Three tips to make going plant-based easy

Jul 19th, 2018 | By | Category: Food and Nutrition, Healthy Living

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Switching from a conventional diet to a plant-based one may seem daunting, but with just a few simple changes, you’ll be eating healthier, more satisfying foods before you know it.

A plant-based diet can have multiple health benefits, including reduced cholesterol, lower blood pressure, increased energy and better blood sugar levels. It can also be more economical, especially if you eat local and in-season, as well as good for the environment.

The focus is on consuming mainly fruits, vegetables, legumes and whole grains. Animal products are consumed only in small amounts, if at all. There is no right or wrong way to go plant-based, but you can try it out using these quick tips.

Go at your own pace. You’re not competing with anyone, so think baby steps. For starters, aim to make 75 per cent of your daily meals plant-based. Going cold turkey — or cold tofurkey, in this case — may make you feel hungry more often at first, as plant-based foods are more quickly digestible than meat, so your body needs time to get used to the transition.

Substitute one at a time. One easy way of going at your own pace is to simply swap a product for another, starting with the foods you eat less frequently or in smaller quantities. For example, start by replacing your dairy products with plant-based beverages made from nuts and seeds, and explore vegan cheese options. After that you can transition to meat alternatives, such as tofu, tempeh or textured vegetable protein.

Supplement. Some people worry they won’t be getting enough protein if they switch to a plant-based diet. Look for foods that are high in protein, such as legumes, nuts and seeds, and supplement with a vegan protein powder if you wish. Instead of making meat the main component of your meals, try planning them around fruits and vegetables and other meat alternatives.

Find the natural health products and supplements you need to help transition to a plant-based diet at a Canadian Health Food Association member health food store in your neighbourhood.

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