A healthy plant-based diet is extremely beneficial for your mental and physical being. It is essential to know that a good lifestyle and the right diet choice can make a vast difference in your day to day activities. It is not just healthy for you, but a vegan diet is healthy for the environment as well!
Just to keep up with demand- Currently, our farmers are producing in billions of poultry and cattle farms. That not only are releasing mass amounts of methane (a greenhouse gas) into the environment but the animals are also kept in horrible conditions to keep up with the high milk and meat demands of the population.
While a plant-based diet can be healthy for you, people still shy away from changing their life choices! This is mostly due to a lack of understanding about the proper meal plans, portions, and how to entirely replace meat in their lifestyles.
It is also essential to know that a vegan diet does not always mean healthy! A plate of French fries would qualify as vegan, but if you have that every day- it is certainly not healthy. This is also is why a plant-based diet should be based on smart decisions that control your nutrition and portion along the way.
What is a plant-based diet?
Most people who are trying to know more about plant-based diets are confused at the first step- what is a plant-based diet? Well as the name speaks for itself, a plant-based diet is when a meal consists of components which come entirely from plants.
Some components of a plant-based diet could be:
- Nuts (Includes cashews and pistachios etc.)
- Vegetables (Different greens like broccoli or cabbage!)
- Legumes (different kind of pulses)
- Grains (wheat, oats, rice, or even corn!)
- Fruits (The variety is endless, enjoy mangoes or even papayas)
A plant-based diet does not include products that are derived from animals. This can consist of cow/goat milk, different kinds of animal meats and the fat that is usually used to make cooking oil and Ghee.
Health Benefits of a Plant-Based Diet
There are countless health benefits of a vegan diet, especially when it comes to our body. It keeps us physically fit and contributes to our immune system more than a non-vegetarian meal would. Not only that, but it can treat chronic illnesses, as well.
This is why if our population started to move towards a plant-based diet, it could possibly remove the huge burden that our healthcare systems are currently under. It can further help the millions of people that have cardiovascular diseases, are dealing with obesity, diabetes, and cholesterol on a day to day basis.
A vegan diet can help reduce these risk factors and improve overall health! Moreover, it produces a positive externality for the environment and the economy as well. If you are looking to make this change in your lifestyle, here is why you should!
1. Weight Management
One of the primary benefits of a plant-based diet is how it helps with weight control and management. With plants, the food you consume is not calorie-dense. In fact, you can enjoy larger portions without having too much calorie intake.
It also fulfills your nutrition requirement. Vegetables and fruits are packed full of antioxidants, fiber, and all kinds of vitamins. In addition to this, legumes and nuts are rich in protein content and can easily replace meat in your diet.
You feel fulfilled as well as do not have to worry about rising fat levels or cholesterol build up in your body. It can help lose weight as well as provide a healthy diet for a workout as well. People who exercise daily make use of oats, almond milk, and hempseed supplements for their protein requirement.
2. Better Cardiovascular Health
As mentioned earlier, one of the vegan diet benefits is how it can treat chronic illnesses. One of which includes ischemic heart disease. A plant-based diet can really control your cholesterol levels and in general, is good for heart health.
People who consume a vegan diet have a lower risk of developing heart-related illnesses in their late 40s and early 50s. In addition, 73% of People who had a plant-based diet experience a decrease in coronary events, and overall, 70% of People have faced a reduction in mortality rates.
This much evidence is sufficient enough to deduce how there is a direct and positive relationship between having a plant-based diet and your heart's health. You do not have to worry about a buildup of cholesterol and fatty tissues in your arteries either.
Moreover, it reduces the risk of a heart attack and also makes your heart keep up with your day to day activities as well. A healthy and active lifestyle is the way to go, and this is your first step towards it.
3. Controls Blood Pressure
Blood pressure can be tricky to control. It can rise due to any kind of food and may get lowered if you haven't had a proper diet in a while. It is not only risky but is also a silent killer of people. However, one of the greatest solutions to controlling blood pressure is a plant-based diet!
A vegan diet, according to the Dietary Guideline Committee, can lower your systolic blood pressure. This research was announced in 2010, after which many blood pressure patients make use of vegan ingredients in their meals.
This is good for patients who are having blood thinners on the daily. Patients usually ingest a high amount of medication to control their cholesterol and blood pressure. Although changing your diet is a much more natural method that will improve your heart health as well as lower the risk of strokes.
4. Prevents Early on-set Diabetes
One of the major benefits of vegan diets is how it prevents diabetes. Many research findings show that consuming a vegan diet can almost half the risk of developing diabetes and further improve your insulin sensitivity as well.
Moreover, it was shown that non-vegetarians had 74% more risk of developing diabetes as compared to those with vegetarian diets. Currently, millions of people worldwide are affected by diabetes and are trying to look for effective methods that can control their blood sugar levels.
Patients keep returned to insulin, which is a very expensive drug in certain countries and can put them into debt. A plant-based diet is a natural alternative and a cost-efficient method of controlling your blood sugar without having to break the bank.
5. Lower rate of obesity
In states like Mexico and the United States, obesity is on the rise. This is also why plant-based diets are even more essential in the 21st century. It helps support the immunity and boosts a person’s metabolism.
An excellent medicine an obese patient can be prescribed is - a healthy plant-based diet. It is not only nutritious is not calorie-dense either. It replaces fats in your diet and makes sure that you do not consume and an unhealthy level of carbohydrates and saturated fats.
6. The low Mortality rate in Humans
Overall a plant-based diet can lower mortality rates it improves cardiovascular health. It is shown that 29% of vegetarians have a reduced risk of ischemic heart disease. It can prevent many chronic diseases and is also good for the environment.
Inevitably what is good for the environment is in turn good for us humans. It is reducing the burden on our healthcare systems and prevents many ailments. In addition to this, increased consumption of meat causes strain on reproductive development and hormonal disbalance.
It can also cause an excess of uric acid in people and Gout. It is better to start replacing meat little by little in your meals if not entirely altogether. It can increase the longevity of your life and keep you hearty and healthy!
Plant Diets and the Environment
One of the primary reasons that people should convert to a plant-based diet is not just for themselves but how it is contributing massively to the environment. Currently, the demand for meat and poultry is so excessively high that it is allowing farmers and breeders to clear colossal areas of land and build cattle farms.
There are a cow, sheep, lamb, and poultry farms where the poor animals have no proper hygienic living conditions. They also make use of steroids and different hormones that are injected into these animals. So, they grow up to be a lot more ‘meatier.' Hens and cows are not what they used to be twenty years ago. Moreover, cattle are impregnated for their milk to keep up with their high demand.
In the 21st century, there are alternatives to all animal products. Different kinds of almond milk and soymilk are not only nutritionally beneficial but delicious as well. You can easily replace meat in your diet with eating protein and carbohydrate-rich legumes and nuts.
There is also the problem of excessive greenhouse gases being released into the environment. Cattle farms are the largest producers of methane. It is a greenhouse gas that is actively depleting our ozone layer, causing global warming.
A Vegan Diet is cost Effective.
Another great personal benefit that comes from being shifting to a vegan diet is how it is much more cost-effective. You can save a lot more money as compared to purchasing meat every day. Lamb mutton or chicken can cost more than cabbage and a few spices.
It is not just healthy but will also make a significant impact on your budget as well. If you're looking how to cut down costs and be healthy as well then, a plant-based diet is something you were looking for and should start right away!
Plant-based diets benefits are incomparable to the cost. It has worthy effects it has on your mental and physical wellbeing!
Will, it cut down on your nutrition?
Many people assume that eating vegetables and fruit is not as fulfilling as eating meat. However, it is the exact opposite. Plants are usually not calorie-dense, which means that it can give you the nutritional value you were supposed to get and fill you up.
On the other hand, a calorie intake as compared to small steak plants offers different vegetable fruits nuts that are rich in protein, fibers, potassium, magnesium, zinc, and vitamins. You get all your essential food groups as well as a proper diet that will keep you healthy and active.
Plant-based meal plans for beginners.
A plant-based meal plan is easy to delve into with the right mindset and can give amazing results as well. Many hotels and restaurants now offer vegan options which are not only nutritious but also delicious. Understanding the basics of vegan cooking involves familiarizing oneself with versatile staples such as Tofu, Cabbage, Kale, and other types of leafy greens.
You do not need to give a large portion of your budget to food. Vegetables are much more organic and readily available. You can also enjoy fruits as dessert. Having one piece of papaya or cantaloupe can give you all the sweetness you need.
Moreover, the world of salads is never-ending. An excellent vegan Russian salad with cucumber, apples, and pineapples is a great and healthy snack to have from time to time. The creativity with vegan dishes has no limits!
Online recipes are readily available, and you can custom create your own plant-based diet meal plan! It is not like you will miss out on anything. There are vegan recipes for cookies, milkshakes, protein supplements, and your day to day meals but with healthier plant-based ingredients.
You also start with little changes like switching to a vegetable cooking oil instead of animal-based cooking oil. It has healthier fats, and you do not have to worry about clogged arteries when you cook something up for yourself!