Natalie Portman, Bill Clinton, Ellen DeGeneres, Alicia Silverstone, Alanis Morissette, and many other celebrities have endorsed the plant based diet.
All of them went vegan for different reasons, but they all swear by the diet that helped them change their life.
Now, I might not be a celebrity, but I can also give you some tips on the plant based diet. Specifically, the pros and cons, how to get started, and leave you with enough info so you can decide whether the diet is right or wrong for you.
You know I love pros and cons of every diet, and I check them out before I try anything. For the plant based diet, I’ve tried it, and I will share my experience with you.
Starting off with the advantages of the plant based diet. Let’s get to it.
- A plant based diet will help you lose some weight quickly, and healthy. Now, you will still get almost the same amounts of calories. But the difference is you are not getting calories from animal products, which automatically restricts you from sugars and fats. Note, fruits have sugar, but not as much
- Because plant based diet is low in saturated fat and free of cholesterol, it can be beneficial for conditions like hypertension or high blood pressure, heart disease, digestive disease and obesity
- Plant based diet helps you lower your cholesterol because it is rich in fiber and low in sugar. This way, you can easily maintain a healthy blood glucose and insulin level in your body.
As with every diet, for every advantage, there is a disadvantage, and it is up to you to weigh in.
- Plant based diet completely removes animal products from your menu. This includes lean meat and dairy products. Now, it might sound easy to remove them, but believe me, it is hard
- Planning, planning and even more planning. In order to get all your daily requirements from a plant based diet, you really need to plan ahead. I mean really, really plan ahead. If you do not plan it correctly, you run the risk of getting fewer than recommended doses of vitamins, minerals and protein
- Iron deficiency and anemia are a common condition that people trying plant based diet suffer. Now, that doesn’t mean it can happen to you, but as I mentioned, you really need to plan ahead to meet your iron levels
- Plant based diet results in lower muscle creatine concentration, which is why athletes like sprinters cannot follow. The sole purpose of creatine, which is an animal protein is to provide energy for the muscles.
How to Add Healthy Nutrients
Now, after you’ve taken a look at the pros and cons of plant based diet, and you’ve decided to give it a go, I feel like it is my responsibility to help you through it. Therefore, I will suggest several alternatives to animal food.
Let’s start with the hardest one, healthy meat alternatives. Make sure to add edamame beans, tempeh, seitan, and tofu to your meals. When you are looking at soy products, make sure they are organic, as some commercial beans are genetically engineered.
Legumes will become your best friend when you opt for plant based diet, as they can be the base for your lunch, dinner and breakfast. Hummus and French lentils are my two favorites, as they are both easy to cook and can be mixed with everything else. For example, you can layer humus with tomatoes, cucumbers, and sprouts. French lentils can be combined with greens and cherry tomatoes.
Last, but not least, get a food processor or a blender, since you will need it. Smoothies are your best way to get tons of veggies and fruits for either breakfast or dinner. I prefer to get fruits for breakfast while vegetables for dinner.