Saturday, 27 July 2013

4 food groups of the plant based diet

Since I have gone on a plant based diet, I am often asked "what do you eat"? There seems to be a misconception among some people that vegans and plant basers have very little food to eat. But this is furthest from the truth. There are an abundance of plant based food that is available to consume. Think about this - you can only find 4-5 different kinds of meat yet hundreds of different plant based foods at your local supermarket.

So what do I eat? I eat from 4 different food groups. Fruits, vegetables, whole grains and legumes. Major killers such as heart disease, cancer and stroke have been greatly reduced among people consuming foods from only these 4 groups.

In the fruit group we have many familiar options such as apples, oranges, berries, bananas, grapes, melons, apricots, cherries, mango, kiwi, papaya, pears, pineapples, and plums to name a few.

In the vegetable group we have favorites such as kale, chard, broccoli, beets, asparagus, avocado, cabbage, cauliflower, carrots, celery, corn, cucumber, eggplant, green beans, lettuce, peas, peppers, spinach, potatoes, and tomatoes. There are many others as well. 

With whole grains you have your barley, brown rice, corn, buckwheat, oats, quinoa, wheat, amaranth, whole grain breads, whole grain pasta, bran and many others.

And with legumes you have your lentils, red kidney beans, peas, chick peas, black beans, northern beans, white kidney beans, lima beans, black eyed peas, pinto beans, navy beans, pink beans, tofu, soybeans, tempeh, nuts, and seeds such as flax and chia.

So you see? People on a whole food plant based diet have so many different foods they can choose from. And when you combine various foods from these groups you can create a very happy plate and a very healthy person! 

With these foods you will be getting many vitamins and nutrients such as fiber, protein, iron, calcium, zinc, b vitamins, omega 3, vitamin A and C, potassium, and anti-oxidants. 

You will be lowering your risk of getting hypertension, heart disease, eye disease,  certain cancers, stroke, type 2 diabetes, obesity, lung disease, bone loss, chronic inflammation, and high cholesterol. 

Bottom line - going on a whole food plant based diet is the best way to get healthy and help prevent so many ailments that are plaguing millions of people. It all starts with the food you decide to eat. You have the choice. Think of food as the greatest preventive medicine there is in the world today. 

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