Plant-based, vegan, whole foods, vegetarian, diet, nutrition


Why Plant-Based?

Claire Oates

Imagine being able to increase your lifespan through diet alone… well, you just may be able to! Following a whole-food, plant-based diet can help you live longer, and could even lower your risk of heart disease by 29%!

So, what is a plant-based diet? Typically, these types of diets primarily consist of fruits and veggies, but they can also include nuts, seeds, oils, whole grains, legumes, and beans. Following a plant-based diet doesn’t necessarily mean you never eat meat or dairy. Instead, prioritize selecting the majority of your foods from plant sources for a more balanced diet.

The benefits of following a plant-based diet can include all of the following:

  • Increased intake of fiber, micronutrients, and antioxidants
  • Reduced risk of developing high cholesterol, high blood pressure and diabetes
  • Higher levels of polyphenols, which are important for maintaining the health of blood vessels, inhibiting the formation of clots, and providing protection from oxidative stress
  • Lowered levels of inflammation
  • Altered gut microbiome
  • Improved heart health
  • Maintenance of a healthy weight
  • Support for the immune system

While there are numerous benefits of following a plant-based diet, it is still important to consume well-balanced meals that provide adequate nutrition. This means avoiding highly processed foods, sugar, and “white” carbohydrates.

One of the most frequently asked questions about adopting a plant-based diet is, "How do you get your protein?" Fortunately, there is a wide variety of protein sources beyond meat, including lentils, beans, nuts, nut butter, edamame, whole grains, tofu, tempeh, and seeds. Even foods like artichokes, broccoli, cauliflower, peas, spinach, sweet potatoes, chard, nutritional yeast, and oatmeal provide smaller amounts of protein.

All you need to do is consume a well-balanced diet rich in a variety of plant proteins and you will meet all your protein needs!