Plant-based Diet? 7 Foods to Start Eating More of Today

Processed foods that are filled with refined sugar, excess sodium and unhealthy fats place us all at risk for chronic health conditions such as heart disease, stroke, cancer and diabetes.

Poor nutrition is one of the things we can change right away to prevent the development and severity of chronic diseases.

The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetic states the following in their position paper on Vegetarian or Plant-Based diets:

“Vegetarian diets, including total vegetarian or vegan diets, are healthful, nutritionally adequate, and may provide health benefits  in the prevention and treatment of certain diseases… Well-planned  vegetarian diets are appropriate for individuals during all stages of the life cycle, including pregnancy, lactation, infancy, childhood, adolescence, and for athletes.”

7 Plant-Based Foods to Start Eating More of Today

A well-balanced plant-based diet is composed of:

  1. vegetables – filled with fiber, potassium, magnesium, iron, folate, and vitamins C and A (almost all of these nutrients run low in the North American population)
  2. fruits
  3. whole-grains – adding whole grains to a meal helps with feeling full, energy
  4. legumes – are an excellent source of lysine, fiber, calcium, iron  zinc, and selenium (consume one to one-and-a-half cups of legumes per day)
  5. herbs
  6. spices
  7. nuts and seeds (small amount) – contain essential fats, protein, fiber, vitamin E, and plant sterols, and have been shown to promote cardiovascular health, protect against type 2 diabetes and obesity, macular degeneration, and cholelithiasis. 1 to 2 oz of of nuts per day is recommended.

Pasta penne with tomato and rucola

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