Consider going plant-based
Why 🌱 plant-based?
“Plant-based” can be used as a catch-all term, but at its heart it means eating foods from plants and fungi and avoiding animal products including meat, dairy and eggs. Eating a plant-based diet is considered to be an optimally healthy diet for humans at all stages of life, from babies to the elderly, and even includes during pregnancy. Many of our top causes of death and ill-health in the US, including high blood pressure, diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and obesity are at least partially due to diets that are over concentrated in animal-based products.
The industrial farming system supplies the vast majority of the animal products available to US consumers. This industry is not only cruel to animals, but also degrades the environment both directly and indirectly by affecting soil quality and water systems, through deforestation, and others. I encourage you to take steps toward improving the health of people, animals and the environment by focusing on consuming plants.
Here are some tips to help you and your family move toward a plant-based diet:
Emphasize WFPB (whole foods plant-based). This doesn’t mean you can only shop at Whole Foods. Instead, aim to eat a wide variety of unprocessed and home-prepared fruits, vegetables, legumes, grains, nuts and seeds. Humans can thrive on a well-balanced plant-based diet and avoid many common diseases.
Replace animal products with plants. I love taking traditional recipes and making simple replacements. Some examples are replacing ground meats with lentils, beef patties in a burger with portobello mushrooms, parmesan cheese with nutritional yeast, and eggs in baked goods with a mixture of ground flax and water. Get creative!
Purchase or grow local, seasonal food. Enjoy the tastes of the season by centering your meals around what is locally fresh and available. Take advantage of the many farms and farmer’s markets in the area. This step can also help you minimize waste.
Supplement as appropriate. Although you can consume a majority of the necessary vitamins and minerals from a plant-based diet, it’s important to supplement as needed. Many people who live in colder climates, like New England, don’t get enough vitamin D from sun exposure and food alone, and the majority of Americans do not intake sufficient B12 whether they eat meat or not.
Check out some of my favorite recipes: