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Consuming a healthy diet throughout the life-course prevent all types of diseases and conditions. However, the increase in the production of unhealthy processed foods and drinks has led to a change in dietary patterns. This downshift in lifestyle causes a need for a change to a whole food plant-based diet plan.
Food Has Been Overprocessed
Unlike our ancestors, who hunted and gathered their foods from a natural environment, our food is no longer pure. Instead, it is over-processed and genetically modified. These processes strip the food of it original vitamins and micronutrients. As a result, we are exposed to these toxins, many people turn to a whole food plant-based diet plan.
Processed Foods are Losing its Luster
Unfortunately, consuming foods high in sugar, sodium and fats is no longer popular. In fact, in the last decade, there is major shift in lifestyle. People are turning to healthy eating habits and are turning away from low nutritional, high caloric foods and drinks. The latest nutritional trend is eating a whole food plant-based diet.
What Does a Healthy Diet Look Like?
Consuming a balanced, healthy diet will vary from one person to another. No two diets are the same. In fact, age, gender, lifestyle and physical activity comes into play. However, the basic ingredient of a healthy diet remains the same.
All healthy diets include:
- Fruits, vegetables, legumes (lentils, beans) | nuts, whole grains (oats, wheat, brown rice).
- At least 400g (five portions) of fruit and vegetables per day.
- Less than 5% (25g) from free sugars (sugars added to foods and drinks)
- Reducing saturated fats to less than 10%
- Reduce trans-fats to less than 1%
- Choose unsaturated fats (healthy fats)
- Reducing the amount of total fat intake
- Use unsaturated and polyunsaturated fats (Safflower oil – 74%)
Reduce Saturated and Trans-fat
- Steaming, boiling instead of frying
- Eat reduced-fat dairy foods and lean meats
- Limit baked, fried or pre-packaged snacks and foods.
The Downside of Sodium
People are unaware of the amount of salt they consume. For example, in many countries, most salt comes from processed foods such as ready meals, processed meats and bread. Salt is also added to food during cooking (soy sauce, bouillon, stock cubes.
Reduce Excessive Intake of Salt and Sugar
- Reducing salt intake to less than 5 g per day prevents 1.7 million deaths each year.
- Eating fresh fruits and raw vegetables as snacks instead of sugary snacks.
Refine, Unrefined and Complex Carbohydrates
Whole plant food is chock-full of vitamins, minerals and fiber. Unlike the refined carbs found in processed foods, whole foods contain healthy, complex, unrefined carbohydrates. Moreover, these complex carbs lower blood sugar. They also decrease weight and body mass.
Health Benefits of Whole Food Plant-Based Foods
Are you eating your veggies? Great! There are many benefits derived from eating a whole food plant-based diet. For one thing, whole foods in their natural form and plants provide protection from inflammation. In other words, they lower the body’s inflammatory response. Moreover, inflammation is the major cause of a good deal of health conditions such as:
- Heart disease
- Gastrointestinal disorders
- Alzheimer’s disease
- High blood pressure
Plant foods also support optimal health at the cellular level. The compounds in the plant foods help repair defects in DNA. Defective DNA leads to chronic conditions as state above. For example, sulforaphanes found in broccoli and other cruciferous vegetables offer natural, power support in the process of DNA repair.
Eating a Plant-Based Diet
- Promotes longevity
- Keeps skin, teeth, and eyes healthy
- Supports muscles
- Boosts immunity lower risks of heart disease, diabetes and strengthens bone.
Invest in Protecting Your Immune System
A strong immune system can go a long way. In fact, a healthy immune system protects you from all kinds of diseases. First, it recognizes a virus, bacterium, or other danger. Second, it uses various defense mechanisms to neutralize or destroy the danger. As long as your immune system is healthy, it fulfills its duty of protection. On the other hand, it may malfunction.
When the Immune System Attacks Itself
When your immune system runs down, guess what happens? It goes in attack mode and attacks your body instead of protecting it. Once the attack begins, it is difficult to get under control. It seems like a run-away train. This attack is what causes autoimmune problems.
Autoimmune Diseases Cause Allergies
An auto Immune disease lowers your immune system. As a result, you can experience an allergic reaction. This why it is so important to fill your body with nutritious foods. Plant food, in particular can have a huge impact on the strength and health of your immune system. Therefore, eating too little or too much can alter your immunity. Nutrition is the key to health.
Processed Foods Wreaks Havoc on the Body
Have you notice what happens when you eat an excess of processed foods. You feel bloated your body begins to weaken over time. You may even experience more allergies or seem to frequently get sick. This is a sign that you have may have an autoimmune condition. A Whole food plant-based diet supplies the most powerful macro and micronutrients for your body.
Micronutrients in Foods We Eat
The micronutrient content of each food is different. Therefore, its best to eat a variety of foods to get an assortment of your daily vitamins and minerals. An adequate intake of these nutrients is essential for optimal health. In fact, vitamins and minerals are vital for growth, immune function, brain development and more. The top 3 macronutrients are listed below, along with micronutrients:
Macro and Micronutrients
A diet chock-full of heavily processed foods, high fat-high sugar or salt content, is a recipe for the build-up of inflammation. As you know, inflammation damages the body. However, inflammation is not the only cause of inflammation. Here is a list of other things that trigger inflammation:
- Environmental toxins
- Hormone Imbalances
- Emotional stress
- Excess body fat
- Too much intake of sugar
Hippocrates, the Father of Medicine Said it Best
“Everyone has a doctor in him nor her; we just have to help it in its work. The natural healing force within each one of us is the greatest force in getting well. Our food should be our medicine. Our medicine should be our food’. This is his belief alongside of his Hippocratic Oath. This oath is the oldest medical vow that is taken by physicians back in Hippocrates time. However, it is still a major part of a doctor’s best practices.
Plant-Based Lifestyle is Mainstream
Better get on the plant-based wagon. It appears that everyone is opting in. celebrities, athletes, and even countries as big as China are jumping in. As an example, there is an array of celebrity endorsements for plant-based products. In addition, restaurants such as Mickey D’s and White Castle are going green. Plant-forward eating habits are focusing on foods primarily from plants. However, nuts, seeds, oils and whole grains are also included the plant diet.
One of the most effective ways to maintain or lose the pounds is to incorporate a whole food plant-based lifestyle. The Scientific data points the facts that a diet of fresh fruit, vegetables, nuts, seeds and whole grains is guaranteed to improve your health 100%. In fact, nutrition experts report that it can lower blood pressure, cholesterol, and blood sugar.
A Plant-forward lifestyle can also prevent or lower your risk for heart disease, diabetes and some forms of cancer. In addition, a plant-based diet can prevent allergies, inflammation and can also boost your immune system.
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Rachele, Founder and CEO
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