made up of strawberries, shredded coconut and pumpkin seeds and banana on the side.
Lunch: Hummus and veggie wrap
Dinner: Zucchini noodles tossed in pesto
Snack: Cashew yogurt with berries
Breakfast: A smoothie made up of coconut milk, berries, peanut butter and plant based protein powder with a fruit on the side.
Lunch: Salad made up with quinoa, veggie and feta
Dinner: Plant based butternut squash curry
Snack: Hummus wrap
Breakfast: Tofu and vegetable frittata
Lunch: Cauliflower rice with vegetables on side or mixed
Dinner: Black bean burgers served with sliced avocados
Snack: Roasted chickpeas with cucumber and onion
Breakfast: Tofu scramble
Lunch: Tomato basil soup
Dinner: Veggie topped pizza
Snack: Blackberry, kale, cashew butter and coconut smoothie
Breakfast: Dairy free yogurt with berries and granola bars
Lunch: Avocado toasts
Dinner: Whole wheat pasta with roasted tomatoes
Snack: Almonds and cashews
Breakfast: Oatmeal with avocado, salsa and black beans with almond milk on side
Lunch: Roasted vegetables and tahini quinoa bowl
Dinner: Kale and tofu curry
Snack: Whole wheat toast topped with peanut butter
BENEFITS OF PLANT BASED FOOD DIET
Plant based food diets have been known for the benefits it has. In earlier sections it has been explained that plant based dietary plan is helpful for weight loss management as well. Except that there are many other diseased conditions which can be cured or prevented.
The most important and proven benefit of the plant based meal plan is that it keeps your heart healthy.A study has been conducted which has proven the fact that the healthy plant based diet can prevent the risk of any kind of heart disease.
But it is also noticed that if you consume unhealthy meals which includes any kind of sugary drink can increase the risk. It all depends on what quality of food you consume.
Researches have also proven the fact that plant based diet can help in the prevention of certain cancers.It has helped the people for the prevention of gastrointestinal and colorectal cancers.
The major symptom of Alzheimer's is the cognitive decline in the patients. The plant based diet can help to slow down the decline.Plants are rich in antioxidants which also slows the progression of the disease and ultimately reverses all the cognitive deficits. It not just reverses the impairment but also prevents the further damage in the brain.
If you have diabetes in your genes then it is important to take care from the very early age. Diabetes can be prevented by the consumption of certain fruits and vegetables.It improves the blood sugar balance in the body by maintaining the metabolism of the body.
CONS OF PLANT BASED DIET
There are certain cons to the plant based diet which can also be reversed by the implementation of certain important food products in the diet or by incorporating supplements in your diet.
Some of the drawbacks of the diet plan are:
It is true for a fact that non vegetarians have many sources of proteins and vegans or plant based dieters don’t. You can inculcate food sources such as avocados, legumes in your diet which can fill the shoes of meat.
Nutritionists may also advise you to take unsweetened no added sugar protein powder supplement with your smoothie.
Red meat is the best option if you are anemic or have low heme iron. Although there are plant based foods which can help you to increase iron in your body but they do not absorb in the body.
Before iron deficiency takes a drastic turn you must start with the iron supplements or the food products which are rich in iron.
VITAMIN B12 DEFICIENCY
Egg, beef, turkey and all the seafood are rich in vitamin B12 which is strictly prohibited. There might be chances that you might get deficient of it.
Deficiency of Vitamin B12 can make an irreversible change in the body that is why it is either advised to stop the diet or start taking supplements.
You must remember that supplements do not have any side effects on the body.
DECREASE IN FATTY ACID INTAKE
It is true that you must avoid all the foods which contain fatty acid but avoiding all those food products can lead to decline in fatty acid in the body.
It might lead to the stoppage of the formation of good cholesterol that is HDL. To continue with that it is advised to keep fatty acid food sources in the diet which are healthy as well.This also increases the risk of heart diseases and also risk of type 2 diabetes.
So, this is all about the plant based diet. Despite all of these drawbacks, a plant based diet has been proven to be the easiest form of diet to remain healthy. It is cost effective and also very easy to get. It doesn’t even require extra efforts in cooking.If you are considering changing your meal plans then you must start preparing your grocery list.