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Choosing a plant-based diet is one of the most powerful methods that can help you in boosting your energy levels, improve your health, and prevent chronic diseases. By making some changes to your nutrition, you can help the environment, live longer, and minimize the risk of getting sick.

Based on some scientific evidence, most chronic diseases can be prevented, managed, or reversed by practicing a plant-based diet. In fact, several studies reveal that a plant-based diet can help in minimizing the risk of heart disease, type-2 diabetes, specific types of cancer as well as any other major illnesses. After making some changes to their diet, most people were able to reduce inflammation, obtain more energy, as well as improve their health.

What Does a Plant-Based Diet Consists Of?

A whole-food, plant-based diet is composed of natural foods that are not extremely processed. This is composed of whole foods that are either unrefined or slightly refined ingredients. Plant-based foods refer to those that originate from plants and do not include animal ingredients such as eggs, meat, milk, honey, etc.

While there might be some overlapping between vegan and plant-based diets, there are also some significant differences. A vegan diet is composed of foods that imitate meat and cheese. However, a plant-based diet avoids these products and prefers close-to-natural foods that are minimally processed. As a result, it will be easier for you to satisfy your nutritional needs.

What are the Basic Food Groups?

Here is a rundown of the major food groups that you will encounter on a plant-based diet.

  • Whole grains – refers to cereals, grains, and other types of starches including oats, brown rice, quinoa, whole wheat, popcorn, and many more.
  • Fruits – includes any type of fruits such as bananas, apple, strawberries, grapes, oranges, etc.
  • Tubers – are composed of root vegetables including carrots, potatoes, parsnips, and others.
  • Vegetables – includes different types of veggies such as collards, peas, kale, spinach, lettuce, corn, peppers, and others.
  • Legumes – are composed of any kind of beans as well as pulses, lentils, etc.

Aside from this, there are also other foods that you can enjoy such as seeds, nuts, tofu, avocados, plant-based milk, whole-grain flours, bread, and tempeh. Nevertheless, it is greatly recommended that you should eat these foods moderately since they are rich in calories, which could likely contribute to weight gain.

What Are the Advantages of a Plant-Based Diet?

Switching to plant-based nutrition provides you with a lot of benefits that are all backed up by science. The following are some of its advantages:

Prevents Diseases

Eating plant-based whole foods can greatly help in preventing, stopping, and in some instances reversing chronic diseases. There is great scientific evidence when it comes to diabetes and heart disease. However, research also revealed that plant-based diets can improve liver function, lower rates of arthritis, and help in making your kidneys healthier.

Reverse Or Prevents Type 2 Diabetes

Healthy plant-based diets can help in significantly lowering the rates of type 2 diabetes and improving results for those who are already experiencing this harmful chronic condition. Based on the 2018 review from the BMJ Open Diabetes Research & Care, plant-based diets are more advantageous for those who have type 2 diabetes compared to the diets suggested by most diabetes associations. It also provides greater improvements emotionally and physically.

Plant-based diets are rich in fiber and low in saturated fat. This means that it can help your body in properly absorbing nutrients and regulating blood sugar. Additionally, plant-based diets can help in minimizing the risk of being obese or overweight, which is the major risk factor for type 2 diabetes.

Improves Heart Health

A plant-based diet is highly effective in managing cardiovascular health as well as in stopping, preventing, and reversing heart disease, which is the common cause of death in the United States. According to the 2019 review of 99 studies, diets that mainly consist of whole plant foods can significantly help in lowering the risk of cardiovascular disease than diets that are rich in dairy products and meat.

There are a lot of reasons for this. Since animal-based foods contain a lot of cholesterol and saturated fat, they can increase your blood cholesterol levels and causes fats to develop in your arteries. Most often, highly processed foods are high in salt which can increase blood pressure, affecting the lining of the arteries. If you can eliminate these dangerous foods from your diet and substitute them with plant foods, then you could lower your blood pressure, cholesterol levels, as well as the risk of heart disease.

Supports Your Immune System

Plants contain essential nutrients which are not found in other foods. The antioxidants, phytochemicals, vitamins, and minerals in plants can help keep your cells healthy and keeping your body balanced. As a result, your immune system can function well. Having a healthy immune system can essentially help in minimizing the risk of cancer since it can identify and fight mutations in cells preventing disease.

Effective Weight Management

Eating a plant-based diet can make you leaner compared to those who don’t. This diet is also great for those who are looking to lose weight without the need to keep on counting calories. One of the most powerful tools for losing weight is a whole-food, plant-based diet. Research indicates that people who switched to a plant-based diet are leaner than those who refuse to do so. According to a 2020 review of 19 intervention studies, those participants who were given a plant-based diet lost weight. This is a fact for each of these studies. In these studies, the participants were assigned to a diet for a specific period of time.

What makes healthy plant-based diets very efficient in losing weight? According to research, the bottom line is calorie density. Highly processed foods and dairy products are rich in calories; however, they are low in fiber which can help us in feeling full and energizes a healthy gut microbiome.

Since whole plant foods have fewer calories, you can eat as much as you want without going over the limit of your calorie needs. That is why, when you are on a plant-based diet, you will always be encouraged to eat more until such time that you are fully satisfied. There is no portion limit or calorie counting needed.

Leaves A Lighter Environmental Footprint

With a plant-based diet, you won’t put too much stress on the environment. One of the best things that you can contribute to the environment is opting for a whole-food, plant-based, or vegan diet.

One of the major reasons is that growing animals for food is a very ineffective use of resources. According to David L. Katz, MD, MPH, FACPM, FACP, FACLM, feeding animals with crops would only result in waste in relation to the efficiency when people will simply eat the plant foods directly. By just eating the plants, you are eliminating the middleman. According to a 2018 analysis, livestock that is consumed worldwide provides 18% calories, however, it also takes up 83% of farmland.

Save Some Money on Groceries

Aside from being the most sustainable and the healthiest foods, plant foods are also very affordable. The fact is, according to the research found in the Journal of Hunger & Environmental Nutrition, choosing plant-based can help in reducing your grocery expenses by at least $750 each year for every individual.

If you fill your kitchen with whole-food plant-based staples such as potatoes, brown rice, carrots, dried beans, etc., then you can create nutritious, satisfying meals for a lesser cost. You can even create your own budget-friendly vegan meal plan for one week.

Adapting to a plant-based lifestyle can help you in looking and feeling your best. At the same time, it can also make you healthier. Consulting a certified nutrition specialist can help you in ensuring that you are getting all the nutrients that your body needs.

If you are looking for a plant-based lifestyle consultation in Austin, Texas then you can contact Pick Plants 4 Life. We can help you in achieving your lifestyle goals. We also offer virtual and phone consultations so you can always get in touch with us wherever you are.

First, we are going to conduct some evaluation on your present diet and lifestyle. Afterward, we can provide you with realistic goals. We are going to give you some advice and suggest tools that can help you in achieving these goals. Keep in mind that we don’t just make short-term diets. The goal of Pick Plants 4 Life is to give you a sustainable lifestyle change. In other words, we are going to help you permanently move to a plant-based lifestyle. Just give us a call at 512-656-9209 or send us a message at justpickplants@gmail.com.

You are also encouraged to join our seven-day quick start. If you have high blood sugar, high cholesterol, or high blood pressure or you are obese, then we can help you. You don’t have to pay for the initial consultation. Individual session only costs $99 and for a 4-pack you will pay $280 only.