Plant-based eating patterns focus on foods primarily from plants. This includes fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, oils, whole grains, legumes, and beans.
What is a plant-based diet and why should you try it?
Plant-based eating patterns focus on foods primarily from plants. This includes fruits, vegetables, nuts, seeds, oils, whole grains, legumes, and beans. What most people think in a plant-based diet is that you are “vegetarian” , that's not the case - you still eat meat and dairy, but rather you are proportionately choosing more of your food from plant sources.
Having a plant based diet has not only many health benefits but can substantially improve carbon emissions within the environment. So not only are you benefiting from this sort of diet, but the environment benefits as well.
A recent report for the IPCC states that projections for the future show that “ vegetarian diets or plant-based diets were associated with the greatest reductions in greenhouse-gas emissions.” A global shift to a plant-based diet could reduce mortality and greenhouse gases caused by food production by 10% and 70%, respectively, by 2050.
Plant-based diets offer all the necessary protein, fat, carbs, vitamins and minerals optimal for a stronger health.
Here are 8 ways for you to get started with your plant-based diet:
Eat lots of vegetables. Fill half your plate with vegetables at lunch and dinner. Make sure you include plenty of colors in choosing your vegetables. Enjoy vegetables as a snack with hummus, salsa, or guacamole.
Change the way you think about meat. Have smaller amounts. Use it as a garnish instead of a centerpiece.
Choose good fats. Fats in olive oil, olives, nuts and nut butters, seeds, and avocados are particularly healthy choices.
Cook a vegetarian meal at least one night a week. Build these meals around beans, whole grains, and vegetables.
Include whole grains for breakfast. Start with oatmeal, quinoa, buckwheat, or barley. Then add some nuts or seeds along with fresh fruit.
Go for greens. Try a variety of green leafy vegetables such as kale, collards, Swiss chard, spinach, and other greens each day. Steam, grill, braise, or stir-fry to preserve their flavor and nutrients.
Build a meal around a salad. Fill a bowl with salad greens such as romaine, spinach, Bibb, or red leafy greens. Add an assortment of other vegetables along with fresh herbs, beans, peas, or tofu.
Eat fruit for dessert. A ripe, juicy peach, a refreshing slice of watermelon, or a crisp apple will satisfy your craving for a sweet bite after a meal.
There are many resources that can help you on this journey and inspire you to have a more plant-based diet - Learn more
“If we collectively adopt a more plant-based diet we could reduce the equivalent of up to 8 gigatons of carbon dioxide per year.”